My new 800g+ pentagon FOWLR tank

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srcleary

srcleary

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UDATE: This week I took a break from my wall sections and worked on my columns. I haven't completely decided what to do with all the columns yet (I will have at least 20).

One of my goals in doing a theme aquascape is to make sure I have plenty of spaces for fish to hide but also in places I can view them. In my temp 125g I have a large pile of live rock and it is easy for the residents to find the favorite crevice or overhang. With the recreation of Palmyra I am trying to be creative and incorporate spaces for the fish. One my first set of columns (4) I made them hollow (with 2" PCV) to create hideaways for the eels. I have not decided on two or three eels yet. I plan on sticking with the Banana Eels and hoping two of them may share the same column, at least when they are smaller.

For my next set of columns (pictured here) I am making a crypt of sorts (although I don't want them to die in there! LOL). This will provide a hiding place for the fish and it also works great to keep my columns together. The inside dimension is about 6" x 6". Obviously not good for the larger fish abut great for any smaller ones.

The images are work in progress and I have lots of detail work to add. I will definitely make one more of these and they will be placed in the two end corners of the pentagon shape. They will also help hide the returns for my closed looped section.

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srcleary

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This week I worked on the columns (see previous post) and placed one of my "swim-through" columns in my temp tank to see how it would look and work. Again this is just for testing and will go into the DT later this summer.

Picture #1: I decided to add two more levels to the four column structure to add more places for the fish to hide. While not as good as a mound of live rock, it does offer somewhat of some hiding spaces. I am done gluing this section and now it just needs final finishing. This section will go over one of my closed loop returns and help hide it. I have to make another section to match this one for the other side of the tank. It was a LOT more work than I estimated and it weights over 80lbs. (I filled the columns with sand to prevent any air pockets.)

Picture #2, #3 & #4: I had previously made some hollow columns that will lay on the sand and serve as caves and swim throughs for my eels (three Banana Morays). I took one I had finished and cut it in half (to give a look of it breaking when it would have fallen to the sand) and put it in my temporary tank to see how it would look and how the eels might like. The eel I have had the longest "Rio" seems to enjoy swimming in and out of them. The other two are still a bit shy and stay in the rock work. In picture #2 you can see my Crosshatch's photobomb. :)

NOTE: I had a bit of an issue with the eels when I added the second two. I wanted to add all three at the same time, but two didn't come in until over a month later. (They are HARD to get). So when I added them, "Rio" went after both of them. The larger one fought back, but the smaller one took a real beating. His head was bit and I was pretty concerned. However they seem to be doing much better now. Rio has actually made friends with the larger one and and the smaller one seems to stick up for himself now. In the video link below he is on the left while Rio is in the column.

Rio and Tiago sparring

I am traveling next week, but more coming soon. I have ordered my sumps (2) and water tanks for my RODI and mixing station. Thanks for following along.

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tamanning

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UPDATE: I have decided to go with Miracle Aquariums. Derek seems great and I am confident that it is the right choice for me. It will be about 12 weeks before my tank arrives so there is plenty of time to build out all the equipment and the aquascaping.

The aquascape is very important to me as it is going in my office as a show piece and my agency does lots of creative work. My inspiration, as mentioned previously, is coming from the ruins of Palmyra. (image attached)

I have purchased some Marco rock and I've been cutting the shapes into bricks to use for the structure. (images attached) I will be incorporating some swim throughs and caves.

I have also been working on the first set of columns. These will stacked on the sand bed (as if they had fallen over) and the core is 2" black PVC which will also serve as swim throughs for my hopeful pair of Yellow Canary Morays. We sanded the PVC and started gluing coarse Aragonite sand to it. We are building up three layers and then will add some finer sand, leaving some ares of the coarse sand to simulate the decay. (pictures attached) We will also be adding the top square section. I purchased a 2" diamond hole saw today and looking forward to seeing if I can successfully drill the Marco rock to match the PVC.

I am also looking to go with a black sand bed.

Steve
Very creative. I'm really loving the sand on the pvc idea.
 
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Really incredible aquascaping ideas coming to life here, can’t wait to see it up and running. Absolutely love the trigger fish also. Any updates @srcleary?
 
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Really incredible aquascaping ideas coming to life here, can’t wait to see it up and running. Absolutely love the trigger fish also. Any updates @srcleary?
Sorry for the long silence on this thread. Here is a brief update...

The tank is still not shipped. It's a massive build and it supposed to be in crating. It's a beast and we had to actually customizes the crate as I have to turn it on its side to get it between two sliding doors.

