Glass Cages 120 Build

jandlms

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Well, after many trials and tribulations of truly epic proportions it has come to be the time to start a new build thread. The tank is a reef ready 120 built by Glass Cages. The stand is from GC also.The tank was ordered with two return holes drilled into the back wall. It also has a built in overflow with three holes. I intend to try the Bean Animal system.
62E9324E-E245-4806-8127-D532835387CC.jpeg


The tank and stand took three attempts to get delivered. Apparently COVID has messed up delivery companies in addition to everything else. The tank will be plumbed into my new fish room as the distinguished wife graciously allowed the construction of on in our new retirement home in the Ozarks of Arkansas. Info on lighting and other equipment will come in future threads.
The fish room is located approximately six feet behind the tank and will take a bit of plumbing by yours truly to become functional.

748E9118-476F-4D89-AE36-03AA0F716205.jpeg


Needless to say, I like large sumps. A four foot by seven foot hydroponics basin was originally purchased for a sump, but is a bit too large for the footprint. Thus two forty gallon breeders hooked together in series. More on the sump configuration in the future.

E2BEC2F4-B1AF-4597-929A-F298BFA90FCF.jpeg


B346328F-D308-4121-8E4A-4C805D8C848B.jpeg



The fish room will also contain quarantine tanks for the saltwater system as well as two racks (the grey and the red) with freshwater tanks. I hope the presence of freshwater in this room offends no one on this salty forum but apparently I am bitanksual or aquatically bisexual or maybe just a bit strange. Reality is I just like aquatic life in all it’s shapes and forms.
The fifty gallon lowboy against the end wall will be a coral frag tank plumbed into the main system. In closing, I have been out of reef keeping for about four years since my last reef imploded while I was vacationing in Belize. NOT a nice surprise to return home to. I have not played around with freshwater aquaria in ten or more years. Now that I’ve retired and have brainwashed the wife into allowing me to seriously play around again I plan on going for broke. Hopefully I can keep the updates coming fast and furious. I intend to have the reef going by the end of summer and the freshwater sooner. Wish me luck!
 
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Joe Glass Cages

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Well, after many trials and tribulations of truly epic proportions it has come to be the time to start a new build thread. The tank is a reef ready 120 built by Glass Cages. The stand is from GC also.The tank was ordered with two return holes drilled into the back wall. It also has a built in overflow with three holes. I intend to try the Bean Animal system.
62E9324E-E245-4806-8127-D532835387CC.jpeg


The tank and stand took three attempts to get delivered. Apparently COVID has messed up delivery companies in addition to everything else. The tank will be plumbed into my new fish room as the distinguished wife graciously allowed the construction of on in our new retirement home in the Ozarks of Arkansas. Info on lighting and other equipment will come in future threads.
The fish room is located approximately six feet behind the tank and will take a bit of plumbing by yours truly to become functional.

748E9118-476F-4D89-AE36-03AA0F716205.jpeg


Needless to say, I like large sumps. A four foot by seven foot hydroponics basin was originally purchased for a sump, but is a bit too large for the footprint. Thus two forty gallon breeders hooked together in series. More on the sump configuration in the future.

E2BEC2F4-B1AF-4597-929A-F298BFA90FCF.jpeg


B346328F-D308-4121-8E4A-4C805D8C848B.jpeg



The fish room will also contain quarantine tanks for the saltwater system as well as two racks (the grey and the red) with freshwater tanks. I hope the presence of freshwater in this room offends no one on this salty forum but apparently I am bitanksual or aquatically bisexual or maybe just a bit strange. Reality is I just like aquatic life in all it’s shapes and forms.
The fifty gallon lowboy against the end wall will be a coral frag tank plumbed into the main system. In closing, I have been out of reef keeping for about four years since my last reef imploded while I was vacationing in Belize. NOT a nice surprise to return home to. I have not played around with freshwater aquaria in ten or more years. Now that I’ve retired and have brainwashed the wife into allowing me to seriously play around again I plan on going for broke. Hopefully I can keep the updates coming fast and furious. I intend to have the reef going by the end of summer and the freshwater sooner. Wish me luck!
Yes! Thanks @jandlms for sharing. you are off to an excellent start. Following. Thanks for allow us to be a part of your journey.
 
