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Old 04-30-2008, 11:42 AM   #1
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Setting up a 20gallon.

Hello I tried to set up a 65 gallon salt water previously, it worked out quite well, but the cost of maintaining it grew phenominal and I decided to downgrade. I did have some problems along the way though with choosing the right equipment and I want this one to start off and remain virturaly unchanged. I would like just a couple fish along with zoo's mushrooms and liverock.

Type of Substrate + Depth
Amount of Live Rock
Light + how much wattage
Which powerhead
Which protien skimmer
Would a refugium be needed?
Which filter?

For fish I was thinking just a clown fish, goby, maybe something else and a shrimp.

Let me know thanks I look forward to setting this up within the next month and getting going. Also would anyone recommend a 30gallon instead so things can't shift too quickly? I imagine with only 3 fish he bioload would be low.
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Old 04-30-2008, 12:50 PM   #2
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sweet, i have a 20 and a 10, 3 fish in my 20 and 2 in my 10, im going to go to 6 in my 20 gallon. i think its a good size and not costly
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Old 04-30-2008, 01:54 PM   #3
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20 gallon

I have a twenty gallon tank, about 35 lbs.live rock ,1 bag caribsea live sand ,i think it was 20lb .red sea protein skimmer .gamma uv 8 watt. magnum 350 cannister filter.Ihave had this systym running for 30 months and moved it once.I also have some macro algae (seaweed) floating in a corner to help with nitrates The tanks inhabitants and my friends are 2 clowns,2 yellow gobys,1 blue damsel,a beautiful 3-1/2inch royal gramma ,
a coral banded shrimp and a chocalate chip star. also 50 or so snails maybe 25 30 crabs .I change the water 20% every week or ten days
my water tests are reliably sweet but i do fight with nitrates.I am planning a larger tank because all these animals are at least two yrs.old and they have grown.but the tanks bacteria have kept up with the load. This is my first tank but I have not lost a saltwater fish.....yet ,so goes the battle.
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Old 04-30-2008, 02:14 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SeriousDude5 View Post
Type of Substrate + Depth
Amount of Live Rock
Light + how much wattage
Which powerhead
Which protien skimmer
Would a refugium be needed?
Which filter?
A 30 won't cost much more than a 20 and gives you 50% more water volume. More is better

I would go with a 1" - 3" sand bed or bare bottom

LR should be 1˝ - 2 pounds /gallon, but most of it can be base rock.

For lighting I would go with a 4 -6 bulb T5 fixture with individual parabolic reflectors. That should allow you keep almost anything.

I would probably use 2 Hydor Koralia 2's for flow in the tank.

I guess the Remora-C takes winner for a PS for that size tank. Others will chime in with their favorites.
AquaC Remora Protein Skimmer with Maxi-Jet 1200 Pump

A sump or fuge is not needed, but they are helpful. Doing regular partial water changes will help maintain water quality. If you don't have corals then some nitrate is acceptable and regular pwc's will control that.

With the LR and PS a secondary filter is not needed. You may want to get a HOB to run on the tank that can be transfered to a QT tank when necessary. Having it running on the main give you an instant cycle on the QT tank when you want add a new fish.
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Old 04-30-2008, 03:46 PM   #5
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Just out of curiosity what was your cost of keeping up the 65 gal if you dont mind sharing? I was thinking of going originally with a 30 gal but decided on 55 gal.. anyone have rough upkeep costs ? ( FOWLR system)
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Old 05-04-2008, 09:02 PM   #6
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Quote:
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Just out of curiosity what was your cost of keeping up the 65 gal if you dont mind sharing? I was thinking of going originally with a 30 gal but decided on 55 gal.. anyone have rough upkeep costs ? ( FOWLR system)
To be honest I can't quite remember, but I remember it being the upgrades that killed me the most. I had a bad protien skimmer, my light wasn't strong enough (decided to expiriment w/ medium-high light corlas and I needed much more live rock, as well as replacing the cleaning crew, and buying how suppliments.) FOWLR I doubt will cost you much seeing as the light doesn't apply much, and if you choose to add calcium, other than that salt? Thats why I wish to just have a small tank now with shrooms and zoos, I remember my zoos they were impossible to dystroy (they went through a lot) Then I got a brain and it was fading and I thought it was dying then it bounced back and so on. But yeah I'll most likely be purchsing the tank within the next month or so.

Does anyone have a suggestion for a light for low light coral? The one I had on my 65gallon costed $350 I believe, which was my first disaster from ebay. It arrived broken, so I had to ship it back, then they sent a new one back, then I tried the balast thing didnt work. So I had to ship that back! It took about a month to get things settled. Sorry for writting so much just sharing my expierences
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Old 05-04-2008, 09:12 PM   #7
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My response is on the first page, still applies: http://www.aquariumadvice.com/forums...ce-102529.html
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Old 05-07-2008, 10:45 AM   #8
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I also have a 20 gallon....I think I asked this already, but here goes (again):
I have shells I gathered from the Caribbean a few years ago. I'd like to drop them into my tank, but only if it's safe to do so. Right now I have no fish, but I returned the damsel and added about 8 lbs of LR. Is this an okay maneuver?
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Old 05-11-2008, 09:30 AM   #9
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hi. what 20 gallon are you considering? a 20 high, or a 20 long? i would go with a 20 long if you are in fact choosing a 20 gallon.
but i would rather go with a 30 for the above stated reason. i would choose a 30 "breeder" for my display. the dimensions of this tank are 36 3/16 x 18 1/4 x 12 15/16.
the 12" depth will allow you to buy weaker, cheaper lighting, and the 18" from front to back will give you alot of aquascaping options.

as for lighting, i'd probably end up with a 4 lamp, T-5 fixture as well. nova extreme..4x39 watt ?
as for a protein skimmer, i probably would do without one, due to the extremely limited HOB(hang on back)selection for a tank that size.
i used to have an aqua-c remora and i hated it. it didn't skim much at all, and the amount of microbubbles it put in the tank no matter what i did was so annoying that i couldn't stand it.
the other options put a rather large pump in the display.

hydor koralias are decent powerheads, but are a bit large. i'd try to get away with maxijet 1200's. maybe use 1 koralia and 2 mj12's...

1"-3" inches of sand is a good choice. choose dry, sugar-sized aragonite based sand. don't bother buying "live sand". it's expensive and a waste. the dry sand will become live soon enough.

a refugium won't be needed, but it will certainly not hurt. they make hang on refugiums that work well for small tanks.

as for filtration, you could rely completely on the hang on refugium, the live rock, and waterchanges, if you keep a decent bio load. i suppose you could run a hand on filter with some carbon if you like, or use filter pads, but clean them frequently..like once or twice a week.
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