ksfulk's Red Sea Reefer 525xL

Discussion in 'Member Tanks' started by ksfulk, Sep 2, 2016.

  1. ksfulk

    ksfulk Grow sticks, grow!!! R2R Supporter Build Thread Contributor Reef Tank 365 Article Contributor Partner Member 2019

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    Third tanks the charm, right? ;)

    When I sold my last system I thought I would get out of the big tanks for a while and relearn the appreciation of having a small 30-40 gallon tank. I was tired of all the extra maintenance of the 300+ gallon system and because I was hating the extra work, the results were less than stellar. So, I sold it all. The entire thing walked out of my life on Aug 4th. And here I am, making a new build thread, because my wife said something that made me question her sanity.

    "Dont you think it looks kinda... sad... without a fish tank there?"

    :eek: I'm pretty sure thats why I married her. She may not like the hobby or the financial shenannigans that surround it, but she knows what makes me happy, and she supports that as well. Anyhow, enough fluffy bunny backstory. I hit the forums hard, wanting to find something managable, something that I didnt have to plumb through the walls, and something that was a system I could have success with, but was still something I would have to "learn". The red sea reefer tanks really are slick, and Ive seen enough nice looking ones out there, that when I got the email from BRS saying that I was getting 10x points for any purchases that weekend - BAM! 525xL ordered!

    Equipment List:
    Tank
    : Red Sea Reefer 525xL - white
    Lighting: *ATI 60" Sunpower 8x80w mostly Giesemann bulbs
    Return Pump: Ecotech Vectra M1
    Powerheads: *Neptune WAVs
    Skimmer: Deltec 1456 DC
    Calcium/Alk: BRS 2 part dosed with a *Neptune DOS pump (still debating on getting the DDR)
    Nutrient Management System: KZ Zeovit, Vertex RX-Z 1.5 Zeolite Reactor, Vertex RX-U Reactor (Carbon), Starting 4 KZ system (Zeo - Bak, Start, Food & Lites)
    Heaters: Finnex 500w digital thermometer & Eheim Jager 300w
    Controller: *Neptune Apex Gold (or is it now classic? Whatever).
    ATO: *Avast Marine ATO w/ peristalic pump (also picked up a Neptune PMUP and might use that with the Avast Sensors)
    Rock: 90lbs of Pukani (been curing for about three months now) and 25lbs of Marco cherryscapes
    Sand: 80lbs of Tropic Eden MesoFlakes (might need a little more - we'll see how it looks)
    * equipment for previous build

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    Meanwhile, there was some work to be done in the basement. I wanted to fix the holes in the wall from where I had plumbing running through into the sump room, I wanted to get something better than carpet down for the tank to sit on and I wanted to fix some of the bad outlets that were on those walls. So, here comes a boatload of tools, a fair bit of fear and a tablet with youtube videos loaded on it. A million and a half trips to Home Depot, numerous curse words and a pair of ruined pants later - I had ripped out the old paneling, ripped out the water damaged (some old, some new, some wet and a bit of blue?) and put up new greenboard. I also cut out a section of carpet and laid tile on the cutout for some good foundation for the tank to stand on.

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    There was a bit of delay on the tank getting to my house, but on Monday, it finally showed up, and I was dang near giddy when it did. I got the stand unloaded (771 lbs on that pallet for anyone wanting to know) and into the basement for assembly. For those that are in Broadfield 's Red Sea Reefer thread, you saw my near heart attack moment on Monday night. I opened the stand boxes (2 boxes) and was perplexed. I ordered (and paid additional) for a white stand, but nearly all of the pieces in the box were black. I opened the other box (cabinet doors) and found all the pieces in that box to be white - I nearly cried because I figured I had been sent wrong box and would have to wait for new ones to arrive before assembling things. Made a quick call to Red Sea (who picked up on the first ring!) and spoke to someone about it. Seems like they have had numerous people want black interiors for their stands, and the new ones (not sure if its the new 525xLs or the new reefers in general) are being made like that to align with customer requests (and also likely to save them some money). Fine. Thats great... not like I planned all of the equipment and stuff to work with a white background :mad::mad::mad:

