Not another newb who needs advice!

Discussion in 'New Members' started by gavster, 4 May 2011.

  1. gavster

    gavster

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    Haha.... hey guys. Just wanted to pop in and introduce myself. Ive got so many questions that i dont even know where to start! So i wont go post-crazy until i know where they should all go to keep things PC.

    I used to breed and sell fresh water fish years ago, so im fairly adept in that department but my dream has always been a marine tank!

    Bottom line is that its always come down to the lack of cash. Lets face it, 50k for a pristine 5 or 6ft mature setup is not unheard of. Well i STILL dont have that kind of money to throw at this hobby, so in the interim i thought i'd ask all of you what you think.

    I want to start a 5ft tank and want to know what the most cost effective way is of doing this. Ive looked at the secondhand market and most tanks are scratched or have water damage or are just marginally cheaper than a new tank so i dont think that route is the way to go, since the imperfections would bug me.

    Should i buy new or build? Do you know of any good, REASONABLE builders out there, or in Dbn specifically? I'm really keen to get started ASAP but purely because of cost i want to start with the hardware and build slowly from there.

    All your help will be much appreciated :thumbup:
     
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  3. robertkukla

    robertkukla

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    Welcome to MASA,
     
  4. crispin

    crispin

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    hey gavster, welcome to the best marine forum in SA, and the friendliest in the world :)
    I know the feelings you have with regard to buyiong a slightly scratched, not quite perfect second hand tank, but they should be WAY cheaper than new. Ive picked up a number of tanks from the second hand section (6 and counting) and all have been great. at times a few have been a little costly, but some have been very cheap and generally the equipment that goes with it is in good working order. If you are worried about a price on a tank then ask us if we think its fair deal, i assure you if its not applicable to what you will want to achieve we will tell ya. Sometimes you will find tanks that are best for Fresh water only (bath water) without overflows and sumps etc and we will advise what you can do to make it marine ready.

    Have a good look through our second hand section and find a tank you like the look of. A few pointers though, try get a length you like (5ft as you say) anmd a tank that is wider than 500cm but under 1000cm so that you have width for aquascaping and increased water vollume, and ariound 600-650cm deep so that you get decent light penertration for corals which need more light. there are lots of things to think about, so go ahve a look for a tank you like and ask the the team on masa what we think, it will save you lots of hard earned cash :)
     
  5. Henkart

    Henkart

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    I would personally go to a glass shop, and let them cut the sizes for you and to your exact requirement, the do the glass welding too, you will find you will save atleast 50% on your tank costs like that...
     
  6. gavster

    gavster Thread Starter

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    Thanks for the quick responses guys! Ive built small freshwater tanks before so i know i could do it, but that was 6mm and with no bracing, holes cut in the back, overflows, sumps etc, etc.

    Marines are a lot more complicated. Could anyone help me plans? I want to go as high as possible, so i think 1500l x 500w x 650h would probably be good.

    Im comfortable with the basic tank. Like i said, its the design of the overflow with outlet and inlet holes, and sump that i wouldnt know where to start with?
     
  7. Evo R

    Evo R

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    :welcometomasa2:

    Just a few pointers to think about.

    1. With marines you always have to think long term.
    E.g if you are renting its beter to start smaller as moving a 700l system every couple of months is a logistics nightmare.

    2. Planing....I know how you feel at this point, you want to keep everything you see and you want your tank looking beter than the next guy. There for planing is needed.
    You cant just jump in with sps corals and highly delicate fish WITHOUT the proper research as you are guaranteed to have very costly loses!!!

    3. if you want to start getting bits and bobs here and there to stretch the expenses out over n period of time, i sugest start with the non guaranteed stuff first.
    Eg. there is no point in getting a R10k skimmer and leaving it sealed in the garage for two years and then when your finaly ready to use it, you see that its faulty and that the manufactures warentee period of a year is over.(then you have a very big and expensive paper weight)

    And read as much as you can, and there is no such thing as a dumb question!!!!

