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Becact's Zeovit SPS Cadlights 39g Sig


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#1
becact

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Hi all!

I've had a ton of fun on NR, and in my time here, started with a biocube 14, progressed to a 90g, and also have a 2.5g AIO pico. I am moving to a one bedroom apartment in 6 weeks, and would like to step back into the world of nano reefing. Here is my 90g as of now:

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While the apartment is pretty large at 1000 sqft, and I have room for the 90, there are several reasons I am going back to nano reefing:

1) Energy efficiency. Right now I'm running 500w of light, and probably 100-200 more of various pumps. With my move to the cad 39, I plan to have 100w of light, and probably 50-100w of accessories. Major power savings! Not to mention the heat the large tank generates, prompting more work of the household A/C.

2) Maintenance. Lots of people say larger tanks are lower maintenance than nanos, but in today's world of efficiency and automation, that is BS! With the 90, all the in-tank maintenance has to be done standing on a chair, I have to mix and change 10g of water a week, and evaporation is 15g per week. I have to top up my 5 gallon ATO reservoir every 2 days, on average. With the nano, since I am going to be using T5, I am hoping that ATO reservoir will stay full for perhaps a week. That means I can even take a little vacation once in a while :). I really feel tethered to the 90 since it needs me every day, either for dosing or for reservoir top off.

3) Cost. While I'll probably lose money transferring over to the cad initially, I think I will save money in the long run. I will need to dose less two part, use less salt for water changes, and make less RO/DI. Also, the money saved on energy is real.

I'm also tired of the sump with the 90. I know most nano reefers that don't have sumps think they are really beneficial, and indeed they are, but there is a lot to be said about being able to do maintenance standing up ;). This is the primary reason I went for the signature. I am going to be using the cabinet space for my ATO reservoir and for the two part reservoirs.

I hope I don't sound like I really hate the 90, I don't! It's been a lot of fun, I just want a smaller system at this point. I went for the largest cadlights model to keep most of our fish with personalities, like the hawkfish and jawfish. The tank should give me some growing room too.

So, here's my plan:

I have the cad tank and stand already ordered. I got it from one of our sponsors, OceanReeflections, and Ken there is a great guy! One thing I really appreciated was the super fast response to e-mail, which is crucial when dealing with and online business, IMHO. As some of you know, this tank is an AIO like a biocube, and comes with a skimmer.

For lighting, I am going with the 24" 4 bulb ATI Sunpower. I am trying to source one right now, but will be ordering as soon as I do.

In the future, I want to automate two part dosing with one of those pumps that has the spinning part that pulls the liquid (forgot what they are called), but for now I think I'll be fine doing it by hand. I am also really considering a RKL for only $100, mostly just for heater insurance. There's not much else I need one for, to be honest. I am worried the $100 controller will turn into $500 after buying all the extra accessories I'd need to truly automate the system with it.

I'm thinking right now about how to transfer the 90g into the 39. Obviously, I can't transfer the whole thing! My goal is to have the 90 broken down and dry (with extra rocks and coral sold) by move out day, and the 39 setup. I'll have to break down the 39 to move it, of course, so I'm not going to spend a ton of time aquascaping. Here is my transfer plan, for now:

1) Remove frags from rocks of 90, place on sandbed.
2) Remove half the rocks from the 90, place in a large rubbermaid,
3) Scoop out sand from half the 90 (the side the jawfish isn't in), rinse once or twice in a 5g bucket, and add to the 39.
4) Pile some rocks in the 39
5) Add 10g of used water from the 90 to the 39 at this time as part of a water change, and top it off with 30g of freshly made saltwater.
6) Keep the 90 running as is, and 39 running as is for a few days.
7) Sell the remainder of rock, sand, and frags I don't want from the 90 to local reefers.
8) Add frags to 39, acclimate to light, and move the vortech at this time.
9) when all the rock is out of the 90, trap and transfer the fish.
10) drain the 90 and store it!

Any advice on this?

Thanks for reading my thread! I know it will get interesting once the tank arrives!

Edited by becact, 22 January 2010 - 02:01 PM.

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#2
becact

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I am thinking of going bare bottom on this one... what do you guys think? I'd have to get rid of the jawfish, and the girlfriend would not be happy about that! But I am really liking the idea of very high levels of flow.

edit: the more I research bare bottom, the more I realize it is not as easy as I thought! Apparently without the sand bed, nitrates will rise significantly if you simply transfer the rock from a SB system to a BB system. Also, the rocks will "shed" detritus for months unless you "cook" them first.

