Adam G’s 8ft Rimless Reef

Discussion in 'Tank Builds' started by Adam G, Oct 6, 2018.

  1. jlanger

    jlanger "The North Remembers"
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    Umm... step stool???

    [​IMG]

    Based on documented photographic evidence, that aquascaping process looks a tad precarious!
    You know... high center of gravity (putting it politely) cantilevered over an older dining room chair with chair glides on a tile floor (that was bound to get wet).
     
  2. OP
    Adam G

    Adam G Born to Reef!
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    Angie, I can expound a little on my “research”.......

    I have been reading large tank build threads (180 to 400g) on another large reef forum. I noticed some similarities in people putting together large reef tanks with success and little to no die off of SPS. Many people claim to have the secret to no new tank syndrome, but I want to see long term real results.

    I have come across several threads where people have successfully done what I am trying to do: transfer the contents of my over full Reefer 525xl to a large tank with very few losses (RTN, STN). Then I like to read through the thread and watch how the tank matures and grows the first 2 years to see if they are truly successful long term with the switch over.

    There seem to be several methods of transfer:

    1) Set up the tank and throw everything in there as is. Established live rock, coral, fish, and inverts. Sometimes successful, sometimes not. Sometimes long term instability and algae outbreaks with a lot of coral casualties. Other times it takes off flawlessly and remains healthy and vibrant for years to come.

    2) Set up the tank, throw in a raw shrimp as an ammonia/nutrient source, wait 4 to 6 weeks for everything to turn into nitrates, get a bunch of algae, algae receeds, do a large water change, then transfer everything over. This is little less risky but sometimes there are mini cycles and often times residual algae issues moving forward.

    3) Bacteria in a bottle cycle. Quicker cycle, but similar to raw shrimp method. More specialized blends of bacteria for nitrifying bacteria. Some of these products are getting pretty darn good. They are growing these bacteria in ponds and studying which strains give the best results.

    4) Live rock removed from the ocean, kept wet, and mailed overnight within a few days of harvest. This seems to work for many with no cycle issues. Think established very old colonies of aerobic and non-aerobic bacteria that nature has built over eons, sponges, and other denitrifyers. However, many have lingering issues of gorilla crabs and other unwanted hitch hikers. Some experience die off of sponges and macro algae and do get spikes of ammonia etc.

    So I want to do a combination of the methods. One thread I read was titled something like 300g reef in a week or something like that. This guy transferred in a day or two and pummeled the tank with Prodibio brand bacteria. I think he said 5 vials a day for every few days. He also put in other brands as well. He had well established live rock from his precious tank. I think he is maybe 6 months in and his tank is doing great and loaded with huge colorful high end acro colonies.

    I have plenty of time so here is my plan:

    Dose Dr Tim’s ammonia and Multiple brands of bacteria. I read a study where they tested 7 or 8 different brands of bacteria in a bottle and Fritz Turbo 900 tested the best consistently at eliminating ammonia within 24 to 36 hours where others took weeks so that is what I will put in first. When ammonia is back to zero I will hit it with ammonia again. Once it eliminates all ammonia within 24hrs it is cycled.

    Next I will start dosing Prodibio in hopes of adding different strains and creating biodiversity. Truth is, I have a bunch sitting on my shelf. So I figure why not try this method as it has worked for others.

    I also want to order some live rock rubble straight out of the ocean and shipped overnight for my sump. I figure I can inspect this thoroughly for hitch hikers and it will be pre-seeded with natural ocean bacteria.

    I will then slowly add fish and corals over a few week period while monitoring ammonia, nitrites, nitrates, phosphates. Trying to keep everything balanced before adding more.

    So really in the end nothing super special. Just going to take all of the methods that have worked for others and combine them in hopes of no new tank syndrome. I really think a lot of new tank syndrome has to do with diversity of bacteria. I am no scientist but from all I have read this is my strategy.
     
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  3. jlanger

    jlanger "The North Remembers"
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    I'm intrigued by this idea and maybe I should add some to my new system to boost the microfauna.
     
  4. OP
    Adam G

    Adam G Born to Reef!
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    Let me know. VikingsCrazy and i are placing an order in the near future for some Florida live rock and critters
    from Salty Bottom. Paul got some from them previously. He sent me pics of what he got. Looks great and price is right. Lots of life.
     
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  5. OP
    Adam G

    Adam G Born to Reef!
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    PH and salinity probe calibrated and installed. Apex programming issue resolved as well. My apex was not reading one of my 1” flow sensors. Got that figured out last night. Apex par meter set up as well. Getting 200 par the top of the aquascape and 160 at the sand with just the T-5s. So auto top off set up and the dreaded cord management project this weekend.

