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Fryguy0201

13g Shallow Lagoon; first coral! :~)

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Fryguy0201

Hello there! I'm Dylan and this is going to be my first build journal here and only my second saltwater tank ever (last one came down four years ago). I've been planning this tank subconsciously for years and recently for past 6 months but I just got my tank and a stand (pics below) and I'll be getting all sorts of stuff over the next couple weeks so I figured I'd start a kind of "pre-journal" where I can share thoughts or questions I have before we get wet! I move in a month so once that happens and the tank is in its permanent spot (right next to my desk a couple inches above the desk with direct view from side sitting at my desk full down view standing up) I will be filling it up immediately and starting the journal of the actual journey of this tank.

 

I have a very strong vision for this tank of a beautiful zen garden of zoas, ricordeas, some lps here and there, maybe a nem or 2, a gaggle of sexy shrimp, and MAYBE if my roommates yell enough a goby or 2. I really love the look of this shallow tank and think keeping to (for lack of better words) low growing corals on some beautiful rock work will give me the moss and lichen terrarium look I'm going for. For this tank I have been taking a lot of inspiration from my own plants/terrariums and pictures of planted tanks all over the internet. I am going to get my dry rock order in next week so I can begin working on the rock scape as I want to put lots of time into making it very intricate and exactly what I want. Gonna seed the tank with as live of rock rubble as I can get in the back as bio filtration and MIGHT mod the second chamber into an area for some chaeto (although its so small probably not...). Might run some carbon once every two weeks or how ever often needed but want to stay natural all live rock and live sand filtration. Will update after I get more stuff or to show rock work when I start that ASAP! Anyways here is a list of the equipment I have ordered or stuff I am ordering soon (I know some of this is overkill for this small of a setup but this is what is hopefully going to turn into the tank I have been dreaming of for years so I am pouring some money into it) :

 

Tank: 13 gallon (24"x16"x8") AIO acrylic frag tank by luckreefs (great price + free shipping 🙂)

Light: Radion XR15 G5 PRO or AquaIllumination Hydra TwentySix +HD (I wanted the NanoBox but they have paused production and there is always future tanks, right?)

Heater: Archaea Mini 50w 

Return Pump: UMPCT 120 GPH Pump (cheap might replace)

Flow: Tunze Nanostream 6020 or 6040 

ATO: Tunze (not the nano one) + reservoir I got from luckreefs as well

RO/DI: SpectraPure MaxPure MPDI 90GPD

Stand: Got at local flea market- need to add supports and my friend is coming to pick it up this weekend to paint it for me (might end up being cooler than the tank lol)

I have other stuff like salt, testing kits, bulkhead, etc. I have ordered but I figure I will leave those out for now and put em in the actual journal 🙂

QUESTIONS:

1. For dry rock I have been looking at Salty Bottom Reef Co. anyone have experience with them? Said they should be shipping in a week or two and if you have other vendors you like let me know!

2. Opinions on the Radion XR15 or AI Hyrda 26 HD? Like I said I really did want the NanoBox but I also like the look and functionality of both these options so if you have experience with either give me your opinion, please!

3. Looking into a small generator/battery backup I could keep in case of power outages, any recommendations? Also recommendations for good surge protectors? Kinda silly to ask for but I always like products I know someone has tried and trust.

4. How many sexy shrimp could I realistically keep here? I want enough so it's like a herd but not to many that I am crowding them. I am thinking maybe 8-10 of them? Just wondering if the more I have also increases their chance of munching corals/becoming more aggressive? I have kept a pair in my first tank and just made sure they were fed we never had any problems so just wondering if having that many will increase the chance of that?

 

Ok this was a lot so I will go for now and post more if I have more to say, thanks if you read all this and if you have any tips, tricks, opinions, or anything to say please do! Love all advice and wisdom I can get. I have such a vision for this tank and hope with the help of this amazing forum and some exercised patience I can pull it off and I have never been more excited to see where a hobby takes me, cheers!

 

(plz ignore these messy pictures I am moving in a few weeks as I said so my space is a MESS and packed full of stuff and I am no photographer but atleast I tried lol)

 

 

 

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Ratvan

I don't really have a lot of insight into your questions. So I'm following along because, that tank is amazing 

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Fryguy0201
1 hour ago, Ratvan said:

I don't really have a lot of insight into your questions. So I'm following along because, that tank is amazing 

I have a picture of your rock work saved as on my rock inspiration board so thanks 🙂

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Ratvan
3 minutes ago, Fryguy0201 said:

I have a picture of your rock work saved as on my rock inspiration board so thanks 🙂

Wow. 

