Brand new reefer here with lots of questions!

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If I were you, I will skip the canister filter and straight to HOB and powerhead. Canister is a ***** to maintain. Get something like Seachem Tidal 55 or good ol Aquaclear HOB! :)
As for lighting, I will go for something else.

Why not go smaller tank? Get a IM Fusion 10 or 20? You can have 1 AI prime for $150 used and don't need any HOB or powerhead (for 10)
I think I’ve decided to try to go with a sump if I can get my tank drilled, it seems like the best course if I can pull it off! I really like the size of a 40 breeder and for what kind of fish I’d like to start with! Plus there’s so many cool corals I’d like to try that I’d run out of room too quickly in a smaller tank haha.
 
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HOB require frequent cleaning so if you are going to use, get something that’s very easy to keep clean, otherwise, canisters can become, counterproductive to it function, exporting waste.
I used the Aquaclear 110 on my 65g for 4 years, and bought 3 sponges so they could be changed frequently in a minute or two.

You really don’t need lights at the start, fish don’t need them and use, fuels the ugly stages, so I get it, you’ll want to see your fish, just use very sparing, the less, the better in terms of both intensity and length of time off.

If your on a budget, have a look at the Nicrew Hypereef 100, it’s a two puck system in the correct spectrum and of sufficient intensity to grow anything up to SPS. Nothing fancy, needs a simple on/off timer.

Get your rock now and put it in a bucket with saltwater and a bottle of bacteria, some flow, that will prepare your rock so when you finish moving, drop in wet, cycled rock, add water and sand and your ready to go.

Good luck and Welcome to R2R.

This is a 65g at 3 years maturity with an HOB and 2 OW-25 Jebao wavemakers, an ATO, and a Coralife Skimmer.
It had nine fish.
The 40 is too small for tangs, but there are other great combinations.
D1DF25A2-C2E7-43BD-B2EC-EBC3F36C098A.jpeg
A video I watched from BRS also recommended keeping the lights off for the first few months of the tank so I will definitely be doing that! I have a dark corner the tank will be going in which will help keep algae down also. I haven’t heard of that brand of light before but I will check them out.
I was worried about getting the rock ready but getting it started now will definitely help, I might try to get that going this week if I can pick up what I need for it! Thank you for your advice! Your tank looks amazing!
 

Finallysalty80

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Welcome!!!!! I'm on my first reef tank too, also a 40g breeder. It's been up for about a year and everything has been awesome. These guys are the absolute best, the amount of collective knowledge on this forum is incredible. They have helped me numerous times along the way.
It's a bit overwhelming at first but I quickly realized something...a reef tank is a freshwater tank with salt in it at its most basic. It's as simple or as complicated as you want it to be. From It's simplest form it gets a little more complicated as you add more complex lifeforms and you will continue to learn more whether about the system, equipment, nutrients, livestock in general etc which raises the complexity and quality of the tank. Just remember, keep the faith, learn as much as you can and welcome to the best hobby in the world!!! You came to the right place, these guys are the best!
 

Fennel

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Hey everyone! I am finally living my dream of getting a reef tank and I'm hoping to get it set up when I move in the next month. I've been doing crazy amounts of research and trying to absorb everything I can, watching the BRS 52 weeks and their 5 minute guides. I picked up a 40 breeder at Petco on sale and a stand at my LFS along with a glass hinged lid. Since then I've hit a wall of information overload, trying to figure out what filtration and lights are right for me.

I'm thinking of going with a canister filter, but I can't decide between a Fluval 407, FX4 or FX6, or an Oase Biomaster, either 600 or 800. In the five minutes before deciding to make this post I was also considering going with a pre-made or DIY sump, however that would mean drilling and plumbing my tank and would add even more to the setup.

