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Fluval Chi Nano Reef?


Steventomas

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Steventomas

First off thank you for reading my post and i'd like to apologize in advance for any stupid questions i'm going to ask.

 

 

So here is my situation:

 

I have been keeping freshwater aquariums for a few years now and have done pretty well with them. Recently i had to move and sold off my freshwater things except for a few items. Now that i am in a permanent location i would like to venture into saltwater. Because i am new to sw i dont want to spend $1000 and have it blow up in my face. So i have been researching to get ideas for what i need to know.

 

I want to start off without corals to simplify things, if possible.

 

I have two tanks that i am interested in doing salt water, the first and most preferred is my 5g Fluval Chi, i understand that i will have to modify the lighting and get a different mechanical filter. I have a 50w heater for it.

 

The other tank i have is a 20g tall tank with a standard hood with an 18" Marineland Natural Daylight (F15T8/18"). It has a 20 gallon mechanical filter and a 150w heater that i have set to keep the tank at about 76 degrees.

 

What would be less of an investment for me as my first tank? Eventually after i have successfully kept a sw tank i would like to do both

 

From my research so far here are the things i would need to purchase in no specific order:

 

Aprox. 1.25 pounds of live rock per gallon

Aprox. 2 pounds of live sand per gallon

Marina Slim Mechanical Filter rated for 20gallons

Instant Ocean Salt Mix

Hydrometer

Alot of distilled water

A 96gph Powerhead

Master Reef test kit

 

I know i am probably missing a few things that i had on my mental list, but please feel free to let me know on other things that i will be needing.

 

As far as livestock i would like to have a ocelllaris clown after the tank is cycled and such.

 

 

thanks for taking the time to read this and please let me know what you guys think.

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Grumblecakes

the 20 would be your best bet imo, but you would need better lighting for some corals, decent t5 lighting can be had for fairly cheap. your setup cost is going to be similar with both tanks (lighting excluded).

 

2lbs per gallon of sand seems kinda high and you could get away with alot less. i would NOT waste your money on live sand either, maybe a pound or two to get going but the cost of live sand vs regular sand is substantial and the money would be better spent elsewhere imo. If you go with the 5g i would ditch the hydrometer in favor of a refractometer as you will be tanking out a good portion of water everytime you check with the hydro. Reef master kit isnt wholly necessary, you will want ammonia, nitrite and nitrate. Also you can buy ro/di water much cheaper than distilled, or better yet get a filter.

 

if you plan on keeping a clown then i would highly recommend the 20 as they do need some space to swim.

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Steventomas
the 20 would be your best bet imo, but you would need better lighting for some corals, decent t5 lighting can be had for fairly cheap. your setup cost is going to be similar with both tanks (lighting excluded).

 

2lbs per gallon of sand seems kinda high and you could get away with alot less. i would NOT waste your money on live sand either, maybe a pound or two to get going but the cost of live sand vs regular sand is substantial and the money would be better spent elsewhere imo. If you go with the 5g i would ditch the hydrometer in favor of a refractometer as you will be tanking out a good portion of water everytime you check with the hydro. Reef master kit isnt wholly necessary, you will want ammonia, nitrite and nitrate. Also you can buy ro/di water much cheaper than distilled, or better yet get a filter.

 

if you plan on keeping a clown then i would highly recommend the 20 as they do need some space to swim.

 

 

After this i am thinking on going with the 20g but still not completely sure. On the sand, i should but like 2-3 pounds of live sand and then fill the rest in with plain old aragonite from the pet store? And do i necessarily have to go with one and a quarter pounds of rock per gallon? If i did the 20g i would be happy with doing like 10pounds of rock or so and do a simplistic aquascape in the center of the tank, maximizing the rest of the space of the tank for swimming.

 

I really appreciate your help with this, its my first sw and im pretty excited to do it, i've always wanted to do one and now i think im ready.

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Grumblecakes

yea argonite will work just fine, its what im going to do when i move in a few weeks. im not positive but i think you could do less lr per gallon if you have a light bio load, the density of the rock will matter though, large light pieces will be better than small dense ones if that makes sense.

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go with the 20 that whole not wanting coral phase will last maybe 2 months and youll want the space by then. it also gives you more room if something were to go bad like a fish died and you were at work. its 4 times more concentrated in the fluval chi than the 20.

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Steventomas
yea argonite will work just fine, its what im going to do when i move in a few weeks. im not positive but i think you could do less lr per gallon if you have a light bio load, the density of the rock will matter though, large light pieces will be better than small dense ones if that makes sense.

 

 

Thanks for your advice. We have two fish stores other than petsmart here in town, i will probably get out tuesday to check out what we have around here. Hopefully i can find some decent, cured, live rock around here as id hate to have to pay to ship rocks from some online store. My current bioload is only going to be the clown, maybe 2, unless i find another fish i would like to add. But I plan on keeping it simple for now. So 10lb of rock im hoping is enough for 2-3 small fish. Im sure that eventually i will want to do a few coral so then i will add more rock to give the coral a place and increase the biological filter.

 

As for mechanical filtration i am thinking of adding another 20gallon HOB filter in addition to the current 20gallon HOB filter, this way there will be a total filtration capacity of 40gallons in addition to the biological filtration of the live rock and sand.

 

 

Let me know what you think,

 

And thank you countless times for your advice.

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If you are making a reef, nano-tanks are one of the cheapest parts. Figure out what tank you want, not what tank you happen to have lying around. You'll be much happier in the long run.

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