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SunSun Aquarium.       4/23/15
Date: Thu, 23 Apr 2015 18:18:05 +0800
Nice day, dear!
Glad to introduce you SunSun Aquatic Group, one of the biggest aquatic products manufacturers in China, founded in 1985 and fully owns 9 big factories with over 1,500 workers.
<Impressive! Bob Fenner>
Products: aquariums, aquarium LED lights, aquarium filters, water pumps, air pumps, heaters, filter medias...
Service: all products with 12 months warranty.
Welcome to contact us for any possible deals any time!
Thank you.
wishes & regards!
SUNSUN Aquatic
Group Guangzhou office
Guang Zhou City Weierma Electrical Co., Ltd
Tel: +86 20 3641 5101-810
Fax: +86 20 3640 1571
Skype: weierma_vincent
Mobile&WhatApp: +86 188 9857 7590
Add: T3-228 room, Bolin Global International Business Center, No.693 of Shicha Road,Baiyun District,510430Guangzhou
City, China.
Visit our website at: www.gzsunsun.com 
Leader and biggest aquatic & pond products, garden equipments manufacturer in China!
Committed to providing better enjoyable life for your love fish!
Re: RE: SunSun Aquarium.        4/24/15
Dear Robert Fenner,
Thanks for your quick email back. Hope you are doing well.
Pls kindly download our full range products catalogs for you by this Weblink viaWeTransfer.com.
Any interested models pls let us know in time. Thank you!
Hope to hear from you soon.
Nice day!
Best wishes & regards!
Vincent Huang

Aquarium Journals: Marine Edition 2/7/09 Hi there Bob, <Ahh, Lisa. Good to find you still about, in our mutual interest> I hope you are well and that business is great. I was in contact with you way back in 2003....I met you down in San Diego to get some advice and even ran some ads on WWM. In the meantime I got VERY sidetracked, having a family and what not...your recommendation on how to market my journals when I started was right on. <Ahh!> That recommendation was to get in the car and travel the country, journals in tow...that worked when I had the time. What I'm looking for now is an independent sales rep that handles marine products. The journals have been selling quite well with Marine Depot, Amazon and via my website but that is all I have time for and I still have 3500 books in inventory that I would LOVE to move. <I'll bet!> I am willing to give a significant amount of the proceeds to someone who can move my inventory. It would definitely be worth it for someone with contacts. Do you know a rep that may be interested? <Mmm... possibly... Am going to ask a couple of friends/associates in the trade here to contact you if you're interested... I'll BCC them> I can give you more details if you need them just let me know...I'm trying to keep this super short because of the volume of emails you receive. I look forward to your reply, have a great weekend. Sincerely, Lisa Harwood www.aquariumjournals.com<http://www.aquariumjournals.com/> <Thank you my friend. Bob Fenner> Re: Aquarium Journals: Marine Edition, Bob Fenner asking for your consideration Liza, I'm an old friend of Bob's and received this email. May I suggest you call Eric Rhinehard at Drs. Fosters & Smith. His number is 715-361-9460 and tell him I told you to call. He handles all the marine stuff there and maybe you can make an exclusive offer to him for the entire inventory. Good Luck! Phil Cooper <Hello to you Phil (and your brother Roger, your daughter (in the trade still?) in Australia... and thank you. Bob Fenner>

Bristle Worm Trap -- 06/28/08 Hi Bob, <Daren> I came up with a pretty good design/invention for a bristleworm trap. Been doing some beta (haha) testing in my own reef tank and it works great. Even been able to get these guys during lighted hours with my invention. I think this is great considering these are nocturnal creatures. I even thought about recording it. In reading the related articles about bristleworms on WetWebMedia, I get the understand that some bristleworm may be harmful and some helpful. But too many of a good thing can be bad too. <All so> I think my invention is far superior to the ones currently on the market and has shown that it really works. Therefore, I was wondering if you have any contacts or companies that you think I should reach to pitch my invention. <Mmm... actually... I'd consider making it yourself, putting it on the Net, and selling it direct... much faster, profitable and more satisfying... am going to ask fellow WWM Crewmember Scott Vallembois to chime in here... as he makes, sells some products for the interest himself...> Your response will greatly be appreciated and I would consider even providing some sort of compensation if this is successful. Sincerely, Daren <And I'll chat with you further. Bob Fenner>

Re: Bristle Worm Trap -- 06/28/08 Hi Bob, <Daren> Just wanted to say one more thing about my invention. The trap are safe enough to do a catch and release of the bristleworms. Thus, one can catch and dispose of the unwanted species and return the more favorable ones. Additionally, what is your opinion of such a product and do you see a market for such an item? <Mmm, there is a niche market... and we have such a huge turnover... more than 100% a year... that there are steady numbers of new customers...> The product is aesthetically appealing and very durable. Nothing flimsy and cheap. I've started to build several test models. Thank you in advance for your opinion. Sincerely, Daren <Again, perhaps a prelim. patent search (to tie all up)... IF done on the cheap... starting a website... seeing if it will sell... BobF>

Re" Bristle Worm Trap, ScottV's valuable input.  -- 06/28/08 Hi Bob, <Daren> I came up with a pretty good design/invention for a bristleworm trap. Been doing some beta (haha) testing in my own reef tank and it works great. Even been able to get these guys during lighted hours with my invention. I think this is great considering these are nocturnal creatures. I even thought about recording it. In reading the related articles about bristleworms on WetWebMedia, I get the understand that some bristleworm may be harmful and some helpful. But too many of a good thing can be bad too. <All so> I think my invention is far superior to the ones currently on the market and has shown that it really works. Therefore, I was wondering if you have any contacts or companies that you think I should reach to pitch my invention. <Mmm... actually... I'd consider making it yourself, putting it on the Net, and selling it direct... much faster, profitable and more satisfying... am going to ask fellow WWM Crewmember Scott Vallembois to chime in here... as he makes, sells some products for the interest himself...> <<Hello Daren, Scott here with you. I agree with Bob, you should definitely be making this product yourself. Selling direct to the end consumer is far and away going to be the most profitable for you with such a product. For about $30 you can have a website shopping cart going selling your product on the net through sites such as GoDaddy, WebSiteTonight, etc. These sites make it very easy to setup, just point and click. Our site Glass-Holes.com is an example of these simple shopping carts. I originally met Bob contacting him for advertising on WWM. The advice he gave me is that the best advertising in this industry is word of mouth. This has held very true in my experience. You can spend thousands and see little result. Get some of these units out there for people to use, preferably those active in the forums (sigh). Also, do consider at least a provisional patent. This will cost you just a few hundred dollars and allow you to use the patent pending statement and a year of protection on your product, at which point you will need to apply for a full patent if it seems worthwhile. If you do setup a site to sell these, please contact me (personal email above), I can help you with the basics of design to generate traffic and hopefully sales. Good luck with this venture, Scott V.>> Your response will greatly be appreciated and I would consider even providing some sort of compensation if this is successful. Sincerely, Daren <And I'll chat with you further. Bob Fenner>

How Do I Sell It?  - 04/14/08 I have a dry good product that I would like to make and sell. It is not an aquarium or a filter or fish food or any of the "usual" suspects. How do I go about getting my product onto shelves and into on-line stores? <A couple of approaches... depending on how much time/effort you want to put in... and wait: Trying it locally... at fish stores... ask them to use some/put some up for sale... Maybe with a "silent salesperson" print-panel of your devising. I'd do this first... to get valuable feedback, spiff up the product/features, and develop your packaging, labeling, UPC... Concurrently, I'd start a website and try your hand at etailing it... Next in escalation/"surge": Taking the product about yourself to regional retailer and higher (distribution, manufacturer... e.g. PIDA, APPMA) shows, seeing if some of these might want to take the product on... either help with sales/distribution... or even manufacturing... i.e. license it... Last and most costly, take the product about (road show) to the folks/entities just listed, make presentations... or hire a rep./firm to do this for you... likewise time and money-consuming.> How do I protect myself from the unscrupulous? <Copyrights and patents... pending is about all the good, time you need... See an outfit that does this "express", for a fixed fee. MUCH to state here> Who should I talk to and how do I contact them? <... depends on who you are and what you want to do. Vague answer to a similarly vague question> Nobody really has a link to "sell us your items" on their web site :-). I would be very grateful for a pointer or two or redirection to where I can find this kind of information. Thank you. Wes <... Let's keep chatting if this is too general, unclear and/or incomplete. Cheers, Bob Fenner>

