Gablami's Reefer 525 Build

Discussion in 'Tank Journals' started by Gablami, Sep 28, 2016.

  1. Vhuang168

    Vhuang168 Supporting Member

    I would see if you can simplify the return plumbing. There looks like a lot of elbows which will add a lot of head pressure.

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  2. MolaMola

    MolaMola Supporting Member

    Nice aquascape!
    As for the Apex programming, you could do a search and see what others use in order to get started. After that, I highly recommend what others have advised me - download the entire big manual and read it. Then read it again. My first controller, so it was all new to me and still can be pretty confusing because I need to go through it all again because it has so many features. BAR members are great at helping and the Apex forum is also indispensible.
    After you check the sliders as recommended in previous post, check your device. My old Android phone cannot run Apex software (or whatever is needed for it), which is lame of my phone. So I can receive texts telling me something is wrong but I cannot do anything about it until I get to my laptop! Gotta get a new phone.
  3. Gablami

    Gablami Supporting Member

    Thanks Vincent, good idea. I cut out two right angles. I don't think I can simplify beyond this. I looked into gate valves, but given that I don't really know what I'm going to do with them at this point, I thought I would hold off. Can easily disconnect and add those in later if I want. (Basically, I couldn't find it at Home Depot and I just wanted to get it done).


    The other weird thing is that 3/4 PVC pipe fits just right into my return pump. Am I missing something? Or is this just a newer "made for America" version? I don't think I need an adapter.


    Molamola and Vincent, thanks for the tips on Apex. I'll get back to it eventually. Will let you know how it goes.
  4. Vhuang168

    Vhuang168 Supporting Member

    I would remove that brass connection. Doesn't the barbed fitting screw into the PVC fitting?

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  5. Gablami

    Gablami Supporting Member

    Home Depot didn't have a 3/4in barbed piece in the right thread. So I had to use the brass with an adapter. It looks ugly but not harmful right?
  6. Vhuang168

    Vhuang168 Supporting Member

    Saltwater is corrosive. It will eat into the brass and contaminate the tank. Brass has copper in it and your corals will not tolerate it.

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  7. Gablami

    Gablami Supporting Member

    Oh, got it. Duh. Thanks for the tip.
  8. sfsuphysics

    sfsuphysics Supporting Member

    Yeah, ditch that brass, brass has copper, and you will effectively kill any invertibrates in your tank over time (that means coral too)
    That nylon fitting you have doesn't screw into the threaded PVC where brass is?

    Something I've done in the past is instead of using a barbed fitting I would use a threaded PVC fitting, and simply use plastic clamps (or zipties) to try and squeeze it as good as I can on the hose (should be a tight fit without) and since the pump is already in the sump and minor dripping isn't a huge issue. At least that's a short term solution.
  9. Enderturtle

    Enderturtle Volunteer

    I LOVE these pictures! Keep em coming.

    Your aquascape is superb!
  10. Gablami

    Gablami Supporting Member

    Thanks Ender. I also enjoy photography, so I can't help the photos.

    Ended up finding the exact right piece back at Home Depot. So in summary, no adapter needed for some reason. Just glued a 3/4in PVC into the blue ring and was good to go. Got rid of that poisonous brass fitting.


    Ultimately, my setup was pretty simplistic. The valve going down has nothing attached to it. It currently ends at a upside-down T just to support the plumbing. Minimal right angles. Spray painted the PVC blue just for fun. Setup my return pump to screw off if I need to do something with it. It's been handy so far, pumping in my newly minted saltwater.


    The other side is a mess. But Vhuang was right (as he often seems to be), and I just had to click that box with an arrow to get my Energy Bar working. Why didn't I think of that?


    I'll get to organizing it eventually. So here is the current state of my tank. Put in my two MP40s. Not sure if those are the best locations for them at this point.


    Stopped by the store and got some head-on shell on jumbo shrimp. Dropped a 1/2 lb in, and emptied the whole bottle of Dr. Tim's One and Only solution with live nitrifying bacteria. Shrimp graveyard.

    DSC_0227 (1).jpg

    Ok vacation over. Back to work tomorrow. Thanks for all the help guys!
    DT Prime likes this.
  11. DT Prime

    DT Prime Webmaster

    Great looking set up, looking forward to seeing it come together!
  12. sfsuphysics

    sfsuphysics Supporting Member

    Don't forget to remove the shrimp, they won't decay to nothing, and in fact as soon as they kind of look funky you should yank them... And 1/2 pound was probably a bit overkill.
  13. Flagg37

    Flagg37 Officer at large

    I think I remember reading to only leave them in until the amonia rises to 2-4ppm. Can anyone else verify this?
  14. Gablami

    Gablami Supporting Member

    I took out three of the shrimp this morning. Still 5 in the tank. Didn't want to completely flood the system with ammonia and nitrites.

    Also the water level in the display tank was a bit lower than I thought it would be. The top of my rockscape on the right is about 3.5 inches from the water level. Hopefully I can still grow some coral there...dunno if it's too close.
  15. Gablami

    Gablami Supporting Member

    Lol when I said right I was thinking anatomical right. It's the left.
  16. RandyC

    RandyC Supporting Member

    I went back an re-examined and it turns out that this was just a case of me being an extreme num-num. I have no idea why I couldn't get my 3/4" pvc pipe into the blue adapter that came with the pump when I was first installing everything, but now after going back all is peachy.

    I was correct that the pump does come with BSPT though, but it's on the threaded side. So, if you wanted to thread an NPT adapter on it, that wouldn't work. Sorry for leading you down a rat hole! My bad.
  17. RandyC

    RandyC Supporting Member

    It's not so much patience, but out of necessity, the rock I bought was dry pukani rock from Bulk Reef Supply that came out of the ocean, but was never cleaned and it has a lot of dead organics that need to decompose before I could put it in the tank. Rock has been curing and cycling for 4 weeks now, so hopefully I can start aquascaping soon...getting real antsy. :)
  18. Gablami

    Gablami Supporting Member

    No problemo Randy. It was a very pleasant surprise to see it worked without the adapter.
  19. coral4me

    coral4me Supporting Member

    Wow, I'm excited for you and a little jealous, ok maybe a lot jealous!
    Awesome tank and equipment. Can't wait to see this tank develop. Thanks for sharing your build with us.

    Note: I found those white valves with blue handles on the manifold get really hard to turn and very difficult to adjust. It's great that you bought the threaded version so you can easily swap them out in the future if needed.
  20. roostertech

    roostertech reef noob

    +1 for gate valve instead of ball valve. Since you'll have to hit the perfect amount of flow to get complete silence it would be very hard to do with ball valve.

    Also I would use ammonium chloride rather than shrimp. So much easier to control level

    Man you got that tank up and running in no time. I'm still on the drawing board ;p

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