New 46 gallon bowfront build!

PghReef

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Or should I say rebuild??

Some of you may remember my initial 46 build over on 3reef many years ago. Had a really nice mixed reef that did extremely well with minimal equipment. Was my first saltwater tank after many years of freshwater, but with the help from forum members and research I figured it out.

Unfortunately moving into a fixer upper the tank got put on the back burner and I ended up losing all my coral after a filter malfunction. For years I have been working on the house, had my first child, and waiting to start over again. Still have 2 clowns in a 29 gallon aptasia reef. They have thousands of anemones to choose from but still chose to lay eggs in the corner of the glass instead

Now my son is almost 3 and loves going to the pet stores to look at all things fish. Reminds me of how I got started in the hobby years ago with my dad always having a freshwater tank and taking weekend trips to the stores. I've been lurking around here the past year or so to see what I missed and what's new since I went dormant in the hobby. Unfortunately corals have gotten outrageous and I have no clue how I'm going to stock my tank up again. Most of my old lfs closed but The Reef Gallery has just re-opened and I'm excited to see what kind of corals they start getting in!

Enough back story time for the build!

Tank is the original 46 gallon bowfront, I added some fresh silicone for extra support and leak tested in the garage, looks good to go! I ditched the old particle board stand and built my own. Pretty sure it could hold closer to the weight of a car but it is solid and will last for generations.

Equipment wise I have 3 vortech mp10 from the previous build, 2 have brand new wetsides. I upgraded the lighting from a quad bulb t5ho to dual kessil 360x with controller. Pretty excited about this as the colors always seemed to pop so much better with the LEDs at the lfs compared to the t5ho I had. I also decided to try the finnex hpg series heater, like that it has a separate temperature probe and control outside the tank. I am going to stick with a hob filter to use carbon and phosguard in as I did with the previous setup. I never did use a skimmer and found weekly 5-10 gallon water changes to be sufficient. I thought about ditching a hob filter all together but without a sump it's nice for surface agitation.

The rockwork is all pukani from brs with a couple tonga branch pieces. Half from the previous build that I bleach and vinager acid bathed and the other half new. Been cycling in a tub for the last 11 months with no light. Few pellets every now and then to feed the bacteria testing shows 0 across the board except for some phosphates, hence the plan for phosguard. Glad I purchased when I did since I know cant get any with the export bans.

Plan is for another mixed reef focused heavily on lps. I love euphyllia corals and will probably have a few hammer and frogspawns. Also want some bubble coral, trumpets, goniopora, and aveopora. Will add a few sps pieces as the system matures. Probably mostly stylophora and birdsnest coral but maybe a few acro or montipora as well.

Fish wise the clowns are going to be transferred. Also have a coral beauty angel to transfer. After that looking for some smaller stuff like wrasse and goby, maybe a hawkfish.

I started building the stand last winter but it got put on hold with summer as woodworking is a winter hobby for me. Summer is all about the outdoors and gardening with indoor projects consisting of on going maintenance only. I finished the stand earlier this winter and have finally stained and polyurethaned the entire thing. Been sitting complete in the basement to off gas some of those fumes before setting up upstairs. Took a little longer since I have 10+ coats of wipe on on the stand and 15 on the top. A little over kill but wanted to make sure itll stand up to saltwater.

Currently making rodi water to get this thing wet in the next week or 2. Have a 6 stage unit. I need to replace the carbon, sediment block, and di resin as it is changing color in 1 of the 2 canisters and it's all years old but the TDS meter still reads 0 so itll work for now. User tap water with my last build and never had major issues but decided to so it right this time.

This is still only a temporary build as I have a brand new drilled 90 gallon with stand in the basement. Just not ready to set it up yet.

Pictures to follow.
 
