Some before and after shots


In Memoriam









2003 TOTM Recipient
Premium Member
DC, great job on the progression shots. Could you do me a favor my friend. There are a lot of new reefers in this forum with very little experience, it would be great if you could share what you have done to achieve such growth. Could you share what additives, tanks size, lighting, substrate, parameters, refugium, I mean any and everything you can share about what it takes to have a successful reef that is prospering like yours. I would hope that this will cause others to do the same thus making this forum the most informative one on RC. I will keep this thread alive with a ton of questions. I hope you're not offended, but I would greatly appreciate it sir. Thanks.

Mucho Reef

PS, everyone, please take a moment to read the polls at the top of this forum and cast your vote. A COMMENT WOULD BE NICE AS WELL, IT WILL REALLY MAKE A DIFFERENCE, YOU'LL SEE. THANKS


In Memoriam
Well... I have a very simple tank. I have NO SUMP. It is a standard 75-80 tank with halides and T5s for lighting. (2 175w 15k Iwasakis, 2 54w T5 ATI B+ and 2 54w T5 UVL SA) I have 2 fans blowing into my canopy for cooling purposes.

Flow is provided by 4 modified Penguin powerheads, 2 placed on opposing sides of the tank facing each other. I also have a cheapo Prizm skimmer that really doesn't do much. I change 15 gallons a week, with water I make using a PurelyH2O RO/DI unit and Coralife salt.

I only have 5 small fish in my tank and they are fed PE mysis daily. I will occasionally hand feed certain corals, but that is rare (maybe monthly).

I have a 1/2-1 inch sandbed.

The only supplements I add is Randys home-made 3 part recipe (Cal, Alk and Mag)

I dose the Cal and Alk bi-weekly and the mag bi-monthly.

ph= ( I can't remember my last reading)


The UVL day in this pic has been swapped out for another UVL SA.


2003 TOTM Recipient
Premium Member
Great, ok, here I go.

1. What is the duration of your photoperiod?

2. Do you or have you added iodine?

3. Do you test your water, if so, how often and what do you test?

4. Why did you choose not to use a fug?

5. I see you change 15 gallons per week which is roughly % 25 to % 30 percent of your total water volume once you factor in the amount of water your live rock is displacing. Is this because of your bioload and the fact that you are not running a high end skimmer?

6. How often do you change your bulbs?

7. Tell us about Randy's home made 3 part?

8. Have you always maintained a 480 reading on your Calcium?
Pro's, cons?

9. My system is very simple and low tech as I see that yours is. Care to expound on why you chose low tech?

10. Do you feed your corals, how often, when and what type of food?

Trust me, I'm not trying to challenge you, but I have always enjoyed listening to very low tech success stories, as well as all the successes of our members, but most importantly tanks like yours. Years ago I had some great success with running a Skilter for a skimmer. People laughed at me until I showed them the growth I had using it. It is probably the most inefficient skimmer out there, but used in the right application, it works well. Thanks again for sharing and helping so many reefers with the answering of these questions. Much continued success and thanks again for being a good sport about this.

Mucho Reef


In Memoriam
1. ATI B+ come on at 2pm. UVL SA come on at 2:30pm and halides come on 3pm. They then go off in reverse. Halides at 9pm, UVL SA at 9:30pm and ATI B+ at 10pm. (My fans come on and off with the ATI B+)

Total period, about 8 hours.

2. I do add 2 drops of Lugols every once in a while. I do not have a scehdule like I do with the CAL/ALK/MAG. I do not test for iodine, therefore I don't want to get too heavy into dosing. I do use it for dips though.

3. I test weekly for SG, Cal and Alk. I just use my cheapo hydrometer for SG and Salifert for the other.

4. No fuge or sump because when I bought the tank I was only 20 years old and it was a FO tank. I started adding LR and some low light corals until I am where I am now. I will have a sump and fuge when I upgrade to a lrager tank.

5. Yeah, I make up for my lack of equipment in changing water. A couple years ago I started loosing interest, lack of money, and water changes became a once a month, or so, event. All my zoas crashed and my tank looked like crap, so I never skip a water change now. I think the water changes help add the trace elements that most reefers don't supp.

6. Halides= 1 year and I have only had my T5s since Jan. Before I was running PCs and they were changed every 9 months. I would never go back to PCs after having these T5s.

7. Randys 3 part is his simple Cal/Alk and Mag

Cal=Dowflake, or for me Hardness Plus from a pool supply store, mixed with a gallon of RO

Alk=Baking Soda mixed with a gallon of RO

Mag=Epsom salt mixed with a gallon of RO, although he has a better recipe using Peladow? I just have not had the chance to get any of that yet.

You can find the exact recipe/ratios in the Chemistry forum under articles.

8. No. I was running a bit lower, around 300, when I was using B-Ionic 2-part. I ahve not had that problem since switching the the homemade stuff. (Much easier on my wallet also)

9. Mainly because of my financials. I have only been out of college for 2 years and just now have enough money to start really getting into it. Also, I do not own a home yet, so I do not want to move around a large tank with tons of equipment. When I do own a home and have more money I will go with a larger tank and SOME fancy equipment. I seem to be doing fine, so I don't see a reason to had thousands of dollars worth of equipment. I think the only things I would add would be a sump, fuge, better skimmer and nicer powerheads. (all on a larger tank of course)

10. Corals are rarley fed. I feed mysis to my fish and sometimes certain corals will catch a piece. Usually once a month I will go and hand feed things like my blastos, acans and the Nukes.

Thanks for your interest in my tank. I always love sharing specs on it and am always willing to help a fellow reefer when they have Qs.