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Shark..but a friendly one
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
A HOT mid-summer break from yard work and relaxing, so a great time to see if'n we can't get a thread going.....'summer semester' as it were. ;)

Way back in the early 80's when I first started dabbling in the marine hobby, I was introduced to 'skimmers'. Something we never had in the fresh water hobby......Basically a cheap, VERY CHEAP acrylic gizmo with an air stone that hung on the back of the tank. It was all Greek to me, BUT WE HAD TO HAVE ONE IN THIS HOBBY....OK.

When I got back in the hobby a handful of years + ago, I probably carried a preconceived mental opinion of HOB SKIMMERS from back in the day. I also saw where a lot of folks were saying, 'Well if you HAVE TO you can always use an HOB skimmer.'. Just reinforced my mental image of them.

Started out with a sump, and an IN-SUMP Bubble Magus Curve 7......PITA! Worked great, I think. Plenty of yuck coming out, BUT OH how I hated crawling under my tank to clean my sump, and skimmer......probably only got cleaned every handful of months. Finally got rid of THAT set up, and went sump'less....YEAH!!!!!!

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And always a fan of 'bigger must be better', I built my own 6' Monster skimmer.......a counter current air stone driven beast.....OH, that could make some serious YUCK, and I didn't have to bend over......more like standing on my tippy toes at times.
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After 3-4 years THAT started to bore me, and spent less time cleaning it, and making my own air stones.....MUCH cheaper, but still one extra thing to do on my busy plate.

So did some researching, and dreaming, and was hooked on getting a LifeReef skimmer.....you know, another 6' beast. Well after saving my pennies up, I gave Jeff a call.....owner of LifeReef. I told him what I WANTED, and he schooled me right there on skimmers......down graded my wish list, and told me I needed his HOB skimmer......a 24" beast that hangs on the back of my tank. 馃馃ズ Noooooo....NOT an HOB toy skimmer!

Jeff schooled me a little more.....and a more knowledgeable, straight shooter, not trying to up grade me to anything, other than wanting a happy customer. So I took the time to learn.
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LifeReef HVS3-24" HOB protein skimmer.

For about the same price as other 'premium quality' skimmers, so isn't a cheap piece of trash from ....(insert your own pet peev country here).....

But I tell Ya what......I have never been happier, and have never 2nd guessed my choice.....Ease of maintenance, and convenience, and heck, even looks. It is caring for my over fed 210 gallon 'softies' tank with no problems.

I have missed a lot of years making poor choices and extra work for myself because of a 'perceived myth' that HOB SKIMMERS were junk, and a last choice.

Has anyone got other myths, or bad advice, or salesmen's pitches to share? Lets hear them, and see if'n we can't help folks out.
Peace,
Hack
 

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Probably number one myth.
your nurtreints must be super low for corals to thrive. As long as you don鈥檛 let your numbers get too high and keep them stable corals often have much better color if your numbers aren鈥檛 kept super low.
 

Shark..but a friendly one
Joined
16,023 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
A big AGREE! Every time I've tried to go 'ULTRA LOW', my system suffered.

I do have a 'softies' tank, so my nutrients are higher out of necessity than would be a strict SPS tank. I run my NO3 levels between +0 and 5 ppm......any lower than that, my tank has issues.....above that, none, and have had it WAY above that.

Hack
 

Shark..but a friendly one
Joined
16,023 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
How about 'chasing numbers' vs 'stability? YES, I think standard agreed upon parameters are a good thing, and should be shot for in our marine aquaria. But I think over the years we've seen tight/rigid 'chasing' of those numbers has become more concerned with stability over trying to hit EVERY NUMBER dead on.
A stable reef seems to have become the preferred goal we suggest folks now shoot for.
Hack
 

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It is very hard to keep a reef stable at the low end without expensive equipment, in my opinion.
I could be wrong but it seems that way to me. It is much easier to run at a slightly higher level, and corals seem to look better at these rates anyway. Stable is best, you can always slowly try to reduce them once they are stable.
 
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