90 gallon Fish and LPS

Siberwulf

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Hey folks, here's my uh.. Build Thread. I put together a plan thread that outlines exactly what I'm trying to do here, so here's it actually happening. Link to Plan Thread: https://www.reef2reef.com/threads/new-90g-tank-long-read-with-a-plan.809528/

Right now, I'm still in Phase 1. That's the stand/tank/plumbing buildout. I opted to make my own stand because I couldn't find anything that felt right for the space. Also, since COVID hit, I've been on a bit of a home-construction kick (bedrooms, media room, craft room for the wifey). With all that said, I'm hoping this thing is over-engineered because that sure beats the alternative. I started with a pile of wood. The general design was following the King of DIY and his Stand Building videos. I plan on using a 29 gallon sump, so having a larger opening for the front was a must. After much consulting on the internets, it went to a 2x6 as a header board, just in case.

I'm going for the clean look, so all screws (outdoor-rated) are recessed and wood-filled. Then things are sanded down. I had some help with the sanding:
Sanding Helper.jpg



Again, the theme here was clean. You can see the finished, pre-paint product. I did take some time to run caulk around all the seams, ensuring no water would drip down and rot things from below. Did I mention I don't want this thing to rot....

Stand Ready for Paint.jpg


Stand Ready for Paint with Door.jpg


For paint, I went with something that should be able to handle some water without completely falling apart. I'll post painted pics once I get a couple coats on there. It's not beautiful yet...

Paint Choice.jpg


I was in some self-debate about white vs black and given there's eventually going to be salt splash, white made more sense. Additionally, this is a pretty tall stand and too much black might end up closing in the space in my office.

Next up was to prep the tank. First thing was to get the back black. Ok, that's a lie. First thing was getting all the stick crap off the tank. Alcohol and a razor were my friend. Made special note to not scratch the heck out of it:

Tank Ready for Paint.jpg


And painted:
Tank Painted.jpg


It'll probably need a couple coats just to be sure. Went with the Krylon since I've read it sticks to glass better:

Tank Paint.jpg


Next up this week is to plumb the tank, finish the stand and put the two together. I've still got to put together sump, which will be another post by itself. Thanks for reading!
 
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Siberwulf

Siberwulf

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Little more progress today. Got another coat of paint on the back of the tank and stand. Also, put the baffles in the sump:

Sump-Pre.jpg


29 gallon Aqueon with a Fuji Baffle Kit:
Sump3.jpg

Sump1.jpg


Sump2.jpg




Now, I did change things up a little bit from the kit. Since I'm going Triton Method, it's just a refugium (about 9.47 gallons), then skimmer, then return pump. It's relatively simple, which is a good thing. I figure, if things go sideways with the Triton, I can rebuild this in an absolutely worst-case scenario.

Next up on the list: Plumbing setup!
 
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Siberwulf

Siberwulf

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Yesterday was a big day! Finally got to the actual Plumbing part of this phase. It's been a while to get here, so I was excited to say the least.

First up was to Dry Fit everything together. In retrospect, I wish Plant Aquarium had done the two 1" holes next to each other, rather than on either side of the 3/4" return. It's not ideal, to say the least, and it caused a bit of strife trying to get all the things in place without putting a nasty 90 degree turn in there.

Here's all the parts laid out. Went with all 45s and a gate valve to keep tuning the Herbie easy. (so happy I did)

Plumbing Parts.jpg


(notice the missing nozzle...BRS left it out by accident. It's on the way, though!)

After dry fitting, it was time to put together the top portion, and attach to the bulkheads (no way am I getting my hand down in that column)

Overflow.jpg

(Main w/Strainer, Return, Wet Emergency)

Bulkheads Installed.jpg


Getting these the right height while not interfering with each other, while not doing any funky bends was...a challenge.

Here's the end product:

Sump Plumbed.jpg


Again, I hate the cross that happens there. It's less than ideal. It works though!

After that, it was time to start filling. I'm essentially going to be constructing this whole thing in the garage, and once it's up and running the way I want to (and the way that I feel is safe enough to bring inside), into the office it goes.

Starting the fill.jpg

(Yes, I cleaned up the mess after this picture)

Here's the sump filled! The caulking didn't leak at all and there's a nice flow to it. Chamber 2 is a little step and noisy, and I'm not sure how to get that to stop...but it does work!)

