New Starter - Needing advice

Discussion in 'New to Reefing' started by Apestyler, Apr 28, 2005.

  1. Apestyler

    Apestyler

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    Hi all,

    I am very new to all this and would like some advice on how to start out with a marine aquarium, first off I am looking for a decent book which will guide me through setting the tank up to eventually adding fish (I understand that you cannot add fish striaght away and what to do it right the first time and understand what is going on with the cycles etc).

    I have short listed the following tanks, your opinions on them (size, value for money etc) would be greatly appreciated.

    http://www.theaquariumshop.co.uk/ishop/1029/shopscr46.html
    http://www.theaquariumshop.co.uk/ishop/1029/shopscr49.html

    Thanks for all your help in advance!
     
    Apestyler, Apr 28, 2005
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  2. Apestyler

    minireefer

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    Hi Apestyler,
    Welcome to the forum.The tanks you listed are ok for fish ony(some small fish).Do to there lighting.for a reef tank you need to upgrade the lighting to at least a 120 watt power compact and maybe add a protein skimmer. here are some ebay links for lights.
    http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dl...ame=WDVW Here is a nice complete reef tank http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&category=20755&item=4375859086&rd=1&ssPageName=WDVW
     
    minireefer, Apr 29, 2005
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  3. Apestyler

    jhnrb

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    see thread newbies to reefing/ hello and welcome. couple good books listed there. hope this helps.
     
    jhnrb, Apr 29, 2005
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  4. Apestyler

    Apestyler

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    Thank you both for your quick reply. I will take a look at the newbie threads on my lunch break - What is the minimum size you would recommend for a reef tank, also do you know any good UK outlets for buying stuff, I will take a look at the auction that mini reefer posted but I'm guessing postage from the US -> UK would be expensive and very risky.

    I'm very impressed with the site - cheers people!
     
    Apestyler, Apr 29, 2005
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  5. Apestyler

    Chris

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    I would go with a minimum of 55 gallons (208 Liters). As an experienced reefer a 75 gallon (283 Liters) or larger would be much more desirable. The larger the better, more water volume means more space for waste, which means less water changes and less fluctuations in Nitrates, Phosphates etc. more room for mistakes.

    Also a typical 75 gallon vs a typical 55 gallon aquarium will give you much more depth in the tank and as you start buiilding the tank you will want the room and your fish will love you for it.
     
    Chris, Apr 29, 2005
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  6. Apestyler

    Apestyler

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    Thanks for the advice, makes it easier when browsing the Aquarium shops on the net, so I would be looking at somethink like this then;

    http://www.theaquariumshop.co.uk/ishop/1029/shopscr52.html

    Time to start saving and reading - I tried to find that book you recommeneded in some bookshops but can't seem to find it anywhere - I think I will have to order it from the US.
     
    Apestyler, Apr 29, 2005
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  7. Apestyler

    jhnrb

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    decide generally what you think you will want to keep and then get the largest tank your budget and situation will allow. you will pay a bit more up front but will not be wanting to upgrade later with the costs associated with that senerio of replacing equipment etc.
     
    jhnrb, Apr 30, 2005
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  8. Apestyler

    Apestyler

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    Thanks for all the replies and advice - I am going to an aquarium supplier today to have a look at what is on offer (Also taking the girlfriend along to show her what its all about - and convince her to letting me start it as a hobby lol!!! :roll: )

    Will keep you posted with how things progress.
     
    Apestyler, Apr 30, 2005
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  9. Apestyler

    jhnrb

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    update us on how it goes. good luck.
     
    jhnrb, May 1, 2005
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  10. Apestyler

    Apestyler

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    Well I went along to the local Auqarium supplier which was actually part of a garden center (I'll post the details of it in the other thread I started about UK Vendors) and managed to find the so called 'Aquarium Expert' there.

    He was quite freindly and was showing us what deals he can do on tanks apprently if we buy the tank and stand at the same time he will offer 10% discount - However it just tips on the 200 litre capacity. I wouldn't mind getting a slightly larger capacity one (following your advice aswell), so I have short listed the following tank;

    http://www.theaquariumshop.co.uk/ishop/1029/shopscr373.html

    The specifications are;

    220 Litres
    58.12 US Gallons
    48.39 UK Gallons


    From what you guys have said this should be suitable starter tank, for a mini-reef, invertibrates, and a couple of fish?

    I also picked up a book which I am reading through at the moment;
    'The Simple Guide to Marine Aquariums - Jeffrey Kurtz'

    I coulnd't find the one you recommended in the other thread anywhere. Hopefully it should be ok. I'm gonna finish reading the book, and then start making some decisions - One of the first things I need to test/find out is the strength of the floor (As I live in a upper-floor cottage flat), I am fairly confident this won't proove troublesome!
     