After reading up on cooking rocks, I love the idea. I will be doing this if I go BB or not. It doesn't involve heat, instead you simple re-cure the rocks in a completely dark environment, swishing the rocks in clean water every few days. The lack of lights kills of all algae, and the non-photosynthetic bacteria does its work "eating" the dead algae and "pooping" out detritus, which is what you remove by swishing every few days. You keep cooking them until nothing comes off when you swish, which can take months. BUT- the advantage is that you start with completely clean, cured rock. No nuisance algae to worry about. I am not ashamed to admit I am having a bit of a hair algae problem, and have some cyano, even though my water is clean in the 90. Cooking will allow me to start over.

Apparently if you don't do this before going BB, all this happens in your tank (massive detritus build up), and you still have the nuisance algae to worry about.

The best part is, I can get started on this part right away. I need to go pick up some rubbermaids that will not bulge when full of water so I can fit their tops for darkness. It is going to take a ton of RO/DI and salt, though.

Edited by becact, 01 September 2009 - 08:14 AM.

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#3
got2envy

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Sounds like a good plan! BB is cool and I always say I will do a tank BB one day but I always end up adding sand lol I like gobies to much and the cool critters that live in the sand.
following along for the ride :D

#4
becact

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Thanks!

I got the tank the other day, it's a beauty. I think I am going to cook the rocks from my 90 that I will be using in this one, just to kill off some turf algae that is present.
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#5
becact

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Not much to add to this boring blog right now. I removed all my corals from the rock of my 90, and have about half the rocks cooking.

I am still waiting on a new piece for my stand, as one of the wood pieces was damaged in shipment. When I get the stand together I am going to have to figure something out as far as a lighting stand goes for the ATI fixture.

I also experimented with bulbs in the ATI. When there is an Aquablue in there, it is too white for me. I think I am going to go with 2 Blueplus, 1 pure actinic, and either a third blueplus or a Fiji Purple. I am still a little undecided on the Fiji Purple bulb. It makes the tank look a shade of pinkish purple, and I am going for a dark blue kind of feel.
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#6
timdanger

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talking tops, what have you figured out so far? The best thing I've come across is the concept of a thin "frame" of transparent acrylic that can sort of float on the top of the glass, or maybe with little supports flush with the top of the glass, and with some kind of dense-but-not-too-dense mesh netting affixed to it (similar to the concept IUNKNOWN used in this thread (but maybe a little bit more polished - this one looks hurried).

any other ideas for designs, materials?

also, update your thread.

#7
becact

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I will probably use the concept of the DIY link in that thread you posted (window screen framing and clear netting). I need to figure out how I am going to mount my light before I commit to anything, though. If I need to mount the light from the sides of the glass somehow, then I can't use a total perimeter screening. I might not use any screen at all, even though i have a jawfish.

I move in two weeks so won't be setting the tank up until then. I have my rocks cooking away in the rubbermaid, away from light. They will only have cooked for 4 weeks, though, so I'm not sure how much good it will have done in the end. I will pick up a wire brush today to scrub down the turf algae on the rocks so the bacteria can get to work on the insides of the rocks.

I HAVE been reading a lot on the NeoZeo/ZeoVit methods. Basically these methods set your tank up to a ULNS (ultra low nutritional state) via bacterial means, and have you supplement in the needed nutrients for corals. ULNS is pretty hard to achieve in a nano, as you guys know. Zeo methods allow you to overfeed and still have ULNS. There is a lot to read, though. The PDF from Brightwell explaining the method is 28 pages long! If I do go this route, I will keep a detailed photo log in another thread, as I haven't really seen any good ones out there, especially for nanos.

I came across these methods first by searching about phosphate reactors, which led me to carbon (vodka) dosing, which led me to prodibio/zeovit methods. People have great success with these systems, but the downside is that it requires one to dose a lot of stuff daily, and it sets you up to be dependent on chemicals. However, it would let me keep my sand bed, eliminate algae, and get some really good color and growth from corals, as well as let me feed the fish daily while maintaining a nutrient state usually only enjoyed by bare-bottom large tanks with very efficient skimmers.

Edited by becact, 06 October 2009 - 08:46 AM.

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#8
Rehype

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I decided to run a full zeovit system on my cadlight. I was reading about it for the last few weeks and finally decided to go forward with it.So i ordered all of the additives as well as a custom made zeovit reactor that should fit in the back chamber of the cadlight. Ill be sure to document everything in my thread. GL with your setup. I would also rethink running your tank open topped if you have a jawfish. I can tell you from firsthand experience its not a good idea.

