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ViralEntity

The Mostly-All-In-One Red Sea Max 130

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ViralEntity

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Handy Post Links:

TBA

 

Background:

In early 2008, my Wife and I got the crazy idea to make money breeding tropical fish. What followed was a fun learning experience that at its peak involved over 60x 3ft fish tanks in 2 insulated fish rooms and the successful breeding of 30 different cichlid species, as well as other various tropical fish. Although we didn’t make millions, we did have a ball spending time together and it more than paid for itself.

 

But all good things must come to an end, and with the decision to start a family made, the fish had to go. It was around this time I was looking at going back to a single big display tank in the house and was debating with my Wife just how big. After the effort involved to maintain the breeding setup we had, she wasn’t keen to have a large tank or a tank that would look incomplete and messy in the house, particularly with young children running around. So the solution was to find some sort of All-In-One setup that was self enclosed with a cabinet and the works. It was then I stumbled across Nano-Reef and I was hooked.

 

Unfortunately the trade off for living in Australia is that the selection for AIO's is very slim. Well at least in the sub $500 category that I was looking at there was nothing that gave me the opportunity to have the type of tank I wanted. I knew a Nano reef tank was the way I wanted to go and I wouldn't settle for anything less. My tank of choice was a ELOS 2 foot cube but at $2500 it was well outside of budget and so was the RSM range which from memory started at about $1400 on a good day. I remember trawling through the internet forums seeing these beautiful AIO tanks that people were picking up overseas for a quarter of what I would I have to pay and it was very disheartening.

 

So I did what any one else would do - Ebay. Luck would have it I stumbled across a second hand RSM130 for sale and it was only a short drive away. Not only that, it was upgraded with the 130D components, the stock skimmer had been replaced with a Tunze 9002 and In Tank media rack, a spare set of globes and a EcoTech MP10wES! All for $500 - the only downfall being that the glass was cracked. Considering the extras, I thought worse case I could resell the parts for more than what the tank would cost me. Even better, when I inspected the tank the cracked glass was on the inner sump wall meaning even if it did leak, it would only go inside the tank. I bought it on the spot and couldn't wait to get it set up.

 

MAIO v1:

Now I am normally one to spend way too much time researching something before I do anything, particularly when it comes to fish. This time around I think the excitement and dreams of a Great Barrier Reef in the lounge room got to me. I very carefully constructed a minimalistic outcrop style base rock pile, leaving enough room for circulation around and behind the rocks, partly because the rock wall look didn’t appeal to me. However I never stopped to think about where I would put the seeding live rock…. So it ended up sitting on top of the other base rock and ruined my lovely aqua scape. It also meant that the rockwork was now an inch or two closer to the glass making cleaning of the glass a pain. I also purchased a fine white coral sand as per something I read online - except the LFS only had the next size down so I bought that instead. As it turns out, marine aquariums have a lot more flow than fresh water tanks - sand storm anyone? Sand in a skimmer pump is also a bad idea (who would have guessed?) which cooked the 9002, so new skimmer was purchased. Although in my opinion a better skimmer, the Turboflotor Blue 500 has different water level requirement that means every time the power goes off the skimmer cup over flows. Which in turn means the tank crashes….. More recently the inbuilt power centre, which at some point has corroded internally, completely packed it in so all the wiring has to be replanned. It also appears that the timer mounted in the hood is losing an hour a day, causing it to switch on and off at weird hours if it isn't set each day.

 

 

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To cut a long miserable story short, the tank been in a state of constant cycling for the last 12 months. This has delayed me buying any coral or fish as I didn’t want to waste my time and money if I couldn’t get it right. So I recently decided enough is enough - either do it properly or don't do it at all.

