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Back in the game - 20 gallon long

reefnewb

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Hi everyone!

I've been lurking around the forums for a while, and thought I'd get back into saltwater tanks after a few years' hiatus. My previous tanks were mostly just fish, with a couple of easier corals. I was admittedly pretty lax about maintenance, but have decided that this time around, I'll be much more serious about planning the tank and maintenance. So while I have had tanks in the past, it wasn't really anything serious and I'm pretty much still a newbie. I plan on running a basic 20 gallon long tank without a sump. I hope to eventually have max 3 small fish and mostly softies/LPS, with maybe a monti cap and eventually maybe even some easier acros. I currently don't have anything set up yet, but just wanted to plan things out clearly just so I know what my budget will be like. I'm a recent college grad so budget will be a little small haha. This is the set up I have in mind:

- 20 gallon long
- HOB Skimmer: Reef Octopus BH 2000 (rated for ~100 gal tank - this came from my old 90 gallon tank, so I'm not sure if it would be overkill?)
- 2 Koralia 425
- Light: Viparspectra 165W https://www.amazon.com/VIPARSPECTRA-Control-Dimmable-Aquarium-Spectrum/dp/B07SHR6HW1?th=1
- I have live rock from my other tanks that I can use and will also be buying sand

Lots of incoming questions, brace yourselves haha:
1) I know that the skimmer is definitely really big, but is there such thing as too powerful? Also the actual dimensions of the skimmer itself might be really big, so if I were to use it, I think I would have to install something under it to maybe take part of the weight, and not have it all rely on the tank supporting it (a bit worried about the tank not being able to support such a huge HOB skimmer)
2) I've been reading that we should aim for 20-40x flow turnover, but I've seen a few people online sporting 2 Koralia 425s. Do y'all think it might be overkill in a 20 gal to have 2 of these, plus the skimmer that has a max flow of 198GPH?
3) Does anyone have any experience with the Viparspectra? Would one of these be good enough for a 20 gallon long? Or would it even maybe be too strong for a tank that's only 13 inches high?
4) Does anyone have any experience with hanging these types of lights? I can't find a stand or mount from which I could hang the light off of. I'm not really wanting to hang it from the ceiling or mounting it from a wall.
5) Another light question - or does anyone have experience with another type of these LEDs from a different brand?
6) Currently I only have an RO system for drinking, so I was thinking that I'll just go ahead and use this while I only have fish. Later on in a few months' time or maybe even a year, I'll buy a DI to add onto my system, and slowly mix in the new water through weekly water changes before adding corals. Would this be ok to do?

Thanks in advance!
 

TriggerFan

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If you are in the Cypress area, I will gladly give you one of my 20 gallon long and a new bag of 20lb of CaribSea Fiji Pink sand.
 

PicassoClown

I’m a girl 😂
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Hi! I’d check out my build thread, I’ve got a 20 long with a skimmer and only one powerhead, very happy with the flow in there. I also sell corals quite frequently and I’m in sugar land too! Would love to have you stop by so I can hook you up with some beginner corals :)
 
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reefnewb

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I said I would give it to you, not sell it to you. 😎
Oh my bad - you a real one! Really appreciate the offer! Would have taken you up on that if my tank plans weren't just overruled by the rest of the household. We have a 30 gal filled with water and rock that's been sitting in a corner without any fish/life for a couple of years, so it was decided that I had to go with that one instead of adding another tank to the house :/
 
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reefnewb

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Hi! I’d check out my build thread, I’ve got a 20 long with a skimmer and only one powerhead, very happy with the flow in there. I also sell corals quite frequently and I’m in sugar land too! Would love to have you stop by so I can hook you up with some beginner corals :)
I'll look forward to that once my tank gets to that point! Thanks for reaching out! Will be checking out your thread soon - smaller tanks always amaze me
 
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