New to the game - need some advice

al'stank

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Hi there, I am new to the game. I have a nano (2ft or 60lt) FO with 1 small piece of live rock. I have an in the tank small skimmer and an all in one filter and heater. I do about a 30% water change every 2 wks. I have 2 clowns, 1 banana wrasse, 1 turbo snail, 1 hermit crab and 1 cleaner shrimp. I have 2 T5s - one blue, one white and 1 power head (600lt/h).
I have about 2cm crushed coral. The tank has been going for 6 wks and nothing has died yet :thumbup:. I know fish only are easier and I am planning my "new tank".
Here are my thoughts. I want a smaller display tank, but something that is longer for some tangs. PLus it won;t cost as much to stock with coral, annemonies and fish. But I want a big filter sump and fuge. The tank I am guessing to be about 900x300x300 (90lt) then to have a 60lt sump (with skimmer, mechanical filter and ???? suggestions) and 60 lt fuge (15cm dsb and cheato). Because the tank is not that deep - will 4 T5s be sufficient (2 blue - 2 white).
Value your input as I begin this venture.
Al
 

crispin

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hello al:)

welcome to MASA nice that you joined us.

there is so much to learn in marines and with you just starting out, i'm sure you'll have lots of questions to ask, the more you ask the easier you'll find the answers so fire away and dont hold back:)

there are a few slight red flags going up about your current tank so forgive me for raising them, but they should help you and your tank mates in the end:)


with the tank going for only 6 weeks and with only a very little live rock i wouldnt have thought its totally finished cycling.that means you shouldnt really have the snails and hermits (what we call clean up crew) in yet. after a little longer you might add your first fish. So in other words id say you are rushing the filtration a little and that might be problomatic, although its great to hear that no fish have died! (yet?) :) So please dont add any fish or creatchures for a while ok:)

how course (as in particle size) would you say your substrate is? if possible try post a pic of the tank and the substrate so we can see.

its an important question, especially in a nano as it can lead to a detritus build up and that plays havoc with nitrates and nitrites leading to poor qulity water etc etc. also that lovely wrass of yours likes finer substrate to burrow in, although i would hazard a guess that the tanks a little small for him anyway...lets see what others say on that point though.

post a few pics of your tank and lets see what we can do to help:)
 

Tobes

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Welcome to MASA Al. A bit quick to have all that live stock in after only 6 weeks.
What are your water parameters?
With what do you top up your evapourated water?
How big is the crushed coral?
Tangs can only be kept in a tank of min 50 gallons (225 litres), that is the bare minimum. Some tangs require no less than 70 gallons (315 litres) - obviously the bigger the better. Also remember they are very territorial.
Anemones must only be added to a system older than 9 months, 12 months is even better - they are very delicate creatures and need strong light and near perfect water conditions to thrive. In the wild they can live for 200 years or more.
15cm is perfect for a DSB, the bigger the surface area the better and a DSB takes long to work its magic - 6 months to mature properly ;)
Read a lot in the other forums and don't be shy to ask - we are all here to help each other and to enjoy this wonderful hobby :wave2:
 

scubaninja

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welcometomasa

i wouldnt really suggest the idea of an anemone until the new tank you are setting up is mature which can be up to about a year for most tanks, irrespective of size. and never more than one species or there will be serious chemical warfare going on. they require pristine water conditions and a high light intensity. So do a lot of research before attempting to get one. and take everything slow
 

dallasg

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welcometomasa
 

jacquesb

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Hi Al! Firstly, a VERY WARM WELCOME to MASA! Great that you have found MASA and joined us!

These are my thoughts - please don't take them as the end-all-be-all. But, with "been-there-got-all-the-T-shirts" thing - I think that my words sometimes count for something ;)

Keeping TANGS is a thing that should rather be left until such time as you have been able to keep your current fish alive for at least a year.
Also - TANGS require HUGE amount of swimming space - ie. the tank they are being kept in, should be NO LESS than a 1.5 metre - or at LEAST a 1 metre cube (1000 litres).... Otherwise you end up with dying fish..... as tangs stress VERY easily, get cryptocaryon irritans (marine ich)......
 

Ross

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Welcome.....

I want to put my 2 cents in here if that is ok. I have been running a nano for a long time now and the one thing I would like to recommend to you is to go bare bottom. I only recently have after being dead set against BB and the difference in my tank is amazing. You would not believe what came out when I took the substrate out. The nice thing with the nano is it will be no time before your rocks and coral cover the bottom and you will never notice the BB.
 

Tobes

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Welcome.....

