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Jay's 5.5 Pico


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#1
JayPagi

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Hello folks,

So I've been planning it for a while and here is.

Equipment

Standard 5.5 Gal AGA Modified to AIO
Maxi-Jet 400
Maxi-Jet 600
Hydor 25w Heater
Custom LED Fixture (3 x Cree RB, 3 x Cree White)
6lbs Live Fiji
3lbs Live Sand

Livestok

2 x Porcelain Crabs
1 x Blue Hermit
3 x Astrea Snails
1 x Yellowtail Damselfish aka. SPUNK... RIP

Corals

Sebae Anemone
Green Star Polyps
Ricordea
Duncan Coral
Zoanthids

Current FTS: Oct-1-2011
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Notes

LED's on order so I have this temp desk lamp set up right now.

It's nothing grand yet but it's a start for me in the salt water world that fits my budget.

My rock was added on March-7-2011 and the cycle begins...

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Edited by JayPagi, 04 December 2011 - 08:09 PM.


#2
echopiece

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Very nice so far! Do you have any more pics of how you made the rear chambers? Any plans for carbon or chaeto? I started out with a mj-400 and then went to an ehiem compact 600 (160 gph).

#3
JayPagi

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Very nice so far! Do you have any more pics of how you made the rear chambers?

Thanks...I do yes but it is very similar to the design of your tank... basically tried to copy sandeeps original design.

Any plans for carbon or chaeto?

Chaeto yes once my cycle is complete.
Does carbon just aid in polishing the water? It's an option I'm still considering.

I started out with a mj-400 and then went to an ehiem compact 600 (160 gph).

Did this upgrade provide alot more flow? I'm worried because I went with a fine sand base and I don't want sand blowing around everywhere.

#4
echopiece

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With such a small volume of water and no skimmer, I feel the carbon helps a lot. I use the small 5 oz ($10) of chemi-pure elite, and change it religiously every 2 months. It aids in removing excess phosphates, and does polish the water!

Yes, the flow was increased quite a bit. I had the exact same setup you have when I first started. But over time even with the powerhead pointed up, It wouldnt break the surface for better gas exchange. I upped the gph output and installed some 1/2" pipe near the surface. While breaking the surface of the water, it still provides great flow in the tank! I have somewhat fine sand as well, and it hasnt been issue. The reason I went with the compact 600 was to have the adjustable flow. However, it is has been full open ever since :)

What are your stocking plans? And how soon until you get your light setup?

#5
JayPagi

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Yes, the flow was increased quite a bit. I had the exact same setup you have when I first started. But over time even with the powerhead pointed up, It wouldnt break the surface for better gas exchange. I upped the gph output and installed some 1/2" pipe near the surface. While breaking the surface of the water, it still provides great flow in the tank! I have somewhat fine sand as well, and it hasnt been issue. The reason I went with the compact 600 was to have the adjustable flow. However, it is has been full open ever since :)

I see your point... I noticed that I don't get much surface break either; maybe I will create a mod like yours but use the same maxi 400.

What are your stocking plans?

Zoa's, Softies, etc... maybe a shrimp or crab. I haven't given it much thought yet as I'm still learning and I have a move coming later this year.

And how soon until you get your light setup?

Hopefully this week or next. I purchased this system from Rapid LED... what kind of coral life do you think it can support? I plan on mounting the LED's fairly close together in a circle pattern... I realize this may create "dark spots".
http://www.rapidled....Yourself/Detail

Edited by JayPagi, 10 March 2011 - 11:58 AM.


#6
echopiece

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I am no LED expert by any means, but with those CREE led's you should be able to keep some higher light corals. Maybe someone else will chime in on that?

Probably not an issue yet, but what do you have for temp control. Are you manually topping off fresh water? If you ever want to setup a cheap automated top off system, send me a pm and I will walk you through that.

Cant wait to see this tank mature!

#7
.Newman.

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looking nice and clean.
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#8
Mr. Microscope

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Nice looking tank! I really like your rocks. You might want to find a way to move that smaller rock away from the glass so that you can clean it easier.

Have you found any hitchhikers yet?
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#9
JayPagi

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Probably not an issue yet, but what do you have for temp control. Are you manually topping off fresh water? If you ever want to setup a cheap automated top off system, send me a pm and I will walk you through that.

Currently using the Hydor Theo 25w heater it seems to be working well and the temp is holding fairly steady at 77... 78 with the light on... what temp does everyone else try to achieve? Once the summer arrives temp control might be an issue. Currently using RO to top off about every 3 days I have a glass cover so it doesn't seem to evap very much but an ATO is something I may add later on.

Nice looking tank! I really like your rocks. You might want to find a way to move that smaller rock away from the glass so that you can clean it easier.

Thanks... I have been thinking of a solution for that problem; but because the rocks are actually touching at the base right now there isn't much I can do. I may have to search for a special scrubber or break one of the rocks.

Have you found any hitchhikers yet?

I did... there are a few little feather dusters and I mean little. I also found a small snail beige in color with red spots. I will try to find it again later to snap a pic but it's really small.

