Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Rockland County, NY
Hi Silent ,
join the club
Anyone that tells you a planted tank isn't cheap HAS NOT HAD A REEF DONE THE RIGHT WAY. COMPARATIVLEY SPEAKING.
I just converted my 250 reef to a planted tank about a year ago. WAY CHEAPER.
I had dual 250 MH + 6*96 watt pc on the reef. I lost the MH's and just kept the PC's. I suggest you do the same. The only thing you will have to do is change the VHO tubes from actinic to a noce combo of 5000k, 6700k, 8800k, and maybe a 10000k for a nice visual. The 10000k is for your eyes not the plants. If you just have the others the tank will appear yellow.
You can disconnect the Protien skimmer( there is a waste of 700 bucks) and the UV sterilizer is 100% optional, no harm no foul. No Calc reactor. Remove the bio balls from the wet dry and try to have the water cycle with no splash. I did that instead of buying a Fluval wich is the better can. filter from what I hear. I also had my tank "reef ready" so the overflow was built in.
I have 3 inches of flourite and no sand on top. Seems like the sand will eventually settle to the bottom anyway, especially when moving plants around and planting in the begining.