 

 

 

 

MAIO v2:

 

 

Before starting this project I have realised the importance of knowing clearly what I want to achieve versus working it out along the way. Simply saying "I want corals in a tank" just doesn’t cut it, and looking at some of the beautiful tanks out there, the common theme appears to be the forethought that went into getting it there. Now understanding the limitations of a AIO tank with a rear sump chamber and moderate T5 lighting means that some things are just not possible. So the plan is the following:

 

  • The tank will be a mixed reef to a degree (SPS/LPS)
  • The live rock will be removed or repositioned to accommodate the original plan of being able to easily clean all four sides of the tank
  • The top tier of the tank will be dedicated to easy to care for SPS colonies, a few at most in contrasting colours (to account for the lower PAR until the lights upgraded)
  • The next tier will be left for encrusting/plating corals with lower light requirements
  • The bottom tier will be for low light, soft corals /LPS, preferably non evasive but once again in low numbers to allow them to highlight each other and allow for growth
  • The sand will remain clear of corals
  • The single clown will remain ( my Wife bought it for our daughter)
  • Fish will be purchased to be appropriate to the size of the tank; at the moment considering a small hawk fish, a blenny (or Mandarin if the wife gets her way) and maybe something else depending on peoples suggestions and availability

 

As I am not looking to replicate a reef look 100% and are more interested in the aqua scaping the tank I want the tank to be very clean, with an emphasis on the colours that can be achieved in a marine tank. This means I am aiming for top notch filtration and cant afford to crash the tank every time the power goes off. Plus I haven's spent all this money to just look at algae! It is for that reason I have decided to use the ZEOvit methodology, as it allows me to run the sump with no refugium, although I have made allowances for a small refugium if required. For this style of filtration to work the AIO needs to become a true MAIO:

 

  • A sump needs to be added to the system - Completed 16/01/13
  • The sump needs to be small enough to allow for all the other equipment to fit into the cabinet as well to keep it out of reach of kids - Completed 16/01/13
  • The Turboflotor needs to be relocated to the sump - Completed16/01/13
  • If possible, replace the pump on the 9002 and add it to the sump as well - Completed 11/01/13
  • Add a ATO to the sump, with a reservoir large enough to last a week - Completed 30/01/13
  • Build a siphon system that it power out proof - Completed 20/01/13
  • Use a float switch to control return pump so as to not overflow main tank with ATO - Completed 20/01/13
  • Build a DIY Zeolite reactor to accommodate for the shortage of space - Completed 12/01/13
  • A heater controller needs to be purchased along with a second back up heater
  • Add a DIY power centre to the cabinet to keep wires out of reach - Completed 30/01/13
  • May have to add a small fan to the sump running off heater controller until lights upgraded to LED
  • Look at adding a simple reef controller to automate some of the timers in the system - mid/late 2013

 

Once that is taken care of, I need to work out how to mange the ZEOvit system going forward:

 

  • Find a local (AUS) supplier of ZEOvit products -Completed 12/02/13
  • Determine what products to use - basic 4 to begin with -Completed 12/02/13
  • Calculate starting dose rates (as per pdf?) -Completed 12/02/13
  • Look into the possibility of automating the dosing - mid/late 2013
  • Setup an log to track dosing and performance
  • Determine what to feed and when

 

Hopefully once this is all working smoothly I will have my slice of the ocean in our lounge room. I will try and keep this post up to date with photos and information as I make changes to the system, so sit back, relax and enjoy the show! Feel free to ask questions and offer suggestions as I am by no means an expert.

 

Cheers Colin

 

Updated 31/01/13 - updated build links

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Spirofucci

Nice score on the RSM! There are quite a few of them on here and all of them are modded differently. I'm sure you've seen it but if not there is an RSM thread in the AIO section.

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metrokat

You might want to click my tank links in my signature. I refuse to give up my stock RSM lights. My tank has abundant thriving SPS,

Including delicate acroporas like Nasuta, tort, tennuis and every other kind of coral, even a clam.

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ViralEntity

Thanks guys :D

 

The main idea behind the LED's is the heat, although I guess I didnt mention that. I have a chiller, but because of the noise and lack of cabinet space I don't want to have to use it. Living in the southern part of Australia the temperature is too inconsistant to just rely on the heater alone. Today is supposed to be 40°C (104°F) but 5 days ago is was raining and 16°C (60°F)!

