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Old 08-05-2011, 03:17 PM   #1
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New 29 Gallon Tank Setup

Hey All,

So I'm new to saltwater and so is my husband. I am going to be setting up the 29 gallon tank this Friday to surprise him for his birthday when he gets home (Yay!). I originally bought the Aqueon 29 gallon deluxe kit but after extensive reading for a couple of weeks I have seen that I should upgrade the filter and that the heater is not all that great but it will do (I've heard that you have to keep it higher than it really says so we'll keep an eye on that).

On my way back from the doc today I stopped in at the LFS in that town and had a little chat with the employee there. He was extremely nice but after reading everything I have I had a pretty good idea about what was needed to run a fish and coral tank. But now I am totally confused so I have a few questions for you guys! So, he told me that to have coral and fish in a 29 gallon tank will be literally impossible to maintain, is this true? Because I have seen on this forum that people have done it! At this I got a little worried so I asked what he thought I might need for the tank. That's when he said I should just stick with everything I have in the deluxe kit. When I asked if I should get power heads for moving the water, he told me that you don't need them if I plan on upgrading the filter. Is this true? I saw a clip of what can happen to fish if they don't have a good flow in the tank and how much stress it puts on them. I don't want to be in that position! So here is a little list of the things I have so far now:

-29 gallon tank (30"x13"x19")
-30" hood and light system the tank came with (going to upgrade later when the tank is established more)
-100 watt heater that came with the tank
-upgrade to Aqueon QuietFlow55 filter (for sizes 45-60 gallon tank)
-Instant Ocean
-CaribSea Sand (20lbs) (It was all they had besides this rock coral base that I was not too fond of, I really wanted to go for the sandy bottom even though he recommended not to because it is harder to clean (?))
-Two test kits (Nitrate and Ammonia)


So I think my main questions to sum this up and not be a total confusion to anyone are:

-Is this enough for a setup?
-Do I need the power heads or is the filter really enough?
-Is it possible to have coral and fish in the 29 gallon tank?
-If I bought bottled water would that be good for the Instant Ocean?


Thanks guys so much in advance! Any thoughts, comments, answers will be well appreciated. I thought I had it all sorted out until today with my little visit to the LFS.
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Old 08-06-2011, 04:09 PM   #2
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no. it's not true. you can keep a reef in any size tank.
and no, if you are going to keep corals, you are going to want good water movement, so i would suggest a couple power heads.
you will not be cleaning your sand bed if the granules are small. detritus (uneaten food and fish poop) will not collect as easily if the sand grains are smaller (something slightly larger than sugar sized would be my choice), and you have adequate flow.
you are going to need quite a few more test kits when you are ready to try corals, along with better lighting, as you stated.
you want to use reverse osmosis or distilled water. it might be in your best interest to invest in a R.O.D.I. unit. the water quality is going to be more important when you are ready to add corals.
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Old 08-06-2011, 06:02 PM   #3
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Listen to Mr. X Everything I have learned here tells me that his advice is very good. Two things I would add....

First, I have heard that smaller tanks are harder to care for so do all the research you can and follow the advice you get here.

Second, be very careful of the info you get from LFS. In the 4 weeks that I have been working on my first tank I have questioned 6 LFS and with the exception of one they have all given me bad info. They want to sell things. People on this site just want to have fun in this hobby and part of that is helping others.

Good luck. (by the way, my tank is a B-Day present to my wife).
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Since my tank is a birthday present to my wife, everything I spend going forward is just an extension of my love for her right?
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Old 08-07-2011, 06:24 PM   #4
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Thanks guys. I so appreciate all the help. When I was talking to him at the store at first I was thinking, ok he's just not knowing what he is talking about but then he started telling me stories and saying he would sell me lots of expensive things if thats what I wanted even though I didnt need them so I got a bit side tracked! Does anyone have any recomondations on the kind of powerheads that would be good for a 29 gallon? Also what about a sump? I've been reading about it and its sounding really good to me. Thanks again!!!
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Old 08-07-2011, 06:38 PM   #5
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it all depends what you are willing to spend. i would love a vortech on a 29 gallon, but they are crazy expensive. hydor koralia are ok, seio prop pumps are good, aqueon makes a power head now that's supposed to be decent, as well as coralvue's "high seas" pumps. take your pick.
a sump is good to have, but you can do without it. again, what are you willing to spend?
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