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Detritus

Hello! And yet another "help me pick a tank" thread....

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Detritus   

Hello, Nano-Reefer's! I am looking to set up a nano sized reef aquarium, and after lurking for a while here I decided to join this forum. This first post is really more or less to say hello to everyone, introduce myself, and maybe get a few posts up so I can do some shopping in the classified section. Unless I'm missing it, I didn't see a specific section for new members to post just to say hello, so....... Hello!! If there's a better spot to be posting any of this, please let me know. 

 

A quick little bit about me, I have been keeping aquariums off and on for at least 35 years now, including about 6 years ago when I had a "real" job I ran a 125 gallon, mostly softies, nothing special tank. It had two 250 watt metal halides over it, and a 55 gallon tank converted into a sump under it. I no longer make anywhere near what I was making back then, and so if I was to try another reef tank now, it has to be a fairly small one for financial reasons. Because I have kind of drifted in and out of the hobby, I freely consider myself a total noob at reefing, and you guys should too! I am also interested in freshwater fish and reptiles, dogs and cats, and other animals. I have a BS in Biology and a Chemistry minor, but I have been unable to find a decent lab job in my area, so most recently I was a pharmacy technician for a couple years (worst job ever, lol!), and I am now a store manager for a local company that is like a country farm and garden/equine/pet store all rolled into one. Because of my background with fish and reptiles in particular, I over see our humble pet department a fair amount. We have roughly 50 tanks, all freshwater, though I would like to bring saltwater tanks back to our store as soon as we clean up our freshwater tanks ;-) We also have a small reptile section, a few birds, hamsters, bunnies, guinea pigs, etc. 

 

In looking to start a reef tank again, my plan is to proceed extremely slowly with everything, and really do some research and ask questions before buying anything. I'd like to kind of do things once and do it right, for a change. I believe the first consideration has to be the tank itself, and if any of you would like to offer me some suggestions, I would appreciate it. I am kind of a fish tank hoarder, I pick them up everywhere I can, so I have a bunch of tanks in storage I could set up ranging in size from 5 to 125 gallons. But they are, with a couple exceptions, all old, scratched, rimmed, tanks, and I think I want one of the newer rimless, low iron tanks. Size-wise, I think I am leaning towards 10 gallons for cost, maybe 20 gallons if I can swing it. The All In One style tanks are undeniably appealing, I've read a lot of good things about the Innovative Marine Fusion Nano series of tanks, and I'm leaning towards one of their 10's or 20's. I have already seen a lot of nice builds using these tanks, and if I can come even close to what other members have done I'd be thrilled. But, I'm skeptical..... I have read that right off the bat you will need to spend, what, 50 bucks or so on a media basket, and maybe 30 dollars on a new return pump. So realistically you have to add +/- $80.00 to the cost of the tank, and that's another 80% in the case of the $100.00 ten gallon IM nano. And, when I look at user reviews for these accessories they are not all always glowing. Am I missing something? I do know there is a dedicated club for the IM Fusion tanks here at NR.com, but clearly if I ask there I'm going to get, "Oh sure, these are the greatest tanks in the world......". I was hoping for a more unbiased opinion. 

 

Are there other AIO's that I should be looking at? And a more general AIO question, are people *really* successful keeping any and all equipment in the tank? I mean, once I have to hang even one piece of equipment outside the tank, then why not get a "regular" tank, right? I believe the AquaMax tanks looked good for the money.

 

Oh, and just because someone will correctly ask me what I'm try to keep, I'm going to say I don't know just yet, lol! But, I want the focus of this tank to be more on the corals and inverts for sure. I am not the most knowledgeable about the different species of corrals yet, but I can tell you guys from experience that I don't want a tank full of shrooms again. I'd like to try some things that are a little above that, maybe some motipora or acropora, but certainly I'd like to have some nice softies too. I am probably not advanced enough to say this will be any kind of SPS tank, though I'd like to leave myself room to try some of the hardier species down the road as I advance in the hobby. I am hoping to not skimp on lighting, I have many questions there too, but I am leaning towards an Aqua Illumination Prime HD. I want to buy the tank brand new so it's scratch free, but I'm hoping to get the lighting fixture used.

