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Old 09-05-2013, 01:07 AM   #1
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Planning Future 60 Gallon Build

So, I'm planning to start my first saltwater tank as a 60 gallon and I will mostly be building all the things like the tank and the stand and sump i will do myself as a DIY project. The dimensions will be 36 inches by 20 inches by 20 inches made of low iron glass. I will also be building a 25-30 gallon sump. I have been doing quite a lot of research, but I feel that it is good to get opinions on some things. I'm trying to save as much money as possible and the entire build would be awesome if it would come to under 2 grand. The DIY parts will probably be about 700-800. I am thinking about doing a somewhat diy light system from rapid led and choosing my own led which will come to about 500. Does anyone no if this company is good and whether or not it is reliable and good for the price? Also, in the sump will be a refugium, so what other equipment will be necessary. I am thinking about getting two hydor powerheads for up to 2400 gph, but they are rather expensive so can anyone tell me if they are worth it or are there cheaper ones that work just as well and are controllable? As for a protein skimmer, I was thinking maybe a reef octopus rated for around 120-160 gallons. Are these units good and reliable as well as worth it for the price? I think what I'm really asking here is what other equipment will I need and for the equipment I have picked out, are they good and reliable and are there cheaper replacements that work just as well. Also, I want to know what all the necessary equipment is and if I am missing any of them. I only want to start with necessary equipment so I can keep costs down. Please reply and write opinions and thank you in advance.
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Old 09-05-2013, 11:48 AM   #2
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Light - If you are looking at a budget light take a look at a 120w led fixture from Ebay. One should work for a mixed reef with dimmer sides for lower light corals or two would let you grow acros anywhere in the tank. They run about $120 each. Otherwise Rapidled is a good company to do business with.

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

Powerheads - The koralia evolutions are some of the most cost effective powerheads on the market right now. I would highly recommend them to anyone. It might be a good idea to get 3 smaller powerheads than 2 larger ones just so you can set up a more dynamic flow in your tank. You might also look at the WP25 as well. They can be hard to find but so far those look like great powerheads.

Protein skimmer - The reef octopus is a very highly recommended unit and that should be a good size for your tank.
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Old 09-05-2013, 12:01 PM   #3
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The lights are taotronics, right? I have heard about them, but I like the rapid leds better for their customization. The hydor koralia evolution powerheads, how much do they cost? And besudes that, is there any ewuipment I am missing or is that all the basic equipment I need? If so, they can you recommend any other equipment that will greatly benefit my tank?
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Old 09-05-2013, 12:08 PM   #4
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I did some figuring on some cree LEDs for an sps capable reef and it would be about $400 for a DIY light fixture. The customizability is good but the price tag turned me off of it compared to the ebay leds. The only thing I could think of adding in a rapidled fixture are reds, greens, and violets which are really just fad lighting right now and don't really add to the look of a reef tank.

The hydor evolution powerheads aren't terribly expensive. Check out Fish, Reptiles, Dog, Cat, Bird & Other Pet Products & Supplies and shop around. They should be about $30 ish each.

What brand of heater are you going to use?

I can't think else of anything off the top of my head that you would need.
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Old 09-05-2013, 12:18 PM   #5
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I was thinking one of those well rated eheim heaters, probably two of them put into my sump.
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Old 09-05-2013, 12:24 PM   #6
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Good choice. Those are some of my favorite heaters to date.
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Old 09-05-2013, 02:16 PM   #7
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For the hydor koralia evolution powerheads, I was thinking of getting 4 lower gph powerheads, 2 on opposite walls near the front and 2 in the back more towards the center. I think this will allow more options 4 wave patterns as well as ensure no dead zones. However I would like to hear your opinion on the placement of powerheads and on my idea of the placement.
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Old 09-06-2013, 12:11 AM   #8
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Old 09-06-2013, 12:17 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jolee0722 View Post
For the hydor koralia evolution powerheads, I was thinking of getting 4 lower gph powerheads, 2 on opposite walls near the front and 2 in the back more towards the center. I think this will allow more options 4 wave patterns as well as ensure no dead zones. However I would like to hear your opinion on the placement of powerheads and on my idea of the placement.
It sounds good but it really depends on how your rock work is set up. It will take a lot of work to get the flow just right in your tank. Imho that's the hardest pat of setting up a reef tank.
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Old 09-06-2013, 12:35 AM   #10
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Do you think this will be a good idea for setting up my tank and preparing for the future: I have decided to get an aquarium controller from the start. I have heard many good reviews about the apex, so that is the system I am leaning towards. I have decided that for know, I will stick with the equipment that I have decided on in this thread. However, after maybe a few years and I have enough money, would it be a good idea to slowly upgrade all my equipment? I think I might buy 2-3 mp40 vortechs after a year or so and I have enough money. I am also thinking about going with something like the radion light system, again once I have saved up money. This way, since my budget right now won't fit these items in, I can get them later as better equipment and to maximize the use of the apex controller. Please right opinion of this idea as well as please give opinion on apex controller, radion led lighting system, and vortech powerhead.
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