 

metrokat, I did notice your tank journal from back when I was drooling over Nano tanks - from memory you had added LED strips to supplement the stock lighting. Incredible results, however the strips are worth a small fortune verus ~$250 for a complete replacement kit. It does mean more hacking of the tank but I guess I crossed that bridge a while back :blink:

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ViralEntity

The Start of Something Big

 

 

We cant have a project like this without some before and after shots. So without further ado here is the tank as it looks now:

 

FTS:

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LHS:

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RHS:

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As you can see, not much is happening. I have good coralline growth and I have allowed the macro at the back to grow to keep the phosphate's in the tank down so its gets trimmed every so often. The orange mushrooms hitchhiked in on a small piece of LR, and the small plate coral on the sand was a gift from my wife along with the small clown fish. I won't bore you with a shot of the equipment at the moment as if you have seen one AIO you have seen them all. I must take a moment to apologise for the photo's - I am using my iPhone 4S, so I may need to add getting a decent camera to my list!

 

So far I have moved the rockwork forward about an inch to make cleaning easier, but other than that this is Day One!

 

Cheers Colin

 

Edit: I apologise for any issues with the photos, PhotoBucket is giving me the #%^@ at the moment...

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ViralEntity

Fixing my Tunze 9002

 

A little bit of digging and it turns out my Tunze 9002 has a busted pump. It trips out the breakers as soon as it is plugged, something my wife wasn’t too impressed by. At the time I simply replaced the unit as I had a real cheap deal on a brand new Turboflotor Blue 500, which so far I feel is a much better skimmer than the 9002. It also fits in the back of the RSM130 with a bit of coaxing, but is just as sensitive to the water level in the rear chamber. Micro bubbles is another a issue I feel the Turboflotor caused in the back of the RSM130 due to the output side of the skimmer having to hang above the baffle leading to the return chamber. Modifying the return pumps would most likely rectify this problem.

 

Anyway back on topic, when I spent a bit of time looking online it appears that the Tunze model has changed in the last few years. One of the changes is a different pump than the original 9002 model. Quieter and more efficient it is also not backwards compatible if you are lucky enough to have a older 9002. Guess I'm really lucky :P

 

So I set about trying to modify the 9002 to accommodate a non Tunze pump. The closest I could come to with the same flow and dimensions was a small Eheim pump, but the pump face is different so the output had to be modified as shown below. A simple piece of hose was all that was need to mate the new pump to the skimmer body.

 

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As this extended the new pump outside of the body of the skimmer I used a couple of small cable ties to attach the new pump to the skimmer body and didn't bother using the base plate.

 

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And there we have it - the Tunze 9002 up and running!

 

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Edit - I have since learnt that the newer Tunze pump can be made to fit with a dremel and a bit of patience.

Edited by ViralEntity

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ViralEntity

DIY ZEOvit reactor

 

When I decided to use the ZEOvit system in place of refugium/macro algae nutrient export I saved myself a bit of space in the cabinet, however I required a ZEOvit reactor for it to work properly. For the tank volume I didn’t need a large volume of Zeolite so I was looking at modifying a small fluidising filter but after looking at the prices and sizes available I decided to give DIY a shot. Now as a disclaimer I must admit that DIY and I don’t mix at the best of times so keep that in mind. That said, it also means that if I can do it any one 5yrs and up can probably do it too :P

 

The first trick was finding a cylinder that would fit in the return chamber as I had to stay under 3 inches in diameter. I toyed with the idea of using PVC pipes with and end cap but wasn’t happy with the way it looked. So I went to a local plastic wares outlet looking for a narrow plastic container of some sort.

 

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I ended up with a cheap $1 jug made of a slightly flexible plastic. It fit snuggly into the chamber so won't fall over if knocked and was easy to cut and shape with my limited skills. I removed the handle and later an inch from the top to stop the overflow from funnelling out the spout. I cut a hole in the side near the bottom just wide enough to wedge in a small piece of PVC pipe and then placed a T piece on the inside of the jug to disperse the flow a bit more. The T also was to act as a spacer to the sieve piece later on.

