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FoggySalt DIY 10 Gallon Nano & Sump


foggysalt

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FTS 12/8/2012

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Sometime in July I decided I want to try my hand at a nano reef. But not just any nano reef.. a custom nano reef.

 

Fast forward and here you have it. My 10 gallon tank and sump, hand made by your's truly. Tomorrow this tank will be exactly 7 days old.. it's a baby.

 

Waiting for it to get done cycling so I can start adding the goodies... you know, like fish and stuff.

 

FTS 9/9/12

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I'm also waiting to get my lights in the mail. This picture does not show my 425 PH either. Still trying to figure out the best place for it but I have time for that.

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Sometime in July I decided I want to try my hand at a nano reef. But not just any nano reef.. a custom nano reef.

 

Fast forward and here you have it. My 10 gallon tank and sump, hand made by your's truly. Tomorrow this tank will be exactly 7 days old.. it's a baby.

 

Waiting for it to get done cycling so I can start adding the goodies... you know, like fish and stuff.

 

393437_10152085406695635_901033823_n.jpg

 

I'm also waiting to get my lights in the mail. This picture does not show my 425 PH either. Still trying to figure out the best place for it but I have time for that.

 

Nice work .. will be following for sure

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I have a ecoxotic stunner 8k 453 blue LEDs for my refugium and the RGB pro LEDs for the display tank. I'm going to get another stunner for the display tank someday probably and maybe another blue light for the sump. I don't know.

 

I wanted LEDs so they wouldn't produce any extra heat seeing as how my tank is in a nook.

 

To be honest, lights really confuse me. I try to get the whole Kelvin and PAR and all that and no matter how many times I read it I go cross-eyed. One day I'll get it.

 

The light you see in my tank right now is actually from some Halogen track lighting set up on the ceiling. It makes very pretty ripping effects.

 

While I'm waiting for it all to cycle I'm researching what to put into it..

 

thinking a clown or dwarf angels or gobies or something small like that.

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Okay. So now that I have something to report, I'm reporting an update!

 

Today, at one week and 6 days old, my first nitrites and nitrates have shown up in my tank. YEAH!!

 

I went from 8ppm Ammonia last week to 2 this morning.

.25 nitrites

5 nitrates

 

Still got some way to go but not a bad little cycle.

 

And there are tons of little white bugs (pods) all over the tank and sump!!!

 

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So, now I might go ahead and get some algae to put in my sump.

 

I built a stockman standpipe to silence my gurgling overflow and while it worked a little bit it was by no means a 100% silencer.. so...... I've decided to rip (or rather, cut) my overflow box off and completely remake/design it and add a bubble-trap canister to my sump to keep down on evaporation, salt creep and bubbles.

 

Bubbles don't get back to my pump/display tank but they sure do cause a lot of evap. :P

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Thanks, everyone. I'm excited to get this tank swimming.

 

My son's birthday is in a few weeks and for a birthday present I want to be able to take him to the LFS and let him pick out the first fish to go in the tank (from a list of approved fish for a 10 gallon tank, that is).

 

Every day he comes in and begs to put fish in it so I figured it would be a good present.

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Thanks, everyone. I'm excited to get this tank swimming.

 

My son's birthday is in a few weeks and for a birthday present I want to be able to take him to the LFS and let him pick out the first fish to go in the tank (from a list of approved fish for a 10 gallon tank, that is).

 

Every day he comes in and begs to put fish in it so I figured it would be a good present.

 

Is Daddy choosing the fish or is the son :)

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Well, I figure the best way to do it would be to make a list of any/all fish that I might want in the tank (and that are suitable, of course), call the LFS and ask which of them they have in stock and then print pictures of those and let him take the list with him and pick the fish from matching his picture with a live fish.

 

He's only 3 so he's not going to understand limitations if I take him to the store and just say, "pick a fish." I'd end up with a melt down when he picks a tang and I have to explain to him about the tang police. :D

 

Sooo.. he gets the illusion that he's choosing but I had a lot to do with the choice. ;)

 

Win/Win!!

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Well, I figure the best way to do it would be to make a list of any/all fish that I might want in the tank (and that are suitable, of course), call the LFS and ask which of them they have in stock and then print pictures of those and let him take the list with him and pick the fish from matching his picture with a live fish.

