Benapilot's SCA 150 Upgrade

benapilot

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Hello R2R community!

I've been in the saltwater aquarium hobby for about 10 years. I started with a 46 gallon bow front which I upgraded to my current 75 gallon about 5 years ago. Build thread here. It's been a great adventure with ups and downs. I got a steal of a deal on the 75. It's old and used with lots of scratches on the glass. Over the last few weeks I've been contemplating upgrading....

Here is my current set up:
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I love an "open concept" sump area to work:

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Since my LFS has nothing on hand, I started the obsession... er... research! Lots of Google and YouTube!
Being in Alaska, none of the companies' FREE SHIPPING apply so I had to that into account. I looked at Red Sea, Innovative Marine, Planet Aquariums, Fiji Cube, Glass Cages.... What I really wanted was something 60" long, nothing more than 24" deep and no taller than my armpit! I ran across SC Aquariums and their prices by far are the best. With shipping SC was still less than half than the other guys.

SC Aquariums 150 gallon, drilled for the Synergy 16" overflow.... ORDERED! Ship date Oct. 25.
Screen Shot 2020-10-22 at 4.10.41 PM.png


Instead of the Synergy Overflow, I decided to go with the Exotic Marine Systems 32" overflow. I really like the weir design Taylor has. I'm hoping it's super silent! It should be arriving in the next week or so.
Screen Shot 2020-10-22 at 4.13.44 PM.png


Next I need something to put the aquarium on. A friend has a welding/fabricating side business... HIRED!
It'll be made from 2" steel tubing with a 30" base, 24" top, open front and back. The sump will take up 36" underneath, giving me a couple feet for my Kalk reactor, dosing containers, and some sort of electronic equipment cabinet/mounting board. I'll skin it with a magnetic wood facade like my current tank. I really like the fact that I can take the whole front off to do any major cleaning/work under there.
I'll get some pictures of that soon.

SC Aquarium owners.... How do you like yours?
I almost bought the rimless version of the 150, but it was going to cost about $600 more. Hopefully I won't look at that eurobrace and think, "why didn't I spring for the rimless???"

Good choice on the Exotic Marine Systems overflow?

Equipment List:

1- SCA 150 Eurobrace Aquarium drilled for external Synergy Overflow 60x24x24
2- Custom built steel stand 38" tall with 60x24 top and 60x30 base
3- Exotic Marine Systems Overflow with 32" Weir and 1" Drains
4- AI Hydra Lights 26-52-26 hanging from the ceiling
5- Maxspect Gyre XF 130 controlled via Icacap Interface
6- Two AI Nero 5
7- Bashsea ELOS Smart Series Sump 36x24x16
8- BRS Carbon Reactor
9- LifeReef SVS3-24 Protein Skimmer powered by a Jebao DCP-8000
10- Neptune COR15 return pump. (possibly run 2 of these).
11- Neptune APEX.
12- AWC with 2 SpectraPure pumps (drain pump at the tank, fill pump in laundry room with resevoir).
13- ATO with a SpectraPure pump feeding onto...
14- Icecap KM-120 Kalk Stirrer

I think that covers everything...
 
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benapilot

benapilot

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Thanks, @MERKEY! I'm super excited about the process!!

The Sump:

I got a super deal locally for a Bashsea ELOS sump. A professional aquarium guy in the area ordered one and it showed up with some shipping damage (crack near the top of one of the baffles). I'm sure he got a new one, then offered this one on our local reefer Facebook group. This thing is HUGE! 36"x24"x16". It's their "smart series" with three sections, 3 x 1.5" drains and their plastic filter floss stuff going into the return section. It will be more than enough for my Life Reef skimmer and I may even figure out how to get my BRS carbon reactor to stand up in there. I really like the probe holder and all the dosing holders; plenty for my needs: Calcium, Alkalinity, NoPox, AWC Drain, AWC Fill, ATO. I can even have Calcium and Alkalinity in two separate chambers so there aren't any precipitation issues.

IMG_4347.jpeg


It looks to me the crack is superficial. I don't think there will be a lot of pressure on that baffle to make the structural integrity an issue.

Anyone have any advice on configuring this thing??
 

MERKEY

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Thanks, @MERKEY! I'm super excited about the process!!

The Sump:

I got a super deal locally for a Bashsea ELOS sump. A professional aquarium guy in the area ordered one and it showed up with some shipping damage (crack near the top of one of the baffles). I'm sure he got a new one, then offered this one on our local reefer Facebook group. This thing is HUGE! 36"x24"x16". It's their "smart series" with three sections, 3 x 1.5" drains and their plastic filter floss stuff going into the return section. It will be more than enough for my Life Reef skimmer and I may even figure out how to get my BRS carbon reactor to stand up in there. I really like the probe holder and all the dosing holders; plenty for my needs: Calcium, Alkalinity, NoPox, AWC Drain, AWC Fill, ATO. I can even have Calcium and Alkalinity in two separate chambers so there aren't any precipitation issues.

