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bpkenn

Bpkenn's BC 14

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bpkenn

Decided to sell off my 75G and go with something smaller and more manageable for the time being. So I bought a Biocube 14g.

 

I've decided to use one of the new sapphire nanoskimmers in this build, and to keep it runnign well, it was recommended to keep a consistent water level. As it so happens, i have the old ATO from my recently broken down tank.

 

So I've installed the tunze osmolator into my biocube...probably overkill, but its what I had on hand. I had to silicon the rails into place in order to install it in the least intrusive manner. for the feed line i was able to clip it onto the back corner. This will hopefully allow me enough room to remove and replace media should i choose to put it in this chamber.

 

Theres a few things I am unsure of, and was hoping the rest of you could help me with them.

 

What kind of replacement pump should I get for the biocube 14? I would like to use the hydor flo attachment, so the stock pump 100gph isnt going to do it.

 

I have seen the maxijet 900 told as the standard (the utility pump, or powerhead version??) and it looks like the RIO 600+ would fit also.

Here are links to the different pumps.

Maxijet 900 Utility pump:

http://www.drsfostersmith.com/product/prod...fm?pcatid=18989

Maxijet 900 powerhead:

http://www.drsfostersmith.com/product/prod...cfm?pcatid=4609

Rio 600+ pump:

http://www.drsfostersmith.com/product/prod...cfm?pcatid=4671

 

Should i use live rock rubble to fill in the chambers or not? I was told detritus will collect and be tough to clean out.

 

Is a DSB feasible for a bio cube? I am worried about having an endless sandstorm with an upgraded pump and the hydor FLO. Can anyone comment from experience?

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Edited by bpkenn

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Naturalreef

Hey there Bp,

Since I just finished upgrading to a Biocube 14 from an 8, I'll tell you what has worked for me. As far as upgrading the pump, I would def go with the maxi 900 @237gph. I also use the Hydor and while most people don't like it I purchased two and always keep them clean and alternate them and have never had a problem. The maxi 900 and Hydor give "perfect" flow throughout the whole tank for me. Every coral gets flow to it, now keep in mind I don't have live rock blocking any of the flow. If you have a huge wall of live rock I can see needing two pumps maybe. I made a island out of my live rock and the hydor is perfect and gives a nice clean appearance in the tank. I would not use live rock rubble in the back as stated detritus "will" accumulate even if you threw some hermits back there.

 

I don't subscribe to the DSB in a nano. I use 1/2 inch of medium grain size aragonite so it doesn't blow around and 1/2 inch allows you to have more water and room in the tank. Unless you plan on keeping a watchman goby, I wouldn't do a DSB. I like the Biocube's a lot...very good construction and lighting and the 14 gallon has enough room for a decent mini-reef. have fun!

 

Nick

Edited by Naturalreef

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bpkenn

I would like to keep a goby, not sure what type. Do they all require the finest aragonite sands?

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Gvtv44

I wouldn't keep your media in the third chamber, but the first- that chamber receives the LEAST flow, so I would put it in the first. Definitely leave the sponge, but clean regularly/ often (once a month is what I did). As for the rubble- it's a skimmer or rubble I'm afraid- only place you have to put it is in chamber one (which will cause a problem because dirty, unfiltered water will meet up with it, leaving a lot of detritus)- unless you put some on the side of the skimmer if it fits- that I have seen, and it will stay fairly clean if you mechanically filter the water before it gets to chamber two.

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uwwmatt

This is the pump you want.

http://www.drsfostersmith.com/product/prod...fm?pcatid=18989

 

Don't worry about a sand storm. In my 14G I had an upgraded pump, koralia 1, and a koralia nano. I still wouldn't do a DSB in a nano. It takes up to much room in the tank, water changes will be your biggest nutrient export.