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jandlms

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Sorry for the slow update but due to a stand manufacturing screw up errrr error I have had to put things on hold for the last few days. The stand was shipped from the manufacturer with a hole in the top for the overflow plumbing to go through and connect with the bulkheads. Unfortunately the hole was cut wide enough for two bulkheads not the three that I ordered. Anyway, being fifty six years of age with a lot of mileage on those years, I was unable to lift a 120 gallon tank up in the air , balance it on one hand and cut a wider and longer opening For the three bulkhead nuts.
Enter two brawny young landscapers. To make a long story short, they lifted, I cut and they replaced.
Bulkheads are now installed.
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Once the bulkheads were in, a process that took either two minutes or six days depending on how you measure it, I moved on to the sump.
Two forty gallons breeders were hooked in sequence via two inch bulkheads. I am going to try dividing the dual sumps into compartments with foam as opposed to acrylic. I like the idea of some extra biological filtration going on in the foam.

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First compartment on the left is for water entry and a skimmer. Second compartment on left is for a refugium probably with a sand bed. Third compartment will have extra rock and will probably eventually be blacked out for a cryptic refugium. Last compartment holds the return pump.
I still have not decided what I want to do with filter socks or a roller. Neither have I decided where a heater and water testing probes will go, but thats why the large sump. I have room to play around as much as I want. Probably.
More to come shortly. Tomorrow more work on the overflow plumbing.
 
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jandlms

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So having returned from a week long visit to the frozen tundra ( that’s Green Bay to you uninitiated in football matters - my home town), our intrepid adventurer finally has a bit of an update on the build. And a bunch of questions for the collective wisdom of R2R.
First the bean overflow pipes have been cut and positioned in the overflow. No pics as the overflow is colored and a top down shot of three pipes seems stupid.
First question. Just how tall should the three up tubes of the overflow be? I know they need to be differing heights based upon their function but how tall in relation to the overflow and each other? Or does it not really matter?
Moving on. I have roughed in the plumbing under the overflow. The Bean Animal pipes are 1” diameter As 1.5” pipes that would go with the 1.5” bulkheads will not fit in the overflow box because of size constraints.
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Question 2. Do the angles on an overflow drain need to be 45 degree or can they be 90? I personally don’t think it matters because the nineties restrict flow and as this is a drain I don’t think it matters. Plus I would have to order a whole butt load of 45 degree elbows. None of this is glued as I am following the measure ten times, fit five times and glue once methodology. Plus I don’t want to cut too many holes in the walls to reach the sump in the fish room.
Fishroom update. One ten gallon freshwater tank has water and filtration and even a few plants. More work on this aspect tomorrow.
Lastly. Lighting!
I have purchased a Aquatic Life G2 Hybrid fixture to pair up with two AI Prime HD16 LED fixtures.
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I plan on a mixed reef with mainly LPS, zoos, shrooms, and encrusting montis for corals.
Question 3. Any suggestions on bulbs for the T5 portion of the hybrid fixture?
Thats about it for now. Probably a few more frequent updates over the next few weeks. I have to head back to the frozen tundra again in two weeks for doctor appointments with the distinguished wife who allows allow of this and I aim to have the tank plumbed and water flowing when I leave. Wish me luck and as always your comments and advice are greatly appreciated.
 
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jandlms

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Well the journey continues.
I’ve played a bit with the aquascape and the sand has arrived.
BA529F0F-438E-4840-A4EE-573415FC93DA.jpeg

I’m thinking a bit more rock but that can be added after things start running.
Running yeah. That’s the problem. I have a sump full of saltwater ready to pump into the tank. The return line is plumbed and ready to be tested. I had hoped to pump the sump into the tank and place the rock and sand today.
Enter the Hydor Setzer 1600 return pump. Hooked up to the return it spins for a second or two then stops. It’s spins again for a second or two and it stops. This continues for maybe thirty seconds and the service LED lights up and it stops. Same things out on my workbench disassembled and assembled. Dang thing just sits there and shakes like an aged miniature poodle.
Small steps. I know small steps.
 
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jandlms

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Well today is the day to start getting wet hopefully. The returns to the tank are plumbed and as soon as I hook up the return pump (Hydor1600) I will run. Some water through for a leak test. I have been delayed by a faulty pump and the replacement just got here from Hydor. Hydor has been great to work with. The stupid thing would just sit there and spin for a second then stop and quiver. Repeat several times and then shut down. Infuriating.
Anyway, if no leaks, then sand goes in. Then aquascape. Then the rest of the water I have prepared. Over the next few days I will tinker with salinity and temperature and add Doctor Tim’s. If time permits I will post some pics as the process occurs.
 
