fluval XP3?.....Ehim Classic
A 20 gal
or larger DIY sump/fuge combo would be a much, much better choice. Better filtration(macros algae for export, more sytem water volume= less pollution) hides ugly equipment, etc-many, many benefits. Here is a great link w/ a lot of info on DIY sumps, and great info in general- http://www.melevsreef.com/links.html
If your interested in DIY I have a pic in my gallery showing my set-up. It's fairly simple and effective.
lighting, how about this? it gives me 3.5 wpg
I much prefer the look of VHO
lamps over PC
. I think many people would agree.
You get what you pay for w/ skimmers. Avoid the seaclone IMO
/ IME. I have no experience w/ the coralife and have never heard anything good about it either. Read first sentence again lol.
also how much more sand should I get? I have 40 pounds of agralive stuff in the 29,
I used 80 lbs and that got me about 3". You could use a little less IMO
to give more room for animals, LR
and be ok. I would not recommend using your old sand. Nutrients tend to be a problem in reefs, especially over time, and that is one of the primary places they accumulate. Best to buy new and start over clean. Just add a couple pounds of the old LS
to seed the new sand.