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Mike's First budget tank 4 foot- newbie

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Mike's First budget tank 4 foot- newbie

Postby iron man » Tue 28 Oct, 2008 7:03 am

Hi Everyone:
This is my first marine tank, so I thanks ahead for any advise/tips given. As I am only very new to this hobby, will sure ask a lot of stupid quesiton.

I started planning all this about 3 months back, when one of my mate is decided he no longer needed the fish and the live rock. It took me a while as I was brave/stupid enough to build my own fish tank stand first (in a unit)instead of buying it after reading quite a few post on forum.

Only got two clown at moment which was given to me , there is also a yellow tang, however he died at my mate's place before I could return from oversea and move him over.

I am planning to add more fish as I go , but at moment just taking it slow for now. (any suggestion welcome?)

Will put in coral once I am confident enough on what I am doing. (may be in a month or two)
As I am very busy normally, so after some low maintance coral /fish in the future.

So here we go: :devil:

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I got used 2'' and 4'' pine from bunning. total cost me about $100 when finished ( I am on a budget thanks to the stock market)

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Just got a standard 4 foot tank with buildin weir.


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Sump just a standard 2 foot tank for the moment
Skimmer using Reef Octopus Vento 6520 $199
return pump $100 - 1900L /Hr
Heater - 200w $79

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Coming together as I go
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Almost done
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finally finished, but had to return the tank for a one with weir in it.


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Using a standard Aqua Nova T5 at moment -

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two clown
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Last edited by iron man on Fri 05 Dec, 2008 7:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby triplesided » Tue 28 Oct, 2008 11:11 am

Looking good so far :thumbsup:

You may look at upgrading your return pump as 1900L/H is a bit low for a 4" tank.

There is a section for Tank Journals, Start one up!

:cheers:
Cheers
Chris
[url=http://www.masa.asn.au/phpBB3/viewtopic.php?t=189999]The old 8x2x1.5[/url]
[url=http://www.masa.asn.au/phpBB3/viewtopic.php?t=194360]The new and improved 2' cube[/url]
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Postby Corona » Tue 28 Oct, 2008 1:59 pm

Looking good ironman.
Is there a standpipe in that weir? Looks like it just drains straight into bulkeads or something at the bottom or could be just can't see in that picture? How quiet is it?

All the reading you can do on this site will pay off so my only advise is not to rush into anything. Like not getting the weir in the first tank, there maybe other things you haven't considered yet??

Good luck :clap:
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Postby kurt » Tue 28 Oct, 2008 2:22 pm

looks good - doesnt look like there is any stand pipes few pics down you can see the water running down the weir :o poor clowns must have a headache :poke:
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Postby iron man » Tue 28 Oct, 2008 8:01 pm

Thanks Guys

Questions
1. What size return pump should I upgrade to ? My tank is only about 200 litter.

2. Can any one explain to me what is a Standpipe ? Is it for noise reduction ? If so, Can I still install one?Where Can I buy stand pipe?

3. I got a lots of bubble coming back out from the sump, as I don't have a bubble divider in the sump (was rushing) Is this going to be a problem down the track?

Cheers

Mike
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Postby Corona » Wed 29 Oct, 2008 12:06 am

iron man wrote:Thanks Guys

Questions
1. What size return pump should I upgrade to ? My tank is only about 200 litter.

2. Can any one explain to me what is a Standpipe ? Is it for noise reduction ? If so, Can I still install one?Where Can I buy stand pipe?

3. I got a lots of bubble coming back out from the sump, as I don't have a bubble divider in the sump (was rushing) Is this going to be a problem down the track?


Cheers

Mike


Mike I'm starting out again myself so I may be slightly off the mark and someone should correct me if I'm wrong, but...

1) Is your tank really only 200litres? Even if it is narrower than standard say 4x1.5x2 feet it would be 300litres. The picks suggest it is narrow and not 2 feet?? I think the rule of thumb is about 5 times your total volume every hour (it's either 3 to 5 or 5 to 7??), working on 300 litres your existing pump is about right.

2) A standpipe serves a few purposes and one is definitely to reduce noise. Try the reefpedia section for pics and all the details. Basically if you have 2 holes drilled in your tank you can run a full syphon and a standpipe. When set-up right, they'll bring the water level up in your weir so there's less splash (noise), reduce the gurgling sound through the pipework AND eliminate bubbles at the other end in your sump.

3) see above :thumbsup:

bubbles popping everywhere worsens the amount of salt creep which long term can be a big hassle if you don't constantly wipe. Plus if the bubbles make there way back to your display they reduce clarity of the water.

