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Discussion in 'Introduce Yourself' started by JC McDonald, Sep 24, 2013.

  1. JC McDonald

    JC McDonald

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    Hi Guys

    I'm Brand Spanking new here and to Reefing. I will Happily take the title of Noobie. We have been debating on starting a Reef Aquarium For About 6 months, and today we came across a 125 gallon, 6 foot tank with stand at an extremely reasonable price and are going to dive in head first so to speak. Tomorrow Starts a new day for us. Years and Years I've had South American Cichlids, but it's time to graduate. I am open to all suggestions. And am looking forward to getting started. What is the first thing that should be done, besides cleaning the new tank lol!

    I just wanted to say this site is awesome. I think I've learned more in the couple of hours that I've spent on here, than in the previous 6 months I've spent reasearching all over the net. Thanks for having this site!

    JC
     
    JC McDonald, Sep 24, 2013
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  2. JC McDonald

    ErinCahir Sausage Wrangler

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    Hello and welcome!!

    I suggest poking around the site a bit, check out some build threads to give you some ideas and research, research, research!
     
    ErinCahir, Sep 24, 2013
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  3. JC McDonald

    JC McDonald

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    Thanks So Much. That's what I'm doing right now. I'm excited but I don't want to do so much to fast. Do it right or don't do it at all is going to be my motto!
     
    JC McDonald, Sep 24, 2013
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  4. JC McDonald

    ErinCahir Sausage Wrangler

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    It's an excellent motto to have. Especially in this hobby.
     
    ErinCahir, Sep 24, 2013
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  5. JC McDonald

    rrbigdog

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    I agree (research). I have had FW tanks for years and started a SW about 7 months ago and so glad I did. I have changed so many things since I started just 7 months ago. If you are going to run a sump (and you will) make sure you have all the plumbing worked out. I have a 125 FW with a hang on overflow which I would get rid of if I change it to SW. In fact I am thinking about breaking it down and drill it for overflows. My 65g SW was reef ready and the built in overflows work so much better.
     
    rrbigdog, Sep 24, 2013
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  6. JC McDonald

    AquaFX

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    Welcome JC I just joined yesterday and everyone has been awesome so far! So to throw my two cents in don't do anything fast with your tank, take your time setting everything up and ask questions if your not sure of anything! Like Erin said poke around there is a world of knowledge out there and tons of knowledge here on LR
     
    AquaFX, Sep 24, 2013
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  7. JC McDonald

    JC McDonald

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    I'm from FW too...Cichlids. My Cichlid tank is 75 gallons. It is an environmental river aquascape for South Americans, no pirate ships or treasure chest here. I also run a 15 gallon Blue Ram Breeder tank. But So far I have an empty125 tank on a stand For my new SW. lol. Slow and easy is one of the mainstays that I've see here and I completely agree. (Especially with the cost involved) I think it's awesome how all you guys come together and help each other out. Refreshing actually. I look forward to getting to know all of you better, and am already thankful for your insights. It's going to be an adventure that's for sure. My goal is to have a natural looking reef tank with corals, but I would like to have plenty of fish. We want to focus on fish and the symbiotic relationships they have in their natural environment with corals and other invertebrates; Clowns & anemones, Gobies & Shrimp, Cleaner shrimp & fish, and etc. I know that is a long term goal, but I'm am so ready to get started! So I pose to you a few questions

    My tank is not drilled and I'm not sure how comfortable I feel drilling it. I'm afraid I'm going to regret not getting it drilled. One question I have is if I don't drill it, how long will an HOB Overflow work? I don't want to decide 6 months from now that I need to drill it after spending the money on an HOB.

    I'm currently trying to figure out sump placement just to be able to get it moved into place and get the cycle started. Any suggestions on what size sump for the 125? Also can I start the cycle without having the sump set up immediately, since the Rock and Sand are the actually filter?

    Things I do know, I'm going to do a mix of Dry Rock & Live Rock to save $$ and the same with sand. But do you guys have a suggestion on Ratios for that. I was thinking 3/1 or 4/1? Will that be enough to start the cycle and not have to wait 3 months for it to cycle? I know the Dry Rock takes longer to cycle & 6 weeks is cool, but I would die from anticipation if I had to wait 3 months lol.

    And this is just kinda out in Left field, but I read that I don't need to utilize a Lid? I kinda chuckled, because I have a cat, and she loves my FW tank. (it is actually her tank if the truth be known.) It made sense because of the need to oxygenate the water, but I guess my question is can I do a partial lid or when I get to lights will they take care of that?

