The Reef Tank banner
1 - 20 of 183 Posts

· Just some guy, you know?
Joined
·
40,404 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello all!

This first post will be light because I'm exhausted from moving a 135 Custom Starfire A.G.E. rimless cube tank yesterday with 1/2 inch glass.

Franky it's a dumb time to buy a tank because I expect to be moving myself in about 2-3 months, but this is an amazing tank, for an unbelievable deal. There was just no way to pass it up,.. the skimmer is worth more than I got this whole system for.

The tank was setup for 7 years in it's previous location, when I moved I pulled out the sand because cleaning it would not be possible. I'll run it bare bottom until at least the next move then I'll figure out what I want to do.

There is an algae issue which I will address, and an aptista issue which I will also be working on,. but it came packed with really cool leathers! A SPS coral that I'm not familiar with, a Frogspawn, pylops, mushrooms, this really awesome rock flower anenamie along with probably much more that I haven't even seen yet. It has a foxface, a mated pair of those cool black clowns, the snowflake (I think?) clown pair, coral beauty, lawnmower, one of those cool long tentical starfish, some chromas, manderin, and I might have forgot something.

The equipment list is killer too!! Check this out.
-Avast SP2 Black Perl recerculating skimmer with neck cleaner and collection cup
-2 Gyre pumps with controllers
-2 Ocean Revive T-247 LED fixtures.
-60G Sump that I will probably baffle out to add a fuge and filter socks
-Jebao 3693 GPH DC 10 speed return pump with controller
-Steal Stand
-Boxes of various aquarium supplies, foods, other LED lights that need a fix but include the parts, and I'm probably forgetting something here too.

This is all I have for a picture right now, but I hope to get a few more today:
For scale, this is about 8 feet tall
Moving Day by Wiskey2727, on Flickr

Whiskey
 

· Just some guy, you know?
Joined
·
40,404 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
:eek: Awesome! Well done Whiskey.......Is this like a prelude to this now becoming a 'forever home' for you and your new guests?
Hack
Sort of. I'm keeping the tank of course, but the townhouse I'm in right now is a rental and I'll be buying a house in a couple months. So the tank is their forever home, but the house isn't lol.

I now have the tanks I want. A large system in the livingroom, the 10G in my bedroom to help me fall asleep, and the 3G Pico at the office. I've always had this setup since the late 90's. Most recently (for the last 8 years) the bedroom and work tank were Freshwater, but now it's salt.

Whiskey
 

· Just some guy, you know?
Joined
·
40,404 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Good looking tank Wiskey, it seems to follow the previous build cycle. Love the dog :)
Thank you Doug! Yeah,.. He's sweet. His name is Comet. He's a rescue, was rescued along with hundreds of dogs from a puppy mill that was just terrible conditions. He's the most loving dog with his family, but he's still wary of strangers 6 years later.

Whiskey
 

· Just some guy, you know?
Joined
·
40,404 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Love your tank and set-up.

Beautiful dog, too!
Thank you Cath!!! Good to see you in GRD :)

Sorry,.. I'm caught totally without food pictures. It's too bad too because I've been doing some amazing grilling lately.

Whiskey
 

· Just some guy, you know?
Joined
·
40,404 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I have slightly better photos today!

FTS:
IMG_1846 by Wiskey2727, on Flickr

Mushrooms:
IMG_1847 by Wiskey2727, on Flickr

I think this is a frogspawn but it needs to come out a little further to be sure:
IMG_1851 by Wiskey2727, on Flickr

Cool Palays,.. Do you know what these are? I've seen them before:
IMG_1857 by Wiskey2727, on Flickr

Other Mushrooms:
IMG_1858 by Wiskey2727, on Flickr

Rock Flower Nem:
IMG_1859 by Wiskey2727, on Flickr

I have no idea yet. It's had a tough go of it, but if it comes around I'll be able to figure out what this is:
IMG_1861 by Wiskey2727, on Flickr

Zoa's
IMG_1863 by Wiskey2727, on Flickr

Manderin:
IMG_1868 by Wiskey2727, on Flickr

I need to get some good shots of the Clowns. They are some special ones,... but I'm not sure what. Maybe platinum, or snowflake, or something. The black ones are a mated pair.

Whiskey
 

· Just some guy, you know?
Joined
·
40,404 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
The current perams after the move are:
Phosphate = 0.2
Alk = 8.0
Mag = 1000
CA = 385

I'm using those Hanna Kits because I'm tired of comparing colors. The Mag is Red Sea.

Target Perams:
Alk = 8.0 (win!)
Mag = 1300
CA = 420
Phosphate = 0.05 to 0.03
Nitrate = 5-15

I plan to do the Triton method at least at the start with this tank. I've heard great things about it, and I like the simplicity. I have 2 DOS dosers for it,.. and basically you measure ALK, keep it at 8, have things in balance to start with, then match the other 3 parts to whatever you are dosing Alk at. Every now and again you test Mag/CA and adjust.

