I'm new here, hopefully this is in the right forum. Petco had a sale this weekend, and I ordered a Seaclear 46g acrylic bowfront with a black background and a stand. I'm planning to let my three kids each pick a fancy goldfish for it. Those should be arriving within the next week or so along with Erik Johnson's book, and in the meantime, I'm thinking about how to best outfit it and had some questions I'm working through waiting for the tank, cycling it, etc.
Filter: I grew up with Eheims, and will go with one or two canisters. I get the 10x gph recommendation. With a 46g, that's 460 gph filtration, which is either a monster filter or I have to come up with two or more filtration devices. Since I want clean lines (or at least my wife does), I'm leaning towards avoiding a HOB and going with two canisters. Would two Eheim 2217s be overkill? Each is 264gph. Seems like it might be better to get two smaller canisters for insurance in case one goes down than get a big one which will end up being more than the cost of two 2217s. I'm happy to spend the money for quality when it comes to something as important as filtration.
Light: I need to do a little more research on this, but I understand the light that comes with the Seaclear tank is worthless. I was thinking about going LEDs, and probably one that would support plants. If anyone has a 46g bowfront (or any other 36" wide tank) with an LED light recommendation, I'd love to hear it.
Decor: As I mentioned, I bought a tank with a black background. I think I want to go sand rather than bare bottomed, as I remember my goldfish growing up seeming to have fun sifting through the substrate. I'm thinking a relatively bare tank, with sand, some big river rocks, and a few natural plants. I saw the various recommendations on the CaribSea products. Not sure if I would go with Tahitian moon sand, as it would be a very dark tank but pretty cool effect. I also was looking at moonlight sand, torpedo beach and sunset gold. If anyone has a tank with a black background and any of those sands, I would love to see pictures and get any advice/thoughts/experience.
Fish: So one of my daughters is obsessed with the color blue, and the first thing she said was she wanted a blue goldfish. I saw that there are blue orandas (I might have had one actually now that I think about it when I was little). Any good recommendations on where to look for one? I'm assuming my LFS won't have them in stock. I'm thinking of starting the girls off with small fish in the 1-2" range, so any recommendations for suppliers with small fish would be great.
I figure I have a good 3-4 weeks before the tank comes, is assembled and cycled, but just want to think through the various items in the meantime. Thanks so much in advance, I really appreciate it!