You can get live rock from a lot of places. A local saltwater store will usually have live rock. You can get it online but beware that shipping is usually quite a bit because if you buy it cured its heavy.
The rule of thumb is that you want around 1 -1.5lbs of live rock per gallon for proper filtration. Unfortunately that makes it very price to purchase all that at once. So many people mix in some base rock (uncured) with some live (rock) i would suggest going 50 50 with cured and uncured or ever 1/3 cured 2/3 uncured. uncured is going to be considerably cheaper.
I know others have a few good places they like to buy LR
online so i will let them post some links.
Check ebay for a RO
system. The have some decent ones for not to bad of a price. Also check melevsreef.com i think he still sells them and his site has TONS of info on every thing you could want to know about setting up a salt tank. Also you will want a good refractometer instead of a hydrometer because they are inaccurate. Check ebay for that too.
Drilling is usually suggested because it is failsafe and then you don't have an overflow hanging on the back of your tank but either way will work. Many people have overflows that are 99% failsafe anyway. I wouldn't rule out drilling though. It is very simple if done right. Someone will provide a link to you if you wanna go that route with step by step instructions from when they did it.
Good sumps can be purchaced online or at your local fish store (LFS
) but the are probably cheaper online. cheaper is a relative term though cuz they are very expensive. Probably looking at 350$ for a decent sump for a 75 would be my guess. Building one out of another tank and some glass and silcone will probably only cost you 150-175$ so its worth considering as well. Again if your interested in doing that we have a few threads on step by step (AA has all the answers don't worry) If you do buy one it is recommended to stay away from socks/filter pads/sponges unless you want to change them roughly every week or the leech back bad things into your water.
A refugium if you get one going is very helpful and highly recommended for the long term success of a reef tank. Lots of people get by without them (incuding me at the moment) but it will save you a few head aches by setting one up. The export nutrients from the water and help control algae if you get some macro going in there.
We have a ASMg series on our tank and it is working out great. Go to the search tap on the top and search protein skimmers and you will find any of a dozen threads that have lots of good recommendations for you.
You will definetly want to get your own set of test with out a doubt. You will need to test fairly frequently with a new tank till it settles down and you get the feel for the tank. Even a tank with that has been up for 10 years still needs to be tested from time to time. You will have a big investment in this tank do not skimp out on this one. Get your self a good set of tests. The LFS
will most likely just have some strips for quick test which aren't great. (looking back you may have meant that you knew where to get them. if this is the case then your all set)
As for lights you should do a little research and figure out what kind of corals you will want to keep. If you just want soft corals and mushrooms then you can go relativly low light. If you want SPS
and hard corals along with clams and anemones you will need high light and should consider looking into metal halides and T-5's. So get back to us on that and we will be able to help you more.
Look around on some sites online and they have all kinds of additions little pumps that go in your tank for more flow. There are also wave maker units (alternating your pumps on and off on a timer and such) if you wanna get fancy.
Good luck and welcome to AA. Just do your homework and ask a lot of questions before you do thinks. Salt reefs take a long time to get right. Its a slow process.