It's about time I Post the FrankenCube

AquaCave

TangerineSpeedo

Well-Known Member
Review score
+0 /0 /-0
View Badges
Joined
Jun 8, 2022
Messages
695
Reaction score
910
Review score
+0 /0 /-0
Location
SoCal
I had a few Nanos going, and I was at my LFS and they had a Red Sea 170 stand for cheap because someone had to warranty the tank. Well that was the start. I then found an Innovative Marine 40g from their Offer Up site. It was just a tank they used for shows low iron glass with a smoked rear panel. I also found a Eshopps Prodigy overflow that was a return on Amazon for cheap. I really like the look of them and the box that it came in, it was like unpacking an Iphone.
So far I only have a few hundred dollars in this set up and I pretty stoked. But I was a bit nervous that I was going to drilling this unobtainium tank for the overflow and returns. So I bought a used Waterbox 16g thinking I could practice drilling that. It is the same width of the IM/Red Sea just the depth is only 12inches.
Originally I was going to set this tank up as a deep water temperate and tie in my two other temperate nano's into one system. While I was planing that, I set up a Fijicube 10 AIO as a tropical. That in itself got quickly stuffed to the brim. So the temperate system got put on hold and the 40g cube was now going to be a tropical.
I found out how easy it was to drill tanks so I decided to just go for broke on the 40g. I also wanted to hit the ground running so I threw in a bit of live rock and sand along with a HOB filter on the waterbox. I mapped out the overflow and the returns on the 40g. I decided I was going to put the overflow dead center with a return on either side. The caveat to this was my lighting was going to be hung from the ceiling, because the Eshopps overflow box sits up(or at least the way I have it) pretty high so you can't put an arm for lights dead center on the back of the tank. Drilling the tank was easy, I did it on a foam pad in the kitchen. I found a kit with a plastic guide so your holes are just where you want them, with no jumping around with the drill bit. I am glad I didn’t have to drill a lot of holes because the bit started to dull halfway through the second one.
IMG_9178.jpeg
IMG_9179.jpeg

The reason why I chose having an EXT overflow was I really do not like internal overflows sticking into the display area, it disrupts flow and is hard to scape around. I also made sure the the break in the return and overflow pipes did not extend past the bottom of the tank. I have seen too many people having to cut their PVC if they have to remove their tank for any reason. This way if you do you can just empty it and set it on the floor and Bob's your uncle.
Next was I would have to build the sump. I bought a Aqua Japan (I think) 10g from an LFS. I wanted a RedSea 170 glass sump but couldn’t find one so I figured I could just build my own. I also wanted to try to use the AquaMaxx 170 rollermat because I am over doing socks.
IMG_9214.jpeg
IMG_9215.jpeg

The sump was a pretty tight fit esp. since I wanted to do a reservoir but I made it work. But that Idea was quickly scrapped when I found the Somatic 60 sump. The open configuration was so much better and the Aquamaxx 170 fit in the first compartment like a dream.
In the meantime I switched out the Waterbox 16g off of the top of the stand with the 40g so I could start on the plumbing. I thought maybe a weekend I could knock it out.... Noo! If you read my recent post What GHA has taught me My tank is now in the middle of the GHA uglies. So its been a bit of me doing plumbing and electronics and trying to fit it all in a RS170 cabinet. Oh and there is Life... that is happening too.
So I am happy to say that tomorrow we are going on our maiden voyage as you can see I packed so much in there. I still have to do the manifold for an UV and chiller.
IMG_9415.jpeg
IMG_9416.jpeg
 
World Wide Corals

Vivid Creative Aquatics

Upgrade Your Flow!
Review score
+0 /0 /-0
View Badges
Joined
Oct 12, 2017
Messages
1,105
Reaction score
1,516
Review score
+0 /0 /-0
Location
Phoenix, AZ
? I don’t understand… THAT is the display…!:beaming-face-with-smiling-eyes::beaming-face-with-smiling-eyes:
Wait, you mean the thing on top?….
I love looking at the life-support system under a tank as well - almost as much as the display tank itself.
In fact, our own "FrankenCube" tank has a fully-open bottom, so that all the stuff in on display :cool:

1659986785211.png
 
OP
TangerineSpeedo

TangerineSpeedo

Well-Known Member
Review score
+0 /0 /-0
View Badges
Joined
Jun 8, 2022
Messages
695
Reaction score
910
Review score
+0 /0 /-0
Location
SoCal
Really nice build - even to the fans on the stand to reduce heat! I like the controller "shelf" as well, very clean setup, how's the scape looking?
The GHA is doing well! Most of it is over an inch now.... Although I think it's lived out its life, big chunks are falling off now....
 
