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Apalsson's new 6x2.5x2.5 tank - RIP

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Apalsson's new 6x2.5x2.5 tank - RIP

Postby apalsson » Sat 24 May, 2008 6:45 am

For a while, I have been pondering various options to address the shortcomings in my existing setup and especially the space restrictions the current cabinet has, but it's a bog-standard 700mm tall cabinet from Strictly in Sydney. Due to the lack of height, I couldn't fit full sized skimmers or any other equipment in the cabinet, as the maximum height of anything there was 600mm and even a squeeze to do that.

We went through various scenarios including tearing down the tank and replacing the cabinet with a taller one but finally decided to simply get a full new setup and do it properly this time.
We would then sell off the old tank and cabinetry but that tak served me for many years as a planted freshwater tank.

Inspired by Reef Dwellers new 6x2.5x2.5 setup (sorry Brenton if I'm stealing ideas from you, at least I give you the credit here :) ), I ordered a new tank and sump from Dennison at MaryAnne's Aquariums in Brisbane and got a local welding place to build me a stand.

Because the size is quite similar to the old tank, I can use most of the existing equipment from the old 6x2x2 setup. In addition and taking advantage of the new stand / cabinet, I also ordered a new "Turbo Special" Beckett skimmer which will get built in the next couple of weeks.
I already have one of Turbo's dual-chamber Calcium Reactors and having seen the quality of his work, I had no hesitation of getting one of his skimmers.

Details are:

Stand:
950mm tall, welded of 50x50mm, 3.5mm thick aluminium. 1/2" plywood on top and bottom. Reinforcement gussets in corners to reduce the risk of any lateral movement. Level adjusters under each leg to adjust to less than perfect floors. Made by Marks Mobile Welding in Ballina NSW

Tank:
6' x 2.5' x 2.5', central weir. AquaMedic overflow combs on weir. 12mm sides and 13.5mm base. Made by Dennison at MaryAnne's Aquariums at Browns Plains QLD

Sump:
48" x 24" x 18". This sump is a variation of one of Dennison's design which has been used in several places including AusMadDog's, Reef Dwellers and others. Made by Dennison at MaryAnne's Aquariums at Browns Plains QLD

Flow:
2 x 1 1/2" drains in the tank plus one 1" return line. I plan to use Guv's successful Syphon and backup Durso configuration.
7000L/Hr Hailea HX-6850 return pump.
2 x Tunze 6101 Stream Pumps and a Tunze Multi-Controller. I will probably add a couple of Andries's XWave pumps at a later stage but in the short term, the Tunze kit and a couple of 5000L/Hr Sunsun pumps should suffice.

Filtration:
I have some 120Kg Live Rock plus another 30Kg or so of man made base rock in my existing tank and will transfer that over to the new tank.
Turbo Beckett skimmer with a 7000L/Hr feed pump
DSB and Refugium in the sump

Lighting:
I currently have a 3 x 250W Metal Halide light fixture with 14K globes that I will use in the short term. Once the budget recovers a bit, I want to get 3 x Lumenarc reflectors with external ballasts and some CoralVue 12K globes.

Other equipment:
A Turbo dual chamber Calcium Reactor
JBL CO2 regulator and pH controller
A small cannister filter (1400L/Hr) where I want to have Rowaphos, carbon or possibly both. At a later stage, I might add a FBF for this.
AquaMedic Niveaumat SP3000 auto top-off unit

The transfer of the livestock from the old tank to the new one won't be a simple task because the new tank will have to go where the old one currently is. Luckily, I don't have many sensitive invertibrates in there but I have some corals and fish and will have to make sure they all move to their new home safe and sound. I'm open to suggestions on how best to do this.
Last edited by apalsson on Mon 06 Apr, 2009 5:05 am, edited 9 times in total.
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Postby Reef Dweller » Sat 24 May, 2008 9:29 am

Thre is no need to be sorry or give me credit as I have stolen other people's ideas from this forum. That's the beauty of this forum, lots of ideas to draw from.

