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Old 07-18-2015, 10:40 PM   #1
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Overwhelmed newbie - Starting FOWLR, help!

My wife has hounding me wanting a Niger Triggerfish. Ran across a deal on a tank today so I'm going to make her easily obtainable dream fish a reality. I'm not quite sure every thing I need. This is where I get overwhelmed to the point of running away. Here is what I THINK I need. Please set me straight!

1. Tank and stand (75 gallon tank and stand obtained today)
2. Sand and live rock. How much and what kind?
3. Overflow box? Or should I drill the tank?
4. Protein skimmer
5. A sump? What size?
6. Lights. Tank came with an Oddysea quad T5HO. I assume this will be fine
7. Something to create flow in the tank. Tank came with two Grech gvp-101b powerhead/wavemaker things, 800gph a piece, will this be enough?

Is there anything that I am missing that I absolutely HAVE to have? Is there anything that I listed that I don't need? I am going to try to collect these items over the span of a few months while closing on our home. Be at least 4-6 weeks before any of it gets wet.
Thanks in advance


Jesse
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Old 07-18-2015, 11:24 PM   #2
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Well eventually you'll need a larger aquarium because they get 1' long. The rock, sand, and overflow are all up to you. Obviously if your comfortable drilling a tank it would look a lot nicer otherwise that's the only difference. I've never had trigger fish but they seem like they would knock stuff over so I would give him enough rock to hide in but I wouldn't stack it high enough that if it knocked the rock over it would hit the glass. I would go with a 30 gallon sump that gives you room to grow macro algae and your protein skimmer.


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Old 07-19-2015, 02:01 AM   #3
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#1-Dry Rock, there are a few hitchhikers on Live Rock that people want to stay away from, so they opt for using Dry Rock, or Dead Rock. Macro Rock is a good place to start looking for that. Either way you go you will need a minimum of 1lb per gallon. You can use Fully Cured Live Rock, and have the tank cycled in just a few days also. Other way is to use just a couple of pounds of Live Rock and the rest Macro or Dry Rock.

#2-Replacement filter media like filter floss and activated carbon (if you get a filter) Which is really not necessary.

#3-Multiple Power heads (2 or 3) 10x your water volume for just a Fish Only With Live Rock, and at least 20x your water volume for a Reef Tank. So lets say your going reef, and you have a 100g tank, you would need flow in that tank at minimum of 2000gph, or 2 1000gph power heads.

#4-Protein Skimmer, rated at 2 times your water volume. Unless your tank is under 30g, in which case you can do 10% water changes a week to rid the system of detrius. But, you'll have to watch the water parameters close, if things go haywire, you'll have to do more water changes.

#5-Saltwater Test Kits. Reef Test Kit. Test for Ammonia, Nitrites, Nitrates, PH, Phosphates, Calcium, ALK and Magnesium.

#6-Saltwater fish food. Mysis Shrimp, Squid, Cyclopease, Algae Sheets, Romaine . Flake food is not really a good food to feed your marine fish.

#7-Aquarium vacuum. This one is iffy. Most don't use one, if you have enough flow in the tank you won’t need one

#8-Rubber kitchen gloves

#9-Fish net

#10-Two, clean, never used before, 5-gallon buckets

#11-Aquarium thermometer, digital being the best.

#12-Brush with plastic bristles (old tooth brush) - needed for cleaning the live rock if you don't get Fully Cured Live Rock.

#13-Power Strip, possibly GFCI outlets by the tank.

#14-Optional but definitely recommend getting a Reverse Osmosis or RO/Deionization filter for the make-up water, and a barrel for storing the water.

#15-Possibly a Quarantine Tank for your new fish. They sit in here for a few weeks to kill off parasites and bacteria, to keep it from getting in your main tank

#16-Heater rated for your size tank.

#17-Saltwater Mix. Marine Salt. Instant Ocean is the cheap Salt that beginners and Advanced use alike.

#18-Saltwater Hydrometer or even better a Refractometer, which is more accurate. There is also a Digital Meter that is way advanced if you have the cash.

#19-Aquarium filter (not absolutely necessary if running with adequate amounts of live rock, but nice to have if you need to use a mechanical filter or activated carbon, or GFO and such)

#20-Aquarium substrate such as live sand or crushed coral. Some go bare Bottom, others choose the 1-2" bottom, others, more advanced will try the Deep Sand Bed, which is over 6" deep.

Skimmers & Pumps

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Reef Aquarium Care: Kent Marine Liquid Calcium Supplement

Saltwater Aquarium Buffer: Kent Marine Superbuffer-dKH pH Buffer and Alkalinity Builder

Aquarium Chemistry: A Homemade Two-Part Calcium And Alkalinity Additive System — Advanced Aquarist | Aquarist Magazine and Blog

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Old 07-19-2015, 10:09 AM   #4
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Wow, thanks RM! Just woke up so I can't exactly see straight yet, once I have some coffee in me I'll give that a full read over and use it as a check list


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Old 07-19-2015, 10:31 AM   #5
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Nice to see this going into action


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Old 07-19-2015, 11:57 AM   #6
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Can't wait to see you come to the salty side Jesse

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Old 07-20-2015, 02:24 PM   #7
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A few more questions. You say the skimmer needs to be rated at 2x the water volume. Does that mean the skimmer should flow 150gph (75g tank) or rated for a 150 gallon system?

As far as mechanical filtration, I understand HOB and canister filters become nitrate factories unless meticulously maintained. I would like to go ahead and do a sump system. HOB overflow boxes tend to scare me a bit. I would hate for 40+ gallons from a sump end up on the floor. Does this happen often? Or should I go ahead and drill the tank? Is there another type of filtration that is acceptable outside of the traditional sump?


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Old 07-20-2015, 02:38 PM   #8
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Overwhelmed newbie - Starting FOWLR, help!

Drilling a tank is safer as it can not loose the siphon, but also don't fill the dump completely so the water won't overflow it if something happens like a pump failure.

An your right about the skimmer, you want one larger then your display but not one that will over skim. In my case I found a good deal on a 75g skimmer but I plan to upgrade to a 100 or more around next year.

A wet/dry filter can work, just not as effective imho as a fuge in removing nutraintes.
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Old 07-20-2015, 07:48 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by hensleyjk View Post
A few more questions. You say the skimmer needs to be rated at 2x the water volume. Does that mean the skimmer should flow 150gph (75g tank) or rated for a 150 gallon system?

As far as mechanical filtration, I understand HOB and canister filters become nitrate factories unless meticulously maintained. I would like to go ahead and do a sump system. HOB overflow boxes tend to scare me a bit. I would hate for 40+ gallons from a sump end up on the floor. Does this happen often? Or should I go ahead and drill the tank? Is there another type of filtration that is acceptable outside of the traditional sump?


Jesse
The HOB overflows shouldn't scare you. I have one on my tank, and have shut the pump off to see what would happen in case of a power outage, and every time I turn the pump back on the syphon starts right up. If you want to drill it go ahead, but make sure you can drill your tank.

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Old 07-20-2015, 08:04 PM   #10
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Which overflow do you have?

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