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Old 12-17-2010, 11:56 PM   #1
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Rummy's 65g Reef Build

To be honest it's going to be FOWLR for the time being and will then go to reef once I can upgrade lighting. I am trying to do all the right things I can for a reef setup so here's what I have going. There will be a lot of questions so bare with me.

I have cleaned the tank up with vinegar and water and rinsed it VERY well. The glass is nice and clean but the plastic for the overflow still has some build up on it. Is this going to be a problem or any thing you can recommend to clean it up further? I'll be painting the back and side of the overflow black.



Also there are (2) holes in the bottom of the overflow which I'd assume are for bulk heads. I don't have any plumbing for this so I'm curious what I should look into. I'd like for the return to possibly have two different outputs in the top of the tank?

I got a used RO/DI unit. I was told the filters were changed out about 6 months ago. Ran it for about 2.5 hours and got about 2.5 gallons out of it. Water pressure was about 76psi. I took samples into the LFS, tap water was 150ppm and RO was 0ppm so that was good. I'll be using Red Sea Pro Salt.



I don't know much about the skimmer at all. It says MTC on it and it looks like it was being pumped with a Mag 7 pump which I have and then a Mag 9.5 return pump. Does this sound right? I found that it's a model HSA-250. My plan is to use this skimmer sitting in a 20g breeder. Add some baffles with bubble trap so that the return pump isn't picking up any bubbles. Then try to run a separate tank above the 20g (probably a 5.5g) as a refugium. Thoughts? If I separated out the 20g with baffles to include a refugium it wouldn't be as large as what I could get out of the 5.5g tank over top of the 20g plus barely leave any room for the skimmer and return pump.





Lighting is my main problem right now. It has (4) 30" T12 VHO bulbs. (2) are Super Actinic and (2) are Super White. The ballast is an IceCap 430-008. Eventually I'd like to do a retro to the canopy and run (6) T5HOs with individual reflectors. Hopefully I have a little time before I need to do that?

Any and all input is welcome. I will be using 90lbs of CaribSea Sugar Sized Aragamax. I'm going to try and get the tank painted tomorrow and start making the RO water. I think I'm going to rinse the sand as best as I can and put it in the tank. Then start filling with mixed water I'll mix in buckets. After the tank settles down and clears up a bit I'll put in the live rock. Hoping to use around 100lbs or so.
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Old 12-18-2010, 08:47 AM   #2
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those lights you have are enough for medium light corals. you could start a reef immediately.
i wouldn't bother cleaning the tank any better. it's not going to matter.
i would add the live rock first and cycle the tank and then add the sand. put the rock on the glass bottom, then pour the sand around it.

here is what you need for the bottom of the overflow-
http://www.aquacave.com/searchresult...CategoryID=197

and here's what you need for the return-
http://www.locline.com/products/index.html

btw, i would not paint the back of the overflow. you'll not be able to see it from the viewing side, and you are going to want to see inside the overflow area. fish tend to jump in there and snails....
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Old 12-18-2010, 08:51 AM   #3
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Would the (6) T5HO setup be overkill or appropriate for this size tank?

I'm glad I don't have to get more of that stuff off. It was IMPOSSIBLE! I'm going to get the tank painted up today and back on the stand and start working on my sump and plumbing.

For tubing can I just use clear tubing from Lowe's in the plumbing section or is there something better? It's going to take a while to make the RO for the tank. Can anything go wrong with the saltwater if it's the only thing in the tank circulating by itself? I'm not exactly sure the date I'll be able to get the live rock but I'd like to be ready when that date comes.
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Old 12-18-2010, 08:55 AM   #4
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na..not overkill.
btw, i would not use clear tubing. try for the black. algae will build up easily inside the tubing if light is allowed in.
no..the tank can hold the salt water fine. it will be your final leak test!
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Old 12-18-2010, 08:57 AM   #5
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Great! Finally some type of plan on paper! Haha
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Old 12-18-2010, 10:02 AM   #6
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Great info from Doug. I have some more. I have the same protein skimmer. Mine is designed to be in-sump and yours looks like it could go either inside or outside of the sump. I have a large (3" diameter) outflow on mine

There should be a small plastic handle on the bottom just above the base. It slides back and forth. That controls how much water enters the chamber and controls the height in the column. It can be a bit tricky to adjust it correctly, but once it's dialed in it rarely needs to be adjusted.

The small blue valve in the middle controls how much air goes into the chamber.
The down tube connected to that connects to a pump (Mag 9.5 is a good unit).

Once broken it you want the water column to be about 1" - 2" high in the upper chamber. That will produce anywhere from a tea colored skimmate to a dark sludge over a few days to a week depending on what and how often you feed.

