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The Chedder Pimp'ers 29 Gallon tank...

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Hey Folks...


I figured I'll start a mini journal here on Nano-Reef... I'm really liking this forum... Tons of people in the same boat with great idea's and suggestions.


Anywho...let me first start off with the basics:


Name: Carlos

Age: 22

Occup: College Student, Employee, Fiance (<-hardest job by far...)

Location: Orlando, FL...





7 x Hermit Crabs

9 x Snails

1 x FireFish

24lbs. Live Rock





Hydor Powerhead - #1

Current SLR T5HO 30''inch Fixture (1 - 10K, 1 - 460nm)




Now for the storyline:

Sept of 2008, I was giving a tank by my great Fiance for my birthday. It was a FreshWater complete kit...with the top, heater, hang on filter, etc...


I decided I couldn't pass up Salt Water, since I love the fish and color... Since then the battle has been on.


I've been reading everyday on random forums about aquarium/reef management... After awhile, I figured it was time to start up my tank.


At first, I had decided to go Fresh Water...so I went and got a ton of ###### from Walmart - Blue rocks and so on...


1 week later I figured why go Fresh Water...when I can empty my checking account with a Salt Water tank!!! I went to petco and brought a ton of ###### - Mixing Salt, test kits, hydrometer, crush coral, etc...


So here I stand mid Oct. with blue rocks in my tank. I figured I'll be lazy and leave the blue rock in my tank...and simply lay the crushed coral on top.












Decided to move the sand around and try to cover the blue rocks that were soaking through...turns out the cheap "MADE IN CHINA" rocks let off some serious paint...I had Live Rock in the tank at that time and it was cycling...so I lost about 2-3 weeks worth of time.














Okay...so now I have no crushed coral or water in the tank... I then decided to paint the back glass since the tank was empty.












Once again...everything is moving fine. Decided to look and what do I see...A CRACK


Time to buy a new tank.


I went and got another tank and brought SAND this time...












I then realized that the sand I got wasn't aragonite sand...so I got pissed and start the tank all over again...for the 3rd or 4th time...I didn't feel like waiting so I got the Live Sand(or so they claim)












So finally after waiting about a week...my water was good...I went and go 2 Damsels...(I was still dumb about Salt Water tanks)










So here I am in November with 12lbs of Live Rock and 2 damsels...I sold them to a LFS and brought more Live Rock and a Flame Angel.



Since then(I don't have any new pics since November) I have had a few things happen:


My Flame Angel was perfect...until I brought alittle more Live Rock, Blue Watchman Goby and Skunk Clown.


I didn't realize putting Live Rock...even though I thought it was cured into the tank will #### things up...it did.


My Flame Angel died and my other fish got sick. I returned them, waited awhile until my water was back to normal and got a Clown fish and a Yellow Wrasse.


Turns out my Yellow Wrasse was crazy and really injured my clown fish. He would swim by him and push him into the rocks and just throw him around like his little b1tch. The clown was less than an inch long...he was a baby and died. I returned the Yellow Wrasse.


I then brought a Fire Fish and Chromis. Turns out my Chromis didn't like the Fire Fish and ate his mini antenna. I returned my Chromis.


I then brought a Six Line Wrasse...



So far they the Six Line Wrasse and Fire Fish are doing great. I feed them well and they love the tank. I haven't taken any pics, but will snap some today for lunch.



Thanks for reading.


Also...I have about 6 hermit crabs and like 15 snails... Is that too much for a CUC?

Edited by pimp4cheddar

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wow :o .....youve had a hell of a time so far...:D....






research your fish before you buy them!!!!


thats the best advice i can give you...the firefish and the sixline shuld b fine together...but you need to research what fish are compatible with them and your tank size.


happy reefin. :D



edit: hermits are great for algae consumption, but are bulldozers to anything not glued down. theyre also killers of snails (to steal the shells). and what type of snails are they? you should make a livestock list on your original post. helps to keep track.

Edited by pismo_reefer

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Wow you had some bad luck in the beginning....researching will help you out the most and youre wallet will still be somewhat full lol patience is key. 6 hermits is ok but i would take out about 7-8 of those snails. They will run out of food and starve to death. Lets see some pics.

