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Starting a 47-55 Gallon saltwater

5107 Views 13 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  usmc121581
So, today I went to my LFS and was looking at a 55 Gallon (All tall tanks) and she was also trying to sell a 47 Gallon. I asked if I could get a deal if I bought both and she offered me a very good deal. I want to give one of the tanks to my oscars to upgrade their tank size, the other I would like to go saltwater. I really don't know anything about it and I'm trying to make a specific checklist (exact item name) and price check to see if it would be feasible. So, assuming I have the tank/tank stand..what else is needed? If possible, I'd like to get items that work for the larger tank and if needed used in the smaller tank. I know I'd like to have as much filtration as possible....under the substrate and more, but then again I'm coming from a freshwater background. Thought I'd post this as I do some research and get back to my LFS on deciding if I want to upgrade my tanks.
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But I think there's a sticky on this forum, which contains SW equipment requirements.

Have you thought about if you want FO, FOWLR, or Reef?
Eddie, I think I'd like to have FOWLR.
Looking at the sticky, which is very helpful, what brands/types would be acceptable for the tank? Where should one purchase these if they're available online? The list that I was able to create from the sticky is this:

Protein Skimmer
Wet/Dry Filter
Return Pump
Air Pump
Airline Hose
Check Valve
Saltwater Test Kits
Gravel Vacuum (Is this different for saltwater?)
Powerheads/Submersible Pump

I don't know any brands or where to locate these, nor do I know anything about prices. Thanks for pointing out the sticky though, I feel like I'm in the woods but at least now I can see the trees! :lol:
See less See more seems to be the most popular place to get these things.
You can elimate the air pump, air hose, and air stone. As these are not required. As for the gravel vac. you can use the freshwater hose, there is no difference. For everything else just look around and get different prices for everything else. Are you going to use live rock?
Yeah, I plan on using live rock
out of everything on your list you left out lighting. that is the most important piece in a saltwater setup.
Okay so to correct that, I would need what type of lighting? Is it the same, or not?
Why is lighting so important? We have a regular flourescent bulb on our 55 gallon tank. Is that sufficient?

usmc121581 said:
out of everything on your list you left out lighting. that is the most important piece in a saltwater setup.
No, the light that the coralline algea that live on the live rock needs at least 10,000k spectrum lighting. You can get away with getting a flourescent bulb that is called a 50/50. Anyone of this bulbs will do.

I would go with the one in the middle since it has all the light that you will need for now in one bulb. Then eventually I would upgrade to a better lighting system. That bulb will be good for you for now.
See less See more
Well, I don't mind getting the good system now for the tank, I just don't know which ones to get. That's what I'm trying to do now, figure out each item to get and create an entire list so that way I don't forget anything, that way once the startup cost is out of the way I'm sort of smooth sailing with small expenses from there. Is the one in the middle worth getting and keeping?
Does this mean that all of the algea in the piece of live rock I bought over a month ago are likely now dead because I've had a regular flourescent bulb in place this whole time? Damn Petland! :evil:
Does the live rock still have the color that it did when you bought? Coraline algae loves actinic blue actinic light and hates white light. To give your coraline a boost, increase your blue light and decrease your white light. Coraline grows best deep in the ocean where only blue spectrum light can penetrate. When starting a reef tank, allow the blue actinic bulbs to run 24 hours a day for two weeks. If you can afford it go with this lighting:
I don't know how to make a link. I use this same light fixture on 4 different timers. But if you cannot afford it yet the 50/50 will do good for awhile
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