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[BioCube 29] Existing Tank - New Year Mods Questions


otterbuff

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I have an existing BC29 that is doing well. I purchased it as-is several years ago and have basically been running it the same since I purchased it.

 

Lighting:

Replaced the stock lighting with Steve's LEDs and am very pleased with the look and the coral growth.

 

Chambers:

I removed the extra small wall in the Chamber 1 overflow.

Chamber 1 has the false floor in it still. Reading various websites, it appears it is best to remove the floor.

Chamber 1 has rock rubble in it from the false floor to the overflow. Reading various websites, it appears it is best to remove the rubble.

 

Chamber 2 has a CPR skimmer in it. In front of the skimmer I actually have Tetra Whisper BioBag (with carbon) to trap a lot of the gunk before it gets to the skimmer. Frankly, I am not impressed with the skimmer.

 

Chamber 3 has my heater in it and I removed the sponge. It also has a bag of phosban.

 

Tank

In the tank, I have HydorFlo rotating head that is showing its age. I really like the wave in the tank that it creates and moves my corals and they seem to react well to it. I also have a Hydor Nano 425 which I have on the glass under the return for flow and clear out any dead space along the back.

 

What is next/questions:

- I am considering removing the Chamber 1 floor (if possible in an established tank). What is the method of removing it in an established tank? How is it mounted in there?

- Should I remove the rock rubble?

- I am looking at InTank Media Basket with the intent using the levels for filter floss, purigen, and chemipure in place of my Chamber 2 skimmer. I am also considering getting the Fuge basket with the intent of growing chaeto in it with a small light.

 

Can I forgo the Fuge Basket and just let the chaeto grow free in the remaining open space of Chamber 2, plus a submersible light? I guess I would need to put the sponge back into #3 to keep the return pump clear.

 

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What is next/questions:

- I am considering removing the Chamber 1 floor (if possible in an established tank). What is the method of removing it in an established tank? How is it mounted in there? Yes, removal is a good idea, you have to pull/twist/yank it out of there.

- Should I remove the rock rubble? Yes, while it adds bio filtering it receives little flow and can traps detritus.

- I am looking at InTank Media Basket with the intent using the levels for filter floss, purigen, and chemipure in place of my Chamber 2 skimmer. Yes, the media basket is very nice, I highly recommend it and the media you listed. I am also considering getting the Fuge basket with the intent of growing chaeto in it with a small light. My personal opinion is that macro algae in such a small amount isn't going to provide much nutrient export, also having it after your chemical filtration will rob it of the nutrients you are trying to get it to consume.

 

Can I forgo the Fuge Basket and just let the chaeto grow free in the remaining open space of Chamber 2, plus a submersible light? I guess I would need to put the sponge back into #3 to keep the return pump clear. I wouldn't do it this way, use the fuge basket to keep it contained.

 

I have been using the AquaticLife mini 115 skimmer in chamber 1 for a year, after modification, break in and mucho patience it has been skimming gunk out, but it is a very wet skim. I also think that since it takes up 95% of the space in that chamber that it restricts water flow. I have ordered the Cadlight PLS-50 skimmer as an upgrade and to use on my next build. I plan on running it after the inTank media basket in chamber 2 but I am pretty certain it would fit in chamber 1 since it appears that the mounting bracket is included in the measurements.

 

If the Hydor Flo works well for your corals, simply replacing it with a new one might be your best option. For circulation you can go as crazy as your budget allows, another 425, a Jebao WP10, a Vortech MP-10. You could split the pump return and use 2 Hydor Flo's, but you might want a stronger return pump for that. I have a used old MP-10 on mine now and it works very well, but the bearings are worn and its pretty noisy. I have a Jebao WP10 on order, I love what I see on larger tanks with the bigger Jebao pumps and I hope it will work out for me.

 

Your ideas are almost all right on target for what has worked well for many other BioCubes.

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I use the Tunze 9002 skimmer with an inTank media basket in chamber 2. I also us chemi-pure elite, purigen and filter floss in it.

 

I removed the floor in chamber 1 and use CPR's nano media reactor with GFO to control phosphates as my tank is mostly SPS corals. It is a perfect fit, cost about $40 bucks.

CPR-TNANO.jpg

 

 

For flow, I used to have the Hydor-flo and it did an O.K. job, but eventually it would break down with the plastic gears, so I went with a Spinstream from InnovativeMarine and have been very happy with it.

spin-stream.jpg

I also replaced the stock return pump and replaced it with a Rio 6HF pump. It has more gph and produces less heat than the maxi-jets. And I also have an MP10 for increased flow through-out the tank.

 

Good Luck with your set-up and look forward to seeing some pics!

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I have the IM spinstream as well and have had no problems with it. With the MP-10 I didn't think it was worth running it so I put it on my Pico cube instead.

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