View Full Version : Jdack's 40g Breeder Reef

03/31/2017, 05:01 PM
So here i will keep a log of my Tank progression, for myself and others. Feel free to comment!

Tests are with refractometer, and API Saltwater Kit
Equipment =
40g Breeder Tank
Approx 70 pounds of Dry Rock from BRS - 50 reef saver rock, 20 tonga shelf (I ordered 45/15, they are awesome)
3 powerheads rated at 3000 L/h (should be 792 gph, but they are cheap, dont think they put that out) all three in tank for now will pull one out after i get my Overflow)
1 - 250w heater, keeps temp at 78 without trouble
4 ft 2 bar T8 Light atm, just for viewing when i feel like staring at empty rocks, lol.

3/30/17 Day One

Aquascape complete :dance: :hammer:
Salt added - 1.024 SG
Temp= 78
PH - 7.8-8.0
Ammonia/NO3/NO4 = 0/0/0
Water warming up and aging overnight

3/31/17 Day Two
Topped water level off - about 1/2-1 gal (overnight evaperation)
Estimated Daily evaporation is 1-2 gal now.
Ammonia=0.25-0.75 ppm :bounce3:
Important to note that nothing was added to start cycle, in ways of ammonia. (for now, on Thursday i will be ordering Red Seas Reef Mature Kit) some rock has a bit of organics on it, so that is where ammonia is starting from = perfect!

Plans for near future = Sump/skimmer/overflow box/ KH tester/Return pump/Plumbing/reef mature kit. All this will be ordered on thursday night when i get paid.

Pictures coming after they get sent from phone.
Once pictures are up, Please comment on the aquascape, i feel it looks great, but i fear it might be a bit crowded.

03/31/2017, 06:19 PM
Added 3 small (under 1 inch) pieces of shrimp. 3/31/17 5:19 pm

03/31/2017, 06:28 PM

Inserted Links instead of image as they come through HUGE if i embed

03/31/2017, 11:14 PM

04/01/2017, 01:22 AM
I've been running a 40 gallon breeder reef as well :). They are fun.
I do suggest one thing through. open your rock work some so that you can have swimming room for the fish and growing room for corals. It doesn't seem like you'll need it now, I know, but you will in a few months. Remember, you don't have to use all the rock they sent you. You can save it, or use it later.

04/01/2017, 06:48 AM
Ya, ive been thinking that today as well. will be atleast a month, maybe 2, before i put fish/corals in, so ill be playing with the placement. What would you suggest is better looking, channels between rocks, open space, or caves?

04/02/2017, 12:39 AM
Same paramaters today. 4/1/17

Plans finalized for next installment.

Going with cpr overflow 100 box, as i dont feel like drilling this tank. the upgrade tank i will, which will be about a year. my main goal in this time frame is to build up substantial live rock, and crabs and snails with macro algea on em.

Crystal Trigger 30 sump, i forsee this sump lasting through this tank, and atleast the next one.

Sicce 3.0 714 gph pump. chosen for its ideal head pressure,will still be 550-650 at my 4 feet, and relative silence.

Skimmer will come in 3 weeks when i get paid again, as the above and below mentioned drained my non bill moneys, figured i should be fine, cycle will prob still be going at that time. so far i still havent spiked nitrite, let alone nitrate.

Minor purchases is 200 gallons of salt mix, no more 25 gallon bags.

........ SAAAAANNDD... I dont know how people do bare bottom, im only curing my rock, and i hate walking into my room and seeing no sand.. lol. Going to try 20lbs, with the amount of rock i have, should work. not trying for a deep sand bed, reef sand bed calc suggested 36 lbs of the oolite, but i have a lot of surface covered by rock.

Ratchet clamps, female thread to barb, for the bulkhead, braided vinyl tubing, for sound reduction, with flex, but kink resistance.

CPR's Return Jet

And thread Tape.

My biggest purchase List since my very first tank years ago. Im STOKED :eek1::hammer:

Rock circled has been designated as a sump rock. Others might go as well, its just in there to continue cycling till sump gets here.

I feel this arrangement opens the tank up, allows for multiple areas to hide, and swim, and plenty of different heights to grow out a few corals, maybe anemonee down the line. plus, under the shel will look damn awesome with a small layer of sand!


04/02/2017, 04:16 AM
that could be a nice little base/stacker rock ;) could make another cove or stack on that side. love the cove on the right. did u shape it with a chisel?

04/02/2017, 10:46 AM
no, i wish i could say i chiseled it out over hours, but its a piece of tonga shelf, about 18". and ya, it could be a base, in fact it WAS the base rock for the left side, but there was just too much rock on that side, not enough swimming room. pretty sure im going to use it in my refugium section when i get the sump. I want to try to get a decent pod colony going so when i move up to my 90 or 120 i can get me a mandy

04/02/2017, 10:51 AM
Honestly, my plans are to just hone my testing regeme, and get used to the more advanced equipment that i havent used too much, and when i move in that 6-12 month time frame, get a 120 or bigger, and use the 40g as a refugium, full DSB, Tons of rock, macro algea, plumbed in after my sump.

Like so ---

120 DT to sump to refugium to smaller sump back to DT

04/02/2017, 10:59 AM
Has anyone used the trigger sumps? is it worth the money, or should i just find an oldish aquarium and get some glass baffles made and silicon them myself?

Any personal experiences, or opinions?

