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madtrax

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About madtrax

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    Male
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    Hong Kong
  1. I used the 'official' accessory (I couldn't find it in white/metal colour tho) https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0093Y55J0 Honestly, it's quite expensive for a piece of aluminium and you can probably build one yourself.
  2. Thanks! It's actually pretty straightforward, there is a concrete border on the ceiling where I simply drilled two holes to hang the two Hydras using 'standard' suspension cables. Here is a quick picture.
  3. Haha, not really, if I had an Android, I would have gone the Google Home or Alexa way instead of hacking my way into Homekit. Alexa for instance is also more flexible and allows you to do more exotic stuff whereas Homekit is pretty rigid in what/how it supports stuff. I get the temperature of the aquarium by reading the USB output of the Seneye Reef but you could use a very straightforward probe like the DS18B20 (like this https://thepihut.com/blogs/raspberry-pi-tutorials/18095732-sensors-temperature-with-the-1-wire-interface-and-the-ds18b20)
  4. Yeah definitely, it shocked me as well the first time I saw that. It's really like 'grab & go' as you would pick a can of coke at a 7/11. They must sell quite a lot of them... even the saltwater, I don't think they survive long in the LFS (like a week of two). Corals are relatively harder to find, I think FOT are more common in Hong Kong (easier too). You can find more corals if you actually go up the floors in all these buildings. The varieties of corals is pretty low too, it's not like in US where you can actually order some fancy SPS and Zoas.
  5. Thanks ! Totally agree, it makes life easier to have all the LFS in the same street, the downside is that you have more temptations and always 'wonder' what's next door 😄 I have seen a lot of crazy stuff tho. The main problem with LFS in Hong Kong, in my opinion, is that most of the fish (and also corals) are in really poor health and they usually only last few days if you don't have a proper QT setup. Sure they are really cheap (relative to US for instance) but the survival rate is very low. There is a big second-hand market where people trade corals and fish which are in much better condition (http://seafishzone.com) And yes, I have seen many overcrowded tanks (on this second-hand website) where it's really sad to see. We probably don't have the same notion of space as we are used to small apartments indeed : ) I originally planed to used it with individual dosing pumps but ended up buying a proper doser, the BM T11 which ends up being almost cheaper. I only use the Raspberry now which I use as a Homekit bridge (see https://github.com/nfarina/homebridge) to control several stuff like my A/C, fan, mangrove light, temp. probe and does the reading of the Seneye. I have transitioned some of my stuff to super cheap and reliable Sonoff wifi switches (https://www.itead.cc/smart-home/sonoff-wifi-wireless-switch.html) with custom firmware (https://medium.com/@jeffreyroshan/flashing-a-custom-firmware-to-sonoff-wifi-switch-with-arduino-ide-402e5a2f77b). You can buy a 4CH Sonoff wifi switch for like $15 and flash it (https://github.com/arendst/Sonoff-Tasmota/wiki/Sonoff-4CH-and-4CH-Pro). You end up with a fully functional and versatile programmable 'power bar'. You then don't necessarily need to code any logic and you can rely on 3rd party apps to ensure your IOT devices behave as expected. I like being able to monitor/manage my tank alongside any other devices in my apartment. Wherever I am, everything is controllable from my phone, here is an example of my Homekit shortcuts on my phone which includes some aquarium specific items (temp, mangrove light on the screenshot below). I have a chiller on my tank but if the temperature of the aquarium reach a certain threshold (aka the chiller had fail), it will automatically turn the AC on.
  6. Thanks! The holes are indeed at the same level but in practice you can see that the middle one (which is already much larger) uses a 90deg elbow which ultimately makes it higher than the main drain. This hole is first an emergency drain (it's a large 1" pipe that can handle all the water if the main drain gets plugged or the syphon is broken) and then do some light surface skimming. If it gets plugged, the main drain will be able to handle the water, just the water level will rise slightly. If both drains get plugged then the return chamber will dry up as I ensured that all the water in my returned chamber can be pushed in the main tank without overflowing (it's really at the edge but doesn't overflow). Tho, the ATO will start adding water back, so technically I guess there will probably be some limited overflow but the ATO will automatically stop if it detects that it's pushing water for too long (like 30sec). Hope it makes sense!
  7. I was looking at Drew's lagoon tank as it just got featured on Marine Depot - Do you see the lights ? One Hydra 26HD with 2xT5HO bulbs on the side, looks pretty neat ! Maybe I will try something similar, even though I am not really sure it brings much...
