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Old 12-05-2004, 05:15 PM   #1
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Yup, another newbie here!

First of all, I'm gonna say I'm sorry cause I'm sure you get these questions alot!!!

I'm getting a 50 gal tank in the next week or two for my first SW setup. I am a perfectionist so I want to get this right! I've spent money on books and now for the plunge.
Tank=50 gal, comes with Fluval 304 canister pump with skimmer attachment, 1x10000K flou. bulb and 1x12000K flou. bulb..not sure on the lumens? 30Watts though.
getting 2 Visitherm 150W heaters 2x maxi-jet 900 Powerheads
Prism deluxe skimmer is just around the corner. about a month away

Here's the questions i have:
what kind of sand would people suggest? I'm looking at aragamax select at the moment.

how long before I can put LR and other livestock in the tank? From what I can tell I'm looking at 3-5 weeks. Is that about right?

I want to eventually get away from using the Fluval pump and just going natural. Am I wrong in thinking that the fluval will help me with some mistakes I might make starting out? I know its wont do much for ammonia and ph too much.

What changes would you make if this was you first setup? I dont wanna break the bank on this, but i dont want to buy the wrong stuff either!

Is the Fluval skimmer attachment alright for the first month or so?

Well thats it for now, I'm sure I'll have more soon. Hope you can all bear with me!
Thanx for the time!

AK
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Old 12-05-2004, 06:17 PM   #2
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I had no idea Fluval made a skimmer attachement. Intersting.

You'll be fine without the skimmer at first, but I'd make sure it's the next purchase you make. I would also recommend looking at other skimmers besides the Prizm. For just a little more you could get a MUCH better skimmer, like the CPR bak pak. If you want to go all out, look at the AuqaC remora (very popular around these forums).

Lighthing is the next purchase you want to consider. 30 watts is not much on a 50 gallon tank. All that is really going to do it provide a light for viewing the aquatic contents of your tank. You don't need this right away, but keep it in your upcoming budget.

As far as substate... it's really a matter of personal opinion. I used CaribSea White Moon sand.

The Fluval canister will not really allow you some "mistake" room. It's just going to move water for you. Canister filters don't provide much bennifit to saltwater tanks. I run one, but the only media I have in mine is GAC. If you wanted to run GAC in your tank the Fluval is a good idea. If you have not already purchased it, save the money and put it towards a good skimmer.

You can put you're LR in right away, well, after you add the water and get the powerheads/heaters running. Depedning on what you purchase (cured/uncured) it will cycle your tank. Please, please, please do not cycle the tank with live marine life. 3-5 weeks is about the average cycle time though.

And keep asking questions, there are no dumb questions in this hobby.
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Old 12-05-2004, 06:25 PM   #3
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Welcome to AA!

Start at the articles section
Articles
Make sure to read....

How to cycle your tank with out the use of fish

Quarantine

Refugiums

Curing Live Rock

Are you planning on using a DSB for your substrate? If, so check with your local Home Depot (garden section) for Southdown Tropical Playsand. It might also be called Old Castle or Yardright. "Tropical Playsand' is the key you are looking for.

Skip the cannister unless you are planing on a Fish only tank.
Are you getting a pre-drilled reef ready tank?
What about a sump?

Lights at 30W? Skip those too and get something in the 3watt/gallon or better range. I have the Coralife Aqualight PC lights (192 watts) which is ok until I can buy a better setup with MF lights. You'l need that for corals, clams etc. if you want any.

If I was setting up a new tank today I would go with a 4"-6" DSB, and 1½-2 pounds of LR to start the cycle.

Ponder on that and come back with more questions. You are sure to hear a lot of opinions.
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Old 12-05-2004, 06:55 PM   #4
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So just regular playsand from Homedepot?
and as stated before, I want to ditch the canister filter along the way. It comes with the tank as a package so I'll use it for now
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Old 12-05-2004, 07:03 PM   #5
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So just regular playsand from Homedepot
NO! You MUST make sure it's tropical play sand. If it does not say this, do NOT use it in your aquarium. You need a silica-free sand, and regular play sand is not.
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Old 12-05-2004, 08:02 PM   #6
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thats what I meant. So long its tropical its alright. so just that no live sand or aragamax etc...
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Old 12-05-2004, 11:41 PM   #7
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Yes. The sand wil become LIVE when you add LR to the tank. That will seed the sand. The best way to seed it would be to get a cup of sand from your lfs or a local friend with an established aquarium.

You'll also want to get a collection of snails and some otehr critters to help stir the sand.
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Old 12-06-2004, 01:09 AM   #8
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WooHoo, Looks like I get to save some cash then!!!

Another question

Do I need to run an air pump with stone?
i thought not, but i heard it might help with ammonia
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Old 12-06-2004, 01:14 AM   #9
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No to the airstone. Just concentrate on water movement. Having a powerhead breaking the surface helps.
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Old 12-06-2004, 08:54 PM   #10
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getting 2 maxi jet 900 (230Gph/each)
should be good for now

any suggestion on where to position them in the tank and what direction to point them?

thanx
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