For lights my LFS recommended the Fluval 3.0 marine led, but I've also looked into AI Primes, though that would be double the cost of the Fluval lights. I have lots of options and everything I find contradicts something else :/

Of course this is only the beginning, and I'm trying to figure out what kind of corals and fish I can get for my tank as well. My LFS said I would be limited to four or five fish with my size, but I was wondering if upping the filtration or going with a sump would allow me to add a few more along with some corals.

If anyone has any advice on this or if these questions would be better suited for the new-to-salt forum please let me know! Regardless, I am very excited to finally join the reefing community!
Trying to go cheap, I have already spent hundreds just on a nano set up trying different coral. The first saltwater tank experience in my ignorant opinion is to start small with bare bones basic filtering and get the algae going in a nano to enjoy as a display then for the refugium later when a tank upgrade happens. Live rock, live sand and hardy beginner coral with a clean up crew is all I am going with these first few years. Cycling a tank is one of the best parts of the hobby. All the new stuff that happens after dry rock goes live. Coralline algae is a must and once it establishes, then you might be ready for fish. No matter what brand, the basic filtration is all you need and some can diy easier and cheaper. Start slow.
 
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Welcome!!!!! I'm on my first reef tank too, also a 40g breeder. It's been up for about a year and everything has been awesome. These guys are the absolute best, the amount of collective knowledge on this forum is incredible. They have helped me numerous times along the way.
It's a bit overwhelming at first but I quickly realized something...a reef tank is a freshwater tank with salt in it at its most basic. It's as simple or as complicated as you want it to be. From It's simplest form it gets a little more complicated as you add more complex lifeforms and you will continue to learn more whether about the system, equipment, nutrients, livestock in general etc which raises the complexity and quality of the tank. Just remember, keep the faith, learn as much as you can and welcome to the best hobby in the world!!! You came to the right place, these guys are the best!
I sometimes feel like I’m making it more difficult for myself as I dive into all this information, but I’m enjoying learning about everything and trying to keep it simple at first. Thank you for the warm welcome!
 
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Trying to go cheap, I have already spent hundreds just on a nano set up trying different coral. The first saltwater tank experience in my ignorant opinion is to start small with bare bones basic filtering and get the algae going in a nano to enjoy as a display then for the refugium later when a tank upgrade happens. Live rock, live sand and hardy beginner coral with a clean up crew is all I am going with these first few years. Cycling a tank is one of the best parts of the hobby. All the new stuff that happens after dry rock goes live. Coralline algae is a must and once it establishes, then you might be ready for fish. No matter what brand, the basic filtration is all you need and some can diy easier and cheaper. Start slow.
Yeah my budget is mainly based around equipment costs, since it’s going to be quite a while before I add any corals I will make another budget for them. If I can get my sump plans off the ground then I might be able to add a refugium to it, but that will be a later step once everything is up and running. Definitely taking it one step at a time!
 

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I sometimes feel like I’m making it more difficult for myself as I dive into all this information, but I’m enjoying learning about everything and trying to keep it simple at first. Thank you for the warm welcome!
Did the same thing. The more I researched the more confused I got and the longer the list of "stuff" got that I needed. After some advice from an experienced person I got a tank at petco on sale, stand, live sand and rock, fluval 3.0, aquaclear110 HOB, heater and a couple powerheads. Still running perfectly with just that equipment. The only thing I would do different if I could is start out with a very good quality test kit. I went cheap because I didn't know any better and ended up chasing bad numbers just to find out my tank had actually cycled in just a few days but my crap test kit was giving me false numbers.
 
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Did the same thing. The more I researched the more confused I got and the longer the list of "stuff" got that I needed. After some advice from an experienced person I got a tank at petco on sale, stand, live sand and rock, fluval 3.0, aquaclear110 HOB, heater and a couple powerheads. Still running perfectly with just that equipment. The only thing I would do different if I could is start out with a very good quality test kit. I went cheap because I didn't know any better and ended up chasing bad numbers just to find out my tank had actually cycled in just a few days but my crap test kit was giving me false numbers.
Which test kit would you recommend using? I've heard mixed things about API but I can't remember the brand I see recommended most, I think it starts with an S. I definitely want to get started soon but I'd also like to make sure I'm investing in quality equipment.
 