I can't wait to see some pics!
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Postby Adam007 » Sat 24 May, 2008 10:37 am

Woohoo cant wait to see some pictures Ari !
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Postby apalsson » Sat 24 May, 2008 2:56 pm

Unfortunately, it will be a while till we have any photos because it's all still at the planning stage.
I'm hoping to have the tank in a week or two and the stand should be ready towards the end of the week.

I ordered the Hailea pumps this morning (from Hong Kong) and based on previous experience, it usually takes 5 - 7 days.

Until then, planning and pondering :)
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Postby apalsson » Sat 31 May, 2008 7:49 am

A slight change of plan re the stand.
The welder keps palming me off claiming to be busy and I didn't seem to be able to get a firm date from him so I went elsewhere.

The new stand will be steel, 50x50mm 2.5mm wall thickness and will be ready on Thursday.
They will be welding 6mm steel pads underneath each leg with level adjusters simlar to this one:

Image

These level adjusters have 16mm bolts and are rated for plenty of weight.
This way, I can easily adjust the stand to any imperfections in the floor without inducing any twisting or warping.

Yesterday, I went and saw Dennison from Mary-Anne's, but he is building the tank and the sump for me.
Apparently, the sump is ready and the tank should be ready by the end of next week.
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Postby apalsson » Sun 15 Jun, 2008 9:01 am

Finally received the stand:

Image

These are the adjustable feet. Rated for 1,000Kg each. There will be 6 of them under the stand. The bolts are stainless steel and the nuts that were welded into the stand are stainless steel as well:

Image

I'm expecting the tank and the Turbo Skimmer any day now
Last edited by apalsson on Sun 15 Jun, 2008 9:13 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Reef Dweller » Sun 15 Jun, 2008 9:08 am

What type of coating are you going to finish the stand with?
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Postby apalsson » Sun 15 Jun, 2008 9:12 am

Reef Dweller wrote:What type of coating are you going to finish the stand with?


Brenton,

I have etch primer that supposedly is made specifically for galvanized steel and some marine grade enamel to go on top.
The guy in the shop told me this was the strongest combination possible except for two-pack paints.
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Postby Reef Dweller » Sun 15 Jun, 2008 9:23 am

Sounds like the goods.
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Postby apalsson » Sun 22 Jun, 2008 9:05 am

I'm slowly making some progress, albeit slowly.
I had to send the stand back to the fabricator because I wasn't satisfied that the top was 100% flat. It has now come back and is dead-flat.

Image

I also received a new skimmer from Turbo. It's one of his fantastic Beckett skimmers except this one is recirculating as well.

According to Turbo, recirculating Beckett skimmers are typically dual-Becketts but he agreed to add recirculating ports on this one to see how it performs.
Needless to say, the workmanship on this skimmer is the same excellent workmanship as always from Turbo

Image

Image

Early next week, I will pick up the tank and sump from Dennison at Mary-Anne's in Browns Plains, Qld.

I have also ordered lighting from Michael at Reefing Life.
These are electronic ballasts and diamond reflectors from DE Lighting.

Hopefully, the lights will be in within the next couple of weeks.
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Postby Turbo » Sun 22 Jun, 2008 11:30 am

Ari looking at those pics it looks like we could have gone a lot taller on the skimmer or are the pics deceiving?
All the best Peter.
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Postby apalsson » Sun 22 Jun, 2008 12:10 pm

Turbo wrote:Ari looking at those pics it looks like we could have gone a lot taller on the skimmer or are the pics deceiving?


I think the photos may be a bit deceiving.
Your measurements were spot on !!
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Postby billet » Sun 22 Jun, 2008 3:26 pm

Just a quick question on the height adjustments on the stand? Are you sure that stainless nuts were welded into the stand? Welding stainless into galvanized steel will generally result in a very brittle weld which will fail under load. Even if all the gal is ground off, there will still be a thin smear that will cause small cracks to develop in the toe of the SS weld.

The only true way to remove any gal deposits is to acid wipe the area what will be welded. After any welding you need to perform NDE looking for cracking beneath the galvanized coating in any areas that has reached 280F. An eutectic of tin, and/or bismuth (galvanizing alloys) and zinc can form that can penetrate the grain boundaries of the steel cause them to crack.

