Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources (http://www.tropicalfishkeeping.com/)
-   Beginner Saltwater Aquariums (http://www.tropicalfishkeeping.com/beginner-saltwater-aquariums/)
-   -   29 Gallon First timer Saltwater Diary (http://www.tropicalfishkeeping.com/beginner-saltwater-aquariums/29-gallon-first-timer-saltwater-diary-122934/)

McNertney 12-17-2012 07:18 PM

29 Gallon First timer Saltwater Diary
 
Hey Everyone,
Ive been keeping/breeding cichlids and guppies for a long time and ive decided to start a saltwater tank. I plan to take lots and lots of pictures every step of the way. I also plan to incorporate some DIY stuff. I've been lurking around these forums for a while and I think im going for a "Mixed Reef" .. Here are my notes so far (please correct me if i'm wrong anywhere)

Size: 30 Gallon
18" Tall 12" wide 30" Long

Specs I know to aim for:
(Hydrometer)
Salt/Gravity ~1.020 - 1.025
(Thermometer)
Temp: 72-78 degrees

Nitrite, ammonia the obvious zeros

Some things I know I want for sure:
[Janitorial]
Nassarius Snails
(clean the sand)
Peppermint shrimp
(control Aiptasia { pest})
[Corals]
Red and green Zoas. radioactive dragon eye

Not sure on Fish yet. Im taking suggestions.

I plan to have live sand and rock with a sump. Ill be adding a Protein skimmer a little later.
I used this guys idea for an overflow. I used 3/4" pvc instead though. Pix to follow..
Stay tuned....

McNertney 12-17-2012 07:44 PM

The Beginning
 
6 Attachment(s)
Here is the tank and overflow I out together last night. The paint I used is a black silicone spray paint.

McNertney 12-17-2012 09:03 PM

DIY ideas
 
8 Attachment(s)
I have some extra freshwater equipment I wont be needing anymore. The Marineland Magnum 350 might be the most worthless POS canister filter ever made. I want to make it a phosphate reactor or something. What about using the Eheim? I was thinking about using either for a return pump with no filter media in it. A carbon filter perhaps? I dont know, here are a bunch of pictures. Any thoughts/suggestions/criticism of any kind?
**The Magnum 350 was lame because the plastic mesh that holds the carbon warped after a month or so. I tried to use gutter guard to fix it but the carbon got through and messed up the motor magnet. **

Reefing Madness 12-17-2012 11:32 PM

Couple things. Salinity if your going Reef must be kept at 1.025-1.026
Next, you can't use that metal screen in your Salt Water tank. Its going to rust and its going to leach metals into a Reef tank, and the Corals are going to die. Can't do it.

aussieJJDude 12-18-2012 12:09 AM

Love the DIY setup!
I can't wait to see it all done, good luck! :-D

RSully 12-18-2012 03:03 AM

These are my favorite threads to watch. From beginning to end. Reefing Madness will provide you with some great info so read his posts carefully. Looking forward to watching this progress.

McNertney 12-18-2012 11:28 AM

Thanks :)
 
Thanks for the heads up Reefing Madness, I just did some googling and found out that copper and rust can leach from any live rock for up to years :shock: . definitely not using the gutter guard. I also changed my notes for salinity to 1.025-1.026.

I found a LFS that will hook me up with RO/DI water for free If I buy my sea salt from him. He told me I wont need to cycle for very long, about a week, if I use RO/DI water. My cousin has an arrowhead delivery also that I can get in on. Is there any harm in using that instead?

Reefing Madness, I saw your setup. Does making your own water take up all that space or is that just cause your tank is so big? would it even be worth it for me to try that with a tank as small as mine?

Also, is this good enough lighting for what im trying to accomplish?
Amazon.com: Marineland Reef Capable LED Lighting System 18-24-Inch: Pet Supplies
or two of these?
Amazon.com: Marineland ML Double Bright LED Light, 36-Inch to 48-Inch: Pet Supplies

Thanks for all your help and warm welcome everyone. I look forward to this project even more with all this support.

McNertney 12-19-2012 04:09 PM

Water Test
 
12 Attachment(s)
I did a water test last night. I love when stuff works the first time around. I couldn't find a sump small enough for my cabinet (under $100) so I decided to move the aquarium to my desk and modify the drawers. The top drawers fit back in over the pvc. I know the window will be an issue but honestly I never open it cause My neighbor stares too much. Also im going to put a simple solid blue background on the back of the tank. IS that enough?

aussieJJDude 12-19-2012 05:12 PM

LOL, cute tank :-D
at lease you can now look at the fish when you work! :-P

Reefing Madness 12-19-2012 06:38 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by McNertney (Post 1353201)
Thanks for the heads up Reefing Madness, I just did some googling and found out that copper and rust can leach from any live rock for up to years :shock: . definitely not using the gutter guard. I also changed my notes for salinity to 1.025-1.026.

I found a LFS that will hook me up with RO/DI water for free If I buy my sea salt from him. He told me I wont need to cycle for very long, about a week, if I use RO/DI water. My cousin has an arrowhead delivery also that I can get in on. Is there any harm in using that instead?

Reefing Madness, I saw your setup. Does making your own water take up all that space or is that just cause your tank is so big? would it even be worth it for me to try that with a tank as small as mine?

Also, is this good enough lighting for what im trying to accomplish?
Amazon.com: Marineland Reef Capable LED Lighting System 18-24-Inch: Pet Supplies
or two of these?
Amazon.com: Marineland ML Double Bright LED Light, 36-Inch to 48-Inch: Pet Supplies

Thanks for all your help and warm welcome everyone. I look forward to this project even more with all this support.

You can use Purified water. Its usually run through an RO system. My setup for RO is the 55g drum because thats how much water I do change when its time. So, a smaller setup would need smaller storage system. How much is the salt this guy is going to sell you? I still use Instant Ocean to this day, and its only $15 a bag where I am. So, you'd have to to some calculating. My tops offs are about 4-5 gallons every 3-4 days.
Im not a fan of Marineland LEDs, they are only the 1 watt type and won't sustain alot of the Strong Light Corals. If you plan on SPS or Clams, might want to rethink the LEDs.


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