John's Fluval Evo 13.5

Just John

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I had been toying with the idea of setting up a new reef tank, but had not gotten beyond that. I think it may have been this almost 2 foot long eel from New Year's Eve in 2020 that made me realize how much I wanted one. I live on the Gulf of Mexico and was visiting some friends on their boat at a local marina when it was attracted to the light in the water. I managed to use the wicked fast reflexes that every 54 year old has to pick it up out of the water for a quick look. (I think it was a speckled worm eel, but it's hard to tell in the dark.)



A few days later I got started looking at tanks and decided on getting something small this time around (I have had 80 and 55 gal tanks in the past).
I decided on the Fluval Evo 13.5. It couldn't get much simpler. It includes most of the things you need and is about $160.


1627354261348.png




I now have the Evo 13.5 AIO without much added:
- Stock lid with LED lighting (needs to be upgraded)
- Stock 132 GPH pump (needs to be upgraded)
- Added Fluval heater and Inkbird
- Added the chamber 1 InTank Media Basket

InTank Media Basket inside the right chamber.
In Tank Basket.jpg
 
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Just John

Just John

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I pulled this old cabinet out of the garage. It definitely needs some cleaning up, stain work and a shelf added, but it's the right size, has an open back and it fits in with the rest of our furniture. It was originally an old school media center from the 1940's or 50's, with a very cool looking radio, a tv with an 8" screen, and a turntable. That was all removed ages ago. I wish I knew where it was today.

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Just John

Just John

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It took a month, but water is finally in the tank. I bought some cured live rock and the guy at the LFS said to get no more than 7 lbs. It looks a little barren in there.

jan 31.jpg


Bought some more live rock and was was warned by the LFS guy that I was getting too much and would probably regret it, LOL. I learned that I can't trust the "expert" at the LFS on the first day. Got my first frag the next day - 3 polyps of Scrambled Eggs. They really look lonely down there.


Feb4.jpg
 
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Just John

Just John

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By a stroke of luck, the Florida Frag Swap was a few days later and only an hour away. Since I had cured live rock and photosynthetic corals produce almost no waste, I decided to get some if I saw anything interesting. At one booth the seller offered me a discount on a couple of his frags because they had aiptasia on them. Not surprisingly, I decided to skip that booth all together. I ended up with Utter Chaos, Purple Monsters, Orange Bam Bams, Goblin's Fire, and a green Rhodactis. I spent about $120, yay for me! I know, slow down man! Patience! I couldn't help myself.

Feb 9 b.jpg
Feb 9 a.jpg
Feb 9 c.jpg
Feb 9 d.jpg
Feb 9 e.jpg
 

Fishingandreefing

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By a stroke of luck, the Florida Frag Swap was a few days later and only an hour away. Since I had cured live rock and photosynthetic corals produce almost no waste, I decided to get some if I saw anything interesting. At one booth the seller offered me a discount on a couple of his frags because they had aiptasia on them. Not surprisingly, I decided to skip that booth all together. I ended up with Utter Chaos, Purple Monsters, Orange Bam Bams, Goblin's Fire, and a green Rhodactis. I know, slow down man! Patience!

Feb 9 b.jpg
Feb 9 a.jpg
Feb 9 c.jpg
Feb 9 d.jpg
Feb 9 e.jpg
I am not a super fan of zoas but looking good there.
 
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Just John

Just John

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It was a big day. First I found two very coral like paperweights my grandmother gave me when I was about 10 and second, I decided to join the official Orange Bam Bam fan club. I'm not in the photo, but I look pretty good with the haircut! Who am I kidding, I look fabulous!

20210726_214325.jpg


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Reefing_addiction

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Well hello! Zoas are a thing I have a problem with. In fact slowing down is something I have a problem with.

I started with a 16 which I packed to quickly and moved to a 75 in less than a year!!!
Can’t wait to see your tank develop!!
A few pictures

My 16 right before I swapped to a larger tank
3B952BDA-00C2-48D3-A7A8-B45A06A8BD30.jpeg


My current 75
B6E9BB5D-CEA2-4FF3-AC71-4BF53EE9F462.jpeg


@footgal because she loves zoas just as much as me and because she is restarting her 20!
 
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Just John

Just John

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Well hello! Zoas are a thing I have a problem with. In fact slowing down is something I have a problem with.

