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Old 08-07-2013, 11:33 AM   #1
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Noob wants a SW tank!

So I have 7 tanks as of now and all are freshwater with africans, south americans, and tropicals, and I've grown bored of freshwater and want to take on a new challenge. I have an extra 20g tall tank and I want to do a sw tank with just 2-3 nice fish in it. I will get a 29g tank it its suggested and i have the stand space as well. But I need all the info and advice you guys can give me. Thanks in advance I'm really excited about this! Ohh and one more thing I'm on a college student/father of one budget so please no high dollar equipment but I will spend some coin on the essentials if need be!
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Old 08-07-2013, 11:52 AM   #2
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I would right off the bat say go 29 gallon due to the space saltwater fish require. Next get 20lbs of live sand, 30-40lbs of live rock, a powerhead or two rated for 350-450 gph each. If you want to go with a sump I would but if your budget doesn't allow I'd go with a hang on filter rated at 75 or more gallon with some filter floss in it to catch poop and uneaten food, skimmers are really nice for nutrient export and can lower water change intervals but they are another initial expense but can used in place of the filter(neither are required but they are highly recommended in my opinion), you'll need a good heater that has low chance of failing on you(research), salt mix, and a few other items I'm leaving out but all of this can be picked up fairly cheap. Look at drs foster and smith, petsolutions, eBay, amazon. All of the websites have good prices. And by all means keep asking questions. Don't make ANY uninformed purchases. LFS will sell you a dig food bowl for your tank if you let them so ask here. Keep this thread going.
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Old 08-07-2013, 11:53 AM   #3
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With a 29 you could look at something like a pair of clowns and a firefish or some other smaller fish. Like I said though make sure you ask some have difficult care requirements
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Old 08-07-2013, 11:59 AM   #4
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I would right off the bat say go 29 gallon due to the space saltwater fish require. Next get 20lbs of live sand, 30-40lbs of live rock, a powerhead or two rated for 350-450 gph each. If you want to go with a sump I would but if your budget doesn't allow I'd go with a hang on filter rated at 75 or more gallon with some filter floss in it to catch poop and uneaten food, skimmers are really nice for nutrient export and can lower water change intervals but they are another initial expense but can used in place of the filter(neither are required but they are highly recommended in my opinion), you'll need a good heater that has low chance of failing on you(research), salt mix, and a few other items I'm leaving out but all of this can be picked up fairly cheap. Look at drs foster and smith, petsolutions, eBay, amazon. All of the websites have good prices. And by all means keep asking questions. Don't make ANY uninformed purchases. LFS will sell you a dig food bowl for your tank if you let them so ask here. Keep this thread going.
awesome info! i know all the bad rap of the topfin power 75 but i like it, the noise isnt bad at all, and it does WORK, it cleared up my 46g bow front overnight, i love it and for the price of $40 out the door at my lfs ill go with it. i have heard i need live rock in my hob filters? or do i just do polyfil floss? and i think a 29g would be awesome as well, this tank is for my bedroom so i want it nice and pretty (for the wife lol) i already asked her and she said word for word "OH MY GAAAAWD, I WANT A NEMO!" lol so i guess ill be doing clowns or something similar to them, maybe other "pretty fish" in my wifes words, but i will for sure keep this going, my lfs store sells live rock and live sand, so i guess ill get it there, they also sell premixed saltwater? idk what thats about but they have a $600 setup fee and i wanna stay way under that or ill just pay em to do it
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Old 08-07-2013, 12:05 PM   #5
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I'd use dry rock to be honest with you. It's cheaper and you have no hitchhikers. I bought live rock and got the unfortunate luck of having a mantis shrimp get into my reef tank. You can easily be under $600. Go to petsolutions.com and price out the items I listed and you'll be surprised how low the cost is. Catch a petco on their $1 per gallon sales if you have one local and then you could step up to a 40 gallon breeder for $11 more lol the size really doesn't affect the cost of equipment until you get into the really large tank but I started with a 55 gallon and right now I have a 210 gallon looking for a bigger tank again lol
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Old 08-07-2013, 12:07 PM   #6
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Check Craigslist for Liverock. Also a good idea to look for any local reefing clubs. You can sometimes get rock for cheap and good used equipment for cheap or free.
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Old 08-07-2013, 12:14 PM   #7
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I'd use dry rock to be honest with you. It's cheaper and you have no hitchhikers. I bought live rock and got the unfortunate luck of having a mantis shrimp get into my reef tank. You can easily be under $600. Go to petsolutions.com and price out the items I listed and you'll be surprised how low the cost is. Catch a petco on their $1 per gallon sales if you have one local and then you could step up to a 40 gallon breeder for $11 more lol the size really doesn't affect the cost of equipment until you get into the really large tank but I started with a 55 gallon and right now I have a 210 gallon looking for a bigger tank again lol
i knew it! lol the petco sale just ended in July here for us, and i wanted a 40gb and i was going to get one but i didnt have a reason to, and i have a 36g bow front with a SINGLE green texas cichlid in it, with a topfin power 75 filter, sand, and dual t5 lighting already, i COULD go sw in that tank, BUT im still iffy on it because i love my texas, it took me forever to get him to 6" but im still thinking on it, and i know i have the small tank syndrome too lol

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Check Craigslist for Liverock. Also a good idea to look for any local reefing clubs. You can sometimes get rock for cheap and good used equipment for cheap or free.
i do check craigslist, but where i live sw tanks are pretty private and theres no clubs for it, my lfs "Reef Valley" is the closest thing to a club we have, im very good friends with all the guys because i get all my african fish and supplies there, food, weekend treats, feeders, equipment etc.
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Old 08-07-2013, 12:16 PM   #8
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Addiction is so bad that I've quit smoking but cant quit buying coral frags and new little fish for my tanks haha
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Old 08-07-2013, 12:30 PM   #9
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ok guys, would a royal gramma, a 4-stripe damsel, and a clown fish fit in the tank? my wife wants the finding nemo tank lol i know the angel and puffer wont fit though.
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Old 08-07-2013, 02:03 PM   #10
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What size tank will you actually use? I'd stay away from damsels in smaller tanks as they are aggressive fish. Clown will be fine and royal gamma as well if you go with a ~30 gal tank.
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