Oh, monthly (or at least quarterly) remove the outside section and clean it. You need to unscrew the top and bottom unions, remove that middle section and then unscrew that section (yes the top and bottom are screwed together). Remove the inner piece and make sure the 4 holes are clear. Rinse all the pieces, and then put it all back together.
Feel free to PM me if you have questions or problems with that skimmer.
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Old 12-18-2010, 11:03 AM   #7
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Thanks! That helped a ton! Will the mag 7 be an ok pump for it? That's what was being used on it previously. Then a mag 9.5 for the return. I thought that might return to much water but wasn't sure.

Also can the skimmer be ran with jut salt water being in the tank for a bit? Like i said before i wont have rock and sand in right away but i would like to check all plumping and make sure everything is running smoothly.

What would you guys recommend for power heads in the tank? I have two maxi jet 1200s which do 295gph.
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Old 12-18-2010, 11:23 AM   #8
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a couple seio prop pumps or koralias is what i would suggest. 700gph+ each probably.
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Old 12-20-2010, 10:57 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mr_X View Post
a couple seio prop pumps or koralias is what i would suggest. 700gph+ each probably.
What do you think of Coralife powerheads? I found one that does 750gph. I still need to stop by a marine shop I found to see what they stock.

I did make some progress. The tank was painted and put on the stand. Cleaned out the 65g tank and the 20g tank. Working on cutting acrylic baffles today and tomorrow. I'm hoping to get my plumbing sorted out today or tomorrow. I'd really like to get the tank filled with water and everything operating before Christmas.

I've attached my 20g long sump setup as well.
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Old 12-20-2010, 11:28 AM   #10
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if u are planning all the tank running before christmas, u might achieve that but if u are planning to have it run together with the fishes,i dont think thats a good idea....u need to cycle the tank before add any live stock in that tank....
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Old 12-20-2010, 11:30 AM   #11
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Definitely not planning for anything living in the tank by Christmas. Just trying to get some saltwater circulating Once the water is up to temp and salinity is right I'll add live rock (around 100lbs) and about 90lbs of Aragamax sand.
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Old 12-20-2010, 11:39 AM   #12
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JMO....u can add LR and Aragamax sand while circulating the water.....why u need to add it after..??? u can add the LR then pour the sand.....after that fill the tank with water and let it circulate/water cycle for a while.....i think that is better.....
just my 2cents...
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Old 12-20-2010, 11:49 AM   #13
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Well the live rock has been cured and is in a tote with water right now so I want to keep the rock in water as much as possible right? That way it minimized die off? I'd like to add the rock and sand as soon as the tank is filled but since I'm getting it from a friend it won't happen that quick. It'll take a little planning to get live rock moved from their place to my place.

Not to mention I need to make the water with the RO unit which is going to take a little time. I'm going to get the tank going and filled and when I know it's ready then I'll organize the rock movement.
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Old 12-20-2010, 12:55 PM   #14
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i haven't tried the coralife power heads yet. they seem comparable to koralias.
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Old 12-20-2010, 04:56 PM   #15
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If the rock is in totes, just keep it at temp and have a small powerhead in there for circulation as if you were curing it. How long will it be in the totes before your tank is ready for it?
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Old 12-20-2010, 05:20 PM   #16
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I think it has been in a tote for quite some time actually. My friend got the rock out of a running aquarium but it had some bad algae on it. I guess she put it in the tote with a heater and powerhead. It's been like that for probably a month or so and the algae is gone now.

I plan on using this cured rock and a few pieces from their active tank as well.
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Old 12-22-2010, 04:22 PM   #17
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Well I'm hoping to finish up my plumbing tonight and start adding water to the main tank. I won't have enough water to overflow into the sump until tomorrow but that's ok since I'll need to let the silicone cure in my sump anyhow.

What is a good amount of live rock to start a tank with? I'm not sure I'll be able to get the cured rock from my friends right away. I will have to wait until after the new year but since I've made this progress and will have the tank filled I'd like to get some rock in there to use for base rock and get the sand in there. Will 40lbs of live rock be enough surface to house bacteria for a cycle? Then I can add in the additional cured rock and some live rock after the new year?
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Old 12-22-2010, 11:28 PM   #18
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Overflow and return bulks are finally plumbed.





No sump yet so pieces mocked up in place.







Ballast wired up with (4) 30" VHO bulbs. (2) say actinic and (2) say super actinic. A little much blue for me.

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Old 12-23-2010, 12:52 AM   #19
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looking pretty good, still cant wait to see this come together
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Old 12-23-2010, 06:48 AM   #20
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yeah, i would add at least 1 daylight lamp, probably 2.
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