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Old 05-17-2005, 02:18 AM   #1
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Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Corona Ca.
Posts: 515
New to salt

I am getting ready to set up a saltwater FWLR tank. I plan the following:

1. 20 gal tank
2. 10 gal sump
3. Via Aqua Protein skimmer
4. 2 power heads
5. 25 lbs live rock
6. 20 lbs live sand
7. 130 watt power compact with moon lights

My questions are:
1. How large of power heads do I need?
2. With a 3/4 dia overflow, how large a pump should I have for return?
3. Should I put egg crate under the rock to keep it off of the glass?
4. Is 20 lbs of rock in the tank and 5 lbs in the sump about right?
5. Can you use ammonia to cycle the tank like you can in fresh water?
6. Should I use biospira or biomax to speed up the cycle?

Sorry to be so long winded. I have 8 fresh water tanks but this is a sudden attack of gotta have

Doran Hayes
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Old 05-17-2005, 10:33 AM   #2
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Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: Nebraska, USA
Posts: 6,703
1. You need a minimum of 200 gallons per hour turnover in that size tank. I suggest Maxi-jet brand powerheads
2. no clue
3. not necessary. in fact half the people will tell you to put the rock on the glass before you fill with sand, so the sand can't shift and let rocks tumble.
4. that's a good starting point. you might find you want more rock. 1-2lbs per gallon is the recommeneded range
5. yes, though many just toss in a dead cocktail shrimp or two, so they don't have to dose ammonia daily. die-off from the live rock also creates some ammonia
6. I wouldn't...but I put no faith in those kinds of products...not even Bio-Spira.

I wouldn't waste cash on live sand. LIve rock will seed the sand and make it live. YOu'd be wiser to get basic sugar-sized aragonite sand, and save a few bucks for more live rock, or other SW supplies.

Former advisor and planted tank geek...life's moved on though.
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Old 05-17-2005, 11:49 PM   #3
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Join Date: Sep 2004
Location: Corona Ca.
Posts: 515
Thanks Malkore. I hope to have the tank up and running by the middle of next week.
Doran Hayes
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