Brad’s 180g mixed reef build

Brad_95

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Hey everyone, I originally had a build thread post over in the large build section, but I decided I’d start over to show off some progress as this is going to be a very long, ongoing process.

To start, I currently have a Marineland 75g tank and stand combo that I drilled myself and plumbed with an eschopps overflow and a 20L triton sump.

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It is lightly stocked with a pair of clowns, to mini tang, one spot foxface and a feisty royal gramma. As well as a mixed bag of corals ranging from a blue cespitularia colony (slowly invading the entire tank) all the way to a 9”x7” red monti cap. There’s some basics corals thrown into the mix as well that I haven’t taken photos of yet.

Now, back to what everyone wants to see, I picked up a great 180g tank and stand from a friend of mine that hasn’t used it in a while. I took the tank home and decided to reseal all of the inner seals since they were showing some age but the structural seals are in perfect condition. The stand is a different story, I couldn’t have cared less for it as it was made of mdf material and from my experience with it, for the sake of preserving my language, is a heaping load of garbage.

With that being said, I decided to take on the task of building my own stand. The CEO of the house signed off to allowing me to do whatever I want with it, so I’m going “full send” with it.
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The main bracing at the top and bottom are 2x6 while the rest is all 2x4 doubled up and even tripled in some areas.

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The stand is 73”x25”x40” it is built at a bit above bar height as it is situated in our basement where there is a home theater. With my love of farms since I grew up around them and even working on one for a time, I have designed it with a farmhouse feel and rustic look to it. I am wrapping it in poplar wood and finishing it with 3D and 2D finishing nails. I have buil in two slots on the top for built in shelving that is right at bar height in order to have stools that sit there as well as being handy for when working on the tank.

Much more is yet to come. Stay tuned!
 
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Brad_95

Brad_95

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HEY..i expected to see a new tank ;) :D75 looks great,nice work on the stand!
sticking around to see a un cracked tank :cool:
Fingers crossed this time, I’m not letting go of this bad boy that easily! If anything does happen I’m just replacing the panel and sealing it myself lol
 
Top Shelf Aquatics
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Brad_95

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top paneling has been put on. Just finished cutting the 1x3s to length for the second door. I also finally decided on what to use for the shelving. It’s a generic hardwood cut that is 1x18x48” I’m going to cut it to size for the shelves. I used soft close 14” shelving brackets so I will definitely have plenty of space for it. Hoping to get the second door on tonight.
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I’ve decided on what to do with the right side of the stand, since I’ve always wanted a dedicated area for all of my controllers, I’m going to construct another door for that side, and I’m going to place a piece of plywood on the corner 2x4 joints to create a nice spot to hang them and then drill holes for all of the cabling.
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Orphek OR3 reef aquarium LED lighting
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Brad_95

Brad_95

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A little update, I’ve been doing some research into a new lighting system for this tank, as my current lights alone won’t nearly be enough. I’m looking into doing
two Aquatic Life T5/LED 36” hybrids, but I’m still debating which LED’s to go with.

The other idea is running two Kessil AP700 with a couple of orphek OR3 bars to supplement.

Any ideas or recommendations? FYI I’m a little tight on budget as I’m trying to save up for a wedding at the same time.
 
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Eagle_Steve

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@Eagle_Steve any lighting thoughts ,it's a 180 :cool:
My 180 has an aquatic life 61” hybrid. No shadowing with the T5s. I am currently running 6x kessil a360we. It was 3, but a tank buy out got me 3 more for a good deal. I still let the t5s do most of the driving though. Kessils are for dawn/dusk and have a 4 hour peak mid day.

Here is with the fixture and 3x a360. Grows everything. Not quite as fast as my halide 180, but close.

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Brad_95

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My 180 has an aquatic life 61” hybrid. No shadowing with the T5s. I am currently running 6x kessil a360we. It was 3, but a tank buy out got me 3 more for a good deal. I still let the t5s do most of the driving though. Kessils are for dawn/dusk and have a 4 hour peak mid day.

Here is with the fixture and 3x a360. Grows everything. Not quite as fast as my halide 180, but close.

92105EA6-6BC9-4B88-ADDF-9D4B7E7459F2.jpeg
With the fixture being 61” do you get any shadowing on the edges of the tank? Or does the kessils help with that?
 

Eagle_Steve

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With the fixture being 61” do you get any shadowing on the edges of the tank? Or does the kessils help with that?
With my scape and corner overflows, no. T5s cover it all well. Kessils were dead center of each of the 3 sections when I only had 3. For example, the Duncan on the lower left tripled in size and had no shading.

Excuse the mess. Putting new sump in this weekend. Also, the additional 3 kessils only just got fired up yesterday due to bracket shipping delays.

This is T5 only.

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Brad_95

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With my scape and corner overflows, no. T5s cover it all well. Kessils were dead center of each of the 3 sections when I only had 3. For example, the Duncan on the lower left tripled in size and had no shading.

Excuse the mess. Putting new sump in this weekend. Also, the additional 3 kessils only just got fired up yesterday due to bracket shipping delays.

This is T5 only.

339CA6EA-8E60-44B5-B6A7-046EF33891AE.jpeg
Awesome, thanks. Doing a 61 rather than two 36 would definitely cut down on costs as well. How do you like the a360?
 

Eagle_Steve

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Awesome, thanks. Doing a 61 rather than two 36 would definitely cut down on costs as well. How do you like the a360?
I am a halide/T5 guy through and through. I do like the kessils shimmer though. It is the only led I can get close to the halide look. Tried it with all other major names out there and just couldn’t get the look, at least to my eyes.
 
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