Finally showcasing my SPS monster... 1300 gallon display... 2000 gallon system... and many past displays

JCOLE

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Awesome John!! I have followed along on the other forums for a long time. Glad you have a thread here now as well. Beautiful setup and i will be following along for the ride.

I have a frag of your Calicali stag that is positioned in the center to be a showpiece. It is started to take off and I can tell it is going to be a stunner!!

Thank you for what you do for this hobby!
Josh
 
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mtfish

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THANK YOU R2R community!:) What a pleasant surprise! While I signed up here in '06 I feel like I just moved into the neighborhood... and you guys all made me pies. :D


Love the GIF! I'm a huge Griswold fan... specifically Clark, as I act just like him. I force fun on our family vacations! :D I have plans to visit all 50 states with the wife and kids... this year was supposed to include New Mexico for Spring Break, then Idaho, Wyoming and Montana in the summer (inlcuding Yellowstone and Glacier)... but that was killed by COVID... I have the same trips planned for next year... and if we can't go I'll be so upset I'll punch the Marty Moose and have to go to the sporting goods store (a reference to the OG National Lampoons Vacation). Anyway, we're at 33 states we've all hit together as a group of four... soon to be 37 hopefully!
Hey John, Texas is a big state. Kind of hard to miss it! May I suggest Big Bend National Park. I am always looking for your updates, either here or back at Reef Central.
 
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JumboShrimp

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You are an animal, and that main tank is a beast! I especially loved the photo of your movie theater with the tank viewable in the background. Just when I thought I had hit every twist and turn imaginable-- 'Clam sperm and eggs.' ;) Congratulations on fulfilling your life's dream.
 

dodgerblew

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Hi John,

Great for this forum to have your knowledge and contributions on display. R2R is a great forum and having you being active on it only makes it that much better! You’re the cream of the crop. Welcome in
 

Jagg

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I’m not to proud to admit reading this thread makes me wet with excitement and envy in equal measure. Applaud your planning. My set up has been in my head for an age but i didn’t plan it like you have... very much an afterthought as I would never have got it past the jailer’s beady eye. Even this morning I got daggers just for reading your thread. The word ‘money’ came in somewhere but it wasn’t paying much attention. Often best that way where this subject is concerned! Hat off to you dude!
 
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Rogueaquariums

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Next we built our first house in 2005… and I built my first fish room, with just five 20 amp circuits and about the size of a bathroom. We knew this was our stepping stone house, so I didn’t go too crazy… The display was the 180 gallon that I got while slinging fish in the pet store back in high school… back then I used the same strategy with my parents that I use with my wife today… it’s easier to ask for forgiveness than permission. :) I’ll never forget… my mother picked me up from work and my new tank was there standing up right… she called it a telephone booth. For a kid in high school, a 75 or 90 gallon was big, but I’ve always had some gene inside me where I wanted to go big, so I got a 6’ x 2’ x 2’ 180 gallon. Back then the 55 gallon we sold so much of because it was a 4’ tank with a reasonable price. I hated it because it was just 13” wide and made for a bad choice for a reef tank. So, I would always try and convince people to jump to an 18” wide 75 gallon, or even better a 90 gallon that was even taller. Now, I don’t like anything skinnier than 3 feet side… even if it’s a tank just 3 feet long!

This shot shows the display I had… along with the tanks I had in the fish room…



A better shot of the 180 after it had filled in…

Beautiful set up in the 180g talk about fully stocked.
 