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Yeah I know. The aquascape leaves a lot to be desired. At least it’s wet. The rest of the plumbing should be finished tomorrow and then we start the water moving.
Did I mention I hate plumbing!

96566C75-A589-49EC-9BE0-16BF3B6F96C0.jpeg

Water finally cleared up and I could actually see what a mess I had created.
 
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Plumbing is finally wrapping up. The final leg of the drains should go in tomorrow. Wednesday to dry and we test the plumbing on Thursday. The returns are already tested.
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The rocks have already cooked in saltwater and bacteria for four months. I start adding Dr. Tim’s on Thursday as soon as I get the salinity straightened out.
Next week I plan on ordering three or four small fish from liveaquaria.com . They go into quarantine for four weeks. I will introduce them one per week after quarantine if ammonia and nitrite have disappeared. As I mentioned before, stocking will be mainly small bright fish to provide color and movement.
Lights stay off for the next few months in hopes of minimizing or avoiding the ugly phases.
Pods and macroalgae go into the refugium section of the sump in a few weeks. CUC will be introduced after cycling and as needed. Skimmer won’t go on except for testing for weeks. Theoretically there will be little to skim But the oxygenation will be a plus.
I also plan on dosing one of the commercially available “coralline in a bottle” products so I would love any recommendations.
 
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Well the cycling process has begun. I have a thread over in the discussion section outliNing the troubles I have been having with the added ammonia part of dry rock cycling as well as certain test kits response to ammonia. Check it out if you are going to dry rock cycle a tank without fish.
Tank is full and water is flowing.
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The lighter colored rocks are new uncurled Marco rocks. The tan have been cooked in bacteria and warm salt water for four months or so. The system does have one small drip on the main tube of the Bean Animal overflow but that will hopefully be rectified this week.

The fish room has had a table top installed over the sump system.
4DCF6119-9237-431D-B3F2-8D2972BA045E.jpeg

The 20 gallon tank is quarantine for saltwater fish and the ten now houses three otocinclus for the freshwater tanks. The first quarantine resident is a small sail fin blenny. Even though the tank is just cycled or still cycling depending on your definition, I felt that the Benny was a good first addition. He won’t be hitting the display tank for at least four weeks after copper and internal parasite treatment. Copper starts tomorrow on both fresh and salt quarantine tanks.
I know it’s a bad pic but he is being a little shy today.
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A filter kit for my iPhone has been ordered from Amazon so hopefully the quality of my pics will improve shortly.
TTFN
 
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This is basically a double post from over on the discussion forum but I’m hoping those of you checking in here might have some further advice.
cycling has been going on for a couple of weeks with ammonia issues continuing.
31B1C03F-D6C9-442F-AE97-AD9D2558FABA.jpeg

Another water change will hopefully lower that further Although I am getting sick of water changes. Nitrite is present so something is happening cycle wise. Nitrates are very low indicating it has MAYBE stalled at the nitrite to nitrate phase?????
pH is way too low. Maybe that is exacerbating the cycle issues? I am checking the LFS for some pH raising additives today.
some sort of cloudiness maybe a bacterial bloom has been happening also.
F7095A3B-8598-4977-9284-FDE0CFD3637D.jpeg

Not sure what this is or how to cure it beyond patience. I am not going to plumb a uv sterilizer in for a start up bloom and I am not sure a filter sock will catch this stuff.
Finally I have a couple of bottles of coralline algae culture starter sitting here. It should be added before August 2nd optimally. I would also like to get an order of pods and other little critters to start diversifying the system but I am not sure it would be ok to add either.
Any thoughts from you folks would be gratefully received.
 
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Well, after many trials and tribulations of truly epic proportions it has come to be the time to start a new build thread. The tank is a reef ready 120 built by Glass Cages. The stand is from GC also.The tank was ordered with two return holes drilled into the back wall. It also has a built in overflow with three holes. I intend to try the Bean Animal system.
62E9324E-E245-4806-8127-D532835387CC.jpeg


The tank and stand took three attempts to get delivered. Apparently COVID has messed up delivery companies in addition to everything else. The tank will be plumbed into my new fish room as the distinguished wife graciously allowed the construction of on in our new retirement home in the Ozarks of Arkansas. Info on lighting and other equipment will come in future threads.
The fish room is located approximately six feet behind the tank and will take a bit of plumbing by yours truly to become functional.

