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Isaacthedev

Help me pick equipment for my first nano reef :)

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I just got into the Hobby and decided to start with a Fluval 13.5Gallon, it’s going through the cycle now , as for equipment everything is stock with the addition of the PS2 protein skimmer, and an Eheim Heater. Right now, I need more flow in the tank, any recommendations for a pump less than $100? Also is the skimmer useful in this tank? Or am I better off with a Refugium?

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17 minutes ago, Isaacthedev said:

I just got into the Hobby and decided to start with a Fluval 13.5Gallon, it’s going through the cycle now , as for equipment everything is stock with the addition of the PS2 protein skimmer, and an Eheim Heater. Right now, I need more flow in the tank, any recommendations for a pump less than $100? Also is the skimmer useful in this tank? Or am I better off with a Refugium?

Hi & welcome!!

 

Also have the fluval and loving it so far. I’m using the innovative marine desktop wavelink (want to say was right at $99). I really enjoy it and it has a very small in tank footprint. I also purchased the Current USA eFlux, and it just didn’t give me enough power. The eFlux foam slip covers do fit the wavelink though (wish I’d known that before I bought the whole wavemaker lol).

 

I also upgraded the stock return pump to a sicce (believe the 1.0 model). But be wary, it’s a bit noisy — I’ve had it for just over two weeks and is finally quieting down.

 

I don’t use a skimmer, as well as many of the other Fluval owners//nano tank owners in general — your call to make. If you’re good with upkeep and water changes, you likely don’t need one.

 

There’s also a Fluval Evo owners forum you should check out. Lots of discussions on equipment if you’d like to check it out — link below 🙂

 

 

 

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12 minutes ago, Isaacthedev said:

I just got into the Hobby and decided to start with a Fluval 13.5Gallon, it’s going through the cycle now , as for equipment everything is stock with the addition of the PS2 protein skimmer, and an Eheim Heater. Right now, I need more flow in the tank, any recommendations for a pump less than $100? Also is the skimmer useful in this tank? Or am I better off with a Refugium?

Welcome to the hobby!  I have the same tank and have been pretty happy with it, but it does need a few upgrades to really work well:

 

*You need another filter.  I ran the stock one for moths and would clean it out weekly, and it always comes out completely clean. All the crap shot right through it and plugged up my pump and accumulated at the bottom of the back chambers.  InTank makes some great media baskets, or you can build your own like this one:

 

*For powerheads some people like the customization some of the high end poweheads offer, but if you want something simple the "hydor koralia nano powerhead" is an excellent basic powerhead.  I have used it for months and it moves water, and does it quietly.  About all I ask of it

 

*A lot of people say our lights are not sufficient for growing some corals.  That has not been an issue for me so far, but its something to keep in mind down the road as you grow more addicted to this hobby

 

I cant speak to a skimmer or a refugium, as I run neither. I have found if I don't overstock my tank and keep up with weekly 2g water changes then my parameters stay nice and happy without any extra equipment.

 

The fluval tank has been an excellent tank in my experience, and it should serve you very well!  Cant wait to see what you do with your tank!

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Hello and welcome

 

 

Skimmers aren't necessary on nano's, they can be beneficial with some systems and a negative on others.

 

Upgrading the stock filter would be the most beneficial. Getting a media basket from intank, using floss and carbon will be far better and most common method than the stock sponge.

 

Adding flow depends.

Stock pump may be weak. You could upgrade pump and add an rfg nozzle which will give you random flow and possibly prevent the need of a powerhead or just add a powerhead.

 

It really depends on livestock planned not all corals do well with heavy flow.

 

A great wavemaker that you can completely control and customize to your system is the aqamai kps.

 

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1 hour ago, Clown79 said:

Hello and welcome

 

 

Skimmers aren't necessary on nano's, they can be beneficial with some systems and a negative on others.

 

Upgrading the stock filter would be the most beneficial. Getting a media basket from intank, using floss and carbon will be far better and most common method than the stock sponge.

 

Adding flow depends.

Stock pump may be weak. You could upgrade pump and add an rfg nozzle which will give you random flow and possibly prevent the need of a powerhead or just add a powerhead.

 

It really depends on livestock planned not all corals do well with heavy flow.

 

A great wavemaker that you can completely control and customize to your system is the aqamai kps.

 

Yeah I should mention my livestock plan! I’m planing mostly LPS and Zoas, as for fish, just inverts and maybe a shrimp goby pair. I can only do a water change every two weeks, so do you think a Slimmer would help kept waste down during that time ? Or is a refugium better? Also I was thinking to just update the stock pump so I don’t need to put a power head in my tank. The LFS recommended the Tunze 6020 for my tank but it is advertised at 500GPH which I think is way over kill  

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1 hour ago, bomerst said:

Welcome to the hobby!  I have the same tank and have been pretty happy with it, but it does need a few upgrades to really work well:

 

*You need another filter.  I ran the stock one for moths and would clean it out weekly, and it always comes out completely clean. All the crap shot right through it and plugged up my pump and accumulated at the bottom of the back chambers.  InTank makes some great media baskets, or you can build your own like this one:

 

*For powerheads some people like the customization some of the high end poweheads offer, but if you want something simple the "hydor koralia nano powerhead" is an excellent basic powerhead.  I have used it for months and it moves water, and does it quietly.  About all I ask of it

 

*A lot of people say our lights are not sufficient for growing some corals.  That has not been an issue for me so far, but its something to keep in mind down the road as you grow more addicted to this hobby

 

I cant speak to a skimmer or a refugium, as I run neither. I have found if I don't overstock my tank and keep up with weekly 2g water changes then my parameters stay nice and happy without any extra equipment.