    Lights: the plan was to use my Hydra 52s in my Aquatic Life Hybrid T-5’s. I have decided that will be overkill as I m already getting 200 par with the t-5s. Those Hydra 52’s have 4 pucks each and kick out a ton of power. Have them at 55% on my Reefer and am getting 300 plus PAR.

    I have decided to get some Radion XR-15’s with diffusers to go with the t-5s. This will allow me to have the sunrise and sunset effect and it should be fairly efficient wattage wise. The plan will be Radions ramp up fo an hour and a half, t-5s kick on for 6 hours, t-5s ramp down for an hour and a half. This will save on t-5 bulbs as well.

    ***I will have 4 Hydra 52s and an Apex Module up for sale in about a month. If anyone is interested in PM me.
     
  6. OP
    Adam G

    Adam G Born to Reef!
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    Forgot to post this one my wife took of my daughter.


    BFE99A16-E616-4B67-939B-877880BD54B2.jpeg
     
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  7. acharpenter

    acharpenter Pitas' Pita
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    Thanks for the write up on your plan!!! (jotting note to self...Fritz Turbo 900...)
     
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  8. nox.rupaw

    nox.rupaw I contributed!
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    I personally feel you should hold onto the hydras for a bit longer. The Aquatic Life Hybrid as far as i'm aware doesn't have any active cooling fans on the T5s.The high par you're seeing right now will start tapering off real quick without cooling. Now for shallower tanks it wouldn't matter, but i think it'll make a difference on a deep tank.

    I look at Aquatic Life Hybrid as a light rack where one would use LEDs to do majority of the work, and the T5s would act as supplemental lighting. If thats correct, then i think you'd need a lot of Radion XR15s to do the heavy lifting. Thats a significant investment. I'd personally still use the rack but hook up the Hydra (which have proven themselves to you), but use them at a lower intensity and adjust accordingly.
     
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  9. VikingsCrazy

    VikingsCrazy I contributed!
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    The live sand by the pound should do the same thing. It comes off the ocean floor. The more surface area the more bacteria. We will be doing an order from salty bottom the first of the year. Let me know if you want anything from there. I threw a little of everything at my new tank. I saved 5 gallons of seasoned water out of the 40 breeder each day for 10 days and added it while filling the tank. I took rubble, sand, and chaeto out of the 40 breeder sump and put it in the new sump. I added seachum start up I won at the swap. I added coraline algae in a bottle. I added tunze care bacter. I added Dr.Tim's. Then I ordered 35 pounds of live rock from salty bottom for ocean bacteria and die off to add ammonia. I threw 2 anthias in there after 2 weeks that did just fine. Started adding corals after a month. Everything seems to be doing great!
     
    #89 VikingsCrazy, Dec 14, 2018
    Last edited: Dec 14, 2018
  10. OP
    Adam G

    Adam G Born to Reef!
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    I hope that the passive cooling will not degenerate the bulbs too quickly. They are in my basement which stays cooler and has good air flow but that is not going to help much without a fan blowing across the bulbs. The whole T-5 idea this time around was simply to supplement the LED’s. In all my reading up on light combinations and pluses and minuses of each type, not to mention 7 years experience and succes with first AI SOL blues and then Hydra 52’s, I have found the only draw back to 100% LED’s is the single light source and the shadowing that occurs. The solution to this was just add more LEDs thus the 4 Hydra 52’s on the five foot tank running at 50 to 60 percent.

    My first plan was to get 3 more Hydra 52’s. However, the non hd’s In white are hard to find and I needed 3 more. So instead I went T5. 2 advantages to new Radions, I can run both tanks at the same time and slowly move corals over time, and I will get 6 to 8 of the XR 15’s Gen 4 pros so I can evenly spread out the pucks. I figure 1 fixture every foot ought to do it. This will also provide light overlap with the diffusers.

    It seems the used Hydra 52’s still sell used for $250ea shipped on the big sites and now is the time to make the change if I am going to do it. Kessil A360x would be cool but they are pretty spendy for the amount of light output you get.

    I am not a high PAR junky. 250 to 350 PAR works well for me.
     
    #90 Adam G, Dec 14, 2018
    Last edited: Dec 14, 2018
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  11. OP
    Adam G

    Adam G Born to Reef!
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    Cycle notes: Fritz Turbo 900 cycling bacteria added on 12-9. Ammonia level brought up to 1.8ppm measure on Red Sea test kit. 24hrs later ammonia measured at 1.2ppm. After 48hrs ammonia measured at .03ppm.

