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Saltwater tank

This is a discussion on Saltwater tank within the Beginner Saltwater Aquariums forums, part of the Saltwater Fish and Coral Reef Tanks category; --> After doing all of this research I feel like I have been working on my undergrad thesis paper again. Anyways I have some more ...

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Old 03-15-2009, 09:41 PM   #31
 
After doing all of this research I feel like I have been working on my undergrad thesis paper again. Anyways I have some more things I have been mulling over and could use some opinions and quality information about these ideas. As it is known I want to do a 75 gallon tank with a center overflow, and I will build a custom stand for it to accommodate anything I need. However, I have come up with a few ideas for this tank and without delay:

Mechanical Items:
Lights - 48" Nova Extreme Pro HO T5 6x54 watt
- 2 Aqualight Lunar Blue-Moon-Glow
Sump - 30 gallon long 36x12x17, not designed yet
Protein Skimmer - Coralife Superskimmer 125
Return Pump - 634 gph Eheim 1260
Powerheads - 2- 850 gph Hydor Koralia 3
Heaters - 2- 250 watt Marineland Stealth Heaters

Inverts & Corals -
2-Skunk Cleaner Shrimp, Pacific Cleaner Shrimp, Scarlet Cleaner Shrimp (Lysmata amboinensis)
2-Bumble Bee Snails (Pusiostoma Medicaria)
1-Orange Linckia Starfish
-Pulsing Xenia
-Button Polyps
-hopefully many other "beginner" corals and others as I become more experienced with coral keeping

Fish -
2-Ocellaris clownfish (Amphiprion ocellaris)
1-Blue Hippo Tang (Paracanthurus hepatus)
1-Royal Gramma (Gramma loreto)
1-Yellow Tang (Zebrasoma flavescens)
1-Neon Goby (Elacatinus Oceanops)
2-Banggai Cardinal (Pterapogon Kauderni)
1- Scooter Dragonet (Synchiropus Ocellatus)

If anyone could give me their opinions about this setup I would greatly appreciate it. Also, I want to put this tank in my living room, which is on the first floor above my basement, so I will add beams and posts to reenforce the floor. With that being said I want to build that little area into a supply cabinet with two trash cans for mixing water. Now, I do not know very much about auto top offs so if some one could educate me on them and anything else I would need to set one up. Also, if there is any equipment I have not thought of please feel free to educate me about them.
Thanks everyone.
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Old 03-15-2009, 10:10 PM   #32
 
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i have heard the coralife skimmer isnt very effective, however i do not have experience with it. if i was in your shoes i would read online reviews of skimmers. some are worth your money as others are worth headaches.
as for the orange star i would wait atleast a few months before adding this. bumble bee snails i have heard to be predatory.
when you get the bangaiis be sure that they are tank bred. wild caughts seem to die in sort order in your tank due to catching methods as well as their numbers in the wild are at a low. i actually think they are on the warning list of endangerment. however they are successfully bred in captivity and make great additions granted you get tank breds. if the store of purchase doesnt know the source i suggest shopping else where.
the auto top off is going to be in the basement directly under the tank? if your planning to have your RO/DI on a top off ( to fill the bucket by itself ) look into solinoids (sp?)
a top off is simple. its a float switch that when raised or lowered it shuts something on or off. get the one that has 2 float switches on it. this is a safety measure so that something will not overflow or your pump wont burn out from running dry depending how you set it up.
this is going to be a very nice setup. trust and believe your hard work and research will pay off without a doubt. im looking forward to more progress so dont be shy and keep us updated.
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Old 03-16-2009, 08:33 PM   #33
 
I looked through quite a few reviews and it said that the Coralife was pretty good, was there any others that you can recommend that are any better?

Also, can anyone give me some opinions on what order to stock the tank? I know the cleaner crew should go in first, then probably the clowns, but how should I go about it after that?

Also, as far as the snails and shrimps go, would two shrimps be enough or too many and can anyone recommend a good snail setup to help clean and control things for me? Oh, and my daughter's tank is now being overrun by pond snails right now, and I hate them because they are a nuisance, and they reproduce asexually. Do marine snails do the same or do they actually have to mate?

