Need help' tips Any Knoladge

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#1
So I have a 15 gallon fluval fresh water tank that I want to turn into a salt water tank . As of now I know I need to buy a stronger LED light but not sure on what els to get? If anyone could help I'd really appreciate it
 

Xavier CR

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Heater with ink bird controller, nano protein skimmer, some ceramic media so fit in over flow area. Is this your first nano salt or salt in general?
 

resortez

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Welcome to the salty side. I would begin with making a list of fish & other critters you would like to keep in the 15. 15 gallons will put a limit to what species you can house but once you make your selections, it will help in deciding the type of sand to use & how to build a rock structure that can provide all the animals with a healthy & secure environment. Some of the best advise I have been given is to read up, read, read, read & when your done reading, read some more. Research the animals & their natural environment, nutrition needs, temperaments, etc. Do some research on the sand, rock, salt mix & the use of RODI water. Build a good maintenance kit, test kit & read up on proper saltwater parameters. Good water circulation in the display is key so make sure to read up on buying the right powerheads for that job. Read up on building a good clean up crew aka CUC. If possible, read up on quarantining fish & the process, it’s something worth getting familiar with. The main key of this hobby is patience & tons of it. These systems take time to build so take it slow & enjoy the process. Have fun with & I will say it again, read, read, research & more reading.
 
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.Add some bio media rock/sand make sure your tank is at its proper salinity, don’t forget to add Heater If possible add a auto top off of RODI water, Personally I say use fritz and let it cycle with some dr Tim ammonia or cheap fish/ molly ..... learn about checking the basics ammonia/nitrite and nitrates. If you need a led light I can give you my first light I purchased, nothing fancy but better then nothing( Aqua knight) you can see inappropriate reefer use if for his budget built, advise you to look up his 10 gallon budget build to kinda understand it a little better visually.Also ask if your not to sure about something. Also learn about fishes you can add keep in mind it’s a small tank that means you you can easily over load the system bio load and give you issues. Eventually you will need to learn about the trace elements and learn about the fishes you can add and corals.
 

Peppy

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#5
So I have a 15 gallon fluval fresh water tank that I want to turn into a salt water tank . As of now I know I need to buy a stronger LED light but not sure on what els to get? If anyone could help I'd really appreciate it
So I started similarly, and did a lot of diy so hopefully I can be of some help. if this is your first saltwater tank i would only buy the bare minimum basics. In general the Fluval flex 15 looks pretty good to convert to saltwater if you have proper expectations. The most important thing to buy if you don’t have one already is a rodi filter. I recommend rodi buddy $60 because it is cheap, easy to use, and will produce 0tds water assuming you’re city water isn’t horrible. I use it as a mobile unit that I hookup in my yard with a timer and make a 5 gallon water cooler bottles at a time so you can use when you mix your salt water. But since your tank is small you could just buy salt mix or ocean water as needed, but I personally don’t think it’s worth the time and gas. Ofcourse to reduce the upfront cost buying salt water at lfs is a good option. If you do get rodi filter system, you will also need a tds meter pen to test water which should be less than 20 bucks. You also need a refractometer to test the salinity. I would say these are the single most important and cost effective thing you can do to ensure your success. Next buy a small bucket of quality salt like redsea pro since it will have elevated levels so it will be one less thing for you to worry about in the event your corals ever needed the elevated levels. I would also buy some bio media (recommend seachem matrix as I think it’s the best bang for the buck). I would add as much of this as will fit into the bottom section under the foam filter. I would also buy some foam filter pads in differing density. I would cut to fit a layer of low, med, high density if practical if not then just run the foam that it comes with. On second thought just run as is and see how it is. I think the benefit of multilayer pad might be wasted on such a small system. Foam is great because you can pull it out and just wash it in rodi water for nutrient export. If things don’t look happy I would recommend pulling this foam out and washing it in rodi as often as you like assuming your bio is being handled by the rocks and bio media. Personally I prefer this over water change because water changes can be disruptive to stability especially for such a small system. I would say weekly or biweekly depending on live stock. I would only use carbon as needed, which I think you never really will. It’s more a nice to have imo. You will need to decide if you will run a sand bed or not. You will need to buy some live rock or at least cured rock if you don’t want to cure it yourself. You should put the rodi saltwater mix in the tank with live rock and sand and let It run the nitrogen cycle for a month. Imo this is all you would need to have like 3 fish max. I would recommend 2 turbo snails, 2 hermit crab, and 5 nesarius snails. For your first/test batch of corals I would recommend gsp, zoas, xenia. If the lights you have don’t seem to make your corals happy I would recommend buying either Zetlight zo1201. Imo I think this light is cost effective option but will definitly have limits interms of what you could keep happy in the long run. I would rather recommend ai prime because it’s feature rich, good price, and retains value. Also the light can be used when you move up and will always be of some use. You could Buy a cheaper light and it could work also but it would be less flexible and less liquid in terms of sell or trade. Sorry my suggestions are not sexy, imo reef keeping is a thinking man’s hobby so it is better to know your minimum requirements and fundamentals first and spend money where they will be effective preferably as needed. In your early stage I would suggest spending the money on test kits. To start I would recommend ati master reef kit because it’s cheap and tests for the basics of the nitrogen cycle. Then after you find stability in your nitrate param maybe the alk test (redsea or Hanna) would be good because learning to keep your alk stable will pay dividends. Imo testing is huge part of the hobby so you might as well get use to it. To keep the hobby satisfying and to bolster your coral growing ego, I would try to grow some soft corals like watermelon mushrooms, zoas, palys and lots of gsp. Grow them large and beautiful (as big as you want your ego lol) then you can sell or give them away and move on to your hearts content.
In terms of other equipment, I would say buy as needed. If your nutrient export does not seem sufficient then you can get a skimmer, but Always makes sure your feeding reasonably and appropriately. If your flow does not make your corals happy then buy a wave maker. All in all the name of the game imo is knowing what you put in will determine what you get out. Happy reefing!
 
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