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#9
becact

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I may have to pick your brain on the Zeovit system once I get some time to figure it all out. Do you find the concentrations to be too high to measure precisely for our small tanks? One of the reasons I am leaning towards brightwell is its lower concentrations, which will make it easier to precisely measure for a nano.

I am leaning towards an external pump and reactor which I will keep in the stand. I have the signature, so no sump to take up space down there. I was thinking the Bulk Reef Supply media reactor would be perfect, and maybe a Quiet One pump (the ~300 gph one). The idea is to keep heat out of the water. Here's a sketch:

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Edited by becact, 11 December 2009 - 06:27 PM.

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#10
Rehype

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Do you find the concentrations to be too high to measure precisely for our small tanks? One of the reasons I am leaning towards brightwell is its lower concentrations, which will make it easier to precisely measure for a nano.

I am leaning towards an external pump and reactor which I will keep in the stand. I have the signature, so no sump to take up space down there. I was thinking the Bulk Reef Supply media reactor would be perfect, and maybe a Quiet One pump (the ~300 gph one). The idea is to keep heat out of the water. Here's a sketch:

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No because most of the dosings will only consist of one drop a day.

The media reactor sounds like a really good idea. Hoewever the only problem you will have is you have to shake the zeolites every day and with that particular reactor its not so easy to access the zeolites without making a mess.

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#11
becact

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Hype, have you seen the Sapphire nano reactor? It's a 2" tube and the whole thing is 11" high, and uses a 2w sicce pump that pushes a max 74gph:

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Taking the 39g sig to have about 30 gallons of water net, we should need around 0.2L of the zeovit stones. Taking the sapphire reactor's actual usable interior chamber to be 2" by 8", that gives a volume of 25.13 cubic inches = 0.412 liters. Perfect! And I'm sure the pump can be dialed down to the recommended 25 or so gph. Also, using only 2 watts, it would add virtually no heat to the water, and it's only $35!

That would be a lot simpler than my option above, be cheaper to operate, and you could probably even shake the stones with that rod you see that is normally used to pull out the contents of the chamber. If you only used half the chamber's space for the stones (0.2L), the top foam disk would be halfway down into the chamber, so you could pull the contents up and down like a piston.

PS: While reading this thread at zeovit.com, I saw your name in the members viewing this thread, lol:

http://zeovit.com/fo...ead.php?t=18109

Edited by becact, 06 October 2009 - 06:35 PM.

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#12
illuminano

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I love how thorough you're being in your research. Shows passion which is 90% of what i find carries me through the hard times in this hobby. I own the saphire reactor, works beautifully in my CAD lights 22. Just my 2 cents.
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#13
becact

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Thanks! This will be my fourth tank (plus a pico) in 8 months since starting this great hobby, so I hope to make this one as perfect as possible! Glad to hear you are happy with the sapphire reactor. Do you find it to be quiet?

Edited by becact, 06 October 2009 - 06:42 PM.

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#14
Rehype

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Hype, have you seen the Sapphire nano reactor? It's a 2" tube and the whole thing is 11" high, and uses a 2w sicce pump that pushes a max 74gph:

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Taking the 39g sig to have about 30 gallons of water net, we should need around 0.2L of the zeovit stones. Taking the sapphire reactor's actual usable interior chamber to be 2" by 8", that gives a volume of 25.13 cubic inches = 0.412 liters. Perfect! And I'm sure the pump can be dialed down to the recommended 25 or so gph. Also, using only 2 watts, it would add virtually no heat to the water, and it's only $35!

That would be a lot simpler than my option above, be cheaper to operate, and you could probably even shake the stones with that rod you see that is normally used to pull out the contents of the chamber. If you only used half the chamber's space for the stones (0.2L), the top foam disk would be halfway down into the chamber, so you could pull the contents up and down like a piston.

PS: While reading this thread at zeovit.com, I saw your name in the members viewing this thread, lol:

http://zeovit.com/fo...ead.php?t=18109



That looks like a great option!Let me know if you buy it.
LOL im always looking for other nano reefers trying out zeovit

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#15
becact

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I think I am going to place my order right now. For only $35 it is worth a shot, and if I decide to not go zeovit, I can still use it for phosphate media or carbon in the future.
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#16
timdanger

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re: tops, i actually talked to eddie at cadlights on the phone yesterday (about several things), and he said that they were going to begin selling tempered glass tops (he said regular glass would break, acrylic would melt so close to a halide) around November 20. He said they would be about $20, which in my mind is very affordable. only question is how much heat you'll end up locking into the system by going with the full glass top. anyway, just FYI.

thanks for updating your thread. :D

#17
Rehype

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only question is how much heat you'll end up locking into the system by going with the full glass top. a


Quite a bit for the record. Im running it closed top and it keeps heat a bit too well. Which is great in the winter months but in the summer you will have to invest in a chiller.

