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Old 01-05-2015, 07:09 PM   #1
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big freshwater-saltwater conversion. need expert advice from the best

i have a 140 gallon freshwater tank. i was having some ideas about turning it into saltwater reef tank . can it be done ?i run a aqua top cf500 canister for 175gallons will i be able to use this? if not what would i need for filtration and how much live rock would i need. i have a powerhead and a heater i know i can use. and what are the best lights needed for a reef. money is not really a big problem. what i don't want to spend more than 500$ the tank i want to convert is in my profile picture
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Old 01-05-2015, 07:36 PM   #2
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It can be done, but not for $500. Not by a long shot.

You are looking at 140lb of rock alone and if you go cheap and buy dry at $3 per lb rather than the $6 - $10 per lb of cured live rock that's still going to set you back $420.

If you went with cheap Ebay LED light fixtures you would need 3 of them for a tank that size and they run $120 each.

Also, it is highly recommended to run a refugium with a skimmer on a tank that size. The sump alone will set you back around $150.

Ro/Di system - $150
Rock - $420
Lights - $360
Skimmer - $250
Refugium - $100 ish
Quality test kit - $60
Refractometer - $20
Substrate - $100

They are all rough prices for low end equipment. The prices skyrocket if you want the top of the line equipment.
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Old 01-05-2015, 07:39 PM   #3
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You want to aid for 1 lbs per gallon for both sand and rock. You will want to look into lights, as it is the most expensive part of a reef tank.
The taotronics LEDs are the best for your money and will cover 2ft of tank length.
The canister filters can work in saltwater, but we normally will aim towards a sump for extra equipment as unkept canisters lead to nitrate traps and reefs aim for pristine water.
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Old 01-05-2015, 09:30 PM   #4
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Can you recommend a sump and protien skimmer in particular that would be good. I meant 500 on the filter system i didnt want to spend more than. My total budget is around 1200.

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Old 01-05-2015, 09:31 PM   #5
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Maybe a few hundred more or so depend on my income returns

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Old 01-05-2015, 09:45 PM   #6
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Reef Octopus Classic 200INT 8” Internal Protein Skimmer - Bulk Reef Supply

Make the sump yourself. There's tons of videos on it and it's a simple process. All you need is a tank that can fit in your stand and some plates of glass to silicone in place.
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Old 01-05-2015, 10:36 PM   #7
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Quote:
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Reef Octopus Classic 200INT 8” Internal Protein Skimmer - Bulk Reef Supply



Make the sump yourself. There's tons of videos on it and it's a simple process. All you need is a tank that can fit in your stand and some plates of glass to silicone in place.

And with the $1/g sale in most places, it's a quick, sweet deal.


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Old 01-06-2015, 05:05 PM   #8
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Would i rather save that much money making a sump than buying one. And i seen pivtires of them. The only thing i see in the sumo is the protien skimmer. I didnt see any filtration media or anything. Is this normal. Im still tryin To wrap my mind around how this thing works

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Old 01-06-2015, 05:55 PM   #9
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Would i rather save that much money making a sump than buying one. And i seen pivtires of them. The only thing i see in the sumo is the protien skimmer. I didnt see any filtration media or anything. Is this normal. Im still tryin To wrap my mind around how this thing works

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The filter media in a tank is the live rock. The live rock will serve as area for beneficial bacteria to colonize for the nitrification process. It is also super porous which creates anaerobic areas inside the rock to serve as a place for nitrate removing bacteria to reside.

A refugium is there to keep your skimmer, heater, macro algae, dosing equipment, and pretty much everything else. The best thing about a refugium is that it can grow macro algae which is another means of nutrient export in a tank. As for buying / making it, I don't think one you buy will make enough of a difference to waste the money. They cost an absurd amount of money and do the exact same thing.
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Old 01-06-2015, 07:34 PM   #10
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Is there any good overflow boxes for my size tank that would work good to pump the water into the sump.

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