I think it's official. I've ordered a tank and most equipment to get started with a cycle. Before I did this, I reflected on a few different things: All the pains and negatives that took me out of the hobby in the first place. How did I feel about them now? Are there things I can do to keep that from happening again? Did I just forget about how bad it was? How much money would truly need to be invested to get started and ongoing? Understanding a lot about the hobby now, I was able to put together a pretty thorough list of equipment, media, test kits, plumbing, and tools needed. It's hard to dive in and halfway, then realize you need a new drill that'll cost way more, and *not* purchase that drill. Understanding what I would need beforehand was something I needed to realistically look at. What was my approach, and what was the final goal? Before I was just sort of take it as it comes. Now I have two really strong visions for where I want to take this tank, and this will allow me to realize if all the initial work and equipment will be enough. Deciding if this is just a quick phase of excitement, or if I would actually enjoy a very long term project. For example, I'm doing a dead rock cycle, which will probably take 3x longer and could have a few new tank problems. Is that going to be fun? If it's not fun for 3 months, then forget it. All that being said, I'm in it. My two visions are: Fishless SPS tank with only 3 - 5 corals. ULNS with controlled dosing, letting those 3 corals grow out into beautiful pieces (rather than collecting and stuffing a lot of diversity in). Minimal rockwork in the DT. Clown anemone tank: externally plumbed large sump, large skimmer, but smaller display tank. Possibly with a small group of clownfish (of course locally found at a breeder at a young age so they can grow up in a group). I'm a big fan of ocellaris! The start: setup ro/di, reservoir, mixing container setup DT in a good spot plumb everything together, as neatly as possible. 3 month cycle, dosing ammonia and trying out dr tim's one and only, with dead rock (marco rocks) Looking forward to mixing it up with you guys again! A little bit about myself: I started into the hobby just around college back in 2005 with a tiny acrylic finnex AIO tank. I loved it because of the people at BAR. Everyone was so kind and willing to help. I learned a lot. Not just about fish and reefkeeping, but about a community, being supportive, and how a small group of individuals can make such a big impact on things even outside of the hobby. I became a gear head, and really just loved the equipment. Reef chemestry was really interesting to me as well. But actually keeping animals alive was pretty crappy. I ended up with the most expensive toys and all the chemicals you can think of do dose with, but everything was dying or dead. I was pretty beat. I sold everything at a pretty nice price to people in the community (there were a lot of people in line for things), and that was probably the best thing that came out of it. I hope one day to see how all that stuff is going, including a lot of livestock that I had passed around as well. Since then, I successfully started a few tech companies, most failing horribly (as expected?) but a few did pretty well. I was proud of everything I've done, and the products I've built I've always had a strong vision for the community around them. I think that sense of community has been a huge part of what I've done, and a lot of it is thanks to my early days at BAR. Now, with my latest company being one that I simply am in love with, and with almost 0 in my bank accounts, I'm deciding to do the ridiculous and get back into a reef tank. I'm going simple, meaning no crazy gadgets to try to gain some shortcuts or creating problems. Oh, and I'm also going to try to take some time and help with the website when / where I can! I have a background in computer science (I've developed full stack web that supported millions of users per second from the ground up, all the way to iOS apps in the Apple App Store that were both Best new app featured, and the third top paid app in North America, and developed a new image/video processing engine that can edit 120 megapixel RAW images on mobile devices, doing draw operations in less than 10ms).