The salty side

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Aquarium Advice Regular
Apr 6, 2014
Iv just upgraded my tank from a 75l to a 180 litres. Approx 40gal. I have an external filter unit built in but no sump. Will an external filter full of small pieces of live rock, a hob protein skimmer and plenty live rock in the tank be an okay way to run a marine tank? I really want to swap over to the salty side! Cheers for any advice

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Are you wanting to go reef or just FOWLR? For a reef tank, the external filter could be an issue unless you clean it very regularly. You'd also need lighting obviously. For a FOWLR, I think the system as you describe it would work fine.
What is fowlr?

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Also I have t5 lighting in my tank

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FOWLR is Fish Only - With Live Rock. T5s, depending on the quantity and age of the bulbs, can support some soft coral.
I would try and get a ten gallon sump and put the hob skimmer in there because it may leak. I put PVC for plumbing and an e shoppes overflow box. Then throw a filter sock at the place where the water enters the sump.

-The Reeffantic ??
If I get a ten gallon tank full of media and live rock and fit it underneath my 40 gallon is that all I need? Plus a pump to circulate the water?

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You would either need to drill your 40 gallon, or get a hang on back overflow.
It's already got built in pipe work for an external filter. Hence why I was curious to see if that was enough filtration without a sump

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it depends on what you are doing, as I stated above. If you want coral, I wouldn't recommend it. If you just want a FOWLR tank, it is probably fine.
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