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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Going back to roots and upgrading 60g back to original 125g.
Tank specs:
125g, 60x20x24 acrylic center overflow and cls back wall intakes with over the top returns
36 inch stand with 9 inch canopy black pine closed back

will use existing equipment form 60g as follows:
30g sump with 3 sections
ASM G3 skimmer
Sedra 500gph sump return pump(matched to skimmer pump)
360W VHO running off Icecap 660 ballast ( will move to 440W once lightbulbs runout)
2 sea swirl 3/4 inch returns - one for sump and one for in front corners
2 fixed returns in back corners still over top

The 60G was supposed to be emergency tank after first 125g sprung a leak. 4 yes later I guess emergency is over. Will not miss the following:
1) MDF canopy/stand that is disintegrating day by day
2) over the top overflow box prone to loosing syphon
3) crowded canopy that is too low causing salt spray all over lights

To be decided still:
1) pump to use for cls or just do power heads
2) reuse existing sand or get all new
3) looking to do 4 inch sand bed but prob will do 3 don't want rock buried so looking for effective rock riser
4) how to setup tank without cycling for weeks as I need equipment for new tank and need to quickly transfer everyone over
5) all the stuffim forgetting

Opinions, thoughts, etc are welcome... I'll post pics this weekend of the 60g albeit I'm having phosphate issue at the moment and it's a little green - stand and canopy are ordered and tank will be ordered tomorrow once I decide if I want to pay extra 150 bucks for wider opening on top

Excited to be moving back to 125g
 

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300 Gallon Reef Tank
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I would use the 3 inch sand bed. Just my opinioin. Also I use a rock lift using 2" pvc pipe cut to height I want and drill several holes in the side. They are used to support the eggcrate stuff you get at lowes in the lighting section. Works great and is cheap. Nothing settles under rock because behind rock is a spraybar hooked to a pump that blows everything foward.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Nice tank dean... PVC and egg crate sounds like the way to go - did you run into problems with sand getting shifted from under the rock?
 

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300 Gallon Reef Tank
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Nice tank dean... PVC and egg crate sounds like the way to go - did you run into problems with sand getting shifted from under the rock?
Not at all. The flow is enough to keep anything from settling under rock but not enough to move the sand. Its a 6' wide tank and the spraybar is 3/4" pipe and the pump is a rio 2100. Holes drilled in pipe are maybe 1/4" and about 1 1/2" to 2" apart.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
9/12 Update:
The new tank is going in the formal dining room which will now be a bar and fish tank room (thanks to my loving wife who thought of it) - picked up the stand and canopy and added it into the room. The actual tank (and bar for that matter arrive next weekend)

First issue: they built the stand to the wrong dimensions.. its only 19 inches deep and the tank will be 20 inches... will talk to the LFS to see what can be done come Tuesday.

Picked up dry rock and sand from friend who took his 700+ tank down... gonna have to read up on the best way to cure the rock & sand

Now lets see how to post pictures...


amd the guys who will be moving in:
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
9/14 update:
so I should have known better than to just order the 125g 5ft wide standard acrylic tank. per my lfs the "standard" 125g 5ft wide is 60x18x24... Problem with that is that in actuality it's 112g. So the tank stand isn't wrong given the tank is only 18 deep ... I should have been clear on exact dimensions so I guess the build is a 110g build :)

Got 100lbs of dry rock along with 70lbs of dry sand from friends 700gallon which was taken down... He is letting me pick 50lbs of rock I want and as much sand as I need... Been doing the expedited rock acid bath for the last few days... Big trashcan with pump running 20% vinegar

Tank gets here Friday at which time I'll throw rock in after leak check

Next is to research how best to prep sand for use
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
9/19 Update:
Well the budget has gone out the window.. ended up buying a new sump as I will want a refugium and I couldnt figure out how to get sump into stand without tearing either new tank down or old tank down.


Spent all day today finding sump, figuring out which supporting brace to remove to get sump in, putting it all back together, staring at the pipe section at Lowes for 1 hr till my brain fried and I bought way more than Ill need only to find Im still short one piece

Ended up buying a Gen-X 30 and will use it along with the extra Gen-X 30 I had - one for sump and one for closed loop... a little less waterflow than some of you diehards would want but enough given I dont have hard corals...

The waterflow design is almost done... two intakes in center left and right with dual returns - one through the overflow and the second over the top through a sea swirl for the closed loop


For the sump return Im going to try and get away with one return but may need to throttle back the return less I blow the seal on the seaswirl.. may Y the return and put a second over the top but I need to find something to hold the second return down as I dont want to drill another hole

over the week will come the fun part of adding the piping and doing the leak check... I left myself almost no room on the overflow connections which I did because last time my tank sprung a leak and it was around overflow and I had cut out a full quare off and I think it didnt have proper support.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
9/22 Update:

Cab Vintage Reserve is tasting rather nice right now... full day's work on tank:
Got all plumming done and did leak check... no leaks at all around sump/pumps but have leaks in bulkhead to elbow fittings for closed loop... argg the one item I fully piped with PVC... gonna have to cut and tighten and retest.. will likely use a piece of hose this time to join to avoid further cuts

This is the left side of cabinet showing the ball valves and unions for both pumps


This is the center of cabinet showing return for sump (right bulkhead0 and the tee for CLS (hose)


and the right side of cabinet showing sump return and the other part of the tee for CLS up to seaswirl


and the bar arrived today as well :)


hard to explain to those that arent in the hobby why it took me 8 hrs to just get the plumming going in the tank.... knda sucks it leaks but its where I suspected it would and fix is simple yet timeconsuimng...

