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gopens

New in the game and need some help

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first off, i hope i am in the right are. if i am not, i do apologize and understand if this thread gets moved or deleted. with that being said, let me introduce myself. my name is ken, i am 29, and i live in southern oregon. i have been interested in the fish hobby for many years. growing up, i would do the whole 40 dollar set up (freshwater), and when my fish died, i was done for a few years, than i would make another attempt with the same problem. well sunday i decided to jump in head first, and did some research. today i made one of the biggest investments i have ever made for a hobby. i went all out and bought a 80gl bowfront w/overflow and a stand and hood. wow, i was shocked at the cash register. i paid more for this than i planned on paying for everything, including fish. anyways, i have a few questions for the seasoned pros out there. any help would be awesome. well the main question is i need a sump and a sump pump. i have seen some crazy prices out there. what would ya'll recommend for me to get. i am looking at something nice, but not to pricey. yet its going to do a good job. i definetly don't want to lose fish/corral because i was a cheap skate. so if anybody can recommend one to me that would be great. i am going to look on-line, so i would need a name and hopefully what type it is. also, does anybody know of a good on-line site were i can find them. i was going to use eBay, and maybe look for used. well i will ask more later. again, thanks for your time and help. Ken

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WELCOME!!!! I believe a little more research will be to your advantage, and your pocket book. Before you decide on a sump. You neet to know what other equipment you will need, the size/space requirements, like skimmer, to begin with. You have a HUGE advantage really. To start out right. Used equipment can be a very good thing also. Are you ready to begin?

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Hi there Ken!

 

First, you need to decide on some basic things so you will have a better idea of what you will be needing for equipment and such. What are your plans for this tank? Fish Only, Fish Only With Live Rock, or a full blown reef?

 

Is there something you are really wanting to keep in this tank? A certain type of fish or coral?

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thanks for the comments. i guess i need to learn tons more. i am thinking of doing a some corals and a couple fish. so i would not say a ref tank nor would i say a fish only tank. so i guess i don't know what i would call my tank, lol. well i will continue doing my homework. oh and blown65, i bought my tank in medford. i live in grants pass.

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Welcome! Nice to see a new face. As always feel free to post any questions. Check out our calendar for upcoming meetings and events. And like Blaine said we will do our best to help. Later Ryan

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What kind of fish are you interested in having? That will help us figure out what corals you can or cannot keep. Any particular type of coral that you're into? Do you like the colored sticks (SPS) or the movement of the softies? Are you wanting to have a clam someday? Would you like to incorporate a refugium so you can have macro algae for added nutrient export? Did you get a lighting system with your tank purchase? That will also be a big factor as to what corals you can keep.

 

Used equipment can really help out on the pocket book. This is not a cheap hobby! And it's even more expensive when you get something that isn't right for your system. Huh, Jay? (wife)

 

The big thing is to do your research and ask us questions. Even if you think it's a dumb question, ask it anyways! We want to make sure you are successful with your tank. Taking on the saltwater hobby can be a daunting and sometimes overwhelming task, but we're here to help you out.

 

When Jay and I started out, I did a lot of research. In fact, I reserached for over a year before we bought an established 72 bow. Then Jay hi-jacked my hobby. To this day I still do a lot of research. And I still ask questions. So don't be shy! Let us know what you'd like to keep and we'll advise you.

 

Oh, and Jody at Tidalzone... awesome stuff! For when you're up and running and your tank has cycled and matured a bit of course. :D

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again, thanks for the help. i am still not sure what i want to do as for as the theme i want to go with. i have seen some coral, that are amazing. at the same time, i have seen some fish that are equally amazing. when i first looked into the hobby, i thought i would just choose a few fish and a few coral, and that was that. but now i see only certain fish can work with coral and vis versa. i am so confused. i have been reading that a sump is not necessary. but someone at the pet store told me it was a must, not an option. besides i was told i have to have one now i have a tank with an overflow. well i guess i am going to learn soon. i am ordering my live rock today. but first i need to find out what sump and sump pump i need. is there a universal one that would work. or are there ones that do certain jobs i.e. better for coral, or better for fowlr....

