please help getting tons of mixed info

Discussion in 'New to Reefing' started by diversdoitdeeper, Jul 1, 2012.

  1. diversdoitdeeper

    diversdoitdeeper new to the hobby

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    sorry to bother but im tired of everyone's different way of cycling and half of my friends have no idea what their talking about OK just started 20g high in my tank is live sand, 6lbs of dry rock and saltwater all from lfs no filter on the tank just a power head that pushes approx 1000 gph am i good?
    what do i need next? i was thinking digital thermometer and possibly heater?, but def hydrometer. Ive heard prime bacteria growth is at around 80 degrees id rather not buy a test kit id much rather walk two block and have my lfs test for me
     
    diversdoitdeeper, Jul 1, 2012
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  2. diversdoitdeeper

    Bifferwine I am a girl

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    You want 1 to 2 lbs of rock per gallon, so you should get more rock. You don't need to add it now; it's perfectly fine to add more rock over time. You don't need a filter for a tank that size, and the powerhead you have sounds fine for flow. I actually don't like the digital thermometers. I prefer the old school ones with the red liquid (alcohol). They are more accurate in my experience. They cost less than $2 at Petco or Petsmart, so you save money over a digital one as well. Depending on where you live and how you keep your house, you may not need a heater. My house stays a stable warm temperature all the time and I have never needed a heater in Arizona. If the thermometer shows that your tank fluctuates over a few degrees in a 24 hour period, then you will have to get a heater to keep the temperature stable. You will need a refractometer (better than a hydrometer) for sure. 80 degrees is fine, but keeping your tank at around 78 is better. Sometimes that's not possible if you live in a warm area, so in cases like that, keeping the temperature stable is more important.
     
    Last edited: Jul 1, 2012
    Bifferwine, Jul 1, 2012
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  3. diversdoitdeeper

    FishyReef Broke Reefer!

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    1. Welcome!
    2. You need more rock in your tank - rule of thumb is 1-2 lbs per gallon
    3. The best heaters you can get are going to be titanium ones that have an external thermometer and probe - the glass ones with the dial on top just don't last very long before they need to be replaced
    4. Definitely NOT a hydrometer - get a refractometer instead - they are far more accurate than hydrometers, which need to be replaced every 6mo or so.
    5. The 1000gph powerhead that you have might be too much for a 20g - I'd recommend getting 2 425gph's instead - check out hydro koralia nano powerheads
    6. You don't need to add the prime to the tank to cycle - if you have 1 piece of live rock and add an uncooked piece of shrimp from the grocery store, that is enough to get your cycle started. Once you see your ammonia start to go up, you can remove the shrimp if there's anything left of it. Your dry rocks will become live over the course of the cycle.
    7. Definitely buy your own test kit, and don't get one that uses test strips. API, Seachem, and Salifert are also decent kits. You need to make sure your basic test kit includes tests for ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, and pH. For corals, you also need to get tests for calcium, magnesium, and alk. Don't bother getting a test for phosphates - they are pretty inaccurate because phosphates only stay in the water column for about 7 seconds
    8. You're fine w/ no filter. Weekly 10% water changes will be enough to control nitrate levels once you've cycled and gotten live stock in your tank.
    9. What are you doing for lights?
     
    FishyReef, Jul 1, 2012
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  4. diversdoitdeeper

    diversdoitdeeper new to the hobby

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    yes definitely will get more rock later im very picky though when im ready for coral i have a great peice of 8 or so pound rock thats got xenia red mushroom and tons of coralline
    god i really hoped that you would be one of the ones to comment on this thread ive seen you in numerous threads and you always have great info thanks a million
     
    diversdoitdeeper, Jul 1, 2012
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  5. diversdoitdeeper

    diversdoitdeeper new to the hobby

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    thanks fishy reef
     
    diversdoitdeeper, Jul 1, 2012
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  6. diversdoitdeeper

    diversdoitdeeper new to the hobby

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    i was thinking t5's but not sure if i wanna save up for leds but i also have plans to eventually set my 100 gallon up so i have to remember that when spending all this money
     
    diversdoitdeeper, Jul 1, 2012
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  7. diversdoitdeeper

    Bifferwine I am a girl

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    The rock with the xenia and mushrooms would be perfect for starter corals. Be sure to get the lights first though. T5s are cheaper than LEDs up front, but LEDs save money on electricity and bulb replacement costs. For a small tank like that, I'd just go with T5s.
     