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I'm totally reading up on fish before buying them...and I have been. I couldn't figure out why my Chormis was tearing my firefish up...


Anywho, as promised...new pics:






Left Side:




Ride Side:




My handicap FireFish (he's missing half his antenna):






Also, at night...I have a great view of the tank from my sofas. As you can see, the bullsh1t light that came with the tank does a decent job of lighting it up.







I'm looking to replace the light I currently have. Power Compact vs. T5 is always the arguement...however I'm not too sure. I want my light output to look like these:



Here are two examples of tanks I like...hopefully they don't get mad that I stole their pics...


Light specs: X2 Arcadia luminaires. Will only be using one to begin with (X2 54W T5 and X2 Actinic, one blue and one purple).






Light specs: (didn't state the company) 6 x 54 watt T5. 3 10000k bulbs and 3 actinic Bulbs






I'm not too concerned with corals...I'm mostly focused on the way the tank looks. I want a nice deep/crisp blue in the tank...like the pics I posted above...


Any advice what the cheapest way would be?

Edited by pimp4cheddar

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nice rockscape. i suggest the t5 route with four 24W bulbs, attached with individual reflectors. 2 actinic (20,000K) and 2 white (10,000K) is the usual combo. to achieve the blue look, turn on only actinic. hth

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I'm not too concerned with corals...I'm mostly focused on the way the tank looks.


WHAT?!?!?!?! :o Because corals don't enhance the way the tank looks? I'm confused, but I get what you mean ;) . If you decide to get into corals, read up like crazy until you have nothing left to do but get some softies and give it a shot.


I want a nice deep/crisp blue in the tank...like the pics I posted above...

Any advice what the cheapest way would be?



Check out aquatraders.com I've heard decent things about them and their prices are unbeatable. Might wanna snoop around and try to find some feedback but from my end it's been generally positive.

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Also...I was thinking...


I don't really like the look of the hang on filter...can I do without it?


I currently have a Carbon Filter and a phosphate filter in the hang on unit.



If I remove it...can I just add power heads to (circulate and add oxygen to the water) and call it a day?


WHAT?!?!?!?! :o Because corals don't enhance the way the tank looks? I'm confused, but I get what you mean ;) . If you decide to get into corals, read up like crazy until you have nothing left to do but get some softies and give it a shot.


Reason I say...i'm not interest in corals...is because I'll be fine with softies and zoos...


I'm not into corals as much as others are. I'll take what ever is on sale and cheap!!!


I'm mostly concerned with the way the tank looks and makes my livingroom look.



Thanks for the website "bredler", their prices are SUPER CHEAP...my type of website....




Also note: I've added the light specs of the two tanks that I showed a few posts ago...

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beware i feel a flame brewing! So far you have told everyone you are LAZY and Didn't read much about the hobby before jumping in.


I'm not being mean but there are alot of people here that have flame throwers!

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I was lazy in leaving the blue rocks...as I only brought 2 bags of sand...I figured I'll keep the rock in the tank and cover it with sand (so that I don't throw away money on the rocks)...bad move on my part.


Believe me...I'm far from lazy. I'm sitting at work right now, reading up on tanks that people have kept. Everything from reefcentral, fishforums.net, fishforums.com, nano-reef, local forums, etc...


Once I received my tank I took about a month and just read all night long. The only thing I have very little knowledge on is "lighting". I'm no where next to any of you folks when it comes to experience...and I'll be the first to say that. If they feel like flaming...feel free.




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sweet rock work dud. I have a 29 gallon as well and there a fun tank. Check it out on my link below. Let me know what you think

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Your tank is looking nice! Came along way from post 1. I'm looking into t-5's. I have 175w MH right now. I just don't like the way any of the bulbs look. I think T-5s are what you're looking for! Checkout the lighting forum if you haven't. There's a Sticky about T-5s with pics of different bulb combos. I'm looking to get a fixture from fishneedit.com. People that have bought like it so far. $90 for a 24" 4x24w fixture ain't bad.

