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Janice & Rob's 9x2x2 (Feb 2010 TOTM Winner)

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Janice & Rob's 9x2x2 (Feb 2010 TOTM Winner)

Postby jac2610 » Sun 15 Jun, 2008 4:52 pm

Introduction:
After nearly 15 years of reefkeeping, I never got around to actually posting a tank journal....so I'll start with a summary of how I ended up here and try and be a bit more diligent from here on in in updating.

We started out with our first marine tank in 1993ish being a standard 6 ft tank after keeping tropicals for a few years. We bought it second hand from someone who had literally let it go and when we viewed it we couldn't see through the water it was that dark green. We ended up with a couple of fish and some live rock and LOTS of algae but it was a start. This was our learning tank and I must admit we were pretty basic back then with little or no testing, bad lighting and bio balls....(don't tell anyone!!)

After moving house we custom built our own stand and hood but then I saw a beautiful stand on ebay with stained glass windows in the doors and everything and so we moved up at an 8foot tank but this was a bit of a disaster phase as the fake rock wall had little water flow and the lighting was pretty bad and the custom made sump and skimmer were badly planned and built and we ended up selling this about 2.5 years ago around the same time we discovered MASA and worked out we could be doing things so much smarter.

To cut a long story short we bought this current setup up from a MASA member although fairly basic in setup it has been a great system to run and we've now upgraded it to be pretty self sustaining and less work....so now onto our 9x2x2....

System Objectives: We have a mixed reef tank and have a bit of everything and anything. We still have one of the original corals from our very first tank 15 years ago so despite our ups and downs all has come together well...except now we've run out of room!!

System Type: Mixed Reef

Display System:

Strike up Date: Current tank 2005

Display Tank: 9x2x2 + sump ..all up around 1000litres

Display Lighting: 3 x 250W metal halides

Stand: White custom made timber cabinet 2800mm long x 780mm high...We raised this up on a base section another 170mm to bring the display tank viewing height up a bit higher as it is usually viewed standing up in our main kitchen area.

Hood: 2800mm x 500mm highFully open at the top with 6 totally removable doors which is great for access for cleaning and good ventilation

Sump: 710mm long x 460mm high x 460mm deep split into two with one side being the refugium and the other with the return pumps and protein skimmer

Refugium Lighting: 1 x large compact fluro with reflector


Support systems:

System Water: artificial salt water - trying to be more diligent with water changes normal water change 200litres being 20% more serious 40% 400litres

Display Water circulation: 1 x tunze 6500 2 x laguna 7000 on closed circuits

Return Pump: 2 x 2500 return pumps

Skimmer: don't know brand but skims nicely sitting inside the sump

Evaporation Top Up: Used to be manual but we recently upgraded to a tunze osmolater which sits in a large plastic tub inside the cupboard and has been a the best thing we added on. Use RO water to top up.

Calcium reactor: Reef Octopus calcium reactor


Current Water Chemistry:
Nitrates: around 10ppm
Phosphates: 0ppm
Alkalinity: 11dkh or 4 meq/l
Calcium: 400 - 450ppm
Salinity / Specific Gravity: 1.027


Inhabitants:
1 pair oscellaris clowns hosting in an elegance coral
1 x Blue Tang
1 x Australian brown tang
1 x Foxface
1 x Lipstick Tang
1 x Thick Lips wrasse
1 x Flame hawk
1 x coral hopper
1 x pyjama fish
1 x large blue starfish
1 x coral banded shrimp
1 x burnt sausage
1 x large urchin (banned to the sump for knocking things over)

Images:

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This is the fifteen year coral....see picture above ...directly above the blue tang is the bladder/bubble coral still going great guns...
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:banana:

edit - just tidied up some bold tags
Last edited by jac2610 on Sun 15 Jun, 2008 8:20 pm, edited 4 times in total.
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Postby tradam » Sun 15 Jun, 2008 5:03 pm

Very nice..

