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Old 02-24-2010, 01:22 AM   #1
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What to do next??

Hello and greeting, I have just had my new 55gal. set up today...I am wondering what to do next or do I need to wait awhile for everything to get to specs before I start buying things?? If so how long should I wait, and what would need to be the first addition to my aquarium??
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Old 02-24-2010, 01:30 AM   #2
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Congrats and Welcome!

Can you give us some information about your setup?
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Old 02-24-2010, 01:35 AM   #3
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55gal. 25lbs fiji live rock, 30lbs fiji dry rock. 125 Protein Skimmer, with huge filtration system in stand, I think a 600gph pump, and 2 150gph water jets in tank, 1 on each end. Don't know alot about it, but I have 1600.00 in the setup. I also have a huge light for the top, he didnt hook up, says it doesnt need light for a couple days, he is bringing that Friday.. I hope this helps!!
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Old 02-24-2010, 01:46 AM   #4
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Have you cycled the tank? Own test kits for ammonia, nitrite, and nitrates? Read any of the articles in our articles section?

To answer the question, "what to do next", we need to know what you've done up to this point... other than spend $1600.
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Old 02-24-2010, 01:51 AM   #5
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The tank just got set up earlier today!! So I am guessing it needs to cycle for awhile, before going any farther??
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Old 02-24-2010, 02:28 AM   #6
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Yes... the tank needs to cycle before anything living is added to it. Some folks use fish to cycle a tank, but an easier/kinder/less expensive method is to use a raw cocktail shrimp. The shrimp will decompose, giving off ammonia, which will then set the whole process in motion to "cycle" the tank.

First thing though... it sounds like you need to do some research. This page of articles from the forum's "Article" section will give you some real basics:

Articles

The article on cycling is at the very bottom. I'd also suggest you get a good book and read, read, read. Robert Fenner's "The Conscientious Marine Aquarist" is a must-have in my opinion.

So who is this "he" that is bringing the light? Are you having a local fish store setup your tank for you?
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Old 02-24-2010, 03:41 AM   #7
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Yes as Kurt recommends...get a few books and read up on what you are getting into. Saltwater is not hard you just need to know what you are getting into and read, read and read somemore. Read up on cycling your tank, water chemistry, lights and how to test your water you will need a liquid test kit and you should use it to get used to it. You will need a refactometer to test salinity of your water. you need to know all this before you even think about fish and or corals or whatever you want to keep in your tank.
Most of all, go slow and enjoy the hobby.
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Old 02-24-2010, 02:25 PM   #8
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Yeah the "he" is a local owner of a Aquatic store...He had to order the light I suppose that is the main reason it is not here, but I did look and it does say it is a good thing to go without light for a few days..Thanks for the info peeps, I will get all the needed testing kits, and get on top of that FO SHO... Oh and my wife loves reading books, so I will have to get her to start reading up on it...
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Old 02-24-2010, 02:35 PM   #9
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So what is a good testing kit, you guys use?? Is there one available that does it all, or am I going to need to purchase different types of kits??
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Old 02-24-2010, 04:58 PM   #10
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For now, while you cycle, all you need is ammonia, nitrite, and nitrate.
After you cycle, but before fish, you'll want to know your pH.
As you start adding coral, you'll want tests for calcium and alkalinity. A test for magnesium and phosphates probably also wouldn't be bad to have, but not required.

A good value for your money (in my opinion) are API tests. I believe they have a Saltwater "Master" kit and a Reef "Master" kit that contains many of the above-mentioned tests. As you get a feel for how deep and involved you want to get in the hobby, there are more accurate test kits that you might want to invest in. For example, I use API for everything except nitrates, calcium, and phosphates. For those, I use Salifert. Just something you'll figure out as you go along.

As thincat mentioned, you really need a refractometer to accurately keep tabs on the salinity. Folks try to get by cheap with a swing-arm hydrometer, but in the end they end up buying the refractometer. For $50, a refractometer is about the best investment you can make, especially if you're going to keep corals.

I just asked who "he" was, because I was thinking it might be someone at a LFS that was setting up the tank for you. Sometimes, LFS advice and the advice you get here tend to give conflicting information, so that's just something to keep in mind. Some LFS don't necessarily have the interest of the customer or fish foremost on their mind. Not saying that's the case with yours.
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