I hope I have remembered my research correctly....someone please correct me if I'm wrong :wavey:

Goodluck but Mike, take a bit more time and don't be in too big a hurry. You want to get it as right as you can first time or you may end up frustrated with something that just doesn't work. I tolerated a poorly thought out tank for 5 years and nearly gave up the hobby until finding this site and seeing where I went wrong. :cheers:
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Postby kurt » Wed 29 Oct, 2008 12:15 am

Plenty of threads and TJ's that show different setups, worth taking a look around to get some idea's.

No right or wrong setups in this game just better ways.
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Postby iron man » Wed 29 Oct, 2008 5:36 am

Thanks guys
Mike ~_~
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Postby iron man » Sun 09 Nov, 2008 5:55 pm

Hi guys:
Just did some rock work, so that now I have two islands which will give the fish a bit more space to move around - hopefully, and clowns will fight a litte bit less - wishful thinking I know... :thumbsup:

However I notice when I move my live rock, there lots of dust like stuff falling off the live rock. I think they are just live rock dust but I am not 100% sure.

As the tank now has got a dust storm, hopefully it will settle down shortly.
The clowns doesn't seem to been effected at this stage.

If anyone has done the same thing before please let me know if this is normal.

New left side
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New right side
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New whole tank shot
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Whole tank shot
Thanks
Mike ~_~
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Postby iron man » Sun 09 Nov, 2008 6:14 pm

Good news, after i put a small piece of filter foem into the weir, the bubble & noise basicly stopped.

Bad news, now I realise my tank is too small for all the tang I want to put in, I was orginally planing for one decent size lipstick tang & a blue tang, and may be a yellow tang.
Now after some reading I realise the first two are out (unless I upgrade to a bigger 4 foot). damn.

I am thinking may be getting 3 small tang for now , and may be upgrade to a bigger tank , after we move in 12 month time.

how fast do lipstick and blue tang grow ? do u guys know ?
I know yellow tang doesn't grow too big.
Mike ~_~
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Postby tomorrows_angel » Sun 09 Nov, 2008 7:39 pm

iron man wrote:how fast do lipstick and blue tang grow ? do u guys know ?
I know yellow tang doesn't grow too big.


Well that rather depends on the tank they're in, how much and what they're fed etc.

As an example, I bought 2 tiny blue tangs (only 1 inch long each) about a month ago. They have almost doubled in size. However, their little buddy in the shop (there were 3 of them originally) is still the same size as when I first got them.
Kathryn :)
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Postby MFX » Sun 09 Nov, 2008 8:38 pm

Fish generally will only grow to the size of the tank. So you should be fine. I had about a 15cm Blue Tang in my old 2ft Cube for about a year and it was fine.

Jeff.
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Postby kuhni » Sun 09 Nov, 2008 11:49 pm

Take Cover!
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Postby deano_cvon_1989 » Mon 10 Nov, 2008 12:10 am

hahaha

fish grow to the size of the tank...15cm blue tang in 2ft cube

definately take cover!
trying to replicate my little nor-west reef...well something similar for now...
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Postby MFX » Mon 10 Nov, 2008 12:19 am

Lol, it was 15cm when I got it and it didn't noticeably grow over the year :thumbsup:

Jeff.
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Postby deano_cvon_1989 » Mon 10 Nov, 2008 12:20 am

what happened to it?
trying to replicate my little nor-west reef...well something similar for now...
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Postby MFX » Mon 10 Nov, 2008 12:23 am

I introduced a new fish, before going on holidays, and it infected the entire tank and by the time I got home (guys looking after it were hopeless) I lost my entire tank :(

Jeff.
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Postby deano_cvon_1989 » Mon 10 Nov, 2008 12:28 am

well thats sh't
trying to replicate my little nor-west reef...well something similar for now...
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Postby Rhys123 » Mon 10 Nov, 2008 12:39 am

MFX wrote:Fish generally will only grow to the size of the tank. So you should be fine. I had about a 15cm Blue Tang in my old 2ft Cube for about a year and it was fine.

Jeff.


Jeff

As you have probaly gathered by the not so subtle hinting that this statement and piece of advice is incorrect.

Freshwater fish I believe have the ability to limit their growth to the size of their water source no doubt this is an evolutionary trait to cope with diminishing water sources IE Lakes increasing and decreasing with the seasons

Saltwater fish on the other hand have not been readily exposed to their water sources diminishing in size on a seasonal basis or through drought etc so they will keep growing in size until they ultimately out grow the tank.

