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Red Sea Reefer 250 build!

Nanojoeaquatic

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Hello all! a little new to R2R..

Anyways I see these build threads and i love the documentation of everything. SO cool to see everyones builds come alive.
Some background info about me:
I did youtube for a little while under the name "Nanojoe".. still post videos here and there but not so much in the past year.
Im from Southern Nj and im an Aquarium Technician for a living! (my life is literally fish tanks).. :oops:

Im starting this Red sea reefer 250 upgrade from a fluval evo 13.5 which has been a fun experience. I originally set up a 40 breeder AIO aquarium. Just wasnt happy with the the height and being sumpless. So i tore that down and jumped out of the hobby for a little while. I still had the evo going but was not really documenting its progression or short falls, failures etc.

The 250 red sea will be an SPS dominated reef. This is my first time really having my own SPS tank and am very excited to be a stick head. Theres just something about these specimens that draws us all into them. Colors, place of origin, down to even the stories behind certain corals in our industry / hobby that just attract me/us...

So for starters the Red Sea is dropped shipped i had never experienced an drop ship before especially for something on the larger side...
It was delivered in a tractor trailer and you can have the driver pallet jack anywhere on your property...i dont think they can help you carry inside though.. so have another pair of arms on standby. Luckily my girlfriend was home to help me
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It came in 2 packages, stand in its own box and the display and fixins all inside of their own box. Set up was a breeze. Its literally like setting up ikea furniture. Although the directions saying the parts were labeled with letters to distinguish from each other for ease of build.. mine did not. You dont really need that aspect because it all really makes sense putting it together.

So the only issue i found with my plumbing is that i had leak in my return line union (left union shown in pic)
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For the life of me, no matter how hard i twisted and with channel locks, could not get the freaking leak to stop! Made sure the flange to the union was clean and going on straight, no cross threading etc. etc. Finally i busted out the lube.... :cool:
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Magic lube saved the day! Gave the o-ring a generous dollop of magic lube and no leak.. so far... not sure if this will be an permanent fix but this stuff has worked in the past long term on jobs... So we shall see. Fingers crossed.

Moving onto the scape.. ugh....
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I am very indecisive when it comes to scapes or anything in general.. picking out candy, beer or even what i want for dinner...
In a way i absolutely love doing scapes. Its great alone time and to focus on your reef and become more apart of what you created.
Spent a lot of time outside re configuring rocks to my liking only to do the process over and over again.
Above is not the final scape but close to it... I know in an SPS tank i shouldnt stress over a scape as you want your corals to be the scape. Part of me does not stop at that...

Thats all i have so far as i am typing this 7/28/2020 i have my 5 stage RODI pumping out some water into a bucket to fill this up! Will be active on this post so any questions ask a way!
Thanks for reading up to this point. Glad to be apart of this Forum and particular thread.
 
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Nanojoeaquatic

Nanojoeaquatic

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good luck for your new start; which light will you use?
Thank you! I am going with a T5 set up, right now i have a four bulb 24 inch light fixture. I may upgrade a little and get the aquatic life 36inch T5 led hybrid set up. Just want some blue leds for that color pop and ramp effect... still up in the air about it. For sure doing T5 in the end.
 
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Nanojoeaquatic

Nanojoeaquatic

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Wow, looks great so far! What stocking are you thinking for the tank?
Corals: I really want some encrusting montis for the lower front rocks and a bunch of acropora, cyphastrea maybe some lepastrea.

Fish: So far my list is Yellow tang, Powder brown tang, yellow coris wrasse, 6 line wrasse, Long nose flame hawk, white cap goby and some hermit crabs and shrimps becuase they are fun to watch...
Of course the girlfriend wants to pick something out as well. Let her have some fun with the tank too.
 
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Nanojoeaquatic

Nanojoeaquatic

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I really dislike the red sea plumbing.. feels cheap for what i / we pay for these aquariums. Not the end of the world as it is functional and working. Think i may do the plumbing myself in the very near future. Just have to design the manifold to include UV and Reactors.
 