  8. Yes, that's another good point too, the heat. It's very hot and humid the majority of the year in Hong Kong so adding extra heat is something I try to avoid as much as possible. If my chiller dies, I can say goodbye to the tank within few hours. Honestly, I was thinking of building an appliance with some fans hoping I could keep the bulbs relatively cool (and to factor that, also go with only 3 bulbs) but maybe it's a bit naive. What appliance were you using ? AquaIllumination support replied today, telling me to contact them again when in US (as expected...). Fortunately I will be in US for a week mid-september but only for a week, I asked them if I can simply buy the broken part, let's see.
  9. Thanks ! And yes, I am still fighting the lobophora, I think it's an endless battle. The Naso Tang helped me a lot but it wasn't happy in my tank and was too big. I haven't found any other solutions so far... I am still looking for small Naso Tang when I tour the fish stores in Hong Kong (there is one long street full of LFS one after the other) but they are always way too large. The advantage of dealing with nano is that I literally remove rocks out of the tank to clean them up sometime. I was about to take a full tank picture and....once again I had one of the AI Hydra 26HD dying on me! It happened when I switched the lights to 100% (doing "All on" in the app). I am super disappointed to be honest, these lights are very expensive and yet so unreliable. In addition, I bought them on Amazon in US a year ago so I am pretty sure the customer service will give me a hard time. I tested the light with a multimeter and there is indeed a short so I am pretty sure the motherboard burnt out. I sent them a message to see if I could buy just this part, let's see. That made me do some research on T5 lighting which make me wants to build my own fixture. I am pretty sure I can build something pretty cool for a very decent amount of money by ordering stuff straight from China and building my own controller. My only concern is that, if I want something a bit stylish (aka something which doesn't look bulky), I will have hard time to fit 4 T5HO bulbs. When I started to look for parts, I had in mind to do a simple 2 or 3 bulbs fixture (as a reminder my tank is 25cm wide and 25cm depth - 2 inches - so I was thinking of building a 20cm wide fixture) so I started to get serious about it. Then, I've read online that 2 bulbs may not be enough for SPS (which is what my tank is mainly filled of now) soI am doubting. Too bad, sounded like a fun project (and very easy to repair/replace/upgrade in comparison with LED)
  10. Hey, I had my first (planned) power outage. I had time to prepare and bought a small battery to keep the Vectra M1 and a fan to cool down the tank for few hours. I also built a small rig to easily plug everything and monitor the current and voltage. It was interesting to see how much current the different equipments required. As I said last time, I found some mangroves and got a decent survival rate. I finally started to see leaves coming out on one of them (the other are waiting by the window). I built a small mount out of a coat hanger to attach a small Zetlight LED for plant grow which attaches very will on my AI Hydra (You honestly can't tell it was a coat hanger :-D) Originally, the mount was flush with the AI Hydra, which was pretty neat as as you could barely see the Zetlight LED but it was a bit close from the mangroves.
  11. Beautiful tank, I like the very clean look with this type of overflow. I was wondering, there is no flow at all in this tank then (beside the small one created by the canister) ? Might think about covering one side of each restrainer (the ones facing each others), it may avoid the return flow to go straight back to the canister and maybe create some sort of flow pattern to go over all the tank.
  12. Thank you all for your nice comments. Some updates. Fighting Lobophora algae For quite some time now, I had Lobophora algae covering my rocks which really bothered me. It became worst and worst lately covering most of the central island, I then decided to really fix this problem. After reading many things online, I concluded that the only real solution was a Naso Tang and, with less efficiency, a tuxedo urchin. As my bristle tooth tang started to be too big for my tank, I went to my LFS to give it back and... exchanged it for a small Naso Tang (~3") which I am hosting temporary (which trust me, is way better that letting it die at the LFS). It went straight away for the algae and has been at it since then which is really great. It's getting healthier by the day too and I can see the rocks again, hallelujah. Fortunately it's very peaceful and get along with all the other inhabitants. Anyways, I doubt I will ever be able to get rid of this algae completely, it's a really pain in the *** (the Naso Tang does a good job but it's not perfectly clean). Hopefully, after the Naso Tang get rid of the majority of it, I would be able to keep it controlled when I give it back to my LFS. Found some Mangroves Finally, I was scuba diving last weekend and found some Mangroves that were floating around (about 7 seedlings). I have been looking for Mangroves for quite some time so hopefully they will survive in my tank (doubtful, let's be honest). My ultimate goal is to add them in the display tank on the left island. I am building a small rig that will be attached on the side of my AI Hydra to hang a freshwater LED light discretely. Corals colours still ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ Corals look healthy and are growing but colours are still very brownish, it's very slowly getting better. I am considering dosing some trace elements and co. to help things out but I don't really know what product to use or if it will even be effective. I believe trying to keep everything as stable as possible would be more beneficial than messing around.
  13. Really beautiful tank, love the scape and everything. One question, why having the return plumbing so high up ? I would think hiding the plumbing as much as possible might look better (like in the original scape where it's hidden by the rock)
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