View Full Version : Im thinking SW Aquarium What Do I Need?

08-11-2012, 11:32 AM
My experience in keeping fish is very limited.

I went to several LFS and they told me all I needed was an aquarium witrh a trikel filter. Sand and rock. Im not sure if the sand and rock they have is live sand and rock or where it came from? But if I had to guess the Thai Sea.

They get there salt water from the Thai Sea.

I would purchase marine salt and do a mix. Rock and sand.

The water at my tap is PH 8.0 to 8.5

Would I need an R/O unit to filter the water?

I have a 35 gallon water storage tank I could pre mix the salt and water.

I have a 24 inch long x 24 inch tall x 12 inch wide aquarium with a trikel filter built in the corner of the aquarium. The filter fits diagnoly across the corner of the aquarium x 24 inches tall. The pump is in the bottom of the trikel filter.

The water temps with out a heater would stay between 27c to 30c depending on room tempretures.

The canopy holds one flourecent tube and air pump.

The stand is all open on the front and no place to put any additional equipment.

What other equipment would I need to make it a SW aquarium or is this a very bad idea?

For fish I was thinking of stocking it with

Clown fish, Fox Face or Raccoon Butterfly Fish.

Please make some recomendations for equipment, substrate, rock and fish. How many fish, medications I would need prior to purchasding the fish?

If this is a bad idea please say so I do not want to venture into an area and make a huge mistake by making this aquarium a salt water aquarium and killing fish or making there lives miserable.

Maybe it would be better to make it a small community aquarium or cut it up and make a trikel filter out of the aquarium and pitch the stand?


08-11-2012, 02:51 PM
Are you going to keep as a FOWLR or will you eventually add corals? I think at the very minimum for a FOWLR tank your going to need,

-Canister filter
-Live rock(1lbish per gallon)
-Live Sand, I'd go with a shallow bed, just over the bottom trim.
-Powerhead/Circulation pump.
-Decent light (not as crucial if Fish and rock only)
-Test kit including hydrometer
-Either a RO/DI unit or a good source for RO/DI water. Most LFS will selt Salt and fresh RO/DI water. If you want to mix your own salt, either buy a RO/DI unit or buy RO/DI water and mix it. Remember if your going to keep it as a FOWLR you can keep the Salinity down, I keep mine around 1.021.

08-11-2012, 02:56 PM
Also, please do not rush adding fish. It will only cost you money. If you do, add a couple blue green chromis's. Also, are you going to be running a quarantine tank? That butterfly fish will get way too big for a 35g. You'll be fine adding a pair of clowns in there.

08-11-2012, 03:41 PM
Who will taking care of my discus while yu dapple in the darkside of aquatics? :lol:

CrazyEyes asked the one question I had for you and that is will it be a Fowler or reef tank? If reef, you may need to invest in a skimmer as well.

08-13-2012, 03:47 AM
Hey Mega I will continue with the discus: Dable is the truth of it and I hate the dark side that is why I am asking so many dumb questions. Im not so sure I want to do the S/Water for this aquarium I would prefer to get my 45/120 out and do a little bit of target practice on this aquarium how ever I cant stand to see it empty. :lol: 12 inches wide :twisted:

I have been reading that 35 gallon marine aquariums are hard to care for?

Thanks CrayzyEyes

Canister filter is out of the question. I am stuck with the trikel filter because of room. The aquarium is a tight fit. Will the trikel filter be ok for a marine aquarium?

Fowler Tank

I like the Blue Green Chromis.

Same rule applies first fish 20 gallons and second fish is 10 gallons = 2 fish :twisted:?

Is there any other Marine Fish I could put in the aquarium to have more than 2 little fishies :lol:

Is there any other fishies that I could put in the aquarium = lets say 8 little little fishes and easy to care for? what about shrimp, crabs?

35 lbs of live rock
Live sand 1/4 inch deep How many LBS would I need Im guesing 35 lbs?
35 LBS of Live Rock.
1 bucket of Marine Salt. Is there any other additives I would need for the water?
Purchase R/O water for .08 cents per gallon PH 6.5 Cheaper than owning an R/O system and purchasing filters.
35 gallon water storage tank to mix marine salt (Does the storage tank need a power head to agitate the water so the salt does not settle in the bottom of the storage container?
Marine Fish Food?
What size power head would I need for the aquarium to circulate the water?
Water changes every 5 days?

Quarantine tank. Plastic Tote.

Cycle process is it the same for marine tanks compared to fresh water?
Can I use a old filter from a fresh water filter to help start the cycle process?

Have I missed any thing?