    And remember we are not making money out of you so we will not tell you to buy some stupid expensive thing if you dont really need it.(we are not lfs and you are not our walking ATM)

    And lastly we want pics and lots of it!!!!!!!!!
    (most of us here are all pic-o-holics :lol:)
     
  8. Henkart

    Henkart

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    will you be running a sump for the tank...? then you should design it carefully...

    it sound pretty standard the size you wanna go, but setting up will cost money, and allot of it, getting down to the glass part of it, that will be peanuts to the amount of money you will spend on LR and all the gadgets you will need on that size tank, if you take it very slow, you should be fine...
     
  9. Jeann1

    Jeann1

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    welcometomasa

    No question is a dumb question, the more your read and ask, the more you learn!
     
  10. gavster

    gavster Thread Starter

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    Yeah, i plan to take it veeeeery slow! thanks for the advice. I just want to get the tank and basics set up so i can get a few hardy species in there and say that i FINALLy own a marine tank! Haha... I just need to find a builder now (or someone who wants to help me build one!;))
     
  11. Tobes

    Tobes Retired Moderator

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    Welcome to MASA, glad you joined us. Join the East coast reef club in Durban, check them out in the forums. You will surely learn a lot by speaking to the guys and also get some tips as to what to buy where etc. The guys get together on a monthly basis and have a few drinks, chat and even braai :1:
    I was there before last year - nice bunch :yeahdude:

    Before you plan anything, read the link in my signature on starting a marine tank - you will definitely get some valuable info and advice there ;)
     
  12. maxisoft

    maxisoft

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    :welcome6:

    Good Luck with your build and remember the advice I was given when I started.....

    Nothing In Reefing happens quickly... only disasters...;)
     
  13. Alias

    Alias

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    Welcome :p as a noob i found loads of info on here and dont be shy to use the search bar.

    As far as new vs 2nd hand issue, go new! the cost is negligible and speaking from experience (i started with a second hand tank and the back pane cracked after 6 weeks) i would go new from the start.

    1) you get to design the exact tank you want wrt dimensions plus new glass with no scratches or marks.
    2)most builders (or atleast the guy im using) offer some form of guarantee on the build.

    Goodluck with the build.
     
  14. inflames

    inflames

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    Welcome to MASA! Hope you will find all the info here of great help! READ, READ ,READ and check back with the guys here at the forum, it will save you allot of heartache and cash in the long run!

    At least you wont have the expense of mixing salt water!

    Good luck!
     
  15. keyaam

    keyaam

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    welcome gavster.
     
  16. Tremayn

    Tremayn

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    Welcome man.. I have a 5ft tank and 4ft sump. Bought it 2nd hand here and it cost me R1650 with a stand
     
  17. Slagter

    Slagter MASA Contributor

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    Is that all? Damn, I should have charged more. :tt2:

    New is always nicer. It comes with guarantees and warranties. But that's for equipment. Nothing wrong with 2nd hand tanks.

    Good luck and remember: We love pics. LOTS OF PICS!
     
  18. Tremayn

    Tremayn

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    Haha its too late now :p
     
  19. gavster

    gavster Thread Starter

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    Hey guys. Wow I'm really glad I joined now and grateful for all the replies. I'll definitely consider joining ECRC but I'm not really a "clubbie" and I'd probably just let the guy down and never pitch, with my social schedule. Geez R1650 for a five foot tank AND sump. Now that's what I'm talking about! :)
     
  20. gavster

    gavster Thread Starter

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    Sorry everyone... Some more questions. I've made a couple of contacts and waiting for quotes but am also investigating building the tank myself. The only thing that I'm still unsure of is the overflow. I hate having it in the corner because I want three full viewing panes. Are there any other options? I saw a guys tank on here that just had an overflow pipe and funnel with no box around it. Is this ok? If I do build a box, how many holes do in need and are these drilled in the bottom of the tank. Also do the pipes from these holes go straight down to the sump? I.e. Do I also need holes directly below these in my cabinet?
     
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