I started with a 16 which I packed to quickly and moved to a 75 in less than a year!!!
Can’t wait to see your tank develop!!
A few pictures

My 16 right before I swapped to a larger tank
3B952BDA-00C2-48D3-A7A8-B45A06A8BD30.jpeg


My current 75
B6E9BB5D-CEA2-4FF3-AC71-4BF53EE9F462.jpeg


@footgal because she loves zoas just as much as me and because she is restarting her 20!
Those are both beautiful tanks! I have been stuck inside and for weeks now because of some torn cartilage in my hip. Since I am in this chair all day I decided to do my tank build thread, even though my tank is already built. It may be a bit pointless, but I'm doing it anyway. It's keeping me entertained. So, you won't have to wait long to see how it turns out. :)
By the way, this is about the time that I realized I was developing an obsession with zoas myself!
 
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Just John

Just John

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Something small happened, but it is still amazes me. The green Rhodactis mushroom I bought needed to have some of the rubble it came on removed. I ended up pulling it away with a razor blade and discovered that I had accidentally cut off a tiny (2 - 3 mm) piece of the mushroom. It was still on the rubble. In four days it went from grey slime to something green with the beginnings of a Rhodactis texture on the top. In only 17 days it was a fully formed mushroom. Nature is
awesome!

Feb 19th
Feb 18.jpg


Feb 23rd
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Mar 2nd
Mar 2.jpg


Mar 7th
Mar 7.jpg
 
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footgal

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Well hello! Zoas are a thing I have a problem with. In fact slowing down is something I have a problem with.

I started with a 16 which I packed to quickly and moved to a 75 in less than a year!!!
Can’t wait to see your tank develop!!
A few pictures

My 16 right before I swapped to a larger tank
3B952BDA-00C2-48D3-A7A8-B45A06A8BD30.jpeg


My current 75
B6E9BB5D-CEA2-4FF3-AC71-4BF53EE9F462.jpeg


@footgal because she loves zoas just as much as me and because she is restarting her 20!
Thanks!!!! I do love zoas :D
 

footgal

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By a stroke of luck, the Florida Frag Swap was a few days later and only an hour away. Since I had cured live rock and photosynthetic corals produce almost no waste, I decided to get some if I saw anything interesting. At one booth the seller offered me a discount on a couple of his frags because they had aiptasia on them. Not surprisingly, I decided to skip that booth all together. I ended up with Utter Chaos, Purple Monsters, Orange Bam Bams, Goblin's Fire, and a green Rhodactis. I spent about $120, yay for me! I know, slow down man! Patience! I couldn't help myself.

Feb 9 b.jpg
Feb 9 a.jpg
Feb 9 c.jpg
Feb 9 d.jpg
Feb 9 e.jpg
Hey a great way to spend time is researching online!!! I found it very useful to make a list of corals I wanted (EX: White Zombie Zoas) and the average price for them (hobbyist and retail shops are very different prices!). This way when I found them, I knew if I was getting a good price and I had something in mind to look for when I go to frag swaps/LFS! :D
 
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Just John

Just John

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I accidentally fed a few of my zoas a sample of coral food that had gone bad. It got it from the Florida Frag Swap. The polyps closed for days. Eventually one of the Purple Monsters polyps burst.
1627422491520.png


But here is the amazing thing. My Rainbow Incinerator polyp opened a completely different color. A week later, a second polyp grew and it was the same new color scheme. The colors under the blue lights are accurate. They are now a pastel green and bubblegum pink.

Before
coral 4.jpg


After - Pastel green and bubblegum pink!

Incinerators.jpg




Update: After 3 months The colors are still slowly changing. Here they are now.

1628657639527.png
 
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Just John

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A R2R member who posted a picture of his fuzzy sinularia offered to frag a piece for me. He comes to my area occasionally, so I was able meet with him.

the coral I'm getting.jpeg


Here is what I got from him. R2R members really are great!

Mar 27.jpg
1627496332055.png
 
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Just John

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The light on the tank is not very good, so I decided to upgrade to the Fluval Marine 3.0 led. I mainly got this one because it fits into the same slot as the stock light. It's Bluetooth controlled with custom schedules, etc. like so many other new lights. It's a lot better, but still not fabulous. I just really want to keep the top on!

Light on lid.jpg
 

Fishingandreefing

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The light on the tank is not very good, so I decided to upgrade to the Fluval Marine 3.0 led. I mainly got this one because it fits into the same slot as the stock light. It's Bluetooth controlled with custom schedules, etc. like so many other new lights. It's a lot better, but still not fabulous. I just really want to keep the top on!

Light on lid.jpg
Nice but i will be running an AI prime 16 hd with a mess top. Not a fan of the cover look.
 
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