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Thread: tank size

  1. #1
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    tank size

    hey all, check my thread in off topic for my hello message.

    anyway, down to bidness... wondering about tank size, i'd like to set up a 20 to 40 gallon reef system (once i'm totally prepared of course), looking at a system with a mix of fiji, tonga and indo rockwork and am wondering about the best cost/size ratio, i know it's expensive to set up and i would like to go with a halide/actinic lighting setup....

    any pointers towards a good tank size for this? would MH on a 20 be overkill? (apparently not as far as nano-reef.com is concerned!!) i'm planning on adding an auto-topoff system so evaporation shouldn't be a supreme issue, but would like to keep costs as low as possible while still doing it right. i don't mind paying 25% more for 100% more tank space, but dont' really know the 'real life' factors that come into play with this.

    ideas? suggestions? flames?

  2. #2
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    I think the biggest tank for where you want to set it up would be the best solution. No, a MH would not be ovekill on a smaller tank, although you WILL have to deal with a heat issue probably.

  3. #3
    Senior Member ALRHA's Avatar
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    bigger is better as the more volume gives your tank more room for user error and more room for more corals and stuff of course.
    Albert
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  4. #4
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    yeah that's what i was thinking, and i know for my FW tanks the bigger ones are my favorites regardless of cost, and even though i'm planning a sump i know the extra 20 gallons would be good since i'm sure i won't nail the water balancing right off the bat..

    about adding live rock... is it best to add all at once and cycle everything together? or would adding 25% to 33% of total first and slowly filling the tank be best? would there even be a difference? my goal would be to preserve as much life on the rock as possible, i want to see what grows out and then add corals to compliment what i've got in 6 months or so...

  5. #5
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    MH is needed for many organisms (e.g. clams) but is not needed for all. I've seen many beautiful and healthy tanks running off VHO or PC lighitng (or even NO).

    Each time you add new LR to a tank, there will be a mini-cycle. I would have thought that, if your goal is to see what has grown by 6 months, it would be better to add most of the LR fairly quickly. That way, you would give the best chance for interesting things to grow. Perhaps buy two thirds of your needs and see how the aquascaping look. Then, add some more to fill that out and then add 'special' pieces over time.

    In my experience with starting up my first tank back in November (29G), it was the right size for learning and will give a good tank. But, once I am comfortable, I most likely will move up in size. I also found that my LR (which was good quality and fully cured) had interesting things on it but nothing really exciting. Certainly, there was nothing on my LR which would have influenced my choice of corals to add later.
    Nick

  6. #6
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    thanks for the info, i will definitely factor this in to my decision. i appreciate the voice of experience!

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