If no acid dip is available, another practice is to 'whip' the welds. It's a technique where the electrode is moved forward and up from the puddle to allow it to cool and to volitize some of the material in front of the progressing weld.

Anyways, im sure all of you are bored with my babble, but I hope for your case your welders knew this.


:cheers:

Chris
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Postby apalsson » Sun 22 Jun, 2008 3:36 pm

Hi Chris,

Someone else brought this up earlier and I checked with the welders.
I was wrong in the way that the welded nuts are not stainless steel but normal hard steel nuts.

Most of the weight is carried by the locknuts that are below the 5mm steel plate in the base of the legs with the welded ones being there for height adjustment.

Regards

Ari
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Postby kirsto71 » Sun 22 Jun, 2008 9:36 pm

Ari

I will be watching this one closely. I am keen to set up a new tank and i plan to go with a steel stand. I will be keen to see how you 'skin' the stand. Especially how you plan to connect the 'skin' to the steel work.

Could you also tell me where you got the feet from.
Cheers
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Postby apalsson » Fri 27 Jun, 2008 8:27 pm

Today, we picked up the tank and sump from Dennison.

Excellent workmanship as always and a great pleasure to visit.

As you can see, there was quite a task-force waiting to carry the tank inside from the car :)

I'm temporarily setting the tank up in my garage while I sort out plumbing, electrical, lighting and other detail and will then shift it into where it will replace my old 6 footer.

Image

Image

It was tough to lift it up on the standL

Image

Image

It definately takes a step ladder to work on this tank :)

Image

Sump in place:
Image

This sump is one of Dennison's famous multi-compartment sumps.
It's 48" x 25" x 18" and has a box for the overflow, a DSB, media compartment, refugium and finally a return box.

Image

Here is the sump in place and the new recirculating Beckett from Turbo

Image

A Hailea 6550 pump pulls the water out of the box and injects into the Beckett nozzle. A separate feed from the overflow line connects to another port on the skimmer box and will be adjusted for roughly 2,500L/Hr
We think this will be more effective than just a high volume feed through the Beckett with no recirculation.
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Postby AuS MaDDoG » Sat 28 Jun, 2008 1:30 am

:clap: Lookin Great !! :clap:
:cheers:
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Postby apalsson » Sat 28 Jun, 2008 6:48 am

This is the rough layout of the sump.
It's probably familiar to most who have seen Dennison's sumps but the layout is quite similar.

Some baffles have been added from previous designs and the Refugium area has been extended.

Image
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Postby Rusty1 » Sat 28 Jun, 2008 10:23 am

Awesome looking tank Ari. Cant wait to see it stocked.

I am very keen to see how this skimmer goes!!!!!!
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Postby apalsson » Sat 28 Jun, 2008 11:15 am

Rusty1 wrote:I am very keen to see how this skimmer goes!!!!!!


Mate, so am I and I bet so is Turbo, given it's the first single-Beckett recirculating skimmer he makes. :) :thumbsup:

On a different subject, I have been in contact with Paul from Clear Oceans and he is willing to deliver NSW all the way down here but obviously, recent high fuel costs contribute to the overall cost of delivery.

I'm keen to know if there are other reefers in the area who might want a delivery of top quality chear sea water from Paul.
If I get two or three others onto this, the delivery cost really wouldn't be high
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Postby tredog » Thu 03 Jul, 2008 12:44 pm

Hey Ari,

Just a thought on your tank 'swap'. For rock and corals just pick up a few bunnings/$2 shop tubs and put a heater and powerhead in each of them. Drain some tank water into them. Put bulk of your rock in their own heated circulated tub and then the corals in another tub with just the live rock they are attached to. That should be enough to keep them happy for quite a few hours of transfer times.

Another helpful suggestion. Leave room for the corals to expand. Factor this in! I have alot of corals expand alot more than I expected to in a tank move and didn't have the tub space I needed. It was a nervous time!

Looking good!

