A very WARM WELCOME to MASA, Gerswhin! I am very glad that you found us! Very good place to start your journey into keeping marines!
Ok - a few questions:
1) do you already have the tank?
2) if you have, can you perhaps please post pictures? of everything that you have already? - it just makes it MUCH easier to give you the best advice...
3) do you have a sump with that tank?
4) do you have a skimmer alread?
5) do you have lighting for the tank already?
6) what would you like to achieve with the marine tank? short term? medium term? long term?
A few comments:
1) please take EVERYTHING you hear from your LFS (local Fish store) with a pinch of salt, and come and double-check EVERYTHING here with us, before you spend money.....
2) this is a VERY long term commitment - please be VERY patient - PATIENCE is rewarded in this hobby...
3) this hobby can cost a lot of money, over long periods of time - be prepared...
I take the hobby like this - I buy what I can afford, when I can afford it... Sometimes, with the awesome corals and fish you get, one tend to be like a small kid in a toy / candy store.... just want-want-want ;-) But be prepared to think twice - change your mind-set...
If you do this, you will be a VERY happy and succcesful reefkeeper!
4) Please read as MUCH as you can, and ASK as many questions as you can... HAve a read through the other "New Members" threads - there many questions have already been answered
5) be prepared to learn the following terms, and also start making decisions accordngly: LFS, skimmer, filtration, plumbing, test-kits, sump, DSB, SSB, bare bottom, metal halide, T5 fluorescents, actinics, Kelvin, NSW, synthetic salt, live rock, dead rock, substrate, micro fauna, macro algae, nuisance algae, phosphates, nitrates, ammonia, nitrites, pH, calcium, soft-corals, LPS, SPS, glass, acrylic, phosphate reactor, calcium reactor, chemical filtration, mechanical filtration, water flow, power-heads, wave-makers, surge devices, etc...
These are just some of the terms that we use here in the hobby, and on MASA...
Please ask as many questions as needed, as you go along.
REMEMBER: DON'T BE IN A HURRY - PATIENCE IS THE NAME OF THE GAME WITH KEEPING MARINES!
thanks guys LOL i only have the 2m tank (yes it is drilled and has a sump) i have been doing cichlids for 5yrs but need a change, i dont have anything else YET i want info 1st.
1 lighting - how much, colour bulbs, watts etc
2 contenst of sump
3 sea water or salt mix
4 air stones- how much
5 power heads how much
6 uplift pump how strong
7 any other info LOL
guys i only know cichlids have NO freaking clue about marine all i know is I WANT ONE- PLEASE HELP
what are you planning on keeping?fish only with LR or corals,if so sofites/LPS or SPS?
1.depending on what you keeping.
2.1.chamber for overflow from tank and skimmer
3.return to tank
3.up to you
5.as many as you can.the more flow the better.go for the Seio range.great value for money.
5.Return pump of about 6000lph.
7.decent skimmer,atleast 100kgs of LR,aragonite or playsand for substrate or DSB
Ok - firstly, I closed your other thread, Gerswin.
To answer your questions:
1) Lighting: this will depend on whether you just want to start off with a fish only and possibly some soft-corals and/or some LPS corals, or whether you want to go FULLY blown reef..
Here's your lighting options:
a) T5's only - you should add +-8 or 10 39 watt T5's (1 metre units - either 4 per half of the tank or 5 per half of the tank) for a fish only, or alternatively fish with some soft-corals/LPS corals....
This will not specifically be good enough lighting for anemone's. You should rather get metal halides if you want to keep clams or anemones, or perhaps add even MORE T5's to the tank then.
= buy commercial T5 units, already built for marine tank use: +-R800 per unit - each unit usually houses either 3 or 4 T5 globes)
= do DIY - get the "cheap" T5 balasts from an electrical store/electrical wholesaler (ie. ARB in Montague Gardens). You will then need starters and end-caps too for the T5 globes - you can then fit/mount this to a "bord" of some sorts. You will just need to get some reflectors too.
= the T5 globes:
- you can either get Sylvania T5 globes (either from Local Fish Store) or from "The Lamphouse" in Milnerton (Koeberg Rd)
- or get specialist T5 globes, ie. ATI, Deltec, Geissemann from you LFS (expensive option - but very good).....
= metal halides:
- same as T5's - either commercial purpose built/sold for marines - units
- DIY - get metal halide fittings and control gear from a lighting shop (cheaper option)
- Metal Halide globes: you can get them either from your LFS, or from "The Lamphouse" (cheaper option), or you can get ie. "Daylight" 150 watt metal halide globes (Osram) from a lighting shop - but then you need to add more blue globes (actinics) to counter-act the possibility of the water looking "yellow"....
2) sump design:
- 1st chamber, skimmer and down-pipe from tank
- 2nd chamber, DSB and refugium (refugium/algae scrubber)
- 3rd chamber: either chemical filtration, or return pumps/phosphate reactor/heater, etc....
3) NSW/synthetic mix:
= NSW: pro's - much cheaper (theorectically) - you can go fetch water from either 2 Oceans aquarium, or the research aquarium in Sea Point
- is already natural
- don't need to buy synthetic salt and RO machine and spend time mixing the water
- sometimes contains phosphates/nitrates
- water parameters not always the same
- might contain micro-life that MIGHT cause problems with the animals in the tank (if you use the NSW immediately - if you let it stand for at least a week, these little micro organisms die off)
- you still have to dose chemicals
= Synthetic salt:
Pro's - contains a lot of chemicals that's good for the corals of the tank
- you can see what the ingredients are in the salt - you know what you are adding to the tank
- you can control the parameters better, esp salinity
Con's - expensive
- effort to mix RO water and salt
- you get "not so good" and "slightly better" and "very good" salts....
4) no - you don't use air-stones in a marine tank
5) power-heads - you want to ideally achieve at least 50 times your display tank volume turnover - if your 2 metre tank is like mine, then you looking at +-650 litres of water (after live rock and sand), which means you require at least 32000 to 35000 litres of water turnover/flow in your tank. How you do this, will depend on you..... Either a few/lot of smaller power-heads, or fewer stronger/bigger power-heads....
6) uplift pump? do you mean "return pump" from sump? ideally you don't want more than 3 to 4 times the water flow-through, when compared to the total volume water in your sump. For example, in my tank's sump, I have +-150 litres of water, I have a 2000 litres per hour return pump.... MORE than enough...
7) other info:
- testing kits:
= ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, pH, calcium (when you start keeping corals), salinity (all of these specifically for marines)
- skimmer - don't skimp on the skimmer - get as big a skimmer as you can afford - look at the ReefTek/ReefOctopus range of skimmers
- Deep sand bed - decide if you want a deep sand bed IN the tank, or just in the SUMP.... Deep sand bed = sand bed, with a depth of at least 12cm to 15cm deep, where the sand particles are between 0.05mm and 1.5mm in size....
There's a LOT more info... BUT no help to give too much info too fast...
thanks alot Jacques, if i only have a DSB in the sump-should it be the hight of the sump? the heater in 3rd chamber-300w?the temp? wont it cause a drop in temp during the return process or shuold it be there and not in the tank? i currntly have 2 300w heaters IN my other 2m regulating at 25 degrees, i know its different thou