Nutramar Foods
OP
TangerineSpeedo

TangerineSpeedo

Well-Known Member
Review score
+0 /0 /-0
View Badges
Joined
Jun 8, 2022
Messages
695
Reaction score
910
Review score
+0 /0 /-0
Location
SoCal
Following! Show us “the thing on top”.
Give me a minute... lol I am doing some aquascaping, and moving some fish around, have to make a lid today. If I bring home anything from RAP tomorrow I have no place to put it...
in the meantime look at my 10g which has turned into a overfilled storage tank for this one!
IMG_9410.jpeg
 

A Young reefer

Valuable Member
Review score
+0 /0 /-0
View Badges
Joined
Sep 21, 2021
Messages
1,668
Reaction score
2,367
Review score
+0 /0 /-0
Location
North pole
Give me a minute... lol I am doing some aquascaping, and moving some fish around, have to make a lid today. If I bring home anything from RAP tomorrow I have no place to put it...
in the meantime look at my 10g which has turned into a overfilled storage tank for this one!
IMG_9410.jpeg
It looks great!
 
Orphek OR3 reef aquarium LED bar
OP
TangerineSpeedo

TangerineSpeedo

Well-Known Member
Review score
+0 /0 /-0
View Badges
Joined
Jun 8, 2022
Messages
695
Reaction score
910
Review score
+0 /0 /-0
Location
SoCal
Ok, so here are a couple pics of the “Above”
Added the scape on the left, made the screen top. Oscar the Raccoon is in there on a temporary basis, to see what she can do about some Aptaisia. Lucy the blue tang is also temporary. Both were a Box store rescue on their death beds. As small as Lucy is she thinks the whole tank is hers. She has a little slit in the scape that she hides/lives in. Which she is protecting by fronting. I also put a lawnmower blenny in who was small but now is big!
E75423A7-1BA2-4F00-BB17-56B17D1E54F8.jpeg
21080F1D-72C1-4FCB-BBDB-EB431AEAC812.jpeg
 
Winterfest Live Sale
OP
TangerineSpeedo

TangerineSpeedo

Well-Known Member
Review score
+0 /0 /-0
View Badges
Joined
Jun 8, 2022
Messages
695
Reaction score
910
Review score
+0 /0 /-0
Location
SoCal
So... A little bird told me I need to update my tank build thread. @WheatToast
It does not feel like I have done much, but looking at the pics I have. Plus just the growth of the corals is crazy. A little bit of GHA has come back is some small areas, But I added a clean up crew of some snails and a couple emeralds and some herms they seem to keeping everything well groomed.
Starting with the equipment I added another MP10 to keep some flow across the back wall. I think I will replace the two MP10's I have on the right side with the new Maxspect that can shoot both ways and run that vertically. I finished up my manifold, but haven’t run anything thru it yet. I have a GKM UV in the sump now, which is working fine. I probably go with a bigger UV when that bulb goes. The other thing I am going to plumb in is the chiller, but I have a number of months till that is a concern.
I switched out my Finnex heater for the Helios system, Nothing wrong with it, just slightly under powered. I am going to throw that in my 30L. I did purchase a APEX system a V2 with the salinity probe. It started out with a Hate/Hate relationship, I am warming up to it. I purchased the Neptune ATK first then the Apex. I am using the IM ATO 5g container with the slide out fill drawer, which is really nice. My Aquamaxx 170 filter roller was going thru a roll every two weeks (it's 50 microns, so I switched to a RedSea roll and just cut it down to size. The RedSea is about 200 microns so it works so much better. I bought a black Besta cabinet at Ikea and I am keeping my Apex in there, which works out to keep it dry and to pull some of the cords out of the small RS170 cabinet. I bought a ETM Versa (new version) to run Kalk, I was running close to the Evap rate on my 40g which is funny because I was mixing up kalk every two days and filling up a 2.5 ltr dosing container when my ATO pretty much didn’t budge. I have switched to AFR, which right now seems to be working out well. I figure it is easier to slightly supplement if I need to.
I want to give a special shout out to @Vivid Creative Aquatics for the RFG Flex he set me up with and the SPS kit that fixes the Apex salinity probe issue!
My current fish roster is
2 Bangai Cardinals
1 Cleaner Goby
1 Lawnmower Blenny
1 Indigo Lyretail damsel
1 Maroon clown (couldn't help myself, he was the size of my pinky nail)
1 Blue fish with a yellow tail named Lucy ( A near death fish I rescued from a big box store)

