Randy's Redsea Reefer 250 and the rest of the Coral Farm

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RandyC

RandyC

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------ Frag Tank (Day 98) ------

My battle with dinos is definitely over (hopefully the war has been won forever!) and things seem to recovering extremely well. Polyp extension is good, color is starting to come back and I'm seeing a good number of frags encrusting on the tiles. I'm in a happy place again with the progression of the frag tank.

WWC Hippie Juice


SC Orange Passion


Vivid Confetti


BC Grafted Hung's Unbelievable Rainbow!


JF Fox Flame


WWC Helios


ASD Rainbow Millepora


ARC Fireworks


TGC Cherry Bomb - This hairy beast is back to monster polyp extension, just need the colors now.


Colorado Sunbursts seem to look even better than they ever did before the dinos. I'm slowly being sold on never running a tank without UV again. ;)
 
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panui22

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Very inspiring build definitely make me want to build a frag tank lol.... following along
 
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RandyC

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Lets talk heat! I live in the East side of the Bay Area in Northern California and our temperatures normally aren’t super hot compared to some other parts of the country. But man, we are having a scorcher by our standards today.

In the shade:
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In the sun:
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My biggest problem is that my garage doors face southwest and I get all the afternoon and evening sun beating directly on the doors. When I put the two tank setups in the garage without a chiller, days like today freaked me out thinking about it.

So I first installed some Owens Corning R-8 rated insulation I got from amazon on my garage doors that have worked wonders.
9775EEE5-7ACF-4A16-8B60-E0F837C37FA8.jpeg


Even with the sun beating down on the doors with 111.3F, the garage is currently at only a toasty 89.2F

E8AA9EA0-B8C9-40B4-8E94-3B54869D7C8F.jpeg


In lieu of a chiller, I currently have two 10” fans over my 40 breeders setup and three 2200rpm personal desk fans on the 6x3x1’ frag tank. Let me tell you, evaporative cooling is no joke. The 40 breeders is currently clocking in at 81.7F and the frag tank is at 80.5F. Pretty crazy fans are getting me a 8-9 degree F difference from ambient. It also helps that we don’t have a huge amount of humidity in Northern California so evaporative cooling works really well for us. Definitely happy I can survive without an added expense of a chiller.

EDA65B73-286C-4F4B-91EE-9372B328E4D5.jpeg
DF303221-F4F1-4B4D-A7B3-59946368139F.jpeg
 
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powers2001

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@RandyC I'm a big fan of your RO Regal 150 although I think I would prefer the space-saver with pump inside the body. I would have one on my REEFER 250 but it won't fit in the skimmer section of my Synergy Reef sump. But... I could always get a different sump, although I would have to get some more research about whether or not this skimmer would be a good fit with my system after I have a sizable bio-load. I would like to have your expert experience, advice, and opinion on how well this skimmer does on your REEFER 250. I noticed in your first post the picture of your skimmer shows some build-up in the upper part of its body. Is it a pretty thin layer? I've read when skimmers are over-sized they can sometimes have build-up in the neck but you have a neck cleaner for that.
 
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@RandyC I'm a big fan of your RO Regal 150 although I think I would prefer the space-saver with pump inside the body. I would have one on my REEFER 250 but it won't fit in the skimmer section of my Synergy Reef sump. But... I could always get a different sump, although I would have to get some more research about whether or not this skimmer would be a good fit with my system after I have a sizable bio-load. I would like to have your expert experience, advice, and opinion on how well this skimmer does on your REEFER 250. I noticed in your first post the picture of your skimmer shows some build-up in the upper part of its body. Is it a pretty thin layer? I've read when skimmers are over-sized they can sometimes have build-up in the neck but you have a neck cleaner for that.
I think it really comes down to your bioload. I really don’t have a huge bioload and my skimmer has been reduced to just providing a place for good gas exchange on the reefer. Before I installed my 12 gallon external fuge, it definitely saw more action, but as it stands, I can’t remember the last time I emptied out my collection cup (at least two months). Could be that I just don’t clean the neck and the neck cleaner enough to get the bubbles all the way up the neck, but nitrates and phosphates are low enough that I’m not overly concerned to make a huge effort to clean it regularly . To tell you the truth, I most likely don’t even need a skimmer in the Reefer 250.

