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Old 03-08-2011, 09:45 AM   #1
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first time, fowler then reef. need help

i got a 55g tank i can use if i find a new home for its inhabitants, it has 1x54w hagen glo with life glo bulb currently with 2 hob filters...or...
a new 41g cube-ish (osaka 155 set) tank that = 24l-18w-24h with hagen glo with 2 x24w life glo bulbs, it also has fluval 205 canister filter. i want to start mt first saltwater setup, with one of these, but... i dont think i have alot of room in either stand for sumps(maybe make a small one..)
but wondering if either of these would make a decent saltwater start for fowler and move up to reef later? what do you think, what additional items would help?(skimmer. 4sure) thank you for helping me, i really want to start off right, and will take time to get it right. thanx again

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Old 03-08-2011, 11:00 AM   #2
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I would get rid of the canister filter. They tend to do more harm I'n the long run. If I were u I would get about 40 to 50 lbs of rock. Look into making your own. It's way cheaper And u can make them however you want. Also I would recommend doing a sump. If there is no room u can place it next to the tank or behind the tank. I have a 60 gal tank with a 10 gal diy sump that sits right next to it. U will also need a few powerheads to circulate the water and pos a wave maker but that is optional. A hydrometer or a refractometer... Then salt. That basically all u need. Oh yeah sand as a substrate. Look into a Deep sand bed.( it's recommended that u use it I'n a sump. Although you can use it I'n the display tank.) well that is my 2 cents worth lol good luck.

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Old 03-08-2011, 11:08 AM   #3
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thanx for the quick reply! you mean make my own sump, right? i have half of the stand i could use either for a canister or homemade sump...i think its about 11.5''l x 15''w x 22+''h in the 41g....the 55g has about 13''l x 18''w.
the 55g is probly better of a tank than a cube- like tank. ? idk the 55 is already set up, the 41g cube is brand new
i have a hydrometer already
extras : 205 can. filter
fluval tronic 150w heater
instant ocean salt - need more
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Old 03-08-2011, 12:36 PM   #4
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I too would drop the cannister filter, though many use with out issue. It's a question of maintenance to keep them clean all the time.

Home made rock will never come close the porosity of Pacific coral rock, either base or LR.
If the hydrometer is a plastic swing arm type, get a refractometer. The cheap plastic hydrometers are inconsistent and therefore inaccurate.

I'm not sure where the idea of putting a DSB in a sump came from, but it's a bad idea. There is just not enough surface area to do any good as far as nitrate reduction. Now if like some your sump is the size of a kiddie pool in the basement, then I understand. Perhaps that's where the idea of a remote DSB came from.

Good luck with your new adventure.
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Old 03-08-2011, 12:51 PM   #5
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thanks for your advice. i guess i need to build a small sump, maybe get a hob skimmer, and use alot of live rock and sand? what about live rock in the canister filter media trays? how much more light is needed for a nem if i wanted something like that for a clownfish. i kinda like the reef idea cuz the small tank size, but that is later, after i get the hang of things.
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Old 03-08-2011, 04:28 PM   #6
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Get extra thermometers and powerheads for mixing water. Consider an auto top off unit for evaporation. You should get selcon or some kind of vitamin for the food. As well as garlic guard.

Nems need a lot of light. I would think you'd need to upgrade to T5's to be safe

A quarantine tank setup cam go a long way to keeping your tank healthy. It's cheap an easy to setup.

Get a backup main heater in case your primary fails. A heater for water change water. Extra tubing.

Air hose tubing for drip acclimation and a airline valve to control flow.

Hydrometers suck. Invest in a $50 refractometer.

125 gal mixed REEF
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Old 03-08-2011, 04:53 PM   #7
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I ran eheim canisters on my last tank with really good results. It was annoying to keep them clean, but I never got around to finishing the sump. They were meant to be temporary, and ended up being permanent.

Just two cents from someone who used one.
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Old 03-09-2011, 07:49 AM   #8
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this tank will be in my living room so i dont want a sump being an eyesore. the can will fit under the tank but a small sump would too, if i can build a small one. i already have 2x24w t5 ho hagen glo, life glos. should i get a tank mounted metal halide, like 150w. okay need powerheaDS AND REFRactometer..anything else?
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Old 03-09-2011, 09:44 AM   #9
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This is an idea for a sump hide it in another piece of furniture. Take the back off an enclosed end table, place it next to your tank and hide the sump in there. I got a used sump for less than I could have made one just look around on the forums and craigs list.

The canister filter might be ok for a little while as in a couple of weeks but within a month you will could start having problems.

The most important pieces of equipment I have is my refractometer and test kits.
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Old 03-09-2011, 09:51 AM   #10
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aHHH, YES. i have a end table thay holds my dish reciever and a lamp next to the tank. maybe i could put a sump under the glass top. i would rather hAve it in my stand, though. it would be small, like 5-10 gallons maybe, is that okay?. why would the canister start giving me problems?

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