27 Gallon Cube

Discussion in 'Cube Aquariums' started by pelphrey, Jul 22, 2015.

  1. pelphrey

    pelphrey Valuable Member R2R Supporter Reef Tank 365 Showcase Editor Build Thread Contributor

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    Might as well track my progress and mistakes on my first reef build. Been in freshwater for over a year, I am over all happy with the setup of my 75 gallon Mbuna tank but I am done experimenting with freshwater. I am actually looking to replace this tank with a 6 foot tank to better fill the space it is in, and also prepare for this to be converted to salt water!

    Onto my first reef build -
    • Marineland 27 Gallon Cube and stand
    • 5.5 gallon tank for my sump
    • Eshopps PSK-75 Skimmer
    • Glass Holes 300 GPH Overflow
    • Jebao RW4
    • 50 lbs of Marco Rock and 40 lbs of Marco Sand (Ordered more for the options)
    • Kessil A160we w/ spectral controller
    • IO Reef Crystals salt
    • Dr Tims Ammonia (Used this to cycle my freshwater tank)
    • I've read mixed reviews on using the API freshwater master test kit to test saltwater. I have the saltwater charts so I'll use it to cycle the tank.
    • Refractometer w/ calibration fluid
    • Hm Digital pH meter
    • Sicce 1.5 Return Pump

    Equipment needed -
    • RO/DI (Spectrapure CSPDI-90)
    • ATO (Tunze 3152)
    • DJ Power Strip
    • Probably go the Bayer route and CoralRX for dips
    • I have a 10 gallon and some equipment laying around for QT
    • Not sure what other test kits I may need at the moment

    My wife and I are expecting our first child at the end of August so the tank has been pieced together slowly, I've purchased nearly all pieces of equipment off various forums. Just have to be patient and shop around.

    Trying to shop smart when it comes to a 6 foot tank to replace my 75 gallon freshwater tank... I understand how this hobby goes and am trying to prepare for freshwater to be gone and saltwater to consume all my money. Since we aren't close to the ocean and love it so much why not build a small foot print of it in our home. The 27 gallon is actually going in our bonus room, so it isn't a high traffic area. My hope is that I do this right and my wife says "We need one of these downstairs".. I can hope!

    All in all I am more so looking forward to the challenge as I have the freshwater Cichlid tank down pretty well.

    Used the DIY Stand template (Rocket Design here on ReefCentral) to build the stand for my 75 gallon -
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    27 Gallon -
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  2. saltyphish

    saltyphish Certified Sand Groomer R2R Supporter Reef Squad R2R Excellence Award

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    Nice start. I agree with using the api test kit for cycling. They are great for that purpose but for more accurate results I prefer other tests. I will say this for the most part with the exception of the phosphate test the rest seems fairly close to what my salifert, and red sea kits test. It is just the alk does not give precise measurements.
     
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  3. Kylecva

    Kylecva Active Member

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    I'm excited to watch you build this! We have the same tank but ours is empty right now!
     
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  4. pelphrey

    pelphrey Valuable Member R2R Supporter Reef Tank 365 Showcase Editor Build Thread Contributor

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    Once my cycle starts I am going to start investing in various test kits. Thanks for the input!

    Couldn't pass up the tank/stand combo last winter when pet smart had them on sale!

    I got my sicce 1.5 pump and Kessil 90 in today. I originally wanted to mount the Kessil differently and not use the gooseneck. But the tank isn't going to be flush on the wall so I couldn't use 80/20 to mount the light. I think the 90 was well worth the $20 as far as looks and being able to raise the light up more.

    Stay tuned. I need to drill the tank, build my sump and plumb the system. After that rinse my sand and rocks. I also need to either go ahead and buy a RODI or get a TDS meter and test my LFS RODI water. If it doesn't test zero I'll have to get the RODI anyway so I may go ahead and get it and start it with my own water.
     
  5. Kylecva

    Kylecva Active Member

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    Is the glass on yours tempered?
     
  6. pelphrey

    pelphrey Valuable Member R2R Supporter Reef Tank 365 Showcase Editor Build Thread Contributor

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    It shouldn't be, there is a guy on youtube who had a 37 gallon marineland cube and he drilled the back.
     
