I finally pulled the trigger on my 220ish in-wall Display with basement equipment room

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I've been keeping a 50 gallon Oceanic Reef tank since 2004. I have always wanted a bigger tank and expected that "someday" I would get my wish. However, life gets in the way though! Kids, pets, house renovations, running a small business, and not knowing if we'd stay in this house permanantly, were all factors that delayed and put off my "Dream Build". I did have success and tons of enjoyment with my 50 gallon tank, even with no sump and all hang-on equipment. It was very stable considering I had zero technology, and it did well and I really enjoyed it for many years. The problem was... I got bored with the limited size, always wanted the ability to keep more/bigger fish (Tangs) and more of corals that I love (SPS). After a many years of life taking priority, as well as losing some interest in the tank, it started to show. Corals slowly died off, and Mojano's took over the tank. This past year, the salt creep was really starting to build up on the bottom trim of the tank, and the wood inside the stand was expanding and bowing. It was leaking slowly and it was only a matter of time before the stand failed and the tank would crash to the ground. I'd either have to take the tank down and get out of the hobby, or finally pull the trigger and go big with my dream build. After a visit to an old friend and fellow reefer's house and seeing his beautiful system, the inspiration hit me. I'm going for it! More to come soon...

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Thanks! Yes that is where the tank will be/is! I am a little bit late starting this build thread. I was busy building my system, so I didn't have much time to build my thread. But I'm pumped to finally start documenting, so the thread should move along pretty quickly I hope :)
 
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Taking the old tank down. Sad day but exciting to move on. Putting the 60ish lbs of the original live rock in a rubbermaid to bleach and store it. I've had almost 20 years to think about the new tank but this stage is definitely overwhelming feeling because I am realizing how much work this is going to be.
 

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This is the spot for the new tank. It is a junk closet that used to be part of the old bedroom that was here when I bought the house. Goodbye Guitar Hero, 5 bags of miscellaneous wires, 30 blankets, and 6 old neck massagers that I didn't even know we still had, and two old vacums! Like I said, "junk closet". I like this spot because it will be a focal point of our living room. As you can see, when we are chilling and watching TV, the tank will be in perfect view. I also decided that I want the entire corner and the right side of the tank to be open. I want to be able to view the tank from the side. It will also make the tank somewhat viewable from the kitchen and dining room, and give it a 3 dimensional look with some depth. This will be a bit challenging because there is electrical that will need to be moved, and I won't know if this is a load carrying wall until I demo the drywall and can see everything opened up. The rough measurements for the taped area are 72"x30"x25. My plan or "challenge" is to do every bit of the work myself, including demo, plumbing, electrical, building, and finish work. I do not want to hire anyone for anything, if I can help it.

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I decided that this is going to be my spot in the basement to build my equipment room. Again, it's being used as a storage/junk spot, but it's perfect because it is located near the main drain for the house. I'll be able to plumb my sink and whatever other drains I will need. It's also got hot and cold water lines running through the area, so copper plumbing will be easier. Also, my R/O setup is already in here. It is the opposite side of the house though, so the drains and return plumbing will be about 30 feet. No biggie...

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Extended the sewer line cleanout to create a new drain for my future sink. Plumbed it up and it's ready to go. Don't be grossed out, the brown splash marks aren't what it looks like... it's rust marks from the cast iron pipe up above ;)

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Quick story which may become more relevant later in this build thread...
Domenic from @OnPointCorals has been one of my best friends since high school. One day around 2007-2008 or so, Dom came over to visit and check out my new house. I was showing him my tank, which I had just moved over from my previous apartment. This was back in the glory days of my reef tank looking absolutely MINT! He was very interested because he was in the middle of building a large Cichlid only brackish tank. I was desperately trying to get him to "do salt water instead"! I was going on and on about how much better salt water is, and the enjoyment I was getting out of the critters in my live rock, the hitch hikers that I didn't purposely buy, and the fish and corals that made my reef tank so beautiful and enjoying. I showed him how I had "fragged" some mushrooms and Toadstool corals, when I could tell that I had REALLY GOTTEN HIS ATTENTION. I had always had fresh water tanks with aggressive fish, Cichlids, Oscars, etc... but this was an entirely different beast and I was convinced that he would love it like I do. Whatever I said, and whatever he saw that day, changed his mind and he went salt water instead! Fast forward 15 or 16 years, and now Dom has one of the best coral fragging SPS systems and Coral fragging business's that you will find anywhere on the internet! His knowledge has far surpassed mine by leaps and bounds, and he's been instrumental in helping me plan this build and giving me the motivation to do it. After touring his current setup, it is truly mezmorizing and was beyond motivating for me. I hope he doesn't mind me telling this story :) :smiling-face-with-halo:
 