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Hey everyone! I am finally living my dream of getting a reef tank and I'm hoping to get it set up when I move in the next month. I've been doing crazy amounts of research and trying to absorb everything I can, watching the BRS 52 weeks and their 5 minute guides. I picked up a 40 breeder at Petco on sale and a stand at my LFS along with a glass hinged lid. Since then I've hit a wall of information overload, trying to figure out what filtration and lights are right for me.

I'm thinking of going with a canister filter, but I can't decide between a Fluval 407, FX4 or FX6, or an Oase Biomaster, either 600 or 800. In the five minutes before deciding to make this post I was also considering going with a pre-made or DIY sump, however that would mean drilling and plumbing my tank and would add even more to the setup.

For lights my LFS recommended the Fluval 3.0 marine led, but I've also looked into AI Primes, though that would be double the cost of the Fluval lights. I have lots of options and everything I find contradicts something else :/

Of course this is only the beginning, and I'm trying to figure out what kind of corals and fish I can get for my tank as well. My LFS said I would be limited to four or five fish with my size, but I was wondering if upping the filtration or going with a sump would allow me to add a few more along with some corals.

If anyone has any advice on this or if these questions would be better suited for the new-to-salt forum please let me know! Regardless, I am very excited to finally join the reefing community!
Very glad you have joined us here at Reef2Reef!

Start a 40 Questions build thread and you will be get a lot of information and tips!

rosalind russell bubbles GIF
 

gabrieltackitt

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Which test kit would you recommend using? I've heard mixed things about API but I can't remember the brand I see recommended most, I think it starts with an S. I definitely want to get started soon but I'd also like to make sure I'm investing in quality equipment.
I also started with a 40 Breeder. I decided to go with a sump after a good deal of debate with myself, and I’m so glad I did.

I’d recommend Salifert Kits, I think that’s the S you were thinking of.
 

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Welcome to Reef to Reef!
Peace River was the very first person to greet me when I first joined. Nice to see some things haven't changed.
I guess I'll be the "kill joy" of your thread as this hobby is not filled with rainbows and unicorns. If reefing were simple, cheap, and easy I imagine more folks would be getting into the hobby rather than "getting out".
So some things that I believe will serve you well and make your journey more enjoyable perhaps.

-Get the biggest tank you can find; more volume is more stable than less volume.
-Buy test kits and use them. Hana digital checkers are more pricey but easy to use and ease makes for a higher probability you'll actually test. (parameters are everything)
-Lighting/T5's cheap and proven the "gold standard" in lighting; can upgrade to pricey LEDS in the future if so inclined but not necessary.
-Get a skimmer; sized appropriately to water volume
- Heater, two with a controller is better.
- cheap media reactors: carbon/gfo/bio-pellets all serve a purpose at key times
-two return pumps: one for display, other for reactors and a backup in an emergency
-a sump: nice place to put all the above gadgets and a groovy place for mechanical filtration (filter sock) or filter roller if you have the extra cash and are lazy.

A small list of some basics to get you off to a flying start. As i mentioned before, more people "getting out" than "remaining in" so look on Facebook groups to snag used gear as it will be more affordable. Also, no sense in buying things now you'll be ditching soon after when you realize its not a fit for what you're really trying to accomplish.
Good things come to those who wait and I promise the journey is much more enjoyable having all your ducks in a row rather than scrambling to fix what was flawed from the beginning
Hope you find this helpful, and at the very least, somewhat entertaining. Welcome to reefing!
 
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Welcome to Reef to Reef!
Peace River was the very first person to greet me when I first joined. Nice to see some things haven't changed.
I guess I'll be the "kill joy" of your thread as this hobby is not filled with rainbows and unicorns. If reefing were simple, cheap, and easy I imagine more folks would be getting into the hobby rather than "getting out".
So some things that I believe will serve you well and make your journey more enjoyable perhaps.

