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Old 10-29-2002, 05:16 PM   #1
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I have about a 40 gallon tank it might be 50. Anyways i would like to have a reef tank is that the same as fish with LR? Alls i have is the tank and i have been reading different boards for a couple days. I don't have any good LFS around here so i cant ask them questions. I was wondering if you can give me some advice about what equipment I would need and good places to get it. I have been hearing things about LS and many people saying getting argonnite (sp?) sand then mixing with LS. What kind of Ratio for that? Thanks for all your help in advance.

Jennifer
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Old 10-29-2002, 09:14 PM   #2
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Darkshde.........You are starting in much the same place I did about a month ago. My suggestion is to read as many of the older threads on this board as you can find the time to read and join in chat tomorrow, Wednesday, night. I've learned more from reading and chatting with the other members here than I would ever have dreamed of getting from a LFS. The #1 thing I can say that I've learned is to plan and research everything before doing it. And ask, ask, and keep asking questions. Its work for me.
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Old 10-29-2002, 09:34 PM   #3
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Yes ask many many questons. When you ask them if you don't understand ask why that happens. It does you NO good to be told somethuign but not grasp the concept behind it.

Quote:
Anyways i would like to have a reef tank is that the same as fish with LR?
A Reef tank is simply a "style" of a tank. When I first started I never understood this either. It means having Live rock Live sand (or other substrate I.E. CC) wiht inverts/corals. .. Other terms you might see is FOWLR which simple means Fish Only With Live Rock. Also FO which means Fish Only.

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I don't have any good LFS around here so i cant ask them questions

Lol, I know the feeling. My LFS is not even worth talkin bout. My suggestion is to find a decent one even if you have to travel 45 minutes It will pay off in teh long run.

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I was wondering if you can give me some advice about what equipment I would need and good places to get it. I have been hearing things about LS and many people saying getting argonnite (sp?) sand then mixing with LS. What kind of Ratio for that?

Post any specific questions you have to equipment. If you are uncertain bout what a sump does ask it. I and everyone here will be happy to explain. Equipment in general is very broad and you will recieve many many different setup recomendations/demands. when I started I was tol dI need this and that to get going. In reality I did not. If you would like recomendation of setups just and I can give you my 2 cents and I am sure so will everyone else.

LS is live sand and you can mix it with arigonite (sp) sand... If you get Live rock and just "dead" sand the sand will become alive over time. I am not positive on seeding wiht LS so I will leave that upt o someone else. I myself just had a DEAD DSB(deep sand bed) and had LR which made the sand live over time...



I hope thi shelped you if you need anymore info just ask... Good luck.


Jacob
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Old 10-30-2002, 09:00 AM   #4
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I recommend for anyone new to the saltwater hobby to read "The New Marine Aquarium", by Michael Paletta. It is a small easy to understand book for beginners. It did wonders for me when I started into the hobby.
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Old 10-30-2002, 10:14 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by michealprater
I recommend for anyone new to the saltwater hobby to read "The New Marine Aquarium", by Michael Paletta. It is a small easy to understand book for beginners. It did wonders for me when I started into the hobby.
YEP. I second that. In fact its on our recommended reading list in the Getting started forum. That was my first saltwater book and I must say I felt it was very clearly written and had some more advanced tips for the bigginer aswell.

One thing the book talks about is a CC substrate and does not really go into a DSB. I started out with CC but converted to DSB.
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Old 10-30-2002, 12:41 PM   #6
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Another good book is "The Conscientious Marine Aquarist" by Robert Fenner.
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Old 10-30-2002, 04:01 PM   #7
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The Robert Fenner book is great. I've read it. Although I think Paletta's book is the best for beginners.
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Old 10-30-2002, 05:00 PM   #8
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Quote:
was wondering if you can give me some advice about what equipment I would need and good places to get it. I have been hearing things about LS and many people saying getting argonnite (sp?) sand then mixing with LS. What kind of Ratio for that? Thanks for all your help in advance.
Well as far as equipment we can break this down into three main sections.

Lighting

Circulation

Heating


As for Lighting, you should have a good idea if you want a fish only tank, fish with live rock, or a reef tank. Once you have that then we can get down to selecting the proper lighting. For a fish only tank the lights that come with a standard tank will work fine. Fish don't need any real special light except to show off their colors to us. Fish only with live rock would be simular to a fish only setup but maybe have a double light fixture or maybe some low power compact florecents. The additional light will show off the fish's colors but also assist with the nice colored coralline growth on the live rocks. You also might end up with some macro algae (good) or maybe even some small corals on the live rocks.. For a Reef tank you need much more light than a fish only system. The general rule of thumb is 3-5 watts per gal so for a 50 gal tank that is 150-250 watts of light. Depending on the depth you might need more than that. Lighting options for a reef tank would be VHO, Power Compact florecents, or Metal Halide. There is a link in here some place on lighting.

Circulation, you should shoot for 1 flow rate (10 times the volume of your tank) in your tank. So if you have a 50 gal tank then 500gph at a minimum should be moving in your system. You can achieve this by use of Power Heads, or the use of a sump and a water pump.

Heating, rather simple but important if you live any where other than a warm climent. Size your heater based what you usually keep your house temp at. I like to suggest a temp range for the tank of 82F. For a 50 gal tank I would go with a 250W or a 300W heater. Some might suggest two smaller heaters.

As far as filtration, If you go with live rock and live sand then about the only other filtration item you might want would be a skimmer. I like the prizm skimmer for a tank your size. If you go live rock you will need 1 - 1 1/2lbs/gal and a 3-4" sand bed. You don't need a 100% live sand sand bed to start out with. You could use as little as 2-3" of dry sand and 1" of live sand on top. Over time all of the sand will become live and rich with bacteria and other sand dwelling critters.
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Old 10-30-2002, 06:22 PM   #9
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Quote:
Some might suggest two smaller heaters


I suggest 2 heaters for a simple reason. If one heater goes hay wire then then it alone cannot rise the tank temp to boil the fish. While if one goes out the otehr can keep it Bareable until you can replace the fish. kind of a safety precaution.


The key to this to heaters SMALLER then the size you Need.. 2 heaters of the size you need is pointless except if one goes out it can keep your tank at the right temperature.. but if one goes haywire then it alone can raise your tank very high.




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