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Ordered custom display tank -
After measuring 100 times and and lots of going back and forth with construction ideas, I settled on 70"x30"x25" for the tank size. I then went shopping for a custom tank. I ended up using Glass Cages to build my tank. It was between Glass Cages and Waterbox. Cages was a bit cheaper in my case, had a slightly shorter "stated" delivery time, and a couple of friends were all about Glass Cages. So I ordered a 70Lx30Dx25T with an interior centered overflow. Low iron glass on the front and right side, low iron euro-bracing, hidden waterline, and corner reinforcement with black silicone. So that gave me 8-10 weeks to get my construction done, and research and purchase the rest of the equipment.
 
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The wife didn't want an open hole and dust all over the house for 3 months, so I started my construction in the basement and put a LOT of time into my equipment room. I knew I wanted some type of flooring that would look good, and also clean up well. I found these PVC 12x12 garage tiles on Vevor.com. They aren't perfect, but they are priced right, and they do the job.
 

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Finished enough of the floor to start framing. Had to move the electric Instant Hot water heater that I installed a few months before, and my R/O setup. I did install a waterproof membrane under the tiles. Its made of cork with a plastic coating. I needed to make the floor a little softer to stand on, and to take the sound out of the floating plastic tiles touching the concrete on every step you take. It was kinda loud before I installed the membrane underneath, now it's dead quiet. If I had it to do over again, I would wrap the membrane a couple of inches up the wood framing around the walls. This way, a large spill could be contained, rather than water being allowed to find it's way underneath the membrane and sitting between it and the concrete.

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Time to build a sink. I looked around at all the typical "utility sinks" and couldn't really find anything that I liked, however, real sinks that are not made of plastic are mad expensive! The price difference is huge, but the plastic tubs weren't really in the design I have going on in my head. I also really want to install a garbage disposal on my sink... and I'm not sure how well the plastic tubs will stand up to the abuse of a garbage disposal?

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While at Lowe's exploring my options, I started a conversation with a friendly and helpful employee. We chatted for a while just bantaring. I told him about my project. He was interested and found it cool. He went above and beyond trying to help me find something that would work for me. He started pulling out some older box's on the floor that had been sitting around for a while and coated in dust. He said, "a few of these we don't even display anymore." He was scanning them all to see if he could discount something for me... when he pulled out this Allen and Roth granite-composite double sink, and gave it a scan. He did a double take, and then looked at me with a smile. "This is your lucky day... this is scanning at $69.00!" He double checked to make sure. The new model of this sink was out and displayed at over $400 price range, and it looked identical to this one. Is this sink exactly what I wanted? Nope... but hey I'm doing the construction, so I can build around whatever I get. DONE DEAL! I took the money that I saved and bought a nicer garbage disposal (InSinkErator Evolution 3/4HP) and PVC fittings to install it and make a drain setup! This disposal has reverse and is rated for bones, so it should eat up anything that I put into the drain (including snail shells and small pieces of rock that may fall in when rinsing filter socks, or equipment). I'm a firm believer in Karma and treating people with respect, and the way you want to be treated. Had I not started a friendly conversation with this dude, this deal would never have found me. I'm pretty pumped about it!
 

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I wanted to have some area around the sink to use as a work bench, or area to place equipment during maintenance or cleaning.


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Following!
Love the in wall builds. Will probably be me in a few years once I reach the limits of the 80 gallon(and convince my wife)
Yeah the wife can hinder things if she's not on board lol - Luckily, mine appreciates the hobby and thinks it's beautiful, even though she doesn't get involved. She was actually pushing me to do the project, so I'm thankful for that.
 
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SUMP - Before building any further, I needed to pick out a sump. After shopping for a large oversized sump, I ended up ordering a custom Synergy Reef SK-60 Clarisea SK5000 & Filter Sock Sump. Rick from Synergy Reef was awesome to work with. He answered questions super quick, and we ended up chatting about other stuff like small business ownership, etc... He has a nice family business. Although it was a little bit more than I had budgeted for a sump, I'm super excited because the build quality looks unreal. I am kind of a "Gearhead" and besides being the sump setup I am looking for, this sump looks like a Lamborghini of sumps from all pics, vids, and reviews I looked at. The main selling point and reason I went with the SK-60 is because this sump can be easily converted from two large Filter socks to dual Clarisea Filter rollers somewhere down the road. I won't need Roller's for a while, but nice to know I can easily switch to them with no alterations. He promised a 4 week delivery.
 
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