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Starting a 2.5 gal nano......please critique


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After moving to college I've decided to attempt a 2.5 gal nano instead of the originally planned 10g. I went to my LFS today and picked up a couple 2.5g tanks (one for display, one for fuge/sump). I also went to HomeDepot to gather some DIY supplies. I want to keep soft corals...polyps, zoos, shrooms mostly. Here is my proposed setup along with a few questions...please feel free to give any opinons. TIA.


1) I bought a couple 13W PC bulbs from HD but theyre only 6350K. Would these be ok? Im thinking maybe Ill add a couple coralife 50/50s (10000K, 03 actinic) for a total of 46W.;)

I may just go with two 50/50s though...for heat reasons.


2) I want to construct a custom overflow for my 2.5 using acrylic and a U-tube to an external specimen container. Then use flexible tubing to go to the sump/fuge. What size bulkhead would you recommend drilling?


3) The 2.5g sump/fuge will have an area for a future fuge followed by baffles and then an area that will house a heater and return pump. I thinking about a ViaAqua 1300 pump (puts out 300gph at 3' head)


4) Im a little confused on water circulation/movement on the return. Any suggestions would be appreciated. Id like a moderate amount of current in my 2.5g.


Also a DIY hood and base, 50W Ebo Jager heater in the sump and LR and LS of course.


Critique at will :P



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I have a top fin 10 on my 2.5 and the water movement is about right. The sump is a good idea. It is a great place to hide equipment. One thing you should add is an auto top off system. You will be surprised how much water evaporates in a day. For lighting I have 19 watt curlies on my tank until I can upgrade. If you have the money to start with 13 watt compact fluorescents go with them. They take up much less space than the screw-ins so you can add more lighting. I’m waiting till I have some extra money to upgrade my lighting.


This thread might give you some ideas. It is a little old but it sounds like what you are planning to do.


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