The video's were great! After scouring the net for a tank, building one would save me quite a bit of money. May end up doing that.
The wife and i were talking this morning and we both have a feeling that we will end up putting coral's in the tank at some point, so I need to make sure that the equippment I get will handle coral if/when we decide to get some.
LOL...good luck on all of it.......u will not want anything less than T5s...in case u do decide on corals.......also keep in my since u were aimoing at a fowler first.......be careful way down the road with choosing your fish.....as some ARE NOT reef safe...just incase u do decide.
I TRY MY BEST to NOT use any chemicals in any of my tanks(13 of them),,,,,but in the reef I do add at times iodine, trace emements,calcium...U will definitly need a SW tesrter kit.......and how are u planning on your water??? R u going to purchase it already made? or are u looking into an ro/di unit of your own....if planning this I can recommend the filterguys.com....they were great to deal with
For your tank size peronally I would go with nothing less than a mag9 pump...the skimmer will only clean the deposits out of your water....then back into the refugium...does not have power or purpose to put water back into the main tank...also needs to be cleaned daily
Initial setup for saltwaters is simple enough.
Good advise there from lorsbell about the reef safe fish.
Most systems take 6 months to mature to the point where you can add corals so gives you a good time to choose what you like and research their care.
I have to agree that the use of RO (or DI) water is needed. I live local to my LFS so choose to avoid the hastle of mixing my own saltwater and buy from there. However we do own our own RO unit so use that for top ups. (If you want more details of this just ask and either I or someone else will elaborate or alternatively check out some of the more recent threads in this beginners section and draw on some of the advise given to other saltwater beginners).
Test kits are the main tools you'll need for checking your water perameters. Ammonia, Nitrite and nitrate are the same principle for set up as the freshwater and are essential for monitoring the nitrogen cycle. The ph is a higher range kit and preferable readings between 8.1-8.3 (but as long as it's stable this can be lower - mine runs on 7.8 in both my FOWLR and Reef)
If planning corals then Calcium, Magnesium, kh and Iodine are useful. SalifertAll in one is a good general all round additive and Magnesium on top of that.
The main test kit I have found essential is Phosphate - This toxin can suffocate corals and readings should be 0. I keep a bag of Phosguard in my sump to help keep the levels down.
Skimmer has pump for it's own purposes. A seperate pump(we use a pond one) is needed to return water to the main tank. I'm not techy so you'll have to ask the guys here what gallon per hour you should need based on the tank size, sump size flow rate etc. You also need to work out how you are transfering the water from the maintank to the sump. There are several ways Some use a weir system, some a syphon style down pipe and others a pump. There may be other ways but like I said I'm not techy so this wil have to be your choice from advise from the rest of the guys here or your own research.
I do plan on purchasing an RO unit. My question on this is, do you have to have it continuously hooked up and running water to your tank, or do you just get it out and run it to do a top off?
I live an hour away to an LFS, so I am going to have to do the top offs myself. How often do you all have to top off? I know it will very because of the size of the tanks, but just trying to get a feel for it.
Thanks for the info on the pump question. So the skimmer needs a pump and I will need a pump to return the water to the tank. I plan on two powerheads (I hope that is the correct terms for the two pumps in the tank that moves the water around). My question concerning those, is do they require pumps as well?
As far as the water down to the sump / refugium, my tank has a built in overflow, isnt that how the water gets down to the sump / refugium?
You run you RO filter separate from the tank. I fill 5 gal buckets with mine and store them until I need them.
I go though 3-4 gallons a day for top off, but I've been using a fan to blow on the sump water surface to help cool them. So this add to most of the evaportation.
I'll bet the average 75 without a fan will tank 1-2 gallons every 2-3 days. Just a guess.
Powerheads won't take a pump. You may think of a way to get good flow though your live rock also. I use power heads in my 150g and powerheads from a undergravel filter in my 90g. You really don't want dead spots for debris to collect. The flow though the rock will help it to do it's job better.
wow, 1 - 2 gallons of evaporation over a 2 - 3 day period? Thats more than I expected.
I am thinking that since my tank is a bow front, maybe 3 power heads. One on each side and then a 3rd in the back angled so that it moves water through the rock. I guess since the cycle takes so long, I will have time to figure out the proper angles to hopefully eliminate dead spots and produce good flow in all areas of the tank.
Next question. How often does the skimmer have to be emptied? Is that something that no matter what, just make a habit of emptying it everyday?
It depends on how fast it fills. Everyday is good, it doesn't have to be full to empty it.
Remember evaporation depends on a lot of factors, so it maybe a lot less.
On you powerheads I would have the 2 on the side aimed at the water surface to "break" the surface and help with gas exchange. Aim them towards each other to help create irratic water movement. You want to avoid the one flow direction as much as possible.
Have another question. I ordered a gallon of Stress Coat Plus and a Marineland Canister 350 pro a few days before we bought the new aquarium. I don't think the Stress coat can be used in a Saltwater can it?
Now the Canister filter says it is either freshwater or marine. What are the disadvantages to using a canister filter like this on a saltwater tank? Does it limit the other things I can use? It's a hassle to ship stuff back, so I just want to make sure that it is inadvisable to use one before I go through the **** to send it back.
If your running a sump I dont think u have to use a canister.......I have a BF....72 gal....I use only 2 powerheads...dont forget the kind of reflect off of the glass......I woulds only start with 2.....U are also going to have to return the water back into the tank...that will also help with circulation. When u get your skimmer it should come with its own pump(manufactured that way) ...check out the "G series" they are awesome. I have never used stress coat on SW fish...I have however used Metronidazole on their food to prevent Ick...this was when I first purchassed a blue-hippo-tang...it was a very small young one and I was advissed by my store to do this....as a preventative...I have no idea id any else uses the stress coat with SW fish.
