Biocube 32 Reef Build

Imjustabill

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Hi All,

I am new to the R2R (at least from a posting perspective) but figured that I would finally get my tank setup up so that I can start posting pictures, asking questions etc.

When I was a young warthog, my uncle set me up with my very first tank (a 55g breeder with tropical fish). I decided to make it tradition and do the same for my nephew. I got him up and running with a Fluval flex (tropical). I have been out of the hobby for awhile but in the process of setting up my nephews first tank and tweaking the filtration a bit, the passion came back full swing and I was totally blown away with how far the AIO tanks have come since I was last in the market. So, I went out and got myself a biocube 32 to reintroduce myself into reef keeping and scratch the itch that has been festering for years apparently.


Bill's Biocube 32:

The Gear:
  • Steve's LEDs (HurricaneX Controller)
  • 2 Hydor Koralia Nano Powerheads connected to Hydor Smart Wave Controller (might be a bit excessive?)
  • Inkbird Digital Temp Controller
    • Cobalt 100w Heater
    • 2 USB Fans (One is blowing air in, one pulling air out) mounted on wall behind tank inline with cord openings to help with cooling
  • XP Aqua Duetto ATO
  • Intank Baskets (Media & Fuge)
  • IM Chaetomaxx Fuge Light (mounted on back even with Fuge Chamber)
  • Coralife Biocube Protein Skimmer V2 (Installed this today, will see how it goes)
  • Smart Wifi Power Strip - makes for easy control of powerheads and return pump during feeding & maintenance as well as setting a schedule for the fuge light (plus who doesn't love being able to yell tank commands/routines at alexa?!)
  • Stock Return Pump

The Layout:

Chamber 1

  • Heater
  • Protein Skimmer
Chamber 2
  • Media Rack (bonded poly filter floss > purigen > chemipure elite)
  • Fuge Rack with Chaeto (I took the sides of the stock rack and they slide into place perfectly to lock in the chaeto)
Chamber 3
  • ATO Sensor & return
  • Thermometer
  • Return Pump

The Livestock
  • Yellow Watchmen Goby & Pistol Shrimp (bonded pair)
  • Rose Bubble Tip
  • Cleaner Shrimp
  • CUC
  • planning to add 2 black ocellaris once the RBTA settles in
Current Coral
  • Utter Chaos Zoas
  • LA Lakers Zoas
  • Green stem blue tip frogspawn
  • Acan (no idea what kind, maybe you all can help me ID?)
 
Aquashella

jackalexander

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Very nice gear! Steve’s LED’s are much better than the stock biocube LED’s! I’m running an AI Prime 16HD, I would toss the biocube protein skimmer and get something else. It barely works and doesn’t skim very much.. If you ever upgrade your powerheads, go for the AI nero 3 or 5. Fantastic control and makes for really peaceful water movement! Happy reefing and welcome to R2R!
4D8A3837-BAA0-497D-B8CD-1BEB3F195AB2.jpeg
I personally don’t skim at all, just have a small fuge and everything is happy and healthy!
 
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Imjustabill

Imjustabill

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Very nice gear! Steve’s LED’s are much better than the stock biocube LED’s! I’m running an AI Prime 16HD, I would toss the biocube protein skimmer and get something else. It barely works and doesn’t skim very much.. If you ever upgrade your powerheads, go for the AI nero 3 or 5. Fantastic control and makes for really peaceful water movement! Happy reefing and welcome to R2R!
4D8A3837-BAA0-497D-B8CD-1BEB3F195AB2.jpeg
I personally don’t skim at all, just have a small fuge and everything is happy and healthy!
Thanks for the tips! I was looking into splurging and getting a pair of MP10s but I think have enough bells and whistles for now. If I have any issues with the flow being too agressive I might just pull the trigger on those or the neros.

I have read a lot of mixed reviews on the biocube protein skimmer and wanted to see for myself. I like redundancy in as much as possible and wanted to find a skimmer to fit in chamber 1 so I rolled the dice on it. Will post my feedback as time goes.
 

jackalexander

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Thanks for the tips! I was looking into splurging and getting a pair of MP10s but I think have enough bells and whistles for now. If I have any issues with the flow being too agressive I might just pull the trigger on those or the neros.

I have read a lot of mixed reviews on the biocube protein skimmer and wanted to see for myself. I like redundancy in as much as possible and wanted to find a skimmer to fit in chamber 1 so I rolled the dice on it. Will post my feedback as time goes.
MP10s are another fantastic choice :cool:
 
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Imjustabill

Imjustabill

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How do you like those Intank baskets? I was taking a look at getting them, but they seem pretty pricy. Are they worth it in your opinion?
Personally I'm a big fan of them. They give you a great way to force your water through your filtration.

Think of it this way. For the 100-125 bucks you'll end up spending on both intank racks and what you'll need to fill them up, you're essentially getting a canister filter and refugium all fitting into chamber 2.

In the grand scheme of things, thats pretty cheap for what you're getting.

I'd also say search on here or fb marketplace before buying new ones.

Hope this helps!
 
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Imjustabill

Imjustabill

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I purchased the Coralife skimmer when I got my BC32 but it's never been run because of the feedback I've seen here. I should probably just plug it in and see how it goes.
Are you running another skimmer?