Whiskey
 

· Just some guy, you know?
Joined
·
40,404 Posts
Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Things are starting to settle out in this tank. I have the Triton Dosers running, and I'm using a small amount of Acro Power for Aminos on the last head. Phosphate has dropped from 0.4 to 0.18 which is great progress. I don't want it to drop too fast, but removing the 7 year old sand is clearly having an impact, and my Fuge is doing well.

The corals seem to be plugging along, the weird SPS I can't ID has pylops now!!!! And I even bought some new frags! I got a couple chalice, an ORA Green Pylop Birdsnest, Garf Bonsi, Candycane, Idaho Grape Monti, and a couple other things I couldn't resist.

The other big news is that I think I found a house!!! I'm working on putting in an offer now. It has a layout that will allow me to have a Dedicated filter/Tank room, and that's on a wall that's shared with a bathroom sink, so I can even put in a little cheap vanity and have a sink in there!!

Soon, this build thread will get allot more square footage.

I need to put up some new pictures, stay tuned for that!
Whiskey
 

· Just some guy, you know?
Joined
·
40,404 Posts
Discussion Starter · #20 ·
THAT would be most cool! 15 minutes? Heck..... bribe some neighborhood kids and the 'Little red wagons'.
Hack
Well,.. I should be more specific. It's 15 min by Uhaul, probably 2 hours by little red wagon ;)

Whiskey
 

· Just some guy, you know?
Joined
·
40,404 Posts

· Just some guy, you know?
Joined
·
40,404 Posts
Discussion Starter · #24 ·
It's been a little bit since I've updated this thread, and today, with it's wind-chill temps of -20 to -30 degrees (very unusual for us) and 10 inches of snow (also unusual) is a perfect time to update!

The tank has been running Triton for the last few months and I really like it over the standard 2 part solutions. I like the consistency of mixing up new batches, and the stability I get from that more than anything. I also like the added trace elements, and the PH result from using it over something like a CA reactor that I've used in the past. My PH runs between 8.1 and 8.3 and this is the first time that I've been able to do that effortlessly and without using Kalk, and outside skimmer lines, and baked baking soda etc.

Another thing that I've been really loving is the BB Tank. Although I much prefer fresh white sand, the fact that this tank was moving twice in a couple months made it easier than having to replace a sandbed after such a short time. I really love that I don't have to worry about sand blowing around, or corals dieing because they fall in the sand. I've struggled with BB in the past, meaning I could never keep the coral alive, but this time I have much more fish, and I'm not trying to push Phosphate to 0, and it's just doing amazingly well.

Speaking of the move, that should have been done already, but I've had some setbacks with my new house. It's now looking like the move is pushed to the end of March.

That aside, here are some pictures!
IMG_3236 by Wiskey2727, on Flickr

IMG_3240 by Wiskey2727, on Flickr

IMG_3241 by Wiskey2727, on Flickr

IMG_3242 by Wiskey2727, on Flickr

IMG_3245 by Wiskey2727, on Flickr

IMG_3257 by Wiskey2727, on Flickr

IMG_3265 by Wiskey2727, on Flickr

IMG_3234 by Wiskey2727, on Flickr

Whiskey
 

· Just some guy, you know?
Joined
·
40,404 Posts
Discussion Starter · #26 ·
I think one of the mistakes people make is trying to keep Phosphates at 0.
Most of the time people find corals look better with some Phosphate.
I have absolutely found this, it's been one of the hardest things for me to get over in this hobby. The Phosphate levels I'm targeting now would have terrified me 10 years ago. I'm shooting for Phosphate between 0.1 and 0.2 - I basically don't make changes if it lands between those two.

I used to target 0.03, and lost all kinds of corals to bleaching and anytime I traveled and just had an autofeeder instead of myself feeding frozen for a day or two STN seemed to start.

I've learned to accept a little algae, and my corals seem much happier. I do think that I could cut back to 0.05-0.1 and be okay, but this is working so any changes will come very slow.

Whiskey
 

· Just some guy, you know?
Joined
·
40,404 Posts
Discussion Starter · #28 ·
I HAVE GOT TO GET AN 8 X 10 GLOSSY of that Blenny! AWESOME!
Once my Phosphates fell below the scale on my API kits I quit checking them, and go by 'looks'. Whatever you are doing Whiskey, KEEP DOING IT! ?
Hack
Didn't that come out great!? If you click on it you can go to my Flicker profile and download the image. That's at 4K resolution, with 300PPI, it should be plenty to print.

Speaking of which, I'm keeping a book with a 8x10 FTS shot monthly so I can look back over the tank's life. Not so cool yet with only 3 photos, but it will be super cool when it's 5 years old. It's like a man scrap book.

You handled the phosphate thing much better than I did, I went all crazy with it.

