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Old 10-07-2005, 12:50 PM   #1
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Setting up a marine aquarium.

Hi..
I'm helping my dad set up our first marine aquatic fish tank..

would really love to get your guy's help...
we're getting a 5ft x 2ft x 2ft ftank..

what are the essesntial and basic items that we need to get/buy?

we're really new in doing up a marine one..but we ahve had successful freshwater aquatics...


thanks...
cheers.
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Old 10-07-2005, 01:07 PM   #2
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Live rock and live sand are pretty much a must. A lot of people buy argonite sand from home depot to cut back on live sand cost. Live rock can also be shortcutted by buying 50% live rock/base rock. Most people recommend 1.5#'s of live rock per gallon of water in tank. Live sand ranges from 2" sand bed to 4-6". There are calculators on this site for the sand amount needed I know. If you don't know how many gallons your tank is, there's a calculator for that. Live rock can be gotten from LFS and a lot of people recommend liverock.com

Also get a decent protein skimmer. I don't have a tank as large as yours so I will let other people recommend one for you.

Powerheads are needed for water circulation. Get at least 2 if not 3 or 4 for that size tank where their combined flowrates = 10-20 X the size of your aquarium an hour.

Heaters will be needed. I recommend 2 because it gives you failover if one fails, the other can compensate for it not working.

If you want corals, good lighting. Either PC or MH lights.

Test kits for ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, phosphate, and ph.

Avoid using crushed coral and any instant cycle products (BioSpira)

Also, have a credit card with a nice credit limit and lot's of patience.

And last but not least, a smaller aquarium to use as a quarantine tank.

Good luck. Read around on the forums and plan it out. You can get the rock and sand in the tank with water and spend the next few weeks studying up while the tank cycles.

Oh, welcome to AA.
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Old 10-07-2005, 07:35 PM   #3
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What type of tank were you thinking about... Fish only or Reef...
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Old 10-07-2005, 07:37 PM   #4
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I would reccommend you get The Conscientious Marine Aquarist by Robert M. Fenner. This is a great book for a beginner. It helped me understand a lot about SW tanks.
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Old 10-09-2005, 12:39 PM   #5
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well my dad was thinking of making it iinto a reef (fishes and corals?)

well' we're in sunny singapore here so instead of heaters, we need chillers instead...

a question? do we need an undergravel system for marine tank? we used undergravel system for our fresh water one.

thanks for the info guys......i'll look up on the book if its on sale here

will be waiting for replies.
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Old 10-09-2005, 04:03 PM   #6
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Most people recommend not using a UGF. I agree, especially with corals since it can become a nitrate factory.
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Old 10-09-2005, 11:58 PM   #7
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I would do a lot of reading and research before starting this hobby. It will save you lots of money, time, and frustration. UGFs aren't usually recommended for SW since you really want to go with argonite (sand). They can work especially if you reverse the flow (water goes down the tubes and up through the substrate). Hope I don't get banned for this, but there's another forum (aboutsaltwater) that has an Essentials section. Good reading. You're father military? Good luck!

KG
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Old 10-10-2005, 06:55 AM   #8
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With enough live rock (1.5 to 2lb a gallon) wich is up to 240lb in your tanks case (a mix of liverock and baserock can be used to save some $$$) and a good skimmer should be all you need to filter the tank properly.. I would recommend curing the liverock before adding any livestock.. reading the above mentioned book will help alot in understanding filtration and chemistry.. getting good set of testkits is a must as well.. NH3, NO2, NO3, PO4, calcium, alkalinity and possibly a stromium testkit will be useful in starting up a tank that will have coral.. (If I missed a testkit someone help me out here.. :P I think I got them all) A RO/DI unit will be a great investment as well..
I dont want to get into UGF usage.. but you can do a search here on the forum and find out what is thought about it in general. for a reef system IMO its just not an option NO3 is very bad for coals and UGF's and RUGF's make it almost impossible to keep the levels low.. That and you cant use them with sand.. HTH
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Old 10-10-2005, 11:55 AM   #9
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Hey hey...
thanks guys...

will read up on the forums and book as much as i can....

KG: nah my dad's not in the military, he's a retired police officer though...
find this forum a great help and you guys ahve been superb!

cheers.....
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