Nano Reef for Beginners??

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Nano Reef for Beginners??

Postby Tirtha » Sun Feb 22, 2015 8:39 pm

After keeping freshwater planted/ non planted tank for almost 10 years, I was thinking about the idea to explore the salty side too. The first thing strike me is, a Nano reef tank (26G to be specific) of 24x16x16 size. Is it possible to start with this size reef as a beginner??

What all the things I should keep in mind before I start?
What all the equipments I would be needing to keep it safe anf healthy?
What budget should I be looking at?
Keeping a same size sump to the tank is. Good idea?
Any good thread can you redirect me to read up the basics?
Regards,
Tirtha

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Re: Nano Reef for Beginners??

Postby el batty » Mon Feb 23, 2015 4:29 am

Avoid reef for the first year...marine is quite different from planted..it will take you approx one season to get the hang of it..after that you can add some corals.

You wont be able to resist fishes eventually and you'd need a bigger tank. 30-18-18 is a very good starting size.

Get uncured live rock and live sand. Cure it for approx 20 days then introduce fishes.

Once you have an overall grasp on saltwater chemistry you can introduce button polyps and mushrooms (provided you can keep the temp below 28).

Equipment wise you can buy those small skimmers which turn out okay for small tanks.

Test kits are kinda very important in marine setups.
No2 nh3 and ph will serve your cause while ypu deal with fowlr.

Keep bioload low..3 fish max and dont overfeed that'd keep your nitrate in check.

Sump of 2-1-1 is more than enough.
In kolkata...a starting budget of 6k would be sufficient for a tank of your dimension...dunno price difference over there.
Regards,
Subhadeep

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Re: Nano Reef for Beginners??

Postby xarg0n » Mon Feb 23, 2015 9:24 am

I guess a small tank as per your dimention is perfectly fine. Beacuse you are quite experienced hobbyist. Though smaller new marine tanks show a lot of parameter swings lot faster, but thats the challenge which I guess makes salties more interesting. Though a new tank as reef could be quite an effortsome deal but not impossible to deploy. You must have all the necessary infrastructure installed and ensured working fine. I generally do not use a pH kit, because it is unnecessary imo. Rather having invested in a good kH kit is better. Natural Reefs generally have a kH range from 7-11dkH and you need to be on the higher side if having sps, mid range is better with lps and low range with fish only. Though fish do not require this range to survive at all, with a higher kH you can get rid of cyano bacteria etc in the tank. Also NH4 and NO2 is 10 times more toxic for each dkH level than the previous, so your bio filtration should be the very best you can built. I personally have a diy intank wet-dry trickle, you can do it in the sump as well.

Kits like NO2 , NO3 , PO4, kH, Ca are normally required to run a reef in EI method, only thing is you dont and cant do the wc weekly like planted :) . NH4 kit is something you can invest in, but it is only useful for first one week. Normally in fresh and marine a distinct sharp fishy smell denotes a NH4 outbreak, and you can smell it if standing close enough to the tank with pumps doing some surface agitation. NH4 to NO2 convertion is quite fast once the bact colony has grown enough , but NO2 to NO3 convertion is a lengthy process and do not introduce any live stock until you get a big bold zero on the kit color chart. Also do not delay adding livestock the moment you read 0, because if there is nothing to feed on for the bacteria colony they will die off. Generally people wait a few days to be absolutely sure, but DO NOT do this. After introducing the fish with the gap the cycle starts again with NH4 and NO2 spike and 70% new marine hobbyists loose their first live stocks.

One important relation between kH and pH is for every 0.5dkH swing (-/+) the pH swings approx 0.3(-/+).

Only for the NO3 kit use Salifert. The rest kits can be any standard brands like sera, tetra, JBL etc.
Thanks & Regards..

Sourav...

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Re: Nano Reef for Beginners??