 

So there you have it, lol! Sorry that was such a long post, but if you have any help or suggestions for picking a tank, I'd love to hear them. Thank you in advance for your help!

 

-Detritus

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Flexin   

Welcome and have fun.  I decided on a Coarlife 32 gal biocube led.  That sounded bigger than what you wanted and I understand the budget.  I kept it stock.  You can always put more in it depending on what you want to do.  However, having a 32 biocube may not be out of budget for you since the AI Primes are $225.  By the time you add up everything, you can get one of these AIO systems.  JBJ also makes them at a good price.  I've been able to keep SPS and LPS no problem with the stock LED on the biocube.  Take a glance at the link below.  I went with a chemical skimmer, Purigen, and skipped mechanical.  I purchased the coarlife skimmer and it never really did a good job IMO.  Purigen was too easy.  Since I'm new to the hobby, as you continue your journey it will be interesting to hear what's changed?  Likes and dislikes as you go. 

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Minmay   

Hi! Welcome to NR. I have the Fluval 13.5, if you're going to be doing just LPS and softies then this tank is fine. Its AIO tank. Its a cool little tank. I did purchase another circulation pump and i DIY a media basket with eggcrates. I also did upgrade the light to Al Prime HD but the stock lighting is pretty good for LPS and softies. I had baby zoa pop out like 3w after having it with just the stock lighting. So, if u need something budget friendly this is a cool little tank and you can always upgrade as time/money permits

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Lula_Mae   

:welcome: to Nano-Reef!  Sounds like you've done a lot of considering and research already!  I believe some members have gone with the InTank filter floss holder instead of media basket, which is more budget friendly, and some make their own out of eggcrate, which is always an option.  The IM10, 14 peninsula, 20 peninsula, and 20 fusion are all tanks I'd recommend you look into, but the Fluval Evo 13.5 may also be something you want to look at.  It comes with stock lighting that is good enough for LPS and you can definitely upgrade it later.  I believe dimensions are similar to the 14 peninsula from IM.  There's quite a few builds with this tank on here, and the tank with everything it comes with will run you about $150 as it's frequently on sale, which would leave more budget for getting additional circulation pumps and of course, coral!  My inclination would be to recommend a slightly larger tank than a 10 gallon just due to your proclivity for collecting fish, as a 10 gallon only holds two or maybe 3 small fish without becoming extremely heavy on the bioload.  The Biocube series are another you may want to look at if you're mostly looking for an AIO to get started, but not everyone likes the shape.  And of course, if you decide not to go with an AIO, there is always the dollar a gallon sales at Petco!  Some other non-AIO options you may look at are the Mr. Aqua/Aquamaxx tanks or the Nuvo Black series.  And remember, with equipment, you can always start less expensively and upgrade later.

 

The AI Prime series is definitely a good choice and will let you keep anything you want in this size tank.  @gena has it over her 10 Fusion (formerly 20 drop-off) if you want to see a gorgeous tank (not sure if hers is HD or not).

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Clown79   

Welcome

 

I have a 10g IM. I really like their tanks.

I'm waiting on my 25g lagoon to arrive.

 

You don't have to upgrade the pump right away, many don't. It's something that some choose to do, to not use a powerhead in the tank.

I upgraded my pump because my 10g was used and the stock pump wasn't working well. 

You can make media baskets with eggcrate or use the filter socks they now come with until you get a media basket.

 

I'd say go with the 20g. It gives you more room and you're less limited.

 

All the Aio tanks need some modification.

 

The Evo is another nice tank but the filter media isn't great, so a media basket needs to be made for it. Many upgrade the pump or add a powerhead as well.

 

The biocube is the same. You need to get a media basket and use custom media.

The lighting is ok on the tank but many have temp issues due to the hood.

 

You can also do a rimmed with an hob filter, use custom filter media, add a powerhead.

 

Or do a standard rimless and do a sump with it.

A 12g long rimless is a really nice tank.

