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Old 01-29-2011, 05:16 PM   #1
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plans for my first saltwater tank

I just moved house and bought a new (used) tank with plans of transferring my planted freshwater setup into it. I flip flopped for a few days and I think I'm going to go saltwater. I've always wanted to and the tank I got has some pretty sweet lights that pushed me over the edge.

the tank is a 56 gallon collumn-ish shape, 30" wide, 24" tall and... i think like 18 deep or so.

the light is a combo kit with a 250w MH and 4 48watt t5's. It came with a c220 canister filter, which it looks like I wont be using much for saltwater.

the stand is kind of a pain because it looks nice but there's not much room to work with. the canister filter takes up the majority of the room currently so it looks like a sump is out. my plans for filteration were a HOB skimmer (remora?), a HOB refugium with macro algae & sand (both of these as large as will fit in the footprint of the back of the tank) and lots of live rock. also a few powerheads

I would like to keep soft corals, a big cleanup crew, some inverts, a clown & anenome, a flame angel, and some blennies and a few other small fish.

does this sound like a decent setup for a first foray into saltwater with a soft coral reef tank?

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Old 01-29-2011, 06:41 PM   #2
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is it drilled/reef ready by chance? if you went for a sump you wouldnt need the canister at all, so that would be out of there.

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Old 01-29-2011, 08:31 PM   #3
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no, its not drilled, and the stand isn't normal


it's open with a small cabinet, so I couldnt fit much of a sump in there.

what about fitting a larger protein skimmer in the cabinet? I'd have to come up with the plumbing though, theres no built in overflow on the tank.
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Old 01-29-2011, 08:54 PM   #4
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not plumbed, and the stand isn't very sump friendly.

here's some pics of the stand
http://www.bradleycaldwell.com/images/p ... 666700.jpg

what would be the best alternative? try to run plumbing to a larger protein skimmer in the smaller cabinet? HOB refugium + protein skimmer? I have a canister filter that could be used if it makes sense.
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Old 01-29-2011, 11:49 PM   #5
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you can get a HOB Skimmer that is plenty big enough for the tank. I think Reef Octopus are the best. the BH-1000 is rated for a 90 gallon tank. I ran one on my 55 for about six months. It did a great job.
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Old 02-06-2011, 08:42 PM   #6
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I hope this will bum this topic up and i can get som more replies.

So I decided it would be best to do some kind of sump. I have room behind the tank to put a 20g on the floor and turn it into a sump, or I can build an acrylic cube and put it inside the cabinet. the cube would have to be 13x13x?? max. this would probably be only enough to hold a skimmer and a return pump. if i did it behind the tank I might be able to fit more, but at the same time I might not be able to get back there to take care ofthigs very easily.

also I'm shopping for budget skimmers. I'm looking at the octopus 110 and the urchin.

which one would you reccomend? how much benefit would I get from upgrading to the pro urchin or the 125 octopus?

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Old 02-07-2011, 05:27 AM   #7
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Have a look at the aqua one 240 skimmer, filter its the best thing to happen for my tank. Love the machine
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Old 02-07-2011, 09:29 AM   #8
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the octopus is a much better skimmer than the aqua-c.
a sump inside that stand is not going to work. i would keep with your original idea of the HOB refugium and skimmer, otherwise you'll have to either drill the tank or use a HOB overflow box to feed the sump.
if you still want the sump, i would keep it off off the floor a little. the reason i say this is because i had a sump on the floor once and i couldn't vacuum it out because i couldn't get a siphon going. 12" or so is plenty.
if you use the 20, you are going to want to partition it in at least 2 sections, so that you can stop micro bubbles from entering the display via a bubble trap, and will be able to keep a constant level in the area where you have your skimmer.

- the bigger skimmer you get the better.

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