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Full Tank Shot
Current Water Parameters (08/28/22)
Temperature: 78.9 - 77.7
pH: 8.00 - 8.15
Alkalinity: 7.1 dKH
Tank: Innovative Marine Fusion 40
Stand: Innovative Marine Stand
Sand: 20lbs of Carib-Sea Special Grade Reef Sand
Lighting: Radion XR30w G4 Pro
Powerhead: Vortech MP10mQD
Heater: Jager 75 Watt
Filtration: Purigen, Chemipure Elite, inTank filter floss
Salt Mix: Tropic Marine Pro-Reef Salt
Two Part: Tropic Marine Original Balling
ATO: Tunze Osmolator Universal 3155
Controller: Apex with PM2, and AWM
RO/DI Unit: Spectrapure CSPDI 90GPD RO/DI system
Skimmer: Aquamaxx HOB-1
Misc Equipment: H20cean Refractometer by D-D, APC UPS, Apex DOS
Blue Leg Hermit crabs
Florida Cerith snails
Nassarius Vibex snails
Tongan Nassarius snail
Pom Pom Crabs (2)
Scarlet Skunk shrimp
Tri-Color Valida acropora
Frogspawn (with purple tips)
Kryptonite candy canes
*Tunze Auto-top off
*Water change 20% every 2 weeks
*Change Purigen and Chemi-pure every 3 months
*Tank was rebooted on 08/06/22
*Tank was upgraded to a Fusion 40 on 02/26/17
*Tank was originally a Nuvo 30L started on 08/31/15
Hello R2R community! I previously had one going on another site (which I still adore), but I've found myself spending more time here. So as a long time R2R lurker, I have decided to officially make the move to settle in over here with a build thread. That being said, my first few posts in the thread are to catch this build up with what I've encountered so far.
In a nut shell I had an established Fusion 40 tank since 02/26/17. The tank had its shares of ups and downs, from corals flourishing to the point of literally giving away frags to local reefers, as well as having healthy corals die without so much as a reason why. The original tank has lived through its single AI Hydra 52 light just suddenly die after years of faithful service, followed by my sheer panic of omg, my corals will all die now without an immediate light replacement, I can't believe I now have to drop hundreds on a new light (I ended up with a Radion XR30w G4 Pro due to a luckily placed sale the same week). I even upgraded the Fusion 40's return pump to the MightyJet 538 when it became all the rage, because reasons. And then there's the infamous, aggressive bout of algae in early 2021 that took almost a year to bounce back from. Good grief Charlie Brown is an understatement . And after finally having come back from the edge of insanity with that algae attack, I had begun to discover the world of NSA aquascaping- and I fell in love. I had never been a fan of my original pile-of-rock aquascape, but at the time the only other alternative I was aware of was complex rigging with acrylic rods and mortar- nothing I honestly wanted to deal with at the time. But watching people make these amazing, personalized sculptures with such a simple process...well....the desire to do the same finally became too much. And with the encouragement of my wife and a local reefer, the decision to move forward with the idea became reality.
I ended up purchasing some of the 'foundation' reef saver rock from BRS so that I could make sure this time around that my rocks had a nice, flat foundation on the glass bottom instead of jagged edges on top of sand. With those pieces as my foundation (no pun intended) I went ahead and started breaking up some left over dry rock I had from my previous build, and went to town in my garage with a bottle of thin BRS super glue . And I have to say, what an absolute blast it was creating my own personalized scape. I must've built and tore down thirty different 'ideas' until taking the official plunge and ultimately landing on my final product.
Not exactly NSA (I may have went a bit overboard with the foundation rock), but I definitely found it more pleasant shape to look at than the pile of of rocks I had before- think of the coral placement possibilities! And lets be honest, its just fun to tell people who see the tank, "See that? Yeah, I sculpted that."
I then began the process of curing the now sculpted dry rock in a plastic brute bin, using Dr.Tim's One and Only (his brand of ammonia). The process took just over a 45 days to complete appropriately, and I gave it another two weeks of consistency before finally committing it to the tank. I then removed the frags, fish, and inverts I had currently in the display tank into a quarantine tank I had setup, along with some of the live rock from the display tank. Once the livestock was safely transferred to the temporary tank, I drained the display tank and removed the current sandbed entirely. I then quickly added my new rockscape so it sat flat on the glass bottom, added about 20lbs of reef grade dry sand (which I had previously rinsed for a few hours and had let dry), and filled the tank with thirty-two gallons of saltwater I had already made that morning (and had left circulating at temp for just this moment).
I then allowed the tank to settle and make sure its parameters matched that of the previous tank, and eventually moved my livestock back over when it was good to do so. And with that, the evolution was complete. Whew. I naturally checked my parameters constantly for the first few weeks, making sure there were no mini-cycle issues but everything thankfully continued to stay on track, and none of my livestock showed any signs of distress. Here is the tank on 08/28/22 (almost three months after cycling when I added the corals):
FrontAnd here are just some fun pictures of my PomPoms
Right side looking left
Left side looking right
Right side looking left
Left side looking right
On 09/24/22 I picked up a bunch of new coral. I grabbed a kryptonite candy cane frag from my LFS, which I’ve been looking everywhere for a frag of (that didn’t cost an arm and a leg per head) and was ecstatic to find it. And then I grabbed the rest from a semi local reefer who always has awesome frags available. I grabbed mostly SPS frags plus a nice frogspawn with purple tips. Hopefully I can get these growing out nicely!
And I'd be remiss if I didn't show off the awesome painting my wife got me on our latest trip to Disney world!
And so now here we are. The tank has been up and running for a bit now and has really hit the ground running. My goal is to pick up a few more fish, specifically I would ultimately like to end up with a pair of clowns, a pajama cardinal, and a royal gramma (some of my favorite fish). The plan is to at least try and pick up the clowns sometime next month or so after I gather some supplies to follow BRS' 80/20 quarantine procedure. I've never quarantined fished in the past, but after loosing my clown last year (which I had had for 3 years) after adding a new fish (both of which died within 2 weeks of the addition), I decided I'm going to start quarantining my fish from now on. I know its not foolproof, but its better than the game of Russian roulette I've always played.
As far as coral stocking, I would like to have a mixed reef with some hearty SPS across the front and back. But all good things in time.
*takes a deep breath* Whew. And that is the meat and potatoes of what has been happening with my tank and I look forward to the future!