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Detritus   

Hi guys! Thank you for all the great replies! I'm sorry I didn't respond sooner, but I didn't get a notification even though I believe I have that box checked. Certainly, there's more than one great option for a tank here. What I do know for sure is I'd like to try one of the newer tanks with the low iron glass. I have plenty of regular, rimmed tanks, and I'm looking for something more modern with this purchase. I also like the dimensions on some of these tanks. As far as size, sure, I'd prefer the largest tank I can afford, and it might well be a 20 or 30. But, part of the attraction to the 10 gallon is I believe I can go without a skimmer, counting on high quality carbon and water changes to pull out organics. I would think that at 20 and certainly 30 gallons a skimmer is going to be much more of a necessity. I decent skimmer is going to be $150 or so, and I was hoping try things without one and see how it goes. And, the IM Nuvo Fusion Nano 10 in particular would sit perfectly on my nightstand too, though the IM Nano 20 could live on a storage thing we have in the hallway, until I could build a nicer stand. 

 

And as far as the cost, I don't mean to sound clueless to the fact that this is an expensive hobby, but I am married, and I'd like to keep it that way ;-) I also know that many people will modify any or all of these systems to better suit their needs, and that's fine. I'm a handy guy, and I like the DIY aspect of fishkeeping.  I'm really trying to take my time and get what I want/need the first time around. I'd like to avoid buying an AIO with a light that's *alright*, only to have to upgrade it in 3,6, 12 months. That seems like extra money in the long run. Of course, it would be tempting to get started sooner, and I could always use the light on another tank or a fuge or something. .... So many decisions! I also think if I'm patient I can find deals on gently used equipment, I have no problems doing that. 

 

I did see and look at the Coralife Biocube 16 and possibly another size up, maybe it was the 32 gallon. I think I can actually get the Biocubes through work, potentially at a decent discount. But the rimless, hoodless look of other systems is appealing to me. I have also looked very closely at the Fluvals too. I'm a little nervous that the semi see through black over the filter section may look cheap in person. But it did seem to get good reviews....

 

I did look at the AquaMax tanks, and the IM Nuvo Black line for regular tanks, certainly viable options. With sizes like 10-30 gallons, how are most people setting these tanks up? A hang on rim overflow to a sump, or drilling the tanks and then to a sump, or by using Hang-On-Back filters and equipment? 

 

Thanks again for the help! 

 

-Detritus

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I second the IM 10 and 20. They are great tanks and are very versatile. In my 10 I have a skimmer, a refugium, and will be adding a auto top off soon. Im having so much fun with this tank!

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Lula_Mae   
4 hours ago, Detritus said:

Hi guys! Thank you for all the great replies! I'm sorry I didn't respond sooner, but I didn't get a notification even though I believe I have that box checked. Certainly, there's more than one great option for a tank here. What I do know for sure is I'd like to try one of the newer tanks with the low iron glass. I have plenty of regular, rimmed tanks, and I'm looking for something more modern with this purchase. I also like the dimensions on some of these tanks. As far as size, sure, I'd prefer the largest tank I can afford, and it might well be a 20 or 30. But, part of the attraction to the 10 gallon is I believe I can go without a skimmer, counting on high quality carbon and water changes to pull out organics. I would think that at 20 and certainly 30 gallons a skimmer is going to be much more of a necessity. I decent skimmer is going to be $150 or so, and I was hoping try things without one and see how it goes. And, the IM Nuvo Fusion Nano 10 in particular would sit perfectly on my nightstand too, though the IM Nano 20 could live on a storage thing we have in the hallway, until I could build a nicer stand. 

 

And as far as the cost, I don't mean to sound clueless to the fact that this is an expensive hobby, but I am married, and I'd like to keep it that way ;-) I also know that many people will modify any or all of these systems to better suit their needs, and that's fine. I'm a handy guy, and I like the DIY aspect of fishkeeping.  I'm really trying to take my time and get what I want/need the first time around. I'd like to avoid buying an AIO with a light that's *alright*, only to have to upgrade it in 3,6, 12 months. That seems like extra money in the long run. Of course, it would be tempting to get started sooner, and I could always use the light on another tank or a fuge or something. .... So many decisions! I also think if I'm patient I can find deals on gently used equipment, I have no problems doing that. 

