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  1. #1
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    I wanna be a fish geek, how do I get started?

    I am interested in getting setup with a aquairium that is maybe about 60 galons or so.  I would like to be able to have live rock and some very colourful fish.  

    I have nothing right now and was wondering if anyone would be able to help me out with what I would need and the general cost to get started.

    Thanks in advance.

    Wheels :P

  2. #2
    ijo
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    Re: I wanna be a fish geek, how do I get started?

    Welcome to the board wheels... nice to see more fish geeks from Ottawa....

    Sorry for not responding earlier...I've been extremely busy lately.  If no one helps you with your post today, I'll give you a  few pointers tonight.

    IJO

  3. #3
    ijo
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    Re: I wanna be a fish geek, how do I get started?

    READ!!! its the best thing you can do... either online reading, the archives of news groups, forums, etc. or in a book(I recommend "The Conscientious Marine Aquarist" by Robert Fenner). Become familiar with terms such as sumps, halides, deep sand beds, liverock, berlin system, etc. Do a lot of research in to the type of set up you want. ie Do you want hard or soft corals; What type of fish do you intend to keep and what are their restraints; what is the likelihood of upgrading to a larger tank in the future; what type of equipment will you need; can you devote enough resources: time, money, and patience?

    Here is a link to our FAQ.
    The first two links should give you an idea of what you might need.

    Hope this helps... if you have have any other questions... ASK ASK ASK  

    IJO

  4. #4
    Senior Member mouse6196's Avatar
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    Re: I wanna be a fish geek, how do I get started?

    I agree with IJO....READ READ READ.  Starting with a live rock and fish only et up is a great way to start.  Be sure to get hermits and turbo snails to help you through the awful algae stages you'll go through.  Once you settle into a cycled system, go for the hardy low light corals.  That'll get the bug biting you.  Soon you'll be like all of us, and slowly up grade the system.  Lighting etc.  Only a year ago I set up a 90 gallon live rock fish only tank, and today I'm hosting some of the hardest corals to keep.  It's fun and it never stops growing.  Good Luck!
    The only thing two reef keepers will agree on, is what the third reef keeper is doing wrong!

  5. #5
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    Re: I wanna be a fish geek, how do I get started?

      Hey Mouse,  what kind of corals do you keep? I hope your another SPS man. As for the new man in the marine setup business, find a couple of mentors with tanks you like and lean heavily on them. Marine enthusiasts are very willing to help others out. This forum is extremely helpfull but the one on one exchanges are most valuable.
     We should have a MASO someday. (Marine Aquarium Society of Ottawa).
    True Perc

  6. #6
    Senior Member mouse6196's Avatar
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    Re: I wanna be a fish geek, how do I get started?

    I have mostly SPS with some softies that I started with.  All my SPS are doing amazingly well.  Especially my blue tip staghorns and Montis.  I'm just keeping everything the way I have it.  I have a set up many would criticize ie: lighting,  but it's working so I'm leaving it alone.  I run a single 400 Watt MH 6500K over the center of the 48" long tank.  The bulb is 13 inches above the water surface. (In a DIY hood).  I also run 3 VHO atinics about 4 inches over the water to give me the blue.  I have been told by many to go for the 10000K MH for blue but the way it is now looks great, and is working.  Just my thoughts.  Good Luck all.

    The only thing two reef keepers will agree on, is what the third reef keeper is doing wrong!

  7. #7
    ijo
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    Re: I wanna be a fish geek, how do I get started?

    mouse6196,

    I agree with you, the actinic VHOs with the 400 65k MH sounds great.  I currently have a 4 110 VHO setup with 2 actnic and 2 aquasun... color is fine... just limits me to softies.  When I upgrade to MH(extremely soon) I will also go with the 65k and VHO combo.

    IJO

  8. #8
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    Re: I wanna be a fish geek, how do I get started?

     I think you guys are on the right track. I'm running a single 400 Iwasaki with 2 36" URI actinics and 2 36" reef sun bulbs. This has been the best combo I've had yet. You can see the results on www.ovas.ca in the gallery "Jakes marine tank". In one shot of a blue green acro I have the
    400 watt turned off but it's on in the others. My last setup had 2 250 watt Iwasaki with 2 36" URI
    actinics, not bad but pricey on bulb change day. There is a marked difference in SPS reaction to
    400 watt bulbs as opposed to 250 watts.
     The only drawback is 780 watts on a 90 gallon seems to beat up on discosoma and some
    blastomussa corals. For the record I have a good bunch of acros, a stylophora and another SPS in the middle of my tank. One more thought is that I've been using B-Ionic 2 part daily additive and topping with 12 degree hardness well water for 3 years now.

                                       
    True Perc

  9. #9
    Senior Member mouse6196's Avatar
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    Re: I wanna be a fish geek, how do I get started?

    I just find that the 10000K, with VHO atinics is way too blue....it's always night looking.  As far as the intensity for more sensitive corals, I picked up some Marshall island rock, usually flat pieces, and made ledges and arches.  this gave great shaded areas for softies, mushrooms etc.  It also controls their spread as they'll tend to stay under the ledges.  The 6500K is way too green without added atinics, and even with normal output atinics, it has a nice look.  I also like the price of a 6500K bulb over others....good luck all. 8)
    The only thing two reef keepers will agree on, is what the third reef keeper is doing wrong!

  10. #10
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    Re: I wanna be a fish geek, how do I get started?

    I'm like fish geek, i've had my tank running for a year now and just finishing up a MH canopy. I have a 60 gal. tank and was thinking to run 1 -175 mh with 2 actinics. The tank is 48 X12 X24 hi, so my structure is mostly veritcal with shelves. depth of the tank makes it hard to fit more fixtures in, as it is, its a snug fit. I was hoping to grow a variety of coral, SPS near the top, softies at the bottom. You think it will work? Lamp is 7 inches from the water, and i put a good reflector inside the canopy. I know, splash and heat are concerns, i'll have to monitor that stuff at the start and ajust accordingly.
    I can see this going to 120 gal. pretty quickly. (this is a trainer tank)
    If anyone is willing to show their tanks off and offer a bit of advice, i'm all ears. I live in Kanata.

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