My first adventure into saltwater, SCA 150

Hectaka

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Originally I had planned on jumping in head first and getting a waterbox 270 or red sea XXL 900 but before I could even start there was a change of plan as a bowing wall in the basement is progressing quicker than anticipated. That meant my budget just plummeted and I needed to look at smaller or used setups, I chose used since I really don't like going small. I came across a marketplace post on here and was able to talk some friends into going with me 3 hours each way to pick it up.


Equipment:
Tank - 150 gallon SCA with Euro brace
Stand and canopy - custom plywood painted black.
Sump - Trigger platinum 39
Lighting - Razor X R5 300W LED
Skimmer - tbd, leaning towards Reef Octopus Regal 150int
Return Pump - Jebao MDC-8000
ATO - 10g acrylic with Tunze Osmolator 3155
Reactor - Vertex 2L with Sicce Syncra 2.0 pump
Heater - 2 x 500W Finnex Titanium heaters
Powerheads - 2 x gyre icecap 2k
Controller - Apex
Tests - Red Sea Ca and Mg, Hanna Phos and UL Nitrite, plan on getting tests for NO3 and Alk but haven't decided on brand yet. Will probably get more test kits as well being a scientist I nerd out over data and testing. Bought the Red Sea Master Care test kit.

The controller and powerheads are new everything else was bought used from @ColdOceanReef as a package with the tank.
 
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Aquashella
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Hectaka

Hectaka

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Oops, hit that post button too quickly.

I got most of a setup with some room left to personalize. I've been busy cleaning it up as much as I can. Struggling to get inside the overflow as you can see in the picture but it's coming along.

I've also been hitting the brs sale this week and picked up a ro/di, 2 icecap 2k's, and an apex.

My wife just made us plans to head out for the evening so I'll post a full equipment list that I have so far when I get a chance soon.
 

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Hectaka

Hectaka

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Nice tank! I’m starting an SCA 150 build myself, they are nice tanks for sure. There are a few active SCA builds going on now.

Let us know your plans for stocking and equipment!
Thanks, I'm pretty excited for this. I always had freshwater tanks growing up but it's been awhile and my biggest was 35 gallons probably 8 years ago. I still need to figure out all my equipment and I want to setup a water system so this will be a long build but I'm willing to take the time to make sure it has a good outcome.
 
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BirdGuy21

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Taking it slow and thinking things through is always a good idea. I just built a mixing station for my build. With my current 45 gallon setup making individual buckets of water wasn’t so bad, but with 150 gallons that just isn’t practical. Depending on how your source water is, I’ve been very happy with the BRS 7 stage 150 gallon per day water saver unit. It comes with all the hook ups and float valves and made it pretty simple to run it to a mixing station.
 
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Hectaka

Hectaka

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Taking it slow and thinking things through is always a good idea. I just built a mixing station for my build. With my current 45 gallon setup making individual buckets of water wasn’t so bad, but with 150 gallons that just isn’t practical. Depending on how your source water is, I’ve been very happy with the BRS 7 stage 150 gallon per day water saver unit. It comes with all the hook ups and float valves and made it pretty simple to run it to a mixing station.
I already bought the brs 6 stage 100gpd system and I'm currently trying to track down some vertical water tanks. I'll start adding an equipment list to the original post.

My main focus currently is to finish cleaning the tank and the hurdle I just encountered is there's a tiny gap between the plastic and glass of the overflow that is full of crusty stuff and I'm not sure how to get anything in there to scrap it off. Not sure if I'm being overly concerned but I figure the cleaner I can get everything the better.
 
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Hectaka

Hectaka

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A few questions for anyone who could offer some advice.

I'm really struggling to figure out how to clean the area between the glass and plastic of the overflow. Maybe I'm thinking to much into this and it won't be a problem. Amy advice would be appreciated.

Second question is where can I get a self leveling mat that's big enough 60x24? I've looked all over the internet and can't seem to find anything that's the right dimensions. I have emailed SCA to see if they sell anything but I couldn't find anything like this on the website.
 

BirdGuy21

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I believe I saw others recommend a closed cell neoprene mat, like a yoga mat. But they specified closed cell. Steve from SCA is usually very responsive so I would think he will get back to you soon.

The stuff between the acrylic and glass overflow I would think is some kind of carbonate build up. If it’s really far down you could try to straighten a metal clothes hanger to scrape it loose.