 

I did see and look at the Coralife Biocube 16 and possibly another size up, maybe it was the 32 gallon. I think I can actually get the Biocubes through work, potentially at a decent discount. But the rimless, hoodless look of other systems is appealing to me. I have also looked very closely at the Fluvals too. I'm a little nervous that the semi see through black over the filter section may look cheap in person. But it did seem to get good reviews....

 

I did look at the AquaMax tanks, and the IM Nuvo Black line for regular tanks, certainly viable options. With sizes like 10-30 gallons, how are most people setting these tanks up? A hang on rim overflow to a sump, or drilling the tanks and then to a sump, or by using Hang-On-Back filters and equipment? 

 

Thanks again for the help! 

 

-Detritus

You can get away without a skimmer for up to 30-40 gallons at least, especially if you don't do a lot of SPS or go crazy on the bioload.

 

59 minutes ago, saltaquareef said:

This is a "hobby". If you don't have the will, money, time, patience, ect. you're fighting an up hill battle. If you can't "commit" than you will lose in the long run. It's your decision and if money is tight, than I would pass at this time and read up on as much information as you can. So when you are truly ready, you will be prepared. I'm just trying to be real. If you take the low road, you will be disappointed and so will your corals and fish. All the best in no matter what you decide. 

One person's version of "budget" will be wildly different from another's.  After all, he's talking about an AI Prime, a light which costs significantly more than my first setup! :lol: Granted, it was a gallon, but still lol.  Being on a budget does not preclude someone from partaking in this amazing hobby, it just means they may have to scale down or go a lot slower than others.  Even today I have to keep things on a budget, but I can still afford to get new corals and such every month or two.  Everyone's situation is different, and one person may be happy with a tank that has nothing but caulerpa, xenia and clownfish, while another may not be satisfied till they've stuffed their tank with SPS.  It's all relative to the person. :)

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Clown79   

You don't need a skimmer on even a 30g. Many run their tanks without one and with no issue. 

The key is good, proper, routine mainten, low bioload.

 

The fluval is nicer in person than it appears. The lighting is fine but not very programmable.

 

The biocubes are nice but personally I don't like the curved glass or the hood. The lighting is fine for softies and lps.

 

The downside to a 10g is the limiting space and limitation on livestock. 

 

This was the rimless I was mentioning 

https://www.marinedepot.com/AquaMaxx_Long_Low_Iron_Rimless_Aquarium_12_Gallon_Nano_Cube_Aquariums_Tanks_10_19_Gallons-AquaMaxx-UJ69455-FIAQNCNTTN-vi.html

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Flexin   

That 12G is a very cool tank!  To your point Clown, I really liked the look of the biocube, so I think it's something that can be polarizing in appearance.  But I've found I don't care for open tanks with lights and wires all over.  Now some keep a nice setup and make it look clean and neat.  Depends on the room and your preference.  That 12G you pointed out and those shapes, I really like.  Can't believe I have not even started the 65, and I'm looking at another tank!  

 

 

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Detritus   
17 hours ago, Lula_Mae said:

One person's version of "budget" will be wildly different from another's.  After all, he's talking about an AI Prime, a light which costs significantly more than my first setup! :lol: Granted, it was a gallon, but still lol.  Being on a budget does not preclude someone from partaking in this amazing hobby, it just means they may have to scale down or go a lot slower than others.  Even today I have to keep things on a budget, but I can still afford to get new corals and such every month or two.  Everyone's situation is different, and one person may be happy with a tank that has nothing but caulerpa, xenia and clownfish, while another may not be satisfied till they've stuffed their tank with SPS.  It's all relative to the person. :)

Hi, Lula_Mae! This was a great reply, well said, and I thank you! To be clear, I am far from a total noob, I know very well this is an expensive hobby, and I'm preparing for that. After all, I'm here talking about, what I would call, pretty darn expensive fish tanks, and a light that is as much as a decent car payment, plus everything else. I just said I wanted to take my time, research, ask, and then try to buy the best possible gear for my tank and situation. I'm hoping to do the "buy it once, and buy it right" kind of thing. What I'm trying to avoid is getting, for example, a cheapy kit "just to get going", and then having to up grade nearly everything, which in the long run is far more expensive than slowly acquiring quality equipment. I did ask about going without a skimmer, at least at first, but that's because I would use that money to get a good ATO, which seems far more vital to these small systems, and I thought a skimmer would be easier to add later if needed. That, and again, the reviews for these small skimmers that fit the AIO tanks seems mixed to me, some swear they work great, others say they are garbage.

