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Old 10-02-2005, 01:52 AM   #1
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Converting from FWLR to Coral-Poke holes in my plan

Hey all. I'm new to the forum, but I've been researching and reading all of the advice for a few months. 8)
I've kept a FOWLR tank for about three years with a fairly descent level of success. I’ve had my casualties just like everyone else, but how else do we learn but from experience?

I’m looking to migrate from a FOWLR tank to a mini reef. My tank stats are in my profile. I want to post my plans-thoughts so more experienced reef keepers can let me know if I’m heading in the wrong direction. One last comment – I'm trying to keep my expenses low, so no extravagant suggestions if you know what I mean.

1. Purchase a Bak-Pak 2 skimmer. I’ll install it once it’s received since my tank is 3yo already. Comments on my choice? I want to run it in a 10 gal DIY sump (to add water volume and hide hardware) at a later date, but I'm taking baby steps for now. I’ve been maintaining my tank with very frequent RO water changes, but I recognize the need for a skimmer. I found a LFS that has a Seaclone 100 for 99.99 and I am tempted to jump at it. Bad choice? I really want the Bak-Pak because it seems pretty versatile and I’ve read it is more efficient. Suggestions?
2. Add a second power head for water circulation. I have one oscillating Penguin head that sits about 3 inches below water level and breaks the surface nicely. I will probably buy another and place it towards the bottom to push water through the LR. Would that be sufficient for proper circulation?
3. Bring my LR stock up to about 30 Lbs
4. Upgrade my lighting to two 40w Current-USA PC’s. Total 80W for the 20 tall. Is this enough for a 20 tall? Should I add more juice due to the tank depth – 24 inches?
5. Determine what type of live stock I can support with my setup and begin to stock the tank. Understanding I can’t hold much in a 20, I’ll have to choose carefully. Any suggestions with the setup I’ve described?

I do have some other general questions:
-Should I consider converting my current CC substrate to LS? My CC is clean and looks good. Will it be sufficient? Does it cause issues with certain types of corals?
-Will adding a sump be worth the hassle? Actually, the hassle is fun, but how beneficial will the sump be since it will only add about 6 gal to my total water volume?
- Is 30Lbs of LR sufficient for a 20G tank?
- Being somewhat inexperienced, I’ve only monitored my ammonia, nitrate, nitrite and PH levels for the past three years. What additional parameters do I need to monitor to keep a healthy reef tank?

I guess that’s about all I can think of right now. Sorry for the long post, I tend to be wordy.. .. Thanks in advance for any advice.
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Old 10-02-2005, 10:10 AM   #2
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Welcome to AquariumAdvice.com!!!
Quote:
Purchase a Bak-Pak 2 skimmer
Good.
Quote:
Add a second power head for water circulation
Also good.
Quote:
Upgrade my lighting to two 40w Current-USA PC’s. Total 80W for the 20 tall. Is this enough for a 20 tall? Should I add more juice due to the tank depth – 24 inches?
You may run into some problems here. First off, determine what corals you wnat to keep. 80watts of CF lighting will be okay for low light corals depending on placement. Just not enough for clams, sps or anemones. It all depends on what you want to keep.
Quote:
Determine what type of live stock I can support with my setup and begin to stock the tank
You may be limited a bit but you still have some nice opitons...shrimp gobies, clown gobies, royal gramma, six line wrasse, fire fish, various clowns.
Quote:
Should I consider converting my current CC substrate to LS? My CC
IMO, I would. LS takes less work. CC will work fine as well as long as you stay ontop of cleaning it. Remember, changing your substrate will cause you to loose a large portion of your beneficial bacteria bed. It will need to be re-established.
Quote:
Will adding a sump be worth the hassle?
Sumps can always be beneficial. For a six gal upgrade it may not make that much difference. You may be able to hide some equipment in it.
Quote:
Is 30Lbs of LR sufficient for a 20G tank?
Yup.
Quote:
Being somewhat inexperienced, I’ve only monitored my ammonia, nitrate, nitrite and PH levels for the past three years. What additional parameters do I need to monitor to keep a healthy reef tank?
SG, CA, ALK, PO4
Good luck!
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Old 10-06-2005, 07:10 AM   #3
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Thanks for taking the time to reply to my post lando, and I appreciate all of the advice.

I have one last question regarding the skimmer. It seems the CPR Bak Pak2 would be the best choice as it was recommended by the LFS and I’ve read some pretty descent on line reviews. However, I am somewhat torn between that and the Aqua c Remora. Does anyone have experience with both? My two main concerns are performance and silence.
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Old 10-06-2005, 11:49 AM   #4
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from i read the Aqua C Remora is like top of the line

http://www.aquariumadvice.com/review...cat=all&page=1
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