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Nanojoeaquatic

Nanojoeaquatic

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@Nanojoeaquatic what is your equipment list? What are you using for makeup water? I have a Reefer 250 too. Click on my “Build Thread” banner.
Return is Reef octopus varios 2
Protein skimmer: reef octopus 110 INT
No powerhead yet as I'm still shopping.
Marinepure spheres and neo marine salt.
I'm using a 5 stage spectrapure 90 GPD RODI filter with DIMC cartridge as the final stage.
 
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Nanojoeaquatic

Nanojoeaquatic

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An update 8/4/20
Got my Reef Octopus 110 INT installed and did a test run. Found the pump and air silencer was a little too noisy for my liking. The silencer had a thudding noise as it was drawing in air. Ive used this skimmer before on other builds and have not experienced this noise... I took the pump apart and reassembled it. Fixed the issue. Now just want the pump to break in some and build a bit of bio film to hopefully quiet that down a little.
Had to build a DIY skimmer stand for it as my sump level is at 9 inches and this skimmer needs 6 inches to operate optimally. Some PVC, zip ties and egg crate (as most of R2R suggested to do) did the job! easy and cheap. i did make a post about this on the DIY section.
skimmer stand.jpg


Moving on i started the cycle yesterday 8/3/20
I am using Brightwells Microbacter start XLM in conjunction with Microbacter quickcycl (ammonia in a bottle) following up with microbacter 7 for long term.
after one day this is my ammonia result
cycle.jpg


I just bough a cheap ammonia test cause who knows when ill ever use this again. Looks like ammonia is .25 - .50ppm
Following the directions this is the range where i want to be for now. Also for the love of god brightwell, please shorten your literature on your products. Disclaimer: I do love the in depth literature you have on the bottles but give us a QR code for that to pull up on the phones..i am familiar with your products by now but sometimes i find my self reading over and over all of it to soak it all in when all i want is the directions lol. i know someone will give me **** for it..

Disclaimer pt.2: I am a HUGE fan of brightwells products. Will be continuing exclusively using their additives and Neo Marine salt. Probably many other products once i figure out more of what i want to do.
cycle2.jpg
 

ZachP

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Thanks! Just checked it out looks really cool. Do you like the vectra pump?
I actually ended up doing a Simplicity return pump. The guy at my (trusted) LFS talked me into it plus like 2 other people I know have had them for 3+ years with no problem. So decided to save the money and do that instead. So far it’s great
 
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Nanojoeaquatic

Nanojoeaquatic

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Been a little bit since ive posted any updates, heres the latest!
Apex board setup:

So starting off i just went to home depot got a piece of wood as the backing for the apex board. What i really was trying to accomplish was to add more of a dynamic to the cabinet rather than doing just all black down there. I wanted to stain the wood too so i went this grey rustic look. Came out alright, i was really tempted to do a cherry stain.

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With the help of some "Focal Banger" by The Alchemist beer in Vermont, (if you know you know)
i was ready to go with setting up as i really didnt plan it out too much... i know... this is how ALL my projects end up. Little planning and just going for it. I usually do okay, sometimes coming up with cool ideas as i go along.

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First was cleaning up this mess of cables and unplugging everything to get it out of the way. Also to get things cleaned up so i can just focus on getting the board in.

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Cool, now all this cleaned up. Time to get the board fitted in place and screw it into the cabinet

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my cut wasnt the straightest... im better with plumbing than wood tbh... i may just fill the gaps with black caulk to get it to look straight.

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Thats in place i can move onto getting the components in place. Im just using command velcro strips that hold or say they hold 16lbs. i didnt really want to get into screw placement. I also wanted to be able to go back on things and move them around as my needs change.

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They are doing the job. I would recommend.

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Thats all i have so far. I left some space to include (2) Ecotech MP10 controllers along with room for an DOS setup in the near furture. Ive also been eyeing up a Trident system but... that will be awhile till i pick one up. Dont really need it right now.
I have plans to put a wall between the sump and the controller area for safety reasons to my gear.
 

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