 

Additionally, though nothing is set in stone (see bellow), the decision to start a smaller tank is partly financial, but it's also a case of where the heck am I going to put a 30 gallon or larger tank in my house? I'm not saying I can't do it, but that requires real thought, and the construction of a nice stand (I am an amateur woodworker too). And now I'm talking about preparing, storing, and handling a fair amount of saltwater each week or so, and I'm not sure I want that. I still have a 55 gallon Brute garbage can for mixing saltwater in a storage unit, but I'm not sure I want to get into all that right now. Part of the appeal of a smaller tank for me is that I can have something like a food grade 5 gallon bucket as my mixing container, and I can swap out a few gallons of saltwater at each change really easily. I think that the ease of doing water changes, combined with their relative importance on these small systems, and I'm going to be more likely to strictly maintain my schedule. Yes, I know, I have to strictly maintain my schedule ;-)

 

I also want to point out that I'm really just chatting and throwing out ideas - largely as a way to get my posts up so I can avail myself of the great deals to be found in the NR.com's buy/sell section ;-) I'm also a long time member of reefcentral, so I can be looking there too. Nothing I say here is set in stone, except that I want a reef tank again, and I want to take my time, research, and really do this one right from all considerations, including ease of maintenance, budget, and over all aesthetics of the aquarium. Indeed, I'm a fairly handy guy, and like the DIY stuff, but in this case I'm really looking to buy most everything just so it looks as clean and professional as possible, not cobbled together on a shoe string budget, and I mean ABSOLUTELY NO offense to those who have do just that. But that's the basics of the tank I'm really beginning to imagine.

 

Sorry if I was ranting or being negative!! I"m not trying to be that kind of NR.com member ;-)

 

On a lighter note, and again just throwing around ideas, I have a 65 gallon reef ready I bought at least 15 or more years ago, and then I lucked out and got a good deal on the 125 gallon I eventually set up (mentioned previously in my first post). The 65 is basically brand spanking new, never seen water, just storage dust. I also have a Reef Octopus 8" skimmer and a 55 gallon glass tank I converted into something of a Melev's Reef Model F sump. I've even got a stand for it, though I'd want to rebuild that (I like woodworking). If we assumed for a minute that I was a corral  husbandry whiz, and if I asked the dreaded...... how much light would I need over a standard 65 gallon tank to support some of the more demanding SPS, what would you guys say? Honestly, I have this tank, sump, skimmer, and stand all in storage. If my  proposed new tank is pushing 30+ gallons, as some of you have suggested, should I just go for it and get the 65 going? I've always been intimidated on how to light this tank. 15 years ago I would have said twin 175 watt metal hailides with possibly some supplemental VHO's. What do you guys suggest to light a standard 65 gallon for, let's just say, modestly demanding SPS corrals? Would twin AI Primes do it? If If it turns out that I'm leaning towards a larger aquarium, and if the money and ease of maintenance lines up, I might just do the 65, even though it's the old fashioned, rimmed tank (Booooooo!!!). Additionally, I don't particularly like bow front tanks, I feel that they distort the inhabitants of the tank enough to annoy me (no offense!), but I have a 28 gallon bow front tank that is used, but in EXCELLENT condition. As much as I want a fancy new low-iron, rimless, tank, What do you guys think of these two options? Keep in mind, I have a serious and brand new skimmer, plus a sump and more (heaters, big return pump, media reactor, some circ pumps, etc.). Should I spend my money on a completely new nano tank in the 10-20 gallin range, or spend my money on decent lights for the 28 or 65, knowing that these will not have that polished, "brand new" look I'm hoping for. What would you guys do?

 

Thanks very much for all the help, I really appreciate it!!

