I would make the fuge about 4 inches of oolite my self. I have built a few and have been the most pleased with a sugar fine consistancy. I wouldn't put a sand sifting star in a fuge at all, it defies the purpose of cultivating zooplankton as the star sifts the sand for the micro organisms you are providing "refuge" to. LIke Kat said, go for about 1.5 - 2 lbs of liverock per gallon for the whole system volume, put what you dont' use for aquascaping in the main in your fuge. Next you'll need some macro and a detritivore kit. Aside from those two things put nothing else living in the fuge. If you do those things and have a skimmer, the rest will take care of itself. I also suggest at least 3 - 5 watts/gal
in your fuge that run opposite your main tank lights. There are some really affordable PC
fixtures that should get you there. Another nice boon for fuges is to collect a cup of sand from anyone else you know that has a reef tank or a fuge and add that to yours.
Cheto is a type of macro algae that is becoming more and more popular for refugiums. As far as pods
go you can buy a detritivore kit from many places, but the best of the best is sold by a dude named Bob on ebay. He doesn't have any up for sale ATM, but i'll send him an e-mail and PM you a link as soon as he gets one up. The kit will have everything you need for a fuge, the pods
, the macro, etc. Its about $110.00 shipped. After a cycle his kit is the first thing I add to a tank. I don't even feed my tank, I let the fuge do it for me. I give my tang some formula 2 and garlic soak algae and aside from that everything else eats what the fuge provides.
Here's to swimmin with bowlegged women.
Reef with 30G Sump/Fuge Combo
-30G LTAnemonarium with mated porcelain crabs, 10 sexy shrimp, and 2 pink skunks all tied into the other 135G in my system.