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Old 06-22-2004, 07:32 PM   #1
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my list of newbie questions. please answer

hi everyone. i'm starting out a 65gallon 36x18x24. i have a 2x250metal halide canopy with pulse start ballasts and dual fans.

here are my questions...

- i bought an acrylic guard/uv filter. this seals the canopy completely. am i supposed to cut the acrylic to have some breathing air or the fans will do the job?

- what bulbs do you recommend? two of the same? i plan on having some soft corals and sps/lps/anemone/clams in the future.

- will the 2x250 MH be too much for soft corals? enough for a rose anemone?

- i plan on building a sump/fuge. the problem is space. if i have to use a 10gallon tank, will that be okay or too small?

- i have seen people talk about dimming/moonlights. are these neccesary? how is dimming done and can i do it to my canopy?

- i've already purchased a 802powerhead. how many more should i use and what flow rates?

- if i decide to use base/dead rock as the base of my rock piles, will it ever turn or be as effective as the live rock i purchase?

this is a list of dumb q's i've compiled since i started my research about 4months ago. thanks for putting up with the n00bness. be kind! TIA
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Old 06-22-2004, 07:47 PM   #2
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Re: my list of newbie questions. please answer

Quote:
Originally Posted by dropped
- i bought an acrylic guard/uv filter. this seals the canopy completely. am i supposed to cut the acrylic to have some breathing air or the fans will do the job?
If you have fans pushing or pulling air through the canopy, they will be more than enough.


Quote:
- what bulbs do you recommend? two of the same? i plan on having some soft corals and sps/lps/anemone/clams in the future.
This is the question that we all debate. Here is the problem. All bulbs have what is called a PAR rating and a K rating. Par is the amount of Photosynthetic Avaliable Radiation. This is the "food" for the plants and what allows them to grow. The K rating describes what temperature the bulb burns at and, as a result, what color it will be. Look at it this way. Which is hotter, a blue flame or a white flame.

Bulbs work much the same way. The higher the k rating the blue'er the bulb. The lower the k the more yellow the bulb.

Sunlight would be considered a 55k. The lower the k rating the more growth you will see. The higher the k rating, the better color the tank and corals will have. Most of us dont like our water to look yellow so we opt for somewhere in the middle. 110 is a nice middle ground. 120's have a nice blue look to them.

So you really have to decide where you fall on that scale. Do you want growth, or really cool color to the corals and the water, or some where in the middle?

As far as brand..I would reccomend the XM's.

Quote:
- will the 2x250 MH be too much for soft corals? enough for a rose anemone?
Softies--It will depend on the depth of the tank. IMO, yes..its too much.

Rose--It is my understanding that they require less light than the others, but in general, 250m/h will support an anemone.

Quote:
- i plan on building a sump/fuge. the problem is space. if i have to use a 10gallon tank, will that be okay or too small?
That would be fine. I would suggest looking for a rubber maid tub that might fit under the tank. They are very easy to drill and the plumbing can be mounted to the sides if needed.

Quote:
- i have seen people talk about dimming/moonlights. are these neccesary? how is dimming done and can i do it to my canopy?
Moonlights are not nessisary at all, but are a nice addition. They are for viewing the tank at night. Red, while not the most natural color, is the best for moon lights because fish cannot see the red spectrum...so they think its still dark.

I would be leary about putting a dimmer on a m/h bulb.

Quote:
- i've already purchased a 802powerhead. how many more should i use and what flow rates?
Reef tanks need to be turned a minimum of 10 times an hour. Take the gph rating on the pump and divide it by the # of gallons you have in your tank. This will tell you how many times your tank is turning over in one hour.

Quote:
- if i decide to use base/dead rock as the base of my rock piles, will it ever turn or be as effective as the live rock i purchase?
Yes. The bacteria can spread very quickly if given the right temp and a food source. When I say quickly, I mean multiplying its self x30 in an half hour.

Quote:
this is a list of dumb q's i've compiled since i started my research about 4months ago. thanks for putting up with the n00bness. be kind! TIA
Naahh.. I think they are exactly the kinds of questions more rookies should ask!

Check out our site for more research info. I have tried to cover as many topics as possible and organize them for people of every skill level. Let me know if you dont see a topic your interested in and I'll see what I can do about finding some info on the topic and posting it.

HTH,
Squishy
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Old 06-22-2004, 08:02 PM   #3
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Looks like Squishy covered it.
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Old 06-22-2004, 08:05 PM   #4
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As always!
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Old 06-22-2004, 08:16 PM   #5
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SquishyFish,

Thank you so much for answering my questions! very helpful! I decided to go for the 2x250 instead of the 2x175 because of the depth of the tank. it's 24" tall. if i place some soft corals at the bottom, would that be okay? or still pushing it? and would 2 10k bulbs be okay?

also, regarding the tank turnover, should i include my possible sump and skimmer into the calculations? or just the powerheads? thank you
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Old 06-22-2004, 08:23 PM   #6
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also, would i need a chiller? i sure hope not. i've looked at the prices on some 8O just crazy
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Old 06-22-2004, 08:53 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dropped
SquishyFish,

Thank you so much for answering my questions! very helpful! I decided to go for the 2x250 instead of the 2x175 because of the depth of the tank. it's 24" tall. if i place some soft corals at the bottom, would that be okay? or still pushing it? and would 2 10k bulbs be okay?
Some will do fine, others will not. Shrooms should be okay, but other than that its kind of a case by case type thing.

The two 10k's would be excellent.

Quote:
also, regarding the tank turnover, should i include my possible sump and skimmer into the calculations? or just the powerheads? thank you
Turn over is usually considered water that is moved in, or out and back into the main tank. So, your power heads would count, and the pump in the over flow would count. But if you had a skimmer in the sump, it wouldnt. The reason is that the turn over deals with more than just oxygenating the water. The water movement inside the tank effects the # of dead spots, the amount of water that moves by a coral and from what direction. It has to do with how much water flows through the carbon in your sump. That make sense?
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Old 06-22-2004, 09:02 PM   #8
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thanks SquishyFish, crystal clear 8)
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