IMG_4347.jpeg


It looks to me the crack is superficial. I don't think there will be a lot of pressure on that baffle to make the structural integrity an issue.

Anyone have any advice on configuring this thing??
Nice score!!
 
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benapilot

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This afternoon I visited my friend who's welding up my stand. So far so good!
I had him make the base 6" deeper than the top so 1) there is a straighter run for the plumbing, and 2) allow for a little room in front of the sump.
He's going to weld on a cross brace on the top and bottom to help support the tank on top, and the sump on the bottom. Monday he'll take it to the powder coat shop and have it done in either orange or dark gray, depending on what's on hand.

IMG_0006.jpeg


IMG_0005.jpeg
 
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benapilot

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The stand is most likely getting powder coated today or tomorrow.

My collection of new tank stuff is growing.

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Hydra 52 - I’ll add it to my existing two 26s with 12” EXT rail between them. So I’ll have 26 - 52 - 26 over the 5’ tank I’ll see how these work. Down the road maybe I’ll look into upgrading.

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My Exotic Marine Systems overlflow was delivered yesterday. Looks to be a quality product! I used Taylor’s sump baffle kit back when I built my current 75 (Video here). He’s great to deal with and I’m happy to support him again! Anyone know how the inter box fits relative to the eurobrace? I foresee a problem cleaning it

I ordered a bunch of plumbing fittings from BRS during their customer appreciation event- here’s hoping for a surprise in my box! Should be here early next week. Sadly they were out of orange PVC... Amazon had some, though.

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I also got a Nero 5 wavemaker off eBay. I’ll probably get one more. For water movement I’ll have the two sump returns, my Gyre and the two Nero 5. Hopefully that will be enough.

My electrical needs have surpassed the Apex power bar and my existing DJ power strip- so I got one more of those. No more household extension cords with multiple power bricks hanging off it!

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And finally, my aquarium has apparently come ashore in Los Angeles. It’ll make its way to SCA HQ this week, then shipped to me in Alaska shortly thereafter!
 
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benapilot

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SC Aquariums called yesterday saying my tank will be shipped next Tuesday! Probably 10 days transit to Alaska... Thanksgiving surprise!

I built the base. 3/4” plywood with pvc siding/trim material around border to make it a drip tray. I sealed the seams so if there is a leak somewhere it’ll be contained and my Ring water detector should let me know. I’ll prime, then paint with Appliance Epoxy for a waterproof glossy finish.

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Now I’m in the planning stages for my equipment mounting. This probably won’t be the final configuration. Any advice here is welcome.
I’ll use 3/4” x 7 1/4” pvc trim boards. Waterproof and easy to use without any prep!
I’m still unsure what will go between this and the sump. I still need to mount my dosing pump and possibly wireless router, plus space for power bricks and the rat’s nest of wires.
This will be just inside the stand facing left.

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* my piece of cardboard wasn’t big enough... the bottom piece will be the same width as the two above.
 

Chris Spaulding

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I am following along with this as I too have the same tank being shipped out on Tuesday. Question I have for you is about the overflow as I can not get Exotic to return an email to confirm that their over flow will fit the energy template. I too would like to use their 32 "overflow but I want to make sure before I order it.
 
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benapilot

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We must have gotten in on the same shipment because mine ships Tuesday as well!

Taylor at Exotic Marine Systems sent me this when I asked about it:

“Any of our overflows fit the synergy 16" injection molded overflow hole pattern.

Taylor”

I’m taking his word for it! I’ll know in a couple weeks!
 
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benapilot

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My aquarium is somewhere in the Gulf of Alaska! Delivery set for Wednesday!

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Meanwhile, I’ve been working on the equipment rack for the stand. I’ve got plenty of room for all the components plus a little room for expansion. Not sure what I’ll do behind it... I’ve ordered some 3D printed power brick mounts. When those come, I’ll figure out how to mount those.
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Ef4life

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Awesome start. Im Planning on Getting the same tank for when I upgrade, and I plan on welding up a steel stand myself. Looking forward to your build for ideas on mine.
 
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benapilot

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Happy Thanksgiving!!

My aquarium arrived today! A friend’s son works for the shipping company and he was the one to drop it off!

As others have observed with SCA aquariums, the pallet was a bit mangled, but the tank was safe and secure, free from any damage.

A friend came and helped heave it up on the stand. I’ll spend the next month or so plumbing, etc. (minus our two week Christmas vaca in Hawaii).

* this is after cutting the straps and starting to open it up
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*
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I’ve got it facing the wall for better access...
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...pay no attention to my junky garage, lol!...
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