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Old 06-21-2003, 06:10 PM   #1
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coverting freshwater to saltwater fish only

Hi -

I've got a 135-gallon freshwater tank with redbellied piranhas, and I'm thinking about making the jump to saltwater. But first I'm wondering all that I'd need.

Right now I run a rena xp3 canister filter with foam, activated charcoal, biochem zorb, nitra-zorb, water softener pillow, ammonia remover, a bunch of biomax, and 2 microfiltration pads. I've also got two 402 powerheads with quick filters containing biomax.

My substrate is tahitian moon black sand. And I run 3 bubble-walls.

I know I'll have to get the ph up, so I'm thinking that I'll have to mix my sand with some crushed coral. And I guess I could put a sack of crushed coral in my filter as well.

I'm thinking that I'll have to remove the ammonia remover, water softener pillow, and nitra-zorb.

Is a protein skimmer necessary? I'm thinking about starting off with just fish and some coral decorations, and will build towards getting some live rock for a reef tank in the future.

Can I still run my bubble walls?

Will a saltwater tank be much more challenging than converting to a cichlid tank? Pros/Cons?

Any suggestions/comments on converting to saltwater would be great! And feel free to suggest types of fish as well...

Thanks :lol:
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Old 06-21-2003, 09:26 PM   #2
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Quote:
I know I'll have to get the ph up, so I'm thinking that I'll have to mix my sand with some crushed coral. And I guess I could put a sack of crushed coral in my filter as well.
More than likely the salt will take care of the ph. It sould buffer it to about 8.2-8.4, with regular water changes, you shouldn't have a problem maintaining it.

Quote:
I'm thinking that I'll have to remove the ammonia remover, water softener pillow, and nitra-zorb.
More than likely you will want to run the cannister with nothing but a biological filtering media and occasionally run carbon.

Quote:
Is a protein skimmer necessary? I'm thinking about starting off with just fish and some coral decorations, and will build towards getting some live rock for a reef tank in the future.

A skimmer is not absolutely necessary, but it is helpful at removing pollutants before they have a chance to make it to your biological filter, so indirectly it will lessen your bioload and help you maintain better water quality.

Quote:
Can I still run my bubble walls?
While there is no harm in running them, it is not recommended in saltwater. They will cause alot of spray and salt creep on the tank, some fish find the bubbles annooying as well.

Quote:
Will a saltwater tank be much more challenging than converting to a cichlid tank? Pros/Cons?

It is the difference between SW and FW. IMO, a cichlid tank will be easier and more forgiving, but converting to saltwater is not out of reach. The biggest difference will be unlearning some FW things, learning th SW things and of course there is the bite you take in the wallet.
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Old 06-21-2003, 10:35 PM   #3
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what about a DSB?

Thanks for your help

What about a DSB? What is a DSB really? How deep is deep, and can it just be in one area of the tank? If I use my sand to make a bar in the middle for a DSB, and have crushed coral more in the corners and the back, would that be feasible?

And what about rocks to use as dividers, can I keep using my slate? Or can I pick up rocks from the beach (I'm in Victoria, BC, Canada, on the Pacific)?


Thanks again
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Old 06-22-2003, 11:32 AM   #4
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What about a DSB? What is a DSB really? How deep is deep, and can it just be in one area of the tank?
Here are a couple links that might help you out...
http://www.rshimek.com/reef/sediment.htm
http://www.seabay.org/art_plenums_part1.htm
http://www.seabay.org/art_plenums_part2.htm
http://www.aquariumadvice.com/viewto...507&highlight=

Quote:
If I use my sand to make a bar in the middle for a DSB, and have crushed coral more in the corners and the back, would that be feasible?
Possibly, I'll let someone else try to answer that for you, if it isn't already answered in one of the links I gave.

Quote:
And what about rocks to use as dividers, can I keep using my slate?
slate is not recommended in a SW tank. Most try to use a calcium carbonate base rock like lace rock or dead base rock.

Quote:
Or can I pick up rocks from the beach (I'm in Victoria, BC, Canada, on the Pacific)?
So long as they are not from a highly populated part of the beach or near a commerical area where they would be subject to lots of polution and the rockes are properly cleaned before use, it is probably OK.
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