45 Gallon Slice of Heaven

Discussion in 'Tank Journals' started by Prisonfood53, Jun 9, 2014.

  1. Prisonfood53

    Prisonfood53 Guest

    So I was hesitant to start a tank thread thinking that since this is my first saltwater experience whatever I posted would in no way compare to the insane tanks folks have. Well after some thought I figured "why not?" It will be a good way to document my progress with the tank and get some constructive criticism and hopefully some encouragement.

    Started on 4/1/14 with a Brute 32 gallon garbage can about 15lbs of BRS Pukani and 15lbs of BRS Fiji dry live rock. Let the rock "cook" in the Brute for about a month with a heater and MJ1200. I did 5 gallon water changes every couple days during this time. I then added some bacteria in a can and let the rock sit for a couple more weeks to finish of the cycle using ammonia. (I really didn't want the cycle to be done in the tank in case there were any unpleasant smells.)

    Once I was getting 0 ammonia reading I put together my scape. I really wanted an open scape and tried to create something that would followed a pattern but wasn't cookie cutter. I ended up with a large rock that is made up of approx 5 pieces put together with epoxy and super glue, a medium rock that is 2 pieces and a single small rock. I believe this gives me several useable levels to place different types of corals and islands to keep good swim space for the fish and not look crowded.

    Okay back to work, to be continued. . .
    Dry scape 1.JPG Dry scape 2.JPG
    Spoon and neuro like this.
  2. tr1gger

    tr1gger Keyboard Cowboy

    Nice work!
  3. rygh

    rygh Supporting Member

    Nice start. Agree that it has some good mounting points.
    Make sure to use lots of epoxy on the joints.
    Some of that rock may dissolve a bit over time, and it would be a pain if it came apart.
  4. Prisonfood53

    Prisonfood53 Guest

    Thanks tr1gger

    Thanks for the advice I was debating if I should add some more, I used a the whole box. There are a couple of spots I think I will add to now that I know it may become unstable over time.
  5. Prisonfood53

    Prisonfood53 Guest

    So once I was happy with the scape I got the tank up and wet and continued to add ammonia since I had no livestock to add yet. It sat like this for about 2 more weeks.
    Wet Scape 1.JPG
    My equipment:
    JBJ RL 45
    Spectrapure UPLC II ATO w/ 5 gallon water jug
    Hydor Koralia 425
    Kessil A360WE W/ gooseneck and 90° adapter
    Cobalt Aquatics Neo-Therm 200W heater

    BRS 4 stage RO/DI Value Plus
    wpeterson likes this.
  6. Prisonfood53

    Prisonfood53 Guest

    About 4 weeks ago I got my first livestock, a Yasha Haze goby and Randall's pistol shrimp. They hid for a while so I wasn't sure if they had paired up or not but then I started seeing several tunnels appear and the bromance is official (no idea why I think of them as being male). Slowly they have become used to the tank and sit right in the front for half of the day. This is the first pic I was able to get of the goby, "Tiny" sorry it's so terrible I have more on my camera that I need to download and process.
    Yasha 1.JPG

    A week later I got my first corals, a torch and a hammer.
    Torch 1.JPG Hammer 1.JPG
  7. Prisonfood53

    Prisonfood53 Guest

    After having the tank up and running for about a month I decide to try my hand at some DIY media baskets. Really wanted to buy them from InTank but Stevie T hasn't finished designing them. I asked help from a plastic fabricator I know through work and he set me up with some of his scrap acrylic an
    d gave me a tutorial on scoring, breaking and "welding" acrylic. So I went home and built my first media basket. photo 1.JPG

    Sorry for the sideways pic but it's just for reference. This thing had no straight sides and was out of square but it did fit into the overflow chamber and would work. Now that I had a better idea of what it took to put this basket together I decided to try again. This time I took my measurements to Tap Plastics and they cut the pieces for me and finishing the next 2 took a fraction of the time and only cost about $30 in material.
    photo 2.JPG photo 4.JPG

    These turned out much better and are about 3-4 times as big as the stock baskets all for about $50 with glue and drill bit. I went with the orange cuz the Giants have been playing so well. These baskets have increased my live rock by a couple lbs and I can also run a bigger bag of carbon.
    wpeterson, Geneva and Spoon like this.
  8. Prisonfood53

    Prisonfood53 Guest

    On Saturday I finally made my wife happy and got a couple of clowns. I really wanted the Black Ice from Aquatic Collection but I think Mouse got the last of the lively one cuz there were only 2 left by the time I got there and both were rather shy. I believe it was Carson that offered me the Ice Mocha for the same price as the Black Ice so I couldn't resist. These guys are awesome swimming all over the place and making the tank, as my wife says, not boring.

