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Old 08/22/2006, 03:25 PM   #1
dcombs44
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My 55 gallon reef project

I've seen that some people make threads showing how their tanks progress during the setup process, so i figured I'd make one of my own.
I started with a 29 gallon reef setup, and I'm getting ready to upgrade to a 55 gallon (all that I can afford)........so here are some pictures and specs on my setup.

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As far as livestock, I have a tomato clown, a yellow tang, a red serpent star, green brain, various mushrooms, green buttons, green star polyps, and about 60 lbs of live rock. All of which are being babysat until my system is up and running.

55 gallon drilled perfecto aquarium, 29 gallon custom sump/fuge, and perfecto stand. Too lazy to build my own stand.



All-glass megaflow corner overflow



This is a pic of hopefully all that will be seen as far as plumbing work in the display tank. The return from the sump and then a "closed loop" setup that I'll talk more about in a minute.



Here is the plumbing work for the closed loop. I actually just put a mag drive 7 in the overflow chamber and plumbed it over the top of the tank to the opposite corner to try and increase and even out the flow. I painted the back of the tank using some good old krylon.



The canopy is also made by perfecto, but fitted for a 75 gallon. I wanted to put the reflectors in the direction shown so i ordered the bigger canopy. I plan to hang this over the tank from the ceiling. It's fitted with 2 250 watt MH ballasts that will fire 14k hamilton bulbs. I also added a 40 watt shop light ballast just for a little color supplement if the 14k bulbs make the tank too blue. I'll probably put a 10k or a 50/50 in that socket.



My Euroreef CS-80 Protein Skimmer. I've heard good things about this company, but anything has to be better than my old seaclone. This of course will go in the center chamber of my sump.



Here are some odds and ends. 60 lbs. of CaribSea Aragomax for substrate, 10 lbs. of Ecosystem Miracle Mud for my sump (I've had good luck with this product), and my sump return: QuietOne 6000 (1500 gph)


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Any comments or suggestions are greatly appreciated. I am moving this weekend, so I will begin my setup process and hopefully keep posting as the system comes together.


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Old 08/22/2006, 03:55 PM   #2
drinkhomebrew
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I am starting a 55 gallon also. Purchasing my lights tomorrow.


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Old 08/22/2006, 04:09 PM   #3
dcombs44
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good luck....what's your setup look like?


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Current Setup: 10 Gallon Skimmerless Zoanthid Tank
Lighting: Single 175 Watt Metal Halide (14,000 K Hamilton Lamp)
Filtration: 10 gallon sump/refugium and Phosban Reactor
Return: Mag Drive 700
Controller: ReefKeeper Lite (Basic Version)
Circulation: TBD
Age of System: Build is in Progress
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Old 08/22/2006, 05:00 PM   #4
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Looks like good gear, Might want to calm that return pump down a bit.


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Current Tank Info: 125 mixed reef 110 lbs LR, 1x250watt XM 20K MH 2x175watt XM 20K MH on Magetics 2X96 watt actinic PC, 220 watt VHO actinic, 30 gallon refugium, closed loop system powered by Sequence Dart MSX 200 skimmer 38 gallon sump, Oceansmotions squirt
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Old 08/22/2006, 05:05 PM   #5
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That's what some others have said. Ecosystem actually recommends quite a bit of flow through their sumps, and this is basically a DIY verison of an ecosystem. I think they recommend a flow rate of 1000-2000 gph. I know that's a lot of movement through the sump, and i did put a gate valve on the return just incase it needs turned down. What exactly is the reasoning for having less flow through a sump. Some have said skimmer performance and some have said microbubbles.


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Current Setup: 10 Gallon Skimmerless Zoanthid Tank
Lighting: Single 175 Watt Metal Halide (14,000 K Hamilton Lamp)
Filtration: 10 gallon sump/refugium and Phosban Reactor
Return: Mag Drive 700
Controller: ReefKeeper Lite (Basic Version)
Circulation: TBD
Age of System: Build is in Progress
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Old 08/22/2006, 06:33 PM   #6
drinkhomebrew
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Still planning a lot right now. I am in the process of refinishing the stand and hood. I am getting 2 175 watt MH and some LEDs for moon lights tomorrow. Skimmer is next on my list. I want to put a 29 gallon sump/ refuge in there. I havent measured anything to see what will fit. My goal is to be buying live rock by oct 1.