SHooting to have rocks and sand by end of day Sunday
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
9/24 update
I give up on threaded bulkheads... Tried to fix and it still leaks- bought slip bulkheads and will glue the pipes... Expect rock and sal water in tank by Sunday
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 · (Edited)
10/17/ Update
Slip bulkheads work like a charm.. been running and cycling for 4 weeks and parameters were right today for a transfer. Moved everything over except 40 lbs of wornout rock and wornout sand...

Items to still fix/do:
1. Clean up wiring under sump
2. Get light timer that will fit in plug in sump
3. Fix the sump baffling for bubble trap (lots of microbubbles from skimmer)
4. Get timer for LED moonlight
5. Dump sand and balance of old water from old tank
6. Add fans to canopy

Here are some pics:
Left


Right


Center


Sump and Wire Mess



Items done since last update:
1. Canopu done with LED moonlights and IceCap 660 ballast and 4 T12 VHO - went with all 50/50 this time
2. Transfered all sump equipment: Heater, Skimmer - will leave pump as spare
3. Transfered all livestock and 70% of live rock - had a few pcs that were giving me algea problems and were too bulky decided to leave them out

Casualties of move:
1. None that Im aware of - only scare during move was with female clown.. I somehow managed to get her gils stuck on the fishnet - took me about 5 minutes to free her up but I didnt bang her up too badly... not really sure what she got her gill stuck to as the fishnet is extremely fine to avoid this to begin with... she is swimming around with a pissed off face but nothing more than that. ate just fine
2. I FOUND my second brain... the **** clowns had knocked it off rock after they decided to totally redo the rock on once side of tank - finally found it - its not doing to well as it was upside down but it should recover nicely
3. FOUND about 10 different loose frags from the leather coral, mushrooms, and polyps which came in handy to populate the bare rock.

Will do a water change again tomorrow - next weekend its light timers and cleanup old tank weekend
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
10-19 update
The fish are loving the extra room specially the tang. The clown is no worse for the drama yesterday. Checked all parameters today and no spike in readings. Nitrates are too high and is to be expected as I hadn't done water change yet (20ppm) - they will need to wait until tomorrow as my sinuses won't handle the water change tonight (sucks to get older...)

All the corals are fully open and even grandpa leather has opened up and is starting to stretch polyps out... Clowns already are redecorating some of the loose mushrooms...
 

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Very nice!

Watching these builds are giving me the itch! However, financially it makes more sense for me to finish the tank I currently have.

Keep with the updates!
 

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You put all that stuff in your tank without a cycle? Is that bad? I've been waiting forever to cycle so i can add some coral.... Should i wait?
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Cycle whats that? ..... ;) yes putting all that in without cycle would be bad... It had cycled before I put all that stuff in. My cycle was just short. Remember I had the benefit of moving some live rock, etc from established tank which helped cut cycle down as I wasn't starting with 0 established filtration. I admit I'm at risk of a cycle bounce but I'm watching parameters daily. Just did a 10% water change today. I decided to risk cycle bounce as the old tanks overflow box started giving problems and the vho harness started shorting... Didn't want to fix just to tear it down in a week or so... Otherwise I would have given it another 2 weeks just to Safe. The parameters did show 0 ammonia, 0 nitrites and 20 nitrates so it did cycle just don't know if I left too much behind on old tank hence why I'm watching it

How long have you been cycling and what are your parameters now? Did you see ammonia go up and then back down followed by nitrite going up and then back down? Are you now only left wi nitrates? If the answer is 6 weeks and yes then you should be ready to start adding things slowly
 

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My params havnt changed at all. Nothing. My trate go up and down a lil. But thats it. I'm patient.... I would love to see you tank up and runnign one of these days. I'm prob down the street. Where do you shop? Theresas?
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Did you add something to start the cycle such as a piece of shrimp ? I would add a small piece on a string and see if that causes any spikes at all... If all that goes up is your nitrates then then tank is cycled...
I shop in the valley at aquarium city. Theresas is ok but it's my last resort. As for livestock I've tried doing the lax wholesale run. Some sell to the public and you find the animals much cheaper but you need to buy a lot so that hasn't happened in a while
I'm up at big sky where you at? ... I have a leather frag you can have from my tank to help stock yours once it's ready and some youngs coral from another tank you can have as well but be warned that tank is suffering from aptasia so you will likely end up with some as well (hence why I haven't taken any myself)

Btw you got me paranoid yesterday and I ended up spending 45 minutes doing every water test known to man :) all good... Nitrates down to 10ppm after water change.. Nother one scheduled for weekend.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Sorry missed the fact you have fish.. No need for shrimp...you want the leather frag? I'll pm you and you can come and pick it up Sunday... Sounds like youvefully cycled now
 
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