Sump Filled.jpg


I'm pretty happy with how things turned out. No leaks that I've been able to find (checked tank edges for both sump and DT, checked pipes, checked bulkheads...all seems good.

I also ran a couple tests to determine the appropriate water levels in the sump. I've been able to turn the pump off and it doesn't siphon too much back down into things. Also tuned the Gate Valve to keep my emergency slightly soggy, but not noisy.

Next post will be about getting some more Apex equipment setup. That was....fun...not. (And I'm an IT guy!)
 
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Siberwulf

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Work has been a little bit nutty, but I got some more done over the weekend!

I measured the water depth in the Skimmer portion of the sump and well...it was too tall. Shocker there. It came in at 9.5"

I whipped up a little DIY stand, though. Cost maybe $10 for the PVC and eggcrate.

Skimmer Stand Parts.jpg


Skimmer Stand Assembled.jpg


Skimmer on Stand.jpg


With the stand in there, it's sitting a nice 5.5", which is within the recommended range for the 152-S.
 
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Siberwulf

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I had a quick hot minute to install the RODI setup, too. No judgement on the wall art. Halloween Party gone right.

RODI - Installed.jpg


RODI - Working.jpg


This was pretty straight forward. Worked like a charm, too. No leaks!
 
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Siberwulf

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Won't lie, been kinda lazy about updating this...but here's some updates!

I put the lights on the back of the tank and fired them up. Based the spacing on the BRS analysis of the AI Prime 16s and honestly, they look pretty cool!

Tank and Lights.jpg


Looking to the right of things, I've started a prototype of the mounting board where I'm going to hang the electronics. I figure things are going to last longer the further they are from the actual H2O in there. This isn't a final product at all, though. Here's how it ended up, painted. I put it on hinges so I can get to the back of it, where all the wires are going to be managed.

Board Painted.jpg


I'm not a fan of wires, so as far as the tank goes, most of those are going to be out of the way. I picked up a network cable guard on amazon and mounted it under the back edge. All wires go through there to keep out of the way:

Wire Holder.jpg


Wire Holder Installed.jpg


At this point, I feel pretty good about getting things inside the house and getting some live rock in the tank to start the cycle. I kicked on down to the LFS for some Live Rock. I was hoping to go with Damp Rock, but I really wanted to pick out the pieces myself, and if I get some pets, I deal with them. It's not the end of the world, right? Right. I think.

Tank Inside.jpg


Anyway, I got the sucker inside and put the rock in. I was looking to create quite a bit of negative space for the fish to move in and out of and hide. Also, totally appreciate the notion of "don't get a tank with more height than depth" as acquascaping things was a little tricky. Here's what I ended up with:

Scaped-Done.jpg

Tank Inside With Sump.jpg


With the LR in place, added about 50 lbs of live sand. Trying to get a little jump start on the cycling process. Crossing fingers!

Things look pretty good at this point. Rom was pretty fascinated by things
Sump-Rom.jpg


I also picked up some Chaeto to start the fuge out right:

Sump-Fuge.jpg


This has been a pretty slow process so far. From the time I bought the tank in January to the time I got live rock in it was about 70 days. It's nice to actually see it and hear it in my office as I'm stuck doing the WFH thing.
 
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Got the lights turned on for a little bit and things are looking pretty nice! I'm not going to keep them on long, since I don't want an algae bloom up top.

Tank and Sump Light.jpg
 
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Siberwulf

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Things are looking good. The Chaeto is taking off like crazy, especially with that light (AI Fuge) and an abundance of Nitrates from the cycling process. Here's how it looks today:

Chaeto Growth.jpg


I really didn't love how it was blocking some of the spillover. I decided to make a Chaeto Sammich with some egg crate, zip ties and cheap magnet cleaners (so I can move it up and down as I need to). See how it turned out:

Chaeto Sammich.jpg

Chaeto Sammich 2.jpg


When things get too big, I'll pop it out, trim it and pop it back in. Seems like a good idea!
 

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BRS

Do you own a fish trap and acclimation box or just one or the other?

  • I own both a fish trap and acclimation box

    Votes: 58 16.1%
  • Just a fish trap

    Votes: 43 11.9%
  • Just an acclimation box

    Votes: 98 27.1%
  • Neither

    Votes: 156 43.2%
  • Other (please explain)

    Votes: 6 1.7%

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