As stated b4.....check out the filterguys.com........they are the bomb!!!!! (for RO/DI unit).....I make 32 gallons of SW when I do it.....I use a plastic trash can(new)...b4 I add my salt ,I take out about 10 gallons of water and keep it in my empty salt buckets...they have lids and work great.If I am doing all 3 SW tanks ...I just make some more to fill the trash can back up....,I toss my extra pump in the can...get it moving around then add my salt. when finished taking old water out of the tank....I hook a hose up to the pump in the can and just pump it back into the tank....simple.....
If u do try the filter guys for their units ...I got an on/off switch with mine...we installed mine under my extra bathroom sink....when Im done I just close the switch,and store the unit itself and hoses under the cabinate......we had an extreme hot summer and even with 3 SW tanks...I've never gone through 10 gallons in a week of top off water.(plain ro/di..not salted.
How bout lites????? Any decissions on that part yet????....your getting there!!!!!!
I would not use the canister. Unless you want to clean it out every week. It will only hold debris and bring up your nitrate levels.
Think about it all those filters do is hold waste, which is still in full contact with the water in your tank. Now it's breaking down and be coming nitrate.
At least with a protein skimmer the waste is removed and not in contract with the water to break down into nitrate.
If you do decide to run it remember to clean it often. I would fill it with live rock, carbon, and phosphate remover.
Lanlesnee, after what you said, I will just send the canister filter and Stress Coat back. I may keep the stress coat and throw it in with my 75 fresh when I sell it. Always good to have that around with a fresh water.
Lorabell, I did checkout filterguys.NET, took me awhile to find it until I tried .net! LOL!!! They do seem to have pretty good prices. So what you are saying is you will run a batch of RO/Di water and store it in buckets until you need it. That seems like a great deal! I do have a sink I could install this on so that I am not hooking it up and putting it away everytime I need to use it. Thanks for that info!
Lights... Well, I am going to go with the T5. As I stated earlier, I think at some point we are going ot throw some corals in, so I want to be prepared for that. I am thinking of getting a 6 or 8 bulb fixture so that I have options on how many bulbs I have going. Maybe with just the live rock, clean up crew and a few fish, all i will need is maybe 3 or 4 lights. put in 3 or 4 bulbs and run with it. Then if I see I need more, I can throw in come more bulbs. I am also considering the LED fixtures, but I need to wait on the aquarium so that I can look at the canopy and see how it is layed out.
As I said in the begining, I want everything hidden, so that will be the main goal and why i will take my time putting this together.
Ok, my next question. I havent figured out the term yet, but I see pictures of peoples tanks once in awhile and I see red stuff on the back walls of the tank. Is that good? I think it looks bad and would like to stay away from it. Can you explain what that is to me?
Once your tank gets established...its actually agood thing....and its very hard to get off....type of coraline algae...it kinda of grows as your rock grows,matures.....its harmless.I cant think of they scientific name.
T5s are a great choice, even in a fowlr, I have a 6 bulb unit.....it houses 3 actinic bulbs and 3 daylite bulbs. I keep this tank on a timer...just some more info...lol.....the actinics come on 2 hours b4 the rest,they stay on 2 hours after the daylite ones go off.....this create a"natural" type setting for my corals....they wake up slowly and go to sleep slowly. In nature the sunlite would tell these animals to "tuck in" for the night. Beins that your are goin all out...and depending on tankplacement u may also choose a unit that offers moonlights...or maybe add them later...Its an absolutely AWESOME look to the tank when all the other lights are off. The tank inhabitants look and act soooooooooooo differantly. I do not have moonlights on my reef....because its in my computer room....if it were in my LR I would have them( were not really in this room at night)...I do however have them on my 55 gall SeaHorse tank and my frag tank.
See were just keepin' ya hoppin!!!!!!!!! I cant wait to see the progress of this tank.
Yep, Coralline Algae, thats what I was talking about. Here is the problem. I think it looks terrible when it is on the walls of the tank. There is no way I could handle that and I know the wife couldnt. If it is on the live rocks, thats fine, but I would rather not have it at all. Is it a must to let this algae populate my tank? What wil I gain and lose by having it or removing it?
I wouldnt say I am going all out, but I do want it to look good. I do plan on moonlights and I guess I just didnt research enough yet as I thought the blue actinic lights were also the moonlights. Glad I know the difference now! I just dont know if the LED fixtures are far enough along technology wise to handle a reef tank. I would like the ability such as what you said to allow the lights to come on like your's. But I will throw the moonlights into the mix as well!
LOL.....I dont mean it that way...lol...You are doing it the RIGHT way......and doing your research.......in the long run..in case u switch up after a while (go with corals) u will be much happier if u start out with the T5s or the metal halides...if u go reef one or the others of these is a must...
Sorry about the filter guys...lol.... at least I got theyre name right....lol...but they are very helpful. Heres another trick....for water making......my GF has the same tank as I do.....she had a sink installed in her garage...great set-up(does in it new trash can also)...however in the summer her water gets kind of warm and very cold in the winter(she has to use a heater to get it to proper temp)....mine is in extra bathroom..in the middle of the house......(and while making your water...u only use the cold water) so I can mix a batch and go......so maybe placement of the unit might be something to think about also.....
Check out this post of mine...i do not want to scare u... AND i DO CLEAN IT UP...BUT i ALSO HAVE 13 TANKS......
It would be kind of hard to keep off the back with a magfloat scraper if you have the back painted black. You'd have to use a scraper with a handle probably every day or go unpainted. Plus you'll have to aquascape so you can get by all of the rocks. Tricky. But it can be done.