Re: How Do I Sell It?  - 04/14/08 Thank you Bob. I did have this approach in mind and I do think it is a good one. I am a member of the local reefers club and I think I can give a few units away for testing and feedback and then approach some local LFS for limited sales there. <Ah, great. A good approach> You and I did in fact talk on the phone about my idea a few years back. Ensuing "life" events prevented me from actively moving forward but you were very encouraging at the time. This time for sure :-).  <Ahh!> Would you have time/be willing to take a look at my design and give me some cursory input? Wes <Sure. BobF><RMF did... and the idea has plenty of promise...>

Acrylic aquarium... fabrication. Looking to learn in/from Malaysia, Thailand   5/3/07 Hi Bob, 1. I would like to learn to bond and bend 1 in to 2 in thick 8 ft length acrylic sheet. 2. Is there any colleges in USA or elsewhere I can learn? <Mmm, none that I'm aware... but no doubt there are such...> 3. Is there any books or website I can refer to ? <Ditto> 4. Is there any companies out there who is willing to teach ? <Contact them... likely the closest such "acrylic/Perspex..." Plastic fabricator/dealer in your area is worth calling, contacting re whether they'd take you on...> I am willing to pay for it. Thank you. <What area do you live in? Do use the Net (search tools) and Yellow Page/Phone directories under the word "Plastic" to find companies in your area... There are several places in the U.S. that you might visit re.> Subject : email from Mr. Thanaphon Manavatioeth of Thailand 1. I recently read your email regarding coral reef aquarium. 2. Salt water fish is extremely difficult to maintain, costly too. 2a. Many people failed because of cost and difficulty to maintain. 3. For a start, I would suggest to start with fresh water fish, which is much easier to maintain and low cost. <Good advice!> after you have gain the necessary know-how, than do the salt water fish.4. You mentioned that you have worked with acrylic aquarium before, if you have any experience in bonding and bending 1 in and 2 in thick 8 ft length size ? I would like to learn from you. 5. I am from Malaysia, if necessary we can meet up in Thailand.6. My email address is kimchoo_59@hotmail.com .  Thank you. <Mmm, I will take the risk and post your email addr. here... Am hopeful that someone/s will come forward to assist you. Bob Fenner> Water heating, cooling... marketing   1/10/07 Robert; <Peter> Thank you for your timely reply.  As I am in the process of learning as much as I am able in the way of product knowledge for Peltech ( http://www.peltech.com), I would prefer to wait until your return. They (Peltech) have asked me to undertake a marketing and distribution project here in the US, and I am in the process of getting a better sense of the market, its segmentation and the classes of trade for options in distribution. <Am very sure you will find it/this very interesting... the industry is... what's a kind euphemism... diffuse? Some consolidation from large/r industries in recent years... but...>   Enjoy Hawaii, and while the consensus of opinion would have most there for vacation, I can bet you are doing some interesting business as well. <Ah, yes. You are perceptive> I look forward to speaking with you upon your return. Kindest Regards, Peter Laitmon <Bob Fenner> >Robert; ><Peter> >As an independent marketing consultant, (having come out of the agency >business many years ago) I thoroughly enjoy the aspects of what I do that allow me to be introduced to interesting products and people. ><Ahh... what folks "do" for work... a balance twixt compensation and enjoyment> >One such product is made in Italy and for lack of a better word at the moment, deals with the conditioning (heating and cooling) of water in tanks. As part of my due diligence for this new client, I had the pleasure of meeting their UK distributor located in Scotland; who could not stop raving about you and what you do for and within the industry in general, and here in the US in particular. ><Glad to be well-regarded in my field> >I would enjoy speaking with you and wonder what the most convenient time might be to try and connect. >Kindest Regards, >Peter Laitmon ><Mmm, am out in Hawai'i for the month of January... is this something that might be discussed via email? Bob Fenner> Additives product development  11/12/06 I own an online aquarium supply business and I am interested in starting my own line of additives, etc. Where should I look for information? <Re? Formulations? Mmm, other products... the computerized bibliographic tools (large college library) like Chem Abstracts...> Do I need to worry about patents or other similar considerations? <Generally not... there are some patented compounds... but most all are not proprietary> Also, is this a worthwhile endeavor? <A good question...  Can be, very... but need "ins" to selling, distribution... to make worthwhile. Can be done with a "low budget" approach... but do bear in mind the development of branding, real/ongoing/repeat sales takes years...> Any information would be greatly appreciated. Thanks, Ron Looker <Bob Fenner>

Who are the top aquarium decoration manufacturers in the US?  - 09/14/06 Items such as sand, colored rock, someone that can make custom pieces from plastics, center pieces, etc? <Mmm, none in the U.S. as far as I'm aware... Blue Ribbon et al. are made in the Far East...> Where can I locate facts and figures on sales numbers in the aquatic decoration industry? <Not collated by anyone other than distributors I'd guess... and this info. likely treated as proprietary... If you're interested in fabrication, sales/distribution in the trade, I'm willing to grant you what little recent insight I have... some friends have in the last few years "duked it out" in the making of artificial corals... There may be room for another "player" if what you have in mind is "nice", unique... not too-expensive... Have you asked about re distribution as yet? This is often a very useful way of determining whether your product/s/line will "make it". Bob Fenner> Thanks for your help. Shelly Newman

Re: Who are the top aquarium decoration manufacturers in the US?  9/15/06 Can you give me the insight you have on fabrication, sales and distribution. <Will try... what do you have in mind?> What I have in mind is indeed unique, nice and not too expensive.... Also, don't know anything about redistribution. Obviously a novice with an "idea" and looking to make it big in the American way....or hopefully just make a living. Thanks for all your help. Shelly Newman <Best to "shop around" with what you have... some local stores... even on consignment... See if what you have size, shape, color-wise is viable... will sell... place some in their systems, on their shelves... And (the cheapest route to go) the Net... develop (if you haven't done so already) a logo, name/tag... and some pix of what you have on offer, price for purchase, shipping... If/when all appears to be "sell-able", approach some of the independent rep.s in the trade (can be found in the back of pet industry publications) and if nearby, one or two distributors in the trade (make an appointment, presentation, following a call or two...) and get their take on what they might be willing to do. Bob Fenner> New Plastic Plant Business  7/9/06 Hello WWM Crew! I am a fish store owner and have recently been contacted by a company called "American Naturals".  The "owner" just walked into my store and began explaining about his business.  He said that he had been in business (family owned apparently) for over 35 years. < Been in business for over 35 years and this is the first you have heard of him.> Their business is strictly plastic plants for both freshwater and saltwater.  Their products have a base made up of a pebble style rock with a "secret" resin to hold it together.  According to the owner, the resin has not been patented because "they would have found it out a long time ago".  He doesn't deal in silk plants - he said the silk has only been around for 10 years but earlier told me that the silk plants were introduced, by his company, over 25 years ago. Just wondering if anyone has been contacted, or has been in business, with this company and what their reputation is.  He said that they don't deal with chain stores or large pet stores - just "mom and pop" style.  Their company is located in White Cloud, Michigan. Their products seem great, but I am afraid to try anything from a person coming off the street.  They are not listed in any pet supplies directory, and he says that they do a lot of business in Michigan and Florida.  I hate being skeptical, but I have to protect not only myself and my store, but my customers as well.  He seemed very vague on a lot of his answers to my questions.  Was hoping that someone has heard of them or has done business with them. Thanks so much! Wendy Legeret Wendy's Blue Lagoon www.wendysbluelagoon.com < It is not unusual for a small manufacturer to try and want to deal direct. The big distributors/warehouse people really beat these guys down on their prices. I have never heard of them either. If it was up to me I would ask for references from at least six other stores. I would ask if he was selling to any other stores that I would consider competition. If I liked the product then I would try a minimum order and ask him to contact me again by email in a month. Ask for samples. If he truly is producing these then they really should cost next to nothing. I would talk terms. If they are in it for the long haul then they should back their product and be willing to wait for their money. Never prepay for an order. Try some of the plants out in your store aquariums and see how they hold up and how they look underwater. Hard to believe a family could make a living on plastic plants but I guess it is possible.-Chuck> <<Readers note: Chuck Rambo is a serious collector of "olde aquarium junk"... has a large collection, seeks out on the Net... RMF>>

