My Office Waterbox Marine X 35.1 Cube Build

jhuntstl

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I've been poking around at the idea of a scrubber myself. There's some pretty cheap DIY options out there. I bookmarked this Jorvert Soda Lime if I ever do try. $22 shipped, IIRC.

Keep us updated on it's efficacy and monthly cost for media. Which media are you using? The recirculating mods seems to be a contentious subject. Some people claim it's bad practice, while I'm sure the rest are just happy to save some cash.
 
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Gedxin

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Both of my clownfish are now showing white stringy poop. The female has been for about 10 days and I just noticed the male with it today. Neither fish is showing any signs of stress or troubles eating. I do feed frozen mysis shrimp every day, so this could absolutely just be a diet problem, but for every diet potential post there are twice as many PARASITES posts with the same issue. I've decided it's probably best to treat them assuming it's parasites. I also plan to get 2 more fish end of August, so I need them healthy. So I set up a hospital tank (previous coral QT) and dosed Fritz Paracleanse. It's a 5 day process. Took me 30 minutes to get Juniper and another 2 hours to get Ash out of my DT. Exhausting and I angered a few coral in the process. They're not eating in the hospital, but I hope it's just stress from the move. Crossing fingers this works.

After the hospital setup I transferred the majority of my new corals to their permanent (hopefully) locations. I broke the muy Verde birdsnest while cutting the plug (sigh), but I think I may have just ended up fragging it (so I glued down both, hah) we'll see. Otherwise, I'm super happy with how things are looking!

20210731_165515.jpg 20210731_170225.jpg
 
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Gedxin

Gedxin

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We've got coralline growing on the glass/power head! I know it can become a huge problem for people (scrape scrape scraping), but it's exciting to see a clear 'reef' indicator is growing in my <1mo tank! Good indications I've got decent parameters!

Tons of new polyps on all of my Zoas. Excited for my garden to continue growing!

Still deciding on where to put my aussie lord and xenia. This xenia is stressing me out, so I may just end up placing it on a new rock in the sand. It was $7, so I don't feel bad if I need to get rid of it, but we'll see if it ends up being the weed its known for.

Short video clip of the tank for any interest.

 

jhuntstl

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Wow! That is some crazy fast coralline and polyp growth. I bet your snails played a big part spreading it around on their encrusted shells. Tank is looking very clean too. Are there still diatoms? What are your parameters? Excited for your success!
 
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Gedxin

Gedxin

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Wow! That is some crazy fast coralline and polyp growth. I bet your snails played a big part spreading it around on their encrusted shells. Tank is looking very clean too. Are there still diatoms? What are your parameters? Excited for your success!

Yup, I definitely attribute the coralline to my snails and keeping the frag plugs from my LFS purchase (I did ASK for snails with coralline on them :D). It could have gone south with pests but I think I lucked out!

Definitely still diatoms but the hermit crabs are doing WORK on the sand bed. The snails are taking care of the rock. I have to scrape the glass of algae every 1.5-2 days or it's noticeably blurry. I also scraped a decent amount of hair algae off of the back wall today. First real indications of 'hair' algae anywhere in the tank.

Params:
Salinity 1.026 (mostly, but sometimes 1.025)
pH 8-8.2 (yay CO2 scrubber)
Calcium 440
Magnesium 1360 (need to test this again)
Phosphate 0.04
Nitrate 5-10ppm
Alk 8.1 (swinging from 7.8-8.2, trying to keep around 8.) I'm currently dosing about 3ml soda ash once every 4-5 days.
 
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A few small updates.

I installed a Reef Pi controller and added a pH probe yesterday. Somewhat difficult to set up due to not really having the perfect documentation for all pieces of the puzzle, but we're finally running. But it's pretty cheap to do all things considered (roughly $100.) Here's a small screenshot of a day's worth of pH swing (UI is my Home Assistant API'ing to my Reef Pi.)
Screen Shot 2021-08-04 at 2.49.57 PM.png


The pH noticeably goes UP when I turn on the skimmer (it drops in the evening because I have it off for ~6 hours each night.) Yay for a CO2 scrubber!

I royally ticked off my Duncan today by removing him from the frag plug. I got ambitious watching a few videos of people just popping their LPS' off of their plugs. Turns out it did not just 'pop' off like I had seen. Took a good amount of wrangling and had to use a scalper to apply leverage. He's angry, so so angry. Hopefully recovers without issue.

I'm debating on removing my top left rock in favor of something much smaller. My scape lends itself better to things that prefer higher flow and higher light. I'm not sure I want that in the tank, so I'm doing additional research on what corals I must have. Spoilers: Euphyllia Hammers and/or Torches are on this list, and I don't think they'd appreciate the current scape.
 
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What all did you purchase for your reefpi? I've been looking into grabbing a simple ph monitor, but reefpi sounds like it could be a better option.

