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Old 08-03-2003, 03:00 AM   #1
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New Reef tank

I would like to make a reef tank. I am either going to get a 29 gal or 55 gal. tank. I was thinking about buying a 55 gal. setup from wal-mart cuz my mom works there and i could get it for well over half off. So even if i just used the tank it would alot cheaper. If you guys could tell me some good combinations of filters and lights i would greatly appreciate it. Please remember i am only 17 years old and i work at Burger King lol. I can afford a little bit here, and a little bit there. I dont want the best stuff, or stuff that doesnt 'just work' for that matter. Any input on this would be greatly appreciated.
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Old 08-03-2003, 08:55 AM   #2
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Hi Ghetto, I'm pretty new here my self and will be asking this great group for some advise about filtration very soon but I just wanted to say I started with a 29 gal for my reef tank also. In the begining I had some troubles getting started. My piece of advise fro you is to start with the 55 gal, the more water you have the easier it is to keep stable. compact floresents are the way I went for lights as soon as I upgraded to my 75 gal. they were to hard to get and to expensive for the 29 gal. in my area. As far as filtration I currently have a skilter 250 and a penguine 170 bio wheel. They have worked well for me and when I get my 29 gal set back up they will go back on there. I wish you the best of luck and the best advise I have is just go slow. I can't guess how much of my hard earned money I flushed getting fish I wasn't ready for. Just remember you should put in as much live rock as you can afford to start. Another important point is what are you going to use as a bottom substrate?? I have been reading about dsb and would like to use that, my problem is my tank is up and running and now I will need to figure out how to get the crushed coral out and the dsb in w/o trashing my live rock setup. Again best of luck
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Old 08-03-2003, 10:30 AM   #3
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One thing that I would say is that you need to decide just how much you want to spend. a "reef" tank, as opposed to a saltwater "fish" tank, requires a good sum of money to get started correctly. That is not with the top of the line items either.

Chris has given some sound advice as far as the liverock and sand bed. If you want to have more than just low light corals, your lighting will be quite costly. Also, the inhabitants of the tank as well, are not cheap. I would say the little bit here and there concept would not reap a successful reef tank. It would be best to set aside the funds until you have the dollars to make it work. As an example of the difference between fresh and saltwater, most freshwater people would think a 25.00 fish is expensive. In salt, that is a really cheap fish. The crabs, snails, stars for the clean up crew (which is a must) can be costly unless you order them online and even then, it isnt cheap. So, as much as it sounds like I am trying to discourage you, believe me, I am NOT, it is just that I would hate to see you get half way there and have to stop before you get started.

I am sure others will have additional comments and suggestions for you.
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Old 08-03-2003, 11:04 AM   #4
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2 pounds of LR per gallon of water and 5" DSB, and a good protein skimmer is all ya need for a filter. as far as lights I think you get the most light out of pc's for the doller. just my .02
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Old 08-03-2003, 01:11 PM   #5
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Re: New Reef tank

Great info so far. I would recommend reading about the many different type of >>filtration<< that are available and make your descision based on what's easiest for you and and still provides the best possible environment for the animals that will be in your care.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ghettopunch187
I was thinking about buying a 55 gal. setup from wal-mart cuz my mom works there and i could get it for well over half off.
We need to talk... Does mom need a new son...!! :P LOL

Cheers
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Old 08-03-2003, 06:37 PM   #6
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lol im pretty sure 3 kids is all she wants This pay check will be around $300, and i was planning on spending more than half on stuff for my reef. Im planning on buying everything in parts until i got most of the stuff. The only thing im going to buy all at once is the live rock, then the cleaning crew. Any links to lighting would be good. Can the lighting be used in the hood that comes with the tank or will i need a new one?
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Old 08-04-2003, 04:03 AM   #7
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So i should go with PC's rather than metal hallides? Will PC's run in the hood that comes with most tanks? And is it totally necassary to have a sump?
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Old 08-04-2003, 12:56 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Ghettopunch187
So i should go with PC's rather than metal hallides? Will PC's run in the hood that comes with most tanks?
The light you use will primarily be determined by the types of light demanding animals you wish to keep. PC's can support a wide variety of softies, LPS and a few types of SPS corals. If your main goal is SPS and clams however, MH would be a good consideration. I would first decide the "goal" of the tank before deciding on the lights.

Quote:
And is it totally necassary to have a sump?
No a sump is not necessary but it is recommended. It will allow for greater total water volume, increases gas exchange, more room for bacteria and can store all the unsightly equipment that would otherwise need to be in the tank.

With sufficient amounts of LR (1Ĺ+ lbs/gal) and enough sand to add to the anoxic dentrification (I am not speaking of a DSB), combined with a good skimmer you can operaate a successful tank. You need be a bit more mindful of bio load and fish types though. You could also consider a planted refugium.

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Old 08-04-2003, 05:58 PM   #9
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Quote:
enough sand to add to the anoxic dentrification
I want corals like frogspawn and leather corals, but would also like brain coral.
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Old 08-04-2003, 07:02 PM   #10
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For LPS and soft corals, either PC or VHO lighting would suffice. The loose guideline is 3-5w/gal.

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