New to saltwater aquarium

Craig2051

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Hello,

I have recently decided to start a 75g reef aquarium. I am looking for advice regarding the best type of water to use when starting, amount of live rock needed, light recommendations for corals, and powerhead recommendations. All information will be helpful as this is my first attempt at starting a saltwater aquarium.

Thanks!
 

Reef Trends

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Is the 75 gallon reef ready meaning that it is drilled to drain to a sump below then have the water pumped back up? If using a sump a recommend a product called Cermedia which is a very porous fake rock. One 8x8x4 black will be enough surface area for bacteria to colonize and support your system. Meaning you can start out slow with live rock and add as you like and as budget allows. Also you will want some bacteria to start the cycle my favorite being Dr Tims One & Only Reef. For water use RODI (filtered) water it might be best to just invest in an RODI system and use brute trash cans to fill and mix your own salt water. Lighting probably LED or T5 but LED will be the best bang for the buck especially long term. Powerheads Vortech MP series or more budget minded Jebao. There is also a lot of equipment that gets posted here so you could score some good deals on used stuff.

Forgot to say WELCOME!
 

Spartanwarrior

Reefer Always Learning
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Congrats dude. Welcome! This hobby will be the most rewarding hobby you have, but also give you the most heartache. Prepare for the worst to happen, especially in the beginning. Learn your acronyms and jargon. Plenty of websites for that. Go to swaps. You can hear from the best, get expert answers, and just look at the pretty things. The CT Frag Farm on March 11th is an awesome venue if you have the means and time to get there. I started about 1.5 years ago and have learned so much from these lovely people here. I would start out by asking a few reefers for a "tour" of their setups. I learn the most when I'm picking up a piece of coral and just soaking in their setup and asking questions.

Some Highlights to my Learning Curve over the Years

Always use RODI water before mixing salt. Get the nasty stuff out before you add it to your aquarium. Best thing you can do starting out. 4+ cycle.
Don't rush. Let you tank settle and starting cycling before you add livestock. Research how to do this correctly.
TEST. Buy test kits. Phosphate, Nitrate. Cal, Alkalinity. PH. Ammonia. Nitrites. Specific gravity with a refractometer, not a hydrometer.
Salt choice depends on your budget. Reef Crystals are a bargain buyers best choice and is a good salt. Red Sea and Aquaforest (the latter I use) are the more expensive goods.
Always overskim with a Protein Skimmer. Buy one that goes about 1/4-1/2 over the total gallons of your entire system (75 gal I'd go to 110-125) More the better.
Generally, for lighting, hard corals (sps) are high light, LPS or softies are lower light. Flow also affects each differently.
Temperature is big too. Heaters and a chiller is recommended. Keep at about 77. Everyone runs a different temp but this seems to be the avg. Keep it stable.
Decide if your running a sump or not. Possibly with a refugium.
Phosban Reactors are great to start out with if you can't afford a skimmer right away. Good stuff.
I use a Maxspect Gyre for flow in my tank (65 gal, relatively small dimensions) and I really like the power it gives. There are lots of different options here.
Lighting I can't help you with too much...there are so many options out there. LEDS are the newest and most efficient, but you may want to supplement with T5, etc if you want to be heavy on the sps.

Starting out, I'd go with some easier LPS and softies first. They are a little more forgiving on lighting, alk swings, flow, and everything in between. SPS is finicky even to the most expert of reefers.

Buy lots of 5 Gallon Buckets with spill covers. You won't regret it.
Glass or acrylic algae scraper. Magnet ones are great. Buy some reef safe glue and epoxy. Bulk Reef Supply is a great outlet, MarineDepot too.
Put everything into a GCFI outlet. We've all been shocked in this hobby. You don't want it to kill you.

I initially "over-rocked" when I started out. Keep it clean and open with no dead areas and good hiding spots. Sand is also an important choice. Don't go too fine.
Invertebrates are you friends if you're running a community tank as a clean up crew.

I could go on forever. You'll be overloaded with info at first and get overwhelmed for sure. Maybe pick up a few books to guide you. Online forums are awesome too. Good luck dude. Don't let the failures get you down too much. It happens to the best. I've dealt with more heartache in 1.5 years than my first 29 years on Earth. Just remember these are living creatures and respect the hobby, which I'm sure you already do by joining this forum. Make friends in the hobby and never stop learning. GOOD LUCK!
 

theMeat

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If you're new to hobby lots to take in to avoid pitfalls and set backs. Will start with some questions. Do you have?
Apartment or house?

Sump? What size?

Skimmer? What model?

Is tank tempered glass, and does it have holes drilled in it? Do you already have the tank? What brand?
 

DEL

reef guy in jc
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my 2 things i want to add . read read read (forums, articles, etc). have patience. that's basically all. welcome to reefing !!

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jlm080307

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my 2 things i want to add . read read read (forums, articles, etc). have patience. that's basically all. welcome to reefing !!

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^ this! Patience is key. Do not make knee **** reactions.

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theMeat

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^ this! Patience is key. Do not make knee **** reactions.

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True on many fronts, and kneejurk not good. but with many things, like hair algae, Ich, aptasia, etc., act fast and turn it around before you have to tear it down and or start over
 

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