Gunnar’s IM 25 build

mclovings

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Introduction:
Hi and thanks for checking out this thread. I just joined reef2reef and this is my first post. I got into reefing while serving in the military in San Diego California from 2013-2017. I moved back home to Washington state and have always wanted to get back into the hobby.

We have a 4 year old son who loves learning about animals. We decided to pull the plug and get a small tank for Christmas. We wanted a setup that would require as little maintenance as possible.


Where I live the only local source for anything saltwater related is Petco. To my knowledge, there are no local reefers. I’ve slowly been ordering everything we need. It’s not a perfect setup but it’s getting there.

Equipment:
Tank: IM 25 - 24”x20”x12”
Stand: Custom fabricated tube steel with removable magnetic panels and all sides.
Filtration: Filter floss
Bio filtration: Marinepure 2” bio blocks
Media: Chemi-pure Blue
Protein Skimmer: None!
Lighting: Ecotech Radion XR15 Pro (G5) with diffuser
Return: Stock DC return pump
Power head: Undecided
Overflow: Custom CNC’d surface skimmer boxes
ATO & AWC: Auto Aqua AWC
Live rock: 25 lbs of VERY live rock harvested from Florida by KPAquatics
ATO and AWC reservoirs: 3 Custom CNC’d 6x16x32” acrylic reservoirs
RODI: Marine Depot 6 stage.
Dosing: Undecided

Goals:
My goal is to have an easy system which I can leave safely unattended for up to a week. Eventually, I think an Apex controller with water spill sensors would be prudent but for now I have what need. I also have an Eheim twin auger auto fish feeder with submersed feeding station to take care of daily unattended feeding.

AWC system:
I looked into several different water reservoir systems. I needed three different reservoirs. One for ATO, one for new salt water, and one for old salt water since I can’t hook it up to a drain. I wanted to maximize the size of these reservoirs under the tank to allow for The maximum amount of time between fill ups. I was going to have to spend over $500 to get three different reservoirs which were not an ideal size.

I ended up buying about $200 of quarter inch cast acrylic. I own a CNC machine so I ended up designing and fabricating my own reservoirs. The three reservoirs fit perfectly under the tank. The ATO holds enough water for about a 1-1.5 months. My Auto AWC will change roughly 0.4 gallons or about 2% of the water on a daily basis.

When my ATO is empty, I simply run my RODI line from my kitchen sink to the reservoir. When my old salt water reservoir is full, I drop in a submersible pump and pump all the water into my sink. When my NSW is empty, I’ll just fill it with RO water and mix the salt inside. No buckets are ever required. Everything is handled by pumps.

My hope is the daily water changes will be effective for nutrient export since I don’t have a skimmer.

Thanks for following along. Please feel free to leave suggestions or concerns about my plans below.
 
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mclovings

mclovings

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mclovings

mclovings

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Steel stand that I welded up out of .1875 tube. The metal looks bare but it is coated with a rust and corrosion preventative. Some people may say additional 90 degree supports may be needed to prevent the stand from buckling. Normally I would agree but this tank is so small it’s not needed. Believe me, this stand is overbuilt for it’s application. I should have used .125 steel instead.

I later coated the 1” plywood top with epoxy so it is completely sealed.

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