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180 gallon with fish room build - Waterbox 220.6

Fred2482

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About two months into the new build and currently waiting on items to be shipped so why not use this down time to update the build thread! Rewind a few months ago I decided to upgrade my current 80 gallon (48"x20"x20") reef tank to around a 500 gallon in my basement. Unfortunately, my wife and I can not decide on how we would like to finish the basement. We have been going back and forth for a while and decided to move on to other projects. I could have still installed the tank, however no finished basement would result in no attention..... My answer was to get a new 180 for my office as I work from home the majority of the time and it would get plenty of attention. After getting some quotes from custom aquariums, planet aquariums and looking into Red Sea I was convinced on the Red Sea 900 3XL. That thing is BEAUTIFUL, and I hate euro-bracing. My issue was the tank is literally a few inches too big for my office plans, which I had to change anyways :( . I read some articles about waterbox here on R2R and ultimately decided to give them a try. So far, no regrets. As you will see through out this thread, I did not go with their pre plumbing assembly which looked absolutely awesome! There where times I really wished I would have as I could of had it running in a day. Due to the ultimate goal of the bigger tank I decided to centralize the filtration in the basement which will hopefully be directly behind the larger tank.

Before I go any further, I would like to disclaim, I am NOT the "handy man" type, this was really outside my comfort zone and I spent hours (understatement) reading forums, watching videos and researching almost every aspect of this especially the construction phase.

Below is what I have completed thus far, I ordered the Aquarium on Feb 20th.
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I have tried my best to keep up with this project in the best detailed manner possible for me. I have all receipts in case anyone has any questions in the future such as actual part numbers.
I will attach pictures below in the same order of the list above. From now on I will try to update as items are complete to maintain some sort of organization and try not to miss any of the details.

Fish room before any construction, the wall shown is the hopeful home of the new tank!
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Created wall:

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Raised floor

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Plumbing from Display tank in Office on first floor (don't mind the purple primer, I HATE it. I ordered clear primer, however Amazon decided to send me some sort of water flavoring that my kids actual end up loving)

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Plumbing the return
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Plumbing the drains

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Aquabus cable from fish room to Display tank

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Below is the electric wiring, aquabus cable wiring and Humidity vent. Just as an FYI, both receptacles by the return pump and salt mixing pump have an on off switch that control the outlet, all outlets in the fish room have a pull string from one to another in the case I want to daisy chain devices in the future.

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Plywood Walls, as a note I did add insulation behind the walls.

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Painted floor with epoxy shield and everything else with flex seal

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Drilled holes in Waterbox sump

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Progress... This will change

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Headache of trying to aquascape, dont worry it changed...

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Tank up

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Used E Marco 400, great stuff however definitely a learning curve. Most of my first attempts fell apart and this is what I got finally. I ordered some glue to stick a few of the last rocks that I dont want moving around.

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I utilized 100 lbs of reef saver rock, 4 reef saver base rocks and 8 - 20 lb bags of CaribSea Arag-Alive Fiji Pink sand. Added bacteria to help ammonia/Nitrite cycle.

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Now I am getting my shelves, and cable management boards prepped.

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Wire management board so far consists of Microsoft surface book for apex dashboard, echo dot for voice commands, BRS heater controller, Reef octopus Varios controller, and templates for DOS, Energy bar, Apex, and 2 Neptune modules.

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Still a long way to go. As I am waiting on some items to be shipped I am trying to figure out flow. I am really leaning toward a Gyre, but need lots more research. I hope everyone enjoys the build and I am open to any suggestions, constructive feedback or questions! I will be updating as I progress. If I missed something I do apologize, I tried to sum this up in the best way I could.
 
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Lazys Coral House
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Fred2482

Fred2482

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This weekend I was able to get the shelves up above the sink, the Protein skimmer and the cable management board installed. I adjusted the plumbing for the sump to the stock tank. The Apex is up and running, only utilizing the temp probe currently as I am waiting for probe holder in the mail. After arrival I will clean up the remainder cords. Next weekend will be plumbing the UV and GFO/Carbon reactors with some help received from a separate thread: ( https://www.reef2reef.com/threads/uv-installation.712703/ ). If there is time, I will start plumbing the water storage tanks.