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    Anyhow, things are still in the works. I have most of the equipment needed to get this thing up and running, but Im waiting for the glue to dry on my plumbing before getting it all in place. Ihope by this weekend, things are wet and salty, but we'll see how that goes. More fun things to come... like my color scheme and the sump :D

     
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  2. andys

    andys Active Member

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    Nice. I love my 525XL
     
    ksfulk likes this.
  3. ksfulk

    ksfulk Grow sticks, grow!!! R2R Supporter Build Thread Contributor Reef Tank 365 Article Contributor Partner Member 2019

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    So, more fun things. Did a water test in the garage to make sure that the tank didnt leak before bringing it in the house. Everything was fine, but I was surprised at how clear the glass is, even with hose water in it. That clarity is going to make some amazing views in the months and years to come! Also, I got one of the greatest complimements Ive ever heard from her. Now, to fully understand the gravity of this, realize my wife HATES that I turned part of the basement into a fish room, and she cannot stand the amount of time Ive invested in this over the years "just to keep some fish". She doesnt even go down into the basement anymore because she doesnt want to look at it. When we brought the tank inside and set it on the stand, she looked around and said:

    "This all is going to look really nice. The tank is pretty even without anything in it. You did a really good job."

    I was floored. I just nodded and she went back upstairs, leaving me to "play". Im still not sure if she had been in the wine or not, but still - these tanks are so nice, people that dont like fish tanks appreciate them. HUGE selling point - Red Sea should get on that - pronto.

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    For those of you that dont know. There are about six boxes worth of stuff in your Red Sea crate. One of the largest boxes is actually the sump. I figured there would be a bunch of odds and ends in that box, and I was wrong... its all sump. And its heavy! So, with looking at all of the slick builds out there for the reefer series, I decided I wanted to do something that looks good too, and since I ordered a white cabinet and was thinking about going Zeo, I would them it all red and white.

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    So, some orders for Vertex reactors, 20' of red 3/4" PVC from BRS and a crapload of schedule 40 fittings later, I was ready for the tank to show up and be amazing. Its definately amazing, but starkly black on the inside. I thought about painting it for about three minutes, then decided that the black would hide mounting brackets and hardware better, so I left it alone. I bought some red vinyl off Amazon and covered the back of the sump (still debating on covering the sides and/or the bottom) and put it in there - wow! they dont leave you much wiggle room on the sides of this thing - every bit of that chamber is sump!

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    The drains were going to bother me though. All the return plumbing was red and white, and here were these gray/black drain pipes. I laughed at my self and picked up a can of gloss white spray paint on the way home last night and taped off the connections and the big knob on the main drain pipe and shot them all with a coat of white. I have to finish coat them this evening, and then I plan on taping and hitting the main drain valve knob with a coat of red to match the other plumbing - problem solved.

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    Spent the majority of last night wiring some lights into the sump area (still have to figure out wire management, as my wire staples would go through the otherside of the stand!) and fitting in the reactors, skimmer and return pump, as well as work on the plumbing so I could let it dry overnight to water test it this evening. Found out a few things that halted my progress.

    1.) Vertex carbon reactor has a nice dual union and is able to be hard or soft plumbed. It, however, is 1/2" plumbing, not 3/4" - so I need to get some adapters. :mad:
    2.) The unions I was sent were threaded, not slip :mad::mad:
    3.) I got 2 3/4" gate valves, and 1 1/2" gate valve :mad::mad::mad:

    Luckily, that means I can just get the adapter for the Vertex reactor and run it right to the built in valve on the reactor and wont need to buy another gate valve :) Still, it wasnt fun discovering that at 10:30 last night after huffing solvent fumes for an hour.

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    Gratuitous shots of things that are being stored in the tank while Im working below...

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    Here's something thats been hiding in QT for a few weeks now...