Testing Plants/Objects for An Aquarium   7/10/06 Dear Chuck, Thank you for your speedy reply - that's what I love about you guys!  :) He did leave me samples - several, and when I say several, I am talking at least 20.  These samples range anywhere from 1.5" to 18" in height - most of them mid size.  I did ask him for references - for new customers within the last six months to a year and he said that he would have to get back to me on that one. < Actually you want to hear from old customers who have used his plants successfully for the past 35 years without any problems.> As for payment, he does accept credit cards, checks, and money orders as well as C.O.D.  C.O.D. is probably the way I will go for a while if I do intend to purchase from him.  He said at one point in our conversation when we were talking about paying for the items, "Just send me the damn check". Very strange answer and to me, very unprofessional. < Small business owners who do it all can't all be great salesman. Maybe that is why they are still small.> As for putting them in my aquariums at the store, I am a little hesitant. Maybe I am just paranoid, but I don't want anything to go wrong with my livestock, or my tanks. I also asked him about tests - he said, "What do you mean?"  I said, product testing.  His reply was very vague - "We have had our plants in stores for over 35 years and nothing has ever gone wrong."  He also said that he tests his product through his customers and if they don't come back with a response, that everything is fine.  This worries me - A LOT. First of all, manufacturers, a true manufacturer, would be constantly testing their products themselves.  They don't wait for the public to "complain". < Actually the consumer complaint is the only real test for many manufacturers. They don't spend money on a lab and testing. Very very few manufacturers have testing labs.> Secondly, if you are putting out a product that is to be used for living creatures such as fish, reptiles, etc., wouldn't you have to test this product, legally anyway, in order to sell it? < No. You are selling ornamental tropical fish. If you were selling food fish for consumption then it is a whole different set of rules.> Third, some companies would not even complain if the product went bad.  I know of several companies that just write it off as a bad business expense. Personally, I would be the first in line making my complaint if anything like that ever happened to me. < People usually don't complain. They don't return or reorder.> Fourth, the same goes for the public (the customer).  There are so many people out there who do not even care about what happens in their tank, while others are so careful about what they put in there, they are almost paranoid - kind of like me!  :) < That is the difference between successful aquarists and non-successful aquarists.> Is there a lab or something that you know of that I can send one of these plants to for testing?  I just want to make sure all my bases are covered. Thanks so much!! Sincerely, Wendy Legeret < There are lots of labs that will take your money and test for anything.  Two problems. What are they testing for and what concentration are harmful to aquatic life? Salt is needed for life , yet too much salt will kill anything. I think summer is the slow period for retail stores. Many probably won't survive the summer. With the price of gas people don't have the disposable cash available for extras like ornamental fish. I suspect that he is being forced to expand his customer base to make the same amount of money. Plastics and resins have been around for a long time. The ones that kill fish are probably not around too much. I would be less concerned about toxins and more concerned about his business practices. Get references, an address, a price list, a phone number and a guarantee that you can return them if there are any problems. My problem with plastic plants is the bright lighting on many of today's aquariums tends to fade and weaken  them. If business gets better will he still be able to supply you with the products you need? -Chuck>

Patent or not  11/11/05 Hi Bob, <Ryan> I know you have a wealth of experience in the aquarium industry and was hoping you might have some advice. <Mmm, only "what I would/might do in similar circumstances"> A number of aquarium/reef products/devices are patented while others apparently are not from what I've been able to find.   <Yes> In general, these unpatented devices don't seem to have excessive competition from other manufacturers/vendors.  For a rather simple (it seems anyway) improvement on a device (or adjunct to said device), what are your thoughts on needing to patent it prior to try to sell it in the trade/industry? <Mmm, can (along with preliminary searches for a few hundred dollars), make 'application" for such... seems to "hold up" w/o all the expense and time going by...> I know you aren't a patent attorney (....or are you?? Ha) but thought I'd like to get your take on this. Thanks for your help. Regards, Ryan <Glad to offer vague to more specific input. By and large patenting is not suggested/urged... unnecessary in the ornamental aquatics trade. Better to search to find that you're not (likely) infringing on someone else's, go ahead with trying to sell or develop ideas... Bob Fenner>

Mold-maker for ozone injector 11/4/05 Dear Sir, We first take a liberty make a introduction to you. We {are} Santong Mould Corporation, a manufacturer which specializes in mould and all kinds of plastic production. On your website, we found that you have been using ozone injector which originally was invent by Mazzie injector. And we also could provide this kind of injector with 6 different sizes and based on more lower price also (our price is about 25% of Mazzei's injector). Please kindly find the production photo and relevant quotation as attachment. Originally, this injector was provided by a corporation which is the China general agent of Mazzie corporation. And they asked we make the mould for this kind of injector. So we done. And received good reputation. The injector we copied have been sold to so many China ozone equipment corporation. E.g.. www.ao-run.comwww.ylsw.netwww.chinaguanyin.com, www.jlfish.com,  www.xianlu.com.  As the same quality with Mazzie' s and more competitive price than Mazzei's. We are trying to promote our production lines to your country and EU region.  For your information, we have cooperated well with the follow company in your local country: CREATIVE CONCEPTS  (A Unit of CREATIVE OZ-AIR (I) PVT. LTD.) Dr. Subodh Bhatnagar F - 62, Sector - 8, Noida - 201301 (U.P.) Phone: 91 - 120 - 2424993, 2424988, 2424862, 3097121 Direct Line 91-120-2251810,3945411 Mobile: (91) 9810028966, 9810077061 What a big profit gap!!!  Please kindly give us a opportunity, making sure both of us will be getting much profits from future transaction. Thanks and best regards! Jason Du Santong Mould Corp. No.9, Jiefang RD. Ningbo ,ZJ CN Tel: 86-574-81129471 Fax: 86-574-87126038 <Will post your co.s msg. Bob Fenner> 

WWM Biz  9/12/05 Hi We are a company specialized in wholesaling and retailing service of marine fish in HK.  To further develop our business scope within the territory our company has been actively looking for suppliers providing products of decent quality.  As we have derived the business information of your company through your website, we strongly believe that your company could give us ample supply of the related products. Thanks you very much Anson Aqua Union www.aquaunion.net <Mmm, actually we don't sell anything other than "content" for print, Net media... Good luck, business to you. Bob Fenner>

Chemistry... new aquatics co. 8/11/05 Bob, <Craig> I have just read your article. <Which?> My company produces various products for aquarium use and the mission of the products is to create a slow and deliberate change to the water condition of the microcosm. <Spelling...> Currently I am getting ready to present to the EPA why our products are water conditioners and not Plant Growth Regulators. <Oh, yes> My intention has always been understanding the solvent characteristic of water and its direct influence on metabolism. Shifts in pH values at .001 are significant. <Can be> The trick has been to create buffers that are stable enough at low levels to shift ph slowly and not have the current condition of the macro environment of the aquarium overpower the reaction. <Is a tender interplay> Most people view the Oceans or any large volume of water as massive units. When you reduce the large volume to a cubic Millimeter of solution the differential ions within have a fragile interface with each other. The EPA has regulations that do not consider delicate balances as significant. <Wait till their pensions are involved... it's coming> This makes for delicate negotiations for non registry of products. Bob, I would like to use your article  "The Conscientious Marine Aquarist" [Acidity/Alkalinity, pH] as a reference. Could I get you to send me via e-mail a copy of the article, I cannot download it from the internet. I would be happy to compensate you. Thank you for your time, Sincerely Craig <... can be copied, pasted... Bob Fenner>

Glass Hydrometers, Thermometers 7/22/05 e-mail : eximcon@mail.ru          eximcon@gmail.com Phone : 91-171-2699280, FAX    : 91-171-2699780, EXPORT IMPORT CONSORTIUM 38, Azad Nagar, Jagadhri Road, AMBALA CANTT 133006 (India) .JULY 22, 2005.  Dear Sirs :           We can offer you world class Glass Hydrometers, for every industry and in scales such as  Beaume, Brix, Specific Gravity, Density, Twaddell, Sikes, Petroleum, Milk, Sugar, Sachharimeters, Soil, Latex, etc in all standard ranges, and invite your valued enquiries for above as also Thermometers, Laboratory Glassware, etc  .         Suraj Parkash

Aquarium Equipments Dear sir/lady, We're an Turkish Importer / Exporter company, ADAD INTERNATIONAL SHIPPING AND TRADING CO LTD , established 2004 in Izmir / Turkey . At the beginning ADAD, birth for international shipping and forwarding agency, after that by the ADAD Client's requiry ADAD has rolled himself to the International Trading business and opened a new department for this. Now ADAD activities are, International Shipping Agent , International Forwarding Agent and International Trading. You can see our Ship agency services details at http://www.adad.com.tr Many years before, we're in the aquarium equipments and aquarium fish selling business. To day we're looking for import the cheap aquarium equipments (Water and Air Pump's, Plant's, Decoration's, Filter's, Decorative Stone's, ...e.g..) We're waiting your Catalog and price list if available. Taskin  SEZIK ADAD INTERNATIONAL Kibris Sehitleri Cad. 1443 Sok. No: 185/202 Alsancak / Izmir / TURKEY Phn     :+90 232 464 14 34 Fax     :+90 232 464 83 25 Mobile :+90 533 4910098 e-mail  : adad@adad.com.tr ; sezik@adad.com.tr msn     : tksezik@hotmail.com web     : http://www.adad.com.tr <We don't sell such gear, but will post your message on our site in the hopes other folks will contact you. Bob Fenner>

