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VtheMaestro

Maestro's 7.5g Mr. Aqua Build

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VtheMaestro

After the success of my 57g Illuminata build, I'm trying my luck with another nano reef. This time it's a 7.5g Mr. Aqua cube for my bedside table.

 

Equipment List

  • 1x 12" cube Mr. Aqua 7.5 Gallon Frameless Low Iron Glass Aquarium Tank
  • 1x Finnex P-360 All-in-one Compact Canister Filter
  • 2x Ecoxotic EcoPico LED Arm Light Fixture w/ 12K White & 453nm Blue Strip
  • 1x Eheim Jager TruTemp 50 Watt Fully Submersible UL Approved Heater
  • 1x Hydra Aquatics 5mm Glass Hang-On Thermometer
  • 1x Sybon Refractometer

There's no room for a sump near this tank and the back will sit fairly flush against the wall. I'm opting for the canister filter instead of the ever-popular Aqua Clear 70 with fuge mod. I've heard countless times that a canister can turn into a nitrate factory without proper maintenance, but it will only house chemi-pure and a tiny bit of floss to polish the water. The majority of filtration will be done with live rock and sand. The bio-load will be low in this tank so waste shouldn't be a major issue.

 

Stock List

  • Zoanthids
  • Ricordia or Blue Mushroom
  • Fire Fern red macro (Bryothamnion sp.)
  • Small Torch Coral or Frogspawn
  • 3-4x Sexy Shrimp
  • 3x Dwarf Serith
  • 1x Glass Shell Hermit
  • (maybe) Catalina Goby

Maintenance Schedule

  • Daily freshwater top-off
  • Weekly tests
  • Weekly 2 gallon water change

The tank will be seeded with live sand from my main tank and cured live rock, so I'm not anticipating much of a cycle. Nevertheless, I plan to stock this tank slowly.

 

Any questions, comments, advice, trolling, and name-calling are welcome

Edited by VtheMaestro

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TheUnfocusedOne

I'm setting up the same thing.

 

What made you decide on the EcoPico LEDs?

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nickjqz

Lets see some pictures!!!

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VtheMaestro
I'm setting up the same thing.

 

What made you decide on the EcoPico LEDs?

 

Nice. Do you have a build thread for yours?

 

As for the EcoPico, there were a number of reasons

I have all Ecoxotic over my 57g so naturally I was attracted to their product line.

I like the sleek design of these fixtures and the ease of upgrading them

I didn't want a desk lamp or a hanging pendant with a par bulb beside my bed

I wanted to choose a cool fixture; my room gets warm

For the price of 2 units, EcoPico seemed like the ideal choice without mods or diy

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JR!

cant wait to see how this one is.

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VtheMaestro
cant wait to see how this one is.

Me too. I'll definitely be checking into your build for inspiration

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TheUnfocusedOne
Nice. Do you have a build thread for yours?

 

Right here. I'm not very popular atm :(.

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Trav86

I plan to go against the grain with my new rimless setup and get a canister filter also. What made you choose that particular one?

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VtheMaestro
I plan to go against the grain with my new rimless setup and get a canister filter also. What made you choose that particular one?

The reviews on Amazon were pretty good and I like the way the inlet/output are designed. I'll know for sure once I put it to the test. Everyone claims canister filters are nitrate factories, but so are dirty tanks, dirty refugiums, poorly-maintained hob's, and unchanged socks/sponges in sumps.

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Trav86

I've been researching canister filters all week. I can't decide. I do like the intake and output of that finnex. It's one of the only "nano" size filters. Some of them have such big intake and outputs. And the darn eheim tubes are bright green but have a reputation of being quality filters.

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JR!
Me too. I'll definitely be checking into your build for inspiration

awesome. hope i can be good help

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VtheMaestro

I reached out to my guy Colin Foord at Coral Morphologic and he's sending a nice package of rics and zoas my way. I'm especially looking forward to the ORA African Blue Cespitularia, I like the specimens I've seen in youtube videos.

 

It looks like I might be making some revisions to my lighting. I saw a nice LED retrofit on the EcoPico arm and it turns out to be produced by one of the forum's sponsors. I'm awaiting his response to my post, it may turn out to be a better and less expensive alternative to what I had planned. Stay tuned.