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PghReef

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The stand is solid wood and I traced my sons hand in the top under the poly. Itll sit under the tank itself but its something to show him and maybe pass on in the future.
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Also decided to add my tag under the door
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Have to put the pieces together, much easier to finish and carry with the top, bottom, and back off.
 

cancun

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The stand is solid wood and I traced my sons hand in the top under the poly. Itll sit under the tank itself but its something to show him and maybe pass on in the future.
154992056178057820192129181785.jpg

Also decided to add my tag under the door
15499207077819091317496981610150.jpg

15499207681055908604029422636082.jpg

Have to put the pieces together, much easier to finish and carry with the top, bottom, and back off.
Welcome back to the hobby!!!! That stand looks amazing! I can't wait to see how your build progresses! I just upgraded from a Innovative Marine SR 80 AIO tank to a Red Sea Reefer 750 XXL which is a 200 gallon. It was a lot of work....but so worth it! [emoji16]
 
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PghReef

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Welcome back to the hobby!!!! That stand looks amazing! I can't wait to see how your build progresses! I just upgraded from a Innovative Marine SR 80 AIO tank to a Red Sea Reefer 750 XXL which is a 200 gallon. It was a lot of work....but so worth it! [emoji16]
Those red sea series are beautiful. Is it 200 system or 200gallon DT? Can do a lot with that either way!
 
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PghReef

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It is a 160 gallon display with 40 gallon sump! Loving it so far! Your tank looks great from before! Can't wait to see it brought back to life! [emoji16]
Thanks! Do you have a build thread of your own?
 
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PghReef

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So the location I'm thinking for the tank has a single outlet controlled by a switch . The switch would be right next to the aquarium so if turned off accidently you would notice immediately but I still have concerns of the switch turning off and powering down the tank.

How much of a concern should this be? I figure with a low tech tank the effects should be minimal. Lights and heater should not cause a problem as my house is 72. The vortechs have a battery backup for flow if needed and Im thinking of getting a regular battery backup for the HOB filter. Future electrical needs would include dosing pumps but if they lost power for awhile itd take a long time before any harm could occur and I would notice the lights not coming on long in advance of this.

Should I attempt to rewire the outlet so only one of the 2 outlets is controlled by the switch or would battery backups be enough?

With regards to a backup the vortechs have the vortech backup. What battery backup should I use for the filter?
 

William DeCoursey

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Wow, fantastic looking stand. My son is 3 a well, daughter 1.5

I'm brand new to the hobby, but I'd do something about that switch and childproofing your setup in general. Just running vinegar to clean the tank, my son yanked off my temporary return setup. Thankfully, I was feet away. They both love tablets and turning things on and off. Honestly not sure how I will keep them away from all the controllers. Switch wiring really couldn't be easier. Turn off the power, unscrew the switch, twist the hot wires together with a wire nut. You can leave the grounds as is... even can leave the switch and casing in the wall. One less thing to fail.
 
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It's a great hobby to share with the family. Its what got me the in as well. My dad kept discus when I was about 4 or 5 and I still remember it. My fist tank was a hand me down from him. As for the light switch. Simple low tech solution might be a guard like this https://www.amazon.com/Light-Switch-Guard-Cover-Plates/dp/B078PPG44X/ref=asc_df_B078PPG44X/?tag=hyprod-20&linkCode=df0&hvadid=242041198988&hvpos=1o2&hvnetw=g&hvrand=7120485658538301700&hvpone=&hvptwo=&hvqmt=&hvdev=c&hvdvcmdl=&hvlocint=&hvlocphy=1024620&hvtargid=pla-403109062688&psc=1
 
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PghReef

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Wow, fantastic looking stand. My son is 3 a well, daughter 1.5

I'm brand new to the hobby, but I'd do something about that switch and childproofing your setup in general. Just running vinegar to clean the tank, my son yanked off my temporary return setup. Thankfully, I was feet away. They both love tablets and turning things on and off. Honestly not sure how I will keep them away from all the controllers. Switch wiring really couldn't be easier. Turn off the power, unscrew the switch, twist the hot wires together with a wire nut. You can leave the grounds as is... even can leave the switch and casing in the wall. One less thing to fail.
Thanks, having kids that enjoy the hobby too makes it that much more enjoyable to share and teach them. I'm not too worried about child proofing as everything will be located under the stand. The switch is up on the wall out of his reach but still makes me nervous, I was thinking about rewiring it so the one outlet is switch controlled and the other always hot.
 

