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Old 11-30-2005, 09:40 PM   #1
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need help for Christmas

Hello- I am brand new to this site...and joined mostly to get advice. I bought my husband a 90 gallon used glass aquarium with an oak base and hood. It came with some lights, but not suitable for a reef. Neither of us has had a tank before, and 90 g. seems a bit large to me, but everything I read said go bigger, and he wants to build a reef, plus have fish. Anyway, I jumped into the tank because I got a GREAT deal, but don't really know where to go. The reef is what he wants to focus on mostly and the fish second. I know we need to do our research, but I also know he is just a little boy at heart and will want to "play" with it on Christmas morning. What else could I get him just to get the tank started and cycling and all the other first steps I read about? I think lights, protein skimmer, and filter are very important? Also all very expensive. Should I let him choose? Also, are there any smaller things I could use as "stocking stuffers" ? The Tank is NOT drilled, and I don;t know if I should do this for him before, or let him decide. Sorry to be so wordy, and thanks in advance for all your help! Looking forward to a life long hobby.
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Old 11-30-2005, 09:43 PM   #2
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Moving to the Saltwater and Reef Getting started forum. The site help/feedback is more intended for specific questions/comments about the site as a whole.
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Old 11-30-2005, 09:46 PM   #3
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stocking stuffer items could be test kits, thermometers, good books, gift certificates to online stores or local stores..those are just a few ideas.
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Old 11-30-2005, 10:36 PM   #4
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Yeah i would buy him a large container on instant occean "reef mix if ur doing a reef tank" a good master test kit, a hydrometor, you could buy him a good heater, these are all pretty inexpensive things.... Later on if your doing a reef setup good lighting is a must have and so is a good quality protien skimmer.....
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Old 12-01-2005, 08:43 PM   #5
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There are not too many Cheap things in this hobby when setting up a tank. Do not go cheap because after a few months you will find that it is not want you want, it is not working right. So you end up buying that more expensive piece of equipment you pass on because it was $40 more.
Live rock is a must have for a reef 1-2 lbs per gallon to start. You can start with cheaper lighting if you have it and then upgrade after you decide what type of corals you want. Get some safe play sand instead of paying for live sand. A good skimmer is a must. I would have the tank drilled and have a sump under the stand.
This is something you want to take your time on so do not rush and buy things you don't really need. SW is a cool hobby to get into but you need to take baby steps..
Remember that Nothing Good happenes fast in this Hobby............
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Old 12-02-2005, 02:03 PM   #6
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Thanks for the advice. What are the advantages/disadvanteges of having the tank drilled? Do you need the live rock to start the tank cycling? What sort of things should I consider when looking at skimmers? Also can anyone recommend a good online store?
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Old 12-02-2005, 02:04 PM   #7
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IT seems that John H. Tullock is a good author to go with for books on this hobby...is this true? any advice?
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Old 12-02-2005, 02:37 PM   #8
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Thanks for the advice. What are the advantages/disadvanteges of having the tank drilled?
This applies any time you have a separate tank or container to house extra water, either to move equipment out of the display or just for more water volume. The benefit to a drilled tank is that you wont need an overflow to move water to the sump (if you even buy a sump...) Some say the drilled tank is better then getting a HOB overflow as the syphon wont break, but many HOB overflows will not loose their syphon when/if power goes out. I have a HOB overflow and have been through a few hurricanes, and have lost power numerous times without the syphon breaking.

Quote:
Do you need the live rock to start the tank cycling?
You dont NEED the LR before starting the cycle but i would recommend it. If you dont add it now, you will want to have a new trash can in which you can put the rock and some saltwater to let it cure a few weeks before adding it to the tank to prevent excess ammonia getting into the tank from dieoff.

Quote:
What sort of things should I consider when looking at skimmers?
I'd look at something that does close to 2x your tank size. If you dont have a sump, you need to look into a model that can be used without a sump, which will limit the equipment a little. There is nothing wrong with this, as i have seen many nice tanks with a protein skimmer plumbed into the tank.

Quote:
Also can anyone recommend a good online store?
i have used, and have seen other use the following:

www.petsolutions.com
www.drsfostersmith.com
www.saltwaterfish.com
www.fishsupply.com

www.captivereefs.com - Darin is a regular member here on the boards, and is nice guy, he will talk to you and help you determine what you need. I have worked with him in the past, and comes highly recommended by me and many others on this board.


HTH
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Fish=1 yellow tang, 1 yellow headed jawfish, 1 pink/blue shrimpgoby, 2 perc clowns.
Future fish = 1 sixline, 1 lawnmower blenny
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Old 12-02-2005, 03:07 PM   #9
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Thanks so much for such a quick thorough response
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