New Member with questions! :-)
-Hi all. I actually found this forum while surfing HUNDREDS of informational sites this morning. My family (then I) ALWAYS had aquariums, all my life, generally ranging from 20-150 gallons, but all were freshwater. I've always dreamed of having a saltwater (you just cant get color like that in freshwater!) but figured I'd be 90 before I had the time & money to get a setup together :lol: as everything I've ever heard was that they were beyond difficult to GET up & running. So, beyond enjoying the work of others, I never learned much about them. Yesterday I won a raffle for a 57 gallon "reef ready" Edge aquarium w/stand (we'll need to purchase filter & light but I know what kind of *light* we need...& ya, I'm stoked lol!). I've been researching since about 7a & basically all it's doing is confusing & worrying me. I do now know that live rock must be "cycled" before we add to tank, & that we should wait an absolute minimum of 6mo before attempting to add any life beyond rock (& sand?) to be sure water is stable. I also know what kind of critters we'd eventually (normally at this stage, I wouldn't even be worrying about this but, considering everything matters to something else, incl "reef" vs "RWLS?"..I kinda think it's important...) like to have-although some I'm sure wont go together & that's about the end of my saltwater aquarium knowledge, sorry to say :oops:
-We do have an empty 30gal we can use for a "sump" although I'm still not quite clear on what, exactly, that is & if that's the "filter" I'm hearing about & not finding.
-I'm pretty sure "fish w/live rock" is what we'll have to go with..I'd love a full reef tank, but they sound pretty hard to start with & most of my fav fish apparently do NOT go well w/a reef, along w/quite alot of the cleaning crews.
If anyone has any input, experiences, ideas, etc I'd def love to hear them!
Well let me be the first (assuming I got to this thread first!) to say: WELCOME TO TFK!!!
OMG and you ended up here!!! :wave:
We're glad you found US, we have a wonderful SW section, and awesome SW members with TONS of experience.
"ReefingMadness" is one of our "pros", I'm sure he will be by to help!! He has of list of things you will need and is awesome at identifying critters that may have tagged along with the rock.!!
CONGRATULATIONS ON THE WIN!!!
Please start a build thread, we are highly addicted to threads like this, (all of us it seems). We love pictures as you will see as you read thru some of our threads... Pictures are required!! :lol:
hello and warm welcome.
Morning, I believe that I can help ya out here. And if there is anything else you need, just give a shout.
#1-Dry Rock, there are a few hitchhikers on Live Rock that people want to stay away from, so they opt for using Dry Rock, or Dead Rock. Macro Rock is a good place to start looking for that. Either way you go you will need a minimum of 1lb per gallon. You can use Fully Cured Live Rock, and have the tank cycled in just a few days also. Other way is to use just a couple of pounds of Live Rock and the rest Macro or Dry Rock.
#2-Replacement filter media like filter floss and activated carbon (if you get a filter) Which is really not necessary.
#3-Multiple Power heads (2 or 3) 10x your water volume for just a Fish Only With Live Rock, and at least 20x your water volume for a Reef Tank. So lets say your going reef, and you have a 100g tank, you would need flow in that tank at minimum of 2000gph, or 2 1000gph power heads.
#4-Protein Skimmer, rated at 2 times your water volume. Unless your tank is under 30g, in which case you can do 10% water changes a week to rid the system of detrius. But, you'll have to watch the water parameters close, if things go haywire, you'll have to do more water changes.
#5-Saltwater Test Kits. Reef Test Kit. Test for Ammonia, Nitrites, Nitrates, PH, Phosphates, Calcium, ALK and Magnesium.
#6-Saltwater fish food. Mysis Shrimp, Squid, Cyclopease, Algae Sheets, Romaine . Flake food is not really a good food to feed your marine fish.
#7-Aquarium vacuum. This one is iffy. Most don't use one, if you have enough flow in the tank you won’t need one
#8-Rubber kitchen gloves
#10-Two, clean, never used before, 5-gallon buckets
#11-Aquarium thermometer, digital being the best.
#12-Brush with plastic bristles (old tooth brush) - needed for cleaning the live rock if you don't get Fully Cured Live Rock.
#13-Power Strip, possibly GFCI outlets by the tank.
#14-Optional but definitely recommend getting a Reverse Osmosis or RO/Deionization filter for the make-up water, and a barrel for storing the water.
#15-Possibly a Quarantine Tank for your new fish. They sit in here for a few weeks to kill off parasites and bacteria, to keep it from getting in your main tank
#16-Heater rated for your size tank.
#17-Saltwater Mix. Marine Salt. Instant Ocean is the cheap Salt that beginners and Advanced use alike.
#18-Saltwater Hydrometer or even better a Refractometer, which is more accurate. There is also a Digital Meter that is way advanced if you have the cash.
#19-Aquarium filter (not absolutely necessary if running with adequate amounts of live rock, but nice to have if you need to use a mechanical filter or activated carbon, or GFO and such)
#20-Aquarium substrate such as live sand or crushed coral. Some go bare Bottom, others choose the 2-3" bottom, others, more advanced will try the Deep Sand Bed, which is over 6" deep.
Volusion Demo Store
Aquarium Nitrogen Cycle and Cycling. Methods for Ammonia, Nitrite Removal.
aquarium heater in Aquarium & Fish | eBay
power heads | eBay
NEW | eBay
MarcoRocks Aquarium Products
Bulk Dry Live Rock & Live Sand - Bulk Reef Supply
Live Rock and Live Sand: Live Saltwater Aquarium Rock and Sand
Fish & Aquarium Supplies: Marine Substrates, Sand, Crushed Coral, Live Sand
Aquarium Lighting, Light Information; Reef & Planted, PAR, Watt, Kelvin.
What Your Coral Needs | Successful Reef Keeping
t-5 lighting | eBay
cree led aquarium | eBay
Aquarium Salt Mix: Salt for Saltwater and Freshwater Fish Aquariums
Aquarium Water Testing: Aquarium Pharmaceuticals Reef Master Liquid Test Kit
Reef Aquarium Care: Kent Marine Liquid Calcium Supplement
Saltwater Aquarium Buffer: Kent Marine Superbuffer-dKH pH Buffer and Alkalinity Builder
Once the cycle of your tank has taken place, your ammonia, nitrites are 0 and your nitrates are below 0, you may add critters, or a CUC, meaning a Clean Up Crew, and a fish. After 2 weeks you will be able to add more fish, and 2 weeks after that, whatever left you want to add, fish wise. Its best to let th tank mature some before adding corals, so after 3 months you could add easy to care for corals, zoas, toadstools and such, but i'd wait for up to 6 months until you add anything of cost. After 6 months your on your way, and can pretty much add anything, if your lights are up to the task that is, that you want to.
Hey Newbie603... don't be frightened off by Reef's list... it is quite possible that a lot of the items you won in your new tank set up are on the list of needed things. Once you get the set up at the house, make a list of the items you receive, i.e. what filter and size, what skimmer, brand and size, etc etc and post back here for Reef to review with you to his master list. Then he can advise what you still need and how to start setting up.
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