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Having a problem deciding on a tank


ahud

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Hello,

 

This is my first post and basically I am your typical freshwater to saltwater convert.

 

I am trying to decide on my first tank and I can't decide between an all inclusive system(bio-cube) or using my 20long.

Can you guys give me some pros and cons to think about?

 

If I do the 20long I think I am going to have it drilled and add a sump. Some have told me to keep it simple and advised against the sump. What do you think?

 

 

Thanks,

Aaron

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For a first go at saltwater simple is sometimes better. You do not NEED a sump but the extra volume is nice. It also gives you a place for additional hardware and filtration if desired.

 

The all in one is nice (i have a bc29) but they do have their draw backs.. and to get started in oine will be more expensive than retrofitting your 20L

 

I personally would get a 2nd 20L and make a sump out of it. and stick with 20L as my main display as well.. I think those look pretty sweet once setup.

 

If I was to do it over again I would probably not do a BC29 to be totally honest.

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I would use the 20 long with no sump. Sumps arn't necessary. I have a 20 high and personally if I was starting all over, I would get a 20 long b/c there is more room. All in one tanks are good for beginners, but most people now a days mod the heck out of them. Plus there isn't much equipment to choose from. It's either the pc hood, the metal halide hood or the led hood. Where as with the 20 long, you have many more choices. I would say 20 long all the way, that way you can use the equipment you want to use. GL

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I am thinking I may outgrow a all inclusive setup if I like saltwater, but the plug and play aspect is tempting. I would not have to worry about trying to narrow down all my options on equipment :).

 

I was thinking the sump would make the tank a great deal more stable. I can also customize it a lot with a DSB and maybe some type of fuge.

 

Still is a sump it worth it?

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defiantly 20 long. my favorite size medium nano. I recommend some kind of T5HO SLR lighting.

 

You can do it without a sump but you will want a fuge of some kind, you can mod a HOB filter into a fuge but you will out grow that and wish you drilled it.

 

If you already have the tank, it wont cost much to drill it and use a 20high or 15g for a sump (so you have some extra room for equipment below) Do it now or do it in 6 months and wish you did it now. haha :D

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I have a few tanks extra tanks that are already drilled. The only downside I see is larger water changes.

 

Am I missing something since so many people say no to the sump?

 

Thanks for the great replies guys.

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fishdaddy0831
Yeah. Is something wrong with it?

 

 

I'm gonna guess some ppl would say that it isn't worth the risk to use it or at least a certain way to clean it. Just something to think about. I'm sure others will chime in.

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cheryl jordan

Do the 20 long, AIO are a pain sometimes. And modifications to the back chambers is a major pain. Kept is simple for now. If you become addicted you can always upgrade and you will. Two 20 longs would be a great start.

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I'm gonna guess some ppl would say that it isn't worth the risk to use it or at least a certain way to clean it. Just something to think about. I'm sure others will chime in.

 

What risk is there to using a 20L you used for FW? Unless you dosed with copper medications.

 

Otherwise, just a light vinegar and/or bleach bath (not too long or the bleach will eat at your silicone seams) will do the trick.

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IMO a fuge is a huge help (chaeto for nutrient removal, pod hideout, pH ballance, etc) also extra LR for more biofilter. You can have a tiny HOB filter fuge that won't do much, or a BIG HOB filter (like I have) but thats more of a PITA and doesn't look as nice, or is it as reliable as a drilled tank with a sump.

 

Sure you may want to do a 4 gallon w/c instead of a 3 gallon, but it will be MUCH easier to pull water out and add it back to your sump vs trying to pour it in the display and making a big mess.

 

Sump = much easier maintance, way nicer look, more room for growth, hiding ALL equipment, better bio filter, better pH ballance, and a place to put bad animals (fuge prison)

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I started out with a biocube 14. I loved the look.. i outgrew the tank in like 3 months.