Update on cycling the tank, as stated above I used Turbo start with some Algae Barn NitroCycle. In one week I watched the Ammonia raise up, go down as the Nitrites raised and now the Nitrites have lowered and the Nitrates raised. WOW! I have never witnessed this happen so fast! I will be waiting a few days and then throw a frozen shrimp in to see if the bacteria can handle it! No plans on rushing to add fish, just thought I would share the crazy turn around time with this product.

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Fred2482

Fred2482

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Update:
TurboStart with Nitrocycle seemed awesome, however I decided to add more ammonia to make sure the bacteria could handle fish and it literally went through another small cycle. This time, I let it run through naturally which took around 2 weeks (keep in mind, I have been running the tank for over 1.5 months and used the turbo start during that period).
Still working on the fish room, but I did get what was going to be the fresh water and is now the saltwater storage container set up (Fight with gravity that I lost!). I also got the UV "mounted", its a beast! Next up, fresh water storage (waiting on more optical sensors and another FMM) and the much dreaded WIRE MANAGEMENT :(.

FMM near the UV for flow monitor as well as a few leak detection modules.



FMM for optical sensors on water storage, solenoid for RODI, and a leak detection module.
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Optical sensors
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Help installing the optical sensors from my 16 yo son....
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Fred2482

Fred2482

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Been a bit since my last update. Cycle is complete! Moved my 3 PJ cardinals, 2 zebra barred dartfish to the tank as well as purchased a foxface, 2 red firefish and 2 purple firefish. Started feeding Metroplex mixture as foxface has stringy poop. Lesson learned, just ordered all the items required to start my QT for future livestock.


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I have been fine tuning the water storage and think I have finally got it. Below is the Saltwater (left) and fresh water (right) storage containers. I use Varios pumps with their provided float valve connected to the storage tank as ATO. Works awesome! For now the salt water is added manually by turning pump on and adjusting valve. Both storage containers have optical sensors to monitor water levels as well as activate the apex RO solenoid to refill the fresh (next project). I am currently installing a hose adapter with garden hose on my emergency drain line to drain water outside for water change. 1st test changed 45 gallons in less than 3 minutes! After finalizing solenoid and installing hose for draining I will work on wire management...

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Hose will go here:
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Fred2482

Fred2482

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Started setting up a new QT tank pictured below, and thought why not utilize my current tank that I am transferring from. So I grabbed the clowns, wrasse, corals and all the inverts and moved them to the new tank. Got my salt down to 1.015 (LFS) and will add copper tonight. Picking up some new fish Thursday morning any suggestions on the tangs would be great! (currently leaning towards the Yellow - heard horror stories about purple although they look amazing, Kole/ Tomini and Blue Caribbean)
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The above picture will be future hospital/QT. Below is the original tank transformed into a QT for the Tangs / Anthias. I plan on running copper @2 and adding metroplex. Letting that run for 30 days, then removing with polypads/carbon/water change and adding 2 separate doses of prazipro. Any additional recommendations welcomed. Never QT'd or owned Anthias before.
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Fred2482

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Decided to change it up a bit, Tangs are in QT and I will hold off on the Anthias until I fully understand how to QT them. Currently yellow, Kole and Atlantic blue tang ( juvenile) are in a 80 gallon QT with copper at 2.0 and Metroplex being dosed every other day. They are eating and look amazing, however they are still scared of me for now. They also peck a little, nothing to worry about yet. After about 30 days I will remove copper and start with a few doses of prazi.

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Fred2482

Fred2482

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Been a while since I updated the thread. The following video is an update after 6 months of running. Still need to work on my wire management as well as install my RODI unit on the wall. Dosing is not yet installed as I don't have much coral yet. My parameters are great except for my phosphates, I have recently added some chaeto to bring those down!

 
Lazys Coral House

How concerned are you about high phosphates in your tank?

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