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Not to discourage you, but I wouldn't order any live rock until you have your sump, pump, skimmer, lights. The advice you've been given all ready is the best advice ever... SLOW DOWN! The biggest mistake you can make in this hobby is to be overly motivated. I've noticed that is when I make my mistakes. Nothing in this hobby comes quickly. That being said, I just ordered this sump

http://www.marinedepot.com/md_viewItem.asp?idproduct=BS1111

with a little modding, and an external skimmer you can use this as your refugium. I'm going to use it on my 72g bow front, so it should work for your purposess. Hope this helps.

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Not to discourage you, but I wouldn't order any live rock until you have your sump, pump, skimmer, lights. The advice you've been given all ready is the best advice ever... SLOW DOWN! The biggest mistake you can make in this hobby is to be overly motivated. I've noticed that is when I make my mistakes. Nothing in this hobby comes quickly. That being said, I just ordered this sump

http://www.marinedepot.com/md_viewItem.asp?idproduct=BS1111

with a little modding, and an external skimmer you can use this as your refugium. I'm going to use it on my 72g bow front, so it should work for your purposess. Hope this helps.

 

thanks for the help. i am trying to be patient. its just tuff, because i am so excited to get this going. i am going to do this right. it took a lot from me to not just buy everything yesterday. i knew i needed to get on-line and get some help from you finr folks. if anybody out there wouldn't mind chetting with me via pm or e-mail. i would love to get the chance to chat with you directly for some pointers and guidence. please let me know. thanks

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If you have your rock ordered. Great. now your gona need a skimmer. It looks like we are avoiding your question, but were not. You can get an external pump, or an internal. Now that didn't sound helpfull. The external will keep heat out. We hope you get a chance to go to your LSF. Take a picture with you of the stand with the door open and the measurment, some of the sumps need to be put in from the back, because of size. If you have 2 overflows, one at each end, each having 2 holes, again, you have severall options. 1st the standard. drain/return 2nd both drains, with over the back returns, this would give the tank more "turn over", as the Drain's are limiting to the pump size, anothe words, you can't put in more, than the drains can remove!!! The "SUMP" has severall purposed. 1st and formost. a power outage, pumps, all stops, and the tank drains to the overflow. That is also how you setit up when you do get it, 2nd shimmer, CA reactor, live rock ,probes etc. I'm not trying to confuse you. As your probably shaking your head right now, and may even have a few choise words to. Just want to see you cover all your basis, to make a better choise, first time.

 

 

AND PLEASE SLOW DOWN, Yes it is exiting. But, speed in this hobby is NOT your friend....

 

 

Pump, external, and quiet

skimmer, a RC type PC-r200

lighting, best you can affort

understand 1/2 to 3/4 hard foam, under tank, 1/2 inch hard foam can get at HD or lowe's

test kits

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Welcome to the site! Lots of info out there, its overwhelming huh. I know the feeling. Just take it slow, do your research and ask lots of questions!

 

Oh yah, buying used is a GREAT way to save a few $$$. reefcentral.com has a good used forum, we have one here, and craigslist.com has good stuff time to time.

 

Miles

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Welcome aboard.

 

First thing... If you haven't done so, go out and get a good book. I can recommend "Natural Reef Aquariums" by John Tullock and "The Reef Aquarium" by J. Charles Delbeek and Julian Sprung.

 

As my wife "spayne" said earlier, we research for about a year. There is alot to understand, but we can take it one challenge at a time. The sump has many purposes, one being increased water volume. The more water volume you have will help out with water chemisty in the long run. Another reason to have a sump is that you can "hide" all of your equipment ( skimmer, heater, etc ) in the sump instead of your display tank.