Which is the 15 year old coral?
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Postby Beaker » Sun 15 Jun, 2008 5:15 pm

Nice tank!

How is the calcium reactor holding up? What model is it?
Matt - the laserman.. pew pew
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Postby RyanWA » Sun 15 Jun, 2008 5:30 pm

Absolutely Beautiful

Nice Work :)
Proud MASWA Member :clownfish:
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Postby colinM » Sun 15 Jun, 2008 5:32 pm

Fantastic, any pics of sump set up underneath ??

Regards Col.
Reefs- "True Elegance Speaks Quietly But With Great Authority".
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Postby monkeymagic » Sun 15 Jun, 2008 7:53 pm

THat is one awesome tank!~

Sweet!

I would be interested in the engine under the hood too!

hehehe

Cheers
H
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Postby jac2610 » Tue 17 Jun, 2008 2:43 pm

I'll try and take some more pics when I get my camera back from loan.

The Calcium Reactor is a CR-140 Reef octopus. It's held up pretty well but find it needs a good clean out of the tubing to keep it flowing properly with all the calcium build up. and find you need to keep an eye on it to make sure the flow hasn't stopped or the little feed pump is running ok. The calcium levels really came up with the use after a few months...so much better than trying to manually drip kalkwasser especially as I was needing to drip 4-5 litres a night to get the required levels...this is a god send as I love the nice and easy option!! I'm really lazy at heart :nono: Bought it from Reefing Life and Michael gives wonderful support and helped me through the setup as it doesn't come with any sort of instructions which is frustrating for newbies to calcium reactors and I'm still on my first Co2 cylinder and it's now been running 14 months.

Currently battling a large outbreak of aptasia which I've never had before until about 6 months ago...must have come as a hitch hiker on a piece of coral and now it's trying to take over my tank. ( I though only xenia was such a noxious weed!!) After trying everything I could (see other threads)..I'm now seriously considering taking my beloved flame hawk and coral hopper back to the LFS so I can introduce peppermint shrimp to try and take them out...sad decision as the flame hawk has been my fav fish for a long time now... :crossfingers: hope this works or I'll be more than :furious:
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Postby dougie » Tue 17 Jun, 2008 6:05 pm

beautiful tank, great job! :thumbsup:
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Postby inferno6688 » Tue 17 Jun, 2008 6:29 pm

awesome tank mate! :thumbsup:

would love to see pics on the gear inside the cabinet :)
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Postby StripestheEel » Wed 18 Jun, 2008 1:15 am

Cool Bananas!
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Postby jac2610 » Sun 06 Jul, 2008 5:08 pm

OK I've bitten the bullet and went fishing last weekend with a size 12 hook and some line...and finally caught my flamehawk and the coral hopper and returned to the shop....waiting on the peppermint shrimp to arrive....this aptasia is going to be the death of me :furious: Took the opportunity to take some snaps of the equipment underneath though and I'm convinced hubby to wire up some blue neons for moonlighting which gives a lovely subtle effect at night.

OK to the new photos...

1st one is overview of the space under the tank

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Starting from the left the first space holds the powerboard hub, calcium reactor and metal halide boxes.

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In the middle is the sump / refugium...you can make out the protein skimmer that sits at the back on the left and in front of that is the two return pumps, heater etc...right hand side has a divider in there is an assortment of live rock, algae plants, urchin etc, compact fluro over which comes on at night opposite to the tank. Not the most glamourous of sumps but functional and compact...great size and can hold the overflow when pumps turned off on main tank...very important!!!!

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Lastly on the RHS is the plastic tub set up with the osmolater I've wrapped the black plastic around the sides to prevent algae growth from the lights in the refugium but leaves a gap that I can see the water level to refill. The lagunas also squeeze in down the end.one behind the tub which you can't see..If I could recommend any pump to anyone these two work horses would be it...pump a huge 7000 litres per hour and never miss a beat

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Postby Cookiemonster » Sun 06 Jul, 2008 5:55 pm

beautiful tank!

i have to admit i didnt read it all but... did u actually catch your fish with a fishing line and hook? how did you stop other fish from biting it?

