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Old 07-26-2006, 12:50 AM   #1
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First SW Tank! First post! First cry for help!

Heya everyone,
I've been browsing this site for a few days and finally decided to land my first post here. This Saturday I'll be picking up a 150g to be used as a FOWLR or RT. I've got some beginner newbie questions that need some answering though.

-For filtration I plan on buying the Aqua clear Pro300 seen here:
http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll...DME:L:RTQ:US:1
......Is this a good choice for proper filtration? Would a refugium be a nesecessary addition to this set up? The tank does not have any holes drilled so I figured this was a decent deal having an overflow box coming with the product.

-Would I need more than one overflow box?

-I read in this forum that starting out your system as a FOWLR is optimal as you can save on lighting. What other benefits come from this and is the money saved on lighting worth waiting for the reef aquarium?

-Crushed coral is a good choice for substrate I am reading...I hear sand gets caught in the filters? True?

-Which is the best type of LR to purchase when first starting a SW tank?


Thank you guys for all of your help, SW is a lot to take in all at once (As I'm sure a lot of you guys know) and I hope I didnt sound toooo much like a newbie, though I wont try and hide it .

-Mike
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Old 07-26-2006, 12:56 AM   #2
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Mike088, I am also a newbie, however the few questions I can answer is that many people actually do not like crushed coral. Many have switched over to argonite sand. CC tends to build up Nitrates.


A refigium is not neccasary but it is a great piece to have and most will agree.

The money saved on lighting is up to you. You can always upgrade when you are ready for corals. It may not be a bad idea to start FOWLR and then later reef anyway.
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Old 07-26-2006, 02:35 AM   #3
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I'd recommend a FOWLR over a reef tank if this is your first SW tank. If nothing else, it'll be less of a headache and cheaper. And you could also go the FOWLR route for a year or two, and then convert things over to a reef setting. Also, welcome aboard AA! This is a really good website for beginning and veteran aquarium nerds. Once thing I will say, there are many schools of thought for the "ideal" way to set a tank up; but in the end, it's your tank. Have fun with it!
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Old 07-26-2006, 07:29 AM   #4
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A drilled tank is much better (IMO) than a standard tank with an overflow box, which can give you plenty of problems. Loss of siphon is a fairly common complaint.

If you're spending all that money on a new tank then I would be certain to get one that is drilled and has the filter boxes built into the corners. If the tank is used then you just have to work with what you've got. If the tank is acrylic it should be easy to drill. If it's glass do NOT try to drill the glass. That task should only be done by the tank manufacturer.

Just mt 2 cents.
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Old 07-26-2006, 09:58 AM   #5
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WELCOME TO AA!!!

Quote:
-I read in this forum that starting out your system as a FOWLR is optimal as you can save on lighting. What other benefits come from this and is the money saved on lighting worth waiting for the reef aquarium?
Please do not cycle your tank with fish.

I think FOWLR is a great starting point, to learn how your tank works, how to maintian it and get the hang of it. Doing PWCs and testing the water and such.

Quote:
-Crushed coral is a good choice for substrate I am reading...I hear sand gets caught in the filters? True?
I started with CC and quickly realized it got dirty pretty quick and limited my clean up crew and some possibilities of sand sifting fish. This is all a matter of opinion. Mine is go with sand. It won't get sucked up in anything as long as you direct you water moving PHs or filter so that it doesn't disturb the sand.

Quote:
-Which is the best type of LR to purchase when first starting a SW tank?
This is another opinion answer. Some go with part LR and base rock (the base rock will grow into LR), this is a little cheaper than going with all LR. I would wait for some other opinions and names of people's fav LR.

Quote:
Thank you guys for all of your help, SW is a lot to take in all at once (As I'm sure a lot of you guys know) and I hope I didnt sound toooo much like a newbie, though I wont try and hide it
Don't worry about that, we were ALL new at one time!
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Old 07-26-2006, 10:05 AM   #6
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I have crushed coral in my tank and I'm going to sand very soon. Th CC looks good for a while...but gets so dirty later on. I would recommend starting with sand to save headaches later on when you want to change ( and I think you will )
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Old 07-26-2006, 10:44 AM   #7
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I agree with the sand over the crushed coral. You may think it is aesthitically better and may even try to follow the Freshwater stigmas. IMO the benefits of live sand are not only aesthitic but he sand also hosts a variety of saltwater creatures. The sand also provides more surface area for biological filtration.

With all the benefits and little to no drawbacks there is no way you can loose!
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Old 07-26-2006, 12:29 PM   #8
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Quote:
-I read in this forum that starting out your system as a FOWLR is optimal as you can save on lighting. What other benefits come from this and is the money saved on lighting worth waiting for the reef aquarium?
IMO... the only difference between reef and FOWLR is corals. Sure there are other things like light, better parameters, etc but corals is the main difference. I would start "planning" for a reef and get all the appropriate equipments for a reef so you don't have to upgrade for a reef later on, which will result in more spending. That's just my opinion b/c i really think you'll go reef soon like most of us did

Quote:
-For filtration I plan on buying the Aqua clear Pro300 seen here:
http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll...DME:L:RTQ:US:1
......Is this a good choice for proper filtration? Would a refugium be a nesecessary addition to this set up? The tank does not have any holes drilled so I figured this was a decent deal having an overflow box coming with the product.
Get a skimmer. Way better than filters and is more appropriate for a SW aquarium. Get the best skimmer that you can afford. The better your skimmer, the bigger bioload your tank can handle. Plus, you won't have to upgrade to a bigger skimmer when you upgrade to a bigger tank.

A refugium is not a neccessary. It's just a luxury. IMO, you don't need it yet. Just focus on a good skimmer.

Quote:
-Would I need more than one overflow box?
No, i don't think so.

Quote:
-Crushed coral is a good choice for substrate I am reading...I hear sand gets caught in the filters? True?
Like the guys had said, sand is better. If i remember correctly, crushed coral will cause PH problems later on.
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Old 07-26-2006, 04:26 PM   #9
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Thanks for all the responses. I had a question as to the skimmer response. The filter I plan on buying has a skimmer attached to it already, were you saying this was insufficent or did not realize that it came with one? Thanks again.


-Mike.
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Old 07-26-2006, 09:11 PM   #10
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Ah ok... didn't looked at the "filter" XD
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