How long did it take you to take your tank from Plan to Reality?

How long did it take you to take your tank from Plan to Reality?

  • 1 - 30 days (thought about it and jumped right in budget be darned)

    Votes: 3 7.9%
  • 1 month to 6 months

    Votes: 9 23.7%
  • 6 months to 1 year

    Votes: 8 21.1%
  • Over a year

    Votes: 18 47.4%

  • Total voters
    38

BackToTheReef

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With a closing date rapidly approaching I have started working on the official plan for my tank. I won't know a few specifics until I close and get to do some looking around and demo (there's a tight stairway to the basement that will be my main limiting factor) but I am starting putting pen to paper, sketching, listing equipment, half creating a "budget" and purchasing plan, a potential social media plan, and a schedule.

This is going to be the long game where I buy tank equipment over a year to a year and half then probably another six months to build. Because of that "long game" the end goal seems a little out of reach so I am curious:

How long did it take you to go from plan to equipment purchases to water to livestock?
 

KorD

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That really all depends of the size of the tank.
30 talk and under you can do quickly once the first cycle ends, but you will be changing things up over the next year.
130gal I just put up a month ago... I might not be happy with it for about 2 years until stuff grows out the way I would like to see it. Also I change a lot of the way (tinkering) until I like the way it runs

For design work, and layout... I usually have it done in a week, and flow water

Also from day dreaming of my 130gal.. took 12 years from when I wanted tank that big, until the day I got it.. LOL
 
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Reefer of Oz

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Nice poll. Good luck with the build project!

How long did it take you to go from plan to equipment purchases to water to livestock?
I voted 6mos-1yr. I am in month 6 of my first build and just introduce some CUC into my “stable” system. There are still several months of balancing and maintenance routines to establish before I start QTing coral and many months before fish are considered. I am trying my best to be patient over impulsive and observant over reactive.
 

Nick Steele

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I voted 6 months to a year.

I started working in aquaculture and soon realized I wanted a reef tank. Started to instantly plan want I wanted and settled on a nuvo20. Didn’t plan to buy anything for at least another year but got the whole tank as a gift after doing all my research and making the Gf at the time constantly watch BRS videos with me.

So it was about 6 months till I got the equipment another week for water and by month 7 of planning I had two clowns and some beginner corals. Still not completely happy with the tank although I love it I’d say it will be another year before I’m 100% satisfied with how it looks.
 

andrewkw

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I'm really bad about throwing things together. While the reefs themselves always turn out good everything else tends to suffer. IE don't bother painting 2x4 stands before putting the tank on, don't bother attempting doors for years ect. Hanging lights however. That being said I do have the same main display tank I had back in 2006.

When I get around to my dream system I will take my time and fix some of the issues I've had over the years, but for a regular tank I'll just wing it. Reach into my boxes of junk and put together something and if I don't have the right part to make it work order something then.

Just the other day I picked up a few 2 gallon cubes and I've actually been thinking about putting together a "nice" system, instead of a nice reef surrounded by whatever I could throw together.
 
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BackToTheReef

BackToTheReef

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Don't buy equipment early unless it's used. You're just eating through warranty.

If you want to spend money early in the process, buy a stock tank a some live rock and get it up and maturing.

Depending on the final details, that's not going to be an option. It's going to be a biggie!

The QT system and live rock curing will definitely be the first things set up. I am hoping to get a number of Rubbermaid stock tanks to soak some Marco in plain RO, then add in some live rock and get it "spreading" while building the main tank.
 

Mical

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I’m not sure, still in progress :D My wallet is glad to know there is an “end” to this madness though, lol

Not exactly an "END" but maybe a cost reduction. There's still RODI water, filters, dosing supplies, fish & coral food, test supplies... The biggest $$$ outlay is tank/stand, lighting, heaters, pumps, rock, sand & livestock.
 

802ScubaFish

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Not exactly an "END" but maybe a cost reduction. There's still RODI water, filters, dosing supplies, fish & coral food, test supplies... The biggest $$$ outlay is tank/stand, lighting, heaters, pumps, rock, sand & livestock.
I’m definitely over the hump. Was mostly being sarcastic as I’m sure for me personally it will never stop . . Already planting the seeds with my gf that an upgrade is in the future, 32gal just doesn’t give me enough room to play ;)
 

90's reefer

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1 year but I had a nano to keep frags in, lol.
I first decided the tank size, 120, the type of stand, welded steel.
I bought a full MH light system and went with a used ati T5 for 14 months, lol.
Just got around to setting up the halides.
I took my time buying equipment so when I was ready to start I had everything.
Buy quality equipment is the best advice I could give.
 

Nick Steele

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I’m definitely over the hump. Was mostly being sarcastic as I’m sure for me personally it will never stop . . Already planting the seeds with my gf that an upgrade is in the future, 32gal just doesn’t give me enough room to play ;)
Isn’t that the truth! My 20g isn’t near enough and I’ve planted the seed for a 75-150g but being in an apartment is putting a damper on that plan.
 

802ScubaFish

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Isn’t that the truth! My 20g isn’t near enough and I’ve planted the seed for a 75-150g but being in an apartment is putting a damper on that plan.
We are still renting as well. Good luck to you, fight the good fight lol
 

vlangel

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I bought this tank in Oct 2016. It was originally going to be a bare bottom seahorse tank. That vision was realized in about a month because I already had the live rock and ponies in a smaller tank.

However after a year I just could not live without a sandbed. At that point my vision changed. I began to visualize a tank with a multilevel sandbed. That meant re-scaping my rockwork to design retaining walls to hold sand in place at differing heights. I also wanted to tie the tank into a basement sump and refugium directing below it for easy water changes.

This new vision would have a lot of fish. The nutrients resulting from the heavy bioload will be taken up by the thriving macro algae in the display and the fuge. Also the rock in the sump, and the display have a lot of sponges which help filter. I could not add more fish while I still had seahorses however. So I had to hold off while my aging ponies lived out their natural lives. That took several years. Once my last pony passed on then I added more fish, and shrimp. So I believe I can say that after 3 years when I first visualized a new vision for this tank, I am finally realizing it.
 

kkelly007

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I voted 1 - 6 months. My 105g peninsula tank is 5 months old and I have a few beautiful LPS specimens from my LFS that are thriving, 7 SPS from BC that are growing out and coloring up nicely, and 8 fish (including a gem tang & a flame wrasse). I monitor parameters meticulously, perform weekly w/c's, and generally think about my tank all of the time--long way to say that this hobby brings me a lot of joy. I'm sure I will enjoy it even more as it continues to mature, but to think how far I've come in five months is pretty staggering, and to focus on the actual question "Plan to Reality", the tank reality I have now is pretty great.
 

How's your tank currently looking?

  • Never better

    Votes: 114 14.0%
  • Pretty good

    Votes: 365 44.7%
  • Just OK

    Votes: 190 23.3%
  • Not great

    Votes: 77 9.4%
  • Prett Bad

    Votes: 32 3.9%
  • Yuck

    Votes: 19 2.3%
  • Other (please explain)

    Votes: 19 2.3%

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