I actually have the the space saver version as well in a setup that is around 90 gallons of total water volume with a heavier bioload and it does well in that setting. That said, I would never buy a skimmer with a pump inside the body if I had the space to have it outside the body. It’s a pain to take out and dissemble to clean the pump (especially in tight spaces with low sump ceiling height). And gets really annoying when your snails are breeding and they get caught in there once a week or loose chaeto gets bunch up in there.
 
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powers2001

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@RandyC I see the space-saver would be harder for taking apart to clean but once you get the pump out isn't the pump easy to take apart and clean? Do you ever fool around with the pump speed setting on the two skimmers? I would ramp down the pump during feed mode with my Apex. I would also take the cord with the cup's float switch and strip the wires bare to put in my Apex's Break out Box to send me alerts when the cup is full.
 
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@RandyC I see the space-saver would be harder for taking apart to clean but once you get the pump out isn't the pump easy to take apart and clean? Do you ever fool around with the pump speed setting on the two skimmers? I would ramp down the pump during feed mode with my Apex. I would also take the cord with the cup's float switch and strip the wires bare to put in my Apex's Break out Box to send me alerts when the cup is full.
If your sump area has a low ceiling, it makes it a pain to get the pump out. You pretty much have to take the whole skimmer out of sump to service it. and that just makes a mess to clean up. Once the skimmer is out, it's easy to clean the pump; no different than the non-spacesaving model. I don't fool around with pump speed for feeding. I never turn off any of my pumps unless it's during a water change.

You don't need the strip the wires for the float switch. Just add a check in Apex programming (assuming you're using an EB832 & a newer Apex) to detect when the Wattage draw for the skimmer is less than a couple of watts since the float switch will turn off the pump via the reef octopus controller.
 
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----- Frag Tank (Day 127 Part 1 of 2) -----

Frag tank is continuing to do well. Ever since my dinos have gone away, my calcium reactor effluent drip rate has increased 150% (5.0ml/min to 12.5ml/min) and continues to rise. UV has definitely worked to eliminate my fight with dinos and the water is crystal clear from algae as well.

Some inquiring minds wanted to know my water params so here they are:

Salinity: 1.026
Alk: 7.5-8.0
Calc: 420
Mg: 1290
Nitrate: 2.5-5ppm
Phosphates: 0.04-0.06
Temp: 77.5-78.5F (normal) - max temp is 82F during summer
pH: 8.14-8.46 (avg 8.29)

Here are a couple of 30-day progression shots:

Vivid Confetti (Day 98)


Vivid Confetti Today (Day 127)


JF Fox Flame (Day 98)


JF Fox Flame Today (Day 127)


SC Orange Passion (Day 98)


SC Orange Passion Today (Day 127)


Arc Fireworks (Day 98)


Arc Fireworks Today (Day 127)
 
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Best reef aquarium LED lighting
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RandyC

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Gorgeous system and incredible colonies! Question what are the large frag squares you’re mounting the frags to?
Thanks!
Thanks! I use 3x6" travertine tiles from Home Depot that I score and snap in half to make 3x3" squares. Has worked great for me so far and since travertine is just natural limestone, shouldn't pose any issue for our reef tanks since the tiles don't appear to be treated with any chemicals or dyes.

7DBB0FF0-541C-4FF9-8D13-9C68957AE244.jpeg


https://www.homedepot.com/p/MSI-Bologna-Chiaro-3-in-x-6-in-Tumbled-Travertine-Floor-and-Wall-Tile-1-sq-ft-case-THDW3-T-CH3X6T/100664325?cm_mmc=Shopping|G|Base|D23|23-6_FLOOR_AND_WALL_TILE|NA|PLA|71700000032320965|58700004387943932|92700036924278105&gclid=EAIaIQobChMIlcWet6io4wIVif5kCh14sgMKEAQYCSABEgKqGfD_BwE&gclsrc=aw.ds
 
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Lilmatty5dimes

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These are some of my camera shy friends that go into hiding when FTS get taken. But they can't resist a top down camera shot.

Left-to-right: OG Colorado Sunburst, CC Supernova and CC Inferno.


Up close and personal shots. What's cool is that you can see that up close, they are very different in their markings.

OG Colorado Sunburst


CC Supernova


CC Inferno
Now can you honestly see a difference in the 3 nems? They all look really close to one another. Great collection for sure.
 

Lilmatty5dimes

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Awesome collection of sps. I’ve been truly debating on getting a uv and may just break down and buy one. Lol that’s pretty good for temp on your tank with only using fans.
How much top of water are you using on each tank? Definitely one thing you couldn’t do in Florida.
 
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