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Old 01-21-2012, 03:40 PM   #1
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Starting a saltwater tank need help?!?!

Yes i recently got a 45 gallon tall tank and i want to turn it into a salt water aquarium wat is a good basic list of what i will need to start. I have a good filter and heater but what else do i need to start off good?
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Old 01-21-2012, 03:49 PM   #2
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Seriously, start with a book. The Marine Aquarium by paletta I believe... Is a great one.

Start researching and organizing your list. SW is a big responsibility and requires a lot of planning. Once you get your foundation of understanding, come back to refine your plan specifics.
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Old 01-21-2012, 09:08 PM   #3
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I find internet better than most books. What you need will depend on the type of tank you want, remember buying something of a better quality is better than buying one and needing to upgrade later.

You will need a refractometer since most hydrometers aren't very accurate and a good test kit get your own liquid test kit don't depend on the lfs for test results.

RO unit I consider important because it saves me hours of running around getting water for my tank. Always start your tank right with RO water so you hopefully won't have the horrible algae outbreaks others have had.

The rest of the equipment will depend on what you are wanting in your tank. Any light will work for a fish only tank if you are going to do things like coral, anemone, or clams you will need a good quality of light.

Part of the filtration of saltwater tanks is live rock and sand. Figure between one and two pounds per gallon. Research and figure out what kind of fish you are wanting some fish need deep sand beds to sleep or even live.

Skimmer would be nice finding a decent hob skimmer is nearly impossible for me.

ATO is nice to have but you can always top off once or twice a day.

Setting up the tank properly will make a big difference in the years to come. Take your time because only bad things seem to happen fast in saltwater tanks.
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Old 01-21-2012, 09:34 PM   #4
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Important reading

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Originally Posted by The_misteak11 View Post
Yes i recently got a 45 gallon tall tank and i want to turn it into a salt water aquarium wat is a good basic list of what i will need to start. I have a good filter and heater but what else do i need to start off good?
Back in the "Good Ole Days", I used to make every customer wanting to start a saltwater tank, read a book called "The Marine Aquarium In Theory And Practice" by TFH Publications. It not only told you what to do but WHY you're doing it. It's a good read if you can still find it. Most people don't know why they need to do certain things and that's where all the confusion comes in. When you know the WHY, it's much easier to learn the HOW.

The internet is a great place to find things when you know what you're looking for. Books can help you get to that point.

My first saltwater tank was in 1969. It had a metal frame and a slate bottom. I lived near the ocean so I got saltwater for free all the time. Now, have the internet tell you why this shouldn't work out. The above mentioned book can.

Learn before you do.
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Old 01-21-2012, 11:52 PM   #5
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That book is available through amazon. I noticed there was nothing about a skimmer listed in the index of the book, I don't know if it was part of filtration or not. I see where it lists a hydrometer but not a refractometer.

I know a few people that actually use ocean water in their tanks however it is tested regularly and if there is anything wrong with the water in it is off until it clears up.

Back in the good old days of stainless steel frame tanks and slate bottoms I use to get water from the river for my freshwater tanks today I would never go to that same spot to get water because of pollution. It was probably a good thing I grew up in ND where all we had was freshwater.
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Old 01-22-2012, 12:15 AM   #6
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That's my point....

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That book is available through amazon. I noticed there was nothing about a skimmer listed in the index of the book, I don't know if it was part of filtration or not. I see where it lists a hydrometer but not a refractometer.

I know a few people that actually use ocean water in their tanks however it is tested regularly and if there is anything wrong with the water in it is off until it clears up.

Back in the good old days of stainless steel frame tanks and slate bottoms I use to get water from the river for my freshwater tanks today I would never go to that same spot to get water because of pollution. It was probably a good thing I grew up in ND where all we had was freshwater.
That's my point, the book would tell you what was wrong with this scenario.
As for hydrometers vs refractometers, I used nothing but a hydometer. Even if it was off by a small percentage, I had fish living for over 15 years and corals reproducing so it couldn't have been that bad.
As for using skimmers, if it's not in the most recent edition of the book, that would be what the Local Pet Store (not the big box stores) would be for. They are the ones who are keeping the fish so they should be able to fill in the blanks.
I've gone to many a store and have seen the "new way" of aquarium keeping. I haven't seen anything new in the WHY department, just the HOW department. That's why I recommended this book. It fills in the why. Today's technology may be good but I've heard about more problems with the electronic "gadgets" than I ever heard about a color coded test kits or mercury based thermometers or a paper filled hydrometer.
Just one "Old Fogey's" opinion
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Old 01-22-2012, 01:00 AM   #7
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Thank you guys ill look into that stuff thanks
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Old 01-22-2012, 02:26 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy Sager View Post
Back in the "Good Ole Days", I used to make every customer wanting to start a saltwater tank, read a book called "The Marine Aquarium In Theory And Practice" by TFH Publications.
I just bought that book on e-bay for $.99 w/$3.99 shipping. I'm about to get my learn on!
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Old 01-22-2012, 06:41 PM   #9
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Enjoy...

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I just bought that book on e-bay for $.99 w/$3.99 shipping. I'm about to get my learn on!

...the read. I guarantee you that book saved me thousands if not hundreds of thousands of dollars in fish. (I was an importer/exporter with a 25,000 gal facility.) Whatever you don't understand, ask the professionals!!!!
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