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theishkid

theishkid's CAD Lights 34G Mini-II

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theishkid

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Background

My name is Brad and I'm from Moore, Oklahoma. I've ran a couple reef tanks in the past but took a six year break from the hobby when I got married and moved into our new home. I didn't have room for my large tank anymore so I just shut it down and sold everything. I'm getting back into the hobby now and trying to go a little more simple.

 

Wet Day

July 29, 2014

Early August

Mid August

Late August

August 29, 2014 - It's Wet!

 

The Tank

I am very limited in space so I decided to go with a CAD Lights 34G Mini-II tank.

http://www.cadlights.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=46&products_id=270

 

The Space

The space the tank is going (the only small free space in the whole house) is very small. I actually wanted an IM Fusion 30L (36" long) but did not have the space for it by a couple of inches. The CAD tank at 30" really is perfect for the area. In case it's not clear, the tank will be going next to a couch, but also right next to the walkway from the living room to the kitchen.

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The Stand

I wasn't very thrilled with the cheap stand offered by CAD, and for the cost of the expensive stand I could have it built and customized to my specs. One of the stipulations of putting a tank in this locations was that we would have to lose the end table next to the couch but my wife wanted an area that someone could put a cup down if they were sitting there. So my friend is going to build in some slides similar to the picture below that I can put testing equipment on as well as drinks for someone that is sitting next to the tank. We're also going to put the same cabinet doors and drawer faces that are in the house, as well as using the same pulls, knobs, and stain that is used on the existing wood work.

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Stand Update (8-23-14) - The stand is complete!

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Lighting

I went with one of Dave's lights from NanoBox Reef. I did a Quad with limes, dedicated moonlight, and the new Bluefish controller.

 

Build List (10-9-14)

I'm pretty much done with my build now… There are still a few more items I might buy later on but this is the build/cost list I used for my build.

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Other/Updates (10-9-14)

I'm basically done until November when I will start adding more corals. Now that the tank is fully built I want the tank to stabilize for a few months before I add any delicate corals.

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JR!

excited over here.

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theishkid

FedEx called me... they put my tank on the wrong truck. One truck was suppose to make local deliveries, the other one went to Ft Worth. They mixed the trucks up and didn't realize till the driver was almost there. Ooops!

Tank delivery rescheduled to tomorrow.

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GTi

Bummer. I guess tomorrow isn't too bad! Give everything a good check over tomorrow to make sure you have all the parts.

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JDH

Glad you finally decided on a tank! :P Good choices.

 

Depdnding if you have all your equipment/ATO etc. It may be a good idea to get the tank wet before your trip. Whaaat?! You may be asking yourself, well... it gives some time to go through the boring-ass cycle while your away. Something to consider maybe?

 

Bummer on FedEx. I seem to have luck like yours too :lol::closedeyes:

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theishkid

Glad you finally decided on a tank! :P Good choices.

 

Depdnding if you have all your equipment/ATO etc. It may be a good idea to get the tank wet before your trip. Whaaat?! You may be asking yourself, well... it gives some time to go through the boring-ass cycle while your away. Something to consider maybe?

 

Bummer on FedEx. I seem to have luck like yours too :lol::closedeyes:

I might do that... It's been on my mind. It really just depends on if the stand gets done before we leave. I just hate to leave everything on when we'll be gone for over a week. I plan on putting a webcam on my tank through the bluefish controller but didn't plan on doing that for a couple months after it was up and running.

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JDH

I might do that... It's been on my mind. It really just depends on if the stand gets done before we leave. I just hate to leave everything on when we'll be gone for over a week. I plan on putting a webcam on my tank through the bluefish controller but didn't plan on doing that for a couple months after it was up and running.

 

Hah, I understand. I know cycles are boring yet exciting. I guess being away 6 years, you'll want to have the full experience.

 

The battery backup on your list, were you thinking Ecotech - or was that for the air pump?

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theishkid

The battery backup on your list, were you thinking Ecotech - or was that for the air pump?

I might go the Ecotech route, but in all honesty I was just thinking of going with a standard 1500 watt computer type backup. I keep hearing about the Ecotech lasting 72 hrs with an mp10 but I haven't heard what the actual battery is inside it.

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Dramad1

Only thing I Don't like about the batt back up is, when I do my weekly water changes and turn off the mp10, the back up kicks on and I have to unplug the mp10 from the back up to turn the pump off. Other wise I get the suction/air bubble mod from pump being to close to the top of the water. I have been thinking of getting the pico guard to solve this issue.

wet day is my b day. Ha ha. Looking forward to seeing your build progress

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JDH

I might go the Ecotech route, but in all honesty I was just thinking of going with a standard 1500 watt computer type backup. I keep hearing about the Ecotech lasting 72 hrs with an mp10 but I haven't heard what the actual battery is inside it.

 

Alls I know is it works! It saved my butt a few times with power outages from the intense summer storms we get here. I have heard or people going the UPS type route as well though.

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theishkid

Yea a backup of some type is definitely going to be a must with all the tornados we get around here!

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GTi

 

I might go the Ecotech route, but in all honesty I was just thinking of going with a standard 1500 watt computer type backup. I keep hearing about the Ecotech lasting 72 hrs with an mp10 but I haven't heard what the actual battery is inside it.