-Get the biggest tank you can find; more volume is more stable than less volume.
-Buy test kits and use them. Hana digital checkers are more pricey but easy to use and ease makes for a higher probability you'll actually test. (parameters are everything)
-Lighting/T5's cheap and proven the "gold standard" in lighting; can upgrade to pricey LEDS in the future if so inclined but not necessary.
-Get a skimmer; sized appropriately to water volume
- Heater, two with a controller is better.
- cheap media reactors: carbon/gfo/bio-pellets all serve a purpose at key times
-two return pumps: one for display, other for reactors and a backup in an emergency
-a sump: nice place to put all the above gadgets and a groovy place for mechanical filtration (filter sock) or filter roller if you have the extra cash and are lazy.

A small list of some basics to get you off to a flying start. As i mentioned before, more people "getting out" than "remaining in" so look on Facebook groups to snag used gear as it will be more affordable. Also, no sense in buying things now you'll be ditching soon after when you realize its not a fit for what you're really trying to accomplish.
Good things come to those who wait and I promise the journey is much more enjoyable having all your ducks in a row rather than scrambling to fix what was flawed from the beginning
Hope you find this helpful, and at the very least, somewhat entertaining. Welcome to reefing!
Yes this is very helpful, thank you very much! I have my 40 breeder and now that I am planning on doing a sump I hope to do about a 20g one, so hopefully 60g will be a good starting point. I definitely want to invest in quality equipment now so I don't waste money in the long run, I just keep over researching things so I haven't bought anything except the tank and stand really. It's already worked out though as I keep changing my plans so I can hopefully get a solid plan before I start investing more. I haven't thought to check out facebook for used gear, I will definitely be doing that soon. Thank you again! I have a lot more to think about now.
 

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Welcome dude! I remember your shoes and what it feels like. Headed into the unknown with nothing but a map and field guide. Its a great trip man! Think about what kind of fish your interested and what kind of corals you enjoy. Patience is the key to this hobby, you wont get anywhere by rushing anything. Have fun and keep learning and you will go far. Anything in particular you are looking for long term? (Example: Clownfish hosting with anemone)
 

adittam

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I have 46 gallon bowfront, and run a canister filter with a whole bunch of rock plus highly porous biomedia (Nano-Tech Bio-Spheres by Maxspect) in 2 of the 4 trays in my canister filter, mechanical filtration in 1 tray, and carbon in the 4th tray. Click on my "build thread contributor" badge to see my build thread, it'll be very similar to what you were thinking if you decide to go canister. While I feel like there are definite advantages to a sump, I also feel like a lot of reefers rip on canister filters unfairly. The Fluval 407 I use is a piece of cake to clean, it gives a TON of flexibility with its 4 media trays, it was cheap (only about $160 using Petco's 25% off online order, pick up in-store coupon), and it just flat out moves more water than most HOB filters. In addition, you can still add a HOB filter and/or HOB skimmer if you want to, and the optional Fluval spray bar I use with mine gives me awesome water surface agitation. The biggest downside to a canister filter in my opinion is that it doesn't give you the option to hide things (like the heater, UV, etc) in the sump, out of sight.

This youtube playlist is the model that I used when I designed my build - super informative and logical way to build a great reef tank on a budget, and the guy who makes them is interesting to watch.
 
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adittam

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Welcome to R2R, glad your looking into everything instead of just jumping (that’s what I’m doing also). I am also toying with the canister thought. @vetteguy53081 is right about the extra maintenance and from what I have been reading if you don’t dedicate to it bad things will happen but then again the same holds true for all systems to different degrees. Good luck with your build, you may want to also check out other BRS and Tidal Garden videos on YouTube. LiveAquaria does a good job of describing husbandry and compatibility for livestock including corals.

I love my Fluval 407 canister filter, especially with the Fluval spray bar attached to its outflow. Don't abandon the idea just because it's not popular here.
 
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