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Old 08/22/2006, 07:09 PM   #7
dcombs44
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Sounds good. The 29 gallon is extremely tight in my stand, but your custom stand may be better. I needed the extra volume so i went ahead and got the 29. You may consider a 30 gallon. 6 inches longer across the front and 2 inches shorter. May save you enough space for better maneuverability


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Current Setup: 10 Gallon Skimmerless Zoanthid Tank
Lighting: Single 175 Watt Metal Halide (14,000 K Hamilton Lamp)
Filtration: 10 gallon sump/refugium and Phosban Reactor
Return: Mag Drive 700
Controller: ReefKeeper Lite (Basic Version)
Circulation: TBD
Age of System: Build is in Progress
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Old 08/22/2006, 07:39 PM   #8
THEPHISHGUY
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I have a quiet one 6000 for a closed loop. You will be fine! They have more head loss then they claim imho. Lookin good so far!


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Old 08/22/2006, 08:07 PM   #9
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I have a 15(?) gallon sump,and a 7 gallon refugium.I have almost no room to stick my hands in the fuge.And i ran out of room to take the filter sock off without takeing down the whole sump,so still trying to figgure that out.


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Old 08/27/2006, 08:36 PM   #10
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I set the tank up today in my new apartment and attached all plumbing work, hoses, etc. The lights fired right up thanks to my handy wiring job. I should have some pictures up within the next couple of days. I'm wating on my RO/DI unit before I go any farther.


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Current Setup: 10 Gallon Skimmerless Zoanthid Tank
Lighting: Single 175 Watt Metal Halide (14,000 K Hamilton Lamp)
Filtration: 10 gallon sump/refugium and Phosban Reactor
Return: Mag Drive 700
Controller: ReefKeeper Lite (Basic Version)
Circulation: TBD
Age of System: Build is in Progress
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Old 08/28/2006, 02:20 AM   #11
Stirfry001
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what kind of protein skimmer do you have? If you have one


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Old 08/28/2006, 08:53 AM   #12
dcombs44
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Euroreef cs-80.......look at the first post..there's a picture of it in the box....I'll get one on here with it assembled


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Current Setup: 10 Gallon Skimmerless Zoanthid Tank
Lighting: Single 175 Watt Metal Halide (14,000 K Hamilton Lamp)
Filtration: 10 gallon sump/refugium and Phosban Reactor
Return: Mag Drive 700
Controller: ReefKeeper Lite (Basic Version)
Circulation: TBD
Age of System: Build is in Progress
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Old 09/01/2006, 02:15 PM   #13
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RO/DI unit arrived, but refractometer is on back order. I'll be back in my apartment on Sunday to hopefully start filling containers to mix the salt water.....yaaaaaaaayyy!!!


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Current Setup: 10 Gallon Skimmerless Zoanthid Tank
Lighting: Single 175 Watt Metal Halide (14,000 K Hamilton Lamp)
Filtration: 10 gallon sump/refugium and Phosban Reactor
Return: Mag Drive 700
Controller: ReefKeeper Lite (Basic Version)
Circulation: TBD
Age of System: Build is in Progress
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Old 09/04/2006, 07:49 PM   #14
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Progress, progress, progress

I've got everything set up, I opened my RO/DI unit, and it had a broken fitting, so I ran to the hardware store and.............NOTHING. So I called the company, and they are sending one to me. Here are a couple of pics of the setup system and a picture of the sump from the back. I used shepard's hooks to hang the canopy.





I went ahead and put the substrate in the display and the sump. I left enough space behind the tank in the corner so I could get behind it to work. I also turned the sump sideways due to the height so I can remove the pump and skimmer easily


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Old 09/04/2006, 07:50 PM   #15
dcombs44
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As always, thoughts and suggestions are welcomed and appreciated.


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Current Setup: 10 Gallon Skimmerless Zoanthid Tank
Lighting: Single 175 Watt Metal Halide (14,000 K Hamilton Lamp)
Filtration: 10 gallon sump/refugium and Phosban Reactor
Return: Mag Drive 700
Controller: ReefKeeper Lite (Basic Version)
Circulation: TBD
Age of System: Build is in Progress
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Old 09/04/2006, 08:00 PM   #16
Farrmanchu
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So how much flow are you going to have in total? I'm using a 590GPH Return, and a SEIO 850 powerhead in my 55. I'm having trouble getting my Mushrooms to stay attached.


