My Big Beautiful Budget Breeder Build

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I've been quietly waiting to hear how the algae issue was unfolding for u. Glad to hear ur making progress. Everything looks great as usual.. cheers.


Lobophyllia? That green is hypnotizing.
Thanks man.. I have been spending a huge amount of time on my tank the last few weeks trying to get ahead of the GHA. I lost my red polyp NPS gorgi because of it and a few other things aren’t exactly happy. I purchased a canister/diatom filter and have been temporarily running that while I scrub my rocks. It’s a great tool for exporting waste from tank and leaves my water crystal clear.

that‘s a lobo and the neon green center had me the instant I saw it :) moved the scoly up onto my rocks in a last ditch effort to save it. The damaged flesh has healed but it isn’t inflating or showing a feeding response so I’m just going to leave it alone and observe for now.
 
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OP
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Sorry for the delay everyone, pretty bad when you can’t keep up with your own thread.. lol ;Facepalm

Tank is looking like it's starting to fill in real nice!
Yes.. growing some ultra GHA, if you need some nice chunky frags let me know.. lol ;)

Have I asked this before? Have you tried a little vibrant?
Yes.. Im about 7 doses into treatment and it’s definitely seems to be helping along with stepped up maintenance.

If the Miracle ever looks half that amazing, I'll be a happy camper!
Im sure the miracle will be beautiful someday soon
 
OP
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So I had to break down my satellite tank as my home brewed overflow didn’t seem to be functioning properly anymore, not sure if it was getting clogged or what but I couldn't risk a flood.. the good news it was an excuse to set up another mini Reef in our bedroom ;)

18A72EEA-F331-41FF-B3D0-5C46D9AF5571.jpeg
 
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Victoria M

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So I had to break down my satellite tank as my home brewed overflow didn’t seem to be functioning properly anymore, not sure if it was getting clogged or what but I couldn't risk a flood.. the good news it was an excuse to set up another mini Reef in our bedroom ;)

18A72EEA-F331-41FF-B3D0-5C46D9AF5571.jpeg
I need more details on this tank sir.
 
OP
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I need more details on this tank sir.
Its a 5 gallon top fin.. honestly it’s a little cheesy with super thin glass so not sure how long it will be up but I grabbed it from PetSmart for like $39 because I needed a quick instant tank.. I like the back chambers which act like a AIO and the LED’s are plenty bright for the junk corals I have in it. I did add a mini blue LED strip and will be upgrading the pathetic return pump shortly. Would be a fun little tank to modify but the glass is scary thin

F764CF00-3061-46E9-9F51-2509E89CA2C1.jpeg
 

Victoria M

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Its a 5 gallon top fin.. honestly it’s a little cheesy with super thin glass so not sure how long it will be up but I grabbed it from PetSmart for like $39 because I needed a quick instant tank.. I like the back chambers which act like a AIO and the LED’s are plenty bright for the junk corals I have in it. I did add a mini blue LED strip and will be upgrading the pathetic return pump shortly. Would be a fun little tank to modify but the glass is scary thin

F764CF00-3061-46E9-9F51-2509E89CA2C1.jpeg
Wow. Super cool.
 

Terr-c

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Well maybe not so big... :D

My goal is to set up the best reef possible for the least amount of money and effort, I want something that will be easy to maintain and that checks all my boxes while staying within my budget, I’ll be sourcing the cheapest possible equipment while simultaneously not completely sacrificing quality or functionality and I will also try to incorporate some of the newer technologies where possible and I’ll also be doing a few DIY components as well..


I have been planning this build for over a year and have considered every possible tank, stand, filtration system, lighting and other potential equipment choices, their cost and how everything would work together.. because of limited budget and room I decided on a tank somewhere around 50 gallons and after much thought I’m going with a 40 breeder because of its perfect dimensions and super low cost, for lighting I’m Going with a t5 / LED hybrid, I have been very happy with my nano box LED’s on my current tanks but I miss my old t5’s so I decided this tank will have the best of both worlds in lighting and for filtration I’m going with a simple Berlin style sump, skimmer ..


Some of my methods or outdated equipment choices may raise some eye brows but for the most part my choices will revolve around cost, ease of set up and maintenance or because it’s just what I have become comfortable with over the last 35 years of reefing..


One of the great benefits of extended planning is that I’ve been catching sales and discounts on equipment and in some cases I have been able to substantially upgrade from my original plans, so far just about everything I have purchased has been on sale or discounted, some of it ridiculously!


Tank 40 gallon breeder < petco sale $50

Steel im Stand < sale price $49

eshopps rs-75 sump < sale price $138

eshopps pf-300 overflow < sale price $48

Coral Box d300 dc skimmer < sale price $135 + they sent me the new upgraded $250 plus model :)

aquatic life 36” t5 fixture with Coral Box LED supplement < sale price of everything including bulbs $480

Power strip < $20

wave makers 2 Jebao ow-25’s < discounted price $110

AUQA Gadget MightyJet 538 gph DC Return pump < $99

ATO.. Hydrofill Ti < sale price $48 = $21 off $69 retail!

150W ehiem heater $27

Used Reef Keeper Lite controller < $200 total with new probes, float switch’s and mounting system.

DIY 12v dc cooling fan < $6

DIY ATO container < $8

Black Paint for back wall of tank and black silicon for sealing stand. < $10

Substrate < $15

Plumbing supplies < sale price $20

Dosing container < sale price $45

DIY Control center components < $25

BRS parasitic pump for Alk dosing < sale price $59

Coral box single station WIFI dosing pumps x2 < sale price $119



APPROXIMATE TOTAL COST (not including livestock) $1,701

**** current tank photo October 2019 ****

View attachment 1240493
Beautiful tank!!
 
OP
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Wow, your tank looks great! I also have a 40-gallon breeder, but mines just growing in. Fantastic candy cane colonies too
Thank you! I have had all sizes and I love the 40, your limited on fish but I love the tank dimensions for my space and it’s so easy to take care of :) The candy’s started 4 years ago as a 2 head frag and the mother has produced multiple colony’s including the two smaller ones on the right hand side of my tank and others that I have gave away..

original frag from January 2016

76CF8621-0AE2-484A-AA2A-45F2C43A5818.png
 
OP
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Beautiful tank!!
Thanks so much! Nice to see another Va Reefer here on R2R :) BTW.. I have family scattered throughout the valley ;)
 

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