My tank - starting from scratch

chrono_war01

Colossal Squid
Supporter
#1
So, now that I've moved to all smaller house. I plan to start from scratch! So, my first question is:

I have approx 2 cm of coarse sand, do I need more for a octo?
Or do I need to dumop the sand get some some finer types of sand?
 

chrono_war01

Colossal Squid
Supporter
#4
Okay, once again, after a 5 hour cleaning up job, taking up my entire Saturday and my friend's time. :/ My tank now has a clean slate.

So, my tank is a 19inchs x 8 inchs wide and 28 inchs deep. Not a lot, but that's all I could afford. I have a Eclipse for my filter (active carbon and a spinny wheel that's supposed to have some sort of bacteria)

Whatever sand that I had, I threw away since it smelled so bad. So I can start over. The thing that worrroes me the most is whether or not the Eclipse moter head and filer would be enough (I also have a 2nd hand skimmer somewhere) As you can see, I have forgetten the basics since I obviously learned it from a 2-bit heartless LFS that doesn't care as long as it profits. I would also like to enquire what type of sand I would need to get for a tank that is octo friendly.
 

cuttlegirl

Colossal Squid
Supporter
Registered
#5
Hi Eric,

Good luck! Find the skimmer, and get some live rock. You may have to do lots of water changes to keep the waste under control, you will just have to pay attention to the nitrate, nitrite and ammonia levels.
 

chrono_war01

Colossal Squid
Supporter
#6
Well, considering that my sea water comes from a very direct source, I think the nitrate, nitrite and ammonia levels are going to be pretty low (Did a few general water tests, everything seems normal)

I am worried that the Powerhead (not sure is it called a that, it's the moter that sucks in water to the filter) is strong enough though. It seems rather weakish for a tank.

And if I have a skimmer, a filter and such, do I need to have a extra source to oxygenate the water with a air pump or something?
 

cuttlegirl

Colossal Squid
Supporter
Registered
#7
chrono_war01;90026 said:
Well, considering that my sea water comes from a very direct source, I think the nitrate, nitrite and ammonia levels are going to be pretty low (Did a few general water tests, everything seems normal)
I meant you need to watch the water parameters once you have animals in the tank. Then the nitrates, nitrites and ammonia will go up. As long as you do water changes, you should be able to keep it under control.
 

sorseress

Colossal Squid
Supporter
#9
Chrono, It's good to see you back. I'm assuming the reason you haven't been posting is that you've been studying so hard. :read:
 

chrono_war01

Colossal Squid
Supporter
#10
More like becuase I couldn't contribue to the recent discussions going on. ...and studying.

Yes, I have a small tank, and I have no idea what I could keep in it, small reef fish?
The only sucess I've had with keeping anything alive for more than a week were 3 live prawns and a clam. :/

Now..back to studying.
 

sorseress

Colossal Squid
Supporter
#11
It's a drag, I know, but later on you will be soooo glad you're being so diligent now.
 
#12
Uhm...

can I say, "lol"?

Sorry...it just seems startling that someone will be able to successfully provide a home for reef fish in a 20 gallon.

I had a 20 gallon and I had to move my poor damsels into it. I was only able to house 3 fish and a bunch of fiddlers because of the waste the fish produce. If you get a decent skimmer, maybe you won't have a problem. My 20 gallon skimmer was rated for 35-40 gallons max.

I did frequent water changes and checked the PH and nitrates/nitrites. The Damsel didn't have enough room to swim, so I thought it was kind of cruel at first.

Even fish belong in a bigger aquarium than a 10-20 gallon.

Damsels are cheap and really good for tester fish to check everything out in your aquarium.

I used just gravel rock in my first aquarium--that way, you were able to see the waste better. I was only able to put in a few live rock.
 

team2jnd

Pygmy Octopus
Registered
#13
I know many many people who keep fish in tanks all the way down to 5 gallons. I kept several fish in a ten gallon for several months while I cycled my 55. IT is very doable.
 

chrono_war01

Colossal Squid
Supporter
#14
Okay, I have failed to find my protein skimmer, it might have gotten lost or it has developed legs and walked off in search of a mate. I don't know. All I know is that it's not there.

And my dad thinks that I should try keeping freshwater things first, instead of skipping to saltwater? Suggestions/Ideas/Comments on keeping freshwater fish to start out/learn the basics would be appreciated.

Oh, and 19inchs x 8 inchs wide and 28 inchs deep in gallons? I've put it through a calculater and it doesn't seem to be showing anything correlating with my hypothesis on the size of the darn thing.
 

Tintenfisch

Architeuthis
Staff member
Moderator
#15
I come up with about 15 gallons (14.7), if there are 4.5 litres per gallon (though I've heard two different conversion figures - I guess there are two different 'gallons' - one is 4.5, one is 3.7 litres?)...
 

Jean

Colossal Squid
Supporter
#16
Tintenfisch;92407 said:
I come up with about 15 gallons (14.7), if there are 4.5 litres per gallon (though I've heard two different conversion figures - I guess there are two different 'gallons' - one is 4.5, one is 3.7 litres?)...

Yup US Gallons and UK Gallons are different!

J
 

DWhatley

Cthulhu
Staff member
Moderator
#17
chrono_war,
Your dad won't like my thinking but ...

I don't believe you will learn much about saltwater fish/reef keeping by setting up your tank for freshwater. If you enjoy freshwater fish or just fish in general, you will like this kind of setup but the differences are extensive. Even if your dad thinks you need to learn about the daily routine of keeping a tank, the amount of work required for saltwater is 10 times more (and far more critical) than for freshwater.

You might want to start by looking at a couple of nano forums to see what beginner critters attract you and not try to keep something exotic until you have experience. Beginner (read hardy and low cost) critters don't have to be boring. Live rock, sand, interesting cleanup, a couple of softies and a pair of jaw fish make a really interesting small tank. There are a number of options depending upon your tastes and how much time/money (particularly for feeding) you have to put into the project. Saltwater tanks are, however, a daily concern and require at least freshwater top off every 24 hours and water changes weekly for the smaller tanks. If your time does not allow daily attention, then a freshwater tank is more forgiving but you will learn very little about reef keeping.
 

chrono_war01

Colossal Squid
Supporter
#18
good, because my dad just had a colleague say the exact same thing to him. Saltwater and freshwater don't match. Anywho, the tank is going nicely, I have built a list of what to buy. But what type of sandbed do I want if I want to keep a cuttle? I was thinking of a deep sandbed, but I have no idea what to do with such a small tank except for keeping juvnile cuttles and then releasing them back to sea.
 

shipposhack

Haliphron Atlanticus
Registered
#19
A few years back, I kept a 10g fresh as my first tank because I wanted a spotted green puffer. I wouldn't say I learned a ton, but I did learn a lot about how water quality is important, the nitrification process, and how some fish don't mix (puffers and guppies :roll:). So I wouldn't say keeping a fresh will teach you nothing, but a FOWLR tank may be better if you are looking into a ceph or some other type of salty critter.
 

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