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Discussion Starter #1
I currently have far to many freshwater planted tanks that i'm downsizing..so i recently bought Nuvo 24G tank (36"x12"x9")
I plan on using it as a freshwater shrimp tank for now but am finding my self more and more tempted to try salt.

The tank already has a built in sump. I hear the bigger the tank the easier it is to maintain for salt. So 24G may be a little more challenging for a beginner.. but aside from keeping an eye on parameters i can't see it being that much different than a fresh planted tank.

I just ordered a full spectrum ecoxotic e-series LED that claims it can be used for both fresh/marine.. so that my save me later if i do swap

How much "harder" is it actually with a small vs large marine tank? If i was to take the plunge to salt this winter/spring.. aside from a small protein skimmer (and of course crushed coral/live rock) is there any big requirements or things to consider?

Current "freshwater" thats actually a marine tank :)


Back of the tank / Sump area


About how much / month isn would one expect to spend on maintaining a small tank. (salt/chemicals ect)
 

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Wow I've always wanted to try one of those IM tanks. How is the initial quality?

I suspect the difficulty of a small tank is not much different than for fw. Less stable water and less options for inhabitants.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Ecstatically its a beautifully designed tank. I just have fluvial stratum as its initial purpose is to consolidate a few crystal shrimp tanks.. Ill give you an update once i fill it and see it in full action but so far i'm loving the design of it.
 

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Wow I've always wanted to try one of those IM tanks. How is the initial quality?

I suspect the difficulty of a small tank is not much different than for fw. Less stable water and less options for inhabitants.
+1... you'll need to be checking your parameters weekly probably, and you;ll need more test kits if you plan on keeping coral. Speaking of which, I was told that certain coral wont withstand entry level LED lights, that being said, the guy was probably trying to upsell me. good luck
 

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24G saltwater tank is easy, IMO you will regret that light tho for saltwater. as far as keeping corals, its quite easy, with regular water changes, you shouldnt need to be too concerned with maintaining water perameters as the water changes will do that for you unless you plan on going with high end corals and sps. ATM im running a 5g nano, diy aio tank with leds, no skimmer, just bio media, flow and water changes, i do a water change ever 3-6 days and everything stays happy and im keeping sps in the tank.

Also doing regular water changes can eliminate the need for a skimmer, in the next few months ill be seeing up an IM tank as a display so i can show people how easy, cheap, and pretty you can make a tank with minimal effort and a tight budget



 

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Discussion Starter #7
Be sure to post pics of that IM tank when you do it. Aside from salt is there any other chemicals or weekly maintenance things to consider? If I do salt I can always get a second led strip more aimed at marine if needed.
 

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Is the light I got considered entry level? It seemed overly pricey and fancy to me :)
no im not saying u got a cheap or entry light... im just saying be sure the light you have will bring out the best of your corals if you end up having them.

i was looking at a fluval sea one but backed out after being told i couldn't keep certain corals.
 

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IMO, if you can maintain the planted tank, you can maintain a saltwater tank. I'm super newbie (6months) on salty. I started out with 14G and I just upgraded to 34G.. I did bi-weekly water change and I only kept easy corals(LPSs). I think I will do the same on the tank that I just upgraded.. I don't add much chemicals to the tanks.. my LPS are doing ok. :)

it's so addictive to hunt a nice corals and fishes!! I wish I have a bigger saltwater tank to add more fishes! :)
 

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Make sure your using ro water not using it was my first mistake and yes that's fixture designed for plants look into the ever grow fixtures if you want some thing to grow it all the fixture you have won't be strong enuf
 

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I think the recurring theme is that the smaller you go, the more frequent you should be doing WC. The real question I think is if you believe you can be diligent enough to do it. That's a much tougher question. I found that I am having less time now so I had to switch to less demanding tank setups.
 

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With a 24G, a 2G (10%) WC weekly is nothing. I spent so much time trimming my Hi-Tech planted tank especially my carpet plants, so comparing it to a small nano tank is night and day. Never mind my Daily WC routine for my Discus tank. ;)

Once you're system is stable, you won't regret you switch to salt. :bigsmile:

That's based on my personal experience.
 

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Discussion Starter #14 (Edited)
Would I need a mini skimmer or is 2g weekly water changes the only real maintenance needed? I also read that skimmers will also take away the good stuff in the salt mix meaning you need to reminneralize to feed the corals.