What kind of bulbs are in your halides? You might want to add some actinics to give the coral better colour (unless your halides a blue).
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Postby jac2610 » Sun 06 Jul, 2008 6:32 pm

Yes I did catch them with a hook and line, I tried every other method known until I got so frustrated ... I had no issues avoiding anything else because the hawk fish were the only two fish in my tank greedy enough to take the bait...excuse the pun...all my tangs are big wooses and hide the moment you put anything unusual in the tank and the clowns I just steered clear of and they don't venture far. The coral hopper got very fat with my various attempts until I got the really small hook so that he became confident enough to take the bait whole instead of stripping the hook. I would have no hope of getting anything else out though short of stripping the tank so overall it was good result.
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update Oct 08

Postby jac2610 » Fri 03 Oct, 2008 10:26 am

Just thought I'd do an update as a few things have changed...Finally feeling cautiously confident that I have won the battle if not the war against the aptasia. Apart from one large one in the main display tank, I pulled out a couple of rocks from the sump that had aptasia and within 48 hours in the main tank they were cleared up...I'd have to lay credit to the butterfly fish :clap: :clap: :clap:

Here's the medal winner right here.

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Also added a few fish now the nasty hawkfish are out...pair flame angels and an indian blenny which is gorgeous.

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Had the MASAOG tank crawl come through my place last weekend and thankfully someone who is a better photographer than me got some great feature shots (thanks again Kerry)

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Postby jac2610 » Fri 03 Oct, 2008 10:36 am

and a few more snaps that I found recently...

one of the few starfish that grew from a leg or legs that grew a body can't remember which!!

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Postby jac2610 » Fri 03 Oct, 2008 6:14 pm

some full tank shots.

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Re: Janice & Rob's 9x2x2

Postby Unagiman » Fri 03 Oct, 2008 9:42 pm

jac2610 wrote:Skimmer: don't know brand but skims nicely sitting inside the sump


I'm pretty sure your skimmer is the same as mine, a aqua medic turboflotor 1000 multi SL.

This tank is truly awesome to see in the flesh, huge and colorful, was a pleasure to see it last weekend! :bow:
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Postby jac2610 » Tue 07 Oct, 2008 5:41 pm

Just added another Canberra Member (Gunmetalfairmont) Mike's Birdnose Wrasse yesterday...already settled in and swimming around happily...looks like he approves of his new home. But gee s/he's hard to photograph!!!

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Postby GunmetlFairmont » Tue 07 Oct, 2008 6:01 pm

I'm glad she has settled in well! and yes it is very hard to get a decent photo as it is so quick!
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Postby Tuskfish » Tue 07 Oct, 2008 7:05 pm

Great looking wrasse.
Glad to see u decided to go for it .
Can u tell I was bent when I wrote this ?
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Postby chuin » Tue 07 Oct, 2008 8:01 pm

Janice

good decision to put the wrasse in. Thanks again for sharing your tank with us on last weeks crawl
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Re: Janice & Rob's 9x2x2

Postby Hammondo » Tue 04 Nov, 2008 8:52 pm

Unagiman wrote:
jac2610 wrote:Skimmer: don't know brand but skims nicely sitting inside the sump


I'm pretty sure your skimmer is the same as mine, a aqua medic turboflotor 1000 multi SL.



Yes thats what the skimmer is.

The tank looks great by the way
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Postby jac2610 » Fri 07 Nov, 2008 2:01 pm

Thank for that Hammondo, gee you've got a good memory?? :clap: As you can see I finally got around to posting a tank journal...how long has it been since we purchased off you...too long? I'm sure. :nono: Thanks again for the great setup it has really been a god send after our former tank setups. We've really only added the calcium reactor and the osmolater to the setup that we got from you.

