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I am new to salt water aquariums so bare with me. I have looked around for the answers on the site but I havent had much luck finding the exact answers.

1. I am in the process of setting up a 29 gallon biocube and so far I have been buying salt water from my LFS. However today I needed to mix some of my own so using a 5 gallon bucket I filled it with 5 gallons of water and 2.5 cups of instant ocean salt and some stress coat+. Is there anything else I need to do before using this water in my tank. The Salinity is a little high in the bucket right now. I have a pump running it is right now and the water is pretty warm so I will see if it drops.

2. Can the temperature of the water effect the salinity readings (via hydrometer). For example I have been adjusting my heater for the last day or 2 and my water got up to 82 F and during that time my salinity went to about 1.0235. Once it came back down to 78 F it is now reading at 1.0215 where it was before the temperature increase. No water has been removed, added, nor evaporated during this time.

3. I purchased live rock and live sand today. During the cycle period should I be running the lights in the tank?
 

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~/root
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1. I am in the process of setting up a 29 gallon biocube and so far I have been buying salt water from my LFS. However today I needed to mix some of my own so using a 5 gallon bucket I filled it with 5 gallons of water and 2.5 cups of instant ocean salt and some stress coat+. Is there anything else I need to do before using this water in my tank. The Salinity is a little high in the bucket right now. I have a pump running it is right now and the water is pretty warm so I will see if it drops.

-If this water is not from an RO source then you need to add water treatment to remove chlorine and iron

2. Can the temperature of the water effect the salinity readings (via hydrometer). For example I have been adjusting my heater for the last day or 2 and my water got up to 82 F and during that time my salinity went to about 1.0235. Once it came back down to 78 F it is now reading at 1.0215 where it was before the temperature increase. No water has been removed, added, nor evaporated during this time.

-If the water is very hot yes, however in your case i doubt it would be a change you could really tell. 1.0235 and 1.0215 is right around good some people even run a bit higher then that. I run mine at 1.0210

3. I purchased live rock and live sand today. During the cycle period should I be running the lights in the tank?[/QUOTE]

-Run the tank like its got fish in it....which reminds me run it with some fish in it (damsels). If you don't like the idea of put these fish at risk get some fresh shrimp from your deli super market and throw it in. You want to get the thing jump started.



PS:
Welcome to the forum.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
1. I am in the process of setting up a 29 gallon biocube and so far I have been buying salt water from my LFS. However today I needed to mix some of my own so using a 5 gallon bucket I filled it with 5 gallons of water and 2.5 cups of instant ocean salt and some stress coat+. Is there anything else I need to do before using this water in my tank. The Salinity is a little high in the bucket right now. I have a pump running it is right now and the water is pretty warm so I will see if it drops.

-If this water is not from an RO source then you need to add water treatment to remove chlorine and iron

2. Can the temperature of the water effect the salinity readings (via hydrometer). For example I have been adjusting my heater for the last day or 2 and my water got up to 82 F and during that time my salinity went to about 1.0235. Once it came back down to 78 F it is now reading at 1.0215 where it was before the temperature increase. No water has been removed, added, nor evaporated during this time.

-If the water is very hot yes, however in your case i doubt it would be a change you could really tell. 1.0235 and 1.0215 is right around good some people even run a bit higher then that. I run mine at 1.0210

3. I purchased live rock and live sand today. During the cycle period should I be running the lights in the tank?
-Run the tank like its got fish in it....which reminds me run it with some damsels. If you don't like the idea of put these fish at risk get some fresh shrimp from your deli super market and throw it in. You want to get the thing jump started.



PS:
Welcome to the forum.[/QUOTE]

Thanks for the quick relply. The stress coat+ bottle has insturctions on the back for getting salt water ready for your tank. Says that is removes chorine and ammonia.
 

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1. I am in the process of setting up a 29 gallon biocube and so far I have been buying salt water from my LFS. However today I needed to mix some of my own so using a 5 gallon bucket I filled it with 5 gallons of water and 2.5 cups of instant ocean salt and some stress coat+. Is there anything else I need to do before using this water in my tank. The Salinity is a little high in the bucket right now. I have a pump running it is right now and the water is pretty warm so I will see if it drops.