Thanks for the info on the wild vs. tank raised, I think it is important to help protect animals that are in danger in the wild.

I honestly do not know how I am going to setup the auto top off, if I get on, a buddy of mine was telling me about a guy he knew that had his set up with one, and I was trying to get more info about it. Like I said, since I am going to reenforce the floor and finish the basement, I might put the buckets underneath it, if I can, and finish the basement to where I can use that area for that and a little more for family storage.
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Old 03-16-2009, 09:15 PM   #34
 
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On stocking, the list looks good. I would be certain to add both Tangs at the same time and add them to the aquarium as your final selections. They will become very territorial once established.

I do think you have some more planning when it comes to equipment. I think the return sump pump could be a little shy for your needs, especially after the head pressure reduces the water flow. I also agree that the Coralife is at the low end of the skimmer line for your type setup. I would consider the Red Sea Berlin skimmer Berlin X2 Venturi Skimmer | Venturi Models | Protein Skimmers | Aquarium - ThatPetPlace.com if price is a concern. If money is not an issue, go ahead and upgrade now to an ASM model In-Sump Protein Skimmer - G-1X - 150 gallon - 22 1/2 in. high | Venturi Models | Protein Skimmers | Aquarium - ThatPetPlace.com.

On a final note, I would strongly encourage every marine hobbyist to purchase a UV Sterilizer. I know these unitsare not an everyday recommendation, but if it saves the life of 1 fish then it pays for itself. They are not expensive and in my opinion dramatically increase your odds of success. And yes, you can use them on a reef system.
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Old 03-16-2009, 09:45 PM   #35
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fishdad1 View Post
I looked through quite a few reviews and it said that the Coralife was pretty good, was there any others that you can recommend that are any better?

Also, can anyone give me some opinions on what order to stock the tank? I know the cleaner crew should go in first, then probably the clowns, but how should I go about it after that?

Also, as far as the snails and shrimps go, would two shrimps be enough or too many and can anyone recommend a good snail setup to help clean and control things for me? Oh, and my daughter's tank is now being overrun by pond snails right now, and I hate them because they are a nuisance, and they reproduce asexually. Do marine snails do the same or do they actually have to mate?

Thanks for the info on the wild vs. tank raised, I think it is important to help protect animals that are in danger in the wild.

I honestly do not know how I am going to setup the auto top off, if I get on, a buddy of mine was telling me about a guy he knew that had his set up with one, and I was trying to get more info about it. Like I said, since I am going to reenforce the floor and finish the basement, I might put the buckets underneath it, if I can, and finish the basement to where I can use that area for that and a little more for family storage.
As for stocking i agree with the tangs last, same time. Clowns first, even with the bangaii. QT your fish in a seperate tank a month or so in advance before adding to the display!
I like the ASM brand. G1 sounds good to me, even better a G2 as over skimming is better then under skimming. I had a asm mini G running on a smaller tank and really liked it. Ive heard some decent things about berlin too, just do not have any experience with the brand.

Your going to see a diatom bloom shortly after having your live rock in your tank. This usually indicates its time to add your snails. Your going to want to test your water parameters first to make sure as all inverts are sensitive. I like to start with a few and slowly build up. You can add more at any time, and this is better because you dont want to start out with a million and starve them out. I like a mixture of different kinds of snails. Astreas are good algae eaters but they cant re-flip themselves back over in the sand, ceriths and nerites are other good algae eaters, mexican turbo snails are good to have too but are large and will knock over loose corals ( not so much a big deal ) nassarius snails are good for eating left over foods and stirring sand, stomatallas are good algae eaters and interesting looking. As for crabs i avoid them. This includes hermit crabs as they will kill snails for their shells and alot of times decide they dont even want that shell. Emerald crabs tend to be alright until they realize theres better food to be had in the tank. Crabs are a personal prefference. The cleaner shrimp arnt much of cleaners when it comes to cleaning the tank. Yes, they will grab some left over foods and clean fish (which is awesome) but wont really do much otherwise. Im very fond of skunk cleaner shrimp. Pistol shrimp are the same, i have to spot feed mine which at the moment i dont even know where it is. I see him all over the place in my tank, usually he is restricted to his burrow but i guess hes on the prowl for food. Marine snails do not reproduce like pest or ponds snails in freshwater. It would be great if they did as some snails are $1-3 a peice but i suggest starting with a few until your tank builds up more food for them and then getting them in bulk, saving a ton of money. My reefing club has invert group buys like twice a year. If you can find a local reefing club, you'll save money. Stomatalla snails will reproduce, i prob. have a couple hundred of them, but due to their soft shells they can fit in small places and tend to hide most of the day, besides so much more is going on in my tank that your not looking at snails. Ive had ceriths lay eggs in my tank a bunch of times, dont think they ever made it.

