The Reef Tank banner

1 - 20 of 161 Posts

·
To Boldly Reef ...
Joined
·
1,694 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all. At first I wasn't going to join the nano build-off, but decided late in the game to join in. I have some of my initial build pics, but not all so I'm hoping it won't count too much against me. I just couldn't resist the build off.

So as the title suggests, my tank is a 20 gallon high. It's a tank I've had sitting in my garage for awhile and actually tried to sell it when the wife and I had a yard sale this past September. I ultimalely decided to set it up after the wife took me to Ripley's Aquarium of the Smokies last December. It was there that we saw a sea horse exhibit and my wife thought they looked cute and asked very innocently if it was possible to keep them in a home aquarium. At the time I wasn't sure, so I did some research and what do you know, you can if you set the tank up specifically for sea horses, thus the idea for the tank was born.

The setup. After doing alot of reading I found that a sea horse system could be a simple or complex as you wanted to make it. Alot of advice I got from TRT was to "keep it simple". So that's what I did. I was also curious to see how this tank would fare compared to my bigger and more sophisticated 180 gallon SPS tank.

The parts:
20 gallon high AGA
CPR RR back-pak
Aquaclear 30 HOB filter
Maxjet 600 PH x2
ReaSea WaveMaster Pro
CoraLife 130W PC hood (one 65W 10K and one 65W actinic) with moon lights
VisaTherm 100W stealth heater
30 pounds mixed Marshall Island and Fiji LR
Caribsea Special Grade Reef Sand

The stocking plan:
H. Reidi x2
peppermint shrimp x2
Turbo snails x2
Nesserus snails 4-8
Certh Snails 4-8
mushrooms
zoas
GSP
Kenya Tree
Finger leather
Toadstool Mushroom Leather
Gorgoians 1-2
Macroalgae

The plan. I will be using the CPR skimmer as well as regular water changes as my means of filtration. The AC 30 is used for added circulation as well as a place to use any chemical media I might need sucj as carbon, phosphate remover, etc. I'll start with one MJ 600 and the Wavemaster to create tubulant flow to oppose the output of the AC 30. I'll add the second MJ 600 if needed. Initially I'll add the LR and sand to get the tank cycled. Then the addition of Macroalgae to add to the aquascape and create places for pods to hide and proliferate. The first inhabitants will be various snails and peppermint shrimp only. No crabs or other kinds of shrimp as they will likely harass the horses when they are added. Then as the tank matures I'll add the other types of coral, especially the gorgonians for hitching posts. After the pod population is built up and the tank is stable for a couple of months, I'll add the H. reidi.

Pics to come.
 

·
To Boldly Reef ...
Joined
·
1,694 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks guys. It seems good on paper, I'm just hoping it turns out well. This will be the 4th time I have tried setting this particular tank up, and I have yet to be sucessful with it long term. Not sure if there are evil spirits in the silicone or the glass or what :funny: .
 

·
To Boldly Reef ...
Joined
·
1,694 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Here are some of the starting pictures.

First, the empty tank in the garage.


Skimmer.


Coralife hood.




I didn't take any photos of the AC 30, so I included a stock photo I found on the internet.


Wavemaker.


I didn't include a picture of the powerheads cause I'm sure all of you know what a MJ 600 looks like.

Anyway, post assembly pictures to follow.
 

·
To Boldly Reef ...
Joined
·
1,694 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I hear you ... I'm really starting to think this tank has bad karma or something. The first attempt ended in a massive tank crash. The second, I tore down out of frustration because I couldn't get anything to grow. It would just survive for awhile then start withering. The third, was deffinitely my fault as I got busy and neglected my tank.

This attempt is by far the simplest setup I've tried, that's why I'm kinda curious what it does.
 

·
To Boldly Reef ...
Joined
·
1,694 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Well, here are some pictures of the initial setup and initial aquascaping.







 

·
To Boldly Reef ...
Joined
·
1,694 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Well, I've had a minor set back. We had a power outage yesterday morning for about 10-20 minutes. Not really long enough to cause too many problems but it did cause the AC 30 I was using to shut off, and when it restarted it apparently couldn't pull enough suction to restart the flow through the filter. The motor therfore, burned up, so I have to fighure out a replacement.

I have been thinking about maybe going with a canaster filter this time, or possibley building a closed loop to boost flow a little. I am running into some minor flow issues. I'm having some cyano problems that I tink are due to the lower flow.
 

·
To Boldly Reef ...
Joined
·
1,694 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Here are a few pictures before I lost my AC 30.










 

·
To Boldly Reef ...
Joined
·
1,694 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I reaquascaped the nano a little and added a Kenya tree and a few patches of GSP.
 

·
To Boldly Reef ...
Joined
·
1,694 Posts
Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I have been thinking about my flow problems, and have tenatively decided to build a claosed loop for the tank. I'm thinking of using either an Eheim 1048, 1250, or a QuietOne 1200 for the pump and running in intake hook up and over the back of the tank. The return will be a single line that will terminate in 3/4" LocLine that will be split with Y fittings to yeild four out put openings. I'm thinking this should generate turnover between 7 and 15 times the tank volume an hour.
 

·
Mommy Mod
Joined
·
5,294 Posts
I'm thinking this should generate turnover between 7 and 15 times the tank volume an hour.
Just a thought 7-15 times is a pretty wide range for a horse tank... since it requires such low flow...It sounds like the flow is really going to be spread out, but I would but a gate valve on it to make sure you can dial down the flow if it ends up blowing the horses around since they are such weak swimmers...

HTH
Amy
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
416 Posts
Adding a ball valve or something similiar to give you the ability to turn down flow is always a good idea IME.

Personally I have found that through the use of spraybars I can have the flow in my horses tanks 20x plus. JME The tank I'm building now will be close to 30x so we'll see how that goes.

Your tank looks good but IMO I would add some more places for them to hitch. JMO.

Good Luck.
 

·
To Boldly Reef ...
Joined
·
1,694 Posts
Discussion Starter · #19 ·
As for the hitching need, I am planning to add some gorgonians a little later (once I get the flow problem fixed again). Any other suggestions for hitching posts?

As for the closed loop, I am thinking of using either an Eheim 1048 or 1250 or a QuietOne 1200 as the pump, and terminating the return for the closed loop with either dividing Loc Line or a 1/2" circle flow assembly. The circle fow assembly looks like a cross between loc line and a spray bar. I added a pic of my very roughly drawn plan, which does call for a ball valve in the return line to regulate flow. ;)



Does anyone have any preferences of Eheim over QuietOne? Is one quieter than the other? Is one more prone to leak in an external application?
 

·
To Boldly Reef ...
Joined
·
1,694 Posts
Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Well, I ordered a QuietOne 1200 from Drs Foster and Smith. They were on sale for $19.99. It has 1/2" MPT inlet and outlet. I'm planning on using 3/4" thin walled PVC to build the CL and terminate it using part of the circle overflow on one side of the tank and one or two 3" flare nozzles on the other side. I should be circulaing about 249 gph with this setup for 11X turnover per hour. I plan to plumb a ball valve to adjust flow if it is too strong or plumb a spray bar at the termination of the CL with larger holes to decrease the "jet" effect as the water returns.
 
1 - 20 of 161 Posts
Top