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bpkenn
This is the pump you want.

http://www.drsfostersmith.com/product/prod...fm?pcatid=18989

 

Don't worry about a sand storm. In my 14G I had an upgraded pump, koralia 1, and a koralia nano. I still wouldn't do a DSB in a nano. It takes up to much room in the tank, water changes will be your biggest nutrient export.

 

UWWMatt thanks for the clarification on the pump. I've seen so many posts about people saying they had to modify chamber 3 in order to get the maxijet 900 to fit. It just didnt seem right that people would recommend a pump that required modification of the bubbletrap/sponge holder to fit.

 

Ive revised things a bit. I bought a sapphire nano reactor and I am going to put the media in that, in chamber 1 along with the heater. chamber 2 will be sapphire nanoskimmer bc14/nc12, chamber 3 (maxijet 900 or rio 600) and tunze osmolator ATO.

post-42229-1233857592_thumb.jpg

 

Next post i will put up some pictures of the ATO installation...was a rather tight squeeze for my hands/arms, and ive got rather small bones.

 

How much sand do i need to keep a goby in my tank? I was thinking of getting a hi gin red banded goby, or an orange spotted goby. pistol shrimp possibly? not sure to be honest, but I want to leave my options open. I also would like to stock two onyx clowns from a local breeder.

Edited by bpkenn

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bpkenn

Here is the ATO isntalled:

Originally i started out with two rails because i was under the impression the water level for my skimmer would require the chambers to be nearly full. So I used silicone to attach the rails of the ATO to the back glass. This worked fairly well.

post-42229-1233855812_thumb.jpg

 

I learned this morning after e-mailing Kyle from Sapphire Aquatics that the optimal water level was approximately 8". So i decided to attempt to remove one of the rails, and put everything on one. Well if youve ever stuck your hand in the back chamber of a biocube, imagine tryign to loosen a screw inside of one.

 

The rails require you to screw them into a plate then silicone it to the wall, in order to slide the top off switch holders onto and off of the rails, you have to take the screws out. I couldnt find anything that was small enough and provide me enough torque/leverage to turn the screw and break it free from the silicone bond. Finally I found a small wrench in my computer tool box that was about 2 inches long and able to fit in the screw head. After a couple try's I was able to turn the screw and attach the switch slider. Ive still got a welt on my forearm from the lip of the BC.

post-42229-1233856245_thumb.jpg

 

For the installation of the water feed line, I used the clips for mounting the rails to the lip of a sump, and clamped them onto the corner of the biocube. Then I positioned the feed line slightly below the safety switch on the ATO. This way if the safety switch is triggered, it will stop the feed pump and cause a siphon to start until the water level drops below the feed tube. It adds an extra layer of safety to an already small tank where a flood can happen quickly.

post-42229-1233856502_thumb.jpg

Edited by bpkenn

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Gvtv44

WOW- I just clamped mine on the divider...

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bpkenn

I was under the impression i would need both rails at first. second i didnt want to risk it interfering with the skimmer in chamber 2. I'm not sure how much room there is to spare with the new Sapphire aquatics skimmers installed.

 

To be honest, attaching it using the silicone was easy, and it is the least intrusive. I can still easily access the chambers now.

Edited by bpkenn

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Gvtv44

Gotcha- hopefully the work pays off. Keep us updated!

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bpkenn

Saw a reef tank at the LFS today with indo-pacific sand and i really like the look. So i emptied out most of the livesand that I had in the BC from my old tank (kept a couple cups to seed), and replaced it with indo pacific.

 

http://www.caribsea.com/pages/buy_it/araga...cificblack.html

 

One thing i had to do was sift through the sand by hand and pick out all of the larger pieces. I plan to get a goby eventually, so i thought it might be important to do this.

 

pictures later once i get my new pump and get it installed and have things flowing.

