09-27-2008, 08:09 AM
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I have a 46 gallon bowfront, and I have spent around $2400 so far and still counting:
I am in the process of buying a $500 HQI combo light fixture (and that is my LFS guy being kind and giving it to me at wholesale).
I am spending another $250 for my overflow and pump, w/ plumbing.
And I have yet to buy all the corals I want.
This figure discludes all the regular maintenance for a tank, such as buying food and salt mix and supplements.
Is that 100 gallon reef ready? (pre-drilled for overflow?) I think this is the way I would have gone if I researched it a little better...but a pre-filter will have to do...
I am not trying to discourage you at all. But 100 gallons is over twice as many as 46, and coming up on the $3k mark, I feel like I need another $3000 easy. If you are patient and work from week to week (unless you have an infinite fish budget) then this could work for you.
Let's do a little quick math:
100 lbs of Live Rock @ $7/lb: $700
50 lbs of Base Rock @ $5/lb: $250
160 lbs of Live Sand: $200
Sump and Plumbing: $200
Lighting Fixture (I'm assuming t5): $400
Salt Mix: $50
Cleaning crew (Snails and Crabs): $100
8 Fish (ranging from $30 - $400, avg fish - $50): $200
Corals (ranging from $60 - $500, avg coral $75): $375
Food and Maintenance: $250 to start
This adds up to $2725.
If you spend $100 a week, it'll take 6 months to get the tank up and running. That is a good time frame for a reef tank to be established.
Since the begining of this project, I have kept an excel w/s with all my spending. It has helped in keeping a log of when I've added components or inhabitants to my tank also.
I hope this helps.