Dodgersfan's 90 Gallon build thread

Discussion in 'Member Tanks' started by Dodgersfan, Oct 7, 2017.

  1. Dodgersfan

    Dodgersfan Active Member Build Thread Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    Hi Everyone! I've been keeping tanks for about 15 years now, mostly freshwater, but some FOWLR, we've been bouncing back and forth between coasts for a few years, and the time hasn't been right to make a big investment, so it's been a couple of years since I've had a tank up and running. We've finally settled down for the foreseeable future, so its time to set up a new tank! i chose a 90 gallon because i wanted something of substantial size that gave me a lot of options, but wasn't a monster, its also going in my living room, which is over basement, and 1000-ish pounds was about the most i was comfortable with. For livestock i will be focusing mainly on Wrasses, coral wist the thank will be LPS dominated.

    This may be a slower build thread as we had a minor flood a few weeks ago (nothing tank related) and are in the process of replacing the floors on the main level, which put me about a month behind where i wanted to be with the tank, but at least its giving me more time to research and plan...

    I'll start with the stand, I had this custom made by my LFS, it has a side door for controller & releated equipment, no center brace for easier access to equipment under the stand, & a hood that is hinged for cleaning & has smaller feeding doors.

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  2. Big G

    Big G Valuable Member R2R Supporter Reef Squad R2R Excellence Award Build Thread Contributor

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    Very nice looking stand. Great start! I've got a few month old 90 going myself. Enjoy!
     
  3. Dodgersfan

    Dodgersfan Active Member Build Thread Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    Base rock has arrived! Since I've got time waiting for these floors to be redone(and I'm too cheap to spend $500-$600+ on live rock) I ordered everything from BRS (I'm planning on posting individual reviews on them as soon as I'm past the 30 day mark, largely I'm very happy, though my branching rock broke in shipping, because of poor packaging.)

    I ordered 50 pounds of generic Fiji, 20 lbs of complex multi branch, and 15 pounds of tonga shelf.

    Here's the branch rock as it came:
    IMG_0765.JPG

    Nothing a little epoxy (or a lot) won't fix:

    IMG_0767.JPG


    And the tonga shelf:

    IMG_0770.JPG

    I'm really happy with the 3 pieces I got, I kinda wish I had ordered 5-10 more pounds and got 1 or 2 more...

    I think the branching rock is more dense than the shelf rock, I got more poundage of branch, but looking at them side by side the shelf rock looks almost the same size wise.

    Lastly the 50 lbs of generic Fiji:
    IMG_0772.JPG


    I got 8 good pieces of various sizes, and several rectangular/oblong pieces that should work really well for my tank foot print (48"x18")
     
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  4. Dodgersfan

    Dodgersfan Active Member Build Thread Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    Aquascaping time!

    I'm pulling my inspiration heavily from this thread: https://www.reef2reef.com/threads/tips-and-tricks-on-creating-amazing-aquascapes.97209/

    I think I'm going to try a few different arrangements and do a poll to see what folks think.

    The tank is an AGA 90 gallon with the offset rear center overflow, the idea is to hide the overflow behind the left structure and have the channel between structures just passed that. Overall tank dimentions are 18" deep x 24" tall x 48" wide.

    Here's my first try, we'll call this option "A" the overall height of the tops of the structures are between 14-16" (without sand). Total tank height is 24" it may not be tall enough, I think I may need a couple more rocks on the right structure.maybe a few more smaller shelf pieces...

    (Ignore the random garage stuff I'm using as supports)

    From the front (sitting height):
    IMG_0773.JPG


    From the front (standing height):
    IMG_0775.JPG
    Top down:

    IMG_0774.JPG

    Main angle it will be viewed from in the living room:
    IMG_0778.JPG

    Lower view of the same angle, from sitting in the living room:
    IMG_0779.JPG

    Closeup on the left hand structure:
    IMG_0783.JPG

    Closeup of the right hand structure: IMG_0784.JPG
     
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  5. Mini Coop

    Mini Coop Well-Known Member Build Thread Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    Looks like a great start! I am actually getting ready to order my rock and am not sure what to get! This was helpful!
    I like the 2 islands, and how you used one of the branches basically upside down for the left side - that looks cool!
    Follow my build thread if you would like! I will be getting aquascape advice too!
    https://www.reef2reef.com/threads/new-180-build-mini-coops-dream-tank.327141/
     
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  6. ReefJCB

    ReefJCB Active Member Build Thread Contributor

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    Love the stand, nice clean look. Sorry to hear about the flood.
     
  7. leahfiish

    leahfiish Valuable Member R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Build Thread Contributor

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    I really like that aquascape, I have a 90g too and I went with a 2 island look as well. Also I'm doing lots of wrasses and LPS too, so I'll be following along.
     