 

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On the out side I used a 90° elbow and a short length of tube to raise the inlet height for easy maintenance, and wedged a small threaded and barbed ball valve into the end. This is the only piece that I glued, so that I can easily take it apart if it needs to be cleaned, plus its in the sump so it doesn’t matter if it leaks slightly.

 

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As this isn't a fluidising system, all the water needs to do is flow through the Zeolite and overflow out the top, but it does need to be stirred or mixed daily to dislodge the mulm that build up. To do this I grabbed an old sheet of plastic (in this case the bottom of an old washing basket) and traced the top of the jug onto it. A pair of scissors and a hot screw driver later and I had a lovely dispersion plate for the reactor.

 

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I then used a small PVC joiner to attach a short length of pipe to the plate.

 

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This became the handle with the help of another T piece.

 

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And the final completed reactor in its final resting place

 

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All up it cost me $7 in materials but that is without a pump. The total flow is only 100lph so a pump isn't really necessary, as a small valve could be added to any feed line, from a skimmer or return or even the tank itself. The only requirement I am aware of is that it is placed after the skimmer(s) in the system so that the mulm is removed before it can be of use to the tank inhabitants.

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ViralEntity

Bad news - while topping off the tank with RO water today I left the cabinet door open. I turned my back for two seconds only to see my 2yr old reaching inside, so I dropped everything and ran over expecting the worse but thankfully she hadnt touched anything. When I went to pick her up I noticed that our new kitten had climbed inside and thats what she was after.

 

That was the where things took a turn for the worse. While holding my daughter in one hand, I reached down and tried to grab the kitten with the other hand. As I pulled her out I hooked a wire and pulled the ATO and my MP10 controller off the velco mounts and they dropped to the bottom of the cabinet. Except the ATO fell into the container of RO water.... I then promptly swore, freaked out and managed to knock the jug of water over, drowning the power supply for the MP10 and tripping the breakers.

 

So far I have confirmed that I have cooked the MP10 power pack and the ATO works but the IR senser (Tunze model) doesn't seem to be switching off the pump once the water hits the right level. Replacing either or both of these will probably chew up the money I had aside for the lighting upgrade but I guess thats life :angry:

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ViralEntity

Adding a Small Sump to a RSM130

 

When I decided to add a sump my first thoughts were of the Lifereef sumps and overflows. It seems they are fairly standard when it comes to the RSM130's and I have yet to read of anyone having any issues. Getting a sump shipped back to here was crazy expensive and although achievable I just couldn’t warrant the cost at this point. The other issue was where to put all the hardware and ATO tank once the cabinet was full as with a young daughter and another one less than a few weeks away I didn’t want to risk losing the tank or a child!

 

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So I decided to make the sump more of a holding chamber than an extension of the tank. It would need to fit in about half the area of the cabinet and simply allow me to get all the hardware out of the back of the tank for easier maintenance, while allowing me to fit the existing hardware in the other side of the cabinet. I found an old 30l tank that was left over from our fry grow out room and added 3 baffles to keep the water height at the correct level. Space is that tight with a tank this small that there are no bubble baffles at all, something I hope I don’t have issue with in the future. The first compartment is a small chamber for the overflow to enter. Next is the largest section, which will hold both skimmers for the time being. This was the most restrictive part, as it needs to be quite deep due to the two skimmers requiring such a deep profile. It will also hold any other equipment that I may add such as heaters. The last section has to be wide enough to hold the return pump, which is a second hand pump from a box in the shed - it works and that’s all that counts at the moment - but it isn't exactly quiet. I also made it just wide enough to hold a standard size nano reactor (Two Little Fishes) or my DIY ZEOvit reactor.

 

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This is where I encountered the first issue - due to the height of the second chamber, the tank at normal running holds about 25l. That doesn’t allow much space if the top tank decides to drain back into the sump. So this meant that a lot of thought had to go back into changing the design of the overflow and also ruled out the possibility of using the Lifereef overflow with my sump. It also means that the water level in the tank has to be at a higher level so I have to be cautious of overflowing the main tank as well as the sump now. If can ever figure out how to get it here without breaking the bank I would definitely consider buying the Lifereef sump, skimmer and overflow and use the refugium as a frag tank, but that may be a project for next year.