My coralife skimmer has been up and running for about 2 and a half weeks, it doesn't pull out the darkest skim, but it does pull some out.

I'd say if you have the room for it and aren't running a different one. It can't hurt.
 

KeMiKiLL

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Are you running another skimmer?

My coralife skimmer has been up and running for about 2 and a half weeks, it doesn't pull out the darkest skim, but it does pull some out.

I'd say if you have the room for it and aren't running a different one. It can't hurt.
I'm not running one at all right now. I'm thinking I'll set this one up later today and give it a go.
 

Tankkeepers

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Man I laugh ever time I see this huge list of expensive equipment for a nano tank a water change alone is more then enough

I run cemipure blue changed monthly a filter pad a 400 gph return pump stock lighting and a 100 w heater that's it and check out my tank everything except the new sps (montipora 4 types)has been and is growing fast sps is a week old so to soon to really tell other then it's happy open gaining color and eatting
 
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Imjustabill

Imjustabill

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Man I laugh ever time I see this huge list of expensive equipment for a nano tank a water change alone is more then enough

I run cemipure blue changed monthly a filter pad a 400 gph return pump stock lighting and a 100 w heater that's it and check out my tank everything except the new sps (montipora 4 types)has been and is growing fast sps is a week old so to soon to really tell other then it's happy open gaining color and eatting
1. I still do weekly water changes. Nothing is going to replace the need for that. Especially this early on in the game.

2. I wouldn't say I have a huge list of expensive equipment. Nothing I have in there was over 100 bucks outside of the upgraded lights (which I got second hand for much less than msrp). Most of it was under 50 infact. But thanks for your input!
 

Tankkeepers

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I'm not really saying it's that expensive it's just alot of extra crap to take care of you don't need for a nano and your adding more fail points on something that's easily done with a water change alone you only need all the extra stuff if your not doing water changes
 
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Tankkeepers

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I honestly think most people fail and give up in this Hobbie cuz everyone tells them they need all this extra stuff to start and u don't then u end up with problem after problem and no clue why eventually give up and sell everything is sad cuz it's not really that hard heck I have never ever ever ever ever (only sent it away for testing 3 time during the bryopsis problem to see if I could see why it was happening testing did not help as water is perfect)done a water test on this tank no need as I can tell what's going on (10 year exp so don't try this) I'm just making the point of get the tank rock sand a few fishys and what not that go well in a nano some soft coral and see how it goes don't try LPS or sps or any of the harder softy as you will end up killing them all more then likly good luck hope it all goes well and I hope you don't give up a year from now cuz it's just to much to take care of as the way your doing it it's going to consume most of your time
 

Tankkeepers

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I will say this your is not nearly as bad with extra unneeded stuff as some others iv seen and watch fail give up and sell off everything never to return good luck I really do hope it goes well also those 2 WaveMaker are going to kill alot of stuff shrimp fish etc such a small tank they can't get way and get sucked into it had this exact problem dumped the wave maker upgraded return pump and all is good I have 0 dead spots everything that try to settle ends up in a whirl pool in the middle of the tank and I stuck it out rockwork designed to achieve this
 
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Imjustabill

Imjustabill

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I will say this your is not nearly as bad with extra unneeded stuff as some others iv seen and watch fail give up and sell off everything never to return good luck I really do hope it goes well also those 2 WaveMaker are going to kill alot of stuff shrimp fish etc such a small tank they can't get way and get sucked into it had this exact problem dumped the wave maker upgraded return pump and all is good I have 0 dead spots everything that try to settle ends up in a whirl pool in the middle of the tank and I stuck it out rockwork designed to achieve this

I totally get that. and truly appreciate the constructive criticism. I had my heart set on setting up a refugium from day 1 so that kinda led me down the path of kitting out the 2nd chamber with the 2 intank media racks.

While I was kicking myself for not checking fb marketplace for the tank in the first place I found the coralife skimmer and Steve's LED for next to nothing about 2 miles from my place so I figured why not?

I was definitely considering cutting back on the wavemakers to just one as I am going to be focusing mostly on softies and a few lps so there is not really a need for having a super heavy flow at the top of my tank (granted I use one of them to run behind my rockwork where I cant get with a cleaner). Glad that those thoughts werent too far off.

What are your thoughts on running with a temp controller? I have noticed that I had better luck holding a temp by relying on just the heaters sensor vs. routing it through the controller that turns it on and off at its discretion? I did make the change in my tank of swapping the controller's thermometer to chamber 1 and moving the heater to chamber 3 since I wanted to monitor the temp of the water coming in vs. the water leaving the aio sump.

I currently have a few different zoas, a frogspawn (started with 2 heads, noticed a 3rd mouth on the larger head a few days ago!), a 1 head hammer, a green toadstool, 2 different acan lords and a rhodactis mushroom. Everything seems to be growing out great thus far. Especially my zoas and acans. I did have a little scare with the frog when I noticed a vermetid snail mounted itself right between the 2 heads which made for a fun time snipping him off, but other than
that, everything has been going off without a hitch. I was considering dabbling into a super hardy sps for the top of my tank but am thinking that might be a bit overzealous when the tanks only been up a few months.

gAain, thanks for the feedback, looking forward to my lense filter coming in so I can show you my setup
 

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