 

He's only 3 so he's not going to understand limitations if I take him to the store and just say, "pick a fish." I'd end up with a melt down when he picks a tang and I have to explain to him about the tang police. :D

 

Sooo.. he gets the illusion that he's choosing but I had a lot to do with the choice. ;)

 

Win/Win!!

Win/win indeed and good thinking

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So, today I went and got some live rock rubble to seed my dry rock and feed my pods and some cheato.

 

Tomorrow I should be able to install my stunner.

 

I am dragging my feet on tearing off the overflow and installing the new one because.. well, I REALLY don't want to do it no matter how much it must be done.

 

But I did get off my lazy butt and at least get the parts for the standpipes. First steps, first, right?

 

My big ball of cheato...

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And this is what it looks like when it's not hiding in a nook.

 

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Long story made very short: My overflow sounded like a flushing toilet.. CONSTANTLY!! It was made slightly quieter with some filter floss but needed to be fixed. It also sucked a LOT of bubbles into my sump. They didn't get around to my return pump but they sure made for a lot of salt creep and evaporation.

 

So, I decided that instead of just trying to make a working thing good or even better, I would go ahead and go for best and rip the whole thing off and start over.

 

However, when your tank is stuck into a nook, just doing anything to the back of it is a big process... Like draining the water into buckets, moving the tank, doing the work and reversing the process.

 

Today, we moved the tank and sump to a place I could get at them. I did my measurements and put together my standpipes... now I just have to finish making the overflow box, cut off the old one and fasten the new one in place... oh, and drill new holes in the shelf for the drain lines.

 

I was hoping to have it done by tomorrow but I don't think that's going to happen.

 

Although I am going to have a hard time putting it back in the nook. It looks BEAUTIFUL in the sunlight!!

 

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My tank is now 4 weeks old, exactly. And this morning I'm happy to announce that my tank has completed its cycle.

 

Ammonia is 0 (down from 8ppm two weeks ago)

Nitrite: 0 (down from off the charts just last week)

Nitrate: 40 (down from 80)

 

I'll do the water change and start shopping for frags and fish!!

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I really, really like what you're doing here!!!

I have to confess, figuring out plumbing on this type of setup confuses me the way lighting confuses you.

However, this is exactly the kind of small setup that really appeals to me, so mebbe I can learn from your experiences here.

I personally prefer T5HO lighting, but they just don't make it small enough for tanks like this.

I've tried LEDs over a Pico, but my corals didn't respond well to it. That may have been because I tend to use Soft Corals & LPS in my tanks and from my own observations, it seems like SPS respond better to LEDs.

I have a blue LED stunner strip on hand, and I think if I did another Pico I'd lean towards using the Power Compact Perch light I already have, supplemented by the Stunner Strip to add a little shimmer.

 

Did you build that overflow box yourself?

If not, where did you get it?

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I really, really like what you're doing here!!!

I have to confess, figuring out plumbing on this type of setup confuses me the way lighting confuses you.

However, this is exactly the kind of small setup that really appeals to me, so mebbe I can learn from your experiences here.

I personally prefer T5HO lighting, but they just don't make it small enough for tanks like this.

I've tried LEDs over a Pico, but my corals didn't respond well to it. That may have been because I tend to use Soft Corals & LPS in my tanks and from my own observations, it seems like SPS respond better to LEDs.

I have a blue LED stunner strip on hand, and I think if I did another Pico I'd lean towards using the Power Compact Perch light I already have, supplemented by the Stunner Strip to add a little shimmer.

 

Did you build that overflow box yourself?

If not, where did you get it?

 

Thank you!

LOL. I think that's funny because now plumbing seems so easy.. and lighting is still so confusing.

 

Thanks for the info on lights. I'm thinking I might have to get a panarama pro LED and suplement that with some stunner strips if I want to keep LPS or anything. I still haven't figured out exactly what I want to put in my tank yet. It's all so pretty!!!

 

Yes, I built the overflow box myself. Pretty much everything you see in any of these pictures is "home made."

 

The overflow you see in the pictures is the old box. The new box is bronze so that you can't see the plumbing.

 

Best yet? It is 100% SILENT and bubble free. My evaporation rate is cut down and I have zero salt creep.

 

I don't mean to brag but, dang I feel pretty good about the new set up. I'll get pictures up eventually.

 

I have discovered that the most important thing about plumbing is eliminating air. Air adds bubbles, salt creep and noise. If you can eliminate air in your lines you eliminate all of those things. And the most successful way to eliminate air is with a siphon and ball valves. You need a little more plumbing but in the end you will have such a system that's so quiet and maintenance free you wouldn't even know it's running and never have to touch it again.. win/win!!

