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Wally's* 4x2x2 money pit

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Wally's* 4x2x2 money pit

Postby neilsonw » Sun 18 Dec, 2011 9:57 pm

Introduction:
Hello there, this is my return to salt water after about a decade break (moving around a lot for work). A lot has changed and I didn't have forum support like this back then, so we will see how it goes... Please be patient with me, I'm not too computer savy.

System Objectives: The tank is in our living room and so hopefully will be a real feature of the open-plan lounge when its up and going.

System Type: Planning a mixed reef tank (my son wants a sea cucumber?!?, had to compromise... he initially wanted a "cone Jelly-fish"!!

Display System:

Strike up Date: Hopefully get wet in January 2012

Display Tank: 4 X 2 X 2, float glass

Display Lighting: Planning LED lights, possibly Inwatter Stingray.

Stand: Pine stand stained "walnut" to match the decor of the house

Substrate: Marble chips (pool dust and 000 size)

Hood: hoodless

Sump: 3 foot sump divided into 3 sections: skimmer/DSB-fuge/return.

Refugium Lighting: Compact Fluoro, timed for opposite to display tank lighting

Support systems:

System Water: artificial salt water, unfortunately Canberra is a bit far from the coast, and I don't have the room for a 1000L storage for trucked in water.

Display Water circulation: 2 X Tunze 6065. Changed to 2 X WP40's on 27th April 2013 :)

Return Pump:Compact Eheim 3000.

Skimmer: Skimz Monster SM201, changed to Tunze 9011, Feb 2012. Upgraded to H&H V16011 January 2013. :tongue:

Evaporation Top Up:Auto top up (gravity fed with float valve)


Chemical Support:

Calcium Addition: Probably Randy's mix.

Alkilinity Addition: Probably Randy's mix

Other Chemical Maintenance: Probably Randy's mix


Images:

Image

The tank in its position, Cali overflow, planned for a Bean-Animal overflow.



Image

Plumbing in place.



Image

Back of tank painted black.



Image

Picture of the sump.



The RO/DI unit is set up and just got to find some time to get the tank filled and salted and scaped.

Thanks for watching.

WN
Last edited by neilsonw on Fri 22 Jun, 2012 10:33 pm, edited 4 times in total.
WN

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4x2x2 money pit --- shut down
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Re: Wally's 4x2x2 money pit

Postby DanJ » Mon 19 Dec, 2011 5:34 pm

Looks good, im looking into a new skimmer im watching to see how the skimz goes.
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Re: Wally's 4x2x2 money pit

Postby wmackay » Mon 19 Dec, 2011 6:15 pm

Looks
Unreal
Man everything is so clean!
"Death is nature's way of telling you to slow down."
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Re: Wally's 4x2x2 money pit

Postby terbit » Mon 19 Dec, 2011 7:20 pm

Looks good Mate.
Love what you have done with the stand :thumbsup:
wmackay wrote:Looks
Unreal
Man everything is so clean!


He'd be pretty peeved if it wasn't for a new set up :roflmao:
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Re: Wally's 4x2x2 money pit

Postby wmackay » Mon 19 Dec, 2011 7:59 pm

Ok Terbit,
Got me there hha. I'm just jealous mine doesn't look like this anymore!
"Death is nature's way of telling you to slow down."
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Re: Wally's 4x2x2 money pit

Postby neilsonw » Mon 19 Dec, 2011 8:08 pm

Thanks for the encouragement :wavey:

My TDS meter arrived today.

Tap water 42 ppm
RO/DI 1-2 ppm.

I'll order some live rock for the new year, and fill with salty water and so begin the cycle.

Now I'm really getting excited!!

WN
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4x2x2 money pit --- shut down
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Re: Wally's 4x2x2 money pit

Postby neilsonw » Thu 22 Dec, 2011 9:11 pm

Hey DanJ,

DanJ wrote:Looks good, im looking into a new skimmer im watching to see how the skimz goes.


Thanks for the encouragement.

I've been reading the Skimz owners thread (viewtopic.php?f=49&t=226927) and I'm having doubts about this skimmer. :furious:

Thinking I might return it before it gets used and maybe go for a Tunze 9011.

I'll keep thinking/ruminating and watch what others are saying on the above thread.

Cheers

WN
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Re: Wally's 4x2x2 money pit

Postby parrdog » Thu 22 Dec, 2011 9:32 pm

Nice setup, mate :).
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Re: Wally's 4x2x2 money pit

Postby neilsonw » Sat 31 Dec, 2011 5:00 pm

Well I spoke to the supplier of the skimmer and they have agreed to take it back for a refund.
I just wasn't comfortable with it given the bad experiences from others. Have ordered a Tunze skimmer to replace it.

I have ordered the live rock and will wet the tank in the next few days.

Exciting times.

W
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Re: Wally's* 4x2x2 money pit

Postby MeLLeR » Sun 01 Jan, 2012 11:07 pm

Looks good mate, I love how clean they are new!!

Have you ordered your lights yet?
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Re: Wally's* 4x2x2 money pit

Postby neilsonw » Wed 04 Jan, 2012 7:32 am

Well i'm now wet!

have transferred approx 400L into the tank, added the salt and I'm running.