Which one? 😧

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Fryguy0201
10 minutes ago, Ratvan said:

Wow. 

Which one? 😧

This picture love your idea to hide the seem + this view of them specifically the little amount of space between the two rocks but the impact of that space from that view (sounds too deep for rocks but there is an art to it I believe so I am studying).

 

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Ratvan
20 minutes ago, Fryguy0201 said:

This picture love your idea to hide the seem + this view of them specifically the little amount of space between the two rocks but the impact of that space from that view (sounds too deep for rocks but there is an art to it I believe so I am studying).

 

Ah. Lessons learned by numerous failures. Possibly still learning, I think its a little too big for what I want, might change up what I place in this... Which is awkward with another hammer enroute but will see

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Fryguy0201
10 minutes ago, Ratvan said:

Ah. Lessons learned by numerous failures. Possibly still learning, I think its a little too big for what I want, might change up what I place in this... Which is awkward with another hammer enroute but will see

One of the only things I know for fact with this hobby and my little experience is that everything is a moment you can learn from no matter the result. Although you say it might be too big all I see is beautiful rock work honestly so I will be excited to see what you end up doing whatever that happens to be

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Ratvan
On 4/30/2020 at 2:34 AM, Fryguy0201 said:

One of the only things I know for fact with this hobby and my little experience is that everything is a moment you can learn from no matter the result. Although you say it might be too big all I see is beautiful rock work honestly so I will be excited to see what you end up doing whatever that happens to be

We'll see, new additions coming Wednesday so that most likely will make me re evaluate my plans again, depends on the sizes of the Frags i can get going forwards. Can also access my Reefing gear from the Office on Monday so can get a more suitable light then the Asta, I love it but I want more 

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Fryguy0201

Been meaning to do this but I finally placed my rock order a couple days ago! Going dry rock as I want to work on the scape for while...got some JB Waterweld to hold it all together.I plan to seed my tank with a piece of live rock from my LFS really established mixed reef so hopefully that is a good jump start for the cycle but I plan to have ammonia on hand. My question is should I dose ammonia as I would with a normal fish less cycle using pure ammonia as the ammonia source or do I put the lr in and wait to see how my cycle progresses? I would assume wait and dose to a higher amount if needed but I am not too sure and can't find super solid answers to base mine off, any help would be super appreciated!

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Fryguy0201

Finally got some rocks and been playin around with some scape ideas. Liking this right now, whatcha think?? (sorry for mess)

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Fryguy0201

Im using the JB Water Weld epoxy and can I use it to fill in the whole crack between rocks if I am wanting too? Feel like this will just help stability and keep detritus from falling into the cracks where it may not get caught up in the flow. 

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mitten_reef
42 minutes ago, Fryguy0201 said:

Im using the JB Water Weld epoxy and can I use it to fill in the whole crack between rocks if I am wanting too? Feel like this will just help stability and keep detritus from falling into the cracks where it may not get caught up in the flow. 

No idea on the water weld stuff, I’ve only used reef branded putty and super glue. 
 

You don’t want to fill any holes that is not for structural attachment purpose. Holes are where your beneficial bacteria will colonize. And later where your pods take refuge and reproduce.  Cleaning is done by blasting the nooks and crannies with a turkey baster regularly to bring detritus out into the main flow to be carried away into the filter.  
 

love the tank and the scape. 

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Diamonds x Pearls

JB Water Weld has been used and sold everywhere it seems. However I just buy Loc-Tite brand Super Glue Gel and I'm quite satisfied with it.

 

The nooks and crannies can also be utilized for your CUC to munch on. I have seen my nassarius snails get desperate for food and extend their proboscis into a rock to slurp some stuff. I wish I had a video of it. It was really effin cool to see.

 

Quote

Looking into a small generator/battery backup I could keep in case of power outages, any recommendations? Also recommendations for good surge protectors? Kinda silly to ask for but I always like products I know someone has tried and trust.

For surge protection I found that a lot of them fell around the same price range. However Rigid, Home Depots in store brand, isn't bad. If you have this, try to plug into a GFCI. I unfortunately don't. When you shop for a surge protector, it's a nice feature to have it mountable. You can hide it better or at least mount in a way that drip loops are easily made.

 

Before you invest in a generator, check how much wattage your system will require to run. All hardware appliances should tell you the wattage to run. If it doesn't, shame on them, but you can find out wattage by multiplying volts and amps. Further reading: https://www.bulkreefsupply.com/power-outage

 

Generators are expensive, but probably necessarily if you live in somewhere like Gulf Coast. You know, hurricanes. However inverters can be a possibility as they could provide at least some power for a day or two. Inverters are generally cheaper too. Honda makes great ones. Honda also makes great cars and motorcycles. Trust Japanese engineering.