Invert roster
2 Tuxedo urchins
1 cleaner shrimp
2 emerald crabs
1 mystery crab (he has been behaving himself so he is staying in for now)
A few red and blue legged hermits
various snails
few Limpets
Micro Brittles Stars
Small Fan worms
1 Condylactis gigantea named Butters. Sat in one place for months, the started heading towards my hammers, so i put her in the corner, seems she is happy there.

Softies
Green Leather
Long polyp Leather
A very slow growing long polyp
2 Kenya's
Various Zoa's
Clove polyps
Various Mushrooms

LPS
1 Cotton Candy Torch
3 Hammers

SPS
Blue Stylo
Green Porc
Green slimer
Green Pavona
Yellow Anacropora that has seen better days, got it for free, I think I am bringing it back.
2 different varieties of birdsnest
A reddish orange montiporia I think.
A reddish/blue branching monti
1 Favia

Here is some pics!
IMG_9791.jpeg

IMG_9790.jpeg

IMG_9785.jpeg

The Mystery Crab....



IMG_9787.jpeg
IMG_9788.jpeg
IMG_9792.jpeg
 
Last edited:
OP
TangerineSpeedo

TangerineSpeedo

Well-Known Member
Review score
+0 /0 /-0
View Badges
Joined
Jun 8, 2022
Messages
695
Reaction score
910
Review score
+0 /0 /-0
Location
SoCal
Very interesting little crab. I wonder what he is?!
He does look a bit like a shore crab to me. Right now he is the size of a emerald crab, so I don't know if that is his juvenile colors or not. I guess I am waiting for @WheatToast to chime in. He also is starting to slightly come out during feeding times, which is how I got that picture. But watching him, he just seems to scavenge through the sand like a hermit would. But I just set up a Mangrove tank that will be his new home if things change.
 
BRS

WheatToast

2500 Club Member
Review score
+0 /0 /-0
View Badges
Joined
Jul 18, 2021
Messages
3,580
Reaction score
4,181
Review score
+0 /0 /-0
Location
Bay Area
Very interesting little crab. I wonder what he is?!
He does look a bit like a shore crab to me. Right now he is the size of an emerald crab, so I don't know if that is his juvenile colors or not. I guess I am waiting for @WheatToast to chime in. He also is starting to slightly come out during feeding times, which is how I got that picture. But watching him, he just seems to scavenge through the sand like a hermit would. But I just set up a Mangrove tank that will be his new home if things change.
My guess would be Pachygrapsus crassipes (striped shore crab) since you mentioned elsewhere that it likely hitchhiked from the California coast (and unsurprisingly so since they’re so common here in CA tidepools). I also found the similar-looking Hemigrapsus nudus (purple shore crab) while searching for possible alternatives, though these have purple spots on their claws while Pachygrapsus crassipes has plain claws like those in the photo above.
So... A little bird told me I need to update my tank build thread. @WheatToast
It does not feel like I have done much, but looking at the pics I have. Plus just the growth of the corals is crazy. A little bit of GHA has come back is some small areas, But I added a clean up crew of some snails and a couple emeralds and some herms they seem to keeping everything well groomed.
Starting with the equipment I added another MP10 to keep some flow across the back wall. I think I will replace the two MP10's I have on the right side with the new Maxspect that can shoot both ways and run that vertically. I finished up my manifold, but haven’t run anything thru it yet. I have a GKM UV in the sump now, which is working fine. I probably go with a bigger UV when that bulb goes. The other thing I am going to plumb in is the chiller, but I have a number of months till that is a concern.
I switched out my Finnex heater for the Helios system, Nothing wrong with it, just slightly under powered. I am going to throw that in my 30L. I did purchase a APEX system a V2 with the salinity probe. It started out with a Hate/Hate relationship, I am warming up to it. I purchased the Neptune ATK first then the Apex. I am using the IM ATO 5g container with the slide out fill drawer, which is really nice. My Aquamaxx 170 filter roller was going thru a roll every two weeks (it's 50 microns, so I switched to a RedSea roll and just cut it down to size. The RedSea is about 200 microns so it works so much better. I bought a black Besta cabinet at Ikea and I am keeping my Apex in there, which works out to keep it dry and to pull some of the cords out of the small RS170 cabinet. I bought a ETM Versa (new version) to run Kalk, I was running close to the Evap rate on my 40g which is funny because I was mixing up kalk every two days and filling up a 2.5 ltr dosing container when my ATO pretty much didn’t budge. I have switched to AFR, which right now seems to be working out well. I figure it is easier to slightly supplement if I need to.
I want to give a special shout out to @Vivid Creative Aquatics for the RFG Flex he set me up with and the SPS kit that fixes the Apex salinity probe issue!
My current fish roster is
2 Bangai Cardinals
1 Cleaner Goby
1 Lawnmower Blenny
1 Indigo Lyretail damsel
1 Maroon clown (couldn't help myself, he was the size of my pinky nail)
1 Blue fish with a yellow tail named Lucy ( A near death fish I rescued from a big box store)