04/02/2017, 11:02 AM
Oh, and sand choices, i want the possibility of sand sifters and burrowers, so i was reading up on oolite. Any advice, opinions, gripes, anything, on the sand and how easy it is to blow around? Once i get my sump, overflow, and what not, i plan to remove 2 of my power heads, as ill have the return jet pumping 700gph, overflow sucking that out, and 1 powerhead ruffly doing the same.

04/03/2017, 09:59 AM
So the tank upgrade is happening on Friday. I found a 90 gal flatback hex with stand, canopy, lights, skimmer, sump, pumps, heaters, rock, sand, and a pair of mated clowns. Everything I needed ATM, and more, for WAY LESS than I was about to spend on just a sump and plumbing.


04/04/2017, 08:19 AM
New tank dimensions will be 48 long 18 wide and 25 high. Ill be able to do much more with the rock i have, in addition to the rock thats coming with it. Pictures of the empty tank coming after work.

04/06/2017, 01:58 AM
Update =

Tank has cycling parameters, ammonia despiked, nitrates started raising. 50% water change, and added some live rubble to the tank. Before water change after despike, i was at 0.5 ammonia, 5 - 10 ppm nitrate, after water change ended up being somewhere around .25 ammonia, and 5 nitrate. will be keeping this tank till i have the 90 positioned, and then will be aquascaping it. will have the clowns in a 20 gallon till its done. The 90 comes with 120 pounds of sand from the tank, and around 100 LR. which means i have 120 pounds of sand, and 170 pounds of live rock to play around with and get something great, with lots of rubble for the fuge. And extra for the 20, and 40.

04/06/2017, 02:00 AM
Front FTShttps://image.ibb.co/ciP8Aa/3561.jpg
Side View ( Close to where i will be most of the time im home ( I rent a room)

04/06/2017, 02:03 AM

04/08/2017, 08:07 PM
Ok so ill update for a few, DID NOT have time to take pictures on set up. I Had one rather large fish that the guy i bought the tank from pretty much shoved my way. I had no idea he was coming home with me, and i almost said no. Im glad i didnt becuase i never would have got one otherwise, but hes one of the coolest acting, lookin fish i could have hoped for.

Pics will be up today, Please excuse my lack of aquascaping, getting the fish into the water was more paramount. I do have plans for it, I have my 40 breeder i will use as a temporary home for them for a week to get the scape done properly.

So additions i didnt expect :
T5 HO 6 lamp with LEDs. Aqualife timer was busted, i re wired it to by pass the timer, ended up just meticulously following the wires, ended up bypassing the whole relay board. result is all lights, and fans work, controllable from an external timer. Not bad for a free light.

2 Skimmers, one a triple pass berlin, not sure about this thing, i cant get it to work right, water "surges", opted out to just scrap it or sell it for cheap. 1 HoB small skimmer, also not really worth it. But, options never hurt, as i didnt pay for this extra stuff.
Salt mix, about 130 gallons worth. Lots of test stuff, most i already had. Test tubes and vials and syringes are useful to have in a drawer. TONS of food, like 15 packs of hikari, various sorts and sizes.

UV sterilizer, one that actually has a size, and a ballast. May or may not work, havent tried it yet. Effective? Worth it? feel free to comment.

Wet / Dry conversion to the sump ( actually think the sump was made with it, so i opted for that as i dont have a working skimmer. May just turn it into a refugium in a few checks, plan on doing a recirculating skimmer, as i want to hard plumb this tank too.

Did i mention Live Rock? Tons, and Tons! well, not in weight! lol. Id estimate about 100 lb's of cycled live rock, about 4 years old ( i think its more like 1 from the looks of it, unless he NEVER introduced ANYTHING with Coralline on it)

An RO/DI unit, off Name, super slow, a bit leaky. Planning on hooking it up outside, feeding into a Brute Can, using that as my mixing station, then pumping it through my window for water changes.

An ATO. Double Float valve system, possibly home made. Im currently testing this, works efficiently so far. Im not dosing kalk, and keeping just enough in the bucket so it doesnt run dry, or overfill my sump.

2 Clowns, he said mated pair, but idk bout that, dont have a clue as how to tell. they do not bicker, or nip at each other, and swim rather close all the time, so atleast theyre friendly. One is about 3 inches, the other is about 2-2.5 inch. A great big 4 year old lionfish! Not aggressive towards the clowns at all, but apparently he has eaten a damsel before. I want to make the 40b into his tank alone till i can get him his own 60g.

I came home with boxes of stuff, so im sure i missed a lot.

Tanks Params =

Saline = 1.025
Ammonia = under 0.25, but not 0. Hoping with his cycled live rock, my fresh rock will colonize faster
Nitrite - 0
Nitrate= 15 - Preping water tonight for a water change in the morning, doing a 30% change, and another in 2 days
New Calcium, and Alkaliinity Test coming tomorrow

04/13/2017, 01:55 PM
nitrates and phosphates are high 4-5 days after water change, commencing another water change. 30 gals of sw is being mixed right now. tested for nitrates last night, came back zero, still waiting for my ro/di in the mail.

nitrate = 60
phosphate = ~5
calcium = 360
alkalinity is 10

if anyone is reading these, does coralline algea need light to grow? ive got my t5 bank on for only around 5 hours currently, so i dont start an algea break out

04/13/2017, 01:55 PM
source water was tested for nitrates and came back zero**