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Old 05-01-2003, 11:54 PM   #1
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Laying it on the line

I have been lurking and reading like crazy for the last couple of weeks and have even managed to interject a couple of dumb questions here and there. Now I am getting ready to start up my system I need to lay it on the line and hopefully get some good feedback before I make some mistakes I will regret.

My current system:
55Gal All Glass Aquarium
Aqua Clear 300 hang on tank pump/filter/carbon bag
Visitherm 200W heater
Substrate-55# of CaribSea Aragonite
BaseRock-40#
LiveRock-40# (planing but have not ordered yet)
Lighting- 2X40W flourescent bulbs

Questions:
1) Is using RO/DI water absolutely necessary or can I use tap water?
2) Is a protein skimmer necessary for a FOwLR system, especially in the beginning?
3) I realize I will have to upgrade the Aqua Clear 300 but should I just buy an additional Aqua Clear or thinking of using this for QT and buying a bigger model for display tank (something around 500gph).
4) Does a FOwLR system require a better lighting system? If so do I have to upgrade the entire hood( currently have the hood that came with the All Glass Aquarium)
5) Where is the best place to by Salt? Online or LFS?

My Goal is to get this system up and running and see how I do with the hobby but I do not want to spend a ton of money and overcommit myself before making sure I am going to stick with it.

Thanx in advance for the help and suggestions and for all the good discussion on the PrettyFishies thread. That will really help when I get to the cycling stage.
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Old 05-02-2003, 12:06 AM   #2
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Quote:
1) Is using RO/DI water absolutely necessary or can I use tap water?
Have you tested your tap water for chlorine and copper?
Quote:
2) Is a protein skimmer necessary for a FOwLR system, especially in the beginning?
If you keep a light bioload and do weekly water changes it is not.
Quote:
3) I realize I will have to upgrade the Aqua Clear 300 but should I just buy an additional Aqua Clear or thinking of using this for QT and buying a bigger model for display tank (something around 500gph).
You accually can just use this filter and pull the media out except for the carbon and just use it for current. If you have 1-2 lbs of live rock per gallon and a 4 -6 inch deep sand bed that should be all the filtration you need.
Quote:
4) Does a FOwLR system require a better lighting system? If so do I have to upgrade the entire hood( currently have the hood that came with the All Glass Aquarium)
The lighting will be fine if you are just going to have fish and live rock. If you ever plan to have corals you will have to upgrade though.
Quote:
5) Where is the best place to by Salt? Online or LFS?
I personally use my LFS, I dont know which is best.
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Old 05-02-2003, 12:44 AM   #3
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Quote:
Have you tested your tap water for chlorine and copper?
I have not tested but will neutralize chlorine with Prime. Not sure about copper content. Are these the two main areas of concern with tap water? Do you know if LFS usually has ability to test for this?

Quote:
You accually can just use this filter and pull the media out except for the carbon and just use it for current. If you have 1-2 lbs of live rock per gallon and a 4 -6 inch deep sand bed that should be all the filtration you need.
Thanx for the quick answers. Is 300gph enough current. Advise from LFS was that I need to turn the tank over at least 10x per hour.
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Old 05-02-2003, 10:05 AM   #4
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I would add a power head or 2 to increase your tank turnover to the previously recommended 10x per hour.

Brian
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Old 05-02-2003, 01:08 PM   #5
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I have not tested but will neutralize chlorine with Prime. Not sure about copper content. Are these the two main areas of concern with tap water? Do you know if LFS usually has ability to test for this?
Chlorine is really not the main concern because it disipates in 24 hours. (I would suggest making change and top off water 24 hours in advance anyway) Chloramines however, will not and you will want to make sure that Prime will handle Chloramines also... The Copper, most LFS's will not test for this..they are mainly concerned with your tank water, Ammonia, Nitrite, Nitrate and PH.

You can, however, buy a Copper test kit for about $10 at the LFS and you can test yur water that way... Hagen, RedSea, Salifert are just a few...
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