Edited by bpkenn

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reefer714

BpKenn, fyi, i have the reactor in chamber one and I can not fit in my stealth heater in there so i moved it to 3, the MJ900 pump fits rite in no mod necessary, do you have the NC12 or are you waiting like the rest of us like forever... Kyle emailed me yesterday and said he's still waiting for the impellar. so it looks like it's going to be a lot longer 3 mo & counting....

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bpkenn
BpKenn, fyi, i have the reactor in chamber one and I can not fit in my stealth heater in there so i moved it to 3, the MJ900 pump fits rite in no mod necessary, do you have the NC12 or are you waiting like the rest of us like forever... Kyle emailed me yesterday and said he's still waiting for the impellar. so it looks like it's going to be a lot longer 3 mo & counting....

 

 

I'm waiting like the rest of you. What type of heater do you have? Kyle told me I hsould be able to get a heater and the reactor in chamber 1, if not its not a big deal to put it in chamber 3. I'm waiting like the rest of you for the new version. He told me 3-4 weeks at max, but we'll see. Not sure why their supplier is required to do them in one huge batch. I mean, do they turn out 500 in one day, then ship them off? If not why can't they package them in reasonable amounts and ship them as they are produced.

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reefer714
I'm waiting like the rest of you. What type of heater do you have? Kyle told me I hsould be able to get a heater and the reactor in chamber 1, if not its not a big deal to put it in chamber 3. I'm waiting like the rest of you for the new version. He told me 3-4 weeks at max, but we'll see. Not sure why their supplier is required to do them in one huge batch. I mean, do they turn out 500 in one day, then ship them off? If not why can't they package them in reasonable amounts and ship them as they are produced.

I have the stealth 50 , and there's no room for any type of heater in there, unless you really force/squeeze it in and don't care if it melts the plexiglass reactor, but with the BC324 light mod you really don't need a heater it keeps at 79-80 constantly. I don't know how they do( maybe he has another job and does this part time) but if I were in business and made people wait months I'd be on the unemployment line cashin my welfare checks...

your mods are great i don't know what else you can do to trick it out... ;)

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Gvtv44

Chamber 3 isn't a good place for the reactor or a heater. The reactor will have little to no flow and definitely no directional flow (what filter media needs) and the heater will not correctly heat the tank (won't get a proper reading of water temp and the lack of flow will cause it to work inefficiently. And with the 3.24 mod, yes, you do need a heater for stabilizing the temps- ambient room temperatures vary, and without a heater you will get stressful swings. Stabilization and flow are key in a nano ;)

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bpkenn

Won't 8 inchs of water in chamber 3 be sufficient for a heater. Won't 200 gallons per hour be adequate flow through the 3rd chamber? The reactor also has a pump built into it btw. not sure if you knew this.

Edited by bpkenn

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reefer714
Chamber 3 isn't a good place for the reactor or a heater. The reactor will have little to no flow and definitely no directional flow (what filter media needs) and the heater will not correctly heat the tank (won't get a proper reading of water temp and the lack of flow will cause it to work inefficiently. And with the 3.24 mod, yes, you do need a heater for stabilizing the temps- ambient room temperatures vary, and without a heater you will get stressful swings. Stabilization and flow are key in a nano ;)

where do you suggest putting the heater if chamber 1 has the reactor and chamber 2 will eventually get the P Skimmer?

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bpkenn
Chamber 3 isn't a good place for the reactor or a heater. The reactor will have little to no flow and definitely no directional flow (what filter media needs) and the heater will not correctly heat the tank (won't get a proper reading of water temp and the lack of flow will cause it to work inefficiently. And with the 3.24 mod, yes, you do need a heater for stabilizing the temps- ambient room temperatures vary, and without a heater you will get stressful swings. Stabilization and flow are key in a nano ;)

 

TBH I see no problem with having the heater in chamber 3. How can you say there will be no flow in that chamber when you have a pump there pulling 247 GPH of water from that chamber with an 8 inch water level. Thats a little rediculous, but do correct me if I'm wrong.