LR/S idea Question and Praise Bob: <Rick> I have been a fan for a few years now. I have read your columns, used your advice re: live rock and sand, and had a wonderful reef tank by utilizing your methods and advice (I am a lurker... just reading, using your advice and quietly reaping the benefits ::grinning:: ). <Sounds good> I have moved a few times and my old tank was given to a friend back in 2002. I still have the 'bug' (don't we all!) and still find your articles and read them from time-to-time. And enjoy your knowledge as well as your humour. Keep up the good work! <Will endeavor to do so> I have an off the wall question for you involving a business idea with live rock/sand and would like to discuss it with you for your take on the matter. I have an opportunity for something unique, or should I say a 'variation on a theme' that may be kind of cool. Please let me know if you would be willing to discuss it with me <Could we do so on the Net? Time is dear> Rick Kasparek West Texas (in the area of the old Permian Sea... near the extinct Capitan Reef)    <I remember it well... Bob Fenner> Making LR Bob... Here in West Texas, in Imperial is a Shrimp Farm that is the first to be certified 'Organic' by the USDA. The gentleman that started the farm is a marine biologist who saw an opportunity to utilize the Permian Sea water that exists underground to raise shrimp. Cool idea and it seems to be working. Seagulls in the desert (how do they know where to find shrimp?)! <Amazing creatures... how did they get on out to Utah? Flying I guess...> At any rate I have approached the gentleman and we have a meeting on Saturday to discuss the possibilities of combining what he is doing with the seawater with raising live rock. This shrimp farm is located within what used to be the Capitan Reef (back a few [million] years ago). Fairly close to this area are parts of the reef that are exposed and fossils of ancient reef critters are exposed. <Yes> Are you familiar with Aragocrete from Garf? <Yes> The idea is that I might be able to make molds of the fossils, build 'rock' in their shape and charge them with 'life' to produce a 'live' simulated fossil from the Permian Sea - Capitan Reef... grown in Permian Sea water. An oddity perhaps, but with the available sea water in a controlled environment, I figure it may even add nutrients to the shrimps' diet. <Could be done> Okay... so much for the off-the-wall idea. I just figured that with all of that salt water just sitting there being used by shrimp, I might be able to tag along and raise captive live rock. Your thoughts thus far? Regards, Rick <I would look into the possibility of using what is there instead of "making" phony cement rock... the "Arago" products are too toxic, cost too much labor and materials to be practical IMO. Some natural carbonaceous material there could likely be made to work however. Bob Fenner> Re: LR making, tok to LeGuin Actually that was my first choice... second choice was looking for a 'gimmick' I guess. But nothing wrong with utilizing Live Rock from Capitan Reef. Just wanted your take on it. Thanks! <The gimmick, hook in my lingo, would/will be the origin... ancient reef, made anew!> Keep up the good work - I know you will. Rick <Thank you my friend. BobF>

Aqua-Craft Suing an Aquarium Club? Hey Bob! I was wondering if you heard of or knew anything about this since both parties are in your general area, http://www.reefcentral.com/forums/showthread.php?s=&threadid=519405 To me, it seems like a colossally bad PR decision on the part of Aqua-Craft. -Steven Pro <What... does (presumably still AC owner) Mike del Prete think he's doing? Well... thanks for bringing this to my attention. MikedP mentioned to me a few years back that he ought to sue me, Microcosm re the use of the name (Conscientious) "Marine Aquarist"... as somehow he is under the impression that he "owns" a copyright on the term. Methinks he's not quite "with it"... a shame, as his wit and drive in the trade were (by me) very enjoyed for many years. I do know the folks at MARs... including Brian Prestwood, a very nice fellow... and am always disturbed to see such "lawsuits". Whacky and a waste of time to stir up such trouble IMO. Am cc'ing Brian and Dan of MARs here re my offer to do what I might... I don't know... call Mike re? Bob Fenner> 

Aquatronics Hey Bob, Long time.  Do you have any contact information for the Mfg of Aquatronics media bags? <Mmm, they're still in business, listed in the new Pet Business Magazine Annual Guide. No URL but their physical address: P.O. Box 2457, Oxnard, CA 93034, numbers: 805-486-2616, FAX 486-2491> Also, our newest small units will be available soon and I will send you some beta samples.   Look forward to seeing you before the next Interzoo! Robert <Man! It's about time RK2 made something's for the aquarists themselves! Great to hear. Bob Fenner> Aquarium Rock Biz In the Spring/Summer of 2005, I want to start a business selling rocks for aquariums.  Caves are dramatic and functional additions to aquarium aquascaping.  Generally, owners create them by arranging a group of individual rocks. Being a serious aquarist, I too do this. But, I always wanted to find an individual rock with a cave already carved into it.  I never found one that was really as dramatic as I had hoped.  So I decided to make one out of cement. <Neat> I chose a rock with a very interesting shape and molded an exact replica with one exception - I built a cave into it.  I painted, dyed and stained the rock. I was amazed at the results.  It looked like a chunk of granite with a natural cave.  Then I decided to take it a step further - a series of caves built into a large rock. Then further - a tunnel through a rock.  Then further still - caves with interconnecting tunnels.  To date, I have also created an underwater volcano, a geyser, an underwater grotto and an underwater air-filled grotto for amphibians (the grottos have a view port so that you can see inside).  I'm sure there will be new ideas by next year. <Very exciting> I am looking for feedback from professionals.  The rocks will not be inexpensive.  I have not developed a price list yet because I don't know my costs but producing them is labor intensive.  I will say, however, that I have seen those large plastic mountain rocks go for as much as $40!  I would expect my rocks, depending on their complexity, to retail for more than that.   I would really appreciate it if you could provide me with feedback and any further thoughts.  Thanks for your time. Bart Purcell <A few things to consider... shipping... darn things are heavy, and can/do break... And distribution in our industry... with keystoning typically occurring about twice... so... your selling price for a forty dollar item would gross ten dollars to you, likely maximum. You might try (this is what I'd do, have done!) initially making, selling to your local markets... ask the LFS if they'll even let you sell pieces on consignment, maybe contact the service companies (you can find these in your phone directories) if they can use your products... Later, if/when you hone your processes, you can try attracting a wider audience. Good luck in your new venture. Bob Fenner>

Aquarium Rock I really need your advice. In the Spring/Summer of 2005, I want to start a business selling rocks for aquariums.  Caves are dramatic and functional additions to aquarium aquascaping.  Generally, owners create them by arranging a group of individual rocks. Being a serious aquarist, I too do this. But, I always wanted to find an individual rock with a cave already carved into it.  I never found one that was really as dramatic as I had hoped.  So I decided to make one out of cement. I chose a rock with a very interesting shape and molded an exact replica with one exception - I built a cave into it.  I painted, dyed and stained the rock. I was amazed at the results.  It looked like a chunk of granite with a natural cave.  Then I decided to take it a step further - a series of caves built into a large rock. Then further - a tunnel through a rock.  Then further still - caves with interconnecting tunnels.  To date, I have also created an underwater volcano, a geyser, an underwater grotto and an underwater air-filled grotto for amphibians (the grottos have a view port so that you can see inside).  I'm sure there will be new ideas by next year. I am looking for feedback from professionals.  The rocks will not be inexpensive.  I have not developed a price list yet because I don't know my costs but producing them is labor intensive.  I will say, however, that I have seen those large plastic mountain rocks go for as much as $40!  I would expect my rocks, depending on their complexity, to retail for more than that. My questions are: 1.       Is there a market for this? < Probably not. Most aquarists like to see their fish and only lightly aquascape their aquariums. While the fish may appreciate the caves and hiding places the aquarist may not. 2.       Do you think an item like this could only be sold at "up-scale" aquarium shops. < Usually the ornament is actually placed in one of the tanks at the store so customers can see it being used and how it appears under actual tank conditions., Store would not like an item in which the fish could hide and not be seen by the customers. 3.       Would you consider selling this product? < If you think one of you ornaments would retail for $50 then figure at least 1/2 would go to the store $25. If you sold them wholesale than you would get 1/2 of the price that the retail store would buy them for $12.50. I would suggest that if you really want to sell your product that you try and sell them online and develop your own website. Build some proto types and see if your local fish store has any interest and can give you some direct feedback.-Chuck> I would really appreciate it if you could provide me with feedback and any further thoughts. < Go to eBay and check out aquarium stuff and see how much these things really go for. Chuck>   Thanks for your time. Bart Purcell