I have two Leviathan sumps I am going to customize a bit. All the equipment is external to the sump. And my Reef Octopus 8000SRO skimmer just came in. It is awesome! And massive. 36" tall.

I have started working on the plumbing plan and external pumps (5) I will need. I will have four overflows with eight returns and two closed loop systems. Will be moving lots of water. Looking at ReeFlo pumps.

I just wired my ceiling for three Kessil AP9X which I already have them and want to install in the next two weeks. We also had to lay some tile down over the wood floor. Used black granite.

I picked up a slightly used Apex and Trident system. We just hooked up our RODI and finally making our own water! We have four 250g tanks. We use two for the RODI and 2 for Salt. We can make up to 200g a day so we should be fine in that department. With lots of messy feeders I am a fan of frequent water changes.

I've been researching UV lights and believe I found the one that will work best. Although not sure where it will fit in the stand!

So I am almost there on the equipment side. Going to have to purchase lots of PVC and valves. Can't believe how expensive the valves are.

On the aquascape I enlisted the help of my facilities manager to help with the columns. I had built 8 and needed 14 more! I am also adding more "shelves" to the columns to provide a bit of hiding without blocking too much flow.

We also found we can glue up some cool formations with all the scrape Marco Rock we have which can make cool hiding areas for smaller fish. But I really can't keep any too small as the eels will eat them!

I have already gone through well over a gallon of super-glue and hundreds of pounds of Marco Rock.

I have collected 22 specimens to go into the tank so far. They are now in three different tanks and I will have to figure out the order of adding them. We have over 300g of holding tanks now.

My fish wish list consists of Triggers - Tangs - Angels - Wrasses with Eels, a Porcupine Puffer and some CUC to keep the sand clean. So far I have collected...

8 TRIGGGERS
Pair of Crosshatch - 8"
Linespot - 5"
Niger - 5"
Golden Heart - 3.5"
Lunula - 4"
Clown - juvi
Picasso - juvi

3 TANGS
Blonde Naso - 6" male
Gem - 2.5"
African Powder Blue - 4"

6 ANGELS
Pair of Emperor - juvi & 7"
Majestic - 5"
Pair of Scribbled - 2.5 - 3.5"
Goldflake - 2.5"

WRASSE
Dragon - 3"

3 EELS
Banana Morays - 10" - 12"

CUC
Diamond Goby - 3"

I have another half dozen or so fish on the list. And obviously it will take a while to add them all to the display and some I have to grow out. And of course I do not know which may get too aggressive.

I now have a goal to have fish in the tank before Christmas!

Steve
 
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I received these images from Derek (Miracles) today. He said tank ships next week! The second image shows the glass covers. He told me they weight like 60 lbs! Not a big update but excited to share. :cool:

It's hard to see the size but the tank from furthest point to furthest point is 10'. It stands 78" tall.
The overflows will be hidden in the center columns. This creates 360 degree viewing. You will see in the third image the granite base we made and that the tank is viewable from my lobby, conference room and warehouse. I left about 16" of walking (service) room around the entire tank.

Tank 1.jpg
Tank 2.jpg


Tank Floor.jpg
 
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Suzan

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What an incredible build! You must be so excited to be taking delivery of the tank much sooner than expected. I can't wait to see your vision come to fruition. You are so talented!

I really like the tank cover solution. I have a Planet rimless and I struggle with evaporation. It's such a pain to have to top off every few days. I have a tacky looking piece of acrylic I bought from Home Depot that I use as a temporary fix, but I would love something like this.
 
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Dude that is so exciting! perfect space it;s gonna look amazing there.
only prob. I see is ppl on the conference room is gonna be spacing out looking at the fish tank...haha I know I would

some day i'll have a large FOWLR too.
Ha. No one ever pays attention to my presentations anyway. LOL
 
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What an incredible build! You must be so excited to be taking delivery of the tank much sooner than expected. I can't wait to see your vision come to fruition. You are so talented!

I really like the tank cover solution. I have a Planet rimless and I struggle with evaporation. It's such a pain to have to top off every few days. I have a tacky looking piece of acrylic I bought from Home Depot that I use as a temporary fix, but I would love something like this.
We have another tank with a lexan wire top. I actually love it but yes evaporation is an issue. We added an Auto Top Off. Wasn't crazy expensive and easy to set up. We will have one on this tank as well. I bought my last one from Dallas North used for 60% off.
 
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TANK ON ITS WAY!

The tank shipped today from Miracles. Thank you Derek!

