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Discussion Starter #1
I recently posted in this thread about restarting my 55 gallon tank. I am going to start from scratch and do a new cycle in my tank and redecorating.

I would like to switch it to a gold fish aquarium. I never had any experience with gold fish. All my experience is with freshwater tropical fish.

The aquarium is a 55 gallon tank, 48 inches in length, 12 inches tall and I believe 18 inches wide. Can't remember exact dimensions. Has two marine land penguin bio-wheel 350 filters.

I am going to do a fishless cycle, first time doing this so tips on this would help too.

So... any advice on a first time gold fish owner?

How many could I possible put in the tank?
I was thinking 3 or 4 would be about my limit.

Do I need to have a heater?

Any thing else?

Thank you.

Reminder it will be awhile before I add fish into this tank.
 

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Discussion Starter #2
Even some decorating tips too?
I purchased two 22 inch tall plants, and three 4 inch plants to put into the tank. I figured this is sufficient, I heard they need a ton of space to swim.

Do they like to have places to hide or anything similar to that?
 

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I recently posted in this thread about restarting my 55 gallon tank. I am going to start from scratch and do a new cycle in my tank and redecorating.

I would like to switch it to a gold fish aquarium. I never had any experience with gold fish. All my experience is with freshwater tropical fish.

The aquarium is a 55 gallon tank, 48 inches in length, 12 inches tall and I believe 18 inches wide. Can't remember exact dimensions. Has two marine land penguin bio-wheel 350 filters.

I am going to do a fishless cycle, first time doing this so tips on this would help too.

So... any advice on a first time gold fish owner?

How many could I possible put in the tank?
I was thinking 3 or 4 would be about my limit.

Do I need to have a heater?

Any thing else?

Thank you.

Reminder it will be awhile before I add fish into this tank.
You CAN do up to 5 if you really stay on top of your parameters and keep it clean, otherwise stick to 3. If you want comets, you can only have one. You won't need a heater if you keep your house around 70. If you keep it warmer than 75, you need to look into a chiller. Make sure that when you are picking substrate, you pick an extremely fine gravel or use sand. Goldfish are notorious for getting gravel stuck in their mouth or eating it and becoming impacted. Most keepers prefer barebottom and just paint the outside of the bottom black or whatever color they desire. Invest in a quality gel/sinking pellet. Nutrition is key to keeping happy goldies. They won't really use any hiding places and I'm not sure if you bought live or fake plants but they eat most live plants.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
You CAN do up to 5 if you really stay on top of your parameters and keep it clean, otherwise stick to 3. If you want comets, you can only have one. You won't need a heater if you keep your house around 70. If you keep it warmer than 75, you need to look into a chiller. Make sure that when you are picking substrate, you pick an extremely fine gravel or use sand. Goldfish are notorious for getting gravel stuck in their mouth or eating it and becoming impacted. Most keepers prefer barebottom and just paint the outside of the bottom black or whatever color they desire. Invest in a quality gel/sinking pellet. Nutrition is key to keeping happy goldies. They won't really use any hiding places and I'm not sure if you bought live or fake plants but they eat most live plants.
I was thinking about just getting some fancy gold fish. My house is usually 68 during the winter and 75 during the summer. The gravel is on the smaller side. The plants are fake, I knew they ate live plants.

Thank you for this information by the way.
 

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Chillers for large tanks are super expensive - more expensive than the entirety of the setup. In addition to that they are loud and suck electricity. I don't know of anyone who keeps goldfish as has one - they can manage.

I think 3-4 fancy goldfish is good for your tank, but I would recommend upgrading one of the HOBs to a canister. You'll need it. Were it my tank I would upgrade both to canisters. Obviously not something you have to do right away since the fish will likely be on the smaller side.

I would not put a comet in any tank smaller than a pond - they are pond fish.

Sand is an excellent substrate for them. They LOVE sifting through it, and I would hate to take that away from them by doing a bare bottom.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I never had a sand bottom tank.

How is that cleaned? Would I just hover over the sand with a gravel vacuum?
 

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Discussion Starter #9
So I was looking into sand for a substrate in the tank.... I seen a lot of people using black diamond blasting sand grade 20/40 which is pretty fine. Do you believe this would be safe enough for gold fish.

I seen online that people are using it even with their cory cats and have not had any issues.

It is a lot cheaper than going to a pet store. I think I seen it for like $9.00 for a 50lb. bag.
 