Hello  is there a number where I can reach you concerning strategic business matter I'm a hobbyist myself and recently decided to merge my "job" with my aquaria hobby. I believe I have something amazing and needed to the mid-high end hobbyist and it is not mutually exclusive to the aquaria hobbyist' realm.  please reply or simply call me at (818)982-XXXX I'm in los Angeles. <Mmm, no desire to chat over the phone. You're welcome to e-chat in confidence however with us here. Bob Fenner>

Plug GFCI 3/22/04  Dear Sir, We are Yueqing Dongya Electric Switch Factory. we can supply GFCI, Here are brief introduction of our company: Our are a special manufacture in LBD type GFCI (Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter) and Mini Hair Drier. Our products are widely used in outdoor Receptacles, bathroom receptacle Circuits, Garage wall outlets, kitchen receptacles and all receptacle in crawl spaces and unfinished basements. We have gained CCC certificate for China market and CE for Europe markets. And UL is being applied now. If you find any interest, please don't hesitate to contact me. Your early reply will be highly appreciated.   Best regards! Address: Area, Bai Baixiang Wenzhou ZheJiang China Zip:     325603 Tel:     86-577-62750688 Contact: Tony Shen wy75ipq@mail.hz.zj.cn http://www.cn-dongya.com <I will post your note on WetWebMedia.com in the hopes a distributor or manufacturer will find you. Bob Fenner>

Aquarium Canopy Hi...I am selling my home in which I have a 55 gallon aquarium covered with a decorative custom canopy I designed and built myself...problem is... most of the  prospective buyers have complimented my aquarium more than my home...not a real problem per say, but it has lead me to think that there may be a market for my canopy...any suggestions on how to market it? Thank you. <Yes. The best (simplest, least-expensive, more likely to get you results) is to place an ad in the best of the hobby zines (Freshwater and Marine Aquarium) in their classifieds... and sell the plans for such... ALONG WITH having an internet site to refer folks to examples/photos of the finished product. Bob Fenner>

Buy acrylic off cuts at good price 1/29/04 Dear Sir <Howdy. Gung hay fat choy!> We are the leading recycling products importer from China. We learned you produce acrylic sheets or acrylic products, so we wish to know if you can supply acrylic off cuts, such as acrylic scraps, strips or crosslinked. We would like to buy from your side at good price and big quantity regularly if you can supply. Pls kindly let us know ASAP., thank you  very much. Best regards Ale Xiao e-mail recycleimport@yahoo.com.cn China Recycle Import <We don't do any fabrication, but I will post your note and email on WetWebMedia.com in hopes other folks will find you. Bob Fenner>

Refugium builder required 12/16/03 Hello Bob and the ever growing email pioneers , I am looking for a company or individual that can build a sump/refugium that I designed . I live in the North East , RI/ Mass , Please let me know if you can help . Richard <Cheers Richard. I believe we can help you here. Do seek the advice of your local (and excellent!) reef club, the Boston Reefers. They have a website and forum on Reef Central. I am certain they can advise you of your local options. They are also the host of next years national marine conference to be held in Boston in September. Outstanding... looking forward to it. Anthony>  

Re: Refugium builder required Hello Bob and Anthony , I am also interested in patenting this refugium and then marketing this item . Seeing this is my first attempt at this I have no idea where to start . I did some research and found a plastics company that is interested in providing material and they also have a company that could mass produce . Knowing somewhat about Bob's history I have the felling he has been through this before with other products. Hopefully he can be a wealth of information . I will also need a place to sell these items and I can not think of a better home than WWM . <Me neither... do try making and running a "demo" unit... once you have most all the bugs out function-wise, have developed ideas on how to mass-produce (jigs, frame boxes...), make a few and set them up at local fish stores... see what the public thinks, hopefully will pay... and we'll be talking. I would contact the Chuas at All Seas re pumps for your units... re-sale possibilities... do NOT give anyone exclusives in space or time... Bob Fenner>                      Looking forward to your response, Richard

Re: Refugium builder required Thanks for the quick response Bob . I am having difficulty with the last part of your message , Chuas at all seas, What is it and where can I find it . Also, patent first or build demo first ? Thanks Rich <Edwin and Ted Chua own/run All Seas in Los Angeles... a large wholesale distributor of marine livestock and drygoods... they can very likely both supply you with fluid-moving pumps for your refugiums and may well help you sell your units. They could be powerful allies. Bob Fenner>

Ion exchange resins for water treatment (more industry) and water treatment equipments Dear Sirs, We have come to know the name of your corporation and have the pleasure of writing this letter to you in the hope of establishing business relations with us. Our company is mainly engaged in researching, developing and producing of ion exchange resins. Its products are widely used in power industry, petroleum refining, chemical industry, electro industry, metallurgical industry, pharmaceutical industry and sugar industry, etc. The total producing capacity of ion exchange resins is up to 13000 tons per year. Relying on continuous development of new products, our company has become the biggest and professional manufacturer of ion exchange resins in P.R. China. Since 1995, the company has been keeping the titles of the highest output and the highest sale income in ion exchange resins industry in China. Our company has got the approval of international Quality System ISO9001 and entitled the right to expert its products directly. Meanwhile, our company makes various kinds of ion exchange columns, and water treatment equipment. It also supplies engineering design, engineering consulting service, equipment installation and debug. Now, ion exchange resins of our company have occupied 40% share of the Chinese market. At the same time, the products have been sold to USA, UK, Japan, Thailand, Taiwan, Australia, Iran, Pakistan, South Korea and India, etc. Please contact us if you are interested in our manufactures, and we will send you the details of our products by E-mail. We will enter into business relations with your firm on the basis of equality and mutual benefit. We trust that through our mutual cooperation, we shall be able to have a good future in business. We look forward to your early reply with much interest. Our information: Tel: 86-510-6336655 Fax: 86-510-6336655 Http:// www.suqing.com Yours sincerely Suqing Water Treatment Engineering Group Co., Ltd Shen Xiaojuan <I will post your message on our site (WetWebMedia.com) in the hopes others will contact you who have interest in your products. Bob Fenner>

Inquiry Information. Looking for acrylic sheets suppliers. Dear Sir We are the leading importer of acrylic sheets from China. We import high quality acrylic sheets in large quantity every year. Now we are looking for new suppliers and if you specialize in this line pls reply us and send us your reasonable prices based on FOB. Thank you. Best regards Sealand Shen Company Name  HENGXING INDUSTRY&TRADING CO., LTD.   Address  #401 - 403, 4/FL., Bayi Office Building, NO.151, Daweier Rd, Jinan, Shandong, China    Zip  250001    Region/Country  China   Phone Number  +86-531-2903972   Fax Number  +86-531-2903962   <Will post on WetWebMedia.com in hopes such suppliers will find you. Bob Fenner>