  8. Dodgersfan

    Dodgersfan Active Member Build Thread Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    I'll check the it your thread, I wished I could do something the size of a 180, but our living room is over basement and I don't trust 24" OC composite joists with the weight of a Mini Cooper....

    I learned a few things about rock from my experience, the best thing about BRS is they take requests, I gave them descriptions of the rock I was looking for and they even called me and asked me some questions about what I was looking for. I would say get a few pounds more than you think you need and ask them for that last few pounds in smaller pieces than the rest. Also with the rewards points they give and free shipping on everything right now, you can order the bulk of your rock, look at it, decide what else you might need and then order that and use the points from the first order. I did that today & combined it as paid about $25 for 20 more pounds of rock. (ps theyre having a flash sale today, 10% off store wide)
     
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  9. Dodgersfan

    Dodgersfan Active Member Build Thread Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    Cool, it'll be interesting to see what we do similar and differently and how it turns out, I'm sure we'll be able to help each other a bunch along the way, Do you have a build thread going?
     
    Last edited: Oct 9, 2017
  10. leahfiish

    leahfiish Valuable Member R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Build Thread Contributor

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  11. Dodgersfan

    Dodgersfan Active Member Build Thread Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    Well it doesn't look like I can edit the thread to add a poll so we'll just have to do it the old fashioned way, comment and let me know which scape you like more!

    I rearranged the rock today, this structure is a little taller than the last, peaks are between 16" & 18" we'll call this "Option B."

    Front from standing:
    IMG_0804.JPG

    Front from sitting:
    IMG_0806.JPG

    Top down:
    IMG_0805.JPG

    Main viewing angle from living room:
    IMG_0808.JPG

    Closeup on left structure:
    IMG_0823.JPG

    Closeup on right structure:
    IMG_0817.JPG



    So let's hear it, which do you like better? Option A? Option B? Or option C, something different (let me know what you think I should change if you vote for option C)

    Thanks everyone!
     
  12. Dodgersfan

    Dodgersfan Active Member Build Thread Contributor Partner Member 2018

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  13. Mini Coop

    Mini Coop Well-Known Member Build Thread Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    I wish I would have waited until today to order!!!! :(
    I spent around $700 yesterday!

    Ours is over basement too! We are having the floor reinforced! 2x4 walls with 3 beams across. This will also frame in the new fish room! :)
     
  14. leahfiish

    leahfiish Valuable Member R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Build Thread Contributor

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    It took quite a while to break in but seems good now. Tbh I don't pay a lot of attention to it though and only clean it once a week.
     
  15. Big G

    Big G Valuable Member R2R Supporter Reef Squad R2R Excellence Award Build Thread Contributor

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    Very creative. Nice!
     
  16. Dodgersfan

    Dodgersfan Active Member Build Thread Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    Got that extra rock I ordered, kinda disappointed actually... only 2 out of the 4 shelf pieces are usable, as for the bulk Fiji, I asked for a mix of baseball and softball sized pieces and instead got 2 footballs and a tiny piece that may or may not have broken off of one of the footballs. Not sure if I'll use these extra pieces, but at least I've got a few more options now. I do like the look of the curved Fiji piece and the little piece will make a good island, I'll probably take a chisel to the other piece to get the smaller pieces I was looking for...

    IMG_0829.JPG IMG_0830.JPG
     
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  17. Dodgersfan

    Dodgersfan Active Member Build Thread Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    IMG_0831.JPG Rock is in the tub curing. I rinsed it off with a garden hose on the highest pressure setting (but by no means a pressure wash). I got a lot of the large dead items off of it, but after soaking overnight there was apparently a lot I missed, the whole garage stinks today and the water almost has a yellow tint to it. Tested it and amonia is a darker color than the darkest color on the Red Sea test, (the darkest color is green, and the test water was so green it had a blue tint to it) safe to say it's more than a little over 2. Nitrate is at 2, and nitrite is somewhere in between .25 and .50. I added some dr. Tims to seed some nitrifying bacteria, and am planning on leaving it alone until next weekend. With as dirty as the water looks should I consider a 100% water change sometime this week? Do I need to do any water changes during curing or just leave it alone and let the bacteria do its thing?
     
  18. Dodgersfan

    Dodgersfan Active Member Build Thread Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    Welp.... this build thread just got a whole lot slower... Daddy went and raided the Fish Tank fund...

    wstix.jpg


    I had planned on getting just a standard Aquaeon tank and was rushing to try and get the tank presentable before we have a bunch of family over for xmas, but I've been eyeballing some custom builders for tanks low iron glass and ghost overflows that are only a couple hundred more than the basic tank, so i think I'm gonna slow this down and look into ordering a custom tank around the first of the year, on the plus side it'll give that dead rock sitting in the Rubbermaid in the garage plenty of time to cure...