#10
echopiece

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Currently using the Hydor Theo 25w heater it seems to be working well and the temp is holding fairly steady at 77... 78 with the light on... what temp does everyone else try to achieve?

You mostly want to keep the temp consistent, trying to maintain a temp swing no greater than 2 degrees a day. Temps can range anywhere from 76-82 degrees F. If you think you can maintain that 77 all summer then go for it. If not, turn the heater up to maintain that 2 degree swing. You'll just have to play with it when the temps get warmer.

#11
JayPagi

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Week 1

Salinity: 1.024
PH: 8.0
Ammonia: 0.20ppm
Nitrite: <0.3ppm

The cycle process seems to be on its way I will keep checking weekly.

Still waiting on LED's...

One of a few dusters on my rock.

Posted Image

Edited by JayPagi, 03 October 2011 - 12:50 PM.


#12
.Newman.

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looks good.
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#13
JayPagi

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So I finally got my LED light up and running... it looks awesome!

I will be posting some pics ASAP.

I do have a concern regarding my photo period to me it seems long as the tank is cycling. The room the tank is in gets partial sunlight in the morning around 9AM my LED's turn on at noon and run until 9:15pm. No real direct sunlight but the room is light.

What do you think?

#14
Drift Monkey

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So I finally got my LED light up and running... it looks awesome!

I will be posting some pics ASAP.

I do have a concern regarding my photo period to me it seems long as the tank is cycling. The room the tank is in gets partial sunlight in the morning around 9AM my LED's turn on at noon and run until 9:15pm. No real direct sunlight but the room is light.

What do you think?

Sweet! Pics asap!

If you have any photosynthetic hitchhikers you wanna keep, I'd leave the light on for maybe 8-10 hours while cycling...if not...you can cut it down more to avoid algae blooms.

#15
JayPagi

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New FTS with new LED's... concerned the light might be a little too bright.

There is something growing in the middle of the first picture... does anyone know what it is?

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Edited by JayPagi, 03 October 2011 - 12:52 PM.


#16
PakRX8

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Very clean! I love it so far!
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#17
JayPagi

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Very clean! I love it so far!


Thanks... I have been watching your tank closely its easily one of the nicest ones on Nano-Reef! Congrats!

#18
Drift Monkey

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The rocks look awesome under the LEDs. Good work!

#19
peytonk

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awesome tank, your lighting looks great!

#20
PakRX8

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Thanks... I have been watching your tank closely its easily one of the nicest ones on Nano-Reef! Congrats!



Thanks for the awesome compliment!

How do you like the LEDs? Can you vary the color temperature on them since it was a DIY kit?
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#21
JayPagi

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How do you like the LEDs? Can you vary the color temperature on them since it was a DIY kit?

The LED's are amazing but it did take a day or two to get used to them. Unfortunately it's not a dimmable driver but I'm pretty satisfied right now with the color temp. This is my first tank and I didn't want to over complicate things.

Here are my parameters for...

Week 2

Salinity: 1.024
PH: 8.0
Ammonia: 0.20ppm
Nitrite: <0.3ppm

Pretty much the same as last week.

Edited by JayPagi, 25 March 2011 - 09:22 AM.


#22
PakRX8

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The LED's are amazing but it did take a day or two to get used to them. Unfortunately it's not a dimmable driver but I'm pretty satisfied right now with the color temp. This is my first tank and I didn't want to over complicate things.


I felt similar after I initially switched over from MH. I agree with you on not complicating things on the first tank. It's much better to stick to the KISS method.

Have you figured out how to get more surface agitation? I know there was some prior discussion about using a different pump or modifying the existing one.

Should only be a couple more weeks before the cycle is over hopefully. What are you planning on adding first?

Edited by PakRX8, 25 March 2011 - 10:59 AM.

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#23
echopiece

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Looking good! Would love to see a shot of that new LED fixture!

#24
JayPagi

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Have you figured out how to get more surface agitation? I know there was some prior discussion about using a different pump or modifying the existing one.

I ended up pointing the stock outlet up a bit higher and I'm getting better agitation now. So for the time being I won't be doing anything.

What are you planning on adding first?

Well a CUC first... after that I'm really not to sure. I will be quite selective. Also I'm afraid of adding too much as I have a move to make later this year... not to far just a 10 minute drive.

Looking good! Would love to see a shot of that new LED fixture!

I will shoot some pics of my lights and fuge area for you this week.

Thanks for the support guys. :D

#25
JayPagi

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So as promised here are some pics of the equipment!

Here is my fuge area with media basket (Holding LR right now... cheato to come)

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Here is my LED set up which includes a small 4" square heat sink; wrapped with a custom black acrylic box. There are tabs inside the acrylic shell that holds the heat sink off the tank top.

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I left the acrylic shell untouched but I'm now thinking i will sand and paint it with the black krylon i used on the tank. Only because there are some krazy glue spots showing and some uneven corners.

Let me know what you think.

Edited by JayPagi, 03 October 2011 - 12:54 PM.