Trying to figure it all out

heatherc369

Reefing newb
Hubby and I are trying to set up our first reef aquarium. We went to our LFS and they reccomended we look on craigslist for people selling complete set ups. We are overwhelmed not knowing what is a good deal and what is not. We have heard the bigger the better to start with and have fallen in love with a 125 gallon set up but they are asking $400 for it . I have attatched the description, the pics look brand new

**It's a 2 year old non drilled 125 gallon fish tank. Comes with a custom black canopy and a black stand. the tank does not leak at all. The back side has been painted royal blue. There is not any chips or scratches on the tank stand

Coming with the tank is also a 180 gallon wet/ dry filter. Comes 2 over flow boxes and bio balls. You can also convert it to a refugium or sump.

Also what Il throw in is a used 72in power compact light.

Also throw in many new bulbs**




And here is the other one we are debating:

Pre drilled Ecosystem, 10 gallon sump + 10 gallon automatic fresh water suply reserve, can be used to dose kalkwasser, all pumps , and power compact lights in good condition, only needs cleaning, rocks reef sand, water with necessary salt included. come and get it , custom cabinet with rock finish, will not last price is firm $275, only to drill each hole is $60 diamond dust is needed, text me
 
$400 for a 125g tank AND stand? If the stand looks good, I would think it's a good deal. I paid $225 for my 125g (but it has 2 built in overflows and drilled), nothing else. Most people like to charge an exorbitant amount for tanks that come w/ stands. Plus the wet/dry filter? Nice, but definitely skip the bioballs part (that's best left for freshwater). I always prefer predrilled tanks because I don't want to deal w/ hob overflows, but since theirs comes w/ the overflows, it's all up to how you think it looks.

OH and welcome to the site!

Shoot...2 more things....make sure you do a leak test!!! And the PC lights aren't really going to be strong enough for the 125g if you plan to have corals. But if you plan on only fish, they're fine.
 
Thanks for the welcome as well as your advice. I am going to attempt to add pictures of the tank we are thinking about getting for a visual aide. Also since we are newbies at this could you clear up why overflow is a pain? We have heard it before and also heard others saying they prefer pre-drilled tanks, and we have no idea what either one entails. All information is much appreciated.
 

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Also since we are newbies at this could you clear up why overflow is a pain? We have heard it before and also heard others saying they prefer pre-drilled tanks, and we have no idea what either one entails. All information is much appreciated.

It adds this bulk on the back of the tank, for starters, and salt creep from that back box sometimes. Then, if you lose siphon for some reason (like your pump slows down), then you run the risk of a flood because it's not siphoning fast enough through the utube. I've dealt with this before in my first tank. My pump sucked, couldn't get a new one, and always had to deal with bubbles in the utube because the water wasn't flowing fast enough.

Not to say built in overflows aren't problematic, as large snails can block flow...but in the years that I've had my 125g, never had that problem :D

But in the end, it's just preference. It's good to know the alternatives.

That's a gorgeous tank!! Better jump on it...that's an awesome deal, ASSUMING It has no leaks!
 
Well the first thing we asked the individual was if they mind filling it all the way and showing us there were no leaks and they are more then willing to do so.
 
Thanks for the welcome as well as your advice. I am going to attempt to add pictures of the tank we are thinking about getting for a visual aide. Also since we are newbies at this could you clear up why overflow is a pain? We have heard it before and also heard others saying they prefer pre-drilled tanks, and we have no idea what either one entails. All information is much appreciated.

Overflow is how the water from your tank gets to the sump underneath. Gravity sends it down and a pump returns it. "Drilled" tanks come with holes already made for you to connect plumbing to the sump with your tank. When the tank is not drilled, you have to either have it drilled or set up an overflow box, either inside or outside the tank in order for you to be able to use the sump. People prefer the predrilled tanks because they don't want the hassle (and risk) of drilling their own tank, or the added work required to set up an overflow box (not to mention the extra visible hardware on the tank). Hope this helps clarify overflow and I'm sure someone with more experience could explain it better.
 
Drilled tanks are easier and nicer looking. Overflow boxes work fine (I used an overflow box for my first tank), but they aren't as neat looking and are just another thing to check up on when you do your tank maintenance. Either way, you want a tank with a sump and refugium, so whether you accomplish that using a drilled tank or overflow boxes doesn't matter much. Both options are MUCH better than not having a drilled tank or not having an overflow box.
 
Thank you everyone, we have decided to get the 125 gal and do just fish for now and convert to reef at a later time :) More cost effective , and will give us time to learn more :D
 
Thank you everyone, we have decided to get the 125 gal and do just fish for now and convert to reef at a later time :) More cost effective , and will give us time to learn more :D

I think that's the best way to do it. Save up your money as you enjoy your fish, and research in the meantime. It's so important to buy good equipment the first time around. A lot of people don't research first, buy crap equipment, then end up having to replace it in 6 months, which costs them extra money. There are so many awesome fish options for a 125 that you will have fun with a fish-only tank (and some cool inverts for your clean up crew) until you are ready for corals.
 
Thats a nice tank for $400! My 90 was MUCH more than that!!! Makes me sick to think about it sometimes, but live and learn.

You might consider having the tank drilled before you set it up. Most good glass shops or aquarium stores can do it for you. Well, in my area there are two that will do it. Not sure around there. The stores here charge $60 per hole. They won't cover it if the tanks breaks, but they say they have never broken one either.

Welcome to the site! Hope you learn as much as I have. These are some real good folks here.
 
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