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Old 09-08-2004, 03:02 PM   #1
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Caring for live rock...

I've been looking into starting a SW tank, and wanted to do FO. However, everyone on here seems to praise live rock. So, I figured if live rock wasn't too difficult to maintan, and wasn't going to require that I spend alot of extra cash, I would maybe try FOWLR (though I don't quite understand what the benefits of LR are). So, my questions are...

1. If I wanted to put some live rock in my tank, what else would I need in order to sustain it (lights, filters, etc.)?

2. What exactly are the benefits of live rock?


P.S. My planned setup is a 55 gallon tank with LS, a Rena Filstar XP2 canister filter, a 200w heater and Red Sea Prizm Deluxe Hang-On Skimmer. I was sort of hoping to create a kind of fake reef using normal rocks and fake corals.

Thanks.
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Old 09-08-2004, 03:32 PM   #2
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1. You wont need anthing more than what you plan on using. (dont use that skimmer though, go with a CPR Bak Pak 2R or an AquaC Remora)

2. Live rock is full of benifical bacteria which can help with your filtration, Infact, Most reef aquarists only use live rock for filtration! ( that and a skimmer of course). Live Rock also has bristile worms, shrimps, crabs and other organisms which help keep the tank clean. and the coraline algeas, feather duster worms, brittle stars, and other hitchhikers which add to the beautiful, natural look that marine aquarists strive for.

Live Rock can be expensive though. many people use a certain amount of live rock and then use "base rock" or dead live rock to fill the rest of the order. the base rock is cheaper and will eventually become just as live as the live rock is.

for a 55 gallon you will probibly want to have about 75lbs (or 1.5 lbs per gallon.) of Live Rock in there for adequate filtration purposes and also to simply fill the space up more, although, depending on the size and shape of the rock, you can get away with less. Check out the Live Rock in My gallery. I have 40 lbs in a 37 gallon tank.
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Hardware: 37 gallon SW tank and stand by Oceanic Systems, Magnum 350 Pro Canister Filter (half carbon), CPR Bak Pak 2R skimmer, Maxijet 1200 Powerhead, RenaCal 150 W heater, Compact fluorescent lights with moonlights. 40 lbs of liverock, 3" sand bed.

Software:2 Tank-Raised Ocellaris Clowns, 1 Purple Firefish, 1 Electric Orange hermit crab, 18 Blue Legged hermit crabs, 8 or so Nassarius snails, Xenia, Blue, green, and Green Striped Mushrooms.

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Old 09-08-2004, 04:36 PM   #3
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I'll second the notion that a Prizm is not a good enough skimmer for a 55gallon tank. get the CPR or if you got the cash, the Remora.
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Old 09-08-2004, 05:07 PM   #4
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Thanks guys, that was really helpful. Do you know a good place for me to pick up the protien skimmer(s) you mentioned? I already have everything I mentioned, less the skimmer.

One more question for you guys, what if I wanted to add coral, would I need to add somthing then?
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Old 09-08-2004, 05:49 PM   #5
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Try one of the sites sponsors for a good deal on a skimmer.

Adding corals will most likely require a lighting upgrade.. and possibly additional equipment for the extra waterflow requirements.

How much light and flow is determined by what corals you'd like to keep.
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Old 09-08-2004, 05:59 PM   #6
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What do you guys think of these, it's basically a knock off of the CPR duak bak pak, it's way cheaper though:

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll...sPageName=WDVW
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Old 09-08-2004, 06:12 PM   #7
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Thats an awsome knockoff! don't see anything wrong with it, but you will probibly have major microbubble problems. ( you dont want that. ) The Bak Pak 2R pretty much eleminates this problem. I have also heard that the bio filter media is a hotbed for nitrates and most people remove it from their Bak Paks and replace it with an internal bubble trap. ( which may not fit that model.)

also, you will want a pre-skimmer box to optimise the collection of the skimmer. (and to hide that ugly pump.

check out my gallery to see what my skimmer looks like with the pre-skimmer box.
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Hardware: 37 gallon SW tank and stand by Oceanic Systems, Magnum 350 Pro Canister Filter (half carbon), CPR Bak Pak 2R skimmer, Maxijet 1200 Powerhead, RenaCal 150 W heater, Compact fluorescent lights with moonlights. 40 lbs of liverock, 3" sand bed.

Software:2 Tank-Raised Ocellaris Clowns, 1 Purple Firefish, 1 Electric Orange hermit crab, 18 Blue Legged hermit crabs, 8 or so Nassarius snails, Xenia, Blue, green, and Green Striped Mushrooms.

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