View Full Version : New Reef Keeper With An 3 Year Old Reef Tank

02/08/2009, 07:47 PM
Hi Everyone,
About a week ago I purchased a friend's tank that he has had going for coming on 3 years. Its a 72Gal bowfront with with I think is a 20 Gal sump. I have a 1/3 hp chiller, what I would call standard lights (2 white, 2 blue, moonlights), a dinky heater that Ive since ordered a replacement for, and of course a skimmer. Right now there is a koralia nano powerhead in there and I know I need to add more... Its on the right side of the tank. My friend that set me up with this has done a nice job, but hes been my only resource up until I found this fantastic site... Some questions I have would be; how often do you guys think I should feed, what kind of maintenance would you all suggest, and how many/where should I put the pair of koralia #2s I just ordered...

So anyways, hello and please give me some advise on how to take this tank to the next level as far as getting it looking as good as I can with what I have, and maybe some suggestions on what I should get next? I think it could use some other colors. Also I would really like to simplify maintenance. I took a drive to the LFS for salt water and RO water and doing this once a week sucks. Im going to get a RO machine and some salt at some point as well.


02/08/2009, 07:53 PM
Hey Rob, that is a sexy tank man. Wish I had some advice to give you but I am a newbie at this too, so all I can say is very nice set-up, bueno suerte.

02/08/2009, 08:10 PM
How many fish do you have and what kind? What do you have for a clean up crew? As far as placing the Koralias you don't want the flow to directly hit anything just kind of stir the water up around things. You could start by placing one at each end of the tank one in front and the other going in the other direction in the back.

02/08/2009, 08:15 PM
I have 4 fish... Yellow Tang, some kind of wrass, a damsil (its blue with a spot), and a clownfish in the anemone. There are some little crabs in there I guess 6-10? Hard to say.

keith burns
02/08/2009, 08:52 PM
what kind of light do you run?

keith burns
02/08/2009, 08:52 PM
what kind of light do you run?

do you have a sump?

02/08/2009, 09:29 PM
The current light is a corralife. It has 4 bulbs. Two white, two blue, and then there are 4 LED moonlights. Its not labeled as a corrallife but this is what I am told it is. The problem is, that the rear right side light socket has "melted." This is something that happened before I got the tank. So, one of the blue lights is a different type of bulb (with pins at each end instead of the U-shaped bulbs with pins at one end), its in its own fixture until my replacement arrives this week (with new bulbs too). I would like to step up to a MH fixture, but I think thats a little ways off as I learn what I am doing!

12x24x18 is the size of the sump.

02/08/2009, 10:07 PM
Nice looking tank!

02/09/2009, 01:42 AM
Thanks! I appreciate the comments!

02/09/2009, 01:57 AM
i would have gone with k3's atleast if not k4's.. 2 k2's is not going to be enough

02/09/2009, 05:05 AM
If you have the light that I think you have you do have MH. I have the Coralife Pro and it has two MH, two flurescents, and 4 lunar. Do you have three different lights? One white like day light, one like evening kind of blue, then one dark? You will need to add some snails to you clean up crew. You don't have to have a cleaner shrimp but they are cool and will eat from your hand. Tangs like to graze so you'll need to feed a small amout a couple times a day and hang some algae for him. This is a great place to get advice and learn. I have a 72 gallon bow front too. Surf here a lot and read some of the articles very informative. Don't forget to get your water test kits.

02/09/2009, 06:58 PM
Hi redviki, Yeah I can see how I might have not been clear but its definitely not a MH... Its a Fluorescent fixture... How many snails should I add? Thanks SO much! What kind of cleaner shrimp would you suggest?

02/09/2009, 07:25 PM
If you are going to do corals, try to find out when the lights were last replaced. MH lights are good for 6-8 months and do not burn out, but start burning oddly. Things will start doing poorly.

Get the test for alkalinity, calcium, and magnesium, (I use Salifert) and get a log book. Test frequently (every few days) and keep a log of the results and what you did.

Change out 10 percent of the water weekly...with ro/di water salted with 1/2 cup per gallon of salt mix. This will supplement trace elements and deliver a salinity of 1.024.

Be SURE you are topping off regularly with fresh ro/di water. My 54 gallon loses a gallon a day to evaporation: there are automated topoff systems if you don't have one. Ask.

Be sure to acclimate (adjust salinity) on any new purchase, and QUARANTINE it for 4 weeks in a separate tank to spot parasites and disease which must not get loose in your tank. Never allow a drop of fish store water to touch your tank.

Read the Threads marked * up at the top of this forum: one is a how-to manual that will help you a lot.

02/09/2009, 07:44 PM
I would add like 10 small nassarius, 5 certh, and 5 turbo snails to start. As far as cleaner shrimp I have the scarlet skunk cleaner and he's great. Read everything you can get your hands on there is a lot of information here. I read and researched for a year before I even set my tank up. Don't be afraid to ask questions and have fun. My husband calls my tank my therapy. I'm in it every night.

02/09/2009, 10:01 PM
Follow sk8r's advice. Rodi for all water changes, testing water chemistry is huge, spend some time in the chemistry forum. Patience and a lot of research here will save you a ton of time and money. From your pic, it looks like your tank is already in pretty fair shape. Adding more flow is a good start, also, If I were you and you don't already have one, an ato system is invaluable.

02/10/2009, 01:07 AM
OK, So currently I live in an area with fantastic water. Some of the best water in the country. BUT, I am about to move to our families ranch and the well for the house sucks. You can taste it, its got a lot in it. So, I REALLY want a RO unit. Is the D.I. something I should have? And does anyone have experience with hard water like this; will a RO/DI unit clean this up? How often will I have to change filters? And wow I recently came to realize that RO has a lot of waste water. So should I assume there will be even more waste when the water is worse?

To be clear, I am only moving maybe 10 miles away at best. All of the valleys water is underground, but the well on the ranch is probably just not deep enough. I dont want to make an hour long drive weekly to get water and pay for it too...

Am I pretty safe with a higher end system off ebay? Like this 7 stage etc etc?

02/10/2009, 05:03 AM
Sorry can't help with this one. I've bought two different Ro / DI units and the waste is too great. I buy bottled RO / DI water at the store.

02/10/2009, 07:00 AM
1+ on the bigger Koralias. I have a 75gal with two Koralia 3's and still think I need more.

Look here for a good RODI unit www.thefilterguys.com

02/10/2009, 10:05 AM
I use the wasted water to fill up the washing machine, water plants and pets, etc

02/10/2009, 10:58 AM
OK well I am going to be living on a date ranch where the primary means of irritgation is flood irrigation, so running a line 30 feet into the trees for the waste is a luxury for me... BUT, I still need to know if I will get acceptable water after a RO system, and how often you guys would suspect I will need to change the filters.

Also, I purchased a heater for my tank. I am concerned I got one that is too large. Its a 500W finnex. http://www.aquacave.com/finnex-500w-titanium-br-heater-with-hc810-digital-br-controller-2344.html#