My 1st tank, Innovative Marine 100g Ext

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neo1738

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So I'm a little farther into the "build" than I anticipated for starting this thread. I was always looking into the hobby and finally got the go ahead. I thought "how hard can it be right, buy a tank, get a filter, get some fish and voila!". Well needless to say I've learned a TON in the last month and still have so much more to learn. I started by getting the tank and assembling the stand. It was honestly very simple, love the APS aluminum. Strong but light weight. Here is a list of my gear.

Innovative Marine 100g ext tank
Trigger Sapphire 39 Sump
Reef Octopus eSsence S-130 Protein Skimmer
Current USA IC Pro 48" x2 lights
Current USA eflux 1900gph DC Pump
Current USA eflux 2100gph wave pump
BRS 600w heater w Inkbird wifi controller
Tunze ATO with 15 gallon IM reservoir
Tunze Eccochic Refugium light
Then I got 2 Kasa Power Strips which have load sensing which I can integrate into my home automation that if a device stops drawing power I can have a notification sent to me.


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Saw another thread that said to use some clamps to get the top to sit still so you can secure it. Worked great!

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Tank looks great!


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Next I had to teach myself how to plumb a tank. I thought it would be fairly easy but getting three pipes to all end right next to each other to go into the Trigger Sapphire 39 drains was not as easy as I thought. Took a few iterations but finally got it all plumbed in.

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Now that the tank was plumbed it was time to leak test. Had 2 couplers, 2 bulk heads, and 1 junction near the return that was leaking. Was able to just tighten them all up and got it fixed. After that it was time to work on electrical and trying to get it as well run as possible.

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I know it looks like a rats nest but it's actually not. All those are wires that are individually coiled and then held together. After electrical it was time to work on my aquascape.

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I originally set it up in my garage then started to PaleoBond in chunks then move to the tank and PaleoBond more together. 24 hrs later I added water, prime, red seas coral pro salt, 60lbs live fiji pink and 60lbs carib-sea dry sand fiji pink. I added a LED light strip under the tank for aesthetics and to use as a work light when under the tank. I'll try to get a pic when the water clears up tomorrow. I plan to start the cycle with Tim's Ammonia and Bacteria Starter. I will put the ATO to the left of the tank and got a large wooden laundry hamper to hide it in as I originally was going to get a Sapphire 26 sump which would have left room under the tank for the ATO reservoir.
 
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neo1738

neo1738

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Thanks definitely is. My 15 mo old daughter was the inspiration. She waves at the Roku screen saver and says "hi" to them. Loves the local aquarium at the zoo. Had always wanted a reef tank back in the day but this was the kicker to get my wife to say yes lol.
 
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Water is starting to clear up nicely! Have to install my RO/DI system and ATO today. Electrician will be coming in the next few weeks to install a GFCI breaker for me on that zone and move that zone onto our whole house generator. Crossing fingers that should be done before any fish arrive. Also starting my cycle today! (Don't worry I'll turn off the lights for the cycle.)
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Water is starting to clear up nicely! Have to install my RO/DI system and ATO today. Electrician will be coming in the next few weeks to install a GFCI breaker for me on that zone and move that zone onto our whole house generator. Crossing fingers that should be done before any fish arrive. Also starting my cycle today! (Don't worry I'll turn off the lights for the cycle.)
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Where are you getting your fish?
 
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neo1738

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So today was install RO/DI system and start cycling the tank day!

Got the BRS 6 stage 200gpd water saver unit. Overall easy to install. Wasn't thrilled about the coupler to adapt to water fitting under the counter is plastic. I bought a unit of amazom that is brass but it leaked at the ball valve. Swapped in the cheap plastic and it worked...:rolleyes:

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The second stage system was backwards for what I wanted so I was able to just remove the screws on top and flip the mounting bracket around.

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TPM into second stage 12-13 out is 0.

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After this I did a baseline water check. All good here!
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Next I pulled socks (they were dirty) and added some Dr Tim's Nitrifying Bacteria and ammonia.

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Few hrs later after dinner tested the water and perfect!

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Turns out 1/4" tubing is perfect for sticking RODI tubing into to extend it. No fittings required! 1st time topping off the tank. Should have ATO ready in a day or two life gets in the way as you can imagine.
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Already loving my decision to just get my own RODI.
 
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neo1738

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Alright topped off w RODI, trying to resist the urge to test water 100x a day lol, Got my Tubze ATO and IM 15 gal tank setup. Unfortunately the hamper I planned to hide it in is a half inch too small so I'll use it to keep the tank away from my daughters princess scooter lol...back to amazon for a long term solution. All in all good day though. Ammonia down to about 3ppm definitely livable. Guess I'll just keep waiting.......Here are pics from today.

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neo1738

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Still searching for an appropriate way to hide the ATO tank. If anyone knows something that will fit the beast please let me know. Other than that just waiting on the cycle.....2 days and already feels like forever. I'm not good at waiting this hobby will surely teach me some patience.
 

terraincognita

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Still searching for an appropriate way to hide the ATO tank. If anyone knows something that will fit the beast please let me know. Other than that just waiting on the cycle.....2 days and already feels like forever. I'm not good at waiting this hobby will surely teach me some patience.

You could get a JBJ 10G stand and put it next to it, and then get a 10G side tank, and put frags and other stuff you "don't know what to do with right now" in it, lol
 
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neo1738

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Thanks for the suggestions, as of now the wife won't allow another tank :( I probably could in my utility room in the future but for now I'll let you know what I come up with. I did order a second powerhead Current USA 2100 gph for my DT. The one is more than enough power but to get great circulation needs to be 80% feel that might be too much for the fish/coral so decided some redundancy and can lower the power a little to get the same circulation was best.

I also found a cheap $16 powerhead on Chewy to circulate my saltwater for changes.
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Also got a cheap 10g bucket from Amazon which will let me to make 10% water changes. Figure 2 of those a month with regular maintenance and Chaeto should be enough.

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Lastly,

It's been 2 days since I added my Tim's One and Only so I was able to put the filters back in. So much quieter. Ammonia still about 3ppm today. No nitrites.

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