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Old 07-19-2006, 08:38 AM   #11
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i just got some powerheads in my tank, and i would really recommend it. they're not that expensive, and they make the tank more "real" compared to the ocean. and about the live rock, you want at least 1.5 lbs per gallon. some people recommend up to 2 lbs per gallon. i would think that about 80 lbs total would be ideal for your tank. just be careful, without the right amount of rock in the tank, it might not help your cycle any. i made that mistake and only had a little bit of live rock in my tank and thought it would help. it only wasted my time in the long run. good luck though.
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Old 07-19-2006, 11:41 AM   #12
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Isecond the idea of a good book. You have a lot of basic questions and would be well served by reading one of those excellent references.

Answers:
1. how many lbs of liverock is optimal for a 55 gallon tank?
Depends. anywhere from 50-100 lbs, depending on the rock.

2. do i need powerheads? and which ones would be good?
You do need water movement. Powerheads are a cheap way of doing that. I would get 4 Maxijet 900s.

3. What are some good starter fish and cleaners to get me started once the water is stabilized?
Difficult question. Aggressive? Community? clowns, blennies, dwarf angels...all are good...not necessarily good together, though!

4. Optimal ph is 8.2? whats the lowest and highest safe range?
I say 8.0-8.4. Stability is key here.

5. and optimal specific gravity 1.020 to 1.022? Higher. 1.023-1.025

6. Is a protein skimmer absolutely necessary? I won't be able to buy one for 2 weeks .
I say yes. Makes things easier. Depends on bioload really and how diligent you are with maintenance.

HTH.
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Old 07-19-2006, 12:06 PM   #13
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Thanks for all the answers, im going to order online so i will order my protein skimmer and powerheads online. I also have to order a saltewater master kit.
and definitely some books!

Would it benefit me more to buy all the live rock at once or start with a small amount and build it up?

I am definitely going to go for a more community tank to start with and i want a very low bioload with as little amount of aggression as possible. Ive read that damsels are good starter fish...
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Old 07-19-2006, 12:46 PM   #14
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finally making the switch!

Quote:
Ive read that damsels are good starter fish...
Most of them. They are hardy, but some can become agressive as they grow older. Plus, the also become a pain to try to catch once you have your LR and clean up crew in the tank. Here is a nice site to give you a few ideas for starter fish (other than just damsels):
http://www.liveaquaria.com/product/categ.cfm?pCatId=15

I would recommend you not cycle your tank with livestock. You can go the more humane and cheaper route, with a raw un-flavored cocktail shrimp, from your local grocery.

As for the previous advice from the other folks, sounds good to me!

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WELCOME TO AA!!!!

sorry, forgot to add that...
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Good reading about:
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Old 07-19-2006, 01:05 PM   #15
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my tank is already cycled and thanks for the fish advice.

Is it better to add the liverock first or the fish first?
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Old 07-19-2006, 02:14 PM   #16
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I added my LR first. I feel it gives the new folks a place to hide after I acclimate them....
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Old 07-19-2006, 06:00 PM   #17
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ok thanks. I think that pretty much answers all of my questions for right now... thanks again so much for all of you for answering my questions! I will put in my order next week for my protein skimmer and powerheads and stuff. And i think were gonna go to the fish store today and purchase some live rock... its $6/lb i saw it cheaper online but shipping prices were outrageous! So again thank you all so much for all the help and info.
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Old 07-19-2006, 06:12 PM   #18
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Quote:
ts $6/lb
That's a pretty fair price for a LFS. Mine charges $8 and I have seen up to $12.
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Old 07-19-2006, 06:13 PM   #19
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yeah petco had it for 9.99lb... very expensive



ok, sorry to add another question but i was looking on ordering some liverock online becuase at petsolutions it is 3.53/lb (including shipping) and i was going to order the 45lb box to get started. I was just wondering if the "Fiji premium live rock" was a good choice and then building on that with some peices from the fish store.

Also i don't see any articles on "deep sand bed" i heard someone mention it wasn't necessary... what exactly are the pros and cons of a "deep sand bed" I think i have about 3" of sand substrate (two 50lb bags).
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Old 07-21-2006, 11:42 AM   #20
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The net is flush with debate over the benefits of a dsb. Here is a good article by Anthony Calfo.

http://www.wetwebmedia.com/deepsandbeds.htm
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