    WORLD SERIES BABY!!!!!!!!!!!
     
  19. Dodgersfan

    Dodgersfan Active Member Build Thread Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    So after thinking about it this week, I decided the first cleaning I did of the rocks (really just a rinse with medium pressure water) wasn't enough, there was lots of dead black things still on the rocks. I did another water test, ammonia was even farther off of the charts than the first time. The water was blue-green the first time, this time it was full blue and very dark. Oddly nitrate and nitrite were at 0. I wasn't expecting that after having detectable amounts of both on the first test. So I decided to do a 100% water change, I figured the week of soaking would've loosened up a lot of what stayed stuck on in the first rinse, and it'd be a good chance to scrub up the rocks better.

    I saw a lot of interesting stuff on the rocks that I didn't notice the first time, I pulled out some huge sponges from deep holes in the rocks, some of them were so big I've now got holes on separate sides of the rock that are actually connected to make a little *** through. There was also this perfectly cylindrical hole bored in one of the rocks that was several inches deep, it makes me wonder what made it...

    IMG_0844.JPG IMG_0845.JPG
    IMG_0847.JPG

    Also one of the rocks had some green and white encrusting stuff on it that I noticed when it was dry, however it's a lot more visable when wet:

    IMG_0850.JPG

    I thought this was new at first, but all the pictures I've been taking have come in handy, I was able to look back and see it on the pre-water pictures.

    I also found something that wasn't on the rocks originally. There's some red encrusting looking stuff on several pieces that came from different shipments, I'm pretty sure this isn't something like the green and white stuff, it's on about 4-5 different pieces from 3 different shipments, I also looked back at pre-water photos of those pieces and it wasn't there. Could some sort of coraline algae have been dormant on the rocks through the months they've been dry? (I'm assuming they've been dry for months)

    IMG_0843.JPG

    Also found a few more interesting things that I hadn't noticed before, it could be that they were shriveled up and they've now swelled up to be more visible after soaking. Was the translucent one aptasia?
    IMG_0841.JPG
    IMG_0842.JPG IMG_0849.JPG

    Anyway, back to the water parameters. We had a cold snap this week, and I think it might've messed with the dr tims I dosed the water with. It stayed above 70 in the garage, but the water felt like it was in the mid to low 60s when I touched it. So I tossed a spare 50 watt heater in, and re-dosed dr tims. 24 hours later retested the water and ammonia came in right at 2, notrate is back up to 2 and nitrite is 0.05.

    For the next 6 weeks I'm just going to let it sit and test it weekly.
     
  20. Dodgersfan

    Dodgersfan Active Member Build Thread Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    Update time! Last weekend was 3 weeks into the curing process, reading 0.1 ammonia, 0.75 Nitrites and Nitrates are off the chart (my test ends at 50, but the test water is several shades darker). I had 2 football sized rocks that I didn’t put in the bin with the rest because they wouldn’t fit. I took a chisel to them and broke them up into 3 roughly softball sized pieces each and threw them in with the rock. I was worried this would restart the cycle, so I tested again the day after and 6 days later. 1 day later there was no change in parameters, the day 6 test (today) ammonia was at zero and nitrates are even more off the chart than they were last week, and nitrites are now off the chart as well. It looks like the bacteria from the dr. Tims I added was able to handle whatever ammonia was produced by the added rocks.


    In other news I’ve decided against buying an off the shelf tank, I emailed 10 builders earlier in the week, 6 have responded so far, of those 3 are really high, 1 is medium and I’ve got two finalists that I’m deciding between (SCA and Glass Cages) the SCA would be their standard off the shelf with a big internal overflow. The glass cages would be drilled for a reef savvy ghost. SCA is 10-12 weeks for a custom tank, which is longer than I want to wait. Reef Savvy is one of the 4 I haven’t heard back from ☹️ Which bums me out, I was really hoping to get one of their tanks, but if they’re too busy to reply to an email In a weeks time It’s probably going to take longer for them to build the tank than I want to wait...


    It’s also time to start thinking about finalizing tank placement there’s a chair in the living room on the same wall the tank is going, I need to decide which side to put the tank on. I’m curious what everyone thinks is the better, both have their pros and cons....

    Option 1 is more visible from the rest of the house, but the chair has to be turned in a way where you can’t watch tv if you’re sitting in it, and the tank is in the walkway which might spook the fish more.
    E0FE012F-35C5-457A-9378-3607316394A0.jpeg

    Option 2 makes the chair about the best place to be for watching tank and TV, but it makes the walkway pretty narrow and the tank isn’t very visible from anywhere except the chair.

    1C70855C-EE7B-4D35-970F-A2F748BB1ED7.jpeg
     
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