The Reef Tank banner

Starting a 37T reef tank...

649 Views 6 Replies 2 Participants Last post by  dady562
Ok, I received a 37T tank from my uncle and my daughter wanted a finding nemo tank...

Currently I have a fresh water tank running. Just for looks while I get all the necessary items needed to run a proper reef tank.

I have:
37T plexiglass tank.
Rena Filstar XP3 Canister Filter.
In tank filter/powerhead. not sure type or brand.

I plan on having:
Live sand (how much do I need for either DSB or SHB. Which is recommended since it is a Tall tank)
Live Rock (how many pounds?)

Do I need:
sump tank? how big?
Protein skimmer? how big and brands recommended?
Lighting? I want to upgrade to LED... I know expensive. (replacing current canopy lighting.)

1 - 7 of 7 Posts
1) drop the canister filter. It really wont do you any good, if you really need mechanical filtration for your feel goods, then get a sock filter with your sump. Marinedepot sells a kickbutt 4" sock filter holder that is adjustable. The reefkeeping made easy is a great resourse, but it takes awhile to read.

2) You dont need a sump, but they are nice. The hardest part of a small tank is keeping everything in balance, a sump increases the volume of your system without taking more floor space. This helps alliviate some of the stress of having a small tank. A sump will give you space to put your equipment so that its not in the tank itself. I would suggest getting the largest tank you can fit under your stand.

3) Dont worry about live sand. Most people here run Barebottom since it is less difficult to keep the tank clean. If you must have sand (I hate BB look) then do a shallow sand bed and siphon it weekly.

4) Live rock: As much as you think looks good. The 2# per gallon rule was made by people that sold liverock.

5) LEDS. There are some cool DIYs on the forum, AI SOL are highly regarded. I have Ecotech Radions and I think they are the Shnizzle Dizzle.

If your doing a Finding Nemo tank... DONT get a tang (Dori) your tank is too small and your tang WILL die. It would be like keeping a Greyhound in a studio apartment. You need to wait atleast 6 months for an anemone.
See less See more
I dont like the BB look on a tank. I plan on doing the live sand, SSB, and live rock. I already have the canister filter, can I incorporate that into the sump? and do I need a protein skimmer?

As far as LED's, I found a website,, and found kits, yet they dont have a kits that would fit in my canopy. Should I just ditch the canopy, and have an open top fish tank?
First, dont get live sand, its a waste of money. Most of the bacteria etc will be dead, and so it will have filled the sand with nutrients from their decay. Just get regular dry sand, in the end it will be better. With liverock you will get all the cycling power you need. Second, the canister filter is a waste. It will do nothing other than trap detrius is a high flow, high oxygen environment. Unless you clean it out every day, or every other day, that detrius will rot and pollute your tank water. Sock filters are much easier to take off and clean, so chances are it will get done more often. If your not going to change the sock or clean the canister every 2 days then dont hook either one up.

Protein skimmers are probably the single most importaint piece of reefkeeping equipment on the market. Buy a good one. It takes pollutiants out of the water completly, unlike the canister which keeps water running through them.

If you can take your canister back to the store.
The canister was given to me with the tank. My uncle had it for a few years and has kept the fresh water tank extremely clean. But apparently everyone here is against the canister. So, I am now left with having to get a sump tank, a protein skimmer and what else? A return pump?
Sump, protein skimmer, overflow siphon unless your tank is drilled, one of those, 4 sock filters, a return pump rated for the same GPH as your overflow at however many feet. Freshwater tanks get along alot better with canister filters. Freshwater is more nutrient filled, so it bothers the animals less, and most people tha have freshwater dont use the high quality lights you use to grow corals.
I was looking into the sumps and I found Aqueon ProFlex Sump Refugium Setup model 1. It fits my stand and looks like its pretty easy to setup. I just have a question regarding which skimmer I should get? I sent a PM to Futuredoc and I am hoping for a response from him.
1 - 7 of 7 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.