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Old 02-07-2005, 09:19 PM   #1
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getting started on a saltwater tank

i have a 39 gallon tank i am going to turn to saltwater. I have had freshwater fish for years always wanted a saltwater tank.

I have 40lbs of Arogonite reef sand,14lbs of Instant Ocean Reef Crystals,and a Aqua Clear Aquatics CAP-800 power head and a deep six hydrometer
What else do i need?

Is the CAP-800 power head to big for this tank?

Will the filter ive been using for freshwater not sure the brand but its the doublesided one that the filters slide in the top.

Can i use some of the rocks from my freshwater tank in saltwater?

Sorry for all the questions but me and my wife are excited about getting started!!
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Old 02-07-2005, 09:32 PM   #2
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The ph should be fine I would think. You will just have to position it for the best flow.The hob filters work for both sw and fw. The rocks depend on what kind they are but I would think that if your fw fish didn't die they might be alright. Did they come from a lfs? What else you need will depend on what you are going to be getting. FO, FOWLR, or reef. Give us some ideas about what you think you might like to have in your tank. Then we can give you some ideas on what to start with.
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Old 02-07-2005, 10:03 PM   #3
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I love the saltwater fish and the live plants or whatever there called im not very familiar with the names.

is it ossible to have a little of all in one 39gallon tank fish,live rock and the live plants (what is the proper name)?
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Old 02-07-2005, 10:12 PM   #4
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Live plants are all algae in sw. But you may be talking about corals which are animals. Your next main concern will be lighting. What do you have?
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Old 02-07-2005, 10:30 PM   #5
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corals and the stuff like the little nemo fish get in stuff like that

all i have are the lights which came with the tank if one blows i get another at walmart so im sure i need other lights

We are cleaning it up as we speak
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Old 02-07-2005, 11:20 PM   #6
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The lighting is going to be your next hurdle, the best for corals is mh but you can use vho as well. A little more limited as what you can keep with the vho but a good rule of thumb is 5 watts per gallon but it's not an exact science.
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Old 02-07-2005, 11:22 PM   #7
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Power compacts and T5's are also a good choice for a smaller tank. The prices have really come down recently. Check on ebay for good deals. Also www.hellolights.com has some nice ones if money is not a big issue.
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Old 02-07-2005, 11:57 PM   #8
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24 inch 10,000K AQUARIUM COMPACT LIGHT saltwater
would this be to small 65.00 on ebay
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Old 02-08-2005, 12:01 AM   #9
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How many watts total? You are going to need a total wattage of between 120 and 220 watts as a base line. That's 3 to 5 watts per gallon. Take the wattage total and divide it by 39(tank size).
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Old 02-08-2005, 12:02 AM   #10
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Also how long is your tank? You don't want to much dead space on the ends. A little is ok but not a whole lot.
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Old 02-09-2005, 08:29 PM   #11
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ok can someone point me in the right direction for some lights.

my tank is 36inchs long and 12.5 inchs wide what type lights do
i need -----im lost
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Old 02-14-2005, 06:02 PM   #12
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Old 02-14-2005, 08:49 PM   #13
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ok can someone point me in the right direction for some lights.
www.captivereefs.com has a great selection. Darin is a member and sponsor of this fine site. Might I also suggest getting a good book. I like "The Conscientious Marine Aquarist" by Robert Fenner. Good luck and...
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Old 02-17-2005, 12:30 AM   #14
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thanks we finally got are tank set up. we bought two damsels and they seem very happy and are eating good.

we bought 40ibs of reef bones and some live rock

what do live rock do and do they require much light??
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Old 02-17-2005, 09:52 AM   #15
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Are you cycling your tank using the damsels? Honestly, this is an outdated practic and is very hard on the fish. Besides, damsels are very aggressive fish and many aquarists want to get rid of them before adding other livestock to the tank. There is a great arcticel on "fishless Cycling" in the Articles section at the top of the page. I suggest taking the damsels back and cycling using this method. LR provides what is known as biological filtration in the tank. It provides a great environment for benificial bacteria to grow. These bacteria help maintain a hight water quality. There is no better filter for the home aquarium then 1.5-2lbs/gal of LR. You do not need any special lighting for your LR to get the great benefits of it's biofiltration. However, better lighting will help with the visable life on the LR. Things like coraline algea will benifit from a good lighting system and eventually cover your rock in colors of purple, blue and red.
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Old 02-17-2005, 06:35 PM   #16
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we let are tank cycle for like a week anda half before adding fish i hope this was long enough, was it?--sholuld i take the fish back?-- they seem very happy. please reply
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Old 02-17-2005, 10:16 PM   #17
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what are your current water parameters?
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Old 02-17-2005, 10:43 PM   #18
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im not sure of the ph but the water gravity?? was between .023 and .022

ive noticed on my live rocks they are some kind of little centipede looking creatures on the rocks moving about are these safe for the tank and what are they

thanks for the replies
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Old 02-17-2005, 10:50 PM   #19
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You should really get test kits for the basics...ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, Ph, CA and Alk. Your SG should be fine between 1.022-1.025. For a FOWLR tank you can take it down to 1.019 if you want. Hard to say about the life on the LR. Could be a bristle worm or some type of Pod. Both just fine for your tank.
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Old 02-17-2005, 11:20 PM   #20
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i will buy a test kit this weekend and post back on the results

i ve had freshwater tanks for years still have a 55gallon with tropheus and a hap mori and several other cichlids.

this is my first saltwater tank and so far i am loving it I guess just like other tanks one has to be careful what fish he or she choses.

I only have a 40 gl so i guess i will be limited on the # of these beautiful fish i can get but as i am seeing they are so many different things live rock-snails-star fish to pick from

just having fun with it
this is a great forum and thank you so much for the replies and all of the help thanks!
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