A new marine filtration manufacturer! My name is Jeremy Redmond, I was manager of Marine Showcase in Denver...you generously spoke at the shop not so long ago.  It was certainly a pleasure to meet you then and I appreciate this opportunity to share in your knowledge and contacts.   <Yes Jeremy, a pleasure to meet you> You may remember the unique black acrylic refugiums that I was building there...we spoke briefly about them before we headed out for Chinese.  I have since left my position there and am in the late business planning/early funding stage of my own company. RedmondReef Filters Inc. will be manufacturing an improved version of these refugia (which include my patent pending bubble system, that permits free plankton flow w/o bubbles). <Very nice units>   We are also offering a Berlin/Wet Dry system with several unique and flexible innovations.  All of these filters are very high end and are poised to satisfy the custom/high end market in a new and exciting way. If I could, I would like to spell out a couple questions that you may answer at your convenience. 1) I have spent an extraordinary amount of time and resources (SBA, Chamber of Commerce, Library, APPMA etc..) trying to establish how many custom tanks/high end tanks ($5K set ups or greater) are sold each year and what trends accompany those numbers.  Any numbers you've heard or sources I've missed would be greatly appreciated. <Can only render a guess... with confidence limits, mainly based on personal experience (19 years of doing such fabrications and installs, though finished a dozen years back) and some knowledge of how large the service end of our industry is, and proprietary information on how many custom tanks are made by such outfits as Tenecor, S.D. Plastics, Lee-Mar... I would say likely 5,000 or so in even numbers. How many would make use of your products, given they could become aware of them, is even harder to say> 2) I plan to make a personal sales visit to the top 5 or 6 specialty shops in each of the following states: Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, Utah and of course Colorado.  Besides my local market, I do not have a "hot-list" of the shops that would reach these high end consumers.  Can you make any recommendations of shops "not to miss" in these markets and perhaps a contact there (if you feel comfortable doing so).  I would use these contacts to make an appointment to visit with them personally and deliver a unit for sale on consignment in their shops. <... Some stores (exceedingly few) sell such high end gear (our retail stores sold none of our custom filtration or designer aquariums... the same customer base rarely, if ever "went into fish stores". Instead, do develop and implement a marketing program to reach the larger service companies (you can find them most easily by perusing the "Yellow Pages" of the various larger towns... These folks also "don't go into" (to buy at least) the retail stores (unless they own them), but do purchase and place almost all such gear as you hope to sell. A "flyer" stating benefits, applications, costs, a graphic/pic... and a follow-up phone call or three, four, to establish your veracity. Do you have a website yet? I would get one going schnell. To refer folks to, place the previous information, post testimonials, pix of installs... have a way for folks to find and get to know you.> 3) Our filters will wildly raise the bar on consumer expectations of what a filter can be.  We are incorporating budget considerations to highlight our revolutionary designs at one trade show per year.  If you were launching a line like this, which shows would you focus on? <Only the biggest and best. The Backer "Christmas Show", the WWPSA west coast show... if you can afford it, the PIDA and APPMA shows... and the most important, the Interzoo, next May in Germany> 4) Any words of sage advice or pivotal contacts you would be willing to part with would be priceless. <Will have to think about this a bit... are you going to be fabricating, selling "complete units", with the tanks, lighting... in one package? My real "words of advice" are to be guarded against the twin nemeses of self-employment/small business: undercapitalization and poor management... Glad to hear you're working on your business and marketing plans at this stage... No better way to gain a grasp on "what it's going to take" to successfully launch your enterprise. Identify your customer is another very good idea. In a few months to years you'll agree that it was not the retailers. Maybe one hundred of them in all the U.S. might sell your units, of these, perhaps ten percent will carry them... you need folks who are pro-active to press their sales, application (the service end), but "reaching" them takes (sigh) a few years to infinity. Hone your skills of what you want to tell them and the "end-user" (if interested) by making your website... consider placing some small ads in FAMA and TFH...> Thank you so much for your time...a quick browse of the Wetweb site tells me that you answer a great many questions, you are clearly a busy man. Best Regards Jeremy Redmond RedmondReef Filters Inc 303.910.4079 RedmondReef@yahoo.com <As we all are. Bob Fenner>

Aquarium Journals (product) Hi Mr. Fenner,      First off, I would like to thank you for providing such great information on your site and in your book "The Conscientious Marine Aquarist".  I have used both as my main references since beginning as an aquarist in 2001, and have been blessed with no major problems by utilizing your advice.  This brings me to the reason I am writing to you.        I have started my own company called Aquarium Journals, my product is a log book that allows marine and reef aquarists to log every aspect of their tank's growth and maintenance in a refillable, all inclusive system. <Yes, have visited your site, and you/your company are sponsors, advertisers of/on WWM> I am advertising on your site and some others.      I have started to market my log book to local fish stores in the SF Bay Area, the LA area, San Diego, and Boston...I thought I could keep my margin high by doing it this way but  have found that it is not going to work.   <Very hard to become established in our interest... even with "winner" products> Everyone seems to love it but are not willing to try...had the best luck so far in San Diego.      I thought I had done my homework and thought of the best plan but am very new to this business and wondered if I could set up a meeting with you to discuss my marketing plans.  I will gladly pay you for your time if necessary, and will travel to San Diego so we can meet.  I don't want to give you too many details here if we are to meet but if you need any other information, please let me know.  Thank you so much for your time.      <I will gladly help you, gratis. You're welcome to visit here (SD) or call, write... all. Please make it known how you would like to proceed. Bob Fenner> Sincerely, Lisa Harwood Aquarium Journals lisajean1969@msn.com (415)440-3318

Aquarium manufacturing Bob, Hope you are doing well, its been awhile since I've wrote in to you guys :) I have been thinking of manufacturing aquariums.  I would like to go glass and acrylic, and compete with the likes of Oceanic and All-Glass.  They are big though and have been around for ages!! <Yes... but have seen "regional" custom makers of tanks arise and prosper over the years...>   I do however think I can improve on the basic design of reef ready aquariums.   My questions is, do you think the industry has room? <Yes> I have really no experience with glass working or acrylic working, but plan to build a few small tanks for sump / refugium. <Good plan to work on these designs, sell some to hone...> I did some pricing on glass working tools, and they are quite expensive, used polishers and cutters run $250,000....USED !!!! <... Do go with simple hand tools for now>   I still need to figure out a lot of things, cost of materials etc, I'm sure there's a reason for the 'standard' size aquariums out there due to glass use, and getting the most for your materials. <Yes, the most yield per sheet of glass or acrylic, historical legacy, fit for others gear...> Based on that my tanks may have to be their own sizes and dimensions, similar to what DAS did with their measurements. Do you think there is room in the industry to be successful on a large scale? <Define "large"... presently, with the U.S. government overspending, borrowing, ticking off much of the "commercially developed" nations of the world, our economy and relative worth of currency is headed south... and therefore a restriction in "hobby spending"... with the current vested interests holding sway. However, by the time you can/may gear up to be a major player (a few to several years) there might well be such an opening. You need to think, investigate deeply re what you want to do, what current circumstances will likely allow... and DEVELOP a niche market for now... for what will/can become your full line later. Much to consider here... but try to focus on a single idea... perhaps refugium/sumps of a given design, make them/it in one basic size... try taking them around to LFS' in your area, the hobby clubs, place an ad or three in the hobby 'zines... Before trying to make  larger scale business, marketing plans, leasing space, borrowing monies...>   How do you feel on non-standard sized tanks, and the most important question....where would I start in finding out this stuff myself :) <The very best would be to go and work for what will be your competitors.... in any, all capacities. Other useful knowledge, insights can be gained by working in glass, acrylic fabrication businesses, the retail pet-fish trade... attending our industry's regional and international trade shows... taking course-work in business classes. Good at this point to jot down ideas, plans for products, try your hand at cutting material (on a table saw with special blade for sheet acrylic)... put together some samples and try hawking... Bob Fenner> Thanks again! Mark

Re: Aquarium manufacturing Thanks for the fast reply.   For obvious reasons I don't want to go into a lot of detail on design, and not to mention its not finalized.  The overall goal of my business would be to build/sell aquariums that can actually flow the amount of water a lot of hobbyists want to flow. <Yes. There are serious design/engineering flaws in all manufacturers' "reef-ready" systems I have seen>   Very good points about the economy, which was also one of my concerns.  It would be quite a bit of work I think to build tanks and pieces, and I'd hate to invest the money/time into something that might not fair so well.   I have been building an aquarium stand for some time now, due to time restraints.  It seems like it would be hard to be profitable doing it in spare time. <Mmm, yes... a principal question at this juncture is "compared with other money-making possibilities, how much is it worth to you to otherwise involve yourself with this project"? The affective domain (your feelings... versus if you will your cognition re making money) is important to ponder... and test out by way of aforementioned "practice" in making a few, trying to sell, deliver, collect on... your designs>   I guess designing a prototype and seeing if the design works on a small like 30 gallon tank would be a good start, once I have that I could go to patenting the design and whatnot? <Yes, definitely>   I'd hate to produce a few small tanks, only to see a bigger corporation like the idea and do it themselves. <Very unlikely to happen... most all such "ideas" I've found are not practically patentable... More, much more to be gained by simply, directly going forward, building, selling your work... and maintaining a positive perspective, innovating... and not worrying, even wondering what "the competition" might do.>   Thanks for the input, I will contact you more regarding this in the future, perhaps a small tank out of 1/4" acrylic from home depot would be a good start for something small, for my first attempt lol. Mark <Be laughing, building. Bob Fenner>

Re: Aquarium manufacture Hello again crew, Not really a question but noticed today on FAQ's that someone was inquiring about starting an aquarium business.  I too have that desire and wondered if you could pass along my e-mail address to "Mark".  I just built my first 100 gallon acrylic with rounded corners and it doesn't leak so I would like to share experiences.,. No need to post this, and thanks for all your help. <Mike, still no word from this gentleman. Will continue to hold on to your msg. Bob Fenner>