William DeCoursey

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Maybe it's just my little guy, but he loves switches and the bigger the effect, the more he likes it. He'll climb up on things or get flyswatters or mop handles to turn them on and off.. lol.
 
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PghReef

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It's a great hobby to share with the family. Its what got me the in as well. My dad kept discus when I was about 4 or 5 and I still remember it. My fist tank was a hand me down from him. As for the light switch. Simple low tech solution might be a guard like this https://www.amazon.com/Light-Switch-Guard-Cover-Plates/dp/B078PPG44X/ref=asc_df_B078PPG44X/?tag=hyprod-20&linkCode=df0&hvadid=242041198988&hvpos=1o2&hvnetw=g&hvrand=7120485658538301700&hvpone=&hvptwo=&hvqmt=&hvdev=c&hvdvcmdl=&hvlocint=&hvlocphy=1024620&hvtargid=pla-403109062688&psc=1
Never thought of a switch guard but that's an awesome idea! I will probably go that route now since it would be so easy.

My dad has discus now when I was a kid it was all about the arrowana and shovelnose catfish. Used to hand feed them goldfish. I had a 10 gallon in my room by the time I was 5 and by high school it was a 55 gallon.
 
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PghReef

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Maybe it's just my little guy, but he loves switches and the bigger the effect, the more he likes it. He'll climb up on things or get flyswatters or mop handles to turn them on and off.. lol.
Omg I feel your pain. I call my little bugger the sour patch kid, like from the commercial. One minute they're destroying everything, the next they're sweet as pie
 
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PghReef

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Still slowly working towards setup. I did the final buff and clean on the stand and assembled the components. Used a rubber pad for the bottom to help self level the entire stand and tank and used a hidden push latch for the door.
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I'm rethinking placement, thinking the corner will make maintenance on the one back corner very difficult. Still have some time to determine final placement, making rodi water at the moment. Pretty sure I need new filters, even though it has 0 TDS it only makes like 30 gallons a day with 55-60 psi. Hoping to get it set up and wet this weekend
 
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PghReef

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Weekend was a success. I did move the tank so no switch to worry about. Set the tank up Saturday morning and by Sunday evening everything seemed good so I added a small frag of hammer coral that has coraline on its base. I just have the old t5ho fixture on for now since my kessil mounts are in the mail. Have to organize under the stand and all the wires as well.

Unfortunately always setbacks. The vortech battery backup is dead and seems to not be charging at all, let it charge over night and still nothing. It is like 5 years old so I'm not surprised. Also 1 of my 3 mp10s wont work, cant get the controller to do anything other than blink red. Idk if I need a new dryside or a new controller I'll have to contact echotech. Also the hob filter is loud as heck with a bad impeller so new one in the mail as well.
 
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Last picture is from today so much clearer, others from sunday where there was still some cloudiness from the sand.
Dont think I'll have much of a cycle since the rock was cycled in a tub for almost a year.
Salinity 1.026. PH 8.0 ALK 9 CA 420. Ammonia and nitrite 0 nitrate 5 and phosphates .16.
 
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PghReef

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Been busy with work so not too much progress lately. I have the vortechs mounted and set, although need to buy a new power supply so I can add the third one. Also have the new HOB filter on the tank with filter floss and carbon. I know some people do not like to run carbon 24/7 but I always found it to be beneficial. Will add phosguard to the carbon in the near future.

Also mounted my new kessil 360x. Still working on a schedule for them but so far I love their flexibility over a t5 fixture.

Currently working on the wiring under the stand to keep everything nice and neat. I need to make the screen top to prevent jumpers before adding fish. Will test again next week and if all is still looking good I will transfer the clownfish. The hammer frag appears to be doing well and opens nicely every day. Getting little spots of algae but not much yet, will add a CUC once that happens.
 
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