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ePicForks 2.5 Gallon - "My 3 and Under Pico Contest Entry"

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New pico tank coming soon. Will have tank pics up shortly, I'm way behind a lot of people, plus I'm new. :P

Edited by EpicFork

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Welcome to the contest! As long as you get enerything set up this week, you won't be that far behind everyone else, considering that no one can add livestock till April 1st anyway...Hopefully you can score some nice cured rock and not have much of an ammonia spike!


Also, any chance you could edit the "My 3 and under pico contest entry" into the subtext title description? Thanks, and Good Luck!


contest judge


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Okay, hopefully it worked. :P It worked! Okay more pictures will come, I'll try to keep up for the contest but I would like to set everything up slowly and correctly as this will be on my desk for years to come.


I'm familiar with cycling. I have a cool local reef shop. I'm new to saltwater completely. My first few items are going to be the following:


Refractor (spelling?) - With such a small tank I want the salt level to be accurate

Water Test - I need a new one for saltwater reefs

Aquarium silicone caulking stuff - Anyone know the brand off hand, I always see it on here, cant remember...

Acrylic or glass to create a custom refugium area - I dont want a HOB filter as its bulky and destroys the "nanoness", if thats a word :) ... I have thought of an internal filter as well.. Thats the much easier route but create a refugium with the waterfall effect is something I really like...

Lighting - I live in vegas, has anyone ever used the sun for a tank? I grow a lot of plants and have direct sun, as long as water temps are correct I dont see why the sun wouldn't work? However besides from the sun I was thinking of leds... I might have to custom make those due to the size of the tank. Anyone know of a 2.5 gallon light bar that most people use in the larger tank?

Saltwater - Instant Ocean

Live sand

Live rock

a lot of other stuff probably :)


Anyhow I got a lot to learn but familiar with fish keeping and have been reading on saltwater for awhile. Should be cool.



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Here is a quick sketch of what im thinking.




lol, i like this little sketch up.

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This glass tank is one of the first ever saltwater tank setups I saw back when I was 16 years old. That year was 1986 and I think Michael Jackson was just touching the charts back then.


It's an amazing tiny little tank that packs a lot of potential!


#### luck,



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lol, i like this little sketch up.

Looks like a great design!

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OKay I'm still working on this... Design has changed a lot! :) That happens... This was WAY harder than I thought it would be... I may or may not make it for the contest but I am more concerned about getting it set up right and so it lasts.


I really like the idea of separating length wise instead of separating width in regards with the refugium. I also have considered some sort of micro canister set up since there isnt much room in that tank to begin with..


Just wanted to give a quick update. Also did you guys know many submersible pumps dont work with saltwater? I never knew that.

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Okay so I got building...


Pump (Smartpond 50 to 80gph) (Says not saltwater but we will see, can get another if needed)

Acrylic Sheets x 3 (.80 inches thick )

GE 1 Silicone

Plastic Cutter

Glass Cutter

hole saw


safety goggles



I opted for the side refuge. The hardest thing I ran into was trying to silicone in a very small area, does anyone have tips for doing this? I think I should have opted for a smaller tube of silicone not the one that would go into a caulking gun. I wound up applying the silicone to a piece of tubing and than using the tubing to reach down and swipe it upwards. I definitely need to improve my silicone skills however everything was water tight and past the water test. I waited a solid 24 hours before testing.


It has water in it and has been running for a few days now. I will have more pictures up when I get the filter material in, live rock, sand, etc...


Still not sure of the corals I am going to choose. Seahorses will not be done in this tank however maybe in another project.


Thanks for the replies so far. That one tank linked to was awesome! So many nice tanks around this forum, a lot of handmade stuff which is really cool.


More pictures coming soon!




So far its been a lot of fun, I can tell already I want to make another one.








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Some more pictures with a water shot... I have 6 holes going into the refuge area, it then flows down to 5 holes, and through up to the pump... Each hole is 1/2 inch. I am designing a little piece of acrylic that can close off 3 holes going into the refuge area which adds a nice waterfall effect. I chose to do 5 holes in the bottom of the refuge to slow things down as there will be filter material it has to go through in order to go up to reach the pump. Chaeto or the red algae will be used in that first compartment. I have also toyed with the live sand in just that compartment...


Dunno, Ive got lots of ideas :)


Fun times... More pictures coming soon.




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