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My 29 Gallon Biocube Build/Log


amoore311

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After coasting for the better part of 2 years, I have sold off my larger system and have a bit of a rekindled love for the hobby again.

The drain of home ownership and a new baby on the way completely killed my desire for a larger tank. The large tank is gone now, replaced by my new 28 Gallon Biocube!

I've been keeping reef tanks for the better part of a decade, but I don't have too much experience with a small tank. I've got the basics, and even some advanced stuff down pretty well. I will need assistance with the more "nano focussed" topics and information though.

Anyways here is where I am now, and where I'd like to head. If you notice anything odd, or something I'm missing... please by all means point it out.

Equipment Currently Set up and In Use
-2 Month old 29 Gallon Biocube + Homemade stand I purchased off craiglist

-StevesLed.com Extreme SPS Retrofit. (Pre-assembled by vendor)
18- Royal Blue Luxeon ES 3 watt LEDs

10- 5,000K Neutral White Luxeon ES 3 watt LEDs

- Brand New Cobalt MJ1200 Return
-150 Watt Titanium heater with temp probe and controller

Equipment Waiting to be Set Up
-Neptune Apex (Full Apex w/ the VDM Included)
-More Circulation??
-Intank Media and Fuge Baskets are shipping out to me today
-Aqualifter Pump + Float Switches for ATO


Fish/Corals/etc
-My 10 year old pair of Percula Clowns.
-Skunk Cleaner Shrimp
-Zebra Turbo Snail

-12-15 Dwarf Cerith Snails

-4-5 Green hairy mushrooms literally on deaths doorstep.
- ~30#'s of well seasoned live rock. Bare Bottom.


I plan on adding fish and corals once I know the tank is stable. Fish wise I will end up with 5-7 peaceful fish, and a tank primarily dominated by an anemone....LPS Corals, and zoas. I will be going with a couple clams as well down the road.

I had to get this tank set up quickly as I needed to have a home for my clowns. With them being over 10 years old, I couldn't simply get rid of them. That being said I moved 30ish pounds of live rock to Biocube before braking the old system down. I started with 100% new salt water, I use oceanic salt. Everything has been doing great since I moved them over on Friday.


Where I need help:

Circulation: What do you guys/gals recommend in addition to the MJ1200 Return? I have experience with Ecotech Vortech Pumps in the past. Maybe a single MP10? What about Tunzes? i know they are great pumps but I've never used them. Any suggestions on Tunze powerheads to research? Finally... whats the deal with these Jebao pumps?

I'd like the pump to be controlled by the Apex. I know I can do that with the Vortech's and Tunzes, how about the Jebao pumps?

Lighting: I like the StevesLED.com Upgrade, but I'd like to tweak the spectrum if it isn't too difficult. How hard would it be to switch some of the already existing LED's out for different colors? Any suggestions here? My previous light on my 100 Gallon was a Reef Breeders Photon. That one was also only White/Blue, and TBH i'm bored with that.

Also, I need to get these lights hooked up to my controlled. Does anyone have any info or first hand knowledge on how to set up a Steve'sLED Biocube retrofit to run off an APEX Controller? The installed dials will not dim to 0%... so I need to keep unplugging the darn thing.

I want full Apex functionality for these lights with custom dimming for sunrise/sunset, etc. Help lol!

Cooling: I notice the tank runs 3-4 degrees above ambient with the hood completely closed. The supplied fan with the Steve'sLED kit is great, but I noticed it is not on all the time. Would installing a second fan that runs when the lights are on help at all? Not even sure where the heck to put another fan.

 

Top Off: For simplicity, I'd like to dose saturated Kalk in my ATO. Any +/-'s to doing this in a smaller set up? My ATO will be a couple gallon resevoir of kalk saturated RODI. It will be controlled by float switches hooked up to my Apex through a Breakout Box. The pump will be a basic aqualifter.

I do have 2 Bulk Reef Supply Drews Dosing Pumps I can use for Calc/Alk supplementation later on. I'd like to keep it to just Kalk until I NEED to dose CA/ALK/MG however.

Finally..... any tips for taking pictures of LED lit tanks. The reason I don't have any photos is because they all come out looking like a tank full of windex lol.

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