-If this water is not from an RO source then you need to add water treatment to remove chlorine and iron

2. Can the temperature of the water effect the salinity readings (via hydrometer). For example I have been adjusting my heater for the last day or 2 and my water got up to 82 F and during that time my salinity went to about 1.0235. Once it came back down to 78 F it is now reading at 1.0215 where it was before the temperature increase. No water has been removed, added, nor evaporated during this time.

-If the water is very hot yes, however in your case i doubt it would be a change you could really tell. 1.0235 and 1.0215 is right around good some people even run a bit higher then that. I run mine at 1.0210

3. I purchased live rock and live sand today. During the cycle period should I be running the lights in the tank?
-Run the tank like its got fish in it....which reminds me run it with some fish in it (damsels). If you don't like the idea of put these fish at risk get some fresh shrimp from your deli super market and throw it in. You want to get the thing jump started.



PS:
Welcome to the forum.[/QUOTE]

Hate to disagree, but the lights are not going to accomplish anything regarding your cycle, and to put fish in there to speed the cycle is just cruel. I would agree with the raw shrimp, and they will in fact work as well if not better then the damsels, and you have no risk of killing them!

Regarding salinity, how are you checking it, that could just be variance in your hydrometer, or refractometer if it is not temp adjusting.

Welcome btw*w2
 

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~/root
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Hate to disagree, but the lights are not going to accomplish anything regarding your cycle, and to put fish in there to speed the cycle is just cruel. I would agree with the raw shrimp, and they will in fact work as well if not better then the damsels, and you have no risk of killing them!

Regarding salinity, how are you checking it, that could just be variance in your hydrometer, or refractometer if it is not temp adjusting.

Welcome btw*w2

Agree to disagree, I've always had best luck with running it like i would any other tank. Then again a lot of the things i do people wouldn't agree with.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
-Run the tank like its got fish in it....which reminds me run it with some fish in it (damsels). If you don't like the idea of put these fish at risk get some fresh shrimp from your deli super market and throw it in. You want to get the thing jump started.



PS:
Welcome to the forum.
Hate to disagree, but the lights are not going to accomplish anything regarding your cycle, and to put fish in there to speed the cycle is just cruel. I would agree with the raw shrimp, and they will in fact work as well if not better then the damsels, and you have no risk of killing them!

Regarding salinity, how are you checking it, that could just be variance in your hydrometer, or refractometer if it is not temp adjusting.

Welcome btw*w2[/QUOTE]

I am using a Instant Ocean Hydrometer.
 

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I am using a Instant Ocean Hydrometer.


It is most likely just your hydrometer. Make sure that you wash it with clean hot water ever now and again, also when you check your salinity tap it a few times to make sure the bubbles are out. These things are notoriously "somewhat accurate". It beats putting your tounge in the water and guessing, but not as good as a refractometer. Bring a water sample to your LFS and have them check it with a refractometer, then compare that to what you got on your hydrometer. You will be amazed at the difference.
 

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I am using a Instant Ocean Hydrometer.


It is most likely just your hydrometer. Make sure that you wash it with clean hot water ever now and again, also when you check your salinity tap it a few times to make sure the bubbles are out. These things are notoriously "somewhat accurate". It beats putting your tounge in the water and guessing, but not as good as a refractometer. Bring a water sample to your LFS and have them check it with a refractometer, then compare that to what you got on your hydrometer. You will be amazed at the difference.

dont be putting down the tongue in water method, its worked very well for me
but if you dont want to do that remember like salth2o said bubbles are the enemy
 

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i hate my stupid hydrometer, it lies, i swear, it must. I am finding a better one. ASAP.
How could the salinity be the same at 78 degrees as it was when the tank got up to 84 before we got the a/c?
 

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You are learning why folks prefer a refractometer over a hydrometer. If you go the refractometer route, make sure that it is properly calibrated. If you want to save a few bucks and still have on the money accuracy get a bulb hydrometer like this one.

Hagen Living Sea Floating Hydrometer with Thermometer, C & F, small, 8 inch

You are going to want to get your salinity to at least 1.022 for a fish only system and to 1.025 for a reef.

You want to maintain temperature at or below 80 with the lights on and probably not drop to less than 78 with the lights off at night.

Take your time and get it right before you add fish. I strongly advocate using a few grocery store shrimp to run the cycle instead of risking fish. Also, unless you want damsels in your tank, don't put them in your tank. They are very difficult to get out without tearing your tank down once they are in.
 
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