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· Reef Overlord
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489 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
:wavey: Hi guys, I'm back. After several years out of the hobby, I am jumping back in. In the past, I've had a 140T, 24g Nano, and a 55 standard. All of which were less than spectacular due to poor planning and getting in a hurry.:bawling: That being said, It's time to do this the right way.

My idea is to put a Marineland 220XH in the wall between my living room and garage. The main reason is to keep all the water out of the house in the event of a catastrophe. This should also eliminate pump noise and many of the random smells that are associated with SW. In the garage, I'm going to wall off an area approx 6'x10' to house the tank and the rest of the equipment. Although humidity is not much of an issue here in Lubbock, it will be vented outside the house using a bathroom style fan. It gets pretty hot and cold here, so some sort of thermal control is necessary. Not sure if I want to add another line to my HVAC system, or if I want to use a "window unit" to handle that. Maybe you guys can chime in on this. Power will come from a pair of separate 20A lines from my breaker box...I would think that 2 would be plenty. I already have a cold water line running to my RODI, so a small laundry sink is on the list...just have to figure out where the closest drain is. Probably in the laundry room. Anyway, the basic plan goes like this:
1. Gather all necessary supplies to set this up as a FOWLR, like the skimmer, return, circulation, sump, etc. Cook the dry rock with a little LR for diversity and to minimize any algae issues.
2. Order tank last
3. Create the hole for the tank into the living room, and wall off the fish room.
4. Have LFS deliver the tank to my stand.
5. Setup for FOWLR.

I want to keep this as FOWLR for 6 month to a year to give the tank time to settle down and mature before adding corals. Sound like a plan?

FOWLR Equipment list

Marineland 220XH (72x24x30) with center overflows instead of the corner overflows. Modded Beananimal style.
DIY sump 36x24x24
SRO 3000int skimmer
I haven't decided on a return pump yet
Thinking about using 4 Koralia Magnum 6s or 8s for the main circulation.
I already have a 4' 2 bulb flourescent fixture to light the tank at first, but will be upgrading to a pair of Radium 20ks in Lumenbrite 3 reflectors and Vertex 250W ballasts. I would think that the pair would be sufficient for most corals when I make the switch to reef, or should I do a trio of 250s? I am planning 2-3 tall rock islands and would like a couple of nice monti caps and few other SPS. I want it kinda sparse so that it has a lot of room to grow in. Maybe a couple of derasa clams and some lps and zoas.

Anyway, this is just the planning stage, I probably won't purchase anything until after Christmas, so I've got plenty of time. Until Christmas, I will be moving my RODI in the garage and running power and some plumbing. Here is a (badly) edited pic of my living room with a nice tank i found on another forum that is similar in size to the one I'm planning.

Ideas? Comments? Helpful Advice?
 

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· Lost At Sea
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1,513 Posts
Awsome plan! Can't wait to follow the progress. As for circulation pumps have you considered 1 or 2 Ecotech MP40's? Those suckers can move an incredible amount of water. Looking at some demo's you may just need one, although a second for backup would be good. While a little pricey, will definitely cut down on some of the electricity cost as you aren't running 4 pumps.
 

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393 Posts
ya and I have to replace mine about every month because they break constantly..

also the looks nice :D
I've had 3 since getting into the hobby 2 years ago and love them. I'm not saying its as good as the vortech MP's but for the price I'd buy em every time! I've not had the first problem and the new evolution series is able to be used with timers.

What kind of issues you having Nate?
 

· Reef Overlord
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489 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)
I had my 1st gen Koralias on a timer with out any issues...I'm actually looking at using 4 of the Magnum 6's or 6 Evo 1400s all mounted to the right side of the tank. 3 will shoot down the front glass to the left and 3 will shoot down the back glass. I'm planning to run them in 40 minute sets with 10 mins of overlap. So for 30 min, the front set will run and get the tank circulating in a clockwise manner, then for 10 minutes, the back set will turn on too creating a bit of turbulence, then the fronts will turn off and the flow will reverse. The actual timing will have to be tweaked since I've never had a tank this big, but I shouldn't be too far off. Really, any ph can do this, but I have had pretty good experiences in the past. I could step up to the Tunze 6065, but I would have to hear a pretty good argument against the korallias. I am interested in Nate's experience.
 

· Reef Overlord
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489 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
I had started a thread in the DIY section for cutting 1/2 glass for a DIY sump, but since I also started this build thread I thought I would move it over here. We last left off with me waiting on the glass shop to get back to me with a price to cut some 1/2" glass after some sound advice not to cut it myself. I tried to listen to that good advice, but the other voices in my head were telling me different.

