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Old 10-19-2004, 08:22 PM   #1
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?s on protein skimmer and sand substrate

OK, the 75 gal tank I bought came w/ a protein skimmer and from what I've read that is a good thing. Does this mean I don't have to vacuum the substrate? Because I also got 100# of sand and I was wondering how you vacuum sand... I also got a large filter so that I can use the 2 HOB filters that were thrown in on the 40 gal and to upgrade the HOB on my 25 gal. The filter does come with a manual, but I'm at work so I'm being lazy and just posting. It is a box with two tube connections that run up to the tank. The filter sits in the stand under the tank. Is this just a variation of a HOB filter? I guess all it needs is a sponge media. I'm so confused...
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2.5 gal: albino paradise fish (gave up on bettas)
20 gal: 3 fantail goldfish
75 gal tank: 2 discus, 1 blue dwarf gourami, 1 male blue gourami, 1 male gold gourami, 1 female platinum gourami, 1 kissing gourami, 2 balloon mollys, 1 sailfin molly, 1 black neon tetra, 1 white cloud, 1 T-bone rasbora, 14 dwarf neon rainbows, 2 leopard danios, 1 female betta, 1 male betta, 1 clown loaches, 1 clown pleco, 1 pit bull pleco, 1 dojo loach, 1 golden apple snail, 4 corys
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Old 10-19-2004, 10:57 PM   #2
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The protein skimmer won't really work in a FW setup, assuming that is what you have in mind, because the specific gravity won't permit minute particles to stick to "foam" that would be created on the surface by a skimmer, as in a SW setup. Your regular water changes will replace what the skimmer might be able to do. In a SW setup, water change water is expensive, since it has to be saltwater, but for us water changes are relatively cheap.

Your filter sounds like a canister filter, which will be loaded up with biomedia, which is solid things like ceramic noodles or maybe gravel looking stuff, and then sponge and floss material.
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Old 10-20-2004, 06:06 PM   #3
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The filter I have is a Rena Filstar canister filter. Is that good? So, do I need the protein skimmer at all, then? How about a power head for increased water circulation? And when I do water changes, do I still vacuum the sand and will it be heavy enough not to get sucked into the siphon? *my head hurts*
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2.5 gal: albino paradise fish (gave up on bettas)
20 gal: 3 fantail goldfish
75 gal tank: 2 discus, 1 blue dwarf gourami, 1 male blue gourami, 1 male gold gourami, 1 female platinum gourami, 1 kissing gourami, 2 balloon mollys, 1 sailfin molly, 1 black neon tetra, 1 white cloud, 1 T-bone rasbora, 14 dwarf neon rainbows, 2 leopard danios, 1 female betta, 1 male betta, 1 clown loaches, 1 clown pleco, 1 pit bull pleco, 1 dojo loach, 1 golden apple snail, 4 corys
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Old 10-20-2004, 07:14 PM   #4
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YOu dont need the skimmer at all. If you use it it will basicly be useless for its purpose because of the reasons outlined by TankGirl.
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Old 10-20-2004, 10:55 PM   #5
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I really, really like the Rena Filstar series of canisters - I have them and Eheim filters, which are much more expensive, but the Filstars seem to perform as well, though the line is newer and will have to stand the test of time like Eheim. Hopefully it is a Filstar XP3, and then you won't necessarily have to have a powerhead, though depending on what you plan to do with the tank it might be a good idea.

Once sand gets established and has a nice biocolony on it, it does not tend to get sucked up by the syphon at all. We have all sorts of tricks for syphoning sand (there are lots of threads about this) so don't worry a bit about that. Soldier on, you're doing great!
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