Book Writing, Selling, Distributing... in the pet-fish interest Hi Bob, <Hey Duane> Some time ago I sent you a list of "how to" questions...see below. However, the specific exchange I am most interested in is as follows: "5. I would love to get my manuals actually published. My aquarium maintenance guide will actually be well over 120 pages once these last updates are made and that is without pictures so when I am done with a version I really am pleased with (I never seem to be satisfied) it will be a pretty good start. So, how do I do it? Who should I contact and do you have to be a PhD to be considered for anything? <No need for a doctorate... I will circulate your note about here... We are actually a couple of small publishing interests (WWM is a media co. really, and Anthony Calfo has ReadingTrees.com). Am sure we can help you in myriad ways... at the very least with our opinions, experiences of "how we've done what we've done"... if not production, sales and distribution help> Thanks so much for the help and I hope to hire you to do more work for me in the future...maybe a forward to my guide. :) <I would be honored. Bob Fenner>" I am writing more articles (specifically the use of barley straw to control algae and it's potential use in home aquaria) but am willing and open to any specific help I can receive regarding how you and your associates have successfully written "real" books, as well as published, marketed and distributed them. I have several small manuals that I currently self-publish and sell on the net. It does fairly well and I always have plans for future improvements but I am ready to dedicate my time and efforts more seriously to this endeavor (if that is even possible) and can think of know one else better qualified than you and your group to ask. Please...any help you can provide in any form would be greatly appreciated. Thanks again and I eagerly await your response. Duane Clark AquaServe Aquarium Publications www.aquaserve.com www.eFishTank.com www.fishbizforums.com <Much to say here... and am wondering how best to "say it"... Would be great if you could somehow "meet up" with a number of us (WWM) and chat this field over. To try and state some important matters here. THE most important element in the whole equation of successful publishing IS the text (along with graphics, layout...), BUT w/o good production values and a working plan (implemented) to sell and distribute the work it might never have been written... We can help you on all these counts... with editing, getting word out that you have book/s for sale... A further note re how to generate interest, future sales... do consider serializing some of the pieces, as articles for the hobby magazine press... Going back here, what areas of the whole process are you seeking input on? Bob Fenner>

Re: Mark Weiss Products Hi Bob, Thanks for your opinion on skimmer usage.  It gives us a better stance on how much emphasis we want to put on this new skimmer design.    <No worries> Do you know much about the public's perception on Mark Weiss products?  It seems that in reaction to our product coming out, he has developed and will be marketing a device very similar.  We had no idea if this was fact or fiction until recently, but it is true. <The products are widely regarded as garbage... the man as a charlatan> There has been mixed public opinions on the quality of Mark Weiss' products however, what is your opinion.  I guess my biggest fear is that he can further drive the perception of using Magnetic Fields as water treatment further into the trenches of hocus pocus.    <You have reason to be guarded... I tried to hint to as much on meeting you in TX> By the way we have found some interesting research on the solvent shell bond strengths between H+ and Cl- in salt water.  It seems that the bond strength that neutralizes Cl- is very weak compared to H+ bonding binding H20 molecule networks.  This helps us understand some of the sterilization effects that we have achieved with our product.  Much more research needs to be done, but is good news none the less and very motivating.    <Okay> As well, we recently got a great product review from Bob Goeman's.  Thanks very much, I hope you have a great holiday if I don't talk to you before then. <Umm, read Bob's two reviews of Weiss in FAMA last year... the third got pulled... "light being more focused", "sparks coming from opening bottles"... The sorts of stmt.s one reads as you pass through check stands in supermarkets... I can only imagine Bob and Mark drinking to excess, making up the most bizarre, incredible ideas... My real opinion, don't associate with Mark.W... it will taint you, your enterprise. Ask around. Bob Fenner> Regards, Ken Fung   

ECO update Bob, thank you very much for your quick reply, you must sleep with your laptop beside you.  <I am the laptop> In regards to your offer to be introduced to some etailers, I would like to take you up on that in a couple weeks, but right now we are putting the final touches on our business plan. <Is there a separate marketing plan?> Fortunately these days no one takes you seriously without a good one. <They shouldn't... put yourself in others places... Would you lend your money for instance to folks who hadn't done this "due diligence"? Me neither> We are very fortunate to have you been acting as or mentor over this time.  <I am pleased to assist you> Your input has been invaluable and has given us much insight in this industry, but enough buttering you up. I would like to ask you in all seriousness if you would like to be honorary member of our advisory board? <An honor to serve... Call/label me as you'd like... I am your friend, industry associate> But before you answer I think it would be only fair to tell you what and who you be getting yourself into. We have not really given you a background on ourselves and I would like to give you a brief background on the members of our team. 1) Phoebe Fung, M.B.A Queens Universtiy - Director of Operations. She's a corporate business planner with several years experience in implementing management projects. 2) Mikael Sears, M.B.A, C.F.P, Queens University - Chief Financial Officer. He's an assistant vice-president of sales for the HSBC Bank and hosts planning for marketing plans. 3) Corrine Wilkinson - Director of Marketing M.B.A. , E-Business Program , Bachelor of Commerce Degree. She's focused on development and implementation of strategic operational marketing projects. 4) Carl Denzer B.Com - Director of Product Development/President. Owned and operated an accounting consulting company. 5) Myself Ken Fung, BSc. - Director of Sales and Sales and Service. Currently employed with IBM. As well we have recently signed on Sam Gamble as a member of our product development team. We are excited, confident, and determined in our pursuits and <And? Bob F>

ECO update Hi Bob, It has been a long time since Carl and I have last communicated with you, sorry about that. Since we last spoken, we were in progress of finalizing our business plan. Well it was a harder process than we anticipated, <Almost always is... but most everything seems difficult at first> with each question we answered ten more seemed to pop up, but that is to be anticipated when you are trying to be as analytical or anal, take your pick.  <Good to be a bit of both... in biz and life> We are nearing a point of satisfaction with our strategic planning, however there are a couple of questions I was wondering you could get your feedback on? <Okay> I apologize ahead of time for being so direct in my asking. <Best route with me> 1) With your experience with local vendors, do you know if most small vendors get their products direct from a manufacturer? <Most not... great to work your way up to being an OEM type... but only if/when/where "it makes sense"... My strongest advice: figure out your net margin is for EVERY component, operation... and set a MINIMUM pass through profit for each... trust me here... in the not-so long haul you will find the validity, veracity of this scheme... as you can/do modify suppliers, orders of assembly, processing... you will still be overall profitable... If some aspect should (they will) increase in real cost/diminished gross and net margin... you will be able to see how/if (hopefully) you can mediate in some other area to make up the overall difference... or if you must need change pricing...> 2) Do you know is there are some sales reps that represent multiple manufacturers product(s)? <Yes... but... this is a very long explanation in reality... Better to "do yourself" for now... to learn, conserve your wits, capital... Look to partnering in time and space with some of the livestock wholesalers (yes, like Quality Marine, All Seas...) and etailers (like Custom Aquatic, Aquatic Depot...). This is the best route for you for the next few years. I will contact these folks for/with you if you'd like> 3) Do most major distributors carry inventory in their own warehouses? <Mmm, to varying extents yes... but generally not much... a few weeks inventory maybe for most... some just order and send on the fly... Don't count, rely or even seek to have folks hold much... too much money tied up for you and them... and dangers of folks faltering...> 4) Of the major pet supple chains (ex. PetCo, PetSmart, etc.) which store do you think would most likely want to carry ECO (given we have a strong business plan and marketing platform)? In other words which one would you suggest we target? <Neither... these are not your market... the TWP by Aquarium Pharmaceuticals is their customer... unless you have something in this price range, I would not bother with the mass-merchandisers at all. Think deeply on this my friends... I know wherein I speak> 5) What is your view point on a typical hobbyist's buying decision? <There are "market segments" in our interest/industry as most others... Price, quality, other appeals/considerations... a good majority buy on price... others (maybe a handful of %) on perception of quality... You must... aim for... a long term (a few years) approach to "convincing the consumer" of intrinsic value in your products... really... and once you "crack" the "high end" (like the folks who are the hobby groups, clubs, BB's moderators/regulars... they will sell your line... You cannot hope to do so, even with "all the money" you can borrow... The market exists only to some extent presently... you must get key people to use, endorse (at least speak up, write about) your line, edge your way (trade show, hobby get-togethers, magazine articles (not ads)...) into the consciousness of your target consumers...> I really appreciate your views on these questions. I have done most of my market research on these questions, but I would like to know if my research lines up with popular consensus. Thanks once again your help has been invaluable. <A pleasure. Bob Fenner> Regards, Ken Fung

