Is the window screen something that can be attached to a fugeray instead of covering the tank?
Yes, supposedly there is no difference. By some weird chance I happened to have a window screen in a wood frame that almost perfectly fits the top of my tank so I just set it on the tank (it leaves a few inches of space between the top of the water and the screen). But I've been considering growing emersed plants, so I'm pondering how I can put the screen at the light. I have a plexiglass piece that covers the lights so I've been considering putting the screen along with the plexiglass.
Tylt33: I'd totally go the STS route, but I've really fallen for the black substrate look. I considered using Black Diamond blasting grit, but those fine needles aren't all that appealing to me. I'm going to start looking in to MTS or at least MGOPS. Do you have the Ray2 or a Fugeray, and are you using c02? And is a RO/DI system DIYable? Good to know about the frequent Fluval sales, too! I think they were that price for Black Friday. I only started researching equipment prices just after Thanksgiving, so I'm not familiar with what's a good holiday deal
I have the Fugeray, and I don't use co2. Floating plants can often be had for free from the RAOK section here. RO//DI units are an investment up front, but totally worth it in the long run IMO.
Just purchased the Eheim 2217 (for $113) and a 200w Hydor in-line heater (for only $36) from Big Al's with their Christmas pricing and a 10% coupon! I figured the 2217 was only a few dollars more than the Petco Fluval 306 deal, but I wouldn't have to mess around with new hosing or adapters to hook up the heater to the 306.