    Day 3 dose ammonia back up to 2ppm, add some Prodibio bacteria to the tank to add to the Fritz 900 culture. Add 1 vial bio digest (basically a carbon source is all this is). Day 4 (yesterday) ammonia down to .08ppm. So it is gaining some momentum. Also added 20 to 25 pounds of establish live rock to the sump yesterday.

    Once the tank is turning 2.0ppm Ammonia into zero Ammonia in 24hrs the tank is cycled for fish according to the instructions. I will be waiting until nitrites are gone and nitrates are at acceptable levels before adding any livestock.

    I will continue to add Prodibio bacteria daily primarily because I have it sitting on the shelf and need to get rid of it. I don’t know that it is necessary to add this in addition to the fritz turbo 900 but you never know if there are slightly different strains that are helping make a healthy and diverse bacterial population so I figure it can’t hurt.

    Observation- Wow, this Fritz Turbo 900 is amazing. Colonizing within hours. I had read that you want to purchase it from a seller that keeps it refrigerated so I ordered it from Reef Cleaners and called and talked to them, they said it comes in to them temperature controlled and in styrofoam and they store it at 40 degrees and ship it with a cold pack and in a cooler out to the customer. Keeping the bacteria cool and dormant is key to making sure loads of bacteria are alive and well and ready to go to work.

    This stuff is living up to the testing that I read about. I can recommend this to anyone to initial cycle on a tank.
     
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  12. OP
    Adam G

    Adam G Born to Reef!
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    Weekend update- Tunze Auto Top Off installed and wire management begun. Cycle doing well.

    Aquilles Tang has officially graduated to eating Nori off an algae clip. Took him 2 weeks to eat Nori that was rubberbanded to a rock. Switched to a clip last week and he would shyly peck at it. Now he devours it as soon as the clip hits the water. He is also eating Mysis out of my hand. He is ready for the big tank as soon as it is ready for him. Blue reef Chromis doing very well too.
     
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    Adam G

    Adam G Born to Reef!
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    Big day today.... the Achilles is out of quarantine and in the tank as of this morning. The three Blue Chromis are in as well. Here he is shortly after I put him in.yo 49F46C29-7830-4FB2-A3DC-5B0906108D7D.jpeg


    You can see him in the middle of this pic. He is enjoying his new 8ft home. He is running laps in and around the rock work with a pit stop at the algae clip to grab some Nori. He also ate some Spiulina Brine. He is adjusting amazingly well.
    EABBB7FB-26F4-4D90-8ACA-C0C603F0A0E0.jpeg

    This past week I put a couple of my LPS colonies in. That is a hammer just to the right of center and some super bright green trumpets on the left side.
    00892A3E-F8EE-4DAE-9304-9944ECF9116E.jpeg
     

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  14. Leicester56

    Leicester56 I contributed!
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    A glorious day, indeed!
     
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    Adam G

    Adam G Born to Reef!
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    Here is a peek under the hood. I am out of room. With the sump, protein skimmer, UV sterilizer, algae turf scrubber, filter socks, apex flow meters, cryptic fuge with live rock, 20g freshwater reservoir, and dual return pumps I think I have all my bases covered.
    2A2C28E0-021D-46D5-BC1A-79C37CDB0676.jpeg


    This pic is a close up of my toxic green trumpet. I got it as a 3 head frag from Aqua SD a year ago and now it is the size of a baseball.
    8B80F8E1-5CC6-419F-B2D7-E9D1AD177B7A.jpeg
     
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    Adam G

    Adam G Born to Reef!
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  17. marty9876

    marty9876 Something funny
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  18. RSnodgrass

    RSnodgrass TCMAS President
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    Will be fun watching that scape fill in.
     
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    Adam G

    Adam G Born to Reef!
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    Quarantine tank full again. 8 lyretail anthias and 12 azure damsels.

    4109A782-FAA6-40D1-8B3C-E03E97401981.jpeg

    Now have a total of 4 LPS Colonies, 8 more to go in. Just doing 1 or 2 a day. Really focusing on mixing colors and carefully choosing placement for color and texture. Hoping to think out each and every coral I put in to make a great color and texture landscape.
    C573CE0D-67FF-489C-8F3C-13AD01C46E63.jpeg
     
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    Adam G

    Adam G Born to Reef!
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    Close to done getting my LPS switched over. Starting to fill in. 6 more colonies to go and then it is SPS time.

    8AA9DF17-5DDE-4F77-A991-C2F4BE8D3FFE.jpeg
     
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