Postby xarg0n » Mon Feb 23, 2015 9:35 am

Oh and specific gravity meter. 1.023 @ 25*C for fish only, 1.025@ 25*C for reef is ideal.
Thanks & Regards..

Sourav...

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Re: Nano Reef for Beginners??

Postby arnab » Mon Feb 23, 2015 10:27 am

I am maintaining an one feet cube for last 6 months. I would say it is a success.

honestly I dont spend much time in checking proper parameters, once the tank was settled everything came into place. Yes I check nitrate levels sometimes, but with low bioload and very little feeding it helps.

I have had an anemone (carrot), clown and damsel. I have a HOB and a power head and few LEDs. I do 50% WC evry month.

What I have learnt is less experiement you do your tank remains ok more.
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Re: Nano Reef for Beginners??

Postby Dipankar » Mon Feb 23, 2015 11:28 am

arnab wrote:I am maintaining an one feet cube for last 6 months. I would say it is a success.

honestly I dont spend much time in checking proper parameters, once the tank was settled everything came into place. Yes I check nitrate levels sometimes, but with low bioload and very little feeding it helps.

I have had an anemone (carrot), clown and damsel. I have a HOB and a power head and few LEDs. I do 50% WC evry month.

What I have learnt is less experiement you do your tank remains ok more.


Need detail insight about your I' cube it will help everyone with low budget
Sorry Tirtha for putting my interest in your thread
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Re: Nano Reef for Beginners??

Postby bunty123 » Mon Feb 23, 2015 6:32 pm

Hey dada,even my 50 litre tank turned 1 year....ya i must say that small water changs a mont is all that it needs once the tank has setteled.Firstly i had faced many problems but thanks to kac members for helping me out.Now i house an anemone,a brain coral n a damsel.Ya do choose the best light possible cause it took me a lot of time to settle down on narva tubes finally!
Regards from Abhirup Bandopadhyay
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Re: Nano Reef for Beginners??

Postby Tirtha » Mon Feb 23, 2015 7:53 pm

Thanks a lot everyone for your inputs. Really helpful for a beginner like me.

Now let me rephrase my question. 26G tank with a sump of another 26G will add up almost 40G water folumn. Do you still think, this will qualify as a nano reef tank size?

Second question, if I use Mh for this tank, which wattage and kelvine rating I should look for?
Regards,
Tirtha

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Re: Nano Reef for Beginners??

Postby xarg0n » Mon Feb 23, 2015 8:51 pm

Tirtha da, The DT tank is only referred imo as nano, though technically it will have much more water volume than a nano. But most of the people dont see under the table.
Look and feel of nano while actually having more water volume is definitely a plus.

If you use mh then look out for 70 watts fixtures, one of these should do fine. Kelvin rating of 12-14000 should be ideal. But also for mH the lamp should be changed every six months
else corals will turn brown due to high UV charges. Also, try to use a lamp which is single ended mogul based, they tend to have less UV radiation than double ended ones.
Thanks & Regards..

Sourav...

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Re: Nano Reef for Beginners??

Postby Tirtha » Mon Feb 23, 2015 9:48 pm

xarg0n wrote:Tirtha da, The DT tank is only referred imo as nano, though technically it will have much more water volume than a nano. But most of the people dont see under the table.
Look and feel of nano while actually having more water volume is definitely a plus.

If you use mh then look out for 70 watts fixtures, one of these should do fine. Kelvin rating of 12-14000 should be ideal. But also for mH the lamp should be changed every six months
else corals will turn brown due to high UV charges. Also, try to use a lamp which is single ended mogul based, they tend to have less UV radiation than double ended ones.


Perfect. I was looking for this answer. 70watt Mh can be managed easily. Already I have one fixture ready. Just have to get the bulb. ;)

But 70watt for 26G. Will it be enough?? Dont we need 5WPG to grow corals?? :p sourav, you have to tolerate me for a while now with all these dumb questions. ;;)
Regards,
Tirtha

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