Rogueaquariums

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So it’s time to move onto my SPS monster… I wanted to do this thread as close to chronologically as possible, but it’s like drinking from a firehose. I apologize in advance. There is just too much to discuss… so I will probably bounce around… After being in our first house for a few years, we began planning our forever home, and of course, I started putting my plans for my forever reef into action. I knew I wanted a big tank… and a WIDE tank… I was inspired by so many systems through the years… many of them at public aquariums like friend Joe Yaiullo’s Long Island Aquarium, and some from homes, like Steve Weast’s tank found at oregonreef back in the day. I always loved the “side view” of some tanks… whether it was my 10 gallon, 180 gallon, or some of these larger tanks. I also loved the expansive front view of systems that were wide, that made it feel like you were looking not at a tank, but at a piece of reef. As my plans came together I knew I wanted a tank in the eight to ten foot range… and again WIDE… which turned into the six foot wide range. The size crept up and up as I looked at the gallons, and I’ve always been a glass guy. Acrylic is just a pain to deal with the way I grow coralline. With the size of my tank, I knew to be made of glass it would have to be built on site. With all of the public aquariums I had visited and public aquarists I had befriended through the years, I pretty much knew I would be going with a fiberglass tank, with glass insert viewing windows. After mulling it over with public aquarium friends like Matt Wandell and Joe Yaiullo, and realizing I wanted 30” high viewing windows, the tank was to be 42” deep. I got quotes from two prominent fiberglass aquarium manufacturers… Waterdog in California, and Fiberglass Specialties in Massachusetts. Both had similar pricing, but I went with Fiberglass Specialties in Mass as they were closer to me, and had done many tanks for Joe Yaiullo up in Long Island. The tank was a fully custom build… they made a mold just for this tank, as I was very specific with what I wanted. Final dimensions ended up being 8.5’ x 6’ x 42” high… over 1300 gallons and two sides viewable… with an external overflow with four 2” drains… I cannot explain the amount of planning that went into this build! This was one of the photos I got during fabrication before the glass was put in…

What an epic build. Makes my 600g look small.
 

Rogueaquariums

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A shot from the corner of my fish room… I put my six foot refugium underneath my slick looking work table where I test water from and do different things…



Our home was built with three finished levels… many basement levels are built with low ceilings, but I had ours built with nine foot ceilings. The tank sits 36” off the ground, and so I built the Fibergrate deck around the tank that high. That left me six feet of height to walk around the tank, plenty for my short Sicilian frame… :)

What an amazing system. The planning, mock up and monies involved to create a system like this is unparalleled. You spent no expense. beautiful system
 
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copps

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This next level, I’m completely blown away by your set up and attention to detail.
Thank you... I come from a military family... my grandfather was killed in World War II when my father was just two years old... my father grew up poor in Brooklyn, NY as a result... my 4' 10" Sicilian grandmother was a seamstress, yet raised my father and Uncle very well despite tough circumstances... my father went on to become a pilot in the Air Force and flew over 200 combat missions in Vietnam... fortunately for me he survived... and went on to fly over 30 years for United Airlines, retiring as a Captain on the Boeing 777. I have tremendous respect for my father and he always raised me to have "attention to detail" more than any other lesson. This has done me well in life... especially in this hobby. His attention to detail helps in taking care of my systems when we're all on travel... while I'm on work travel my 15 year old son takes care of my systems, with my Pop as a backup. While I never entered the service, I've been a systems engineer for nearly twenty years working as a contractor for the US Navy on submarine trainers... traveling to the seven US submarine bases. You could see my father in the images earlier in this thread... here he is back in the day... before I was an idea...



I should also mention my mother, also raised in Brooklyn to Italian immigrant parents (but much wealthier than my father), supported my passion in this hobby significantly... she'd drive me to work at the fish store in Jersey I worked at for years after getting my working papers in high school... to this day she treats me perpetually like I'm 12 years old... like Ray Romano's mother in "Everybody Loves Raymond" :D I could commit the worst of crimes and she'd still show me the most unconditional love. :)
 
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copps

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Hey John, Texas is a big state. Kind of hard to miss it! May I suggest Big Bend National Park. I am always looking for your updates, either here or back at Reef Central.
Thanks for the suggestion! Hopefully we can eventually make it there... on our planned trip to New Mexico this Spring we are doing Carlsbad Caverns... and may jump across the border to hit Guadalupe Mountains National Park in Texas. I myself have been to Texas a bunch... for multiple MACNAs and a few speaking engagements for reef clubs... a big and beautiful state!
 

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