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That's about what the pool filter sand costs for a 50 lb bag.

Yes, that's exactly what you do with the vac.
 

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Welcome to the world of goldfish. I've been there for a long time and don't plan to leave any time soon lol!

I would keep the number of fish at 3 or 4 in the tank. Fancy goldfish get pretty large. They aren't as long as the pond goldfish but they maintain a lot of the bulk. With just HOB's you should probably stick to 3 goldfish.

You most certainly don't need a chiller. Goldfish aren't a true coldwater fish like trout. They can easily survive temps of above 80F. Mine do just fine in the summer when it gets 80F. Just make sure you feed them more often at higher temperatures as their metabolism increases in warmer water.

A heater is personal preference. I have one and only set it on 72 in the winter because I don't like sticking my hands in freezing cold water. My house is set to 65F, and the water gets pretty chilly otherwise. So it's really up to you.

As to substrate, I prefer a sand bottom tank. Some people like barebottom because it's easier to clean, but seeing as my goldfish spend like 70% of their time sifting through the sand, I don't think its right to deprive them of that. But sand and HOB filters don't exactly mix in my experience. It's going to come down to what you want to do.

Cleaning sand isn't difficult at all. Just hover the siphon a couple of inches above the substrate and most of the stuff comes up. Unlike with gravel where the crap tends to get caught in the spaces between the particles, there is so little space with sand that not a lot of crap gets down in it.

As Flint mentioned before, nutrition is a key part of fancy goldfish keeping. Quality food is super important because their digestive tracts are morphed. For a pellet food I like New Life Spectrum. My goldfish get their Garlic Guard formula as well as Repashy gel foods. Frozen foods are also great for young goldfish as they need a lot more protein than older fish.
 

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I'm glad you mentioned sand and HoB filters - not a great combination. Certainly workable though, but just another reason to swap to canister filtration as they are impervious to sand :)
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Thank you so much guys. I will probably do a sand bottom then. As to switching to canister filters, I may wait on that. I don't have the funds to set something up that extreme.

Do I have to stick to the recommended amount of sand? I read that it should be a pound per gallon.

Is it okay if I was to do less? Just the sand wouldn't be as deep in the tank. I don't see that it would be a problem.

It is always exciting to do something new. Even though it wont be for another month or so until I can add fish. Well I have done fish in cycles. Are gold fish okay for something like that?
 

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I have less than an inch of sand in the bottom of mine. The inch of sand thing is for plants and stuff. Roots need room to grow. Goldfish just want a layer to play around with. A single 50lb bag will be more than enough.

Eh. Just because a fish is hardy enough to do a fish in cycle doesn't mean you should. I've found my fancy goldfish are more prone to health issues than my tropicals, so reducing the amount of stress on them is paramount. I personally wouldn't do a fish in cycle with them.
 

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I would put enough sand in that you can aqua scape with. Of course the goldfish will do their own aqua scraping but even then there needs to be enough to do so. It's certainly easy enough to add more sand if you feel you need it, or remove it if you find you don't. Too, bacteria live on the sand (some people feel more so than in the filter) so that's something to keep in mind as well. Of course the law of diminishing returns applies and too much can be a bad thing.

There are some very affordable filter options once you step away from the big names. I like the sunsuns, which are sold on eBay (as well as other places). They are very affordable.
 

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sunsun hw 302 is $52 with media and free shipping on ebay you would want the 3 prong us standard plug from seller techntoy.two of these on a 55 would be good. i have a sunsun for my goldies.i really like it.
 

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sunsun hw 302 is $52 with media and free shipping on ebay you would want the 3 prong us standard plug from seller techntoy.two of these on a 55 would be good. i have a sunsun for my goldies.i really like it.

Agreed - I would put two of that model on the tank as well. Yes it comes with some media, but I found I still needed to buy more. I like to fill my baskets. However, special care should be taken to ensure that the baskets all fit together or else it can cause problems, and overfilling is a sure way to prevent them from more or less locking in place, which in turn interferes with how the filter head is clamped of the body potentially leading to leakage.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
I will look into canister filters. Maybe with my tax refund I may get one but other responsibilities come first with my university expense.

I think I could get by with the hob filters if I do enough water changes, I assume.
 

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The HOBs will do you fine, canisters will just provide better filtration. I've always kept my goldies with HOBs. Don't stress too much about it, but you should plan on canisters in the long-run. It'll make your job that much easier. :)
 
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