Would it be detrimental if I was away and missed a week?

At least the salt cost wouldn't be to much! Is there anything extra to feed corals or is that all in the salt?

How many small fish would a 24g hold with out overloading it? I would rather stay on the low end and not worry about buildup in the tank.
 

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Would I need a mini skimmer or is 2g weekly water changes the only real maintenance needed? I also read that skimmers will also take away the good stuff in the salt mix meaning you need to reminneralize to feed the corals.

Would it be detrimental if I was away and missed a week?

At least the salt cost wouldn't be to much! Is there anything extra to feed corals or is that all in the salt?

How many small fish would a 24g hold with out overloading it? I would rather stay on the low end and not worry about buildup in the tank.
The amount of "good stuff" removed by a skimmer is so minuscule it wouldn't matter, 99% of corals don't need "food", just good light, I never feed my corals other than non photosynthetic corals which as a beginner I would recommend avoiding
 

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Also for the amount of fish it all depends on which fish, and how regular you are with water changes
 

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Would I need a mini skimmer or is 2g weekly water changes the only real maintenance needed? I also read that skimmers will also take away the good stuff in the salt mix meaning you need to reminneralize to feed the corals.

Would it be detrimental if I was away and missed a week?

At least the salt cost wouldn't be to much! Is there anything extra to feed corals or is that all in the salt?

How many small fish would a 24g hold with out overloading it? I would rather stay on the low end and not worry about buildup in the tank.
I don't run skimmer in any of my tanks. I use Reef Crystals on my WCs, their mineral contents are higher than the regular Ocean Nutrition salt. That takes care of the trace elements etc. For Cal, Alk and Mg, I dose Kalkwasser to maintain Calcium and Alk, but be careful, you need to watch your ph when dosing Kalk. I dose Mg once a month. I only check my parameters when I notice something is not right. The only reason why I dose is because I have SPS, if you only keep LPS and softies, no need to dose, you'll be fine with just WC.

There are times that I miss a week of WC, tank still looks good. But you'll notice it with your corals if there's a need to do WC, esp zoanthids. If they are not fully opening as usual, then time to do a WC.

I'm not running any reactor, I use Chemipure Elite and Seachem Denitrate on my HOB filter.

About fish, on my 20G nano I have a very low bioload, a pair of clown, 1 damsel, 1 bicolor blenny and several snails and hermits. You can add more but monitor your phosphate and nitrate, it should be on the tolerable limit otherwise you have one too many ;)

Good luck.
 

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well just some thoughts...

That tank seems to have a lid that seals it tight? If it does, you're going to want to leave it off for gas exchange. So because it's now an open top you're going to get evaporation and have to top up your tank every couple of days or get an auto top off for like $120. Auto top offs are awesome, I'd recomend it. So thats regular maintenance....

For a 24 gallon I'd think 3 to 4 small fish. That will keep your bioload small and not cause agression from the fish. I would keep 6 fish max in my 55 gallon.

Skimmer isn't necessary but if you're going to do coral just get one. You could get a nano skimmer to fit in that back compartment and you wont regret it. It removes the nasty particles (fish poop, rotting food) from the water before it breaks down. But like eveyone is saying, if you do a 5 gallon a week water change you probably don't need one.

A bucket of Instant Ocean salt at J&L is $40. It makes 160 gallons so a bucket will last you 32 weeks. Salt wont be pricey.

Whats going to shock you is the set up cost. Probably $50 in sand. Then if you do live rock it'll be about $200. You'll need a hydrometer $30. Test kits to get going, probably $60ish. Nano skimmer $150. Food $20. Heater $30. A powerhead or two $30. These are the basics and you don't have a fish yet...lol Where are you going to get your water? I started by buying it at the store but then ended up buying an Reverse Osmosis filter for home, another $200...

When I bought my 14 gallon biocube I couldn't believe all the extra stuff I had to buy.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
The tank does have a lid with 1/4" or so gap around plus finger holes. Sump is also open top.

I do have a basic RO unit I got used for $40 (plus another $80 for all new filters..) for some shrimp tanks as i got tired of going to the machine.

Heaters I have from other tanks. Already have 1 likely 2 nano powerheads so sounds like sand and rock and skimmer if I go that route are the big hits
Ironically I even have a refractometer from experimenting with trying to bread ammano shrimp.


I may in a small water line to the office as I do renos for a future possible auto top off. Good call!
 
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