Your initial equipment looks good for a basic FOWLR
setup, I am new to this hobby as well and like you did not want to spend a fortune on my learning experience! But have slowly realized that even the basics are getting expensive ... I think I have hit $500 and don't even have my LR
yet !!!!!!!! 8O 8O 8O
If you plan on keeping any corals that need extreme light, you may want to go ahead and check into some PC
lighting. If not then just check out www.hellolights.com
and look into getting a NO
10,000k & a NO
Blue Actinic! Both of these are a tad better than your normal florescents. This is what I did!
You should check out www.premiumaquatics.com
for your substrate, they have some real good prices on sand. From what I have read on this board and doing research on my own ... sand substrate is the best thing as it will help with the filtration! There is a link to "calculators" up top, put in your numbers and how deep you want your sand bed and it will give you the exact amount of sand you will need! a common number everyone agrees to is 3.5/5 inches deep ... I know for my 29 gallon I needed 65 pounds of sand to get a 3.5inch DSB
I don't know if you plan on going with any LR
, although I would suggest it ... again this will help with the biological filtration! LR
can be pretty expensive depending on if you follow the 1 or 2lbs per gallon rule ... check out www.hirocks.com
for some nice base rock and www.liverocks.com
for some nice live rock! With LR
you need some real hefty water flow. Get some PowerHeads to do the job, everyone here seems to agree that MaxiJets are the best and try to get at least 10 to 15X the amount of your tank in GPH
. to give you an idea again in my 29 gallon I am running 2 MaxiJet 900's rated at 230gph flow ... so that adds up to 460gph almost 20 times the size of my tank!
Read into the "fishless" cycle method in the articles at the top of the forum, there is some good knowledge in there! Research, research, research and then when you think you couldn't possibly know anything more Research again! Trust me there is more than meets the eye in this hobby!
If there is anything I missed, I'm sure someone after me will catch it and give you a heads up ... good luck!