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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
OKay, so i decided to take the plunge from freshwater to saltwater.

I've read soo many books and sites that my head is now spinning:help:!

Basically my goal is to try to start with the best easiest to use & quietest operating products so their is no need to do the dreaded upgrade. The only thing I am certain of so far is that I want fish, shrimp and crabs! (my god, I can't believe I just said I want crabs..lol)

My main questions is on Protein skimmers. From the research I have conducted thus far, I've heard that Aqua C Remora Pro W/ Mag 3 Pump are the way to go as far as ease of operation, durability, noise factor, and performance factor. I have absolutely no room for a sump (stand has 2 openings covered by door that measure 16 & 1/2" L x 14 & a quarter" W x 25 & 1/2" H ) and the room behind the tank will be less that 3" if I upgrade to the 90 gallon glass tank that I really want...recommendations?

Also, does anyone have any experience with the Eheim Pro 3 2080 or the Eheim Pro 3e 2078? Would these kick butt for a 90 gallon?


Here's a list of the items I have so far with the last 2 being items I'm planning on purchasing:
**55 gallon tank with glass cover (really wanting to upgrade to a 90 gallon glass tank with a glass cover in the near future)
**Coralife 48" 260 watt lunar & (backup--->)110 watt compact Fluorescent lighting
**(2) emperor 400's (want to do away with, not enough room for them IF I get the 90...Thinking ?Eheim Pro 3 2080 or possibly Eheim Pro 3e 2078?? for the future upgrade?)
**Reefmaster RO/DI 100gpd System
**2 Maxi-jet 1200 power heads
**RedSea Wavemaster Pro
**300 watt theo hydor heater
**2 self stick digital thermometers (placed top left and bottom right)
**48lb bucket of Marine Land Instant Ocean Sea Salt
**Instant Ocean Hydrometer
**API Saltwater master test kit
**digital timer
**Paletta's "The New Marine Aquarium" book
**tetra deep water 96 & whisper 30-60 air pump (recently informed not needed for saltwater)
***Also..Thinking Live Rock and 1" Live Sand as Substrate (thought gobies and crabs would appreciate the sand)? Am I heading in the right direction on this one?
***Also planning on purchasing RO/DI system

Is there anything I am missing? Recommendations would be greatly appreciated!


Some of the inhabitants I've narrowed it down to:
*Aquacultured Clown Percula
*Coral Beauty angelfish
*Royal Gramma
*Orange Spotted Lawnmower
*Bangaii Cardinal
*Green Chromis
*Citron Clown Goby
*Green Clown Goby
*Firefish Goby
*Yellow Jawfish
*Tangaroa Shrimpgoby
*Pennant Fairy Wrasse
*Blueleg Hermit Crab
*Scarlet Hermit Crab
*Cleaner Shrimp
*Coral Banded Shrimp
*Peppermint Shrimp

(oh, and yea..I researched the adult size of all listed...how many inch of fish for a 55 gallon/90 gallon....seen it varies highly and would like to know rough estimate to give me a better idea on what to stalk?)
Also, if their is something on my list that is a nightmare to keep or take care of...by all means...please let me know!

Sorry about all the questions..I just want to start on the right foot!

PS. I've already tried my local pet store...despite having several saltwater systems on display they were pretty much clueless on how to maintain them, let alone being able to recommend which products were the best. The only advice they gave me was "stay away from things such as corals and anenomes" ?
 

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Just Another Reefer
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Welcome to TRT! :thumbup:

It is better to ask now then regret later.

If u r going to a 90 gallon soon it would be better to have live rock(80-100lbs), sump and protein skimmer.

If the 55 gallon can't accommodate this a good hang on back skimmer such as AquaC Remmora would be better than the emperor filter, although u could use it to run charcoal pads. I would suggest getting live rock about 40lbs as this will suffice as a filtration system for saltwater tank. U can probably store the airstone and pump for an emergency.

As for lighting I have a 48" coralife fixture pc's w/moolights for sale. It will be okay for start-up but if u are considering corals a T5 fluorescent or Metal Halide Fixture would be a better choice.

Check out the archives on this site for more info on starting your tank. A good beginner book is " The New Marine Aquarium" by Paletta it gives step by step instruction.

HTH

Doug :cool:
 

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I second the recommendation of The New Marine Aquairum-- it's been a lifesaver-- with the caveat that it's written for fish-only (no coral) tanks, so some of the advice isn't applicable or complete for a reefkeeper.