 

-D
 

 

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Detritus   
21 hours ago, Clown79 said:

You don't need a skimmer on even a 30g. Many run their tanks without one and with no issue. 

The key is good, proper, routine mainten, low bioload.

 

The fluval is nicer in person than it appears. The lighting is fine but not very programmable.

 

The biocubes are nice but personally I don't like the curved glass or the hood. The lighting is fine for softies and lps.

 

The downside to a 10g is the limiting space and limitation on livestock. 

 

This was the rimless I was mentioning 

https://www.marinedepot.com/AquaMaxx_Long_Low_Iron_Rimless_Aquarium_12_Gallon_Nano_Cube_Aquariums_Tanks_10_19_Gallons-AquaMaxx-UJ69455-FIAQNCNTTN-vi.html

Ah, thank you! Just what I thought about the skimmers! And I need to be clear, fish are not my focus with this tank, inverts are, so low bioload = no problem ;-)  And as far as the Fluval tank, and I really trust you and don't want to offend you, but it's got that black stuff running across the top of the tank, as if in lieu of a rim, and it's just not to my liking. I'm thinking rimless, or one of my old, but in great condition, tanks. Thanks for stopping by!

 

-Detritus

 

22 hours ago, saltaquareef said:

Good luck. Go with your gut!

 

22 hours ago, 1967type1 said:

I second the IM 10 and 20. They are great tanks and are very versatile. In my 10 I have a skimmer, a refugium, and will be adding a auto top off soon. Im having so much fun with this tank!

Thanks for the help, guys! At this point if I buy a new AIL, it will almost certainly be the IM Fusion series. I like the look and price, plus I really like what I've seen other members here do with them. If I can be half as successful as some of the NR.com members, I'd be thrilled!

 

Thanks very much for stopping by!

 

-Detritus

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Lula_Mae   
31 minutes ago, Detritus said:

Hi, Lula_Mae! This was a great reply, well said, and I thank you! To be clear, I am far from a total noob, I know very well this is an expensive hobby, and I'm preparing for that. After all, I'm here talking about, what I would call, pretty darn expensive fish tanks, and a light that is as much as a decent car payment, plus everything else. I just said I wanted to take my time, research, ask, and then try to buy the best possible gear for my tank and situation. I'm hoping to do the "buy it once, and buy it right" kind of thing. What I'm trying to avoid is getting, for example, a cheapy kit "just to get going", and then having to up grade nearly everything, which in the long run is far more expensive than slowly acquiring quality equipment. I did ask about going without a skimmer, at least at first, but that's because I would use that money to get a good ATO, which seems far more vital to these small systems, and I thought a skimmer would be easier to add later if needed. That, and again, the reviews for these small skimmers that fit the AIO tanks seems mixed to me, some swear they work great, others say they are garbage.

 

Additionally, though nothing is set in stone (see bellow), the decision to start a smaller tank is partly financial, but it's also a case of where the heck am I going to put a 30 gallon or larger tank in my house? I'm not saying I can't do it, but that requires real thought, and the construction of a nice stand (I am an amateur woodworker too). And now I'm talking about preparing, storing, and handling a fair amount of saltwater each week or so, and I'm not sure I want that. I still have a 55 gallon Brute garbage can for mixing saltwater in a storage unit, but I'm not sure I want to get into all that right now. Part of the appeal of a smaller tank for me is that I can have something like a food grade 5 gallon bucket as my mixing container, and I can swap out a few gallons of saltwater at each change really easily. I think that the ease of doing water changes, combined with their relative importance on these small systems, and I'm going to be more likely to strictly maintain my schedule. Yes, I know, I have to strictly maintain my schedule ;-)

 

I also want to point out that I'm really just chatting and throwing out ideas - largely as a way to get my posts up so I can avail myself of the great deals to be found in the NR.com's buy/sell section ;-) I'm also a long time member of reefcentral, so I can be looking there too. Nothing I say here is set in stone, except that I want a reef tank again, and I want to take my time, research, and really do this one right from all considerations, including ease of maintenance, budget, and over all aesthetics of the aquarium. Indeed, I'm a fairly handy guy, and like the DIY stuff, but in this case I'm really looking to buy most everything just so it looks as clean and professional as possible, not cobbled together on a shoe string budget, and I mean ABSOLUTELY NO offense to those who have do just that. But that's the basics of the tank I'm really beginning to imagine.

