moving tips

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moving tips

Postby Rslinger on Fri Jun 01, 2012 4:01 pm

Ok this is not my first tank move but it is my first move with a very mature tank. All the corals are grown into rocks and a few of then are growing on multiple rocks. How in the world to I move the with out breaking them all?
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Re: moving tips

Postby Chyendra on Sun Jun 03, 2012 8:24 pm

I'm going to have the same problem in a few months. I was thinking that I would put the larger pieces into a cooler with water...
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Re: moving tips

Postby plainrt on Sun Jun 03, 2012 8:43 pm

buckets and will be fine.
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Re: moving tips

Postby Rslinger on Mon Jun 04, 2012 4:09 am

Also I am going to have to cut my plumbing and glue back together. How long should I wait to put back in
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Re: moving tips

Postby MadCityReefer on Mon Jun 04, 2012 5:06 pm

I have moved plenty of times and I have found that using a 55gal Rubbermaid brute container/garbage can with a heater and airstone WORKS GREAT!!!
Your live rock is a natural filter and will break down the ammonia and nitrites. I had to move a 90 gallon tank and I used 2 of brute containers in the past. I was able to store all my live rock and animals for a week WITH ZERO LOSSES. It gives you a chance to set your tank back up and to let the water clear so you can set up your aquascape without having to rush. Depending were you live I could borrow you mine if you like.
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Re: moving tips

Postby Aimforever on Mon Jun 04, 2012 6:39 pm

I moved a few times when I had less mature colonies and it was always a piece of cake. My last move sounds more like what you are up against. I had lots of very large SPS colonies that had matured over a few years time. The move was only about 90 minute drive. I really hate to sound like a downer, but it was pretty much a disaster.

I don't think I'll ever try to move a large number of huge mature colonies again. It is really difficult to prevent them from getting broken up in transit. Obviously this depends on the type of coral, but with many of my SPS their large mass was their downfall. A few of them collapsed under their own weight when I lifted them out of the water, but that was just the beginning. Even though I gently packed all the largest colonies up individually in a few dozen rubbermaids with airstones, by the time we got them to the destination many of them had broken loose from the rocks and all of them had fractured under their own weight because of the bumps in the road. The really big colonies (talking softball to basketball size) were busted up pretty good and were sliming like crazy. Even though I had 400 gallons of saltwater mixed & waiting at the destination, there was so much slime and die off I quickly ran out of clean saltwater and couldn't make more fast enough to keep up. It is unreal how much huge SPS colonies can slime when the whole colony is irritated. With the frags and colonies baseball size or smaller almost 100% survived. With the larger stuff I would say close to 75% mortality.

I was so dissappointed I almost took a break from the hobby. It was absolutely exhausting work and the losses made it just that much worse. My biggest regret is not making frags first. Next time I am going to setup a small temporary tank at the destination and then transfer little frags of everything so if the larger stuff doesn't make it at least I don't have to start my collection over again.

Like I said, I really don't mean to sound like a downer. I'm sure others have pulled off moves like this with great success. If you only have a few large colonies you could probably pull it off pretty easily. If you have a few dozen pretty mature SPS like I did, I think your best bet is to frag your colonies, move the frags and start the tank fresh. Sell the extra frags before you move to save yourself the work and use the proceeds to get some new stuff for the new tank. It just wasn't worth the headache, and hopefully I can help you avoid a similar situation.
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Re: moving tips

Postby Socratic Monologue on Wed Jun 06, 2012 10:04 pm

Rslinger wrote:Also I am going to have to cut my plumbing and glue back together. How long should I wait to put back in

I wonder if cutting it now, and putting in some unions, would help you reassemble it more efficiently.

I've done a few moves, the longest one was 12 hours on the road (MI to MN). The only wisdom I've gained is that you should be careful not to let your live sand run out of oxygen. Once I put all my LS in 5 gallon pails, and it apparently suffocated. Other moves, I've put the LS in thin layers in the bottom of the Rubbermaid totes that the corals and LR were in, and it did fine.
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