Build thread - converting 75 gallons fresh to salty

Idech

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That’s it, I’m hooked ! I set up my Fluval Evo 13.5 last February and it’s going well so I want bigger.

I’ve looked at many possible options but I’ve decided to convert my 75 gallons African cichlids tank to a reef tank. This tank was bought less than a year ago and it would have felt like throwing money out the window to get rid of it. It’s only con, no possibility of having a sump because there is no room in the cabinet.

After doing much research, I found a trio made by Tunze that is perfect for sumpless reef water tanks. It’s very popular in Europe, where they don’t use sumps as much. This pack, called Reefpack 500, is impossible to buy in Canada, so I’m buying all components separately.

What I have and will reuse :
- 75 gallons tank
- cabinet
- 2 x 200 watts Eheim heaters
- Inkbird temp controller
- 75 lbs of Florida rocks (I will clean it outside and dry it in the sun)
- 80 lbs of aragonite sand (I will do a very thorough cleaning and drying in the sun for many days as well)
- AI Nero 3
- AI Prime 16 HD
- About 15 lbs of rocks that are starting to grow coralline algae in my EVO
- Ground probe
- GFCI outlet
- Koralia 3rd gen 2450 gph powerhead (I might not use it)

For testing, I have so far :
- API master test kit (just for ball park)
- Salifert Phosphate test
- Hanna High range nitrate checker
- Hydrometer

What I need to buy :
- Another AI Prime 16 HD and support
- AI Nero 5
- The Tunze trio, consisting of :

Comline multifilter 3168 (ordered from Ebay, there are none in Canada)
Comline skimmer 9012 with controller
Osmolator 3155
And I also need a reservoir with a volume of 27 liters (7.1 USgal.) to hold the refill water.

All of this will cost me just a little under 2 000$ CAD. It seems like a lot for a conversion but I’m hard set on getting AI and Tunze products, which cost more but seem of greater quality and offer total control via user friendly apps (for AI).

My next steps :
- Rehoming the fish
- Emptying and cleaning the tank
- Refilling the tank with RO/Di and salt mix and keeping it moving
- Cleaning and drying the rocks and sand (will take at least a week)
- Building the aquascape
- Cycling with temporary filter until I get Comline 3168
- Installing equipment

Meanwhile, I’m also going to do research on what fish and cuc I want.

I can’t wait to start ! The rehoming should take place next week, so it will all start right after.
 
Reef Chasers Aquaculture
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Idech

Idech

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@lapin « Le temps est un grand maître, dit-on, le malheur est qu'il tue ses élèves. ». Love it ! I’d never heard it before.

I’m looking at buying E-Marco 400 Aquascaping kit. I just hope I have enough strenght to break the rocks. I might have to enroll a friend to help in that department, lol !

I almost bought a second AI Prime 16 HD with the rigid mount. But I did my WC on my Mbuna tank today and I feel bad for having to rehome them…

I can’t back down now, I’ve got the filter coming from Germany. I’m just waiting until it passes…
 
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Idech

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Hmm, that’s weird, I thought I updated this thread…

Pretty much everything has been ordered from a few different places :

The « detached » Reef pack 500 :
  • Tunze Comline 9012 w controller
  • Tunze 3155 osmolator
  • Tunze multifilter 3168

  • Nero 5 wavemaker
  • Rigid mounting arm forPrime
  • Ai Prime 16 HD
  • E-Marco 400 Aquascaping kit (mortar)
I still have to buy sand as I’ve tested mine and after rinsing thoroughly, it has 0.5 ppm nitrates.

I’ve decided to buy Special grade aragonite again as it looks like the best for what I need.

I am also testing the rocks to see if they will leach phosphates. If they do, I’ll need rocks as well. I have a separate thread about that.
 

revhtree

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Congrats on the new tank!
 
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Idech

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I bought the sand online and will go pick it up in a few days. I originally wanted Caribsea special grade Aragonite reef sand but there was only 1 x 40 lbs bag and I needed 2.

The owner of the store told me about Caribsea Arag alive special grade reef sand, which is the same grain size and even better, because it doesn’t need to be rinsed. It supposedly has bacteria in it but I’m a little sceptical about how efficient this is. We’ll see.

So I ordered 4 x 20 lbs. I’m pretty happy about not having to spend a whole hour rinsing sand ! :)
 
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Idech

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I’ve picked up the sand and received the E-Marco 400. Funny how small the container is in real life. If I had known, I wouldn’t have paid 90$ for that…

My rocks have been bleached. They came out beautiful and white, just as they were when I bought them. All the diatoms and green algae disappeared, without having to scrub them. I’ve rinsed them, let them air dry half a day and put them in a big bin with freshwater and prime. I’ve tested for chlorine and there is none. I’ve changed the water just in case, and will be doing it a second time in a few weeks.

The FX4 has been removed from the tank, as well as the Fluval freshwater light and other pieces of equipment, to make rock scaping easier.

I still have to remove the old sand and clean the tank (it’s not dirty but still), then I’ll refill with tap water until my rock scape is done and ready to go in. I think I’ll use my egg crate again, but I’m not sure yet.

BUT…. the whole project is on hold for now. My parents are both ill and having a hard time so I have to go to their place to help until things get better.

I have no idea when I will be able to go back to it.

To be followed.
 

Do you house a "Reef Safe" Angelfish in your reef tank?

  • YES and it's going good

    Votes: 185 40.6%
  • YES but it's not working out

    Votes: 13 2.9%
  • NO I have tried it in the past and it didn't work out

    Votes: 41 9.0%
  • NO I haven't tried yet

    Votes: 202 44.3%
  • Other (please explain)

    Votes: 15 3.3%
Santa Monica Filtration
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