how do you buy a new aquarium?

Discussion in 'General Reef Topics' started by reeferdude, Feb 24, 2009.

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  1. Otty

    Otty Giant Squid

    Nov 20, 2006
    Elizabethtown, IN
    Good luck and take your time. Will save you a lot of money you can spend on top notch equipment.
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  3. MTips18

    MTips18 Purple Spiny Lobster

    Jun 14, 2008
    North Wales, PA
    i got my 125 with two overflows for 400.00 I don't know what your LFS' are doing
  4. Iraf

    Iraf Snowflake Eel

    Jan 20, 2008
    Tulsa, Ok
    you'll pay for a tank's brand and rep, Deep Sea Aquatics is the tanks I use and their expensive, my 90g drilled was $500 with no plumbing kit or bulkheads. I've owned 3 oceanics honestly I'll never buy another one just because I've grown to absolutely hate their overflow system I've become really fond of the overflows being in a corner not offset or centered makes it much easier to aquascape around in my opinion.

    You can go with a cheaper tank but it's a buyer beware market that truly lives up to the old saying "you get what you pay for" with marine equipment.
  5. Fusion

    Fusion 3reef Sponsor

    Feb 23, 2009
    tank purchases

    all previous posts have good points. from my point of view, i can help you out but i need to know what the tank wants to be...a reef tank, fish only?, etc. is all equipment going into stand? do you want to buy a stand?, canopy, lighting. all questions that depend on each other. its a moving target till you start making some decisions. i know it can be frustrating.

    Strictly speaking about tanks. glass or acrylic? i would choose glass over acrylic any day for a reef tank. coralline algae loves plastics and the more you clean, the more it scratches. which means the more buffing you will need to do...maintenance, maintenance, maintenance. especially if your a freak like me about aesthetically clean tanks and scratches.

    That said, for smaller tanks 50-300 gallons, glass is the way to go, i like rectangles anyway... good for fish swimming, for layout, visual and setting up an impressive reef. Anything larger than 300 - 400 then i start to look at acrylics. unless of course my customer is addiment about a funky shape or some unique angle or a clean edge. even then, im trying to talk him out of it.

    The up side to acrylic; stronger, lighter, clearer, stronger bond joints if from a professional manufact. and not if but when it does scratch, you can buff out the scratch (a major pain in the ass though for deep scratches that are towards the bottom of deeper tanks). The down side; aids in the growth of coralline algae & scratches really easily. With my clients that have acrylic tanks, i have a yearly buffing clause in my contracts so i make sure there are no surprises when the customer discovers that it will take 8 hours to remove all of his scratches!

    For the size your looking for glass would be the way to go, unless of course, as an earlier post suggested, you stumble on a real steal from craiglist for tank, stand, filtration... the whole nine for some cheap money.

    Overflow box a must for really any salt water system. but that means, sump, pump, in-sump or external skimmer and everything else associated with salt water sump systems. look at how the tank maunfacturer builds there boxes some styles are better than others.

    tank manufacturing; oceanic is pretty good and better than allglass but lately seems like they are having problems. Word on the street that perfecto is improving qc and surpassing allglass. if you go custom youll eat up that 2K quick. look around, on the net, call the company, ask questions and ask for a reference or two, cant hurt. Deep sea is company, i think all the oceanic fab guys started that company but more expensive! i dont know about glass cages regarding quality???

    Realistically though, for the money that you can spend, you want to go with a bigger manufacturer like oceanic, perfecto or allglass. ive never had a seam blow out. i have had some center plastic braces breakdown over time from MH lighting and age. but you can see the signs that there is wear and tare with regard to that. my first tank was a 38 gallon and it started to leak last year that tank is 25-28 years old and was broken down and moved about 10 check warranties as well. there is a reason why bigger companies produce cheaper tanks, cause they do it on volume. with volume regarding boxes that hold water means increase in exposure, lots of risk. if the company sucks and they have a ton of problems, in my opinion, the news would travel pretty quickly. so also look at how long the company has been in business. You will find minor things about each company that might bug you down the road. "they should have done this or why did they do that" but for the most part you want the thing to hold water for a long time and be built well enough to not have problems.

    feel free to email me if you have any ??

    good luck
    2 people like this.
  6. Froc3

    Froc3 Fire Goby

    Sep 19, 2007
    Saskatoon, Sk
    Go external overflow, then you'll have more room for swimming and aquascaping as well as more easily accessible. :) Just thought I'd throw more into the mix ;) This is a hard decision and is a long term investment so make it wisely.

    My first instinctual response to the title of the thread - "Uhhh... money?"
  7. Viper3166

    Viper3166 Feather Duster

    Dec 17, 2006
    NorthEast PA
    I would check out, I had my 180 custom build from there and they have delivery point at which you can meet them to pick up the tank. They are based out of tennessee. I know I've had goodluck with them.
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  9. PharmrJohn

    PharmrJohn The Dude

    Jun 29, 2008
    Shelton, Washington
    I am a big Craig's List fan for this sort of thing. People are dumping aquariums left and right now. It is unfortunate that people have fallen onto hard times, but that is a big reason tanks are being released right now. Get a little closer to April 15th and I will bet you more deals will come up. Just take your time and plan it out. Like it was said in an earlier post, that 2K will go quickly. But at least you have a good amount of capital to start off with. That is indeed advantageous.
  10. gregger

    gregger Spanish Shawl Nudibranch

    Feb 25, 2009
    Annapolis, MD
  11. stevenbaker21

    stevenbaker21 Astrea Snail

    Dec 28, 2008
    Make sure to get all your equipment (protein skimmer, lights, etc.) either thru an online store, ebay, craigslist, etc. LFS charge out the ass! Even if you have to buy piece by piece its worth it, will save you lots. Good luck!