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Old 03-07-2004, 12:40 PM   #1
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New Setup Filter / LR question

Hey Folks. I just bough a 90 gallon aquarium from a friend of mine and I'm planning on starting a saltwater fish only. I've got experience with freshwater tanks but zilch with saltwater.

So, here's my first question. The tank came with a Rena Filstar XP2. I looked online and found that this is for use in tanks up to 75 gallons. But then after doing some reading here it seems that Live Rock can take the place of some filtration if I'm not mistaken. So, I'm curious if I'll need to ditch the XP2 and get a filter large enough for my 90 gallon tank or if I can use the XP2 and just get some live rock to go with it. If that's the case then how much live rock will I need?

Still reading everything I can get my hands on before I even start with the trying to set it up and go through the cycling process. Thanks for any information you can provide.
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Old 03-07-2004, 01:29 PM   #2
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Quote:
The tank came with a Rena Filstar XP2
Not needed IMO unless you just want ot use it for water circulation.

Quote:
But then after doing some reading here it seems that Live Rock can take the place of some filtration
It can become the basis of your filtration if added in proper quantities. At that point your FO tank becomes FOWLR. If you want to use LR as your basis for filtration then you should shoot for a minimum of 100-140lbs of rock. For your best deal look online to get it vs paying the crazy $6+/lb at your LFS.

I also would like to encourage you to look at our saltwater library linked from the above links. There are a few really good books for those starting out. One of them is called "The Conscientious Marine Aquarist" by Robert M. Fenner
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Old 03-07-2004, 01:48 PM   #3
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Thanks fishfreek. I think my wife would kill me if I started out with those costs Would it be possible to use the filter and just start with like maybe 50 lbs of live rock? Would the 2 work together that way?

And thanks for the info on what to read, I'll be starting on that today.
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Old 03-07-2004, 02:21 PM   #4
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Well the secret is to get your wife involved. Once she is involved the $ spent will not be as big an issue. I have to fight to keep my wife from buying $80 fish. Infact the most expensive fish I have are all her favorates.

Getting the rock online will save a good bit. You could pickup 100lbs oline for less than $350 or close to it.

If budget requires you buy in small amounts and bulid up over time thats fine aswell. YOu could get base rock (simular to live rock but less attractive) and build up your rock amount in the tank and then top it with some nice decorative live rock. The base will become nice looking over time.

If you do this then yes you will want something to suplment your live rock filter until you ahve ample amounts.

Dont forget a good skimmer aswell.
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Old 03-07-2004, 08:11 PM   #5
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ya my mom was not so fond of me spending all of my pay check at the fish store but now that i let her pick out some corals and teaching her all about this she is vary happy that i spend all this money so she has a cool tank in her house. and i think she is getting to the point of buying me fish and such so i have some thing swuimming in the tank.
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Old 03-07-2004, 08:39 PM   #6
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Thanks again, been reading most of the day now but still much to digest. My next question concerns lighting. I know for full reef systems I'd need special lighting but I'll put that off for when I get more experience. What type of lighting does a FOWLR system need? The light that came with the tank is just a standard 40w light and I'm assuming that's not going to cut it
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Old 03-08-2004, 10:15 AM   #7
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wcsoft,

I'm still getting my feet wet in this as well, but my understanding is for LR, without corals, 2-3 watts/gal is needed and regular fluorescents are OK. I'm sure you'll be much more information from others, but I just got my LR from liverocks.com and am now looking to upgrade the standard lighting (20W) that came with the tank.

You'll find this forum quite helpful and supportive!

Good luck,

Jeff
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Old 03-08-2004, 10:22 AM   #8
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For FOWLR you probably would want at a minimum two NO bulbs. The live rock will not die with out alot of light but it also wont grow the nice corline algae at that low light level nor will any macro algae on the rock or any possible coral fragments on the rock grow.

Lighting can be the most expensive part of the tank so its good to plan out what you want well in advance of the acutal purchase.
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Old 03-08-2004, 10:39 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wcsoft
I know for full reef systems I'd need special lighting but I'll put that off for when I get more experience.
i know from experience that planning like this gets expensive quick, i started like you bought just what i needed, then i needed a csl with moonlighting( 250), then i needed metal halide , so i would go with the best lighting that you can afford so that you dont spend more in the long run, i got lucky when i upgraded to metal halide i used my csl for the antics, but good luck with all.
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Old 03-08-2004, 10:42 AM   #10
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darien from http://www.captivereefs.com/captivereefs/index.asp, can get you some deals on closeouts of the custom sea life fixtures (csl), and he gives aquarium advice members 6% discount so give him a shout and he can hook you up
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