 

The fluval tank has been an excellent tank in my experience, and it should serve you very well!  Cant wait to see what you do with your tank!

Yeah, I see mixed reviews about a skimmer, I only plan on corals and inverts, maybe a goby so would a skimmer even be helpful? As for pump I think I will do the Sicce I was just worried it wouldn't fit.

QUESTION: 

which chamber do you use your in tank basket? 

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1 hour ago, Isaacthedev said:

Yeah, I see mixed reviews about a skimmer, I only plan on corals and inverts, maybe a goby so would a skimmer even be helpful? As for pump I think I will do the Sicce I was just worried it wouldn't fit.

QUESTION: 

which chamber do you use your in tank basket? 

My tank is stocked with a shrimp goby (and shrimp), a clown, a blenny, inverts and corals, and it does fine.  But like i said I dont own one and have never used one.


I put my media basked in chamber 2.  Chamber 1 holds my heater and and a float valve for a gravity-fed ATO, and chamber 3 holds my stock pump and some extra biomedia to use in a quarantine tank if someone gets sick.  Seems to work pretty well, and all the stock covers still fit (which keeps my troublesome goby from escaping, and really keeps evaporation down). 

 

Also there is a little hole that leads into chamber 2 from the main tank towards the bottom.  A lot of people plug that up, as it helps the tank remove floating waste a bit better. I plugged it up a few weeks ago and it really helped a lot.

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Sicce fits — it’s a tight squeeze, but it’ll fit. I checked, and I have the 1.0 model.

 

I have my media basket in first chamber, heater in chamber and plan to add small refugium setup there as well, and pump only in chamber 3. Someone pointed out to me not to place heater in same chamber as the return pump — reported some owners have had either their heater or return pump overheat and cause major tank issues (heater explosion & similar not fun stuff).

 

For a cheap alternative to the intank basket you can do a DIY basket made from egg crate. Cost me about $6-$8 total for egg crate and zip ties and took about 20mins to make. Here’s pic of mine, imitating the chamber 1 intank basket:

 

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5B2A6F3B-B8D2-438A-9295-2EFA9F7CF96C.thumb.jpeg.e75057a45f8e3ed8d34ae7629ded7368.jpeg

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I use a current eflux wave pump and love it. I have had it for about a year with no problems. Also have an intake media basket for chamber 2 and do not use a protein skimmer. I’m using the same heater as you and have it installed in chamber 1 

AD1C921D-64ED-4EB8-B551-1EEBBE6401A7.thumb.jpeg.25aea2e0029b30673e7863a117092733.jpegAB68B464-275C-4544-984A-2B7EC4E121BE.thumb.jpeg.143b92721ea1af4ffb1489e7c8533f73.jpeg

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1 minute ago, Mike P said:

I use a current eflux wave pump and love it. I have had it for about a year with no problems. Also have an intake media basket for chamber 2 and do not use a protein skimmer. I’m using the same heater as you and have it installed in chamber 1 

 AD1C921D-64ED-4EB8-B551-1EEBBE6401A7.thumb.jpeg.25aea2e0029b30673e7863a117092733.jpegAB68B464-275C-4544-984A-2B7EC4E121BE.thumb.jpeg.143b92721ea1af4ffb1489e7c8533f73.jpeg

That dark sand looks so nice in your setup!!

 

What's the flow range for your eFlux? I got the 660GPH and couldn't get it to produce anywhere near as much flow as I was hoping for 😞

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4 minutes ago, pricewayne said:

That dark sand looks so nice in your setup!!

 

What's the flow range for your eFlux? I got the 660GPH and couldn't get it to produce anywhere near as much flow as I was hoping for 😞

Thank you, I think the black sand makes the colors of my corals pop and it’s not to common. In the wave pump I use the 1050gph one and only have it at 30%, above that and sand starts blowing like crazy and my fish freak out.

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5 hours ago, Isaacthedev said:

Yeah I should mention my livestock plan! I’m planing mostly LPS and Zoas, as for fish, just inverts and maybe a shrimp goby pair. I can only do a water change every two weeks, so do you think a Slimmer would help kept waste down during that time ? Or is a refugium better? Also I was thinking to just update the stock pump so I don’t need to put a power head in my tank. The LFS recommended the Tunze 6020 for my tank but it is advertised at 500GPH which I think is way over kill  

I don't run a skimmer on any f my systems and my 25g which has 3 fish in it with regular feedings and even coral feedings, had such low nutrients I have a hard time keeping them up.

 

So skimmers benefit is really dependant on the system. I'd say start without and see if you need one because it's not a necessary piece of equipment for every system

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