You'll want to get a Pi Zero with the GPIO header installed (can solder yourself or find a seller with it pre-installed) Guide here: https://dronebotworkshop.com/soldering-raspberry-pi-zero-gpio/#1

Then you'll want to grab a pH circuit (I bought mine from https://www.robo-tank.ca/Reef-pi-DIY-Hardware/Robo-Tank-Isolated-pH-Circuit-Arduino-PI (robsworld78 is actually a member here on R2R .) Grab a pH probe, I used this .Install reef-pi on your Pi Zero (guide here https://learn.adafruit.com/reef-pi-installation-and-configuration/raspberry-pi-configuration.) Add your pH Circuit connections, in Reef Pi: add the pH driver, then the ph Connector, then add the pH monitor. Done! Happy to help with anything you need as I literally did all this just this week. :D
 
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Gedxin

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Looks very interesting. Thank you for all the links. Do you intend to expand your reefpi setup? I wouldn't mind an extra temp control redundancy behind my Ranco. Or an extra float switch to prevent ATO failure.
Yup, I've got a temp prob I'm planning to install, but am still missing one part. My Inkbird wifi controller does not have any way to interface with my smart home solution. A float monitor connected to a power switch would be great too! I hadn't planned on installing that but now that I see you mention, it'd absolutely be a worthwhile addition to prevent a flood. Good plan!
 

jhuntstl

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Yup, I've got a temp prob I'm planning to install, but am still missing one part. My Inkbird wifi controller does not have any way to interface with my smart home solution. A float monitor connected to a power switch would be great too! I hadn't planned on installing that but now that I see you mention, it'd absolutely be a worthwhile addition to prevent a flood. Good plan!
Ya I think multiple redundancies on ATOs and heaters is well worth it. Dosers are up there too, they can wipe out a tank easily. I'd be curious if reefpi could offer any protection to my Kamoer doser or if I'd have to get one of the basic BRS on/off dosers. You've given me a lot to research!
 
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My first encounter with Aiptasia!

The Office No GIF


So during one of my many stares at my tank, I was inspecting some of the coral bases a bit more than usual and what do my eyes reveal? AIPTASIA! TWO little baby Aiptasia. Ugh. It's definitely from WWC too (glare @WWC), but whatcha gonna do, them's the luck of the draw.
aiptasia_aug2021.jpg



Thankfully I prepared for this in advance and whipped out my F Aiptasia box! You shall not defeat this newbie reefer Aiptasia. It's a bit stressful to apply, the stuff comes out FAST and it kind of just slops off the piece you're trying to attach to. I think I did alright though and I believe successfully covered the two little babies without affecting my Goniopora. Time will tell.

aiptasia-defeated_aug2021.jpg


In other news, my Alkalinity it dropping FAST (relative to before.) I don't have appropriate day-to-day measurements yet but it seems like I'm going through .4-.7dKh a day. Good news I think, gobble up those elements my little corals!

In other other news, I woke up to my captain planet zoas knocked off their perch. A hermit crab was right next to them looking mighty suspect too. I quickly grabbed them, applied epoxy/glue (before they were just glued) and placed them in their spot. Not cool crabby, not cool.
 

jhuntstl

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Glad you spotted that aiptasia sooner than later!

What are you testing your ALK with? I don't double up on anything else, but for ALK I'm using a Hanna Checker and Salifert. Lately I've been seeing heavier ALK use and it's been nice to verify with another test kit before making changes to my doser.
 

BPC10001

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We were just talking about this with the Aiptasia! Sorry this happened to you.

One of the suggestions I got was to just glue over the spot where they are. That way they don't have a chance (if you miss with the AiptasiaX) to release any spores / split. Just watch it closely...they are a pain to deal with when they are that small
 
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Gedxin

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Glad you spotted that aiptasia sooner than later!

What are you testing your ALK with? I don't double up on anything else, but for ALK I'm using a Hanna Checker and Salifert. Lately I've been seeing heavier ALK use and it's been nice to verify with another test kit before making changes to my doser.
I'm testing ALK with a Hanna tester and then with a Red Sea (but Red Sea is only 0.5 accuracy, less ideal.)

We were just talking about this with the Aiptasia! Sorry this happened to you.

One of the suggestions I got was to just glue over the spot where they are. That way they don't have a chance (if you miss with the AiptasiaX) to release any spores / split. Just watch it closely...they are a pain to deal with when they are that small

Seriously, what weird timing. But also I should thank you because it made me do a much more thorough analysis of my coral. And guess what, today I found ANOTHER baby Aiptasia on my bi-color candy cane! Ugh. This does not bode well for my tank and I really hope more don't sprout up in other areas. :fingers-crossed:

In other news, it seems like I'm consuming ~0.4 ALK a day. That's only one day's worth of test and obviously Hanna can +- 0.2 either way. Today's ALK measurement was 6.9 though, so I'll be dosing (according to BRS calc) 19ml of liquid soda ash over the next 24hr of so. I'm only going to dose 9ml and test again tomorrow morning to see where we're at.
 
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Spotted what I believe to be bubble algae. Yet again coming from a WWC plug. So that's bristle worms, aiptasia, asterina starfish, and now bubble algae all encountered from one supplier. Based on how well liked WWC is around the community, I guess I expected better. But perhaps this is just par for the course with online shopping? I haven't encountered this with my LFS yet at least.

20210810_160104.jpg
 

jhuntstl

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Looks like bubble algae to me. Is WWC known for being pest free?

I think vendors often scrape off the undesirables before shipping. It's easy to be fooled by a clean frag plug. Dip away, but that pest algae is probably going to make an appearance unless you used peroxide.

Your best bet is to remove the frag plug, but that can be difficult with certain types of coral. I'm trying to follow this policy from now on, but it's easier with SPS.

I wouldn't worry about bristle worms, though. Some people add them intentionally and consider them a good part of the CUC. I had a near 2ft one in my tank from near a decade ago. Just don't let it eat enough to get that big. =)
 
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It's right at the base of that muy Verde birdsnest, so I may take your suggestion and try to pop the coral off the fragplug and throw away the rest. Worst case I break the coral and have to toss it but you can see to the left on the photo I already did that, so I've got a spare in the tank :)
 

How long does it take to you to get an inch of acropora growth? (on average)

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