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Sakky

100% new to the hobby...

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Hi all,

Got interested in saltwater fish tanks about 40 years ago when my brother had a tank for about 3 years.  When my brother would go out of town, I was responsible for taking care of it.  I have always wanted to have one, and now is the time.  I have another friend on here that has been my inspiration on getting started in this hobby.  I have not bought one single thing yet.  Looking at one of the bigger Biocubes to start out on, so if you know of anyone who has one for sale, send me a PM.  Been looking through the forums and it's nice to see how friendly everyone is!

Cheers!

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Welcome!  At least if you have taken care of one before you know what you are letting yourself in for 🙂  Sounds like a good way to get started - there are a lot of folk on here with really nice biocube systems who would likely have some good advice. Good luck with your search!

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Welcome! Being that you are a beginner I would highly suggest staying away from a Biocube /AIO for your very 1st tank for several reasons.

1. Every little mistake you make (and being a beginner you will make them) will have a much larger impact on the system as a whole as there is less water.
2. The key to keeping a reef tank is "stability" and as mentioned above, a biocube will not assist you in any way at achieving that feat.
3. All in Ones limit you on your filtration options, while more experienced reefers may be fine with this, beginners need the ability to try new things to find their own success.
4. Are you familiar with protein skimmer or Algae Scrubbers? Nothing worth buying in those categories that will be effective in an AIO.
5. Most beginners start off stating they just want the bare basics and are fine with some clowns & softies, but as they grow in the hobby their interests broaden and its only then they realize they have limited their capacity with their initial setup, unless your tearing apart the lid you are limited to Power Compacts, The False wall is pretty much fixed and limited to its compartments and size. Though some may rip the lid off, throw a sump on with an overflow box and Frankenstein  it, a pre drilled tank could be had cheaper to begin with.
6.Expansion! If the reef bug bites you your going to want expand! The nice thing about putting money into good equipment and utilizing a sump is that when you do decide to go up a bit larger, if done right you can retain half the equipment saving you a lot of $$$ .
7. Lastly, everyone I know with an AIO including myself within time not necessarily regrets it, but begins to miss the standard tank with sump setup. I never really would have thought to mention this as its just something I laughed about and found similar with my friends, but I recently heard Mark Callahan (Mr. Saltwater Tank) mention this exact same thing! so obviously must not be the 1st to have come to this conclusion.

It's Awesome you have some prior knowledge about the hobby, that should help out some. My best advice to you is research, research, research and patience! In this hobby you will hear varying ways to do things, just remember nobody is necessarily wrong, we all just have different methods and routes to come to the same conclusion. While some ways may work for some it won't work out for others, you will just have to find the way that works best for you :) 

Good Luck!

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I got a flurry of excited texts today from Sakky aka John.. he scored a small setup today :)

It is always so nice to talk with people that are so new and excited about everything. I should have had him scrape coraline of my tank... lol.

congrats John and welcome!

Sent from my SM-G930V using Tapatalk

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Thanks Exodus for the time you took to write that.  I struggled with going with the smaller tank, as I have read how much more difficult it is to start out on a tank that small (although it is the larger biocube that I bought yesterday).  In the end, I wanted to start out with a tank that was a bit easier to water change and I also wanted a smaller amount of sealife so when I do mess up, the tolls will be smaller.  Perhaps a mistake, but I am still excited.  If it goes well, I have a feeling the biocube will be short lived for me.  Thanks Brian (pdxmonkeyboy) for helping me out!

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8 hours ago, Sakky said:

Thanks Exodus for the time you took to write that.  I struggled with going with the smaller tank, as I have read how much more difficult it is to start out on a tank that small (although it is the larger biocube that I bought yesterday).  In the end, I wanted to start out with a tank that was a bit easier to water change and I also wanted a smaller amount of sealife so when I do mess up, the tolls will be smaller.  Perhaps a mistake, but I am still excited.  If it goes well, I have a feeling the biocube will be short lived for me.  Thanks Brian (pdxmonkeyboy) for helping me out!

I'm sure you will do just fine :)

In going with the Biocube as your first tank heres my advice (especially since you already think you will be moving up) All In Ones are just that and nothing more. They are a system that is intended to run off the included filtration they provide. They Work great for Softies and LPS, and there are plenty of stunning Biocubes out there! Though as mentioned above most reefers (including myself) try to push them to their limits and modify them to add more options. I advise you save your money on any sort of protein skimmer including the Hydor, Cad-Lights, Tunze etc. The amount of adjustments and cleaning needed to keep them producing the small amount of skimmate they do is not worth it. Also stick with the default lighting it provides in the cover, don't blow a bunch of money retrofitting LED's as whatever you do in the end will not carry over to a new build. Besides the lighting is perfectly adequate for the corals meant for the tank.

If you want more flow look at an MP10 & return powerheads like cobalt 1200's they are equipment that you will surely use when you upgrade to a larger tank. You can dump a bunch of money into InTank products(They are great) but you won't even get half the price back when you upgrade. I have always religiously performed weekly water changes to help in stability, and I use a shallow sandbed with the expectations of pulling it out and replacing it within 2 years.  So I guess to summarize it up Keep up with weekly maintenance and when purchasing things for the tank keep the future in mind, it will soften the blow on an already expensive hobby!

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