Whiskey
 

· Just some guy, you know?
Joined
·
40,404 Posts
Discussion Starter · #30 ·
THAT sounds top shelf cool right there Whiskey keeping a photo album of your tank's journey. WAIT.....I'm an 'old person'.....are you talking a PAPER PICTURE ALBUM or 'virtual'? Either would be cool, but PAPER on a coffee table would be awesome!

As far as 'me doing things right' Pal, the jury's still out and won't pass judgment till I get tired of this hobby.......After that righteous battle I fought with GHA 4-5 years ago which started me on the road of 'cleaning my tank up'.......paying attention to Nitrates n Phosphates, and my journey to control/lower them. And this leading me to my Carbon dosing journey with Vodka, which I'm in my 4th year of now, I think. Has allowed me to keep my NO3 at a level I choose, which is > 0 < 5 ppm which I find our system likes the best, and Phosphates below the scale of API I am in my HAPPY PLACE with THAT. I haven'd seen any GHA rearing it's obnoxious head since then. THOUGH at the moment I am inching towards panic till I get my new skimmer and my UV back on line.....THAT'S just a wide open door for bad juju.
View attachment 240940 View attachment 240941 View attachment 240942
Hack
Quite the turnaround!!! I'm not sure what my Nitrate is, but I also like non-0 values. Last time I checked it was closer to 10, I would prefer 5 but I'm not going to worry about it as long as it's under 40. I would like to attack the green brush type algae I have, but it's growing super slow, my glass doesn't have a dusting of Algae for 2 days, and I really have most major things on hold until the move.

Slight side track,.. Are you still dosing Vodka without a skimmer? If so, I would recommend reconsidering that. Vodka is fuel for bacteria that grows and takes up NO3/PO4 and the skimmer removes the free bacteria. It's a great export mechanism. Without the skimmer though the free bacteria populations build eventually causing a clear slime like substance, and also using up a ton of O2 from the water. This will lower PH, and eventually can cause O2 to become dangerously low.

Long story short, if you are still dosing Vodka, I might suggest you hold off on that until your skimmer is fixed.

Oh yeah,.. and it is definitely a paper picture album (and I save the digital copies too). A coffee table book in front of the tank is exactly the vision :)

Whiskey
 

· Just some guy, you know?
Joined
·
40,404 Posts
Discussion Starter · #31 ·
Happy Sunday!

Sorry it's been a while since an update, things have been super crazy with the move and travel for work. Long story short, the tank is in it's new location in my new house!!!!

The move went well, but BOY was it ever a long day. I did get the opportunity to shuffle the rock around a little bit and move the lower light coral to the bottom which is super good. I also realized one of my lights had problems with some of the channels, and I was struggling with the Ocean Revive ones too, so I made a little upgrade there. I'll get to that in a bit.

This is the current layout of the tank:
IMG_3317 by Wiskey2727, on Flickr

Regarding the lighting upgrade, I did some Par tests and found that even at 24" height lights couldn't cover a 36" cube evenly. Originally I was thinking about AI 64's, but then I realized I needed 4 lights for proper coverage. With that many lights, the AI 64 was massive overkill, but 4 of the smaller units were just perfect. With this setup I have about 400 Par at the very top, and about 250 at the lower corners. The lights are running at about 80% blues, and 30% white. They have the HD option, so I could drive blue past 100% so I have lots of room to crank it up if I need to. The hood is still temporary, but this is how they are laid out now:
IMG_3328 by Wiskey2727, on Flickr

This picture is just for fun:
IMG_3329 by Wiskey2727, on Flickr

The next step is to build a new hood that matches my kitchen cabinets. After that I need to decide if I'm going to plumb it into the room that will become the tank room, or build a stand surround next.

Comments welcome!
Whiskey
 

· Just some guy, you know?
Joined
·
40,404 Posts
Discussion Starter · #33 ·
Thank you Hack!!

I'm loving having a little sand in there again! It's a little more work to keep it clean, but I love how it finishes off the look of the tank.

The lighting is stinking expensive, but at least it's a one time purchase with an expected 5 year life. I will appreciate not spending $300 every year on bulbs and, over the long run, assuming the lights live as long as expected it negates the cost. There are cheaper options of course, but I find there is a big difference in how the color mixes, and how different colors look between the "high end" lights and the budget options. I'm sure the radion ones would have been just as good but AI is what I have experience with, and is what is available at local shops.

I did have one big bump in the road though. My Hanna KH test kit was giving readings of 6.4 so I kept upping my dosing. Eventually I hit a point where I really started to question things, and I was almost out of Reagent anyway so I opened another one. The test with this one showed 11 DKH!!!!! I retested with the old one and got something in the 6 range again. I confirmed the nearly 11 reading with another kit, and so now I'm bringing that down. I have no idea why it was so far off.

Whiskey
 
1 - 20 of 183 Posts
Top