 

Sump Pump. Where are you going to set up the tank. This is important. If your tank is in the living room or the bedroom, you are going to want it as silent as possible. I would suggest an external pump, but they are not all made equal. Some are downright loud. And like CCR said, you don't want to exceed the amount of drain you have or your tank will overflow.

 

Skimmer. This is the number one rule in reefkeeping. DON'T SKIMP ON THE SKIMMER. Trust me on this one. Having a bad or undersized skimmer will make you frustrated and your tank won't like it either. Most manufacturers tend to overestimate their skimmers efficiency.

 

Lights. This is going to depend on what you want to keep. Different animals require different light. IF you are only going to keep fish, you do not have to worry about light. Get a light that appeals to you. If you are going to keep coral or clams, now you have some thinking to do. When you decide what you want we will talk lights.

 

Test Kits. You are going to need a good set of test kits. I would recommend Salifert. They are kind of expensive but they are considered the best by most enthusiasts. For starters you will need: Calcuim, Alkalinity, Phosphate, Ammonia, PH, Nitrate, and Nitrite. You like chemisty, don't you. :eek:

 

I hope I didn't scare you away. We are right here to help you out, every step of the way.

 

Keep us posted.

 

Jay

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Good info Chief...

 

I also recommend "Conscientious Marine Aquarist" for a good read...

 

IMO- Regarding test kits... For a fish-only system and/or prior to adding hard corals you can get away with just testing ammonia, nitrite, pH and specific gravity. When you are ready for corals you need to start paying attention to the rest of the parameters.

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You absolutly need to get a good book! Even if its a basic book like

this:

 

http://www.amazon.com/Conscientious-Marine-Aquarist-Commonsense-Successful/dp/1890087033/sr=8-3/qid=1158179320/ref=sr_1_3/104-4655809-2053529?ie=UTF8&s=books

 

Whatever you decide you need to do more research, everyone will tell you something a little different, figure out what corals you like ans what fish you like. Then research what kind of water flow you will need, refugium requirements, lighting for the corals. Its all up to what you like.

 

Get a good book and research, then visit multiple stores and check out their stock research the critters you want and make sure they are compatible.

 

Im also sure a few local reefers here would be happy to show you their tanks and give you some advice, but just keep in mind eveyone has their own way, so its up to you to do the research and apply the proper methods for what your hosting in your tank.

 

 

I find the reseach part intriguing, and confusing. Use some common sense and understand each living thing (how it eats and where it lives) and you will have 90% of the battle fought, and it will save you tons of money in replacing things, not only equipment you thought was right but also the lives of the critters you purchased.

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Also post up where you live, or add it to your profile, that way we can give you some recommended stores (sponsors) and maybe a few local people to contact.

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Good info Chief...

 

I also recommend "Conscientious Marine Aquarist" for a good read...

 

IMO- Regarding test kits... For a fish-only system and/or prior to adding hard corals you can get away with just testing ammonia, nitrite, pH and specific gravity. When you are ready for corals you need to start paying attention to the rest of the parameters.

 

Darren is absolutely correct about the test kits. And I can't believe I forgot about specific gravity ( salinity ). If you can, purchase a refractometer to test your specific gravity. Swing are hydrometers are not very accurate in my opinion.

 

Jay

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Also post up where you live' date=' or add it to your profile, that way we can give you some recommended stores (sponsors) and maybe a few local people to contact.[/quote']

 

I believe he is from Grants Pass. It has been quite a few years since I have been down there. I have no idea what kind of stores they have anymore. Jody at Tidalzone might be a good contact.

 

Jay

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well thanks for all the replies. i spoke with a member on these boards for over an hour today. it was awesome of him to do that. i am soaking all the info up. see, when i first made this post, i honestly had no idea what asump really was. so i was looking for a certain answer. but i relized there is no real answer. i have decided to go with a ref tank. maybe only a few refs and a show piece fish, with other little fellas. i found a chart that lets me know what would work together. also i heard that 2 pounds of live rock per gallon of water. does that sound right? thanks again ya'll

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