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:help: Hello all,

This is all new to me. I took a 100 gallon tank off my brother's hands to get it out of his garage thinking how easy it would be to set up. I was really excited and had all kinds of grand ideas... especially after looking up the beautiful photos online of freshwater planted tanks. I was told by my brother when I took it that it had everything it would need to get up and running right away. Well.. it turns out that the sump is completely not functional, it doesn't come with any type of functional lighting... OK basically it's turned out to be a tank and a stand. I need help and suggestions.

This may seem silly to a few long term hobbyist out there but I'm a beginner and I want to do this right. I am really excited to get this started BUT, this was supposed to be a little or no expense kind of thing... SO...

I am looking for any kind of suggestions where to start looking for inexpensive everything :icon_roll to get started. If anyone has anything extra and is in the area, I would be willing to come and pick up anything that could be spared, plants, fish, gravel, filters. They don't need to be anything special, just something to get me started.

Also, if anyone is in the area, Long Beach Ca, and knows of any good shops nearby, that would be great too.

Again... I am really looking forward to getting this started... thanks so much
 

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what is the demensions of the tank? What is your goals with it?
 

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The links above are a great spot to research what you still need/want to get setup nicely. As for getting equipment, try post a wanted post on craigslist and check the listings in your area for setups. There may be someone trying to offload some equipment cheap there. Just make sure it is in good condition.

This hobby isn't exactly "cheap" to get into and it does take some patience and research. Make sure you take some time and do the research first or you may end up disappointed with your results. With the right research and guidance, this can be a really rewarding hobby tho.

Good luck!
 

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To do this as inexpensively as possible is to have a low light, low tech tank. If you are any kind of do-it-your-selfer you can get relatively inexpensive lighting at AH Supply http://www.ahsupply.com/index.html. You can get 2 x 96 watt kit for $115. It comes with instructions for wiring into your hood. This will actually give you enough light to grow most anything; just SLOWLY.

Other hardware you'll need is a filter and a heater sufficient for a 100 gallon tank. Do some searches on the forum to help you select the best ones for your budget.

You can use soil mixed with sand as an option for the substrate. That will save you a lot of money there.

You might check to see whether there is a local aquatic plant group in your area (I KNOW there is). You can often get plants from other members at plant swaps.

It would probably be to your benefit to learn as much as possible about planted tanks beforehand, that way you'll know better what kind of tank you want and how you want it to look. Spend time just reading the forum. :icon_smil You'll learn a lot!
 
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