My only other advice would be to reconsider the damsels. A lot of people say that multiple damsels will get along as long as you only keep one of each damsel species, but that hasn't been my experience. Maybe someone else will offer different advice, though.
 

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welcome to TRT

Air pumps aren't necessary or even favorable for a reef tank
I'd also look into an RO/DI unit for your water supply to mix your artificial salt water and for topping off due to evaporation
 

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Enjoy it now
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welcome aboard mate!


**55 gallon-->upgrading to 90 gallon glass with glass cover Lose the glass cover. it will prohibit proper gas exchange
**(2) emperor 400's (want to do away with, not enough room for them when I get the 90)...Thinking ?Fluval FX5 Canister? Dont use a canister in a reef tank but fine for a fish-only tank. Nitrate buildup
**110 watt compact Fluorescent lighting>>planning on upgrading to ?Coralife 260watt lunar fine for fish only but not recommended for reef
**300 watt theo hydor heater not familiar with that brand but 300 watts is a good size for a 90
**2 self stick digital thermometers (placed top left and bottom right) From experience, I'd recommend the floating type. the digitals are not very accurate and if they get wet, they stop working
**tetra deep water 96 & whisper 30-60 air pump (recommendations on 1 that will rock for a 90 gallon?) air pumps aren't needed nor recommended in this hobby unless you're growing phytoplankton
**48lb bucket of Marine Land Instant Ocean Sea Salt good stuff
**Instant Ocean Hydrometer I'd recommend a 40 dollar refractometer from Marine depot. They're more accurate and last longer
**API Saltwater master test kit Not a bad kit from what I hear. I personally use salifert kits
**RedSea Wavemaster Pro Wish I had one :( Be careful what pumps you use this with. Most pumps don't like having their voltages alternated
**Still need powerheads for the Wavemaster Pro (read that the Maxi-Jet 1200's are the best to use with it) ??how many will I need?? and is their anything better that will work with the Wavemaster Pro? Yup, maxi-jet is the preference with this unit ;) But, the 1200 might not be enough water flow for your liking.
**digital timer I'm looking at a ReefKeeper2 myself for automation and timings. If you don't wanna spend the 270 bucks now, just goto HomeDepot and get a digital timer from the christmas section. I got 6 last year for 2 bucks each. They've never let me down.
 

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I've got the REEF rash!
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Welcome to TRT! I have a Remora Aqua C Pro and took it off and put on a Coralife hang on skimmer and it's quiter Skims 100 % better.It cthinner to the wall( That one I didn't beleave till I measured it)The only thing the remora had over the coralife was the collection cup is lower from the top(big deal!)
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thank you for all the great advice! Keep It coming..lol
I do have "The New Marine Aquarium" by Paletta (it was the first thing I bought when considering the change over).
After reading I'm leaning towards a 90gallon without coral (thinking live rock and live sand as the substrate) and a mix of some of the creatures above (took note on the Damsel warning). RO/DI system is first on my list of things still needed. No room for the sump, so thinking the canister filter hidden in the cabinet would be better than the emperors hanging on the back and hogging up valuable space. What's the best maxi-jets for a 90gallon? The coralife 250watt lunar is looking pretty tempting! Still going back and forth on the skimmer...which one kicks butt without needing a sump to stick it in?
WIsh i had a good store in my area, but they were fairly clueless and basically couldn't recommend anything other than a book...and can you believe they actually had reef tanks set up in the store?!
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
your lfs has a reef set up but doesnt know how to care for it? that sounds about right.
Yep! thank goodness I came across this site or I would definately have a migraine at this point. Thank You ALL for taking your time to answer my numerous questions along with providing me with useful advice, can't tell you how much I truly appreciate it!
 

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I don't know if you answered this already but you don't have the tank yet, why don't you get the 90 gallon tank you want with built in overflows and do a small sump under the tank. That way you can put all your heaters, skimmers and ugly stuff out of the main tank?
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
My 90 gallon stand only has 2 available small openings with doors (openings are cube shaped...16 & 1/2"L x 14 & a quarter" W x 25). One of which I use to place the power strip for all the plugs in addition to foods for the fishies.

Also, upgrading to the 90gallon that I really want will leave me less than a inch behind the tank...at the most with resituating maybe 3" (the stand fits VERY tightly on all 3 sides, with the front being accessible)...so that's why I was hoping for a canister filter and wondering if a protein skimmer that sits below is possible without having to have a sump?

