Cycle dry rock in the ol' Brute trash can

I wanted to get some opinions on how to cycle dry rock in the old, reliable brute trash can. I have an existing aquarium that has been up and running for about a year and I’m in the process of building out a larger aquarium. I’d like to start curing the dry rock now for 2-3 months so I don’t need something like MicroBacter that works in about a week. I’m going to add the dry rock, a heater, a small pump for flow, and a rock from the existing tank to seed the bacteria.

First question - any other equipment you would add? (air pump, etc)

Next, I’m thinking through easy ways to feed the bacteria. I know there are a variety of kits you can buy. I’ve also heard of plenty of DIY ideas - let a raw shrimp rot, use carbon dosing, throw in an old sump sock or dirty filter floss, add old water from an existing tank, etc. Personally I’m leaning towards rinsing out my spent filter floss as the easiest DIY solution or an inexpensive kit.

Second question - what has worked for you to feed the bacteria?

Also did read an good thread on this from a few years go.

brs TV on YouTube has a few videos on this def worth checking out. I think longer is better but 4 months seems to be industry average. Even not feeding the bacteria i think is fine , once light is added other photo bacteria will grow as well. You can’t tell how long things will leach out. It is probably best to plan for high phosphates once you get it in the tank and see how things play out and decide if you need phosban,or gfo or something. I think you just can’t go wrong with time
But don’t waste the time. You want to blow off the rocks add more bacteria and water change in your tub as well. It doesn’t do any good if you let it sit in waste.

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I’m a big fan of the Brute can method too. I, unintentionally, cured mine for 8 months this last go around. Worked out really well. I go the super hands-off route. The bacteria you are trying to cultivate will survive in just about any indoor home temperature. I would save yourself the electricity and skip the heater. I just had a MJ1200 in there at the bottom, pointing up.

I’ve seen people doing water changes, but unless the stuff stinks I’d skip them. The bacteria are eventually going to consume everything anyhow. :slight_smile:

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