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As much as it pains me to say it, I have yet to figure out how to safely add mechanic filtration to the setup. Currently I have no filter wool or sock in place in the sump, although I can fit it in the back of the tank in the InTank media rack but I have no doubt that this will cause chaos as it blocks up and changes the water height in the main tank. So until I can sort out some easy way of adding a filter sock to the sump I will run without any mechanic filtration - I am open to suggestions! Salt spray was my next issue but for the moment I have fixed it by using the top half of a plastic bottle, as seen below, to smother the intake line with 3 or four small breather holes around the top half to stop it burping and gurgling.

 

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One advantage of the cheap and nasty return pump is that it had two outlets on the pump head. I don't know why it does, but it has allowed me to feed one line to the ZEOvit reactor and the other to the tank as a return line. Its not overly neat but it works and by adding a small ball valve to the return line I have complete control over the flow in both streams. One thing to remember is that adjusting the flow of one line affects the other, so any tweaking had to be done slowly. I also mounted my ATO sensors into this chamber and used my DIY magnet mount to put the overflow warning float switch on the top edge of the tank. This means that when the sump balances out after a power out it doesn’t trigger the alarm prematurely.

 

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Once again the sump design caused me grief with the return chamber only holding ~5l. Add to this that the difference in the pump running dry and the carpet having a bath is less than 2 inches and you can see that the ATO has a big job ahead. During this burn in process I reckon I am losing between 1 - 2 litres to evaporation every 48hrs while in the middle of our summer.

 

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All said and done, so far the sump has been running for 3 days hooked up to the tank and it looks promising. A few minor hiccups here and there (like killing my MP10/ATO and drowning the carpet) but overall I am happy for my first DIY attempt. A big thanks to the numerous forums posts and tank builds I have borrowed ideas from!

 

Cheers Colin

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opaquelace

This is probably one of my favorite rock scapes that I've seen. Great job! I love the RSM tanks. You can't beat the convenience of an all-in-one.

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ViralEntity

This is probably one of my favorite rock scapes that I've seen. Great job! I love the RSM tanks. You can't beat the convenience of an all-in-one.

 

Thanks!

 

All-in-ones are great - but it seems that aren't any that are just plug and play when it comes to a full blown reef setup. It surprises me as it's not like these companies don't have access to the technology. They always seem to be short on flow, lighting and filtration and a few changes are all thats needed to make it work. If I could find an AIO that is as neatly packaged as the RSM with Reef grade lighting, setup for dosing/kalk etc, a decent skimmer/sump and adequet flow it would nearly always be the cheaper option to buy than DIY.

 

Hopefully I will get a chance to update the build today as I have installed the overflow and have tested it out, as well as started on upgrading the power center to replace the broken RSM one, but as we just had our second child yesterday this week might be a bit hectic!

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TeflonTomDosh

Maybe I missed it, but what'd ya do about the crack?

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ViralEntity

Maybe I missed it, but what'd ya do about the crack?

 

So far nothing. If you look closely at the top FTS you can see the crack in the glass in the back ground near the return pump, but it so far appears to be mainly cosmetic. Because I would have to drain the tank to under 2/3 and the let it dry it just seems like too much work. I am worried that the crack is growing as the tank moves.

 

Hopefully it holds out for a year or so before it reaches the side of the tank as I can't afford a new tank yet!

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mattclark82

Looks awesome, but wow, what a very eventful build thus far.

 

I had to shackle and lock my fish tank cabinets from the little one. She would feed my FW tanks one can of flake at a time, and then started catching them with a net and moving them from one tank to another.

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ViralEntity

Aren't kids fun?