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  4. ksfulk

    ksfulk Grow sticks, grow!!! R2R Supporter Build Thread Contributor Reef Tank 365 Article Contributor Partner Member 2019

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    Its quite a beautiful tank - Im really excited to get it filled and running. Im hoping that Ive spend enough time trying desperately to keep things working that this time I can do a bit more watching and a lot less panicking :)
     
  5. Patekphilippe

    Patekphilippe Member

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    Verry nice set up
     
    ksfulk likes this.
  6. Danny1496

    Danny1496 Active Member

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    looks great so far
     
    ksfulk likes this.
  7. pelphrey

    pelphrey Valuable Member R2R Supporter Showcase Editor Build Thread Contributor Reef Tank 365

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    Found my reading material for the afternoon!
     
    ksfulk likes this.
  8. arodmcinco

    arodmcinco Active Member

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    Not sure if you want to lose that blue cap on the vectra I did my sump in all red and white I just bought the adapter kit Ecotech sells so I can toss the blue caps away
    And if you need and red vinyl tubing let me know i have a bunch left over
     
    ksfulk likes this.
  9. pelphrey

    pelphrey Valuable Member R2R Supporter Showcase Editor Build Thread Contributor Reef Tank 365

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    Haven't filled my tank up yet, but I am glad to hear how clear you say the glass is! Like you my wife doesn't really care about the fish tank "stuff" but once she saw the white cabinet and how it fit in our house I believe she is slightly curious now! Looking forward to seeing how the painted pipes work for you and the background on the sump was a great idea!
     
    ksfulk likes this.
  10. ksfulk

    ksfulk Grow sticks, grow!!! R2R Supporter Build Thread Contributor Reef Tank 365 Article Contributor Partner Member 2019

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    Thanks everyone for the words of advice/encouragement. Snuck out of work an hour early so I could get some work done on the tank before going out with the family this evening. Got the lights hung, got my order of pods and phyto from @AlgaeBarn and changed all of my sediment filters, carbon block and resin in my RO/DI system and started making water.

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    AlgaeBarn, surfnsalt and pelphrey like this.
  11. ksfulk

    ksfulk Grow sticks, grow!!! R2R Supporter Build Thread Contributor Reef Tank 365 Article Contributor Partner Member 2019

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    Bonus...

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  12. Tahoe61

    Tahoe61 Valuable Member R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Build Thread Contributor Partner Member Partner Member 2018 Moderator Emeritus

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    Boy you do not mess around, wow, and zeovite to boot. Love the color to the wall.
     
    ksfulk likes this.
  13. ksfulk

    ksfulk Grow sticks, grow!!! R2R Supporter Build Thread Contributor Reef Tank 365 Article Contributor Partner Member 2019

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    It's late. Been working on this beauty all day. It's gone from boxed and crated to up and running in five days :eek:

    Anyhow - rock, sand, water, salt and zeo is in and rocking. I can't believe how silent everything is. The loudest thing in this system is the cooling fan for the ATI fixture!

    Now gratuitous shots of the tank and a bonus video!



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  14. ifarmer

    ifarmer Valuable Member Build Thread Contributor

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    following along.
    you are on your way to having a great reef tank.
     
  15. Chris Adams

    Chris Adams Valuable Member

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    That is a beautiful setup and you are doing a great job.
     
  16. jeremy

    jeremy Well-Known Member

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    Looks awesome. Following.
     
  17. ksfulk

    ksfulk Grow sticks, grow!!! R2R Supporter Build Thread Contributor Reef Tank 365 Article Contributor Partner Member 2019

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    Sounds of Silence
     
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  18. ksfulk

    ksfulk Grow sticks, grow!!! R2R Supporter Build Thread Contributor Reef Tank 365 Article Contributor Partner Member 2019

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    Thank you all for your kind words. I think this system is great. I sat downstairs this morning for about an hour just listening to the system run. Now its a matter of hoping that the user can live upto the equipment. :confused:
     
    Centerline and Mrwilcox281 like this.
  19. bknapp

    bknapp Has been left unattended MTRCMember

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    Looking good so far!
     
  20. mmw64

    mmw64 Well-Known Member

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    Following. Looking great!
     
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