Aquarium furniture Hello, I'm Enrique from the Philippines, Cebu to be exact. Cebu is the furniture capital of the Philippines. <Yes, I have been there... to Lapu Lapu City, down to Bohol Island and about, diving, visiting with friends in the shell business...> I would like to state my question. Is there any way I could supply aquarium furniture? Stand and canopy made of wood, wrought iron, rattan.. etc... I am currently making high-end furniture hardware (brass handles, knobs and have a work force of about 50pax) my factory is situated on a 2 hectare land and am very interested into going into producing furniture and would like to start with aquarium furniture. Have a 70 gallon marine fish only tank at the office. I have browsed through your FAQ on aquatics business and haven't seen anything about this. Where should I start and who should I contact? Can you help me? Where should I start? Email me at this address. Thanks, Enrique <If it is okay to use the email address you've sent this message with, I will post your request and ask that others respond directly to you... Otherwise, I STRONGLY recommend you attend the Aquarama show in Singapore in May: http://www.aquarama.com.sg/exhib.html to make important contacts in the trade, show pictures of your work... This will give you tremendous insights into what the market is looking for, will pay, and who you can do business with... There are "Buyer's Guides" in our trade, in a few languages... but using them, sending letters, trying to make contact will take quite a while (a few years) to get established... hence, I would make a concerted effort to make a few example pieces, photograph them and attend/exhibit at the international shows. I hope to meet you there. Bob Fenner>

Re: aquarium furniture Posting my email address would be alright.. I still have to do a lot with how to design the stand... if you can help me or direct me to a webpage where I can see a basic design on the stand (where to put holes, minimum area for the sump, standard tanks sizes, where to put holes for the plumbing, etc..) I will start with making my own stand I still have to research on how o put thing/system within the stand. I would be glad if you can help me.. <I would read thoroughly through "Oz' Reef": http://www.ozreef.org/> I'm planning to put 1 overflow (enough for a 100gallon?) found here: http://saltaquarium.about.com/gi/dynamic/offsite.htm?site=http%3A%2F%2Fw ww.rl180reef.com%2Fframes.htm <Should be okay, two would be better... one at either end> Sump: http://www.geocities.com/stylatin/180.htm Do I need W/D filter? How many gallons sump do I need? <Bigger the better... twenty percent of the system volume is a good rule of thumb> Live rock & Sand: Can I get it from the reefs here? Found a DIY sand & Rock from ABOUT.com, will this be okay? <You can collect your own, of course.> Protein skimmer, I have two, a counter current (for my FO tank) and a venturi type. w/ Rio 1100 submersible (haven't tested this yet).. <Do test it> Lights, would like to start w/ 2 50/50, and 2 actinics (that's what's available here) <Okay for low-light organisms, fish only...> I would like to know if this can be successful? Maybe I should just stick with fish only tank :(.. or maybe I should acquire more experience? <Yes to the last... start slow, easy> Have only been to Singapore twice and would love to go there for a show if I can find time to away from the factory. I would like to see a show like this as I am new to the hobby and I know I will love it a lot... the problem is there are only countable (ten fingers) that have been introduced to this hobby here. There is no single pet shop here that has full knowledge who can help us set-up even in a fish only tank. I got my clown trigger from a fisherman from Lapu Lapu. He is about 5 inches already. He is also with a lion about 4".. I would like to go into a reef aquarium.. I'm planning to DIY hood, sump, 100galon tank, chiller, etc.. as there is no pet shop here that has these things. I have to try manila though. Anyway, I'm reading a lot from the internet and books also. I have been planning for the last 2 months and have some drawings already. I'm not in a hurry though. I have to see if the resources I have here are enough. Was thinking though to buy some things from abroad, but some items are heavy and bulky and oversized to be put in the plane so I would like to start with what I have here. <Good idea> I am looking for your book (Conscientious) over here in Cebu and cannot find it... well maybe I have to search more.. or maybe in manila... I have two books on starting a reef: Marine Reef Aquarium Handbook by Dr. Robert Goldstein, getting into mini-reefs, by Jim Fatherree.. <Good works... and yes to possibly ordering the book from Amazon.com?> Aside from the business, I would like to start a mini reef also. Will I be able to do this, with the limited support fro here? Any help from you would be a big help. Thank you. <Do keep studying, reading through WetWebMedia.com... we have folks that write in from the Philippines... maybe you can find a way to meet up with them. Bob Fenner> Enrique Suarez Arts Metal Technology Corp. Cebu City Philippines 6000 metaltech@info.com.ph

Re: Invention Bob, I wanted to thank you for taking the time to chat with me yesterday. I can't believe the things and people you have stored in your head :-). <Don't ask me about how to work on cars, or sports, or women... for sure!> I think your insight gave me some great ideas on how to do this without sticking my $10k out on the roulette table and I appreciate that. If you are ever in the Bay Area PLEASE look me up and I'll buy you that beer(s)!! Here's my contact info: <Great! A pleasure my friend. Your success is mine as well. Bob Fenner> Wesley Sonner (408) 379-XXXX home Wesley@XXXX.com Thanks again and see you in the soup! <Indeed!> Wes

Invention Idea II Sunday would be fine for me as would email from the others in the group. I value all of your input greatly. <Go ahead and CC me at StevePro@WetWebMedia.com I will not save my response for the daily page, so to protect your invention. -Steven Pro> Let me know how we might connect on Sunday if you have the time. And thank you again. Wes

Invention Idea It's me again....I'm in an email mood today...must be the Zoloft :-D. I have an invention for the aquarium industry and I'd sure like to run it by you guys to see if you think there is any merit in it. I've got it prototyped and am ready to push the button to have the thing produced in small quantities. Would you be interested in giving me some input before I drop a boat load of money? <Glad to help> If so, is there any way we can chat off-line? I can't expose it to the world JUST yet....please let me know. I'm not looking for endorsements or anything committal I just want a grounding and reality check from people I trust.  -Wesley Sonner <I do understand... time is tight today (writing up a pitch, article for presentation to a grp. tomorrow night...). Can e- or otherwise chat on Sunday, or maybe Steve, Anthony have time. Will cc them here. Bob Fenner>

Pix 24" Revolution Hi Bob, Are you going to the PIDA show? I plan on taking the 24" diameter Aquatic Revolution in the picture. I think I will have it in ORA's booth. Definitely not a money shot. <Very nice. Say hello to Jeff for me. Will be in Australia diving. Bob F> Regards, Mitch

Re: Aquarium manufacture Bob, Thanks a lot for your reply. I am looking at costs and likely prices here and will know more in a month or so. If you are in Brisbane during your visit to Australia, let me know. <Real good. Yes, am in Brisbane on 3/12 (just enroute from US to Gladstone), then 4/4 (2:35 ETA) overnight on out 4/5 in the AM... Bob F> Mike Sweet

Aquarium manufacture Bob,  I live in Australia now and I noticed that all the aquariums for sale here are glass. I am wondering how hard it would be to set up a small facility to manufacture acrylic aquariums.  <Not hard. A few thousands of dollars on the low end to a few tens of thousands for more serious investment, production> Do you know much about the manufacture of aquariums or do you know anyone that I could contact by e-mail who might know?  <We used to fabricate up to two inch thick acrylic tanks. Have several friends in the trade who do this> I need information on how the front piece is bent, jigs and fixtures for manufacture, on exactly the type of plastic used (do they use regular acrylic or is it coated to be scratch resistant?), <Not coated... some "brands", makes are a bit more scratch resistant, none totally> the thickness of plastic for various sized aquariums etc.. Do you think it would be possible to set up a manufacturing facility?  <Possible, sure> I think that it would be too expensive to import the tanks because they take up so much space, and the Australian dollar is very low so anything from the USA is too expensive.  <I do understand this. We're headed that way for a few weeks next month. Land, food, diving... a bargain>> I like the pictures that you send out every day. <Ah, am glad to hear>  Good luck, Mike Sweet <Mike, a very good idea for you to investigate, invest your time if serious at this point. Here on the West coast of the U.S. or the U.K... (where friends are who will help), to learn first-hand what is involved. Let us keep talking this over. Bob Fenner>

Vietnam - Hanoi Trade and Technology Transferring Company <Thank you for your contact. Will send your kind offer of assistance on to friends in the pet-fish industry who might engage you. Bob Fenner, WetWebMedia.com> DEAR SIR \ MADAM We are an international trader, we export and import commodities in Hanoi, the capital of Vietnam. We know your address on Internet, we would like to know the detail information of the commodities you need, we can supply all Vietnamese products or the commodities from the third country with competitive price, also could you inform us the products which you export? It is easy for us whenever we have requirements that correspond with your company. Looking forward to hearing you Wishes for further co-operation Best regards, President General Director- Engineer Mr. Le Khac Triet contact us: Hanoi Trade and Technology Transferring Company ( Hatetra co .,Ltd ) Address: Kiosk No10 Hom market, Hue street, Hanoi Vietnam. Tel: 00-84-4-9433606 / 8226998 Fax: 00-84-4-8226998 Email: hatetra.co@fpt.vn / hatetra2@fpt.vn / hatetra3@hn.vnn.vn

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