My first reef tank! 65g.

souciemm

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Tank is up!

Went a little over the budget so I couldn't pick up rock. I did end up picking up an RODI unit, I think mine is called Barracuda. I still need to figure it out, but I plan on adding water on Tuesday. all the plumbing went smoothly (I hope).

The stand is a little too small for the tank, and it doesn't fit completely into the top opening and is sitting on the sides. I think it'll be okay because this is how it was in the store, but could be a problem when I get water in it.

also, I forgot to buy a thermometer, so if anyone has the link to a decent one ill need to order it.

Really exited to join the salty side!
What is holding up the edges of the tank? If the edges are just being supported by the trim piece around the top I wouldn't trust it to hold 500lbs. Those trim pieces are usually just there for looks to cover up the bottom trim of the tank. They're probably just tacked to the actual support structure and not meant to support weight.

Its tough to tell without looking at the stand, and I could definitely be wrong, just please be careful!

Edit: I looked at some pictures and it looks like those aqueon stands might designed to hold the weight like that.
 
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thomas_neil

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My LFS recommended the black bucket, so I just went with that. Unfortunately, I already bought the heater so I can’t switch it out for a controlled one

You can get standalone controllers, they're more accurate than the ones you stick to the glass. If you're on a budget, I'd get 2 of those little stick-on thermometers just for redundancy.
 
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j.speaks

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What is holding up the edges of the tank? If the edges are just being supported by the trim piece around the top I wouldn't trust it to hold 500lbs. Those trim pieces are usually just there for looks to cover up the bottom trim of the tank. They're probably just tacked to the actual support structure and not meant to support weight.

Its tough to tell without looking at the stand, and I could definitely be wrong, just please be careful!

Edit: I looked at some pictures and it looks like those aqueon stands might designed to hold the weight like that.

it is resting on the trim. Is there any way I could just add support? The tank is put together through staples and glue so I’m kind of nervous
 

souciemm

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it is resting on the trim. Is there any way I could just add support? The tank is put together through staples and glue so I’m kind of nervous
I would be nervous too (even when the stand is bullet proof I get nervous putting water in a tank the first time). I dont think that I'd be qualified to tell you how to fix it or if its safe or not. I did go back and look at some more pictures of what looks to be that stand for sale online. In those pictures it appears that the tank is resting on the edges of what I called trim so it may be designed that way. Maybe someone else will chime in that knows for sure if it's supposed to sit on top inside? You could double check at the store where you bought it too, wouldn't hurt to ask.
 
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j.speaks

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Hello everyone!

Tank is almost full. I had to stop filling for the day but ill finish up and add salt on friday.

for the salt, I was planning on just adding it to the tank and letting the flow mix it. For the sand, I have the CaribSea Ocean direct Caribbean live sand, which says no rinsing. I’ve scoured r2r and it’s pretty much split between people telling me to rinse and people telling me not to. What should I do?

Last thing: I want to maybe but my light online. Does anyone have any recommendations for a 65g? Has to be pretty cost efficient as I’m on a budget and I plan to keep mostly softies and maybe a few lps further down the line.

Exited to be officially joining the salty side!
 

thomas_neil

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Hello everyone!

Tank is almost full. I had to stop filling for the day but ill finish up and add salt on friday.

for the salt, I was planning on just adding it to the tank and letting the flow mix it. For the sand, I have the CaribSea Ocean direct Caribbean live sand, which says no rinsing. I’ve scoured r2r and it’s pretty much split between people telling me to rinse and people telling me not to. What should I do?

Last thing: I want to maybe but my light online. Does anyone have any recommendations for a 65g? Has to be pretty cost efficient as I’m on a budget and I plan to keep mostly softies and maybe a few lps further down the line.

Exited to be officially joining the salty side!
Yeah you can mix the salt in the tank, do it before you add any rock or sand though with a power head near the bottom of the tank. Leave the water level a little low though for displacement when you add sand and rock.

If its live sand don't rinse it, it has beneficial bacteria in it, make sure to add the water that's in the bag, just dump everything in.