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VtheMaestro

Finally some pictures!

 

Just got my package from Colin at Coral Morphologic...

 

6288735565_ff4b572ab7.jpg

 

6289255660_1faeea8702.jpg

 

Unidentified zoanthids

6289255788_86c1f21b8d.jpg

 

Ultra Neon Green w/Aqua Skirt Ricordea florida6289255912_778be69e6c.jpg

 

Super Red Discosoma sp.

6288736289_aa35efde5e.jpg

 

Metallic Aqua-Teal-Blue Vice Zoas

6289256234_051700aeae.jpg

 

ORA African Blue Cespitularia sp.6288736649_6087314d66.jpg

 

Feather duster colony

6289256630_9981a6ec51.jpg

 

Day-Glo Pink w/ Lavender Center Ricordea

6289256818_f2936f066c.jpg

 

Strawberry tunicates

6289256970_7a304d8bfa.jpg

 

Unidentified palys

6289257108_282eb7d90f.jpg

 

St. Thomas mushroom

6289257318_9bf046b5f4.jpg

 

Yellow ball sponge

6289257504_529dd48fae.jpg

Edited by VtheMaestro

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nickjqz

Dang looks like you have some good stuff! Let's see some pictures of them in the tank. :)

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VtheMaestro

Acclimating and inspecting.

6289374747_cdff735570.jpg

 

Moved to the bottom of my display tank until the pico arrives

6292082979_d1de3d1cea.jpg

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VtheMaestro
Dang looks like you have some good stuff! Let's see some pictures of them in the tank. :)

Thanks, Nick. The tank hasn't been delivered yet, I'm just piecing everything together in the meantime.

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pismo_reefer

Nice color selection, V.... :D

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VtheMaestro
Nice color selection, V.... :D

Thank you. I hope it all looks that good underneath the ecopico fixture.

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VtheMaestro

I received my Finnex PX-360 Canister filter today. I hooked it up to my larger tank to test it and break it in until the Mr. Aqua arrives. I was amazed at how utterly and completely silent it is. It's rated to work on systems up to 25 gallons, so it should be perfect for my 7.5 gallon pico. I plan to run it with a little bit of floss in the top chamber and a mix of purigen and chemipure in the lower level. I'll be doing biweekly floss changes to keep the waste from accumulating and recontaminating the tank. Overall I'm very happy with my purchase and I think it will keep my tank water crystal clear.

Edited by VtheMaestro

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VtheMaestro

I just spoke with a rep from Ecoxotic. He says the mounting brackets for the new Panorama Pro modules are to be released early next week. I may use one of those instead of the Ecopico lights. I'm still drawn to the modularity of my original choice, but I'm also attracted to the light boost of the Pro.

 

Thoughts?

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VtheMaestro

The tank, lights, and thermometer came today. Off to walmart to buy spray for the back. I'm going to hold off on unboxing the lights since it seems some other options are on the horizon.

 

6300815884_084a296c2e.jpg

 

6300282783_3cbb9b2e14.jpg

Edited by VtheMaestro

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VtheMaestro

I decided to go with an Aquaclear 50 instead of the Finnex px 360. The Finnex is dead silent but using the airlines to run it below the tank robbed me of flow due to back pressure. Also, the outlet of the filter is below the water's edge and I see the potential for a film to develop.

 

On the other hand, the Aquaclear adds a tiny bit of surface area to the water and the cascade it creates causes a good deal of surface agitation. I tried using an AC20 impeller in the AC50 but it backed down the flow too much.

 

The tank passed the wet test so it's time to get some salt in here.

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JR!

can wait to see it all set up. how come you didnt go with the ac70 and use a bit smaller impeller?

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VtheMaestro
can wait to see it all set up. how come you didnt go with the ac70 and use a bit smaller impeller?

I didn't want to do any fancy fuge mods and my local petsmart didn't have the 70 in stock. I'll check at another store while I'm out. I guess the added water volume wouldn't hurt.

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iball1804

Tank looks great!

 

Gotta love seamless silicone bonds. :blush:

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