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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 10-28-2007, 06:04 AM Thread Starter
 
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new tank

hi, I did kind of start a planted tank about a year or so ago and it was hijacked by an impulse buy (juvie long fin oscar needed to grow out before going to the monster tank)

now I am planning on starting fresh and I am looking for advice.

I am going to tear down my reef tank, water changes and what not have become a pain, and a crash causing me to loose 80% of my sps (hard corals).

so I have a 46 gallon tank, with 175watt metal halide and 2x 39watt t5 lighting. the bulbs are 14,000k and 10,000k.

the filtration is a sump that will have its wet/dry componets put back into play.

I also have a Red Sea CO2 kit.


now what should I do for on the filter, substrate, how limited on plants with the lighting.

I'm an open book with empty pages
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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 10-28-2007, 06:20 AM Thread Starter
 
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the lighting






the reef when it was still healthy

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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 10-28-2007, 07:16 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by evil_monkey View Post
hi, I did kind of start a planted tank about a year or so ago and it was hijacked by an impulse buy (juvie long fin oscar needed to grow out before going to the monster tank)

now I am planning on starting fresh and I am looking for advice.

I am going to tear down my reef tank, water changes and what not have become a pain, and a crash causing me to loose 80% of my sps (hard corals).

so I have a 46 gallon tank, with 175watt metal halide and 2x 39watt t5 lighting. the bulbs are 14,000k and 10,000k.

the filtration is a sump that will have its wet/dry componets put back into play.

I also have a Red Sea CO2 kit.


now what should I do for on the filter, substrate, how limited on plants with the lighting.

I'm an open book with empty pages
175W + 2x39W will be too much light on a 46 gallon tank. Well, at first. It's "manageable" but I wouldn't recommend it. Try running just the 2x39W now and that should be enough light for you to start out with. If you really want to run the whole shebang, I'd run 2x39W for most of the day with a burst period of 2-3 hours with the 175W MH running too. Is the MH DE or SE? Most likely SE. You can find any 175W 6500K-10KK bulb to run for this purpose. You should switch out all the 14K bulbs to at most 10K which is more suited for plant growth.

With regards to the sump setup, you'll need to minimize surface agitation caused my water movement to prevent outgassing of the dissolved CO2. That, or just increase the injection rate.

For CO2 injection, you can either go with a diffuser or a reactor. Personally, I like the look of a diffuser and the bubbles coming up from it, but I also like the efficiency of a reactor, so I have both. =p It'll be up to you though. You have the CO2 cylinder + regulator already. Now all you'll need is either a diffuser or a reactor.

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Originally Posted by evil_monkey View Post
the lighting






the reef when it was still healthy



Good looking reef.
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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 10-28-2007, 06:19 PM Thread Starter
 
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thanks, I have both 10,000k and 14,000k on the metal halide, I think I can get the 6,500k at Lowes for less than $20.



what about substrate, I have heard of SMS, but am having trouble getting/finding it here.
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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 10-28-2007, 10:17 PM
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Buy Eco-Complete for the substrate. The other popular option is Aquasoil (ADA). Do a search for "eco vs Ada or Eco vs aquasoil" and read up.

Check out thead on starting a tank w/ no water here on this main general discussions page if you aren't in a rush.

Otherwise, buy a LOT LOT LOT of plants INCLUDING STEM PLANTS when you first start the tank (don't think 3-4 plants is "HEAVY" planted!) to try to fight off the inevitable algae problems that accompany a new tank during the first few months. Keep your CO2 steady. Buy some DRY FERTS from Rex. Do EI (estimative index, do a search, means weekly water changes, no testing, dry ferts and micro ferts 3x/weekly each, its the simplest method to do high-tech tanks).

And yah, using ALL of that lighting will just encourage algae in the first few months when your plants aren't ready to out-compete the algae for the nutrients. Remember, high-lighting leaves less room for mistakes in BALANCING plant load=fish load=nutrients/fertilizers=CO2=Lights. Growing a healthy plant tank is getting those 5 items to "balance" with each other...higher light makes the equation harder to balance...losing the balance, means algae. Sure, some folks can do high-light w/ no algae, some folks can eat entire planes and cars too, but lower light is easier to manage.

NOTE: To do a *SEARCH* and get the answer you want, its often best to go to "Advanced Search" and search in the title only.
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