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Old 07-04-2015, 12:11 PM   #1
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Starting 120 gallon

I've had small freshwater aquariums when I was younger but never a saltwater. I've done some research but I could use some help.

I've been buying a few things to start off. I found this tank(acrylic, tempered bottom) on Craigslist for $400 with a few extras. Previous owner used it for a turtle but I want to make it into a reef aquarium. I have read a few reviews online about top fun and some aren't too good, mainly about the quality of the seals. But it's what I have so I have to work with. I will do a leak test on it within the next few days but the guy I bought it from said it had no leaks and I gave him the benefit of the doubt considering he was a fellow Jarhead and is currently a helicopter pilot for the U.S. Marshals. Included were two fluval 110 filters which I will probably use one or both for a 20 gallon quarantine tank I am also going to set up. Those freshwater lights which I won't use unless I find some other use for them. A fluval 300 watt heater and another smaller heater I forgot brand and wattage. And a bunch of other extras which I will keep on hand in case I find some use for them.

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Tank dimensions
18"L x 60"W x 26"H

I was thinking on doing a multiple tank refugium/sump since the stand has multiple areas. Thinking of going with an external pump considering I live in south Texas and want to limit heat causing factors in water.
Still undecided on skimmer type.
I also need to drill the tank for the overflow. Still researching on overflow boxes and which setup would be best. Corner? Middle? Side?
I will do hard plumbing on the backside of it and might use flexible on whatever is out of site, still undecided since I haven't purchased tanks for sump/refugium.
I have 50lbs of dry/dead pukani and have 50lbs of AquaMaxx Eco-Rock Dry Live Rock from Marine Depot in order. I also ordered a AquaFX Barracuda RO/DI System - 100 GPD for when I start the cycling process.
I also have 140 lbs of arag alive Hawaiian black sand. Says gravel when ordered but the bags say sand and it doesn't look to be too "gravely". (Gf wanted black sand)
I will be putting a dark blue background. I have yet to pick out stock but I will figure that out once I am close to finish cycling, the pukani has a lot of gunk stuck in places I can't reach. I bought the acid recommended on some sites and tried it on some smaller pieces and I guess I left it in too long(20minutes) because it ate a lot of the rock. Don't want to throw away money.
I will be placing the tank in the dining area furthest wall from windows which does not get too much light, shades are usually closed anyways.
Looking into getting a gyre 150.

I also want LED lighting since my light bill is already high as it is.

Questions I have.
Best way to cure/cycle pukani?
Any reccomendations on placement of overflow?
Reccomendations on overflow boxes?
What size skimmer will I need?
What size of pump would be required? Also considering I will probably use multiple tanks which will increase the plumbing.
Recommended lighting? Nothing too expensive but reliable.

Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.









In the end, it's not the years in your life that count. It's the life in your years. -Abraham Lincoln
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Old 07-04-2015, 01:22 PM   #2
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I'll try to answer questions I feel comfortable about.
Overflow;Coast to Coast ,bean animal,herbie are all good designs.
Skimmer should be rated for 2x tank volume.
I like DC pumps to save electricity and they generate less/little heat.
I use jeboa and know others who use the Diablos.
Niether have a good track record as external(as they leak),
but my jeboas(12,000lph) have been flawless for almost 2 years now so I just ordered more for other tanks!
Lights;
2 of these should work for most anything you want coral wise
2pcs Hot Marsaqua 165W LED Aquarium Light True Watts 120WĪ5 Reef Coral Grow | eBay
Hopefully other will soon chime in.
Good luck !
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Old 07-04-2015, 05:09 PM   #3
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IMO, $400 for a tank that will need all the equipment to make it saltwater is too much. Check out the 120 build in my profile. I think you could do better and buy something that is saltwater ready.
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Old 07-05-2015, 10:29 AM   #4
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Thanx for the input coralbandit. I will definitely look those up.
As I said spoon, I already bought it so I have to work with it. I live in a city where there are no LFS and only two petco stores that I have yet to see a reef ready tank. I wanted to order one online but at the time money was a little tight and I figured I'd just buy stuff little by little.


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Old 07-05-2015, 01:46 PM   #5
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Sorry about that. Didn't realize it was already bought. Slow and steady collecting the right equipment and doing it right. Good luck with the build. Will definately be following along.
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Old 07-05-2015, 03:47 PM   #6
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No problem at all. Yes, it's been a few months since I started the research and buying process. I definitely don't want to do trial by error and lose any fish. I like to do my research and get things right.


In the end, it's not the years in your life that count. It's the life in your years. -Abraham Lincoln
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Old 07-05-2015, 04:20 PM   #7
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Holy just noticed you said you haven't purchased tanks for sump/fuge!
PETCO $per gallon is on now through Aug.8 I believe.
You sound handy enough with your plans I will suggest you make yourself a different stand!
Make it wider then tank to fit plumbing and what ever tank you use for sump fuge.
I think using the stand in pic will not work for sump fuge(too small)IMO.




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Old 07-05-2015, 09:57 PM   #8
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Oh nice, I didn't know they were having a sale. I will try to swing by tomorrow after work.


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Old 07-05-2015, 09:57 PM   #9
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I am not too sure about making a new stand. The gf might get pissed at the expenses lol


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