The suggested sump configuration is: Skimmer/LR
rubble (if at all) -> Fuge -> Return.
Check out this site for some ideas: http://www.melevsreef.com/allmysumps.html
The Mag18 should be ok, assuming your overflow can handle it.
You don't nessecerily need live sand to start (and don't buy "live sand in a bag" - its not very live). Your sand can be seeded from your LR
. Your LR
amount looks just fine.
by its self, you won't be limited in fish. But, if you keep inverts (hermits, crabs, snails - recommended to help keep your system clean and running smoothly btw
), you may need to avoid triggers and some puffers, and other invertabrate eating fish.
Instant Ocean is a popular salt. Easily found, although has a somewhat low calcium reading (not a major concern unless you do lots of corals).
You generaly never need additives in a FOWLR
system. Weekly or twice monthly water changes are the best way to keep the system balanced.
When you're cycling your tank, you want at minimum:
Ammonia (needs to be salt water capable), Nitrite, Nitrate, pH (high range, 7.8->8.6 or that area). You also need a salinity meter. If you can afford it, a refractometer is a good buy, much more accurate than the swing arm hydrometers. MarineDepot has one on sale for about $50.
When running a tank, you should have:
pH, Nitrate, Alkalinity
If you're keeping corals, add:
Calcium, Magnesium, Phosphate
I recommend Salifert, very accurate and easy to use. The Aquarium Phram variety are also decent, and get a good bang for the buck. The Red Sea ones tend to be very inconsistent in my expierience.
You're on the right track!
I'd see if you can add a couple of powerheads (Maxijet 1200, or even Seio's) to keep the flow up in the main tank.
A reef tank is a FOWLR
with corals generaly. You need to watch more water parameters, and provide tons of light. 8)
55g reef, 2x250W 10k MH
+ 2x96W PC
actninc, 10g sump, AquaC Urchin skimmer, 65lbs LR
xenia, mushrooms, wels. open brain, fungia radiata (orange), green eyed zoos
flame angel, mated pair of false perc, 6-line, firefish
20gH electric yellow cichlid