It depends what you want for fish. And its difficult to make smaller tanks look natural in my opinion because everything (fish and corals) will outgrow smaller tanks. I upgraded to a red sea max 34 gallon. I really liked the curved glass on the front corners as apposed to the regular glued corners that could be a little more difficult to scrape the coraline algae off in my opinion. I think the redsea max would be better than the biocube. If you go for the redsea max all in one. you could enjoy the tank for a while but eventually you will probably upgrade the lights, skimmer and add more water flow in the near future. I will always have an all in one i think because I just love the look but there is nothing easier about them and all in one is just a gimick for now. Im thinking of going bigger though. And i plan to get the redsea max 250 and upgrade the lights and skimmer for that as well. If i dont go bigger and end up getting a second tank, i will definitely go for the 20" long custom build and add a fuge underneath as well. All the equipment is hidden in the fuge, you can setup a reverse light cycle, and you dont get chaeto flying around in your display. I guess it just depends on how much money you want to spend. It will be cheaper for sure doing a custom build. So basically IMO the only benefit from an all in one would be for the look of the setup.

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Hello,

 

This is my first post and basically I am your typical freshwater to saltwater convert.

 

I am trying to decide on my first tank and I can't decide between an all inclusive system(bio-cube) or using my 20long.

Can you guys give me some pros and cons to think about?

 

If I do the 20long I think I am going to have it drilled and add a sump. Some have told me to keep it simple and advised against the sump. What do you think?

 

 

Thanks,

Aaron

 

 

Take a look at some of these tanks:

http://www.marinedepot.com/ps_ViewItem.asp...mp;child=AZ1133

 

I would go with one of these if I was starting over. It all depends on how big/small of a tank you want. I have an AIO - biocube 29 and I like the curved glass in the front and all the filtration and other stuff is hidden away in the back (easy to mod), but You could do the same with one of the above mentioned tanks with a HOB filter converted to a mini fuge, drill it and have a fuge, or just a good HOB skimmer. Then the only high ticketed item (other than livestock) would be the lighting and you shouldn't skimp on that. Good luck.

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Thanks for all the great advice!

 

I am going to use the 20long after researching in reading the replies here. I think I am also going to use a sump. I really like how I would be able to house my heater and a fuge in it.

 

Just for the sake of making sure I cover all angles are there any other tank sizes that are recommended? I want to stay small, but would something like a 30 breeder be better(36x18x12) than the 20long?

 

If I do a wider tank will my lighting cost go up significantly?

 

Thank you guys so much and I promise I am reading!

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I would go 30 gallons, because you'll have more options for fish and coral. If you're going MH or even T5HO lighting it wouldn't necessarily have to change. You could get away with a 24" fixture T5HO or a MH fixture if you hang it. If you're handy here is a decent DIY hanger link:

http://www.reefkeeping.com/issues/2009-04/diy/index.php

 

You didn't like the 25 gallon frame-less rimless cube at marinedepot.com. They also have bow fronts and rectangles of various sizes. If I had to do it all over again that's what I would go with.

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Hanging will not be an option. I am worried I will not be satisfied with the footprint of the 20Long so I would like to do the 30gal.

 

I know lighting will be expensive, but it gets more expensive as you go up in tank size right?

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I know lighting will be expensive, but it gets more expensive as you go up in tank size right?

 

Yes. Why can't you hang (don't like the look?)?? You could make a bracket that fastens to your tank stand in the back and then goes up the back of the tank and overhangs above the tank (like in the link). All of it would be hidden accept the top part. It would be less expensive than buying a larger light fixture. I have a 24" T5HO and if I ever upgrade that's what I would do because the light spread is pretty good. Besides I don't usually have corals near the edges anyway, so no need for light there.

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I have actually decided on a 40 breeder :)

 

Thanks all for your help!

 

Thanks Marine for all of the suggestions!

 

 

I think the 40 gallon breeder is the perfect starter size and wished I had gone that route. You'll get addicted to reefing sooner or later and then you'll be wanting to go bigger yet. :D

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I am already addicted to reading about it!

 

Everything is so much more complex than freshwater and I am loving it. I am probably just touching the tip of the ice berg, but the shrimp goby's behavior with the pistol shrimp exactly the type of thing that makes me love keeping fish.

 

Compatibility issues are also very complex, I still can't decide if its fine to keep the small variety of pistol shrimp(candy cane?) with skunk shrimp. Some say it works, some say their skunk was shot to death lol.

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