It should arrive in Dallas this Friday. The image is from Miracles before crating. We are having to rent a forklift with extenders and remove a glass wall to get it in place.

I taped out the tank on my warehouse floor to start looking at how the aquascape will fit. To the left you will see one structure that will cover a closed loop intake. I will have a similar one on the right side.

The columns laying down in front are hollow for the eels. The structures behind them are the wall sections I am building based on the ruins of Palmyra. They are about 1/2 done, but there is only one of three pieces in the images. The final section is nearly 3' tall.

In the back I am playing around with the columns. These are to be used in place of a wall of live rock. I will add some sections to the columns for fish to hide in and obviously this is a good place for fish to get away from a bully and to break a sight line. :)

I call this back area the column jungle. I am trying to strike a balance between being able to see the fish and giving them places to feel safe. The tank is viewable from all sides so that will help. Also we will do all the feeding in the front and that will help keep the fish forward and out in the open when people approach the tank.

One thing I do not like about some theme based aquaecapes is the fact that fish don't have good hiding places. My temp tanks all have live rock in them and the fish love it. But using the structures instead of the live rock, I still want to create swim throughs and and places for them to feel safe without obstructing too much of the view. I guess it's just a balance. And being a fish only tank, it will have a decent number of specimens.

I will also create some smaller structures that will sit on the sand for smaller fish to hide. Although we have a 3"+ rule before fish can be added because of the eels.

Anyway, work in progress! This week we hope to hang up the lights before the tank arrives. I also have lots more equipment to order. So it will be awhile before it sees any fish and that is fine because I want to observe some of the newer arrivals for another month anyway before considering them for the display.

I have 22 specimens so far and some need to grow out before the can go into the tank. I also have 2 more juvi angels on order. I am looking to get another trigger, tang, puffer, some more gobies and a couple wrasses and that will complete the tank. I will take my time adding them but all the fish will have been well quarantined as my temp tanks will freeze up as I move some of the fish into he display. We are now debating on who should go first!

I am sure they will enjoy the new space!!!

Tank .jpg
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srcleary

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The tank supposed to arrive tomorrow!

Yesterday we hung up our lights. 5 Kessil AP9X. It was a bit more of a chore than I expected, not because they are hard to hang up, but because of the decision on where to put them for maximum lighting and me changing my mind about 5 times!

Here was my dilemma. The aquascape is fairly large. I have 21 - 27" columns I made from 3" PVC, sand and Marco rock. Four of these are hollow and will lay on the sand bed for the eels.

I am grouping 9 of the columns together toward the back. This basically replaces would would normally be a wall of live rock. It will provide lots of hiding places and interesting swim throughs.

While I love the lock of NSA I worry about ample places for fish to hide and retreat to. I currently have live rock in my three temporary tanks and it is obvious the fish love to find their own space to call home. So I decided to mimic that experience with my columns. And because there will be lots of shadows, there was not a lot of need to put much lighting over that area.

You can see on the first image we have started to glue the Marco rock to the columns to create a similar effect as a rock wall would have. The big benefit is that we can see into the rock structures and they can be moved if need be. I am building three sets using three columns each.

The front of the tank is fairly open. This is the main viewing area and where I will feed. This is also the best open swimming area for the larger tank mates.

So I ended up putting four lights across the front. They are spaced about 20" apart and the total width of the tank is 10'. This should give plenty of light over the main section of the tank.

I will have to determine how high they hang above the tank after the tank is in place and filled. I still deciding on what color sand and either way want good light penetration.

I placed the 5th light over the back triangular section. Again I worry this area may not be as bright but there is a lot of structure in the back that would great lots of shadows anyway. I also have my four "tower" overflows toward the back. And I thought I could come back with some single pendant lights if need be.

I included two images. One hanging the lights with my office lights on. And the final image is with my office lights off and the 5 Kessils on. You can see on the black floor, it gets pretty bright. Will obviously be different when it is shining through water, but it was pretty cool to see.

More coming this week!

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lefkonj

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Really interesting build. For a tank that size I love the large tangs, triggers, wrasses puffers and eels you have already listed out.

A nice large school of anthias would be cool but not sure how long that would survive with all those other larger fish.
 
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Really interesting build. For a tank that size I love the large tangs, triggers, wrasses puffers and eels you have already listed out.

A nice large school of anthias would be cool but not sure how long that would survive with all those other larger fish.
I've that about some schooling fish. Keep going back and forth on the idea. Or I've considered a small group of purple tangs but realize it would be a potential problem down the road.
 
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