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Old 07-03-2006, 10:40 PM   #1
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Hello, thinking (... well past thinking) of converting my tropical aquarium into a marine one, after my failure with the 30 gal and the 2gal nano I previously attempted.

anyway this time i'm planning on doing a fish only setup, possibly with live rock, no corals this time as I am not wanting to spend a fortune on lighting.

the tank is (i believe) 85 gallons, correct me if i'm wrong, (3ft x 2.5ft x 18inH).

I would be appriciative if anyone could help me out,

- What substrate should I use?, before I tried using crushed coral but then switched because I was advised against using it, so I tried marine sand but it was like dust and the slightest distubance would cause it to rise and get sucked up the filter intake, grinding the magnetic part of the impeller causing a horrible noise and eventually breaking the filter

- filtration, at the moment I only have a single canister filter, however it is holding up against an adult Oscar, so I think it can handle a few marine fish, is there any rule that says how much filtration is neccesary for x amount of fish?

- lighting, because i'm only planning on keeping fish will flourescent suffice? I will add a couple of PC's if I add any live rock.

- salt, any reccomendations as to what brand of marine salt to use?

- live rock, is this neccessary if I use canisters on a fish only setup? I may add a small amount to seed the huge pile of tufa rock I have in there already.

I plan on stocking it with a powder blue tang, and 2-3 yellow tangs, any other colourful fish I could add which won't hide all day?


sorry about the long post, any help is greatly appriciated, thanks.
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Old 07-03-2006, 10:53 PM   #2
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Sand is the way to go. It will settle and stay well on the bottom after a few days without the powerheads and such running.

I think you will need to up your filtration. NO way one cannister is gonna work. Unless it is a VERY good cannister. You do not have to have liverock.(fish would be happier with rock tho) I would recommend a skimmer.

With the tank being only 3 ft in length, I would caution against tangs, although you have volume, you dont have alot of left-right swimming room. That is the kind of room they need. If you kept with the smallest of the species, you would be ok with a couple.

Flourescent lighting will be fine, you may want to pick up some marine bulbs tho so that the color is nicer than stock flourescent.

Fish only tank, I would go with a salt such as instant ocean. No need for the salts specifically designed for corals.
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Old 07-03-2006, 11:18 PM   #3
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although you have volume, you dont have alot of left-right swimming room.

true, but the diagonal is almost 4ft, would this not suffice?

I agree with you on the canister, it should be okay for a couple of fish but I will get another at some point.

how much lighting would be needed to keep live rock at 18" deep, will standard flourescents
work or should I look into PC's?

thanks for the reply.
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Old 07-04-2006, 10:28 AM   #4
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Hello, thinking (... well past thinking) of converting my tropical aquarium into a marine one, after my failure with the 30 gal and the 2gal nano I previously attempted.
First, evaluate what went wrong the first time around and take measures to correct your mistakes.
Quote:
What substrate should I use?,
I am a fan of LS. I think it looks better and tends to keep NO3 down better then CC.
Quote:
filtration
Ideally, for good biological filtration a LS bed and plenty of LR will do just fine. Combine that with a good skimmer and some powerheads for movement and you will be set. You can use a HOB or canister if you want as a place for mechanical and chemical filtration.
Quote:
lighting, because i'm only planning on keeping fish will flourescent suffice? I will add a couple of PC's if I add any live rock.
NO flourescent will be fine. LR is not light-dependant so no need to add extra if you do not want to .
Quote:
live rock, is this neccessary if I use canisters on a fish only setup?
IMHO, LR is the single best thing any SW aquarist can do for your tank.
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Old 07-04-2006, 08:44 PM   #5
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evaluate what went wrong the first time around
I think I can improve on what I did before because I know exactly what went wrong:

the 30 gallon developed a huge algae problem because of the lighting, the metal halide i was using used single ended screw type bulbs and I couldn't find a replacement aquarium bulb and eventualy i just gave up with it, i had used NO fluorescents previous to the MH successfully so I will use either this or PC for my new tank.
The 2 gallon was just a stupid idea, the temperature wouldn't stay right, and 50% of the water was evaporating daily, this shouldn't be a problem on this one (80gal).

Quote:
a good skimmer
I never used a skimmer on my previous tank but i suppose that could have contributed towards the algae problem, the only problem i see with getting one is that my tank weighs enough without water in, trying to shift it forwards even a couple of inches would be difficult, there is about 4 inches max. behind the tank where i could put a skimmer, so does anyone use or know how good the red sea prizm is? it says its only 2.4" wide and rated up to 100 gallons, is the deluxe option worth getting?

an internal skimmer is out of the question - way to unsightly for my liking.
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