There's an IP phone battery back up out there you can pick up for $40-$50 on EBay and an adapter that makes it a plug and play with the Ecotech pumps and lights. I can recall the details off the top of my head but unpicked on up a couple of months ago and will be setting it up in the next few days. The benefit is is uses the MP10 DC input port and is more efficient than converting DC to AC to DC. It doesn't last as long as the Ecotech back up but is a lot cheaper. LMK if you want more details and I'll try to remember to post details in my thread.

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Nanofreak79

Excited to see this one.

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theishkid

Well... the tank arrived...

I did a thorough inspection and found a couple of small chips. One on the side bottom and one on the bottom piece of glass.

I'm really ticked off... part of me says it's no big deal, then the other half says, you just spend $500 bucks it better be perfect.

 

Here's the one on the side/bottom glass.

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And here's the one on the bottom glass.

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And here's some scratches up top...

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GTi

I had some very similar issues with mine. Drop them a PM through this site. PM seems to work better than email. Inform them what problems you have and propose a solution; they are a decent bunch of guys and will take care of it but it might take a bit of nudging from you. Good luck!

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theishkid

I'm waiting to hear back from CAD… hopefully they'll just send me a new tank without any hassles. After sleeping on it I don't really want to mess with any discounts or anything like that. This just isn't the tank I would have taken home if it was available at my LFS.

 

In other news I thought I would give some initial impressions of the tank...

The tank is beautiful. The glass is crystal clear and the beveled edges on top are very nice! The tank is weirdly bigger and smaller than I was expecting… That sounds weird to say and my wife said I was crazy when I was telling her about it on the phone… Then she came home and was like… "yea you're right, that's weird". Right now I don't have a stand for it, so I think once it gets up higher and filled it will feel bigger. But when I look at it it makes me wonder how I'm going to do any rock scaping with such limited space since there is only about a foot, front to back.

 

The silicon on the tank was pretty good. There were a few "strings" here and there but nothing you wouldn't find on any other tank and I'm sure a razor would take them off cleanly. There was a little dust that has gotten under the vinyl on one of the corners and it's starting to peel up but since I sell vinyl decals that's no big deal for me...

 

The packaging from CAD is a little bit unique as well, and I'm mad at myself for not taking any pictures. They use a real thin layer of foam around the tank that seems to do the job okay. But inside the tank is where they put the glass top, the pump, sponges, and glass top clips, as well as anything extra you ordered like a skimmer in my case. It was interesting to open it up and just see a pump sitting there. There's nothing wrong with that… I would have just expected it to be in a box or wrapped up or something. And then there were five little clips (I think I'm missing one) for holding the glass top I believe just randomly thrown in along with the sponges and they were in all the different compartments. Again, non of this really matters, but I guess I'm just use to Apple packaging so it was a little weird just seeing all of this stuff sitting in there.

The skimmer is also kind of weirdly packaged. The box is about twice the size it needs to be and there was a ton of foam padding pieces inside. That pump was wrapped up inside the box.

 

All in all… I'm excited to get going on this build. I just hope I don't get any flack from CAD about them sending me a different tank.

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Nanofreak79

That stinks about the scratches. I'm sure they'll take care of it for you.

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GTi

The tank is weirdly bigger and smaller than I was expecting… That sounds weird to say and my wife said I was crazy when I was telling her about it on the phone… Then she came home and was like… "yea you're right, that's weird". Right now I don't have a stand for it, so I think once it gets up higher and filled it will feel bigger. But when I look at it it makes me wonder how I'm going to do any rock scaping with such limited space since there is only about a foot, front to back.

 

I know what you mean - the tank looks a lot bigger due to the length but there is little width to play with. Until you see it in person it's not immediately apparent.

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theishkid

Excellent customer service from CAD! They seem just as disappointed as I am about the tank.

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theishkid

Looking forward to seeing your build progress

Drama, after seeing the size of this tank… I really want to see what that NanoBox Duo looks like over your CAD now! It just seems like the Quad would be too big, but maybe not...

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Dramad1

Nah the duo is to small. The 24" duo or quad would be your best bet. I'm running the 4x24x24" ati dimmable t5s and it fits over the tank perfectly.

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theishkid

Do you have much light spill?

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farkwar

Dang,

 

Just as I get almost ready to buy one, I always see reviews and evidence like this.

 

Back looking ADA ans Elos.

 

I have half a mind to just wait for Petco $ SALE and just buy up a few

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Dramad1

Nope not really. 8" off the water line and it all is directed in The tank. Full coverage all the way across.

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theishkid

Dang,

 

Just as I get almost ready to buy one, I always see reviews and evidence like this.

 

Back looking ADA ans Elos.

 

I have half a mind to just wait for Petco $ SALE and just buy up a few

Farkwar, the one thing I will say... and I know what you mean about seeing negative post, I was worried about it too... but Scott from CAD dealt with this very quickly and without any problems or hassles of them not wanting to replace the tank. I was worried that they were going to give me grief but there was none at all. He seemed genuinely as disappointed as I was about it.

 

I think anytime you don't pick up the tank from a LFS, you're going to run into the same potential problem. You don't get to see it in person, and you don't get to inspect it before you hand them your money and take it home. And that goes for a cheap marineland tank all the way to the elos and beyond.

 

Now as far as CAD forgetting to put things in the tank like a suction cup for the return pump, or forgetting to do this or that... well that's another story. But as far as a cracked/chipped tank... I don't fault them, especially since they are dealing with it.

 

It also helps that I'm not in a big rush.

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