Complete novice....

Discussion in 'New to Reefing' started by Lee, Mar 27, 2012.

  1. Lee


    Mar 27, 2012
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    Essex, UK
    Hi there, just here looking for some goes...

    I have decided i would like a pet/hobby but not sure what to do now. Essentially the situation i find myself in is that i cannot have a dog/cat or any other animal that needs to be let outdoors (no garden) but i do have the time to care for my pet. So i feel that something in a tank would be ideal for me and my family. I have a few ideas, possibly a lizard of some sort or fish (hence why i am here :D) I really like the idea of a large tank with reef etc. but obviously have no clue at the moment and I'm wary of committing to anything and then regretting it at a later date. I have done a little research tonight and will continue to do so over the next few weeks until i decide what i will do but from what i can gather it seems as though this is an expensive hobby and needs a lot of preparation time prior. :D So the main questions i have are whether having a second hand tank (or any other equipment) affects anything, what effect adding 1 or 2 things at a time has (in terms of equipment) if any and is buying a large tank for your first tank good/bad/not important. Im sure there will be more questions that will arise and the questions you ask me will help me to make a decision. Im currently thinking i would like to set the tank up over the next couple of months and make sure I'm totally prepared before getting any fish at all (which appears to be the advice given anyway but it also gives me time to prepare and buy everything i need before anything else).

    Sorry for rambling!
    Lee, Mar 27, 2012
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  2. Lee

    wontonflip I failed Kobayashi Maru

    Oct 10, 2008
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    VA USA
    My 125g was used :) I paid around $225 for it, and a tank like mine that's predrilled w/ built in overflows run around $500 new. At one point, all my powerheads, my skimmer, and pumps were used (I eventually replaced them as I got the funds, with new equipment). I soak everything in 50/50 vinegar/water and scrub them down.

    After your tank's cycled (do not use live fish...just toss a piece of shrimp or frozen fish food in there), you can add 1-2 fish in there at a time, giving yourself a 4-6 week gap before adding anything more. Rule of thumb is around 1 fish per 10gallons (but you also have to keep in mind the fish's requirements -- can't put a tang in a 10g hehehehe).

    Initially, yes, saltwater tanks are expensive. But right now, my tank's 3 years old, and I only spend money on food. I buy salt by the bucket for water changes, and it lasts me a few months. I have an RODI unit for my water. So I really don't spend much money on my tank these days.
    wontonflip, Mar 28, 2012
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  3. Lee

    chichimom79 reef junkie

    Feb 11, 2012
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    Southwest Missouri
    Buying large is good. The more water volume you have, the more stable your water parameters will be. Just don't go so large that the equipment you need is out of your price range. It's ok to get a used tank/stand- just do a leak test with freshwater before you fill it up with the good stuff. LOL If you want to start out fish only, you can wait and get the good lights for keeping coral at a later date. That's going to be one of your main expenses for a reef tank. Fish don't care what kind of light they are under. In a saltwater tank, your rock and sand will be your main filtration sources, usually supplemented with a protein skimmer. This hobby can pretty much be as much of an expense as you want it to be.
    Hope that helps, and I hope you decide to do the tank and join the community here!
    chichimom79, Mar 28, 2012
  4. Lee

    little_fish Moderator

    Mar 4, 2010
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    ABQ, NM
    Hello and Welcome!

    +1 to the ladies!
    little_fish, Mar 28, 2012
  5. Lee

    Trigger Happy

    Jan 22, 2012
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    Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

    If you decide to go with a salt tank you'll get good support here. I went with a second hand already running system and found it was economical and a great way to learn.

    Welcome and see you around.
    Trigger Happy, Mar 28, 2012
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