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Old 09/04/2006, 08:02 PM   #17
dcombs44
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Well, the return is 1500 and the mag is 700. So with no head loss, I'd run 2200, but I'm not sure kind of head loss I'll get on the return. Apparantly, QuietOne is notorious for head loss, so I'll have to see. I did put gate valves on each in case I need to turn them down. I can always just shut the magdrive off as well. It's a little bit of an experiment, and I'm very anxious to find out how it's going to work.


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Current Setup: 10 Gallon Skimmerless Zoanthid Tank
Lighting: Single 175 Watt Metal Halide (14,000 K Hamilton Lamp)
Filtration: 10 gallon sump/refugium and Phosban Reactor
Return: Mag Drive 700
Controller: ReefKeeper Lite (Basic Version)
Circulation: TBD
Age of System: Build is in Progress
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Old 09/04/2006, 08:04 PM   #18
dcombs44
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Both pumps will be split, so that may help break things up as well. I've seen people use more flow than me and have success, so maybe it's just the way that you have your pumps arranged and/or plumbed.


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Current Setup: 10 Gallon Skimmerless Zoanthid Tank
Lighting: Single 175 Watt Metal Halide (14,000 K Hamilton Lamp)
Filtration: 10 gallon sump/refugium and Phosban Reactor
Return: Mag Drive 700
Controller: ReefKeeper Lite (Basic Version)
Circulation: TBD
Age of System: Build is in Progress
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Old 09/05/2006, 07:39 PM   #19
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Well I rigged up the RO/DI unit to work until my new fitting comes in. I'm going to have to fill the tank about 18 gallons at a time though because I have no storage tank, just small jugs. Anyways, I'm still excited to make my own CLEAN water for my fishies.


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Current Setup: 10 Gallon Skimmerless Zoanthid Tank
Lighting: Single 175 Watt Metal Halide (14,000 K Hamilton Lamp)
Filtration: 10 gallon sump/refugium and Phosban Reactor
Return: Mag Drive 700
Controller: ReefKeeper Lite (Basic Version)
Circulation: TBD
Age of System: Build is in Progress
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Old 09/08/2006, 08:04 PM   #20
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I finished filling the tank today. I hope to put my live rock back in the water tomorrow to start the cycle. I'm having some microbubble issues as some have suggested. I'm hoping they calm down a little bit when the skimmer gets broken in. If not, I'm really not sure what I'll do. I don't want to have to turn the return pump down too much, because I do like the amount of flow I have. If anyone has any suggestions as to how to help dissipate the microbubbles, please give an opinion.


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Old 09/15/2006, 12:25 PM   #21
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Here's a couple of pics of my tank with a few pieces of my live rock in it. I should be getting some more partially cured rock to throw in it over the weekend. I guess I'll have to start worrying a bit more about water changes then. I have a few pieces of the good rock left, but the rest will be some good quality semi-cured rock. Any suggestions on water changes will this thing cycles. So far I've got a couple of stray striped mushrooms and a hermit crab that made the journey. I'm not sure how they'll fare when the new rock goes in though.







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Old 09/15/2006, 12:39 PM   #22
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Looks like a good start to me.


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Old 09/15/2006, 01:34 PM   #23
dcombs44
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Thanks....I definitely hope that my experience helps this tank start off better than my first.


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Current Setup: 10 Gallon Skimmerless Zoanthid Tank
Lighting: Single 175 Watt Metal Halide (14,000 K Hamilton Lamp)
Filtration: 10 gallon sump/refugium and Phosban Reactor
Return: Mag Drive 700
Controller: ReefKeeper Lite (Basic Version)
Circulation: TBD
Age of System: Build is in Progress
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Old 09/17/2006, 07:17 PM   #24
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Well, I picked up the rest of my rock as well as what I thought would be partially cured rock, but the new rock is pretty well totally cured. Here are some picks with the rock in the tank. I have a good idea of what I want to do with the aquascaping, but it's just somewhat put together/thrown in right now. If anybody has any suggestions on moving this stuff around, let me know. I will possibly need a few more pieces of rock, but I want to bring a stack down from the overflow and then have a stack go up and back down into the opposite corner. I've got the general shape that I want, but I'm not sure I like the way it's arranged. Let me know your thoughts!






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Old 09/17/2006, 07:32 PM   #25
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I love the look of clean white sand. So much for those days! Lookin' good!


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