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Fryguy0201
21 minutes ago, mitten_reef said:

No idea on the water weld stuff, I’ve only used reef branded putty and super glue. 
 

You don’t want to fill any holes that is not for structural attachment purpose. Holes are where your beneficial bacteria will colonize. And later where your pods take refuge and reproduce.  Cleaning is done by blasting the nooks and crannies with a turkey baster regularly to bring detritus out into the main flow to be carried away into the filter.  
 

love the tank and the scape. 

Thanks! Didn’t really mean the holes but more of the cracks between rocks but honestly your point stands cause that’s still surface area!

 

Ended up changing the scape a bunch and will probably change more but i’ll post pics with it in the tank when I settle on something! 

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Fryguy0201

That drawing on the left is from a month or more ago and I am pretty proud of myself so far! Not going for a scape identical to the picture but I am happy with this side, it looks like a bear claw or something 😆 (pretty hard to see different rock heights from this but more pics later) 

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Fryguy0201
30 minutes ago, Diamonds x Pearls said:

probably necessarily if you live in somewhere like Gulf Coast. You know, hurricanes. However inverters can be a possibility as they could provide at least some power for a day or two. Inverters are generally cheaper too. Honda makes great ones.

I did some more research on generators and definitely not looking to invest that much just going to look for something that could keep it running for a day or two. Where I'm at isn't hit by anything too serious but we have a few day or two long power outages a year so definitely not risking having nothing. Thanks for all the advice/information and I will be looking for those surge protectors next time I'm at Home Depot!

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COreefer

Battery backups could be another option depending on how much power your setup will draw.

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Fryguy0201
1 minute ago, COreefer said:

Battery backups could be another option depending on how much power your setup will draw.

Most the ones I looked at would only run for a few hours BUT if I have just the heater and circulation pump plugged into it I might be able to get away with one running my tank for at least a day. Will have to do more research, yay! 

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Diamonds x Pearls
18 minutes ago, Fryguy0201 said:

Most the ones I looked at would only run for a few hours BUT if I have just the heater and circulation pump plugged into it I might be able to get away with one running my tank for at least a day. Will have to do more research, yay! 

If anything it doesn't hurt to have some battery operated air bubblers. I just happen to have those because I used to go pier fishing a lot and I'd try to get the mackerel home fresh and live.

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Fryguy0201
7 minutes ago, Diamonds x Pearls said:

If anything it doesn't hurt to have some battery operated air bubblers. I just happen to have those because I used to go pier fishing a lot and I'd try to get the mackerel home fresh and live.

Yea have some extra battery air pumps from old tank I will have just in case.

 

LOL reminds me of my dad we use to do the same thing at the lake I would try to keep the minnows alive in a jar with an air pump...sadly they never lasted too long 🤣

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Fryguy0201

Realizing I am gunna have a lot of extra rock might throw it in my old 5 gallon with a hob, heater, and the kessil I have for a nightstand Xenia/GSP tank. I really love the movement of these corals but I am not looking for anything that grows too tall or with too much movement in this shallow tank. 

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Diamonds x Pearls

For a shallow tank like that you can pull off a neat zoanthid/palythoa garden.

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Fryguy0201
39 minutes ago, Diamonds x Pearls said:

For a shallow tank like that you can pull off a neat zoanthid/palythoa garden.

Yes one side of the rock work is going to be completely dedicated to zoas with the other a mushroom (mainly ricordea my favorite) and lps "garden". I am trying to make like a "lagoon/tide pool" area between the two sides of rock where I want to have a couple RFA or many a cool coral that likes being on the sand might just have my ric garden there but haven't decided yet. I am trying not to set anything in stone in my mind and be really flexible but I know for sure that right side of the rock work will be for zoas, nothing better than a good zoa garden imo.
 

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Diamonds x Pearls

Tidal Gardens has a video suggesting what kind of corals are good for substrate. I have Fungia on my crushed coral bed.

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Fryguy0201
30 minutes ago, Diamonds x Pearls said:

Tidal Gardens has a video suggesting what kind of corals are good for substrate. I have Fungia on my crushed coral bed.

I was just watching that last night! But I am leaning more towards getting a couple baby RFAs hopefully some rarer colors if I can get my hands on em which my LFS usually has a huge selection of RFA so...yay. Probably way down the line tho I wanna make sure everything super established first. 

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