    Scoping out the future residence?
    JBJ RL 45 34.jpg
    Yahsa photo bomb
    JBJ RL 45 39.jpg
    The Bromance
    JBJ RL 45 7.jpg
    JBJ RL 45 46.jpg

    My current sock list:

    2 Ice Mocha Clowns
    1 Yasha Haze Goby
    1 Randall's Pistol Shrimp
    2 Skunk Cleaner Shrimp
    3 Blackfoot Trochus snails
    2 Nassarius snails

    Last edited: Jul 11, 2014
    Nav likes this.
  9. tr1gger

    tr1gger Keyboard Cowboy

    That is seriously some impressive acrylic work! Really good job!

    Beautiful clowns :)
  10. Spoon

    Spoon Guest

    Media baskets are so sick! I'm gonna do that too!

    Big :thumbup:
  11. Prisonfood53

    Prisonfood53 Guest

    tr1gger thanks. It was way easier the second time, the picture actually doesn't do justice to how ugly the first attempt was. The Weld-on really melts the acrylic and I was not careful at all. There are fingerprints all over it and it was sitting on a paper towel that left a huge mark down one side and it actually start to bond to a plastic level that I had accidentally pushed it up against. DIY can be rough.

    Spoon thanks for the thumbs up. If you do make your own just make sure you use the appropriate tools and it will be a breeze. The edges need to be straight and clean so the weld-on can be easily applied and the holes need to be drilled with a plastic specific bit. Once I got the correct drill bit it never cracked.
  12. Prisonfood53

    Prisonfood53 Guest

    So my unbelievable family got me a great Father's Day gift.

    They are the best. They also got me a beautiful Royal Gramma which my wife named Queen Elizabeth and my twins are calling Liz. Sometimes being unoriginal is still funny.
  13. Nav

    Nav Director of Marketing & Photography

    Did you try the WP25 out? I'm debating between WP10 & WP25 for my 40Br.
  14. Prisonfood53

    Prisonfood53 Guest

    Nav I actually returned it for store credit. I asked Matt at Aqua Exotic to let me know when he can get the RW-8 since it can be tuned down without a power adapter. The WP-25 seemed do powerful I was worried I'd have a sandstorm. Matt has one running on a 30 gal but he has a good bit of rock work to disrupt the flow. He showed me a WP-10 at full power in a 14 gal it was pretty unimpressive I'd say go for the 25 and get the adapter so you can tune it to whatever you need.
  15. Nav

    Nav Director of Marketing & Photography

    I thought these guys come with a mini controller with some pre-defined speeds & wave modes...

    I'll do some reading about RW-8. Thx
  16. Prisonfood53

    Prisonfood53 Guest

    Nav they do come with a controller and I was under the same impression as you but the controller only has 3 settings the lowest being 50% which is still a ton cuz these are really powerful. If you get the power adapter apparently you can drop the power thru the entire range from 0-100%. I think it's only like $20 extra. Not entirely sure all my info is correct but it's what I understood from a conversation and a little googling.
    Nav likes this.
  17. Coral reefer

    Coral reefer President

    Nice start, and great job making yourself do a journal!
  18. Prisonfood53

    Prisonfood53 Guest

    Thanks Mike it was a tough decision to put myself out there but so far it's been great.
  19. Prisonfood53

    Prisonfood53 Guest

    Thanks to tr1gger for the green birdsnest frag I picked up yesterday. The the green polyps really pop.
    tr1gger likes this.
  20. Prisonfood53

    Prisonfood53 Guest

    Just updating to keep my thread current.

    Last week my Cobalt Neo-Therm 200W heater cracked and put some nasties in my water. Cobalt is sending 2x 100W heaters to replace the broken one. After a couple water changes and lots of Carbon the water seems to be back to normal but the birdsnest is not looking too good, I'm hoping it will recover. Link to thread regarding this topic, Added Kalkwasser to my ATO and this morning it smells burnt.

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