My very first saltwater aquarium - 220 gallon

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Marsh980

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So today I finally ordered my very first saltwater aquarium after being a wimp for so long, plus I turn 40 this year and wanted to get myself a great present. I decided to get a custom 220 gallon (1000 litres as I’m British) D-D reef tank and cabinet and have to wait 5 weeks for it to be built as it will have a metal stand.

I would like to start my own diary here so you guys can give tips and share your knowledge. Once it arrives and if people are interested I’ll get pictures up of the delivery, set up and final tank design including aquascaping.

Many thanks for reading
 

PeteStevers

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Good luck! I started my first reef tank about 4 months ago. Its only a 40 gallon though. Can't wait to see it!
 

saltwater60

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Awesome. I’ll turn 40 layer this year too. I’ll buy something mid life crisis wise too.
 
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Marsh980

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Haha I’m hoping it wasn’t a mid life crisis purchase. I’m sure my 3yr old son will love it and will help me now and when he’s older, maybe he’ll get his own tank like his old man. I remember helping my dad with his saltwater tank in the mid to late 80s and that’s what caused my love of the hobby
 
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Marsh980

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PeteStevers said:
Good luck! I started my first reef tank about 4 months ago. Its only a 40 gallon though. Can't wait to see it!
Cheers and I can't wait for it to arrive. Its going to be a long 5 weeks
 

saltwater60

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Marsh980 said:
Haha I’m hoping it wasn’t a mid life crisis purchase. I’m sure my 3yr old son will love it and will help me now and when he’s older, maybe he’ll get his own tank like his old man. I remember helping my dad with his saltwater tank in the mid to late 80s and that’s what caused my love of the hobby
Doing aquariums with kids is so much fun. I had my reef tank and I remember my kids just sitting there with me watching it. It would calm them down when upset. I just started a 75 fresh water planted tank and my 16yr old wanted me to go reef. I said no due to time and money constraints at this moment
 
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Marsh980

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That's lovely and I hope the same happens with my son. Aquariums can be such a bonding experience. I loved my fresh water planted aquarium but felt it was time to step up. Lets hope your son doesn't continuously keep asking for a reef tank again...
 
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Marsh980

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So an update

I have ordered the below equipment for my tank:

3x Radion XR15 Lights with brackets
1x MP40 Powerhead
1x Vectra M2 Pump
1x Barb Kit
1x Heater
1x D-D Heat Controller
1x G9 Skimmer
1x UV 39 Watt Sterilliser
1x Smart ATO
1x Bubblemagus Roller
1x Continuum BAC Brick for my sump
1x Reeflink
 

saltwater60

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Marsh980 said:
So an update

I have ordered the below equipment for my tank:

3x Radion XR15 Lights with brackets
1x MP40 Powerhead
1x Vectra M2 Pump
1x Barb Kit
1x Heater
1x D-D Heat Controller
1x G9 Skimmer
1x UV 39 Watt Sterilliser
1x Smart ATO
1x Bubblemagus Roller
1x Continuum BAC Brick for my sump
1x Reeflink
Sounds like you’re well on your way. Man those protein skimmers have come down in price. I remember a while back protein skimmers like that would be a couple hundred more.

I’ll get back into reefing again someday. MAybe sooner than later. I’m looking for a place to put a seahorse tank. I just redid my wife’s office and I’m thinking I could do a small seahorse tank with some corals and a peaceful goby or two. We will see.
 
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Marsh980

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I hope so, just need to grab the live sand and dry rock.

I’m looking at:
2x boxes of TMC EcoReef A
3x boxes of TMC EcoReef E

I love this rock especially that it’s man made, has awesome shapes including branches and is porous.

I’m also looking at Natures Ocean live sand, possibly 6x large bags.

I’ve been told it’s very addictive and hard to keep freshwater when you’ve experienced saltwater. Maybe you could get a seahorse tank for your 40th, a perfect excuse if it’s the right time haha. Sounds like a great idea.
 

KDS

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Wow I can’t wait to watch this build! Take lots of pictures! I thought about going with a reef for my 210 after I got tired of cichlids but I chickened out due to costs. I’m going with a planted rainbowfish tank instead. But I can’t wait to see your progress!
 

Dennis57

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Good luck, and congrats on the birthday gift. Can't wait to see pictures
 

saltwater60

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Marsh980 said:
I hope so, just need to grab the live sand and dry rock.

I’m looking at:
2x boxes of TMC EcoReef A
3x boxes of TMC EcoReef E

I love this rock especially that it’s man made, has awesome shapes including branches and is porous.

I’m also looking at Natures Ocean live sand, possibly 6x large bags.

I’ve been told it’s very addictive and hard to keep freshwater when you’ve experienced saltwater. Maybe you could get a seahorse tank for your 40th, a perfect excuse if it’s the right time haha. Sounds like a great idea.
That is nice looking love rock. Not a bad price either. Porous rock is good. Water flow and denitrifying bacteria galore
 
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Marsh980

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KDS said:
Wow I can’t wait to watch this build! Take lots of pictures! I thought about going with a reef for my 210 after I got tired of cichlids but I chickened out due to costs. I’m going with a planted rainbowfish tank instead. But I can’t wait to see your progress!
Cheers and I'm very excited to delve into saltwater. I will take lots of pics and add onto here. i'll be happy to take any specific pics if people ask as i'm still a newbie when it comes to plumbing, set up etc.

I'm currently looking at the H2Ocean P4 PRO Dosing pump for feeding the corals (when i'm ready to get some). Just thought it makes sense to get the set up all done at the same time.

I can understand why you had reservations about costs, i knew it could be an expensive hobby but wow haha. However, i have been waiting 32 years to do this so wasn't go to pinch on the pennies. I suppose the majority is one off costs and I just need to get over the initial set up costs.

I love planted freshwater tanks, they can be so beautiful
 
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Marsh980

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Dennis57 said:
Good luck, and congrats on the birthday gift. Can't wait to see pictures
Thank you, its been 32 years in the waiting but I've finally pulled my finger out.
 
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Marsh980

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saltwater60 said:
That is nice looking love rock. Not a bad price either. Porous rock is good. Water flow and denitrifying bacteria galore
That's what i thought, my LFS recommended it. I was initially looking at the Caribsea Moani Dry Live rock because I liked that it was white, but my LFS said that its pretty dense and would turn purple anyway when coralline algae is present.

It maybe be also because a lot of the youtube videos out there showcase the white rock when aquascaping.
 

KDS

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It’s funny I just turned 40 today and my planted tank is my gift to myself. I’d like to set up a reef tank once I’m done with this one. Hopefully another 210. But I don’t know if it will be in the budget. The costs at this size of tank make the planning the hardest part!
 
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Marsh980

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KDS said:
It’s funny I just turned 40 today and my planted tank is my gift to myself. I’d like to set up a reef tank once I’m done with this one. Hopefully another 210. But I don’t know if it will be in the budget. The costs at this size of tank make the planning the hardest part!
Happy birthday - Hope you're having a great day and being spoilt!!

I knew the 220 would be expensive and i only wanted to go big or not at all. I've been waiting so long to do it that i really wanted to go as large as I could manage. I still was surprised with the cost and i was reading another member's tank build diary and he called the thread 'Money Pit' haha.
 

Wild Bill

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The money pit is mine. Lol. And it is a money pit.
 
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Marsh980

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One week down, just another 4 before i can start my saltwater reef journey. The excitement is building!!
 
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