I had no luck in finding vertical storage containers so ended up going with two 44 gallon brute cans. I built a stand so they could be stacked on top of each other and plumbed with uniseals and ball valves. The top can is for RODI and the bottom is for mixing salt. The plumbing between the cans has a tee off it to a separate valve so I can fill the ATO container.
 
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Hectaka

Hectaka

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I believe I saw others recommend a closed cell neoprene mat, like a yoga mat. But they specified closed cell. Steve from SCA is usually very responsive so I would think he will get back to you soon.

The stuff between the acrylic and glass overflow I would think is some kind of carbonate build up. If it’s really far down you could try to straighten a metal clothes hanger to scrape it loose.

I had no luck in finding vertical storage containers so ended up going with two 44 gallon brute cans. I built a stand so they could be stacked on top of each other and plumbed with uniseals and ball valves. The top can is for RODI and the bottom is for mixing salt. The plumbing between the cans has a tee off it to a separate valve so I can fill the ATO container.
I will give the clothes hanger a try to at least get some of it out. I'll have to look up some yoga mats to see what I can find that's a good idea.

For the tanks, I found some horizontal ones at a local farm supply store (bomgarrs) but I prefer a vertical column one that i found online about 45 minutes away the only problem is they only have 1. Going to keep my eyes open because I'd like to plumb them next to each other and maybe up into a closet right above it so I can transfer water to the main floor without carrying it up the stairs.
 
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Hectaka

Hectaka

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I ended up having to order the water storage tanks so those will take 4-5 weeks to be ready for pick up.

The weather is finally starting to improve here so I'll be able to take the sump and plumbing outside to get them cleaned off from all the crusty bits they're covered in.

I'm still debating which skimmer to use and trying to find a couple good titanium heaters as they seem to be hard to find currently. I'll have to drive about 1.5 hours to find a better "local" store to figure out dry rock since the one in my town doesn't have any.
 
Aquashella
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Hectaka

Hectaka

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I got delayed on the cleaning slightly by some friends who needed help putting up a fence so that's still on going.

I have a few things I'm currently considering how to handle. The used package I bought my tank in came with a Sapphire 39 sump and a giesemann 8 bulb T5 light. My original rough plan was to use a trigger platinum sump for the built in roller mat and LED lights for their compactness and energy efficiency.

Any thoughts on which would be better? I'm leaning towards trying to sell these items and purchasing the items I originally wanted but I'm open to suggestions.
 

NabberNate

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Same tank here and same brute over under setup. I would get 2 600W heater and use one as sump backup. My tank is in my basement which is usually 63 degrees and I can't move the needle past 73 degrees with one 300w. Two 300's might get you in the right range but if one goes out it might be too cold. I am cycling currently and need to get another heater. I am a proponent of planning for equipment failure.

Glad you are on your way!
 
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Hectaka

Hectaka

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Same tank here and same brute over under setup. I would get 2 600W heater and use one as sump backup. My tank is in my basement which is usually 63 degrees and I can't move the needle past 73 degrees with one 300w. Two 300's might get you in the right range but if one goes out it might be too cold. I am cycling currently and need to get another heater. I am a proponent of planning for equipment failure.

Glad you are on your way!
I ended up ordering 2 vertical water storage tanks from Norwesco. Actually going to pick them up tomorrow.

Thanks for the suggestion on heaters, I haven't got any yet and was planning on doing at least 2 so there's a back up. So when I do get them I'll make sure to consider the higher wattage.

I just got a cheap submersible pump in, after it was delayed getting delivered, so I plan on doing a leak test of the tank and sump the weekend.

I'm leaning towards trying to sell the sapphire sump and T5 light fixtures so if anyone's interested keep your eyes out since I plan on posting them this weekend as well.
 
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Hectaka

Hectaka

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About to head out on a vacation out east, one night will be a few blocks from the South Carolina Aquarium so definitely going to be checking that out. I plan on getting the leak test done as soon as possible when I get back to get this build back going.

Another main project is the plumbing of the mixing station. I've seen some really nice setups in different posts in here but most are hard to make out the more intricate details. Things like float switches or ways to prevent overflowing the containers. I'm also curious if anyone has plumbed two containers together plus an extra pipe run upstairs so carrying buckets is limited?
 
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