Just to let you know too the Green Leather coral growing on the LHS of the tank has grown from a tiny hitchhiker on some of the live rock we got with the tank from you... ;) thanks for that.
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Postby Hammondo » Tue 18 Nov, 2008 10:17 pm

jac2610 wrote:Thank for that Hammondo, gee you've got a good memory?? :clap: As you can see I finally got around to posting a tank journal...how long has it been since we purchased off you...too long? I'm sure. :nono: Thanks again for the great setup it has really been a god send after our former tank setups. We've really only added the calcium reactor and the osmolater to the setup that we got from you.

Just to let you know too the Green Leather coral growing on the LHS of the tank has grown from a tiny hitchhiker on some of the live rock we got with the tank from you... ;) thanks for that.


Tank looks great. I think its been at least 3 years hasn't it? I still miss having the big tank at home but had to go before the renovations. Those green polyp lobophytons are one of our most popular corals from the coral farm. So hardy and they look great.
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Postby jac2610 » Tue 12 Jan, 2010 10:43 am

Wow doesn't time fly between posts!! I've been a bit slack and battling a few issues with the calcium reactor but I'm hopefully going to have it back up and running in a few days with a new T piece on the return to feed the reactor to stop the annoying stoppages with the gravity feed. Had to go to a water filter place and get a t piece reducing the 3cm pvc pipe down to the thin john guest fitting for the reactor feed....doesn't look pretty but should do the job and save having another feed pump in the system. I'll let everyone know how it goes.

Did have a successful tank crawl recently so here are some more current pics of the tank and I'll try and post some more on the weekend. As usual the tank is super full and needs a good cull I'm going to have to start making some hard decisions about what to ditch and what to keep. :nut:

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Really hard to get a full tank shot due to the size and it's location without getting heaps of reflections but I'll work on this some more and enlist the hubbie to help and see what I can come up with.
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Postby Macca_75 » Tue 12 Jan, 2010 11:02 am

Great looking tank.

If you want to stop the reflections (and have a SLR camera) buy a polerising (spelling??) filter for the end. Cheap as on Ebay.

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Postby RedSeaSharks » Tue 12 Jan, 2010 11:47 am

Great tank! :clap:
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Postby jac2610 » Tue 12 Jan, 2010 1:31 pm

Good suggestion thanks...I've got lots of light from windows in just about every angle with the tank and I have a big island bench in the kitchen directly in front of the tank so getting the angle just right is difficult and then you lose detail with the sheer size of the image. I might try and piece together 2 or 3 images to get a better effect. but that does take some good coordination or a special camera. but I'll see what I can do.

Note that Macca_75 you have a similar tank and even very similar contents!! watch out for those big leathers...I've had to cull two and still have one to go and the sinulara just goes insane doesn't it!!
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Postby Macca_75 » Tue 12 Jan, 2010 1:34 pm

jac2610 wrote:Good suggestion thanks...I've got lots of light from windows in just about every angle with the tank and I have a big island bench in the kitchen directly in front of the tank so getting the angle just right is difficult and then you lose detail with the sheer size of the image. I might try and piece together 2 or 3 images to get a better effect. but that does take some good coordination or a special camera. but I'll see what I can do.

Note that Macca_75 you have a similar tank and even very similar contents!! watch out for those big leathers...I've had to cull two and still have one to go and the sinulara just goes insane doesn't it!!


Yeah - I've already sold off 4 and have another ready for sale. They just grow like nuts. Esp. now I've replaced the globes

I'm starting to re-stock my fish levels now and love some of yours - esp you naso.
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Postby jac2610 » Tue 12 Jan, 2010 5:09 pm

Best looking fish around I think very elegant. I prefer the blonde one instead of the darker one but each to their own. I bet the male I've got doesn't like to hear me say that!! :devil: I used to have sailfin as well love that fish. Do you find your brown tang really aggressive mines a real pain...can't add anything without it having a go.
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