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Innovative Marine Aquariums

How to setup Biocube 14. Skimmer or Fuge?


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I'm having trouble deciding whether to setup my new Biocube 14 with the refugium mod that most people do for chamber 2, or whether i should invest in the sapphire nanoskimmer NC12/BC14 and drop that in the 2nd chamber. Does anyone have this skimmer, can you comment on it? Does it work well, and is it a worthy trade off of the refugium mod?


This is my first nano tank, but here is a diagram i made of how i am thinking of setting it up. I was thinking i could also possibly put some media in the far right section (is this notated as section 1 or 3?) I made some comments on the diagram that i was unsure about.


Would you reccomend an alternate pump from the stock pump? I have heard the maxijet 900 tossed around as an alternative.


I have heard of people cutting the divider from chamber 1 to chamber 2.


I have also heard of people blocking off some of the bottom skimmer/intakes (why?)


If you don't mind, I would like to hear how some of you more experienced Nano reefers would setup a BC 14's filtration system. Any and all comments are greatly appreciated!





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Thanks for the link, I have read that page, and the associated pages, and have done many google searches also. I was hoping to get some feedback from a user who has the Sapphire nanoskimmer NC12/BC14.

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Don't put rubble. It will trap detritus and create nitrates/phosphates. Don't block the bottom grates off, they suck up quite a bit. Remove the tray instead. The protein skimmer or fuge is your choice. You sure the skimmer fits there? The pump is your choice, if you want more flow then change if, if not keep it.

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Ok, so ill remove the rubble then, and maybe use the extra space for media if necessary. Would you suggest media like purigen, and seagel? I updated the diagram to reflect the changes.


Why remove the middle tray? Wouldnt it be helpful to place media bags on it if water is being pulled up through it? Does it reduce a lot of flow?


I was considering also modifying one of the stock filters to put filter pads in, like done here:



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I run chemi pure were the stock sponge was. I have my filter floss on top of the tray in the middle chamber. I have my water line all the way up to the elbow on the return pump. What do you plan on keeping in your tank?

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Purigen or chemipure. Dont use seagel. The phosphate media is aluminum and may leach metal. The tray is good to remove because the 50w heater might not fit and so that junk doesnt stay under that tray.

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For now I would like to keep 2 onyx clowns, a semi large torch, and some softies and cuc. maybe some ricordeas, not sure what else...i'll gather frags, and see what does well. I like the idea of a goby, but not sure there are any that will do well in such a small tank. Will look into that later after i get my tank setup and cycled.


Do you guys just attach the media bags to large strings for removal later? Maybe its just me, but my arms are too big to fit into the back chambers.

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just saw the pics on your BC thread, great looking cube Gio.


What about the stock filter conversion trick i posted a link for? think this will impede flow too much? It sure sounds like it would clean up the water a lot.

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Took a closer look at the filter mod, and the tray in chamber 1. If i remove that tray, theres nothing to hold the filter in place. How vital is it to remove this tray?


EDIT: I think i can remove the bottom tray, and then use some epoxy at the end of the filter track to hold it in place. Water will obviously bypass the filter, but i am hoping it will still catch some of the larger particulates.

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I've taken all grating, filter pads, bio balls and everything but the sponge between chamber 2 and 3 out of the three chambers of my BC14. I replaced the bottom grate with a piece of egg crate and scraped away some black paint to let my fuge light in the back. It's much easier than the stock grating to remove or slurp stuff through when cleaning. I credit those mods, my water change and gravel vacuuming efforts and the success of my Chaeto for beating the GHA.

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Well, i was considering gutting the cartridge housing, and using the sheet filter pads in there. The reason for this being that I am also considering using a skimmer in chamber 2, and the filter pads would hopefully be a cheap way to scrub some of the larger particles out of the water, without reducing the flow too much.


I was planning for the use of the skimmer to reduce the frequency of water changes, am i wrong in this line of thinking?


this is the skimmer


here is a pic of the skimmer in a biocube 14. I believe it has since been reduced in size to fit without modification.



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There are shelf ridges at several positions in chamber 2. The bottom and top come with removable (at least for those blessed with small hands or long screwdrivers) plastic grates. Trash them both and remove the one at the bottom of chamber 1 when you remove and throw away the cheapo filter cartidge. Those grates just keep you from siphoning out the crap that settles there, and that's the crap that pumps nutrients back into your tank to feed nice, thick beds of green hair algae.


Where you put the egg crate depends on where you scrape the paint off the back wall for your fuge light. Steve and others here have recommended submersible pond lights that I'm sure work well too. In fact Steve makes a boss acrylic chamber 2 insert that is way cooler than a simple egg crate grate. Anyway, I put my grate on the second from bottom because that's where my fuge light shines; your's may be lower or higher but thankfully Oceanic thought ahead and put brackets there for you. Good luck.

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What about upgrading the pump? A lot say maxijet 900, are they referring to the maxijet 900 utility pump, or the maxijet 900 powerhead?


this is the link that is posted on the "approved mods page", its the maxijet utility pump:



here is the link to the maxijet 900 powerhead:



Which is the pump that most people use for their BC14 upgrades?


Has anyone used a RIO 600 pump as an upgrade?


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the maxijet utility pump is the one you want




I was looking at the Maxijet Utility pump series for my JBJ Nano-cubes (12 gallon). What is the largest pump you would use? I know the 1100 will fit, but I would like the 1800. Do you know if the 1800 will fit in the back of the JBJ 12 gallon?


Ideally, I would like to remove the Koralina. I would like to put the largest pump that would not out-flow the rear chamber. I would send it though the stock hole in the back wall and 'T' from there to provide flow down the left side and across the back wall.


Comments? Suggestions?

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