A tip for the auto top off is dont drill a hole in your floor, drill a hole in the wall then go down to the basement. You'll have an easier time putting a square of sheet rock over the hole in the wall then replacing the wood on the floor at a later date.

Im really excited for this tank!
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Old 03-16-2009, 09:47 PM   #36
 
Pasfur, thanks for your input. I will look into both of those and try to come up with something, and look into the uv sterilizer as well.

I think I am getting close to having most of this figured out, and I have you all to thank for a lot of it. Now I just have to figure out three things: how I am going to plumb everything, how to setup a auto top off if I do that route, and how to design the sump to maximize the refugium and still have room for back flow. Hopefully someone will be kind enough to help me design sump, wink wink nudge nudge. Again thank you all for all of your help it is greatly appreciated.
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Old 03-16-2009, 09:49 PM   #37
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fishdad1 View Post
Inverts & Corals -
2-Skunk Cleaner Shrimp, Pacific Cleaner Shrimp, Scarlet Cleaner Shrimp (Lysmata amboinensis)
2-Bumble Bee Snails (Pusiostoma Medicaria)
1-Orange Linckia Starfish
-Pulsing Xenia
-Button Polyps
-hopefully many other "beginner" corals and others as I become more experienced with coral keeping

Fish -
2-Ocellaris clownfish (Amphiprion ocellaris)
1-Blue Hippo Tang (Paracanthurus hepatus)
1-Royal Gramma (Gramma loreto)
1-Yellow Tang (Zebrasoma flavescens)
1-Neon Goby (Elacatinus Oceanops)
2-Banggai Cardinal (Pterapogon Kauderni)
1- Scooter Dragonet (Synchiropus Ocellatus)
i have heard of bumble bee snails being predatory but im not sure on that. the linkia should be added later down the road when the tanks more established. those corals sound good to start with.

i would add the clowns, bangaii and neon goby all at the same time. i would then wait a month or two adding the royal gramma. another 2-3 months and add the scooter dragonet ( they need good established tanks ) and then another month adding both tangs. this is how i would stock the tank with that list.
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Old 03-16-2009, 09:55 PM   #38
 
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Originally Posted by fishdad1 View Post
Pasfur, thanks for your input. I will look into both of those and try to come up with something, and look into the uv sterilizer as well.

I think I am getting close to having most of this figured out, and I have you all to thank for a lot of it. Now I just have to figure out three things: how I am going to plumb everything, how to setup a auto top off if I do that route, and how to design the sump to maximize the refugium and still have room for back flow. Hopefully someone will be kind enough to help me design sump, wink wink nudge nudge. Again thank you all for all of your help it is greatly appreciated.
plumbing everything is as simple as using PVC, the 2 part solution that bonds it, and allowing it to fully dry. Using two 45s in your plumbing set up is better then using one 90 as it is less flow restricting.

as for sumps mine goes like this

| inlet, skimmer section | bubble trap | return pump | bubble trap | refugium, inlet |

so i have my overflow split going to either side of the sump ( my new tank has 2 downs so i wont need to split that one ) and my return pump goes up, is "T'd" off to a ball valve which returns water to the refugium section. Opening and closing that ball valve allows me to fine tune the water getting pumped back up to the tank.
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