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Old 01-02-2015, 08:19 PM   #1
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Skimmer less system possible?

I've got one foot out of the hobby. I need your advise. I have a 180 gallon 2 year old reef I need to downsize. With a 1 year old and another on the way I don't have the time and money to maintain my 180. I plan on keeping all or most of my corals.

The plan is to purchase a 55 gallon from petco. Drill some holes on it for a drain and return and have a refugium setup under the tank. Since it will only have corals and no fish can I get away from having a protein skimmer? The maintenance I can afford is a 30 gallon WC once a month. This setup will have lots of flow and no sand in the bottom of the tank. Just live rock and corals. Pls share your thoughts on this.

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Old 01-02-2015, 08:23 PM   #2
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You will need some fish, unless you feed the corals. That said, you don't necessarily need a skimmer....it's just another helping hand in the quest for clean water.
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Old 01-02-2015, 08:53 PM   #3
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OK I'll keep some of my fish but do you think I can run a successful system without running a protein skimmer, gfo or carbon. I plan on dosing Calcium and Alkalinity. I'll have a filter sock and a 10 gallon refugium.

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Old 01-02-2015, 08:57 PM   #4
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I'll be doing 30 gallon WC once a month. Does anyone run something similar?

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Old 01-02-2015, 09:41 PM   #5
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My 55 reef has been skimmerless several times in it's life...not that I was planning it that way...and I've always struggled with skimmers, always feeling that one should be doing more or skimming all of the time for me. Is it possible? Yes. Is my tank happy without it? No, I have cyano in my sandbed currently. But this is also because the pump from my reactor went at the same time and my GFO/purigen isn't running either.

I personally like using gfo, purigen, and similar products on my tank. It might just be from my poor luck with skimmers or even simply doing something wrong with them that leads to my general disdain for them, but I still run it for what I can get it to skim out of my system.
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Old 01-02-2015, 09:46 PM   #6
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How much WC are you doing?

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Old 01-02-2015, 10:44 PM   #7
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10% weekly. Rather than a 30 once a month, do 10 gallons a week to keep the numbers as low as possible.
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Old 01-03-2015, 09:37 AM   #8
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Rich, what about a skimmer is not going to work for you? The initial cost? Do you have a skimmer on your current 180? You can use that one if so.
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Old 01-03-2015, 04:08 PM   #9
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I had to go with a 40 gallon breeder with a 29 gallon sump / refugium. The 55 gallon that petco sells has tempered glass so change of plans. The skimmer I have on the 180 is huge and I won't be able to fit it inside this new setup. Plus it's kind of loud. I do have a dual reactor I might use and I was also thinking of having a cylinder filter if I can fit it somewhere inside the stand or next to the stand.

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Old 01-03-2015, 04:11 PM   #10
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Can you recommend a good skimmer that is small enough to fit inside the 29 gallon breeder and still have space for a section of Chaeto and a return section?

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