  7. Kylecva

    Kylecva Active Member

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    Awesome! I was just curious, I don't know how you check for that. Lol
     
  8. pelphrey

    pelphrey Valuable Member R2R Supporter Reef Tank 365 Showcase Editor Build Thread Contributor

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    Kessil A160
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    Ignore the mess as this has become a short term storage facility!
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  9. SantaMonicaHelp

    SantaMonicaHelp Valuable Member

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    Nice set up, great start! Can't wait to see how this progresses.

    ~SF
     
  10. pelphrey

    pelphrey Valuable Member R2R Supporter Reef Tank 365 Showcase Editor Build Thread Contributor

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    I got the tank drilled over the weekend as well as sprayed the back and bottom with Plasti Dip. I will have a sand bed, but I wanted to go ahead and spray the bottom of the tank in case I ever decide to take the sand out and run bare bottom. I didn't have the wooden template for the overflow and this is my first time drilling a tank. My concern is that I may have drilled the hole just a hair lower than I wanted to. I wanted my water line above the top plastic trim. I'll know for sure if this is a concern once I have the system plumbed and tested. I have a few solutions. First is to pick up another powerhead if the RW4 doesn't create enough wave movement. Second is to ditch this overflow box and get another box. Third is to mod my stand to hold a 10 gallon sump instead of the 5.5 gallon sump. I want to ensure I have enough free space to fill the sump and not overflow it if the power goes out. Luckily in the 3 years I've lived in this area our power has gone out 3 times with the longest being 10 minutes. So I'll probably put a battery backup on my return pump. Drilling the tank was super easy and it turned out well. Hopefully get some more done this weekend.


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  11. Shep

    Shep Acan Connoisseur Staff Member Team R2R R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Photo of the Month Award Partner Member 2018

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    Looking good! I have that tank too, its really nice.
     
  12. pelphrey

    pelphrey Valuable Member R2R Supporter Reef Tank 365 Showcase Editor Build Thread Contributor

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    Since I drilled the hole to low for the GH overflow I had to go a different route.

    Here is the GH overflow, I want the water level a little higher -
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    Ordered a bigger overflow which now will allow me to run a herbie overflow with emergency drain -
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    And possibly the best purchase yet... My RODI unit! Went with the Spectrapure 90 gpd unit. It is overkill for my 27 gallon cube and 5 gallon sump. But I have plans to go bigger one day and wanted to be ready!

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  13. Devesh

    Devesh Member

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    Very neat setup. Love cubes
     
  14. Khh27

    Khh27 Valuable Member

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    Sweet setup and great start I have a 27c on standby that I an waiting to move to setup they are sweet little tanks. I plan to run a A350w on mine that I already have but have plenty of time to try and a afford a 160 for controllability
     
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  15. go29

    go29 Active Member R2R Supporter

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    Cant wait to see more, awesome start ! My avatar is a shot of the exact same cube as yours (mainland 27gal) . I broke down a 46 bow front as I wanted a tank back in my bedroom, and think this is a fantastic size for a nano cube. Don't forget more pics as you continue to get it started up :)
     
  16. pelphrey

    pelphrey Valuable Member R2R Supporter Reef Tank 365 Showcase Editor Build Thread Contributor

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    Started to dry fit the 1'' plumbing tonight. Need to install the gate valve on the drain and glue all fittings in place. Moving along... Slowly!

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  17. Joshua Cline

    Joshua Cline Member

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    keep it up! so far so good!
     
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  18. pelphrey

    pelphrey Valuable Member R2R Supporter Reef Tank 365 Showcase Editor Build Thread Contributor

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    Thanks!! I'm following the build of a guy on youtube who had a cube like this. With this being my first reef tank build I didn't want to skip any steps. It's been a process and slow at that!
     
  19. steelheader.262

    steelheader.262 Valuable Member

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    Looks like you have a great start.
    Love my Spectrapure
     
  20. Joshua Cline

    Joshua Cline Member

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    Do you have the youtube link? I would love to check it out. Converting to team cube soon :)
     
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