Issues:
1. the Beananimal syphon didn't start automatically, had to started by syphoning water out of the bottom of it. now its running and tuned, but still getting a tricking sound of water flow through it. :furious:

2. the pool dust substrate has delivered a snow storm of fine silt even after it was washed, I guess i'll just have to wait for it to settle.

I've added some fish food to the sump DSB to try and start a bit of the cycle before the live rock arrives - hopefully the snow will have stopped so I can see what i'm doing in the tank for the scape.

Cheers
WN
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Re: Wally's* 4x2x2 money pit

Postby MeLLeR » Wed 04 Jan, 2012 9:43 am

Hey mate, looking at the pics of the sump I can tell you why the syphon doesnt self start....

The syphon pipe where it goes into the skimmer inlet part of your tank is too far below the surface of the water, so it is trapping air in there and isnt able to purge it out. (Air lock). You'll need to a) cut the pipe shorter or b) drill a small hole in the syphon pipe just above the water line to allow the air to be purged and self start.

Just fixed this same problem with Heaths tank by drilling the hole. It doesnt make it louder and it doesnt splash :)
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Re: Wally's* 4x2x2 money pit

Postby neilsonw » Wed 04 Jan, 2012 3:08 pm

Thanks for the tip. :cheers:

i did think that and cut the pipe, but obviously not short enough. I'll drill the hole and check the start/stop process so that i can sleep at night.

Any idea about the snow storm? Just let it settle then syphon it out, or do you think a filter bag might catch it all (which would be easier) if it was placed on the syphon of the bean-animal? Or am i just going to have to do large water changes?

I wonder if it will ever settle given the return and 2 tunze are keeping the DT circulating....

cheers

WN
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Re: Wally's* 4x2x2 money pit

Postby neilsonw » Wed 04 Jan, 2012 3:32 pm

MeLLeR,

Your a genius :bow: :bow:

just drilled the hole.

No problems with restarts. awesome. and the sun has just come out... the day is getting better and better :)

Thanks again for the tip.

WN
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Re: Wally's* 4x2x2 money pit

Postby MeLLeR » Wed 04 Jan, 2012 7:35 pm

No probs mate, glad i could help. As for your snow storm. Yup, yes and yeah. ;)

The snow storm will mostly settle, but some of it wont settle completely. Therefore a filter sock will be a good idea to catch the floaties that make it down the syphon, and finally, you will have to do water changes....but not necessarily for the snow-storm. :roflmao: :roflmao: :roflmao:

(at least I think im funny)
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Re: Wally's* 4x2x2 money pit

Postby neilsonw » Thu 05 Jan, 2012 3:54 pm

well the snow storm continues but is slowly? clearing.

I've ordered a filter sock to try and clear the debris... :crossfingers:

I've turned off the Tunze to try and let things settle, then I'll try siphoning some of what settles.

Awaiting the live rock...

Image

the snowstorm...

WN
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Re: Wally's* 4x2x2 money pit

Postby neilsonw » Thu 12 Jan, 2012 8:48 pm

Hey all,

The snow storm is slowly clearing, but it is taking a while... still awaiting a filter sock to arrive.

The Tunze 9011 skimmer has arrived and is up and running.

The Liverock is in and hence I have started the cycle, not sure if I will keep the current scape, but we shall see.

My son was very excited as we washed the rocks in RO, watching a pistol shrimp and 3-4 crabs come out.

I had placed some fish food into the DSB last week to try and start a mini-cycle prior to the LR arriving.

So now let the cycle begin...

Here are some photos.

1. Tank with Inwatter actinic lights on.

Image

2. Tank with LR in place.

Image

Cheers all

WN
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Re: Wally's* 4x2x2 money pit

Postby adamfenessy » Thu 12 Jan, 2012 9:23 pm

:clap:

Now for your next update - stocking! :thumbsup:
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Re: Wally's* 4x2x2 money pit

Postby MeLLeR » Thu 12 Jan, 2012 10:32 pm

Wow, thats a persistant snow storm!! Love what i can see of the scape ;)
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Re: Wally's* 4x2x2 money pit

Postby neilsonw » Mon 16 Jan, 2012 8:44 pm

Well the snow storm has settled, after 2 weeks... Felt like I was in the Swiss Alps!

LR been in for a week

First round of testing..

Temp: 25.8C
Salinity: 1.022
pH: 8.2
NH4: 1ppm
NO3: 2.5 ppm
NO2: 0.2 ppm

Have started water changes of 10%.


The "snow free" tank shot.

Image

Cheers

WN
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Re: Wally's* 4x2x2 money pit

Postby neilsonw » Tue 31 Jan, 2012 8:10 pm

4 weeks into the cycle, the cyanobacteria has retreated and the green aglae is on the run.

Latest tests:
Temp: 25.8
Salinity: 1.023
pH: 8.4
NH4: 0.0
NO2: 0.1
NO3: 2.5 (down from 50 on the 22/1/12)
alk: 3.6
Ca: 420
PO4: 0.40 (Hanna).