Invert roster
2 Tuxedo urchins
1 cleaner shrimp
2 emerald crabs
1 mystery crab (he has been behaving himself so he is staying in for now)
A few red and blue legged hermits
various snails
few Limpets
Micro Brittles Stars
Small Fan worms
1 Condylactis gigantea named Butters. Sat in one place for months, the started heading towards my hammers, so i put her in the corner, seems she is happy there.

Softies
Green Leather
Long polyp Leather
A very slow growing long polyp
2 Kenya's
Various Zoa's
Clove polyps
Various Mushrooms

LPS
1 Cotton Candy Torch
3 Hammers

SPS
Blue Stylo
Green Porc
Green slimer
Green Pavona
Yellow Anacropora that has seen better days, got it for free, I think I am bringing it back.
2 different varieties of birdsnest
A reddish orange montiporia I think.
A reddish/blue branching monti
1 Favia

Here is some pics!
IMG_9791.jpeg

IMG_9790.jpeg

IMG_9785.jpeg

The Mystery Crab....



IMG_9787.jpeg
IMG_9788.jpeg
IMG_9792.jpeg
Thanks for the update! Your fish must love all of those caves in your scape and the coral variety! Keep up the good work!
Do you know what species “Lucy” is?
 
OP
TangerineSpeedo

TangerineSpeedo

Well-Known Member
Review score
+0 /0 /-0
View Badges
Joined
Jun 8, 2022
Messages
695
Reaction score
910
Review score
+0 /0 /-0
Location
SoCal
Thanks for the update! Your fish must love all of those caves in your scape and the coral variety! Keep up the good work!
Do you know what species “Lucy” is?
"Lucy" is all blue with no yellow on her belly. So you never know with Petco, They do get them from a big supplier here in LA. Everyone I have seen at Petco here has HELLE, they do run carbon in their systems, and I am sure it is not the best. I have convinced one manager at one not to run carbon in tanks with tangs.
Unfortunately the pictures do not show the extent of the caves and hides, But everybody has their place or niche. It's funny I have a crack/ fissure that Lucy hides in, but she is bigger now so her tail sticks out. But she still thinks she is being covert.
Thanks for your opinion on the shore crab, I was joking on it taking a Uber to my house. In all seriousness it shouldn’t be in there.
 
AquaCave

Are there parts of the hobby that you don’t talk about?

  • I am an open clam . . . er, open book about my tank challenges

    Votes: 121 51.7%
  • I share many of my challenges, but not all of them

    Votes: 70 29.9%
  • I rarely share my reefing challenges

    Votes: 32 13.7%
  • I’m still clammed up. I have nothing to say

    Votes: 15 6.4%
AF
Top