I don't know much about "sumps" but is it honestly possible for one to be THAT small (see measurements above) and yet be compat. with the 90 gallon??

I would LOVE to keep as much as possible out of the tank!I hate that I have to "See" all the equipment in the 55gal I currently have!
 

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Just Another Reefer
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It may be better to invest in a better stand.

For a 90 gallon Fish Only With Live Rock (fowlr) tank a cannister and skimmer combination might be OK.

A coventional 48" stand will give enough space for sump.

JMO

Doug
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
It may be better to invest in a better stand.

For a 90 gallon Fish Only With Live Rock (fowlr) tank a cannister and skimmer combination might be OK.

A coventional 48" stand will give enough space for sump.

JMO

Doug
Definately must keep the current stand...ordered it to specifically fit in the tight corner and match bedroom set. It's like a member of the family :agree:
 

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Hey there... I am new to this site, but am getting alot of good stuff off of it. I have had a 92 corner saltwater tank w/ liverock, and fish... but no corals, and now I also have a 144 half circle where i am starting corals now. (believe me, a mistake! I have to get on a ladder just to feed my fish, lol)

Well, If i can give my imput to you, I have had the 92 corner running for 5 years without a protien skimmer and have had better luck with this tank than anyone else I know. My skimmer on my 144 is not working now, too many bubbles! but working on it... i know i need it for corals.

DAMSELS!!!! GREEN CROMIS! when you cycle your tank, it is best to use damsels... hardy, and cheap. get these fish first... I buy all the damsels i can find, and live rock first to cycle the tank... then i take all of them out except the green or blue cromis and the grey ones with yellow spotts... dont remember the names... these are very dosile and can be kept with any fish, crabs and shrimp... buy them in schools... 4 to 5, so that they can swim together. they live better that way.

I would stay away from the blue and yellow belly damsels.... I would throw in a yellow tang... and maybe another with a different body type.

What I do is base what I buy on purposes.... First the fish to cycle the tank... then start with the cleaners... look for bottom feeders, middle feeders, and top feeders... I would wait to put snails and red leg hermits til you get some algae. Starfish and shrimp clean the bottom along with scooter blennies and gobies and crabs... middle feeders...like tangs, royan gram,wrasses(by the way, for beginners the sixline wrasse is usually the best one) firefish, etc... top feeders... cardinal fish, and clownfish(if you dont have anenomes)

I also use a mixture of live sand and crushed coral, cause it is cleaner, but thats just me...

hope this helps even a little!
samantha
 

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Enjoy it now
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Hey there... I am new to this site, but am getting alot of good stuff off of it. I have had a 92 corner saltwater tank w/ liverock, and fish... but no corals, and now I also have a 144 half circle where i am starting corals now. (believe me, a mistake! I have to get on a ladder just to feed my fish, lol)

Well, If i can give my imput to you, I have had the 92 corner running for 5 years without a protien skimmer and have had better luck with this tank than anyone else I know. My skimmer on my 144 is not working now, too many bubbles! but working on it... i know i need it for corals.

DAMSELS!!!! GREEN CROMIS! when you cycle your tank, it is best to use damsels... hardy, and cheap. get these fish first... I buy all the damsels i can find, and live rock first to cycle the tank... then i take all of them out except the green or blue cromis and the grey ones with yellow spotts... dont remember the names... these are very dosile and can be kept with any fish, crabs and shrimp... buy them in schools... 4 to 5, so that they can swim together. they live better that way.

I would stay away from the blue and yellow belly damsels.... I would throw in a yellow tang... and maybe another with a different body type.

What I do is base what I buy on purposes.... First the fish to cycle the tank... then start with the cleaners... look for bottom feeders, middle feeders, and top feeders... I would wait to put snails and red leg hermits til you get some algae. Starfish and shrimp clean the bottom along with scooter blennies and gobies and crabs... middle feeders...like tangs, royan gram,wrasses(by the way, for beginners the sixline wrasse is usually the best one) firefish, etc... top feeders... cardinal fish, and clownfish(if you dont have anenomes)

I also use a mixture of live sand and crushed coral, cause it is cleaner, but thats just me...

hope this helps even a little!
samantha
Welcome to TRT!

I disagree with using damsels or chromis for cyclying. That's not very nice to the poor fellas.
 

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lol, so what would u use instead? just live rock or sand takes wayyyy to long. I usually add about 20 damsels and wind up loosing about 2...

with live rock and damsels... about 4 weeks, max!
 
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