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Old 06-12-2013, 11:23 PM   #1
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New setup questions

Hi everyone I'm new to the forum and am here to gain some knowledge and get advice. I had a 30 gallon fresh water for about 3 years but haven't had an aquarium for the past 5 years. I'd like to do a reef aquarium with reef safe fish. I went to buy my salt and live sand last week but the store salesman discouraged me because I didn't have $1000 worth of filters and I was only using a 30 gallon aquarium. I have a chance to buy a 55g for $40 used so I might buy that and start my aquarium. Right now I'd like to see what people recommend as the minimum requirements for filters and lights. I have to dig out my current equipment and once I do I'll list what I already have. I do know its all older equipment but it worked great with my 30g fresh water tank. Well thanks for any advice and I'm looking forward to hearing from everyone.

Nick
Maine USA
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Old 06-12-2013, 11:25 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by MaineSalt View Post
Hi everyone I'm new to the forum and am here to gain some knowledge and get advice. I had a 30 gallon fresh water for about 3 years but haven't had an aquarium for the past 5 years. I'd like to do a reef aquarium with reef safe fish. I went to buy my salt and live sand last week but the store salesman discouraged me because I didn't have $1000 worth of filters and I was only using a 30 gallon aquarium. I have a chance to buy a 55g for $40 used so I might buy that and start my aquarium. Right now I'd like to see what people recommend as the minimum requirements for filters and lights. I have to dig out my current equipment and once I do I'll list what I already have. I do know its all older equipment but it worked great with my 30g fresh water tank. Well thanks for any advice and I'm looking forward to hearing from everyone.

Nick
Maine USA
I don't have a salt water aquarium but us usually you need from what I've seen is a canister filter a protein skimmer and and a sump. For canister filters you usually drill a hole in the back glass.


That's all I know you might be able to use a HOB but that's what I have picked up so far


They don't cost thousands either
Here is a link to some so you can see for yourself
http://amzn.to/13DdB1F


Also I found this series on YouTube an entire how to and what you will need .

http://youtu.be/UwRvd5kS4wY
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Old 06-12-2013, 11:40 PM   #3
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First you have to decide what you want to keep. What fish, what corals? When you decide that, you can settle on one of the two tanks. You don't need to drill a hole in the tank.

Your coral choices will dictate what lighting you will need. Some corals need stronger lighting than others.
If you are sticking with the 30, you can get by without a protein skimmer, but I would definitely have one on the 55.
I have seen successful reef tanks(small ones) with simple HOB filters as the only mechanical filtration.

Tell us what tank you are going to end up with and then we'll give you lighting and filtration ideas.
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Old 06-13-2013, 12:26 AM   #4
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I'm leaning towards starting with the 30g and spend my available money on filters and equipment. Then if I'm successful I can always start a 55 or larger down the road.

I've done some reading on reef safe fish but haven't done much reading on corals I guess I assumed coral was coral. Never should assume....hahaha...
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Old 06-13-2013, 12:46 AM   #5
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I have another question both the 30 and 55 tank don't have an overflow is it ok to just pump the water directly out of the tank into the filter system under the tank then pump it back up?
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Old 06-13-2013, 12:59 AM   #6
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I have a under gravel filter for the 30g is it worth using?
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Old 06-13-2013, 03:39 AM   #7
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I have a under gravel filter for the 30g is it worth using?
You won't be able to use it with sand and they are utterly horrible.
http://www.liveaquaria.com/product/a...cfm?c=597+2856

Anyways there are tons of corals I always thought corals were those hard looking rough things but turns out its all of the crazy looking things too.
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Old 06-13-2013, 08:16 AM   #8
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No. under gravel filters are old school and not for this application. The larger the tank, the easier it will be to maintain. Small problems or changes are big problems in a small tank. What are the dimensions of the 30?
You can use a canister filter if you like, if that's what you are referring to when you say "filter system under the tank" but you will have to clean it regularly....like weekly.
Corals are less tolerant than fish to things like high nitrates and phosphates. Canister filters trap particulate matter and end up being a nutrient sink in a short time.

Rock from the ocean, deemed "live rock" because of the beneficial bacteria on it, is a complete, natural filter in itself. I say complete because it actually has anaerobic bacteria deep inside it that change nitrate to nitrogen gas, which is expelled from your tank at the water surface. A pound to a pound and a half per gallon will be ideal.
There are places on line that sell dry rock and this can be used to save money.

So, what you'll need for the 30 is about 30-45 pounds of rock, a couple power heads for flow, some substrate if you like (make sure you get something with small grains, not large like gravel) and quality lighting, and you are ready to go.
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Old 06-13-2013, 03:11 PM   #9
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You will also want to use good water, especially if you go reef. Tap tends to be bad for a variety of reasons. RO water (out of machines at stores) is not bad at 25cents per gallon. RODI is the best. Fish stores usually sell that or buy your own unit, which saves money over time.
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Old 06-14-2013, 06:26 PM   #10
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What do you guys think of this info for a beginner salt water tank I'm planning on going with reef tank with a few reef safe fish?


55 gallon fish tank with stand, co2 system, 4' T5 high output lighting, custom glass top, filters, heater, UV light sterilizer. For $300 maybe I can get them down some.

Thanks
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