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Old 08-10-2013, 11:14 AM   #1
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Confused about sumps and setups!

I picked up this 47 gallon bowfront a few days ago with the intentions of doing a FOWLR because I'm not familiar with corals and all of the salt equipment. It was originally a FOWLR setup, and came with a canister filter.
Now recently I've been talking to my lfs's and I'm starting to think about doing something with corals and maybe an anemone and some fish. Here's where I get confused.
SUMPS. Are they absolutely necessary or does it depend on what types of corals and fish you have? I'm not sure I understand what their purpose is either. Would I be able to use the canister (it's a 100gallon filter, can't recall the brand ATM) for it to at least cycle the tank and set up a sump later on since I already have the canister? I keep reading about them and I just confuse myself more.
Protein skimmers. Are these a necessity or can I run my tank without one (i've read online that i can since its smaller but I'm looking for opinions) and just do a little more maintenance and wc's on it?

This is the tank, as it sits in it's current state in my kitchen.
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Old 08-10-2013, 11:26 AM   #2
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Sumps serve a couple purposes. They increase water volume, a place to put equipment and sometimes used for a time out for bad livestock. Imo having a sump makes your DT look a lot better. As for your canister filter, your gonna get a lot of different options. Some people will say no some will say its ok. If you keep the canister then plan on doing maintenance regularly to keep your nitrates down. If you know you can't or won't be able to do maintenance regularly then don't do the canister. Using a sump with a protein skimmer is a lot easier. Again just my opinion. Good luck and welcome to the hobby! Be patient!!!!
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Old 08-10-2013, 11:37 AM   #3
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Well put true er fan. Sumps aren't necessary BUT they are really really useful. They help a lot with keeping the parameters in the right place.

I don't personally run a skimmer yet because a good one is fairly expensive. Instead on my 20g I have a refugium growing grape caulerpa and that controls my nutrient levels very very well.
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Old 08-10-2013, 11:39 AM   #4
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Sumps serve a couple purposes. They increase water volume, a place to put equipment and sometimes used for a time out for bad livestock. Imo having a sump makes your DT look a lot better. As for your canister filter, your gonna get a lot of different options. Some people will say no some will say its ok. If you keep the canister then plan on doing maintenance regularly to keep your nitrates down. If you know you can't or won't be able to do maintenance regularly then don't do the canister. Using a sump with a protein skimmer is a lot easier. Again just my opinion. Good luck and welcome to the hobby! Be patient!!!!
Thanks! the maintenance isn't an issue (what's 1 more when you already have 6 others, right!? Lol!), my biggest issue if I have no choice but a sump is space for it in the stand. This is my first "from scratch" salt setup, I have a 24 gallon nanocube that I'm really enjoying, but I need something bigger to play in. Haha
I think for now I will try to stick with my canister(unless I find some info that really changes my mind), and get a "sump backup plan" together in case it isn't working for me.
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Old 08-10-2013, 11:42 AM   #5
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Well put true er fan. Sumps aren't necessary BUT they are really really useful. They help a lot with keeping the parameters in the right place.

I don't personally run a skimmer yet because a good one is fairly expensive. Instead on my 20g I have a refugium growing grape caulerpa and that controls my nutrient levels very very well.
What is the purpose of the refugiums? (This one I haven't done any research on yet so I apologize.) is this the one that you need to drill your tank for?
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Old 08-10-2013, 11:45 AM   #6
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What is the purpose of the refugiums? (This one I haven't done any research on yet so I apologize.) is this the one that you need to drill your tank for?
Refugiums are there to grow things. In my case I have macro algae in there for nutrient export as well as a fair amount of live rock rubble for additional nitrate export and pod growth. You don't need to drill your tank, there are plenty of HOB overflows out there but they aren't quite as reliable as a drilled overflow.
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Old 08-10-2013, 11:52 AM   #7
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Refugiums are there to grow things. In my case I have macro algae in there for nutrient export as well as a fair amount of live rock rubble for additional nitrate export and pod growth. You don't need to drill your tank, there are plenty of HOB overflows out there but they aren't quite as reliable as a drilled overflow.
Okay that's what I thought but I wasn't 100 percent sure. Thank you!
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