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Old 07-30-2014, 10:31 PM   #1
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200 gallon! set up advise welcome

Hello everyone. I am thinking of starting a 200 gallon tank!! And wanted to get any info I could on setting one up and maintaining it before I started. Anyone with experience with large tanks? Any tips youd like to share would be most appreciated. Maybe you did somthing one way then wished you had done it differently? Any problems you may have ran into and how you overcame them. What did you do for lighting and heating? I am planning on a reef tank. How much live rock/sand?

As you can see any advise or comments are welcome here. Thank you in advance!
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Old 08-07-2014, 05:53 PM   #2
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Talking to a guy about a 150 gallon tank (couldnt find any 200gals in my area).comes with heaters lights stand and alot of fine sand. He wants 400 for it. Hopefully pick that up this weekend!
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Old 08-07-2014, 06:17 PM   #3
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I'm in the same boat I just picked up a 210


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Old 08-07-2014, 08:44 PM   #4
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The one thing I regretted not doing with my first big tank, a 125g was to have it drilled. I have since upgraded most of my tanks and every single one is now drilled. Def makes life ALOT easier.
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Old 08-07-2014, 09:13 PM   #5
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I'm running two overflows 1.5 drains and 1 in returns my only down fall is not making my wet dry bigger


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Old 08-09-2014, 09:45 AM   #6
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As a SW noob, what difference does the drilling make? And why is it easier?

These are he sorts of things I will need to understand, once I talk the mrs into getting SW.


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Old 08-09-2014, 10:54 AM   #7
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A drilled tank looks better as you dont have all the stuff hanging off the back of the tank.
HOB overflows can fail causing floods. A drilled tank or (Reef ready) tank will have a higher resale value.

Big tank time!! Where will you place it? it's gonna weigh about 1200-1500 lbs.

Live rock or dry rock? LR will cost about $8-12 per lb dry $1.99-5.00 lb.
I use dry pukani from BRS 75lbs will be enough for a 150 add 2-5lbs of good live rock to seed the dry rock.
Substrate, most sand gives about one inch per pound So about 150lbs will give you a 1-1.5 in. sand-bed
Lights Here's the biggie buy the best you can the first time This goes for every thing dont skimp! or you'll be buying more later.
LED's are the way to go IMHO. the Tao Tronics will grow any coral you want.

Heaters and skimmers I run two 1k watt heaters in my system (235 gl.) Get a skimmer rated for 2x your system volume (total of tank and sump)
And the most important item in a reef system a good RODI system. Plan on spending $ 5-15 per gallon for a full blown reef system.
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Old 08-09-2014, 10:58 AM   #8
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Drilling a tank scared the hell out of me until I drilled my first drain hole. So much easier to plumb tank read a few threads here about the different ways of getting water into sump it dawned on me very quickly drill baby drill. Good luck would love to build a large reef!!!

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Old 08-09-2014, 11:54 AM   #9
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I already order three 165w LEDs off eBay for the time being my buddy who builds reef for a living said they do fine until I have the extra cash I'm going with 3/4 live rock per gal and 3/4 dry per gal as for my sand I think crushed coral is the way to go we'll see I haven't talk to the wholeseller yet I'm looking for my protein skimmer now I'm only running a 40 gal wet dry I want to get the reef octopus that's rated for 500gal


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Old 08-09-2014, 11:57 AM   #10
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As far as the RO system that comes later I'm going to have my buddy do the services for a while while I learnt he ropes I've never had anything this big

Working on it as we speak just got the tank level going to start hanging my canopy now any advice on how far I should hang the canopy from the tank


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Old 08-09-2014, 12:32 PM   #11
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I have used T5's and LED's if I were to spend the money again I would go with T5s. The color is better and coral looked better. They did not grow as fast but looked healthier for sure. There are more options with LESs but what it all comes down to are results.

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Old 08-09-2014, 12:41 PM   #12
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I have used T5's and LED's if I were to spend the money again I would go with T5s. The color is better and coral looked better. They did not grow as fast but looked healthier for sure. There are more options with LESs but what it all comes down to are results.

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Results with LEDs are the same as t5s. They all grow coral and provide good color. It can't really be disputed anymore. But if your parameters aren't kept constant and fluctuate it doesn't matter if you have the greatest lighting system in the world. They won't do well.


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Old 08-09-2014, 12:43 PM   #13
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Only sharing my experience with the two. I currently run a LED T5 combo just have had better results and like the look off T5s only better

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Old 08-09-2014, 12:45 PM   #14
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Only sharing my experience with the two. I currently run a LED T5 combo just have had better results and like the look off T5s only better

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Oh I know . Everyone has their own likes. The t5s do supplement LEDs phenomenally.


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Old 08-10-2014, 11:37 AM   #15
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I already order three 165w LEDs off eBay for the time being my buddy who builds reef for a living said they do fine until I have the extra cash I'm going with 3/4 live rock per gal and 3/4 dry per gal as for my sand I think crushed coral is the way to go we'll see I haven't talk to the wholeseller yet I'm looking for my protein skimmer now I'm only running a 40 gal wet dry I want to get the reef octopus that's rated for 500gal


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Thats a lot of light I hope you got the dimmable lol. I'd stay away from the crushed coral it tends to be large size grains that trap a lot of detritus. It needs to be cleaned a lot.
Iv'e found a fine grain of sand keeps any debris on the surface where the water movement washes it into the sump.
Im using pool filter sand in my 180 right now and love it It dont blow around and is fine enough grain that my gobies sift it with no problem

Good choice on the skimmer
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Old 08-10-2014, 12:00 PM   #16
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Lol yea I got the dimmable ones I'll look into the sand thanks ! 👍


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Old 08-10-2014, 12:07 PM   #17
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I agree about the leds vs t5's. I just switched my 180g back to t5's. I burned all my coral even on thelowest setting and corals just didnt do well under them. :-( I tried them but didnt like the leds. It's just a personal preference I guess. Though I will be paying more for new bulbs every year I think thats the way I will go for the immediate future.
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Old 08-10-2014, 12:34 PM   #18
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I like the LEDs because they don't produce as much heat


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Old 08-11-2014, 08:33 PM   #19
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Just picked up the 150 gal tank yesturday. It looks really nice. Its got a black painted background. It came with powerheads of various flow rates, a canister filter, heaters, some lights but they arnt the right kind so ill have to change those out. It also came with 150lbs of fine grain sand and decorative rocks and shells. And random odds and ends the guy had for his tank maintenance.
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Old 08-11-2014, 09:16 PM   #20
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Nice! If your using that sand be sure to rinse it very well.
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