 

Sorry if I was ranting or being negative!! I"m not trying to be that kind of NR.com member ;-)

 

On a lighter note, and again just throwing around ideas, I have a 65 gallon reef ready I bought at least 15 or more years ago, and then I lucked out and got a good deal on the 125 gallon I eventually set up (mentioned previously in my first post). The 65 is basically brand spanking new, never seen water, just storage dust. I also have a Reef Octopus 8" skimmer and a 55 gallon glass tank I converted into something of a Melev's Reef Model F sump. I've even got a stand for it, though I'd want to rebuild that (I like woodworking). If we assumed for a minute that I was a corral  husbandry whiz, and if I asked the dreaded...... how much light would I need over a standard 65 gallon tank to support some of the more demanding SPS, what would you guys say? Honestly, I have this tank, sump, skimmer, and stand all in storage. If my  proposed new tank is pushing 30+ gallons, as some of you have suggested, should I just go for it and get the 65 going? I've always been intimidated on how to light this tank. 15 years ago I would have said twin 175 watt metal hailides with possibly some supplemental VHO's. What do you guys suggest to light a standard 65 gallon for, let's just say, modestly demanding SPS corrals? Would twin AI Primes do it? If If it turns out that I'm leaning towards a larger aquarium, and if the money and ease of maintenance lines up, I might just do the 65, even though it's the old fashioned, rimmed tank (Booooooo!!!). Additionally, I don't particularly like bow front tanks, I feel that they distort the inhabitants of the tank enough to annoy me (no offense!), but I have a 28 gallon bow front tank that is used, but in EXCELLENT condition. As much as I want a fancy new low-iron, rimless, tank, What do you guys think of these two options? Keep in mind, I have a serious and brand new skimmer, plus a sump and more (heaters, big return pump, media reactor, some circ pumps, etc.). Should I spend my money on a completely new nano tank in the 10-20 gallin range, or spend my money on decent lights for the 28 or 65, knowing that these will not have that polished, "brand new" look I'm hoping for. What would you guys do?

 

Thanks very much for all the help, I really appreciate it!!

 

-D
 

 

I guess it would depend on whether you're feeling ready to dive in with a big tank, though I'd definitely want to make sure the silicone seals are still good after 15 years, or if you want to try out something sleek and new.  If you will be happy with a bigger tank that allows more fish options but will be more work to maintain, potentially, go for it!  If you're looking for something smaller and lower maintenance, I'd suggest going with your original plan of a smaller IM tank.  You can always upgrade to one of the bigger tanks later!  A smaller one might allow you to get started sooner as you won't have to try so hard to find a place for it.  I'll defer to others more knowledgeable on big tanks for your other questions. :)

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Detritus   

^^Thank you again, Lula_Mae! It's probably beyond my budget to properly set up my 65 gallon, so I'm likely looking at a much smaller tank, but I'd really be interested in what some of you might think I need to light such a tank. Yes, I know, not strictly a nano any more, but an answer to this question relates to my original post about what tank to get. And in the end, I see myself with more than one tank, both at home and at work, but for now I want to try to do just one tank really well. Any help would be much appreciated!

 

EDIT: I'm *sure* the silicon seals on the 65 are fine, the tank looks great, just dusty. I will of course water test it before committing to it. And really, it's probably going to prove to be too big, too expensive right now for me to work with, but it's an idea.

 

Oh, do most of you run quarantine tanks? I'm guessing you do, and maybe I should get one of those going before I do anything else, keeping in mind I have LOTS of old tanks and HOB filters and such. Does anyone know a good how to for quarantine tanks for reefers? I mean, is this just for fish, or everything? Sand, or bare bottom? Any thoughts?

 

Thanks everyone!