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#18
becact

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My cad 39 came with a hinged glass top, but I won't be using it. I'll be making something out of 1/4" clear netting, if I can find the material...
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#19
becact

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I am still hemming and hawing over if I should go zeovit or not. As I read more it seems the same effects may be achieved in other ways. Plus some of the dosages are going to be a pain. For example, many of the dosages read like "1 drop per 25 gallons," which is great for a 125g tank or a 300g, but on a ~30-35g net tank, it will be hard to dose accurately.

I am reading up on alternatives. I am considering just using phosphate remover in the reactor, and dosing bacteria and carbon in other ways. Perhaps with vodka and brightwell's bacteria product, or perhaps brightwell's carbon source and bacteria product, or perhaps zeovit's carbon source and bacteria product, or a mix of any of the above! I have a lot of reading to do :wacko:. I think perhaps first I will simply get the system up and running with the skimmer and GFO, then start to consider dosing stuff.

I also followed Rehype's lead and got the Euro-Reef skimmer :bowdown:. He is making a custom one for me with two pump positions to tune the product (mine will be a one pump model). So I will be able to adjust skimmer height in the water, effluent release rate (via their valve on the bottom), and pump position. That should be plenty of tunability!

I have a super busy week at school next week, but next weekend I move to my new place, so should be able to start making some concrete plans on how I want to hang my light fixture. I already know how I want to do it, I just don't know if I want it to swing out to the left or right for tank maintenance.
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#20
becact

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OK, need help with choosing the substrate! All the fine grain stuff is out, because I want to be able to use most of my MP40w in this tank for some killer flow. For this reason I am leaning towards the larger sized stuff. All these are Caribsea dry sand and I borrowed the photos from MarineDepot (whom I will be buying from):

1) Special Grade Reef. 1.25-1.95mm. The old classic that a lot of people use:

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2) Super Reef Sand. This is the same stuff as above but with some shell pieces and such in it. It would be good for the jawfish, I think:

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3) Bermuda Pink. 2-4mm. This size would afford me some awesome flow. But I'm not sure the jawfish would like it. I could always build a jawfish house from PVC and a barnacle.

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Help me decide! I want to place my order today.
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#21
Rehype

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Option number 2 would be best suited for the jawfish and if you plan to use the mp40.

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#22
becact

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I went to Caribsea's site, and the grain size of the substrate with the shells in it goes down to 0.5mm, whereas the standard reef grade only goes down to 1.0mm, on average. I figure after rinsing, the reef grade should provide an overall larger average grain size, without the "gravel" look of the larger sized sand above. Plus I can get a good deal locally on the reef grade and skip the $hipping.

My jawfish usually collects dwarf ceriths throughout the day to reinforce his entrance, but of course they crawl away after a while! I wonder if he knows what is going on, lol. Over time he has managed to collect most of the available rubble and empty shells in my 90g for his hole, so I am hoping that he will be industrious enough to manage without the shell pieces.
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#23
PurpleUP

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Hey there! Sent you a PM but your mailbox is FULL ;)
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t2: ADA Tank: 25G Rimless CUBE .:. Photo Journal (RETIRED Dec '10 but trying to restore pics!)
t3: 28G JBJ LED Coming Soon!

#24
becact

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Hey there! Sent you a PM but your mailbox is FULL ;)


Yikes! They are cleaned out now :)
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#25
becact

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I have been reading up on acid baths for live rock, and I am going to do it. One uses HCl in solution with water to dissolve the top layer of the calcium carbonate live rock (where the stored phosphates are) according to this equation:

CaCO3 + 2HCl -> CaCl2 + CO2 + H2O

I have been researching this a lot and will probably be making a separate thread to detail this process in... detail.

I feel I should do this since my rocks mostly come from a very old tank, and are just going to leech phosphates and nitrates back into my new clean tank. Cooking (what I am doing now) would achieve the same thing, but it will take several more weeks, which I do not have. I don't mind losing all the life on the rocks, because I am going to be seeding the Zeovit bacterial strains.

Also, doing this will get me to ULNS very quickly, which I need to do to get the benefits of the Zeovit system.
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