The part of about keeping a 15cm tang in a 2 foot aquarium (and I am definitely no tang lover) will draw (well maybe) howls of criticism as tangs are fish that if research is done will show need plenty of swimming space. The general consensus among the many tang lover (which I as expressed earlier I am not one) is that they should not be housed in anything under a 6 foot tank (I am sure a dedicated tang lover will correct me if I am wrong)

Steve
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Postby MFX » Mon 10 Nov, 2008 8:00 am

Rhys123 wrote:Jeff

As you have probaly gathered by the not so subtle hinting that this statement and piece of advice is incorrect.

Freshwater fish I believe have the ability to limit their growth to the size of their water source no doubt this is an evolutionary trait to cope with diminishing water sources IE Lakes increasing and decreasing with the seasons

Saltwater fish on the other hand have not been readily exposed to their water sources diminishing in size on a seasonal basis or through drought etc so they will keep growing in size until they ultimately out grow the tank.

The part of about keeping a 15cm tang in a 2 foot aquarium (and I am definitely no tang lover) will draw (well maybe) howls of criticism as tangs are fish that if research is done will show need plenty of swimming space. The general consensus among the many tang lover (which I as expressed earlier I am not one) is that they should not be housed in anything under a 6 foot tank (I am sure a dedicated tang lover will correct me if I am wrong)

Steve


That is interesting. I got a lot of info from a friend who worked in an Aquarium for years with mostly fresh water. The more I learn, the more I realise they are less of an expert than they think they are :konk:

Is it more of an ethical thing, not having tangs in a smaller tank? I hadn't heard that before, but I used to have fish only, and no LFS I ever asked the size of my tank before selling me a tang.... :furious:

I had a yellow tang in that tank as well, and they were always happy and healthy, until the tanks demise....

Jeff.
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Postby iron man » Tue 11 Nov, 2008 3:51 am

good to see what everyone else has been doing?

Steve, I hear what u saying, I am bit hesitant at moment as well about puting tang in the tank.

If I see some really small blue tang in the LFS I might consider.
Again going up to 6 foot would be ideal, however I like to know what I am doing with 4 foot first before upgrading, as I am still very new to all this .
Mike ~_~
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Postby kurt » Sun 16 Nov, 2008 8:27 pm

Looking good so far mate.

Keep in mind juvenile tangs dont stay small for long :cheers:
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Postby spanishmack » Sun 16 Nov, 2008 8:39 pm

some zebrasoma species tangs will be fine in a 4ft tank, yellow tangs being one of them. blue tangs even when small aren't a good idea, genreally blue tangs stress easily in small tanks <6ft and are whitespot magnets
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Postby iron man » Wed 19 Nov, 2008 5:54 pm

I hear what u saying spanishmack, too bad I bought three tang on "impluse buying" - bad bad. I am looking at upgrading to at least a 6 foot very soon,
Mike ~_~
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Postby Tommo » Wed 19 Nov, 2008 6:02 pm

looking good mate :)
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Postby incomplet » Wed 19 Nov, 2008 9:28 pm

good job so far =)
i've got a 4 foot as well running on a canister
yeh painful.
but i just started my 3 foot tank with sump =)
its going swimmingly
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Postby iron man » Tue 25 Nov, 2008 3:30 am

still hang in there, the powder blue tang is getting more use to my tank now, and start to eat some food.

My clown still don't hang out with the tangs and prefer to keep them self at the right side of the tank.
Valminglii and blue tang is ok now , still fight a bit, but not real demage down so far.
Mike ~_~
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Postby deano_cvon_1989 » Tue 25 Nov, 2008 11:57 am

Take cover...the tang police will be knocking soon!
trying to replicate my little nor-west reef...well something similar for now...
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Postby iron man » Sun 30 Nov, 2008 12:48 pm

got some marine green from LFS , PBT still not a big fan, but at least now are eating more sea wead than before, he still doesn't come out and fight for food like less of the crowd. (blue and valminglii eats like a pig at moment)

Now sure if I should get a DSB and grow some more algae for him. (talking about high diet requirement -:)

Getting some power head soon, hopefully interested water flow will help.
Mike ~_~
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Postby iron man » Wed 03 Dec, 2008 9:34 pm

some updated pics,

bought some new tang for the tank, need a bigger tank soon I guess

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bought a blenny few days back , he disppeared after few days, (dead) don't know what happened, :furious: I hope one of the fish didn't kill him.

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full tank shoot
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This two eat like a pig at moment


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He is the new boss of the tank (I hope)
Last edited by iron man on Wed 03 Dec, 2008 10:36 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Mike ~_~
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