    Apestyler, May 1, 2005
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  11. Apestyler

    jhnrb

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    seems like so far you are progressing nicely. yes the 220 litre aquarium will do and allow you to have some fun and keep a few things you mentioned.
     
    jhnrb, May 1, 2005
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  12. Apestyler

    minireefer

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    like like a good start setup.If what to keep coral you will need to ugrade the lighting in the future.depending on the wattage of the light your getting with the setup you might be able to keep some mushrooms,but usually coralneeds 3-5 watts per gallon depending on what you decide to keep.check out ebay for good lighting deals when you ready.
     
    minireefer, May 2, 2005
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  13. Apestyler

    Apestyler

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    Right as its bank holiday today here in the UK I've been doing some shopping around for prices on stuff and have come up with the following preliminary list of equipment. Due to my budget I will have to buy it over time (maybe a couple of months) but once I've got it all together I can start ordering live rock, live sand, clean up crew, salt mix etc

    Here are the details (click on them for more details);

    Tank: Aquatlantide Evasion 100XL
    Filter: Hydor Prime 20
    Heater: Hydor Eth 200W (Scroll down towards bottom of page)
    Protein Skimmer: Unsure open to suggestions
    Lights: Unsure again ... Metal Halide or Standard UV? - As minireefer suggested 3-5w for corals this would mean upgrading to around 230w lighting.
     
    Apestyler, May 2, 2005
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  14. Apestyler

    Chris

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    Coralife makes some inexpensive power compacts at 48inchs delivering 260wats for about $220 here in the US. Not sure what they would cost in the UK, but it should give you plenty of light for soft corals. If you move into stony you will probably need to upgrade or move them to the top of the tank.
     
    Chris, May 2, 2005
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  15. Apestyler

    minireefer

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    for protein skimmers here are two good ones AquaC Remora and CPR Bak-Pak 2.If your budget will allow metal halide will give you the best results,but if not power compact lighting works well to.Thats what i am using
    on my small tank.The wife wont allow the purchase of a metal halide. :(
     
    minireefer, May 2, 2005
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  16. Apestyler

    Apestyler

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    Thanks guys appreciate your patience - Hopefully in the next couple of weeks I will be able to start purchasing the tank etc

    As for Metal Halide lighting if I did decide to follow that route would ~260W be ok or as they are more powerful would a lower wattage be ok?
     
    Apestyler, May 2, 2005
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  17. Apestyler

    jhnrb

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    for aquaiums up to 18 or so inches deep 150 mh should be good and if you are doing the 58gal and want hard corals 2 mh supplemented with 96 watt compact o3 atinic bulbs and 96 watt 65k compacts. if you use a 12+ or 14K mh bulb. just a guide line and opinion. you can start where ever you like and your lighting can be upgraded as you progress in the hobby. compacts will be ok to start if you have enough of them. there are some nice combo setups all in a case that is ventilated here in the us. maybe something like that would be right for you as chris mentioned. minireefer also had good advice. so 1st decide what you want to keep, then read up on their lighting and feeding needs and setup your aquarium to provide the correct environment for them. just my thoughts. hope something here helps.
     
    jhnrb, May 3, 2005
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  18. Apestyler

    Apestyler

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    Right ... Had a look at MH and they do seem pretty expensive, I think for now I will invest in some decent compact UV lights and upgrade to MH once I am ready to add some hard coral.

    One question though ... on the hood that comes with the tank is it a simple matter of changing the lights to higher wattage ones or do you have to install a unit within the hood ... is it simple to do?
     
    Apestyler, May 3, 2005
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  19. Apestyler

    minireefer

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    I found this on UK ebay.don't know if its in your budget.
    http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&category=46314&item=4377477366&rd=1
    you can try a retro fit kit but some time there a pain to install.You could look for a 48" compact florescent with 2 atinic and 2 10k or 12k bulb.The vendor that has the tank you want has a good light for reefing.
    http://www.theaquariumshop.co.uk/ishop/1029/shopscr237.html.
    This should be effiicient lighting (3.7 watts per gallon)for soft and some hard coral types.I have 4.5 watts per gallon and have a happy frogspawn and a sun coral that are types of hard coral.Maybe the vendor remove the exsisting lighting and you pay the differance.
     
    minireefer, May 3, 2005
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  20. Apestyler

    Apestyler

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    Cheers minireefer - Gives me a better idea of what to look out for

    However I another newbie question ... will I have to buy a larger hood to house the light in, or I suppose what I am trying to say is how do you stop yer fish from jumping out with no top cover on and that massive light above it as it looks incompatible with the cover that comes with the tank I am interested in?!
     
    Apestyler, May 3, 2005
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