Well...haven't heard back from the glass shop yet, but I did find this sweet video on youtube where this guy was cutting some thick glass. Yes it was in a circle, but he still used a glass cutting wheel, so I thought that his idea would work in a straight line. Anyway, I gave it a shot tonight on a scrap piece of glass, and was pretty pleased with the result. The edge was a little rough, but a quick clean up with the dremel made for an acceptable result. Now, I'm not saying the edge was like a nice factory edge, but it is straight, flat, and can be secured with sillycone for a homemade sump that no one will ever see, except for when I post some pics on here...lol:rotflmao:
 

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I've had 3 since getting into the hobby 2 years ago and love them. I'm not saying its as good as the vortech MP's but for the price I'd buy em every time! I've not had the first problem and the new evolution series is able to be used with timers.

What kind of issues you having Nate?
I got the new Evolution Pumps, mine is the 750, and its only 5 months old and I had to replace the front grills 4 times in the first 3 months and after those I just left them running broken. I called hydor and before I finished explaining what was broke one them, they told me that always happens and then asked for my address to ship me new ones... never had to pay, but just got lazy having to e-mail them each time they broke, the first two broke in the first 3 weeks..
 

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I got the new Evolution Pumps, mine is the 750, and its only 5 months old and I had to replace the front grills 4 times in the first 3 months and after those I just left them running broken. I called hydor and before I finished explaining what was broke one them, they told me that always happens and then asked for my address to ship me new ones... never had to pay, but just got lazy having to e-mail them each time they broke, the first two broke in the first 3 weeks..
Did they break takn em apart for cleaning? I havn' had to mess with mine yet but want to know what to avoid.
 

· Reef Overlord
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489 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I got the new Evolution Pumps, mine is the 750, and its only 5 months old and I had to replace the front grills 4 times in the first 3 months and after those I just left them running broken. I called hydor and before I finished explaining what was broke one them, they told me that always happens and then asked for my address to ship me new ones... never had to pay, but just got lazy having to e-mail them each time they broke, the first two broke in the first 3 weeks..
Ok, so it seems that there is a known design issue on the new evos...maybe the tunzes will be the way I go.(just cant drop 450 a piece for the MP40)
 

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This is how all of mine have failed....



the red lines are where the plastic breaks...

that thing in the center is a rubber stop, and if the pump starts backwards it hits the rubber stop and goes in the right direction, so after so many hits the plastic fails and just gets ripped out. now mine runs backward 2 out of three times, which I have found to create even more random flow so I keep it like that :rolleyes:
 

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· Reef Overlord
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489 Posts
Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Ok, so I'm having second thoughts about cutting a huge hole in this load bearing wall...I'm thinking about just bringing the tank in the house, but placing it to the left of the chair in the above pic and plumbing it through the wall into the soon-to-be-built fish room. Still deciding and ironing out the plan
 

· Reef Overlord
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489 Posts
Discussion Starter · #19 ·
I've always had the tank accessable in the house. The only way I would do it inwall would be to have no opening in the display side, and the more I think about it, the less I like that idea. Right now, I'm thinking about putting it along the wall beside the chair, but I'm trying to convince the wife that it would look cool as a peninsula sticking out from the wall to the left of the crosses. Of course, I've got to figure this out since a peninsula would require some custom drilling.
 

· Reef Overlord
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489 Posts
Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Ok, so this planning stage is getting crazy. I just didn't like the placement of the tank as originally shown in wall, and wasn't crazy about cutting the hole for the DT. I really don't want a DT full stand and canopy in my already full living room, because it would be too full. SOOOOOO, the next best place is in the eat in kitchen. Right now, this area houses our deep freezer and school room (yes, we homeschool, no we don't unschool). As the kids have gotten older, they use the school room less and less and use their own rooms more and more. Pros for the kitchen area is that it is not carpeted and is a perfect space for a tank up to 84" wide and 24" deep. Since I like tangs, 84" will make my future tangs pretty happy.:fish::fish::fish::fish:

So, looks like a custom tank will be in order...maybe 84x24x30...that would be like 260g in the display. What would be a good sump that will fit under the stand? Also, I'm open to suggestions for a skimmer for a heavily stocked FOWLR with future plans as a mixed reef.

Still kicking around the idea of through the wall plumbing, but this wall is an outside wall and I would need an outside building to do this. Anybody have any links to someone who has used an outdoor building as a fishroom?
 
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