What's your budget for lighting? Are you wanting something controllable or just have it turn on and off with a timer? Light bars are probably going to be your best bet.
 

thomas_neil

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I like these for simplicity for just on and off. I would recommend 2 for 24" wide.


Lighting is the most expensive part of reefing, but also the most important part for the health of the corals.

1699536918931.png
 
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j.speaks

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maybe something a little more pricey would be okay. especially if i could snag one on black Friday. controllable would be nice, just nothing extreme. id say my budget for lighting is around 500 -600 dollars. a little higher or lower would be fine.
 

thomas_neil

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maybe something a little more pricey would be okay. especially if i could snag one on black Friday. controllable would be nice, just nothing extreme. id say my budget for lighting is around 500 -600 dollars. a little higher or lower would be fine.
Thats a decent budget for that size tank. You could go with 2 quanta pros as stated above, but these are not controllable, just on and off.

You could also go with 2 AI Blades, they are fairly new so I'm not sure on reliability/controllability, but I do know they are controllable. Could look at posts on here about them.

Could also do 2 AI primes but might get shading as coral grow in and will end up needing to supplement with a light bar in the future.


Can also do some research on here. They offer a ton of quality stuff, and usually have reviews, and video reviews on what they think about the product.
 

thomas_neil

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Hello everyone!

Tank is almost full. I had to stop filling for the day but ill finish up and add salt on friday.

for the salt, I was planning on just adding it to the tank and letting the flow mix it. For the sand, I have the CaribSea Ocean direct Caribbean live sand, which says no rinsing. I’ve scoured r2r and it’s pretty much split between people telling me to rinse and people telling me not to. What should I do?

Last thing: I want to maybe but my light online. Does anyone have any recommendations for a 65g? Has to be pretty cost efficient as I’m on a budget and I plan to keep mostly softies and maybe a few lps further down the line.

Exited to be officially joining the salty side!
How did the rest of the fill up go? One thing I forgot to mention, get a good refractometer for salinity, don't use those floating ones, they're not very accurate. I think refractometers are like $20.
 
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j.speaks

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How did the rest of the fill up go? One thing I forgot to mention, get a good refractometer for salinity, don't use those floating ones, they're not very accurate. I think refractometers are like $20.

Fill went pretty good, have one small drip in one of the adapters but ordered some aquarium putty for it. I plan on adding salt sometime this weekend and maybe sand if I get to it.
 
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j.speaks

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Hello!

I've been busy with school and other things so I haven't quite found the time to add salt.

That adapter drip is becoming annoying though... It is on the part connecting the return hose from the pump and the PVC tube going up and out of my overflow, so the connector is screwed into the bottom of the overflow.

The first time I had put the putty on I didn't really think to turn off the pump, so water was flowing and I think that caused the leak to seep though the putty before it could harden completely. This time around, the pump is off and the putty is currently setting. (hopefully). I'm just worried that the 500 pounds of water pressure are going to somehow force the leak again, no matter what kind of putty I use!

Does anyone have any products/solutions for this? All the fittings on the connection point are as tight as they're going to be, so i'm thinking some kind of outside solution.
 
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j.speaks

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Update:

I added salt about 2 weeks ago. I'm not too proud of this but somehow, I miscalculated so bad that my salinity was at about 45 ppm.

At first I thought my hydrometer was broken, so I ordered a refractometer which showed me the same result. it was a long process of draining and filling half the tank back up but when I get home today I plan on fixing the salinity for good. On the bright side, I have a refractometer now!

For lighting I purchased an AI blade grow 30 inch on a black friday sale. I've looked a lot into the light and think that it is a good fit for my tank, which I plan to keep mostly softies with maybe a few easy lps down the road. also, I like that if I ever want to upgrade, I can just add another light because I will have space.

An issue I have run into is that I don't really know how to mount the light. My tank seems odd in that it is rimmed, but came with two glass lids that fit pretty snugly

1701090972598.png


This leaves pretty much no space on the sides for any of the arm mounts that the blade comes with. hanging wouldn't be ideal, but is a last resort option. I ordered the elevated tank mount just because it was cheap and I want to test it out. are there any mounts that are compatible with the blade that look like they would work with my tank?