It looks like a few corals may have survived on the rocks. :clap:

Starting now to think about stocking.

Full tank shot.
Image

One of the surviving corals, ?Favia spp. ?Favites vasta
Image

Cheers

WN
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Re: Wally's* 4x2x2 money pit

Postby wmackay » Tue 31 Jan, 2012 8:16 pm

Looking good man! You got this far, waiting out as long as you can is going to do you great favors.
Wouldn't affect it to introduce a CUC though. :thumbsup:
If you Wana seed your dsb place some of your LR in the sump on top of the sand for a week or so.
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Re: Wally's* 4x2x2 money pit

Postby neilsonw » Tue 31 Jan, 2012 8:25 pm

Thanks wmackay for the advice.

I've already placed some live rock on top of the DSB from the time the rock was purchased 4 weeks ago, so hopefully its seeding.

I'll see if I can organise some Turbo's, maybe some macro also.

Thanks for viewing.

WN
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4x2x2 money pit --- shut down
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Re: Wally's* 4x2x2 money pit

Postby neilsonw » Tue 07 Feb, 2012 9:37 pm

So whats new...

First of all a big shout out to Phenom who gave me a dozen or so turbo snails this evening, cheers mate. :clap:
Hopefully they will hit my aglae hard. :crossfingers:

I've added some macro algae to my sump to get it established and start working on nutrient export.

Latest round of water parameters:

NH4: 0
NO2: 0.1
NO3: 2.5
Ca: 380
Alk: 3.2 meq
PO4: 0.31

Just waiting for the nitrite and nitrate to drop, then I'll look at starting some coral planting...

Cheers

WN
Last edited by neilsonw on Wed 08 Feb, 2012 9:50 am, edited 1 time in total.
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4x2x2 money pit --- shut down
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Re: Wally's* 4x2x2 money pit

Postby Phenom » Tue 07 Feb, 2012 11:38 pm

Hope those turbos get stuck in for you mate.

Just might add, you will need to look at raising the alk up or are you talking meq or dkh?

The po4 levels aren't too bad, unless you want to start running some of the colored sticks lol

Nitrates are looking good at 2.5. Just need to get the nitrites down.

It's coming along nicely though mate. Was good to meet another fellow reefer here in Canberra.
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Re: Wally's* 4x2x2 money pit

Postby Haydn24 » Wed 08 Feb, 2012 12:35 am

Heh good to see a fellow Canberra reefer :) loving the setup mate! It's nice to see systems done properly from the start.

Oh and nitrites are not an issue in marines due to the chloride level, especially at 0.1 :) but obviously they will pass with the cycle..

Cheers
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Re: Wally's* 4x2x2 money pit

Postby neilsonw » Wed 08 Feb, 2012 9:49 am

Thanks for the feedback.

The Alk is in meq, ive edited the post.

Cheers

WN
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Re: Wally's* 4x2x2 money pit

Postby pantherseyes2009 » Wed 08 Feb, 2012 11:59 am

My word of advice that you do not rush the tank, its only been cycling for 4 weeks, It takes longer for it to settle and mature, i would suggest that you only add a couple of corals like morphs to let them settle in and help the tank along. Slower you take the tank by adding new stock to the tank, better off you are, Unless you want to run into issues, as faster you rush the tank, Quicker issues with start with algare & levels of the tanks. as i rushed my last time and i know the issues that will arise as it such a small tank.
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Re: Wally's* 4x2x2 money pit

Postby neilsonw » Mon 20 Feb, 2012 9:35 pm

The cycle continues...

The coral hitch-hikers that have survived the cycle are getting there colour back, and it looks like I'm getting little colonies of zoa's. :clap:

Latest water tests...

NH4: 0
N02: 0
N03: 0 :-D
Alk: 2.2 meq
Ca: 340
Phos: 0.21

I found an Aiptasia yesterday. I tried to inject it with vinegar but it retracted back into the rock... shoved the needle in after it and injected hopefully got it. :devil:

Cheers
WN
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4x2x2 money pit --- shut down
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Re: Wally's* 4x2x2 money pit

Postby neilsonw » Wed 14 Mar, 2012 1:27 pm

so what new...

have done nothing to the tank except water changes and things seem to be going well.

latest tests:

temp: 26.2
Sal: 1.024
NH4: 0
NO2: 0
NO3: 0
pH : 8.48
Alk: 2.3 meq
Ca: 420
PO4: 0.02
Mg: 1230

I've included pictures of some of the corals that have survived, some are a little blurry (sorry). Not sure if i've called them the right names, have posted them for an ID on the forums but no takers yet.

1:? encrusting monti
Image

2: ?brain carol
Image

3: ?Fungia, thought it was an anemonae, but it has a hard skeleton where its attached to the rock. Have about 3 of these around on various rocks.
Image

4:? another brain coral (under the brown algae).
Image

5: no idea - big, covering the top of the rock. were initially white, now brown and getting fluoro green around the edges.
Image

6: been told this some type of plating coral, have 2 separate colonies of these:
Image

let me know if i'm right or wrong and what these possibly are.

Cheers.

WN
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4x2x2 money pit --- shut down
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