 

Your right it has been eventful, but nothing that has happened has been unavoidable. If I had taken this approach from the start and not rushed into it I would have a lovely reef tank to enjoy, instead of rocks and wet carpet :P

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C4PZL0K

Congratulations on the baby. I was wondering if its possible to run the Red Sea Max 130D without any skimmer? I don't keep any fish so I wouldn't really need a skimmer, but I'm not sure if taking the skimmer out would mess up the water flow. I've never seen a RSM in person. Thanks

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ViralEntity

Thanks we now have another beautiful baby girl!

 

As for the RSM without a skimmer, yes it can be done quite easily as that is essentaily how my tank is running now. From a reefing point of view, maybe someone with a bit more experience can comment, but from everything I have read and seen although it can be done without a skimmer it is more beneficial to run a skimmer to ensure the water quality stays high, not to mention the benefit of adding oxygen to the water.

 

Plus the RSM comes with a skimmer (although it receives mixed reviews) so its probably easier to just leave it in.

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ViralEntity

DIY PVC Overflow

 

Ok so it turns out building a sump isn't the hard part - its getting the water from a tempered glass tank to the sump while filled with water with 2 inches of space behind the tank…

With drilling not an option, the next best thing was a premade overflow. CPR ones are cheap but aren't built for the tank and the reviews didn’t leave much to the imagination and I wasn't going to risk my carpets on an eBay model. The most common ones used are the Lifereef ones, and to be honest I havent read a negative comment anywhere. But as I explained in the sump build, this isn't an option until I change the sump over to a bigger one.

 

It was then that I stumbled upon this post on a DIY cheap PVC overflow (http://www.reefcentral.com/forums/showthread.php?t=503664). Now the one in the forum is a tad overly complicated for what I needed so I effectively used half of it. Without going into all the gory details I have a couple of photos below that explain the basics, but if requested I can go into further detail.

 

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I then spent a week testing the overflow for various issues, but as long as the siphon remains the system continues to work. However, once the siphon breaks say by air getting into the overflow, the end result is a big flood. I tried using a venturi outlet on the return pump linked to a airline at the top of the overflow to help restart the siphon if it does break but the flow from the return isn't fast enough to create enough suction via the venturi. Actually it might be hampered by the ball valve slightly further up the line but either way I couldn’t get it to work effectively enough.

 

My other option was a overflow cut off float switch in the back of the tank. After a bit of internet searching, I found a simple diagram of a solid state relay being used to control a 240v outlet. Now I am not promoting DIY electrical work so I got my brother to do the wiring and we used a old doorbell as the shell to hold the relay and help keep moisture out. An old Nokia wall charger was used to provide the 5v control and all in all it came up rather neat. In future I will use a controller to do the same job, but at $25 it will do for now.

 

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All in all, the system works. The overflow switch ensures that the pump can't out pace the siphon so fingers crossed we don’t have any more accidents.

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ViralEntity

Well another busy week has come and gone. I have had to delay a completing the new power center as I need a couple hours of uninterupted time, which I am currently spending trying to catch up on sleep and this means the sump hasn't been fired up yet either.

 

I have a few hours free tomorrow so that should make all difference :D

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ViralEntity

Power Center upgrade

 

As I mentioned in my first post, not long after I started using the RSM, the switches in the power board that is built into the side of the tank shorted out. I found a few replacements online, but the cost and shipping was in the hundreds, and to be honest the six power points weren't enough. Another issue with the layout is that no transformers can fit, nor can any plug adapters (i.e. UK to AU ).

 

I started using some cheap individually switched power boards as you can see in the post about adding the sump. I had stuck these to the inside of the cabinet using velcro adhesive strips to make them easy to remove for maintenance, however the combined weight of the transformers and plugs meant that on hot days the power boards had a tendency to fall off the side which is potentially very dangerous now that there is water in the cabinet. It also looks really cheap, and the wires are a complete mess as no two pieces of equipment has the same length lead!

 

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While working my way through the forums here the other week I stumbled across a ripper idea in a really nice build by Jamie. Here is a link to the post showing what he had done with the help of some really short extension leads - Jamies 13.3G. This idea was great but for me the leads are short enough that the plugs will still hang off the power boards so I went a step further and used full sized leads - 10x 3 meter to be exact. I then used liquid nails to mount the power boards more permanently and a couple meters of cable channelling stuck to the walls to hide the leads and make it look neat and tidy. This would allow me to mount the power plugs in the cabinet next to the tank (Ikea FTW) and have the extension leads plugged into the power boards.

