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Old 06-08-2013, 06:21 AM   #1
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First reef tank... Maybe

Well, I've been running a fish only puffer tank(gsp) for about a year now with no real issues, but it has been a really simple tank. HOB filters, no live rock, simple. And my boyfriend just recently saw the big reef tank at the LFS and asked the big question - can we have one of THOSE. After showing him the price of tiny little frags and explaining that I am not giving my puffers any $30 meals, he got why my salt tank isn't a reef, but it got us itching for a reef tank. We are planning on moving in the next month or so, and we are planning on setting up more tanks after the move, and on picking up at least one or two larger (40B-55) tanks at the next petco dollar per gallon sale, so I am thinking about maybe making one of those into a reef tank.

So, what all do I really need? This will likely be a slow build, as I won't be getting any new tanks until next month and it will take me a while to save for some of the equipment as I am already needing upgraded lighting for my big fresh tank. I just want to do this right the first time around. I think I will be doing a sump, probably with an overflow box instead of a drilled tank. I would like a skimmer, and maybe a refugium in the sump.

Help a new reefer out!
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Old 06-08-2013, 12:42 PM   #2
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Oh, and I forgot to mention that my LFS does carry saltwater stuff, just not much on the equipment side. Most things will be ordered online, so links are greatly appreciated. Also, I plan on getting ro/di water from the LFS at least to start with.
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Old 06-08-2013, 01:55 PM   #3
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Take things slowly and it doesnt have to be too horribly expensive. The lighting will be your main first buy. I'd suggest keeping an eye on craigslist as there are some **** good deals on there from time to time. If you just want live rock and corals you really dont need a ton of fancy equipment. tank, lights, powerheads, and plenty of live rock is all you really need if you dont go crazy stocking.
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Old 06-08-2013, 05:57 PM   #4
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I would suggest getting dry rock from bulk reef supply. I recently bought 40lbs from there and really like the rocks they sent me. Plus they were very affordable.

If I had the choice between a 40breeder and a 55 I would pick the 40 in a heartbeat. It offers a lot more width to do aquascaping and you'll be glad of the change. Also, as soon as I get to my computer ill link you an affordable led light fixture that would go well with the tank.
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Old 06-08-2013, 06:12 PM   #5
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Reef tanks are easy. Light, good water, and flow. For a 40 you could probably just get one taotronics led fixture and be done with that issue. For water, you might already be in the ro/di route. And for flow, it will all depend on what kind of coral you want and their requirements.
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Old 06-08-2013, 06:30 PM   #6
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Thanks guys! I was thinking 40B too. I love the footprint of those tanks. Depending on the exact timing of the dollar per gallon sale I hope to pick up a couple of them. What all should I be able to keep under those taotronics? I don't want to start off with anything too hard to keep, but I would rather avoid needing to upgrade too soon. How many powerheads should I go with? I know at least two, but with the wider footprint would maybe three or four be better?

And yeah, I had planned on doing mostly base rock and seeding it with some live from my LFS.
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Old 06-09-2013, 01:12 AM   #7
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I am in the planning stages of a 40b myself. For lighting I am planning on buying

2 Dimmable 120W Aquarium Coral Reef Fish Tank White Blue LED Light Black US | eBay

I have heard from numerous people on multiple forums that those are great lights. While one of them might be enough for most everything I plan on buying the 2 that are listed at that link to help with the spread of the light and to make sure I have enough.

For powerheads I plan on using 2x Koralia Evolution 600 along with a 400gph refugium pump. Depending on if I need it or not I have a smaller pump from my 20g I am ready to add if needed.

It is funny, for some of the more difficult things to keep (which happen to be my favorites) such as gorgonians; they are only really difficult because of the need for food. I spent about $30 to put together a phytoplankton culture that allows me to make as much food as I would like to add to my tanks which has only a small amount of biological impact on my tank. I would look into the reasons corals are difficult to keep before shying away from them.
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Old 06-09-2013, 02:24 PM   #8
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The two LED's linked above will let you keep just about any coral you'd want I'd go with 2 Koralia 750 or even 1050's. here's a link to some coral care and needs to get you started Dont skimp on a skimmer the coral will need very good water to do well

https://sites.google.com/a/asira.org/www2/caresheets
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Old 06-09-2013, 02:49 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Grizz View Post
The two LED's linked above will let you keep just about any coral you'd want I'd go with 2 Koralia 750 or even 1050's. here's a link to some coral care and needs to get you started Dont skimp on a skimmer the coral will need very good water to do well

https://sites.google.com/a/asira.org/www2/caresheets
Wow, that's one of the best links I've seen for coral care thanks for sharing it!
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