30 Gallon FOWLR - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 11 Old 05-13-2010, 05:15 PM Thread Starter
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30 Gallon FOWLR

I was just wondering what the approximate cost would be if I were to start a 30 gallon FOWLR minus the cost of fish because I dont know what I would want. I already have a 30 gallon tank and an Aqueon 30 quietflow. Not sure if this would be an easy question to answer because of the many options though.
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post #2 of 11 Old 05-13-2010, 08:32 PM
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cost is a relative term when it comes to salt... some told me to start my reef would be $50 and others have said $1000.... so far (1 and 1/2 months in) i am up to $375... and that is with little live stock... but i have DIY a bunch of stuff, already had the tank, and went with base rock with very little live rock to start due to cost.... but it can be done cheeper or way way more expencively... you have to shop around nad really take the time to do somethings your self as apposed to buying them.... for example my lights cost me $40 how ever if i bought a comparible set up at any of the LFS in the area i wold have spent $175 or more....

Back in the Game!!! Live Bearers in a 40 Breeder
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post #3 of 11 Old 05-13-2010, 11:11 PM Thread Starter
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What kind of DIY stuff did you do?
Does the tank have to have live sand or could play sand be used?
Im guessing you have to have atleast a few peices of Live Rock to get the tank going, right?

Last edited by Zeetrain; 05-13-2010 at 11:19 PM.
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post #4 of 11 Old 05-14-2010, 07:20 AM
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well what i have done in my experience is this....
bought 45 pounds of live sand (don't use play sand, everything i have read on this says its really bad for salt water tanks)
i bought 45 pounds of base rock (though if you are patient you could make your own for around $30 and have way more than enough)
i bought 5 pounds of Live rock
bought 2 power heads (you can get them really cheep on line)
i had to buy the salt (now i use instant ocean because of all the good things i have read about this product but there are others out there)
i had the 29 gallon tank on hand and also the all glass hood and a light fixture (more on this part in a moment)
i wanted better lighting but the prefabed stuff is SUPER expensive in my opinion. so i want to Home Depo and got two of those daylight theropy desk lamps... decided i did not like the look of them sitting next to the tank and tore them down to make a wood hood with the lights build in (re-doing this project as we speak as i said i was in a hurry for the lights now i am building for looks also LOL) now this means i have natural sunlight synthesized for $40 instead of $200+.... hhmmmm not bad
i was given a skimmer from a friend (temp for now) even though i dont really need one but i am also in the test phases of two or three skimmers i made my self (first two were horrible failures LOL)
i am constructing a sump this week end from a 20 gallon long a friend found at a tag sale in the free pile (water tested and works fine!!!!! just a little vinegar bath and all is well)
you can get a lot of stuff in really good trades with some LFS, other people in your area that share the hobby, and on line (lots of places here!)

Back in the Game!!! Live Bearers in a 40 Breeder
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post #5 of 11 Old 05-14-2010, 08:44 AM Thread Starter
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So only live sand should be used?
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post #6 of 11 Old 05-14-2010, 09:04 AM
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live sand or dry sand that is made for Marine tanks... then seeded from other land or LR.. just not play sand the silica with cause chaos in your tank

Back in the Game!!! Live Bearers in a 40 Breeder
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post #7 of 11 Old 05-15-2010, 01:05 AM
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Crushed Coral can be used also for substrate but its always better to go for live sand either 1" depth or Deep Sand Bed 4 to 6" depth. Dont make your sand 2". It has a scientific problem.

Happy to see your tank flourish like ours.

1 Electric Blue Damsel
1 Percula Clownfish
1 Red Legged Hermit Crab
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post #8 of 11 Old 05-15-2010, 09:13 AM
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I've had a lot of luck with Craigslist and Ebay. Saved TONS of cash.
Not sure if you've had any experience with either site, but just be careful and watch out for junk and scammers.

custom 7ft 125g softie/leather Reef
44g marine predator fowlr

100g outdoor pond/waterfall
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post #9 of 11 Old 05-15-2010, 09:24 AM Thread Starter
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@bearwithfish - Ok so no play sand.

@zaitmi - Are you saying to put 1 inch of live sand then put 3 or 4 inches of marine sand or crushed coral on top of the live sand? or put 1 inch live sand and 3 to 4 inches of a combined marine sand and crushed coral mix on top of the live sand?

@trukgirl - I havent had too much experience with either site but my father uses ebay quite a bit and would let me use his account if i needed to.
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post #10 of 11 Old 05-19-2010, 05:07 PM Thread Starter
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So if I were to get like 20 pounds of live rock and then filled in the rest with base rock, could I put just marine sand and crushed coral or aragonite mix, no live sand?
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