I am not going with a reef set up, at least not in the immediate future.
Yesterday was a long day, i drove a touch over 2 hours south to go pick up that tank system and am i glad i did. I got down there and the guy still had the tank up and running. Which solved my worry about some of the parts not working.
In the tank he had 2 clowns, a tang, 3 smaller blue fish i cant identify, a star fish and a bunch of little crab like things i cant identify. He had some type of coral leather finger lookin green thing and several other smaller ones. Since the tank was still running i asked what he was going to do with the water and the fish and plant(?) life, his plan was to dump the water and return the marine life to the pet store.... Well that wasnt a very good plan, so i got directions to the nearest hardware store, bought a bunch of 5g buckets and lids
Needless to say i bought his entire set up after some negotiating, with the exception of his live rock, that he would not part with. I had a friend go with me who has his own salt water tank, i brought him to help inspect the equipment, He is housing the tang, starfish and clowns and whatever the coral things were in his tank.
I drained most of the water into the buckets, left a couple inches in the bottom of the tank and hoped all the crabs and snails would survive the drive back.
Took me a couple hours to set things up in my house, put all the water back in, Had to run to Petco and buy 1 5g bucket of ocean water, to top off the tank and sump to prime the return pump. I don't think the tank is even going to turn over. It was about 2 hours before the tank completely cleared up after the dust from the crushed coral bed settled from filling it up.
We put the 3 small blue fish and star fish into my tank and looking at them this morning they look happy as can be, I can see about a dozen what i am assuming are lil crabs movin around the bottm of the tank. My salinity is right at .024
I was able to talk him into letting me have 2 small pieces of his purple covered live rock so as soon as my BRS Pukani rock arrives this week i will add my base rock in and hope his live rock seeds it.
Needless to say i am extremely thrilled. I was expecting just a empty tank/stand/and sump tank. I ended up with a complete working SW
system for about 1/3 of the cost i was planning on!