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Old 09-25-2005, 02:22 PM   #1
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Conflicting advice

So I have been looking into converting a 29 gal from FW to SW. As this is the first time with SW, I had planned on starting FOWLR and then trying some easy corals later assuming everything works out to my liking. I done some reading on-line and a bit of lurking in these forums and I have also talked about setting this up at a couple of the LFS around here.
The first gave me the following advice:
HOB or canister filter is pointless.
Need about 4 wpg; otherwise the algae on the LR will die.
Go with about 30 lbs of LR, a couple of powerheads, and a HOB skimmer.

I was inclined to trust that this was the guy's honest opinion as he suggested that I get the skimmer and light on-line. However, the second:
Wouldn't recommend LR being only source of filtration.
Need either a HOB/canister filter OR a good skimmer (again HOB).
Could get away without the skimmer with larger and more frequent PWCs.
Stock lighting is just fine for the LR and even some corals (mushrooms, zoos, and a couple of others he mentioned).

Are these just a couple of examples of differing opinions in the hobby or is there some overall picture I am missing?
Thanks,
Chris
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Old 09-25-2005, 02:30 PM   #2
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Yes, it is all just opinion and what you like. Myself, I prefer to use no outside filtration except for the skimmer. I have a hob skimmer, a ton of lr and several powerheads for water movement. The 4wpg I don't feel is necessary unless you are gonna do corals. I have NO lights on my FO tank and I've had no problem getting coralline to grow. Just my opinion but I wouldn't keep corals, even mushrooms, under NO lighting. There are more than one way of doing it. Many people keep successful tanks with mechanical filtration and less lr. It's all in what you want.
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Old 09-25-2005, 06:16 PM   #3
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I would say, live rock and a skimmer are the only filtration you need. Later, you can add a refugium for more (mostly nitrate)

Kim
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Old 09-26-2005, 01:35 AM   #4
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I would have the HOB for mechanical filteration. Also nice if you ever need to run carbon or a polyfilter. Doesn't hurt to have the extra water movement either.
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Old 09-26-2005, 10:48 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by quarryshark
I would have the HOB for mechanical filteration. Also nice if you ever need to run carbon or a polyfilter. Doesn't hurt to have the extra water movement either.
This is all I use my HOB for. Its on all the time and occasionaly I drop a bag of GAC or other specific media in there. I don't even have a skimmer
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Old 09-26-2005, 12:16 PM   #6
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Quote:
don't even have a skimmer
Are you running a SW tank w/no skimmer?
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Old 09-26-2005, 01:47 PM   #7
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have been for over 3 years now. They are bennificial, but not necessary, IMO.
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Old 09-26-2005, 04:06 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BillyZ
have been for over 3 years now. They are bennificial, but not necessary, IMO.
Do you mind explaining your SW setup, the one that isn't using a protein skimmer?

Thanks
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Old 09-26-2005, 07:06 PM   #9
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I agree with Fluff, BillyZ and QS they all give good advice. IMO LR is the best filtration we can have, I would run no less then 1 lb per gallon. Running NO lights on a FO is fine, I have tons of coraline on my fowlr with NO lighting.
skimmers are great but not needed as long as you stay on top of the water changes.
Start out slow and keep up on your research and you will be fine. This is not a cheap hobby and if you cut corners now it will come back to bite you in the long run. If your going to go reef i would say get a skimmer and at least PC lighting. having a HOB filter or canister filter is not a bad idea. The HOB ones are cheap..
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Old 09-26-2005, 10:47 PM   #10
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First off--I really appreciate everyone's comments so far. This has been very helpful.

As it currently is a FW tank, I do have a HOB filter on it right now. One thing I had wondered about is how bad would the salt creep be given the constant surface agitation with a HOB filter?

Quote:
This is not a cheap hobby and if you cut corners now it will come back to bite you in the long run.
I understand that and I would say that I am trying to set up this tank right but without unnecessary expenses. For example, if 4 wpg was necessary for the LR, I would plan on getting it now. If not, I'll stick with NO for the time being and upgrade when I start keeping corals.

Anyways--thanks again.
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