Once I get salinity in check my plan is to put sand in as soon as I can to start the cycle. each day I get closer and closer to my first fish!

things left to do:
- add sand
- cycle tank
- buy powerhead
- buy live rock and figure out the scape
 

thomas_neil

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Update:

I added salt about 2 weeks ago. I'm not too proud of this but somehow, I miscalculated so bad that my salinity was at about 45 ppm.

At first I thought my hydrometer was broken, so I ordered a refractometer which showed me the same result. it was a long process of draining and filling half the tank back up but when I get home today I plan on fixing the salinity for good. On the bright side, I have a refractometer now!

For lighting I purchased an AI blade grow 30 inch on a black friday sale. I've looked a lot into the light and think that it is a good fit for my tank, which I plan to keep mostly softies with maybe a few easy lps down the road. also, I like that if I ever want to upgrade, I can just add another light because I will have space.

An issue I have run into is that I don't really know how to mount the light. My tank seems odd in that it is rimmed, but came with two glass lids that fit pretty snugly

1701090972598.png


This leaves pretty much no space on the sides for any of the arm mounts that the blade comes with. hanging wouldn't be ideal, but is a last resort option. I ordered the elevated tank mount just because it was cheap and I want to test it out. are there any mounts that are compatible with the blade that look like they would work with my tank?

Once I get salinity in check my plan is to put sand in as soon as I can to start the cycle. each day I get closer and closer to my first fish!

things left to do:
- add sand
- cycle tank
- buy powerhead
- buy live rock and figure out the scape
If the tank mounts don't work or fit the tank, you could use shelf mounts from your local hardware store to hang the light over the tank. They're not the prettiest set up but I've seen a lot of people do this.


Saves you from having to hang it from the ceiling.

To get the salinity down you could drain some water out of the tank and just add fresh water as needed. Keep the water you drain out for water changes, just dilute with fresh water to get proper salinity.
 
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j.speaks

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Forgot to mention this earlier- but my pump seems to be just ever so slightly too powerful for my tank.

I have an Sicce Syncra Pro and yes, it’s on the lowest setting. Whenever I tune my pump on the water lever of the pump chamber goes down very slowly, but faster than I would think evaporation would take it. It just pumps water ever so slightly faster than my overflow can put water back into the chamber.

Is there any way that I can speed up my filtration and/or the overflow? If I can get the speed to higher than the pump I can adjust it to a higher setting. Here is a video of my setup.
 

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j.speaks

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Forgot to mention this earlier- but my pump seems to be just ever so slightly too powerful for my tank.

I have an Sicce Syncra Pro and yes, it’s on the lowest setting. Whenever I tune my pump on the water lever of the pump chamber goes down very slowly, but faster than I would think evaporation would take it. It just pumps water ever so slightly faster than my overflow can put water back into the chamber.

Is there any way that I can speed up my filtration and/or the overflow? If I can get the speed to higher than the pump I can adjust it to a higher setting. Here is a video of my setup.
@thomas_neil
 

thomas_neil

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It looks like you have a Durso overflow? There's not really a lot of tuning you can do with those besides adjusting pump speed.

You could try hard piping your drain line to the sump to help it flow easier to the inlet. That flexible line with the big loop in it is probably preventing water from flowing smoothly to the sump.
 
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j.speaks

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Well, it’s been a while but the tank is fully up and running!

Picked up 50lbs of live rock from my lfs yesterday. Doing the scape was way more fun than I expected and I really like how it came out!

All parameters are stable, and making the trip to get my first fish on Wednesday.

My lfs recommended that I did a fish in cycle, because I already have a lot of bacteria, just missing the ammonia spike. Plan is to get two clowns and some hermit crabs, and maybe another hardy fish.

Super exited that this project is finally coming along!

IMG_1858.jpeg IMG_1859.jpeg IMG_1860.jpeg
 

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Nice aquascape! 65 gal is great to start with. I'm not a big fan of the fish in cycle but to each their own. looking forward to seeing how it come out!
 

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