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TerribleLobster

IM Nuvo 20g Build Thread

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TerribleLobster

Build Thread!

 

Start Date: 7/31/2019

Most Recent Pic(12/14/19)

IMG_20191214_180315.thumb.jpg.2c0caf86a0524f707c220d94722af2fd.jpg

 

Hardware:

Tank: Innovative Marine Nuvo 20 AIO

Filters: 1 Media caddy, 1 200 micron filter sock, 15 lbs dry rock, 18 lbs live sand

Heating: 150 W heater

Cooling: AC Infinity AXIAL 1225 Fan - Amazon

Temp Controller: Inkbird controller

ATO: Tunze Osmolator 3155

RODI Unit: Liquagen 4 stage (tds of city water is around 45 originally)

Lighting: 1 Kessil a160 Blue with mounting arm

Lighting Controller: Kessil A series spectral controller

Return Pump: Stock ~250 gph

Testing: API nitrite, API Ammonia and API Phospate, Refractometer, American Marine PH Monitor and probe, Inkbird Temperature probe, Hanna Checker Alk, Salifert Ca, Salifert Mg

 

Possible additions: I want to add an MP10, but have been looking for a good deal on Craigslist. I may add an algae scrubber, they seem pretty hype. Dosing pumps may be needed once I dial in my corals needs.

 

Livestock:

Fish: 1 Clownfish, 1 Orchid Dottyback (deceased - jumped out of the tank the first day) 

Corals:

Softies: 1 rhodactis mushroom, 1 neon green toadstool leather,1 ricordea florida mushroom (orange), Utter Chaos Zoa, LA Lakers Zoa

LPS: 1 Aussie elegance coral, 1 Blastomussa Wellsi

SPS: 1 red montipora cap

Inverts: Rainbow Bubble Tip Anemone, Fire Shrimp, 1 astrea snail, 1 trochus snail, 1 narcissus snail

 

Maintenance: 

-25% weekly water changeover

-feed a variety of foods 

-Add a bit of phyto (not sure how helpful this actually is, probably will not purchase again)

 

Diary:

Update 1: Tank Startup - Used dry rock and live sand, in a previous tank I had gotten aptasia and it was a nightmare so I endeavored to keep this tank as pest free as possible. I have really liked the dry rock so far. I got dry rock with a nice purple finish and was able to cement it into a cool arch. I used the NYOS reef cement and it was a nightmare to mix though it did work in the end after much frustration. I originally wasn't planning on using a temperature controller but stumbled onto one for free and holy cow is this thing nice. 100% worth the 40 bucks it would have cost if I bought it. I used dr tim's one and only for cycling + ammonium chloride and was pleased. It wasn't instant, my tank still took about 20 days to cycle, but I could very clearly see the ammonia, nitrites and nitrates changing as I tested. 


Update 1: I added my first fish (clownfish) after a month and then added a piece of macro algae a week after. When I added the macro algae, it may have brought a pest because my fish started losing scales near his gills. I freshwater dipped him and treated the tank with prazi pro, thinking it could be flukes. He has been great ever since and the tank has been happy.

 

Update 2: I went to a Coral Farmers Market recently and picked up a few goodies. I want to see how a variety of corals will do in my tank so I got a Blastomussa Wellsi as well as two different kinds of Zoas. I probably will not add anymore coral for a while. I recently purchased a Hanna Checker for Alk and will be using Salifert test kits for testing Ca and Mg. I want to dial in where I'm at and get a handle on how levels change over time before adding anything else. The tank had some diatoms form. The sand is a bit browner now and there is some on the rockwork as well. I reduced the amount of time the light was on each day. I was at 12 hours which was way too much. I may reduce a bit further from 9 hours down to 8. I have a gradual ramp up throughout the day currently and keep the spectrum mostly blue. The Salinity and temperature have been extremely stable and Nitrates are remaining low week over week. Everything in the tank looks like it is doing well so far, though. I added a Rainbow Bubble Tip Anemone! I absolutely love anemones and a friend gave me a good price on a 1 Inch diameter foot. It has been a bit brown the first few days, hoping it colors up nicely after it gets over the shock of moving. My clown has not hosted it yet. The zoas are just doing ok. Not sure where in the tank to put them. They are open, but don't look as vibrant as at the store. I added an orchid dottyback, but he jumped out of the tank the first night 😞. I will need to get a lid if I want to keep any fish that are in danger of jumping.

 

I would love any feedback and suggestions.

Picture Appendix

First time adding water shot:

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IMG_20191214_093555.jpg

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billygoat

Hello and welcome to N-R! :welcome:

 

Very nice setup you've got going on here. Seems like you are going slowly and taking your time and that is always great to see. IM makes a quality aquarium and I'm excited to see where you take it. I'll be following along!

 

As for wavemakers, I use an MP10 myself and can recommend it. It's not cheap but it does a great job and I've had no problems so far after running one for 5 months or so.

 

What kind of future stocking plans do you have in mind? You mentioned you're not super interested in SPS, so does that mean more leathers and such are in your future? Or perhaps LPS like blastos?

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TerribleLobster

@billygoat I love the idea behind your Carrbiean tank, the many species of Macro Algae look great!

 

As far as corals/inverts go, my goal is to be able to house a bubble tip anemone and one of the yellow and blue torches. While I wait for the tank to establish more I will probably look for one or two more mushrooms as well as maybe a few species of zoas that I can keep on the rock island in the front. I hadn't actually planned on getting the montipora yet until the tank was more established but my gf got it and the elegance coral while I was on vacation :O. My Ca and Alk levels are a bit low for what it recommended for those so I may need to start dosing.

