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Old 07-30-2003, 08:56 PM   #1
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220 gal New Tank ? on LR & BR

Hello

I have just set up my first SW tank...well actually barely set up. I have read and researched as much as I can but can't get a straight answer on how little rock I can get away with initially. Right now I have over 2K invested in the hardware (tank, lights, filters, skimmer, heaters, live sand, salt, etc.) and my wallet is a little light for the rocks.

From what I understand, I need approx. 336 lbs of LR or a combination of LR and BR totaling 336 (1.5 x gal). What is a good ratio of BR and LR? and most importantly, how little rock can I get away with 1/2 or 3/4? Locally rock will cost me approx. $10 lb for LR and $5 for BR...pretty pricey.

What I will be running is:

2-Fluval 404 canister filters (I actually have 3, but am only running 2)
2-250 watt heaters
1-seaclone Protein Skimmer
2-36" Double Bulb florescent Strip lights (is this OK for lighting)
140 lbs of LS
80 lbs of sand

Don't I need a UV sterilizer and what size? Do I need anything else? The LPS said I have plenty already but I want to make sure.

While the sand is cycling, I wanted to clear up the rock issues as I plan on ordering some next week so it can begin cycling.

While I would eventually like to have a true reef system, I am not prepared for that right now and would prefer to "grow" my tank as my experience grows. But I also don't want to waste money by not setting up the tank correctly now. Right now I feel comfortable with a FOWLR tank.

Well I appreciate all of your help and insight. I have visited many sites and this one seems very knowledgeable and helpful.

Thanks

Aqua (and yes that is my real name
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Old 07-30-2003, 09:22 PM   #2
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Quote:
Locally rock will cost me approx. $10 lb for LR and $5 for BR...pretty pricey.
Look at www.hirocks.com for base rock, it will sace you quite a bit of money. You can do the majority, like 2/3 - 3/4 with base rock and the rest with LR, you should also look into an online source for that, 10 per lb is pretty steep, imo. The LR will eventually seed the base rock, however the more LR you use the less that will be of concern.

Quote:
While I would eventually like to have a true reef system, I am not prepared for that right now and would prefer to "grow" my tank as my experience grows. But I also don't want to waste money by not setting up the tank correctly now. Right now I feel comfortable with a FOWLR tank.
With the equipment stated, you might simply consider all base rock for your FOWLR, I do not believe you will have enough light to sustain the LR in such a large tank.
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Old 07-30-2003, 09:24 PM   #3
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10 bucks a pound is way too much . The average price here in North Cali. is about $5/lb and that is cured. That is why I am opting ( for my new tank) to get uncured Fiji rock on line at $3.39/pound. It ships out of LA and takes about two days to get there . Try www.liveaquaria.com. If you are going to cycle your tank for the first time there is no need to put cured lived rock in there since the uncured rock will jumps start your cycling process earlier. But someone please jump in and correct me if I am wrong since I am a total newbie at this.

good luck
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Old 07-30-2003, 09:33 PM   #4
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i've got a site that sells marshal island LR delivered to your door for less that $4/lb. PM me if you want that.
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Old 07-31-2003, 01:56 AM   #5
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on the live rock when a site says premium fiji and 'ultra' premium fiji is the difference "supposed" to be the amount of livestock on the rock? and most pieces are said to be between 6-12 inches. should i order one box of xl rock 12-16inches?
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Old 07-31-2003, 02:09 AM   #6
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With the equipment stated, you might simply consider all base rock for your FOWLR, I do not believe you will have enough light to sustain the LR in such a large tank.
I have 6 ft (2 96 watt bulds) that isn't enough light or is it the wrong type of light. My tank is lit up like the Las Vegas Strip right now . The bulbs are SmartLamp 10,000K Premium-Daylight & Ultra-Acting, the shop said I was OK with lighting?

As for the rock, thanks alot for the advice; my wallet thanks you too. Shipping from LA is perfect since I live in Las Vegas. I was considering driving down there and picking up my own rock, but shipping shouldn't be so bad. With these prices I can get all of the rock I need.

Thanks again

Aqua
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Old 07-31-2003, 02:52 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by Aqua
I have 6 ft (2 96 watt bulds) that isn't enough light or is it the wrong type of light. My tank is lit up like the Las Vegas Strip right now . The bulbs are SmartLamp 10,000K Premium-Daylight & Ultra-Acting, the shop said I was OK with lighting?
That will give you less than 1w/gal and would not be sufficient for most types of coralline. Depending on the rock you get, there may be a possibility of green or burgundy coralline which actually prefers much lower light. The purple/bright pink corallines however will most likely die back with that amount of light. If you want to cultivate the coralline to the base rock you would need at least another 350w of light.

At this stage of the game though I think what reefrunner has suggested would be a better option. Just the base rock for now. When you are ready to decide a better direction for the type of reef tank you want then the new lighting can be considered and purchased. Lighting is exspensive and not something you want to do twice, especially on a 6ft tank.

Cheers
Steve
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Old 07-31-2003, 03:28 AM   #8
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So I am looking at 550w of light for a reef tank. Wow nobody told me that one, that seems like a lot of light or is it just the type of bulb. The shop assured me I had sufficient light for LR. That is a little discouraging especially for what I paid for these lights. I hate paying for things twice.

Thanks
Aqua
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Old 07-31-2003, 07:20 AM   #9
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Well maybe the lights you have will work to your satisfaction. Since you already paid for them, mine as well give them a try. Get all your base rock and then maybe add just a few pounds of LR to your tank. A few pounds of LR to test out your system is going to be alot cheaper than buying whole new bulbs.
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Old 07-31-2003, 12:01 PM   #10
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I can assure you that 192w of light on a 220 gal tank will not be sufficient and at best would only support possible low light corallines, nothing more.

In fact, if you are planning a full reef tank you would need to consider at least 1000w total tank illumination for any real success depending on the types of corals the tank will house. For many SPS and clams, you would be looking at closer to 1400w.

The light strips you have now will not be wasted however. They can be easily incorporated into a DIY hood at a later date once the tank has matured and is ready for corals and such.

Cheers
Steve
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