Budget 10 gallon build

Atkins

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This was my first attempt at a saltwater tank, it's a standard aqueon 10 gallon tank from Petco. I started the build in April of 2021.

Equipment: seachem tidal 55 filled with a polishing pad, matrix and carbon.
NICREW marine led strip light.
Ai Nero 3.
Auto Aqua ATO.
Inkbird with 50watt heater, and 2 fans for summer heat.
DIY control board with switch box.

Sorry the photos didn't post in chronological order

This tank build is still an ongoing process I built my first control board a few months ago for my switch box and equipment which isn't much, but adding a switch box has been the best thing I did since adding the ATO.

Fish and coral have been doing good, have more luck with coral then fish. I've had some fish that didn't make it but the fish I do have are doing awesome. I have a captive bred clownfish, captive bred yellow watchmen goby, and a wild tail spot blenny. My watchmen is paired with a candy stripe pistol shrimp, they have been together since the start

Corals in the beginning we're easy going softies, Kenya tree, GSP, Anthelia, xeania, leathers. Lately I've been adding more LPS like candy canes, goniastria, alviopora, hammer and Duncan and even some SPS like montipora and birdsnest.





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Atkins

Atkins

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These are some new frags I picked up this month, riccordia Florida
Seriatopora Sp.
Montipora Sp.
Duncanopsammia
Purple Caulastraea
Euphyllia ancora
 

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Atkins

Atkins

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Nice tank! I really dig the control board! This build is very similar to my 10 gallon bedroom budget build that I'm in the process of revamping. Looking forward to following along!
Thanks! The control board was a lot of fun to make!
 
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Jan, 28-2023 update

IMG_20230128_154958426.jpg

As my larger waterbox established I added all the lps and Zoas from. Also the SPS died off pretty quickly, which I think lack of nutrients might be part of it.

As of right now alk is 9.1 Calcium and magnesium unknown cuz I got lazy. Nitrates (Hanna HR) 0.0 phosphates (Hanna LR) 0.00

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All the fish and inverts doing well. You might notice my tailspot blenny is missing, he made the move to waterbox too.

I have been dosing brightwel neo nitro and neo phos to try and bring up the nutrient levels, I believe my soft corals are consuming it, feeding red sea AB+, cultured phyto, flake and frozen sometimes, also TDO Xtra small and hikari seaweed extreme. Kinda just randomly and not all the time.



All in all it's a very simple system, almost 2 years old, it's not perfect, some bubble agae, aptasia and weird films the look to be dinos or cyano. But not taking over.

My goals this year include raising nutrients, and keeping to soft corals in this tank, more leathers, mushrooms and more inverts.

Any suggestions to my low nutrients?
 

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I would suggest dosing for raising your low nutrients, but I see you're already doing that. I'm having the same issue in my 10 gallon build as well. I've been alternating dosing Brightwell NeoNitro and NeoPhos as they both keep bottoming out. I guess another suggestion for raising nutrients would be to add another fish, but that's tough with a small tank like this one. You definitely don't want to go overboard with stocking it. Overall though the tank looks good! I like the soft coral vibe. What's the specimin cup in the top right of the tank for?
 
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I would suggest dosing for raising your low nutrients, but I see you're already doing that. I'm having the same issue in my 10 gallon build as well. I've been alternating dosing Brightwell NeoNitro and NeoPhos as they both keep bottoming out. I guess another suggestion for raising nutrients would be to add another fish, but that's tough with a small tank like this one. You definitely don't want to go overboard with stocking it. Overall though the tank looks good! I like the soft coral vibe. What's the specimin cup in the top right of the tank for?
Thank you! I have been thinking of adding another fish soon, but also might have to put on a doser because your right, it's difficult to keep most fish happy in a tank this small.

Oh and the coral cup in the corner is a DIY snail guard for the ATO sensor lol. Just a small cut out for the cord and drilled some holes around it for flow. The magnet keeps it's in place, I had problems with snails activating the sensor and almost flooding the tank.
 
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