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I actually have a ball valve and some other misc plumbing parts from when I planned on doing a plumbed tank but never got around to it.

Maybe if I get really brave one of these days I'll have you build me an overflow box. You know, in your spare time 'n stuff. ;)

 

How wide is your Display Tank? I'm just trying to think of lighting options for you.

Also, LPS don't need very strong lighting, and some of them even respond negatively to it. I think a lot of ppl are misled on that count.

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I actually have a ball valve and some other misc plumbing parts from when I planned on doing a plumbed tank but never got around to it.

Maybe if I get really brave one of these days I'll have you build me an overflow box. You know, in your spare time 'n stuff. ;)

 

How wide is your Display Tank? I'm just trying to think of lighting options for you.

Also, LPS don't need very strong lighting, and some of them even respond negatively to it. I think a lot of ppl are misled on that count.

 

I use CFT 23 watt (100 watt equivalent) and use two of them for my 20 G High and that seems to work quite well for LPS corals even those placed on the substrate.

 

That's 200 watt equivalent 9 hours a day

 

 

OAN ... weetabix7 did post to pest and disease including a new one on Zoa Pox

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FTS: 10/7/12

 

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Rearranged my rock just a little bit. The light in my tank right now is a desk lamp... lol. Should be getting my Ecoxotic stuff in the mail tomorrow!!

 

I also found five corallimorphs in my tank.

 

I fed them some blood worms yesterday and they sure perked up!!

 

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I also, obviously, have some red bubble algae growing on my LR.. I've heard some people who don't like it and try to get rid of it. Don't know if I want it or not.

 

Suggestions?

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I have to say that I really like this tank. The location is great and I love the rock work. You really have done an excellent job with the construction - I love that its fully DIY. I like the the clever way that you have hidden the equipment in the display sump.

 

Fantastic!

 

Red bubble algae is difficult to get rid of once it sets in. The procedure I used was cut away the rock below the algae. On the smaller rocks I simply put them outside to experience Canadian winter.

 

With respect to your hitch hikers; they appear to be Ball Anemone to me. They aren't actually an anemone at all and belong to the corallimorph family as you said.

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  • 1 month later...

Okay, it's been a while since I've updated this because there hasn't been a lot to update.

 

Some other things in my life have taken some time away from things so I haven't had the opportunity to finish building my new overflow box. But.... that hasn't kept me from enjoying my tank.

 

Since the last time I updated I have gotten a bit of a clean-up-crew...

 

1 Peppermint Shrimp

5 hermit crabs (some of them were hitch-hikers

1 crab I haven't yet been able to identify, perhaps an emerald

2 sexy shrimp (okay, I know they aren't REALLY clean up crew, but they are cute)

2 snails.

 

I also added my first two fish... I give you.. Smokey and the bandit....

 

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One of the crabs in my sump:

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The sexies. They are in my sump, too, to keep them away from any predators:

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Another hermit, checking out the new shells I dropped in:

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My peppermint in "night" mode:

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My whole tank, from the back:

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  • 2 weeks later...

Been fighting a Nitrate problem. I've done 4 water changes in as many days, vacuumed my sand, trimmed my chaeto, cleaned my pump1 overflow box, and finally replaced all my tubing and have finally seen my whales go down to 40 for the first time all week. I Know that is still high but I'm out of salt water to do another change.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Another update!

 

I think I've finally got my nitrates figured out. They are about 30ish right now and I just need to wait for my LR to catch up with everything going on in my tank.

 

I really want to start putting corals in but I'm going to wait until my LR catches up with my nitrates.

 

BUT! That doesn't stop me from having a lot of fun with my tank.

 

My peppermint shrimp has become my best friend. He eats out of my hand.. it's adorable.

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I have also been able to lure out a mystery crab that hitch hiked its way into my tank via LR.

 

This is my tank these days:

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My fish are happy and healthy:

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This is bandit. I'm pretty sure he will be the female. He's big and bossy but cute.

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This is Smokey. He's smaller and lets bandit push him around:

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This is my mystery hitch-hiking crab. It took some doing to get this picture, let me tell you!!

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All in all, other than waiting for my nitrates to come down everything in my tank looks very happy and healthy! I'm really looking forward to adding some corals in the future.

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