    Ya'll have a fabulous day, and I will talk to you soon
     
    JC McDonald, Sep 24, 2013
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  8. JC McDonald

    AquaFX

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    JC, I am currently using a HOB, its not a bad thing but its not a good thing either, its a pain to make sure there is a balance of flow. If you can get a drilled tank I would suggest it.. If not you will spend the first few weeks balancing the HOB levels to get it flowing just right, however it works fine for me with my wave makers i get good flow and have a good cleaner crew to keep my tank constantly filtered. I would also suggest getting some sand sifters of some sort since there will be no mid pull like in a drilled tank they will help.

    In regards to the lid thing.. I have 3 cats, you could optionally go with eggshell crate, they are called louvers and you can buy them from home depot and cut them to fit your lid. I on the otherhand have an open tank and my cats inherently know thats water and theyre not interested however ive seen plenty of youtube vids and I will eventually put the egg crate on.

    Also JC you can speed up the cycle process im not sure on the methots its been a while, but if your anything like me and are impatient as heck i had fish in my tank on day 3, lol. It all depends what you put in things like corals and delicate fish i wouldnt even attempt to do until your through a good cycle about 1 - 2 months. I know Chromis and Damsels are the hardy and can be thrown in almost right away, and there is a booster you can pour into your tank available at almost any local store that will boost healthy bacteria and stuff growth but again that part im fuzzy on so better let someone else offer their suggestion there.
     
    AquaFX, Sep 24, 2013
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  9. JC McDonald

    Becky Administrator

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    Welcome aboard! :)
     
    Becky, Sep 24, 2013
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  10. JC McDonald

    JC McDonald

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    Ha Ha! My cat thinks the tank is her personal fishing grounds, she sits on top, lays there watching the convicts dart around and on more than one occasion has taken a swim...Lol she so funny.
     
    JC McDonald, Sep 24, 2013
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  11. JC McDonald

    AquaFX

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    Well in your case I would Highly suggest a home depot trip lol
     
    AquaFX, Sep 24, 2013
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  12. JC McDonald

    rrbigdog

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    I did the egg crate from Home Depot thing. Just used a pair of wire cutters and made a perfect fit for the top. Was able to cut around any obstacles. I have a Hang on Overflow on my 125 FW but I find its a pain to keep the tubes from loosing siphon. I ended up drilling holes on top of the tubes and added a aqua lifter pump to remove air from tubes so I never loose siphon. But next time I break down the tank I am going to drill it. I would think a 40B would be a reasonable sump. 3ft long and provide enough room for equipment. Best thing is that you get one of those during a dollar a gallon sale at Petco/Petsmart.
     
    rrbigdog, Sep 24, 2013
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  13. JC McDonald

    AquaFX

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    aqua lifter pump you say huh... that would save me stressing out about my tank that's for sure! Wow google is amazing I may have to buy that system that has the built in overflow pump system and aqualifter built in that's cool as heck!
     
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2013
    AquaFX, Sep 24, 2013
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  14. JC McDonald

    rrbigdog

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    rrbigdog, Sep 24, 2013
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  15. JC McDonald

    AquaFX

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    Very cool!
     
    AquaFX, Sep 24, 2013
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  16. JC McDonald

    rrbigdog

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    My sump is only a 20g on this tank but it is compacted. You can see the pump on my 2.5g deerpark water container I use for my ATO. I also added a GFO to help with the hair algae problem I experienced. Just an example how I set it up.
     

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  17. JC McDonald

    rrbigdog

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    JC - Good Luck on the 125g. I just saw a 125g on craigslist in my area. Tank/Stand/Canopy/Lights/Sump for 450.00 and it already has two built in overflows. I might just have to take a look at it. LOL
     
    rrbigdog, Sep 24, 2013
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  18. JC McDonald

    JC McDonald

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    Lucky! Not a big call for that stuff on Craigslist around here. They were redoing the PetSmart here in town and were clearing a bunch of stuff out and I got the 125 with stand, lights, glass lids, and some other stuff I can use for my Fresh water tank for 375. All Brand new, I thought it was a pretty good deal. It is an early Christmas present, we actually weren't planning on starting this project until Christmas. The stand will have to have some modifications to accomadate the sump. But Overall pretty happy with the find especially since the tank is brand new. Good Luck! The size was important for us cause it was a requirement for me to have atleast one HippoTang (Dori Fish of course for the kiddos) The rest I actually get a say in lol. I wish mine would have come with a sump & overflows that would have saved a whole lot of headaches. Now I get to be creative.
     
    JC McDonald, Sep 24, 2013
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  19. JC McDonald

    Aquarian

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    Hi welcome.
     
    Aquarian, Sep 25, 2013
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  20. JC McDonald

    AquaFX

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    Yea down here in FL, you can find tanks for $1 per gallon almost all day long, I was lucky enough to get my complete with sump, stand, water, liverock and water so I kept it all so there was a minimal cycle.
     
    AquaFX, Sep 26, 2013
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