08-13-2012, 12:27 PM
A 35 gallon tank can really only support 3 or 4 SW fish. They need very high quality water. Small toby puffers, small wrasses like a Carpenter's flasher or Tanaka pygmy would work too but they are jumpers. Live aquaria has a list of fish for Nano tanks. Any of those would work, anything under a 55 is considered a Nano in the SW community :P

If you're doing a FOWLR then you really don't need anything special. Crazy's list is right on the money for the basics.

08-13-2012, 11:24 PM
Really? Anything under 55g is classified as a nano setup. Interesting.

08-14-2012, 03:30 PM
Yup anything under 55g is a nano anything under ten is a pico and the smaller the harder in most situations
if you don't have room for a canister does that mean you don't have room for a sump? (can be located under tank or anywhere really I've seen then in the basement with 20 feet below tank and even in closets I highly recommend a sump for any sw tank adds water volume which in turn adds more stability and also a great place to put any equipment)
and as for the power head question yes sw fish enjoy lots and lots of flow (corals enjoy/need even more) I use 2 420gph in my 20g
and as for the stock the a 30g tank clowns would be great also look into Bengai cardinals, Grammas, gobies, fire fish(jumpers), some species of wrasses, also sw require a good cuc (clean up crew) various snails, brittle stars, and crabs (may kill snails for their shell) are typically what's used
I would not use any kind of general rule for how many fish you can keep each species is different and need more territory or room to swim hiding spots so on and so on so you would need to research each fish you want to see if it will work (meaning just because a dragonet only gets 4 inches or so doesn't mean you can keep more than one in a 30g easily they require a plentiful supply of pods to eat as most wil not eat frozen food)
as for the filtration you would want a minimum of 1lb of rock per gallon and not solid rock it needs to be really porus with lots of surface area I run about 30lbs of rock in my 20g and it takes up almost the entire back wall As for sand unless you want a burrowing fish or a deep sand bed it's up to you how deep you want it I run just enough to cover the trim on my 20g and a 4-6 inch on my pico which will get a gobie and shrimp combo :) (if you haven't heard of em look em up they have an amazing symbiotic relationship similar to a clown and anenome
for the water mixing station you would want about 5x turnover per hour to mix salt and a heater to match your tanks temp and a hydrometer can work but their not to reliable I would recomend a refractometer when I switched my hydrometer was reading 1.23 and my refractometer showed it being 1.20 so I highly recomend a refractometer especially on a nano
for food you can feed regular fish food but I would highly recommend marine frozen food or making your own food for them (just ask and I can give you recipes)

I Love Living In Japan

08-14-2012, 03:31 PM
And cycling from my experience is nothing like fw IMO best way is to get your tank filled with sw sand and rock (I would recommend putting rock on glass then laying sand bed then filling with water will avoid as much of a chance of an avalanche) then putting a plate or cup on the sand bed and filling with water (cup/plate is to avoid stirring up the sand as much and water will clear up alot sooner) and tossing a peeled deli shrimp from Walmart or somewhere to start the cycle start testing for ammonia and nitrites when you hit your ammonia spike it should go down and your nitrites should go up then nitrites go down and nitrates go up when no more nitrite it's time for a large water change (40-60%) and a cuc then keep testing for all three when your tank can quickly convert ammonia into nitrate you tank is cycled (should take a week or two)
After that every time you add a fish you will get a mini cycle (due to increased bio load) I would start out with the hardiest fish and add one fish per month (some exceptions one being if you want a paired set such as clowns then I would add the two you want paired at one time)
Don't worry to much about algae in the first couple months tank will do some crazy things in this time period just scrape it off the glass and siphon it out on your wc day
I would also recomend a 10% wc once a week to avoid algae getting out of control algae eats light and nitrates so if it's getting bad you've got to much of one of those two things and wc is the only way to get take out nitrates (some exceptions to that rule but it requires some sort of plants or algae to consume the nitrates)
And that's my $.02 if you've got any questions just ask I'm sure others can chime in for more advice and always remember every tank is different what works in one might not work in another good luck

I Love Living In Japan

08-15-2012, 01:03 AM
Brady92 Thank You for a great response :clap:

Still debating on the S/W with the information that eveyone has posted really helps to make an informed decesion what to do with this aqaurium. Still debating and doing more research on the fish that everyone has listed.

08-15-2012, 12:08 PM
Sw is amazing if you do get ready for the addiction it's amazing

I Love Living In Japan

There's no such thing as an atheist in a foxhole

08-19-2012, 02:26 AM
I am still undecided what to do with this aquarium. The main issue it is only 12 inches wide. For any additional filtration I would have to build a new aquarium stand to add any other filtration.

The other issue having a salt water aquarium in my area none of the LFS carries salt for the water mix. They get the water from the Thai Sea. Finding quality S/W fish.

So I have decided to postpone doing anything with this aquarium untill I get it figured out.