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Old 07-06-2011, 04:33 PM   #1
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Need ideas for a 55 gallon freshwater Filtration set up......

Hi everyone.

I just bought my first "really big tank" a 55g tank (48L 13W 28H) and I'm probably months away from actually setting it up because of money issues but thought I would post here to get some ideas for the future.

Planning on setting it up as sand substrate,driftwood/rockcaves, planted, community fish (lots of smaller sized fish), shrimp and dwarf crayfish tank. I have 10 and 20 gallon tanks set up in a simular way. I'm not a total novice but have made some mistakes in the past and would like to avoid as many as possilbe with such a big tank.

I'd like to know what filtration would be best for this type of tank....all I'm used to is the "back of the tank" overflow filters.

Also would like a nice lighting system that would give me the wattage for healthy plants and to show off the colors of my fish the best. Looking for medium to high light. Considering LED's but know very much about them.

Would be interested in DIY projects that could help cut down costs or items from a good lower cost source.

Thanks for any information

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Old 07-07-2011, 02:56 PM   #2
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For a tank that size I'd suggest a canister filter and the Fulval model 305 or 405 would work great IMO/E. Nice thing about a canister is that there's less stuff hanging off the back (and top) of you tank and the total media surface that helps clean the water of detritus is much larger than an HOB (Hang On Back, or overflow as you say). If you want to stick with an HOB set up, then I'd suggest a couple Aqua Clear 50 filters. I have both the mfg (types) I listed and either one is a good choice that I will always recommend.

As for lighting, there's a couple ways to go. Either low lights for basic plants, or higher lights that will allow you a greater selection, but will also require a lot more work to keep them alive and thriving.

Here's a link to a great lighting website: fish need it;lights; food;Sponge

Here's a DIY lighting website (I have 2 kits from them): Compact Fluorescent Lighting Kits

Here's a great website with lots of plant info: PlantGeek.net - Your Aquatic Plant Resource
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Old 07-07-2011, 10:30 PM   #3
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Thanks Mr Limpet for the information... Unfortunately both Fluval model 305 & 405 r kind of high for my wallet for now... Is there any thing eles do or make that wont hang on the back of my tank other then a tube or two... I have a 10g & a 20gL siting aroud can i do any thing with them?
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Old 07-07-2011, 10:41 PM   #4
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There are cheaper canisters, but IMO you get what you pay for and when it comes to something critical like filtration, I don't like to compromise. Marineland has canisters for pretty cheap, there's also one called Sun Sun (something like that) that's pretty cheap too.

Google shows that Amazon has the 305 for $115, which is what I paid and that's over $100 below retail.

http://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B000Q9...751465-3661337
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Old 07-07-2011, 10:47 PM   #5
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I am using a 405 on my 55 and love it. Easy to clean and I've had no issues priming it. Parts are cheap(motor/shaft/etc) and easily replaced. I've actually not had to replace anything on the 405 yet, but keep a stock of parts just in case.

Look on Ebay/Craigslist. I got 2 Fluvals(404's) and a 75 gallon tank for less than the cost of a single Fluval 405. One 404 worked perfect, and the other just needed a $5 part.
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Old 07-07-2011, 10:53 PM   #6
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ok thanks ill look around to see what i can find.... how do u think a sump will work i see alot of post about them?
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Old 07-07-2011, 10:57 PM   #7
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Quote:
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ok thanks ill look around to see what i can find.... how do u think a sump will work i see alot of post about them?
As posted, a used can is something to consider too. A sump might cost as much or more in putting all the parts together, but it is something to research.
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Old 07-07-2011, 11:41 PM   #8
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Ill do so price research and see what i can do ..... do i need a pump for the canisters the top of the tank will be about 5.5ft to 6ft high depending on the stand i will get or make i havent decided yet lol... I did think it was going to be this many choises when i got it but it will all be with it when i get it set up i was at petco and they r doing a sale so i got a 55g for $55 so i got it when i got my 10g & 20g i just thow them together and they r still runing fine 5 years later but i know i cant just thow together a 55g and have it run good
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Old 07-08-2011, 12:15 AM   #9
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Ill do so price research and see what i can do ..... do i need a pump for the canisters the top of the tank will be about 5.5ft to 6ft high depending on the stand i will get or make i havent decided yet lol... I did think it was going to be this many choises when i got it but it will all be with it when i get it set up i was at petco and they r doing a sale so i got a 55g for $55 so i got it when i got my 10g & 20g i just thow them together and they r still runing fine 5 years later but i know i cant just thow together a 55g and have it run good
Canisters have a limit to how high they can pump water back into the tank, so read the instructions once you choose a filter. You can always raise the canister with a block to meet the requirements.
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