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Old 02-11-2013, 06:01 PM   #1
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Question Setting up 26 gallon bow front for SW

Hello All!

I am happy to join the SW community, I have a few common questions normally asked by a new comer. I have also seen mixed answers, I feel a bit skeptical as well due to size of my tank which may need some additional care.

I have always had fresh water - and been quite successful at it, this is a whole new ball game.

So let me first start with what direction I intend on going in. I have a 26 gallon aqueon bow front. I only intend on adding maybe 4 fish due to tank size, coral not sure as I didnt settle on fish yet. I just set the tank up saturday, the starter kit came with a aqueon 30 filter, 100w heater and air pump. I setup the tank with sand, mixed and added the saltwater to tank, measured and its currently in proper range per hydrometer.

So now for my questions and steps.

1) I plan to pickup about 20-25 lbs of live rock, this should be sufficient?

2) The tank came with a aqueon 30, but I am hearing I should go bigger or protein skimmer. I have a tight budget, so I am trying to go with must haves. Some are saying a little more live rock will help if no skimmer is in place, or a lesser filter.

3) I dont plan to use damsels to cycle my tank, I am going to let it sit for about 4 weeks as I seen in my research. I purchased a bateria supplement, what is a good indication that its ready. Questions is, when can live rock be added? This is supposed to be added at some point as well to help cycle the tank?



4) Powerhead, is it better to stay away since its only 26 gallons?


Thanks in advance to all. I greatly appreciate the support.
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Old 02-11-2013, 06:14 PM   #2
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About 1-2 lbs of live rock per gallon, so you're good! Also, live rock goes in first!! As this is where your beneficial bacteria will grow! Liverock is basically your filter. A bigger filter would be nice, but it's not needed! Also a skimmer is not needed as long as you do weekly water changes.

For a 26 gallon I'd do 2 koralia hydor nano powerheads! I have that in my 20 and I like the flow. Corals need flow and powerheads also keep your tank from getting dead spots!
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Old 02-11-2013, 06:23 PM   #3
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Ok, i'll look into powerheads. I would like to try to get it setup in a way that I could limit water changes to every 3-4 weeks. How about if I upgrade to one of those hang on back skimmer/filter combos? Any recommendations? Figure that might be an option to cut down on clutter as well, trying to keep it clean.

Ok, i'll hop out this week and grab live rock. Once I settle on filtration, should I just wait out the 4 weeks (with live rock in tank) before adding fish? Just curious whats a safe time frame.

Thanks!!
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Old 02-11-2013, 06:27 PM   #4
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A skimmer I think would definitely be needed if you wanted that schedule for water changes. But I am not 100% positive as I don't have a skimmer on my system.

You just need to test your levels when it comes to the cycle. Could be 2 weeks, could be 4, could be 6+. After your cycle you should add a cleanup crew (snails crabs etc) and then start adding fish! Keep lights off during the cycle as well, as it will only cause unnecessary algae!
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Old 02-11-2013, 10:14 PM   #5
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Ok thanks. I heard that crabs n others can have negative impacts on water quality, no?

Ill need to do more research on the filter cause I'm really interested in finding ways of keeping it clean economically.
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