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  1. #11
    Moderator greech's Avatar
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    There really isn'y anything you can add to tap water to make it safer with the exception of a dechlorinator. If you cannot use RO I would used distilled water for mixing water and for top offs. If you want to stick with the hobby I would highly recommend that you find a source of RO/DI water or buy a RO/DI filter. www.bulkreefsupply.com is a great source for those IMO but there are mant places online to buy them. You may also find a used system somewhere like craigslist or on the for sale forums at sites like this.

    Instant Ocean is a perfectly fine salt. You should try to let you new SW mix for a few hours before using it (overnight even better). If you have an old pump or powerhead you can use to mix with it will help and also heat up the water. On your tank I would recommend weekly WC's of 10 to 20%. Get your DT's SG to where you want it (since you mentioned corals down the road you should set it somewhere in the neighborhood of 1.024 to 1.026. Match up your SG of the new water to the DT's SG and top off the tank in between WC's using fresh water (salt does not evaporate).

    Honestly, I would not add anything to the tank until you have a better handle on the tank and those nitrates lower. A cleaner shrimp will be a great addition but your tank may not be ready yet. If all that rock is mature, you should not see much of a cycle and those nitrates should dissipate fairly quickly on their own and/or by doing WC's. If you are going to a LFS tomorrow, take a water sample with you and have them confirm your results (can't hurt). Also, if the LFS you go to has a refractometer, they can confirm that your hydrometer is accurate (many are not). Just check your SG before you head out and see what their measuremnt is. They only need a couple of drops for a refarctometer.

    It looks like you have enough rock to me but more is generally better. Keep in mind that if the rock you get is uncured or it will be out of water for a while while you travel, you will have some dies off and that can throw your water off until it recures. You can also add CLEAN dry rock which will become live in a couple of months of being in your tank. You want porous rock but not something like lava rock.

    Hope I did not confuse you more and this helps somehow.

    EDIT: Also, you mentioned having a HOB filter. If it has a biowheel you may want to remove it. All of the biological filtration you need is in your rock and sand. You can leave it on for a while but eventually it will become a nitrate trap. Any mechanical filtration you use in a marine tank should be kept clean and/or replaced often so if you have a sponge in the filter you will want to rinse it out and or replace it. One media I might recomend to go in the filter would be Chemipure Elite.

    Another thing I just thought of is you don't have much flow in the tank. This is very important for several reasons even if you don't have corals. You need water to flow through your rock so your bacteria can "filter" it. Having one or two powerheads will also create surface agitation increasing dissolved oxygen and helping to keep pH balanced. The surface agitation will also break up the surface scum. Come to think of it, this may have had something to do with the damsel (lack of O2).

    Ok, I'm done rambling now...
    Last edited by greech; 11-03-2010 at 4:39 PM.





  2. #12
    Member sacrificetheory's Avatar
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    Rambling is fine with me! Any kind of knowledge to be passed on is very very welcome. So, add powerheads to my list. What kind do you think I need? As far as gph goes.
    Also, I have a HOB on one of my freshwater tanks that has higher gph, do you think it would be safe to swap them?
    I apologize if some of my questions sound redundant, I just want to have enough information as I can.



  3. #13
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    Since 20L is 30" long, I do agree with extra PH. I even had 2-3 PH with 1 x HOB FOWLR set up filled way overstocked than normal with locally caught tropicals; filefish, butterfly, dottyback/wrasse, lawn mower, flying gurnard, juvie grouper, flounders, puffers, clams, mussels, etc, etc, etc. Ran PS part time only.

    I would not swap the filter at this point.



  4. #14
    Moderator greech's Avatar
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    A good PH for the money are Koralia Evolutions. . One 750 would do fine for now but 2 (or maybe 1 750 and a nano version) would give you more random flow. Two 750s might be too much but I doubt it. Later down the road these can be hooked up to a wave timer if you like. If money is no object go with tunze nanostream (6025) or a Vortech MP-10.



  5. #15
    Member sacrificetheory's Avatar
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    Sounds good! I'm searching around right now for the best deals. What do you guys think of these? You can't beat the price! http://stores.ebay.com/purewaterclub...0&_sc=1&_sop=1



  6. #16
    Moderator greech's Avatar
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    I don't know anything about those. Never heard of them. Yes the price is good but I might be concerned about the quality of the filters and how the whole thing will hold up. Google them and see if you can find any feedback. Not trying to sell you on BRS units but they are very well made and they use high quality filters. Their customer service is very good as well. Kent also make some good units.

    You don't need a big filter. A 25 to 50 gpd will work for your size tank.



  7. #17
    Member sacrificetheory's Avatar
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    There's a Kent unit up for auction, starting bid is 9 bucks. It's about 8 years old, though. I'll link you to the auction.
    Quick question, can I hook up any unit to the faucet or do certain ones require there own dedicated plumbing? Probably a dumb question. Sorry.



  8. #18
    Member sacrificetheory's Avatar
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    http://cgi.ebay.com/Kent-Marine-Delu...item19c0a6a724

    Sorry about that! I forgot the link.



  9. #19
    Moderator greech's Avatar
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    Those are fairly popular and still made today so finding parts (if you were to need them) should not be a problem. At 8 years, that membarance is probably dried out so you may need a new one and that will run you about $100 if you buy the Kent membrane. You will also need the other cartridges that will set you back $25 to $40 each. Not sure how many gpd that unit does. Brand new those units are around $250+.



  10. #20
    Member sacrificetheory's Avatar
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    Hmmm. I googled the ones on ebay. I haven't found a bad word yet. But of course, nobody has really had them any length of time.
    I really really appreciate the help from you guys. Any more recommendations or advice would be very welcome.



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