I want to put my 2 cents in here if that is ok. I have been running a nano for a long time now and the one thing I would like to recommend to you is to go bare bottom. I only recently have after being dead set against BB and the difference in my tank is amazing. You would not believe what came out when I took the substrate out. The nice thing with the nano is it will be no time before your rocks and coral cover the bottom and you will never notice the BB.
There are a lot of healthy tanks with substrate and you have the added bonus of micro life in the ground - It all comes down to good husbandry. Bare bottom is easier to keep clean but substrate looks more natural...
 

Ross

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There are a lot of healthy tanks with substrate and you have the added bonus of micro life in the ground - It all comes down to good husbandry. Bare bottom is easier to keep clean but substrate looks more natural...
Oh yes I agree, having substrate is more natural and I was a very big fan. I will also probably be putting substrate in my new tank. But when you look at how easy it is to fill a nano with rock and coral, it would soon cover the BB.

If you keep the substrate, learn from the start to keep it clean and stirred. You dont want all that crap in your tank.
 

al'stank

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Hey Guys,
Thanks for all the welcomes. Heard good stuff about your friendliness and now experienced it. Something on the side - how do I sort my profile with cool pics on the left?
Attached are pics of the tank and live stock.
1539497d85081fea0.jpg

60cmx30cmx30cm (60lt)
1539497d85a79d7dc.jpg

Only piece of LR behind DR - fit in the palm of your hand

What would you suggest the plan of action be to ensure that my nano matures and fish are healthy?
They are in and eating, and brown algae is growing here and there (especially on substrate where the "feeding line" is. I feed them once a day at 5pm and the 2 T5s are on from 12noon until 10pm. Is more live rock a good plan? Must I cure it (and how) and must I introduce it slowly (spikes).

The filter I have - is it ok? Just got the heater, sponge, charcoal, ceramic - that's is.
I think I am surviving on water changes at the moment - over eagerness I suppose.
Is the small inhouse skimmer ok (in background behind filter - clean it once a day (very small cup) some gathered green gunk.


This is the future plan for a bigger tank.

I have a 100lt tank (60cmx30cmx50cm) that I was given and I am considering turning that into a sump, then when I get a bigger tank (5ft - 240lt) converting the nano now into a fuge with 15cm dsb and chaeto. I will work on a scketch to share with you but now the plan is to keep the nano going and healthy so I wecome your suggestions for improving the nano.
Thanks again guys.
Al
 
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Mike

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Al,
Top left you will see "user CP" click on that and you get a drop down menu, go to "edit options" and have a play - if you get into trouble, pm me and i can fix it for you.

(pm = private message, the link is just under your name on the top right)
 

Tobes

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Welcome to MASA Al. A bit quick to have all that live stock in after only 6 weeks.
What are your water parameters?
With what do you top up your evapourated water?
How big is the crushed coral?
Tangs can only be kept in a tank of min 50 gallons (225 litres), that is the bare minimum. Some tangs require no less than 70 gallons (315 litres) - obviously the bigger the better. Also remember they are very territorial.
Anemones must only be added to a system older than 9 months, 12 months is even better - they are very delicate creatures and need strong light and near perfect water conditions to thrive. In the wild they can live for 200 years or more.
15cm is perfect for a DSB, the bigger the surface area the better and a DSB takes long to work its magic - 6 months to mature properly ;)
Read a lot in the other forums and don't be shy to ask - we are all here to help each other and to enjoy this wonderful hobby :wave2:
:whistling::whistling:
 

al'stank

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Tobes,
Sorry not to get to ur questions. Water parameters (don't know - usually take water to lfs, but have read some duzis. Will get a test kit asap (i know - this is a must, sound like a real newby hey :))

Crushed coral is about 2mm in diameter.
I have boosted my future tank specs. Let me know what you think of "THE PLAN" attached below. Also appreciate input on what other filter media to put in sump.
1539497dc092ecdff.jpg

I know now that the live stock was a quick entry, so I am doing about 15% water change every week, with RO "salted" water from LFS, I do also have just RO water to add because I find their water a bit too salty.
Before I add, I stick a spare heater in to get the temp up. Does the PH need to be exact or is there some room for difference?
Shot for the help.
Al
 
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Tobes

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Every tank's water level drops due to evapouration - do you top up with salt water or fresh RO water?
What is a bit too salty? With what do you measure the salinity?
Another Q, why do you wanna run the overflow from the DSB through the skimmer? If there are any copepods and amphipods or other critters they will be removed where they actually could've fed your tank. The ideal is for the Refugium/DSB with chaeto to overflow gravity feed back into the tank - in other words in needs to be above the tank. This is not always possible, so most guys use a 3 chamber sump - 1 = skimmer, 2 = DSB with chaeto, 3 = return pump. The pump might chop the pods a little here and there, but it will be a roller coaster ride for most of them ;)
 

Jaak

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Welcome to MASA!!
 

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