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  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2003

    Newbie! What are the Eclipse Combo Pro & Cons?

    I am totally new to the saltwater world. I am considering buying a Eclipse Combo. Specifically this tank:

    29-Gallon Glass Aquarium, Eclipse3 System, 24" Fluorescent Lamps (2), Rite-Size "H" Filter Cartridge, BIO-Blend™ Tropical Fish Food, BIO-Safe™ Tap Water Conditioner, BIO-Coat™ Stress Defense, Beginners Fishkeeping Guide. Certified Flow: 250 GPH

    I know that starting out at 29 Gallons isn't the best in the world. I know that I would have to purchase a skimmer, heater and some other accessories. I just want to know if I am going to provide a safe/reliable product that will keep my fish/reef happy?

    Any feedback is totally welcome. I also found out that purchasing the tank is the hardest part. In my opinion so far.

  2. #2
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Welcome aboard!! Can't help you with your question though

  3. #3
    Senior Member GoSUV's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Welcome onboard, S@altyDog. I agree buying the tank is the hardest part, but not the most expensive

    First you have to decide WHAT you want to keep in the tank. I agree 29gal is the minimum size you'll need for a saltwater setup. If you ever decide that you want to keep corals, lighting will be a big part of your consideration in terms of design and budget. Otherwise if you just want to keep fish and mobile invertebrates, normal output flourescent lighting will suffice.

    It sounds like the tank combo you are quoting is more geared towards a freshwater setup. You can use these things for saltwater, but don't expect great results. In saltwater tanks, you don't want any mechanical filters as these tend to accumulate detrius and lead to excessive nitrate. The fish food you can buy better ones dedicated to specific species you want to keep. Same for the tap water conditioner. Tap water usually contains too much bad stuff for saltwater use. It is better to have a water filtration system (RO, DI, RO/DI) to produce pure water.

    The latest trend in saltwater is, you want to have enough live rock for the biological filtration, a protein skimmer for dissolved organics removal, and powerheads in the tank for water movement. And maybe a sand bed to house beneficial micro fauna to help eat detrius. Your tank isn't big enough for a Deep Sand Bed, so if you hear this term you can pretty much ignore it now. The DSB idea is still in its infancy so there is currently a lot of debate going on.

    Do a lot of reading, don't rush things and research before you buy. A large part of saltwater keeping expenses is due to buying bad/unnecessary equipment by ignorance of the aquarist.

    Enjoy. :biggrinbo
    If the authors of "Finding Nemo" knew anything about Clownfishes, Marlin would turn into a female and Nemo would become her new husband.

  4. #4
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Thanks for the suggestions, I am just going to wait to start. It's just been in the planning stages for awhile.


  5. #5
    Senior Member Zookeeper's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2003

    Everything that GoSUV told you is gold, and most importantly his advise about figuring out what you want to keep.

    "29-Gallon Glass Aquarium". I too would consider this the absolute minimum for a beginner. Most people seem to go small at first thinking that if anything goes wrong, the $ loss won't be too bad. Sadly, your risk of something going wrong goes up exponentially the smaller you go.

    "Eclipse3 System, 24" Fluorescent Lamps (2)". With this lighting set up, you can keep fish, snails, crabs, shrimp, fanworms, and that's about it. Coral wise, you could keep some mushrooms from the discosoma (sp?) species, but that would be about it. Double that lighting, and you have many more options. You could keep some leathers, sea mats and other lower light corals. However, the vast majority of corals require even stronger lighting that that.

    "Rite-Size "H" Filter Cartridge" . See GoSUV's comments. Live rock and a skimmer.

    "Tropical Fish Food, BIO-Safe™". Buy food after you figure out what you want to keep. If I had to pick one food, and one only, I'd go with Cyclop-Eeze.

    "Tap Water Conditioner". You will definately need this if you use tap water. Our tap water is pretty good here in Ottawa and we can "get away" with using it. I have no idea how much chlorine, phosphate and other metals/minerals are in LV tap water....if you are going to use it, get it tested first, but obviously RO/DI is the best route to go.

    "BIO-Coat™ Stress Defense". If you have a skimmer, you definately don't want this stuff. It will make your skimmer go wild.

    "Beginners Fishkeeping Guide". Nothing wrong with a good book. If I could have only one book, I'd go with "Natural Reef Aquariums" by John Tullock. However, just about anything I've ever read in an aquarium book, can be found on the net for free.

    Good luck, and be prepared to open your wallet :crap: :crap:

  6. #6
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    One of the best books for SW fishkeeping is by Bob Fenner and is called "The conscientious Marine Aquarist". There are others for reefkeeping and coral, inverts and such, but for just the plain hobby, Bob's is excellant.

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