 

-D

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Lula_Mae   
13 minutes ago, Detritus said:

^^Thank you again, Lula_Mae! It's probably beyond my budget to properly set up my 65 gallon, so I'm likely looking at a much smaller tank, but I'd really be interested in what some of you might think I need to light such a tank. Yes, I know, not strictly a nano any more, but an answer to this question relates to my original post about what tank to get. And in the end, I see myself with more than one tank, both at home and at work, but for now I want to try to do just one tank really well. Any help would be much appreciated!

 

EDIT: I'm *sure* the silicon seals on the 65 are fine, the tank looks great, just dusty. I will of course water test it before committing to it. And really, it's probably going to prove to be too big, too expensive right now for me to work with, but it's an idea.

 

Oh, do most of you run quarantine tanks? I'm guessing you do, and maybe I should get one of those going before I do anything else, keeping in mind I have LOTS of old tanks and HOB filters and such. Does anyone know a good how to for quarantine tanks for reefers? I mean, is this just for fish, or everything? Sand, or bare bottom? Any thoughts?

 

Thanks everyone!

 

-D

A lot of people don't run QT's but it is always a good idea.  For fish, a bare bottom tank with PVC will work fine, and if you google, there's an article that pops up on making a QT for saltwater fish.  Some also QT corals but if you don't, make sure you're dipping them in Lugol's or Bayer or something, with a careful inspection.

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Detritus   
4 minutes ago, Lula_Mae said:

A lot of people don't run QT's but it is always a good idea.  For fish, a bare bottom tank with PVC will work fine, and if you google, there's an article that pops up on making a QT for saltwater fish.  Some also QT corals but if you don't, make sure you're dipping them in Lugol's or Bayer or something, with a careful inspection.

Yeah, I figured this was more for the fish, and I did remember bare bottom and easy to disinfect PVC pipe for hides. I'll do a search and see what the consensus is for should you, or should you not, run a  QT, and if so, then how.

 

Thanks again, Lula_Mae, I appreciate you stopping by and offering your suggestions! 

 

-Detritus

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Detritus   

Hello again! Could someone please help me understand how most folks who use more standard, non AIO tanks handle their filtration?  Do they rely of hang-on-back equipment, or would they drill the tank?

 

Thank you!

 

-D

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I have a larger tank (70 gallons) and I drilled mine and am running a sump but I'm only doing live rock and macro algae for filtration as an exsperiment. So far so good.

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Detritus   
5 minutes ago, 1967type1 said:

I have a larger tank (70 gallons) and I drilled mine and am running a sump but I'm only doing live rock and macro algae for filtration as an exsperiment. So far so good.

HI! Thanks for the reply! 70 gallons is a little big for me, I think. The largest tank I'm considering is 65 gallons, and that one is reef ready. I'm asking more specifically about these newer, rimless, low-iron tanks in the 10 to maybe 40 gallon range. Something like the IM Nuvo Black series. 

 

Thanks again!

 

-D

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In that case it's really up to you. The only benefit I could think of to drilling is getting a little more water for stability.

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Detritus   
28 minutes ago, 1967type1 said:

In that case it's really up to you. The only benefit I could think of to drilling is getting a little more water for stability.

And to keep the equipment out of (and off of) the tank, and to step into a full sump with a real skimmer, reactors, fuge, etc. I just think it would be a cleaner look, which is something I like in the AIO's, and something I'm hoping to achieve with this tank.

 

Thanks again!

 

-Detritus

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Flexin   

You can heave a clean look with a closed stand and canopy.  After that, there are so many things you can do.  You can still have hang on items, sump or no sump, refugium hang on, in the sump or not.  If you go with a 65 I would recommend two AI primes for the spread.  If I only use one AI on my 65 I have a strong spot and then weaker areas.  It's a powerful light, just with a 65 I found having two give me an even spread everywhere in the tank.  

 

1967type1, not to hijack this thread but I want to hear about your tank..

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Detritus   

Hey, Flexin! Thanks for stopping by. So you run a 65 with two AI Primes? Can I ask what kind of corrals you're keeping, and how long you're tank have been established? 

 

Thank you for the help!

 

-D

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Take a look at Ultum Nature Systems rimless aquariums. Search it and you should find them for sale at BucePlant. And I would recommend not to drill, instead use a lifereef nano overflow box. Or a Cpr hang on back refugium. Something to consider....

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