    Bifferwine, Jul 1, 2012
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  8. diversdoitdeeper

    diversdoitdeeper new to the hobby

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    yea thts what im thinkin im evntually gonna look into getting a White Banded Possum Wrasse super cool little fish
     
    diversdoitdeeper, Jul 1, 2012
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  9. diversdoitdeeper

    diversdoitdeeper new to the hobby

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    but i would have to get a screen cause he likes to jump
     
    diversdoitdeeper, Jul 1, 2012
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  10. diversdoitdeeper

    Bifferwine I am a girl

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    Bifferwine, Jul 1, 2012
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  11. diversdoitdeeper

    diversdoitdeeper new to the hobby

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    i would looooove a foxface but ill wait till my 110g is up and running cause there min requirement is 70g
     
    diversdoitdeeper, Jul 1, 2012
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  12. diversdoitdeeper

    diversdoitdeeper new to the hobby

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    yes already in the works x)
     
    diversdoitdeeper, Jul 1, 2012
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  13. diversdoitdeeper

    FishyReef Broke Reefer!

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    Not sure I'd wait too long on the rock - that is really going to be your primary source of biological filtration - without the rock, there won't be enough surface area for the nitrifying bacteria to grow... Good news though is that dry rock is far cheaper than live rock!
     
    FishyReef, Jul 1, 2012
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  14. diversdoitdeeper

    diversdoitdeeper new to the hobby

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    hey do you know of a good website to look for livestock on?
     
    diversdoitdeeper, Jul 1, 2012
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  15. diversdoitdeeper

    FishyReef Broke Reefer!

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  16. diversdoitdeeper

    diversdoitdeeper new to the hobby

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    thanks again
     
    diversdoitdeeper, Jul 1, 2012
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  17. diversdoitdeeper

    diversdoitdeeper new to the hobby

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    all these fish i see with 30g tank requirements i have seen in plenty nano reefs??
     
    diversdoitdeeper, Jul 1, 2012
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  18. diversdoitdeeper

    cvcdrk

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    Live Aquaria is pretty accurate when it comes to the specifications for tank size for most species. I would trust their judgement.

    Just because you see other people do it doesn't mean their fish are truly happy in that smaller tank.

    Regardless, there are plenty of species that will fit nicely in your 20g tank...and depending on when you plan to set up the larger tank you can even get juvenile fish and when they get too big move them over (in most cases, they are pretty difficult to catch, though).

    For your rocks, I would highly recommend marcorocks.com. I've worked with him and the prices are unbeatable, shipping is quick and easy and the rock is high quality and holey.

    You should get a piece of live rock even if it's very small, and the table shrimp as recommended before. I don't know how much you're looking to spend and this is by no means necessary but Microbacter7 is a product that has a good reputation for kickstarting cycles. $14 will get you enough to really kickstart your size tank.

    If you're debating between LEDs and T5s you might want to think about the future. T5s aren't that much cheaper than say, a MArineland Reef Capable LED system. How wide is your tank? This LED fixture can be found for about $180. Also, they make a nice Metal Halide fixture with t5 accents and blue moon LEDs and that can be had for like $170. You'll still spend less for the t5s but in the long run the LEDs will pay off...and look better as well. The Marineland LEDs are adjustable in length, too, which may allow you to use one on one side of the larger tank in the future.

    Hope that helps. Good luck!
     
    cvcdrk, Jul 1, 2012
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  19. diversdoitdeeper

    diversdoitdeeper new to the hobby

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    all very good to know gonna look up that marineland but ive heard there garbage
     
    diversdoitdeeper, Jul 1, 2012
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  20. diversdoitdeeper

    diversdoitdeeper new to the hobby

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    24iches long and 12 1/2 inches wide same footprint as a 15g just taller
     
    diversdoitdeeper, Jul 1, 2012
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