 

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I then labelled each end of the power lead with the socket it was plugged into so that I could identify the other end of the lead in the cabinet next to the tank. I cable tied the end plugged into the board so that it folded neatly back onto itself and feed the leads one at a time into the channelling. I then used cable guides to arrange the other end of the cables into the tub.

 

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Each set of leads from each power board was then cable tied together to make it neat and snag free behind the tank.

 

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On the other side I used the same channelling to run all the leads from the equipment in the sump into the same tub next to the tank. Now all I did was assign each device a number and plugged it into the corresponding numbered extension lead. Any excess power lead is neatly bundled and cable tied behind the tank.

 

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In future all I have to do is place a simple child lock on the tub and the kids will never be able to reach any power leads or transformers. All in all I was very surprised and happy at both how it looks and just how easy it was to do. I didn’t have to cut one lead or change any plugs, yet the entire thing looks like it has been made to fit.

 

IMG_0342_zps738dfd83.jpg

 

Once again a big thanks to the numerous people (especially Jamie) who have detailed their builds as I couldn't do it without them!

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ViralEntity

Hmmm my KH is sooooo low - I hope its due to no water change for the last month!

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ViralEntity

3 weeks since the arrival of our daughter and to say the upgrade has stalled is an understatement! I havent had a chance to replace the MP10 power supply, or get the ATO up and running so I am topping off up to 1.5l a day manually (seems a bit excessive but it is the middle of a heat wave here at the moment).

 

I am also noticing that due to running the tank at such a high level that the 130D surface skimmer isn't working and salt is creeping through the hood at an alarming rate. So bad that I am going to have to spend the rest of the day cleaning down the hood before it causes any serious damage. I have a couple hours this afternoon so I will look at lowering the water level in the back of the tank, but this will increase the amount of water I need to be able to hold in sump - at the moment I have 1inch to spare but I have my doubts that I can squeeze in more water.

 

I have contacted my brother in law who is a plumber and have asked him to look into a powered solonoid to place on the siphon line to the sump, that is normally closed when no power is applied. My hope is that when the power fails the soloniod will close and stop the tank draining into the sump. This allows me to run the top tank at its normal levels without fear of it flooding my little sump.

 

Wish me luck!

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ViralEntity

OK so lowering the height in the back was simple enough. I added a 90° elbow to the top of the overflow in place of a taller connector piece and the water height dropped by about an inch. Straight away the surface skimmer started working and the water level in the display lowered enough to not be touching the top edge.

 

To test this I turned off all the power to the tank and here I ran into trouble. The water level in the sump slowly increased to the top of the sump and with 2 mm to go I fired the pumps back up before it would flood the carpet. It might have been ok, but its going to be close either way. Hopefully if the power goes off and it does overflow it will only just overflow. I'm considering putting a cheap $10 flood sensor in the cabinet just in case.

 

So its going to come down to either a soloniod or a new sump in the not too distant future..... its not like I have anything better to do with my money :-)

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ViralEntity

Ok so on a happy topic for once - I have finally started my ZEOvit adventure.

 

After finding an awesome supplier in Aus, I bit the bullet and bought a starter kit for ZEOvit. I have spent quite a few hours trawling through the ZEOvit forums looking for the right dosing plan to start with, but it seems that in the end the tank will let me know what is too much or too little. So I have started by following the instructions in the ZEOvit guide for a new and unestablished tank, as I really don't have a heavily stocked tank and I can always increase if required.

 

Here is a link to my dosing schedule - MAIO Dosing

 

Its fairly heavy to start with until the system settles in, but I am really excited!

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RollaJase

I really liked how you ended up doing the wireing in the sump, very clean. I like these red sea AIO tanks, my LFS has one set up as a display and I have to admit, they do look pretty slick once they are all up and running and well stocked.

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