 

Second, how can you say the reactor has no directional flow? Sitting in the first chamber you have a constant renewal of water from the bottom, and top vents. Also there is a pump attached to the reactor that pushes the water through the media at a rate of 74 GPH.

 

http://sapphireaquatics.com/onlinestore/in...p;products_id=9

 

Not trying to be abrasive or call you out, but your post just doesn't make sense. Please correct me if i'm wrong here as this would be a serious design flaw and needs to be corrected.

Edited by bpkenn

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Gvtv44

Diagrams:

 

Flow1.jpg

 

Flow2.jpg

 

The problem with putting anything that requires flow in chamber 3 is that there isn't any "flow" through the chamber- just residual water from what flows from chamber 2 to 3, which just flows out, you don't have directional flow like you do through chambers 1 and 2. (Having just looked at my tank, it's pretty stagnant) If you can't fit a heater in either 1 or 2, then I guess you have to put it in the third chamber- but it just isn't optimal- the more flow a heater has the more efficiently it will work. (Why forced heat and air conditioners are better than other methods) Just because there is water in the chamber doesn't mean it is moving as vigorously as it does in the rest of the tank- that's why chamber 3 works so well for an ATO unit input- the fresh water is gradually mixed with salt water so it doesn't stress anything out. But for filter media or a heater this isn't a good thing. If it were my tank, I would put the reactor and heater in chamber 1, skimmer in chamber two, and pump in chamber 3. As for the heater not fitting- try a smaller heater- stealths are pretty large as heaters go- try an azoo titanium. And although heaters get hot, as long as it doen't have direct physical contact with the acrylic, you should not have any melting. Look at your filled tanks that are running, and observe how the water flows- it will pay off!

 

Good Luck, and if you have any questions, I will be happy to help!

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bpkenn

Thanks for the recommendation for smaller heaters. Ideally having the reactor and heater in chamber 1 would be best. I will look into the azoo titanium. For the mean time, putting the heater where the bubble trap/sponge is should provide a decent amount of flow past the heater. drop it in the diagonally to increase the surface area a bit.

Edited by bpkenn

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RustyNano

I like the setup but, I would attempt to get the heater in chamber 1. I am very interested in seeing how your tank progresses. I am doing something similar with a BC29.

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bpkenn

Waiting for my DFS shipment. It was supposed to go out on friday, but I don't think it will end up going out until monday sometime. So hopefully updates mid next week.

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Gvtv44

Ok- looking forward to it- with this much research/ debate, it will turn out well :)

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bpkenn

Gvtv44, have you ever used an azoo titanium heater? I did a search and found this thread: http://www.fishlore.com/fishforum/betta-ar...ch-stealth.html

 

Not sure what to make of it. Whats your overall experience?

 

Also, I read that you did the 3.24 lighting upgrade. Are you happy with it, and did you replace your oceanic ballasts with the workhorse ballasts at the same time? Does the kit come with additional moonlights? (other than the option to add the r2's) Did your temps drop after installation?

Edited by bpkenn

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Gvtv44

Never saw that, also heard that certain titanium heaters rust- after nearly two years (April is the 2 year anniversary, haha) I haven't had a spot of rust, and I set it once to get my temps up, and the tank has never gone below 78. Overall I'd say it's the best heater I have ever owned (I have had 7 tanks over the years, and had to replace the heaters on the rest all at least once. Never on the nano though :)

 

 

For the money, the lighting upgrade is well worth it. Unless you are ready to go MH from the start, it's a great way to keep many types of coral and other critter goodies, haha. The Oceanic ballasts were changed, it uses the stock moon lights, I did not add any and I find this sufficient, but that's a matter of personal taste. It did not drop my temps as it suggests. It did the exact opposite and raised them by three and a half degrees. I fixed the problem by installing a circulation fan (see thread for details). After doing that, my temps stayed (and still stay) around 78.5-80 degrees, keeping everyone happy and healthy.

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