 

For fish, I am not sure yet. A few different things on my mind: Orchid Dottyback, Midas Blenny, Yellow Damsel.

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billygoat
12 hours ago, TerribleLobster said:

@billygoat I love the idea behind your Carrbiean tank, the many species of Macro Algae look great!

 

As far as corals/inverts go, my goal is to be able to house a bubble tip anemone and one of the yellow and blue torches. While I wait for the tank to establish more I will probably look for one or two more mushrooms as well as maybe a few species of zoas that I can keep on the rock island in the front. I hadn't actually planned on getting the montipora yet until the tank was more established but my gf got it and the elegance coral while I was on vacation :O. My Ca and Alk levels are a bit low for what it recommended for those so I may need to start dosing.

 

For fish, I am not sure yet. A few different things on my mind: Orchid Dottyback, Midas Blenny, Yellow Damsel.

Oh thanks for the compliment! 😁 It's always good to hear that other people are interested in my biotope.

 

If the elegance and monti are the only corals in your tank so far, you probably can get away with simply doing regular water changes to provide them with minerals and other trace elements for the time being. That being said, dosing is a good habit to get into because you're definitely going to have to do it at some point down the line, so getting going with that isn't a bad idea by any means. 😊 Maintaining steady alkalinity in particular will go a long way towards ensuring stability in your aquarium.

 

The orchid dottyback is my personal favorite of the fish you listed. They are quite hardy once established and very beautiful fish. Can't wait to see what you end up getting! 

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TerribleLobster

Question for the forum, I have an old SeaClone Protein Skimmer from 10 years ago. Is it worth putting it on this tank? I heard this design is pretty much useless as a skimmer and it really doesn't seem to be 100% necessary to have a skimmer on a 20 gallon anyways. 

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SliceGolfer

I run the IceCap K1 nano. Fits perfect in chamber two when you remove the magnetic collar.

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TerribleLobster
12 minutes ago, SliceGolfer said:

I run the IceCap K1 nano. Fits perfect in chamber two when you remove the magnetic collar.

Did anything change for you before and after using it?

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SliceGolfer

I pulled my cheato reactor offline a few months ago due to low nutrients. I do a 5 gallon water change every other week. Change prefilter poly 2x a week. I don’t run any media like carbon, purigen, etc. I do use Marinepure bioballs and good quality live rock (no dry rock when tank setup).

 

Adding the skimmer, I get a full cup of skimmate once a week. Tank looks cleaner, LPS is puffier, SPS is growing. Could be the skimmer, could be the tank stabilizing and maturing (going on 9 months old now). It surely doesn’t hurt running the skimmer in my opinion. I travel a lot for work, so having equipment like the skimmer helps me keep the tank where I want it while I’m away. 

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M&C

Any updates? Really like the scape.

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TerribleLobster
22 hours ago, M&C said:

Any updates? Really like the scape.

Thanks for asking 🙂

 

Things have been moving along nicely. Livestock is doing well and I added a lid so we don't have any more jumpers. I added two corals you can see the pics below. 

 

My main issue right now is I'm battling cyano/dinos or some mix of the two! Mainly just trying to keep my nitrates above 0 and manually removing the algae as frequently as I can. I tried a black out for 3 days but that was onlyIMG_20191101_183328.thumb.jpg.e79c5f10d771832288322be96d9d7ac0.jpgIMG_20191101_183337.thumb.jpg.abc782f551b8609437cc084a1dd89264.jpgIMG_20191101_183524.thumb.jpg.b70bc66c64703d63669158672bd8e998.jpg minimally successful. I added some pods from my other tank to this one to kickstart the population and then I am now raising the pH to see if elevated pH will help.

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M&C

Rough start man, sorry to hear that. Hopefully it's just "new tank" syndrome and things will clear up on their own eventually. Sounds like you're doing all the right things in the meantime. 

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TerribleLobster

The cyano has died down, I mainly just have this stringy algae all over the place that lightly coats the rocks. I got a few more corals and added a lid! Tank is looking great 🙂

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TerribleLobster

IMG_20191115_170551.thumb.jpg.509e7d2ce3d23bf56b00d379e7d43804.jpg

new zoas and scoly!

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M&C

Looking good! But if you don't glue those down soon that urchin might take them for a walk 😄

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TerribleLobster

The dinos/cyano have all fled. I was mainly just patient. I cut water changes from weekly to every other week and I fed an increased amount. I did a lot of manual removal when I would do water changes and I would spray off the rocks when I noticed a buildup.

 

There has been a lot of growth in the tank! I also added a pair of clowns 🙂 The tank is mainly in grow and observe mode. I don't have much more space for anything else to be added.

IMG_20191214_173920.thumb.jpg.7bcf77de230012bc58802663361864e0.jpg

4 new heads growing on my blasto!IMG_20191214_175228.thumb.jpg.b05a74f4796869dba797421b415c3db6.jpg

All the upwards growth is new growth 😄IMG_20191214_093555.thumb.jpg.09879df214d4f1888f81dcf617ec4949.jpg

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M&C

Looks great! I think we have different definitions of not enough space though 😂

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TerribleLobster
13 hours ago, M&C said:

Looks great! I think we have different definitions of not enough space though 😂

Hahaha true I could probably fit a bit more in, but I only have one light so the spread isn't great. I'm worried about things shading each other out as they grow.

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TerribleLobster

All of my coral have been growing really well and I have my parameters pretty dialed in for Ca, Alk and Mg. I did lose 3 clownfish over the last few months 😕 My clown goby is a big bully and  has been harassing them wen I get a new one so I put the goby in the sump and he's been happy there. I'll post some pics of the coral growth soon. I got a new monti and a chalice so excited to show those off.

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