Saltwater Reef. This is a long term project that I have been working on for some time now. I've had the tank for a few years now.
I actually had a 55g that I was getting ready to add water to for a FW
setup, and while I was out at the LFS
, I came across this tank that he was selling for cheap cause it has a chip on the corner of the glass. I inspected the tank and the chip doesn't effect the integrity of the tank/seals at all.
So, $200 later, and it was in my basement waiting for me.
I also confirmed no leaks/integrity by filling the tank with water and running a bare bones pump/filter system for over a month. I figured if there was a leak, I could reseal the tank and still have a great deal.
So I sold the 55 setup for $250, and started studying to be a saltwater tank hobbyist.
It will probably be another year until its completed cause I'm a big DYI type of person. Anything that I can build here at home will be done by me. I pretty much have everything planned out except for the lighting. I have been following several threads for LED
setups, and should be comfortable in designing a system soon. By the time I'm ready to complete a finished schematic for it, there will/should be plenty of info on the web about perfecting it.
I'm going with a sump design from melvsreef.com
The Model F Design - http://www.melevsreef.com/acrylics/sumps/f/sump_f.html
I designed my inner stand dimensions around the dimensions of that sump. It houses the Protein skimmer, return pump, and Refuge. Sadly, I didn't plan for a "top-off" tank. I'm thinking of a slight modification to the sump, adding 3-4" to the length. This way I can have a totally separate compartment/tank on the right side of the sump that will house approx 5g of top-off water. With a float switch and a small pump, the top-off water (pre-made) can be pumped directly into the sump. I will put up an image of the "modified" design later or tomorrow to show what I have planned, and get opinions.
Check out this posting on craigslist that I came across the other day. It's actually a really great idea, and is somewhat like what I did with my stand by building the "Skin/Facia" separately. If you can make something like this, or find a local woodworker or a friend that's willing to do it, it totally changes the way you look at a tank. You get the strength of the metal stand and the "eye-candy" of a natural wood stand at a lesser out of pocket cost.