:cheers:
If my wife asks I'm researching electricty providers and not buying anything online!!!!!
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Postby apalsson » Thu 03 Jul, 2008 3:06 pm

Thanks Tre,

Luckily, I don't have many corals and I will probably move them into my office tank for a week or two while I change over.

I am also lucky enough to have found someone who will make a NSW delivery on the day, so there is another 1300L or so that I don't have to store in containers.

The smaller of the fish will be put into a 3' tank I have. This leaves the big Naso Tang only, but I will have a couple of 200L containers handy on the day and will fill them up with water from the old tank.

This all sounds very easy but I'm still in no doubt that it will be one heck of a weekend :)
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Postby apalsson » Sat 05 Jul, 2008 3:24 pm

I haven't had a lot of time to spend on the tank lately but have made some progress on the plumbing though.

There are two 2" drains. One is from a 2" Durso which splits into the inlet box in the sump and the media chamber. Each branch has a valve to allow me to adjust the flow either way at will.
There is a "loop" or a waterlock in this drain to reduce possible noise from rushing water.

Image

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The other drain is from an emergency standpipe and goes directly into the inlet box in the sump. This pipe is set a bit higher than the durso and is meant to kick in if the main Durso gets blocked.

Image

The return line is a 1" line and I have tapped off it in two places. The first one directs any flow directly back into the return box. I'm doing this to be able to adjust the return flow if I find the flow through the sump too much.

The second one is where I tapped in a John Guest stop-tap for a feed line to the Calcium Reactor.

Image

The recirculation pump for the skimmer is quite large, but it's a Hailea HX6550 pump.

Image

Finally, an Eden 159 pump sits in the inlet box and feeds the skimmer and chiller. Both branches have valves to allow me to play with the flow at will.

When I installed the bulkheads, I applied a bit of silicone on both sides of the rubber seal ring and tightened them the best I could.

It's not easy to tighten these 2" bulkheads, especialy when the nuts are up in a cavity from the plywood top of the stand and the foam. I ended up getting them tight and nice though.

Tomorrow (if time permits) will be the first leak test.
Fingers crossed
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Postby Adam007 » Sat 05 Jul, 2008 3:44 pm

Wow Ari great work on the plumbing there, that 2" durso looks huge !

Are you going to leave it all setup in your garage or are you just getting it all together and moving it into the house when the day comes ?
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Postby apalsson » Sat 05 Jul, 2008 5:02 pm

Adam007 wrote:Are you going to leave it all setup in your garage or are you just getting it all together and moving it into the house when the day comes ?


I'm getting everything ready and built and once everything is working well, I'll pull down the old 6-footer and put this one in its place.

Will make quite a weekend when that happens :)

I'm still waiting for the lights to arrive. I'm expecting them in next week some time
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Postby AuS MaDDoG » Sun 06 Jul, 2008 10:52 pm

:clap: :clap: Looking great Ari!! nice work on the plumbing. Looking forward to seeing it all up and running.
:cheers:
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Postby boostn_noobie » Wed 09 Jul, 2008 10:06 am

Looks amazing without anything in there! Good luck and look forward to seeing the finished product!
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Postby dougie » Wed 09 Jul, 2008 1:19 pm

very nice tank! r u going mixed reef or sps?
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Postby monkeymagic » Wed 09 Jul, 2008 1:58 pm

just a quick Q.

is there going to be micro bubble issues for your skimmer pump if it is from the drain section from your main tank?

Cheers
Henry
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Postby apalsson » Wed 09 Jul, 2008 4:14 pm

r u going mixed reef or sps?


I'll probably have a mixed reef to begin with because I'm relatively new to reef keeping and want to try to stick with what I can handle. I may gradually add SPS as time goes on

monkeymagic wrote:is there going to be micro bubble issues for your skimmer pump if it is from the drain section from your main tank?


Shouldn't be. The outflow from the skimmer will go the full circle in the sump so I'm hoping I won't have that problem.
It is all trial and error though because as far as I'm aware of, recirculating Becketts are not that common.
Turbo would be better suited to comment on this if he sees this post
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