But ya,Check out that sticky if you haven't! If you do decide to get serious into corals T-5s can support just about any zoas,mushrooms,softies and lps from what I've gathered. G/L!

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Good response, Chedder Pimp. Way to hang in there. You won't be sorry once things are going well. SW tanks are super awesome. -small

Edited by small alien

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Trust me i'm the last person to flame anyone and i was a complete noob when i started. I started mine without reading a single thing. I was retarded then and now that i have been on this site it has helped alot. It was just a warning. There are people here that are not to helpful and like to set fire to the noobs. keep up the good work, i would love to see the end product.

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Well...I'm looking at two different light fixtures...



1) Light 1



2) Light 2




To be honest...I just ordered Light #1...


I got it for $45.00 and it arrives tomorrow. The owner of the store told me I could bring it back and return it if I'm not impressed...



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Well after two days of not seeing my Six Line Wrasse...I finally found him...


A F@@KING hermit crab was clawing away on him...like a fat chick claws away at the Golden Coral...


I'm so pissed off right now. I flushed the wrasse and flushed the damn hermit crab for eating him!!!


My FireFish seems to be enjoying his stay...it's been about 3 weeks since I've had him...he's loving life in the tank. Can't seem to figure out why the wrasse didn't make it...

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Holy chit! the gravel pix cracked me up...looks like u drowned a smurf in there

No crushed coral! the first sand u put in would have been fine, it would have become live in time..


you live and learn in this hobby! the tank looks great :D hopefully you can find a light that you like

read up at the lighting forum..the T5HO thread is there



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I love your rock 'scaping. Those are some great tunnels you have going there. Looking forward to seeing things evolve.


I have a 29 too (linked below) they are awesome tanks. There's a lot of potential there. Good job.

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Hey Folks,


Long update on the way...and of course with pictures!!!!!!


So...I went and ordered some stuff.


At Dr Fosters & Smith's (A.K.A. - The Wal-Mart for Pets), I ordered a powerhead, seaclone skimmer, and current SLR T5 fixture.


Sure enought...I received everything on time and in great condition.










I was currently using the NORMAL Flourensent light fixture that comes with a standard tank...I did a quick compare....







As you can see...the Current SLR T5's claim to have individual reflectors (SLR - Single Light Reflectors)...and they do...completely around each bulb.






Here is the regular lighting fixture on:






Now here is the T5:





Both of them side by side:






To be honest...you can't tell the difference from the pictures at all...it's so unreal. The light output by these two little bulbs is CRAZY...I'm so happy I purchased these and not any other unit. The lighting unit was about $75.00...simply because it doesn't include any of the PERKS the other light fixtures include (LED's, Timers, Fans, etc...) This unit doesn't get hot at all...there's no heat that comes off those bulbs. It's a great buy for anyone that want the look without having to fork over some dinero $$$.





FTS (PLEASE NOTE: The tank now has a powerhead and no longer has the HOB filter):











As of yesterday and how the tank stands:








Thanks for looking.



1 questions: Is the powerhead facing the right direction? It's on the SIDE GLASS facing the TOP of the FRONT GLASS...should I buy another powerhead? or is that enought?





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Well...Turns out the skimmer was extremely ugly...and drove me crazy. It took up half my back glass with the powerhead, suction cups, foam tube, etc...


I'm actually returning it today...


Would I be able to run my tank with just a powerhead and NO FILTER/SKIMMER?

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So I finally took back the skimmer...and I'm looking to buy some clown gobies...maybe 2.


Also...I'm looking for a nice hangon skimmer that doens't place too much stuff in my tank. Something like an octopus skimmer...that has the powerhead outside the tank.


Any suggests on the HOB skimmer or my powerhead?




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I don't know if there is a nice HOB skimmer that wouldnt take up too much space. Maybe if you put a background on the tank then having a skimmer wouldnt bother you as much because you wouldn't be able to see it.


I don't think you need a filter/protein skimmer necessarily, (alhtough they help). The main filtration is supposed to be the live rock, and water changes should also help.


Keep in mind though that I have absolutely no experience and everything I'm saying is based off reading this forum for the last ~10 months.

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