748E9118-476F-4D89-AE36-03AA0F716205.jpeg


Needless to say, I like large sumps. A four foot by seven foot hydroponics basin was originally purchased for a sump, but is a bit too large for the footprint. Thus two forty gallon breeders hooked together in series. More on the sump configuration in the future.

E2BEC2F4-B1AF-4597-929A-F298BFA90FCF.jpeg


B346328F-D308-4121-8E4A-4C805D8C848B.jpeg



The fish room will also contain quarantine tanks for the saltwater system as well as two racks (the grey and the red) with freshwater tanks. I hope the presence of freshwater in this room offends no one on this salty forum but apparently I am bitanksual or aquatically bisexual or maybe just a bit strange. Reality is I just like aquatic life in all it’s shapes and forms.
The fifty gallon lowboy against the end wall will be a coral frag tank plumbed into the main system. In closing, I have been out of reef keeping for about four years since my last reef imploded while I was vacationing in Belize. NOT a nice surprise to return home to. I have not played around with freshwater aquaria in ten or more years. Now that I’ve retired and have brainwashed the wife into allowing me to seriously play around again I plan on going for broke. Hopefully I can keep the updates coming fast and furious. I intend to have the reef going by the end of summer and the freshwater sooner. Wish me luck!
Awesome! I want to do a fish room someday. I'll have to check back in to see how it turned out!
 
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jandlms

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Sorry for the delay in updates but I’m being PATIENT. Cycling has been a slow process but now we have some light at the end of the tunnel. Today’s test results show a decrease in ammonia and nitrite and a slight uptick in nitrate.
96EAA011-76CB-4286-9F89-9E41741BB392.jpeg

Sorry for the poor phone pics lighting is kind of crappy. They really do show ammonia less than .25ppm which is the best I think I can hope for with this type of test kit. Nitrite is less than .25 ppm also and slowly decreasing over the last two days. Nitrate is still less than 5 ppm but increasing just a bit. As I mentioned earlier in the thread I have added one of the brightwell denitrifying blocks into the sump and I believe it might be doing its job and wiping out some or most of the nitrate being produced.
Best news is that I am noticing a decrease in the bacterial bloom cloudiness in the display and the sump.
D3877B32-97B6-4085-BD2D-9F465F8AC067.jpeg

Sorry for the glare. Two bottles of coralline algae booster cultures were added a week ago before they got beyond their best by date. Consensus on this forum and others was that they would not do any good long term but they sure were not going to do any good sitting on the shelf and expiring. Consensus also seemed they would be useless but not create or exacerbate any problems. So I used them. Time will tell.
Twenty pounds of real actual live rock from the Gulf was added to the sump to start adding diversity. Hopefully no nasty tag alongs but so far nothing apparent.
A bit of buffer was added to the sump as the pH is still too low. Around 7.7. Probably caused by too much carbon dioxide in the enclosed fish room. I will add an air stone or tow tomorrow to try and raise the pH a bit.
I disappear back to the frozen tundra of Lambeau Field and it’s environs this Friday so the tank is just going to sit and adjust to itself for about ten days with out me touching anything. Lights are still months away from going on but I do see a bit of light at the end of the startup tunnel. When I get back I am going to start seriously working on dividing the sump into compartments, getting pods and macroalgae into the sump for a refugium, add the lawnmower blenny currently sitting in quarantine, get another fish or tow into quarantine, and wait patiently for the system to stabilize to begin adding corals.
Comments and criticism are as always thoroughly welcome. Just don’t tell me to be patient. I’m working on it.
Cheers!
 
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jandlms

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After ten days back in Wisconsin, the cycling process appears to be pretty much finished.
Ammonia and nitrite have dropped to zero and nitrates are less than 5 ppm.
EDC29B4C-E06C-4D83-87FC-4F022AE8629C.jpeg

The bacterial bloom appears to be completely gone.
07379CF2-4638-4F09-AC9C-EA8E69416E9C.jpeg

A Sailfin Blenny was moved from quarantine and into the display tank. A Molly Brown Blenny was placed in quarantine as the next addition.
Next steps are to build and plumb a serious water mixing station in the fishroom, place the gyre in the main tank and get it adjusted, and compartmentalizations the dual sumps into refugium and return sections. A bottle of pods and some macro for the refugium will be ordered for addition next week.
T5 bulbs for the lighting system arrived and will hopefully be installed for testing soon. Thinking about lights and corals being turned on and added sometime in October. Patience is supposedly a virtue. More pics will be posted as soon as the work is completed.
 

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