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Old 11-21-2002, 08:32 PM   #1
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filtration question

I'm new to SW and had a question about filtration. I have an emperor 400 filter on a 55 gal tank. I need to get a protein skimmer but i don't know what to do. Would it be better to get a hang on skimmer, or to get a wet dry / skimmer combo or to get a separate wet dry and a separate skimmer. thanks
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Old 11-21-2002, 08:55 PM   #2
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what kind of budget are we talkin?
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Old 11-21-2002, 09:00 PM   #3
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Just looking for the best set-up.
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Old 11-21-2002, 09:06 PM   #4
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i only have experience with a hang on the back skimmer by seaclone. i really am satisfied with its performance. plus, for the money it was a great deal. im not a big fan of wet/dry filters as ive heard them called nitrate factories. i had one once and got rid of it cause i found with a good amount of live sand and live rock, and a skimmer the need for mechanical filtration is minimal. i only have a penguin 330 bio wheel on my 100 gallon reef. of course, i have 300 lbs of live rock crammed into my aquarium.
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Old 11-22-2002, 09:52 AM   #5
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I prefer a wet/dry and a skimmer that can either go into the sump or next to it under the tank. If you are going to have a lot of live rock and a deep sand bed then I would only use a sump (way more room and plenty of other uses) the live rock and DSB will be your main filtration. Besides sumps are much cheaper than a complete wet/dry. In fact you could make a sump out of a rubbermaid container from Wal-mart (say 15gal) and then spend your money on a really good skimmer system.

P.S. I run my 90 gal Reef this way.
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Old 11-22-2002, 05:21 PM   #6
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not sure on what the difference between a sump and a wet dry or how to set up a sump
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Old 11-22-2002, 05:44 PM   #7
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sump

A sump is basically another tank under the main tank that provides a place to put all the equip such as heater, skimmer, carbon bag, ect... A wet/dry can be a sump. A wet/dry is a filter that uses bio media (bioballs, cellpore, plastic shavings, ect..) to remove ammonia/nitrite. It can be incorporated into the sump design or hang on the back of the tank. Read this for more info on sumps in general: http://www.aquariumadvice.com/viewtopic.php?t=20
In a typical SW tank, be it reef or FOwLR (fish only with live rock), a sump is used to house epuip and to provide a) water flow to the main tank b) increase the total water capacity. The current trend, and it seems to work very well, is to have about 1 1/2 lbs of LR per gallon and a sand bed that is at least 4" deep. The live rock holds the bacteria to remove the ammonia/nitrite and, to a lesser degree, nitrates. The sand bed (DSB) has the bacteria to remove nitrates. This is accomplished because the lower area of the DSB has very little oxygen or is hypoxic. The bacteria that live in this environment feed on the nitrate. The problem with wet/dry's is that they are so efficient at converting ammonia that the system often quickly builds up an excess of nitrate. Please don't hesitate to ask any other questions you might have about this. We will help in any way possible.
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Old 11-22-2002, 06:00 PM   #8
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another link

Here is another link that explains wet/dry vs sump. It's an article on fishfreek's page.
http://www.vafishfreek.com/wetdrynsump.html
Logan J
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Old 11-23-2002, 07:21 PM   #9
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so if I set up a sump and get a protein skimmer to put in it would i still use my emperor filter as a "hang on the back" filter or could i also put that in the sump or is it not needed at all?

i was looking around the net and found a couple of DIY sump pages. they all had separate "areas" to the system. correct me if im wrong but all that is not necessary, all you need is a "water storage area"

thanks for all the help so far
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Old 11-23-2002, 07:29 PM   #10
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so if I set up a sump and get a protein skimmer to put in it would i still use my emperor filter as a "hang on the back" filter or could i also put that in the sump or is it not needed at all?

i was looking around the net and found a couple of DIY sump pages. they all had separate "areas" to the system. correct me if im wrong but all that is not necessary, all you need is a "water storage area"

thanks for all the help so far
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