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Old 09-07-2002, 08:15 PM   #1
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Purchasing and setup of new aquarium

Hi, I am an Australian now living in Des Moines Iowa. Back in Oz I had a nice setup. Here I don't have anything. Locally there isnt a lot on offer in the mid price range ($200 or so). Ideally Id like a nice big 4 foot tank and stand, however I am looking to compromise for budgets sake!

This leads me to what I found today. Des Moines has 2-3 local aquariums and Petco and Walmart. It looks like Walmart has the best deal on a sizable tank. A kit that includes lighting filtration and the tank for $160 and then a stand for $70. All up justifiable from a money perspective.

Of course I don't have all my nice equipment which is still in Oz running in my parents place. I just want to create something nice to look at in my office, and maybe breed something so my daughter can experience it all. She is three and loves fish.

Now my question is "Is the Walmart solution a good one?"

Any feedback or alternatives ar appreciated.

Thanks
Nathan
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Old 09-07-2002, 10:28 PM   #2
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Well not sure about the Iowa wal-marts but the ones here in VA have a 55 'starter' kit and that is about as big as the tanks get at wal-mart. Is this size what your refereing to?

If your handy you could build a stand for cheaper than $70 and it would be much better than the thin iron stands I have seen in the local wal-marts here.

I don't see anything wrong with buying a tank from wal-mart. I have a 20 gal tank that I got from wal-mart back in 1997 and its currenly housing my mini-reef.

You can always look online for equipment aside from the actual tank itself.

The two websites I like for dry goods are www.thatfishplace.com and www.petwarehouse.com
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Old 09-08-2002, 07:02 PM   #3
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i dont' know from personal experience, but when researching a problem with my 55 gal, i found several posts in different sites that referred to a leaking problem with those tanks that have been set up awhile--the walmart tank that is--my suggestion would be to watch classifieds and you could probably pick up a nice stand , tank, and canopy, etc. for less than 200---patience is a virtue! lol, but if you are in a hurry, buy it and a tube of silicone!
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Old 09-09-2002, 10:57 AM   #4
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I have the 55 gallon from walmart, and its been set up about 5 months and i have not had any problems with it so far. The hood and the lights it comes with aren't to bad either. The aqua-tech filter it comes with has not given me any problems nor has the heater. So from my experiance so far i would say that the walmart tank is fine.
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Old 09-09-2002, 05:45 PM   #5
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I have the 55 gallon tank combo from wal-mart as well and it has been doing fine so far. I've had it for a couple months now and the filter, lighting, heater have been fully functional. Th estand I also got from wal-mart has done really well, it is not iron as in Aarons part of VA. It is solid black and held the weight of the tank and deco without so much a a creek.

Be sure if you get the tank, to get a few extra necessities. I don't think anyone should be without an air pump! Even goldfish! I'm working on putting a 4 way split betta tank together and even they will have air curtain in it. I say go for it! Have fun.
:P Melissa
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Old 09-09-2002, 06:42 PM   #6
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Thanks for all your opinions. It is indeed the 55 Gallon Walmart tank. And it was also the black wood stand.

I have read the classifieds here and trolled the garage sales with no luck. I am sure if I stay patient I may find something sooner or later.

Ideally I want this nice 48W by 24D by 24H tank but with a stand it is over $500 with no accessories. perhaps I can ask Santa for it, and the birthday fairy.....and if the easter bunny chips in too I am set!

I think it will be Walmart to start with and just see how it goes from there. I will let you all know how it progresses, I am in no rush though!
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Old 09-09-2002, 06:58 PM   #7
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OH, that would be a very nice tank. According to our handy dandy calculators here on this site that comes out to be a 120 gal tank.

That would make a great size.
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Old 09-09-2002, 07:07 PM   #8
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Hold out for the 120. The 48" 120 is a favorite size of mine. It would make a beautiful reef tank, nice and deep and you would still be able to reach the bottom. Light it with 2 or 3 250W MH and you're all set!

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Old 09-09-2002, 08:32 PM   #9
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Yeah it would be nice. Convince my wife and you guys and gals have a new friend for life!

BTW I am more into freshwater fish than salt water.

Has anyone tried a biofilter with a freshwater tank? The ones I have seen back in Oz are like a tank that sits underneath your stand. However I have seen closed units here on the web and in stores. expensive but they look cool! I hear you don't have to clean your tank as much with a bio filter, just the regular water changes.
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Old 09-09-2002, 09:43 PM   #10
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Biofilter

Yes, I have a biofilter hooked up to my 45 gallon in the basement (the test tank with soil substrate). I had it from my old salt, fish-only tank. I was never very succesful with salt, so gave it up long ago.

I really dont think it is any better than a cannister filter, and here's why. It is hooked up to an overflow type device in the tank, which only extracts from the surface. All mulm still sinks to the bottom, so you still have to vacuum. Also, the air and water are constantly being mixed, which you are supposed to avoid with a planted tank, as id drives off the CO2 that is in the water, leaving plants with very little.

Well, it is easier tio clean the filter material than a cannister, and it does look cool, and I think it would be great for a tank with a very heavy fish load. I'm only still using it because I'm spending too much on this other tank right now to buy any more stuff.
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