Red Sea Reefer 350 build

punchy7080

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So I'm getting back in the hobby after a break of almost 20 years. My prior experience culminated with a custom built 360 gallon acrylic aquarium that I built into the wall of my house (see below). It's CRAZY how much the hobby has changed over that length of time. I'm really enjoying jumping back in and learning about all the updates and advancements. I might go huge again someday, but for now I've settled on the RSR 350 as my entry back into the hobby. Hoping to have it by this weekend and get started. I setup my mixing station (pic below) so I'm ready to start mixing water when my RO/DI shows up tomorrow. Ordered a bunch of stuff to get started from BSR (Biospira, salt, RO/DI, rock and sand) and then picked up a used Nyos 120 off the forum here. Planning to go with a couple Radion XR 30 Pro lights. Planning a small refugium if I can figure out how to set it up in the mini-sump provided by the RSR 350 :( I'll post pics and keep things updated as I go along... hopefully big updates this weekend if the tank arrives. Super excited to be back in the hobby and share it with my sons that are now 19, 17 and 14 (hence the almost 20 year break!).

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punchy7080

punchy7080

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The RSR 350 is up and running! Still deciding on lighting. I’ve got the one XR30 Pro going right now but considering a pair of reef brite hybrids with halides. More to come!

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punchy7080

punchy7080

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Sump and equipment mostly setup at this point. Still have calcium reactor in waiting but don't need that just yet. Running the stock ATO for now but will upgrade to osmolator soon (looking for good deal on used setup). Nyos 120 skimmer has settled in nicely after a few days (picked up on the forum here). Excited to run this Clear Water scrubber (CW 100) and see how it does. I wouldn't have spent that much money but it came with the RSR 350 that I bought used. Cabinet already had LED lights mounted with a motion sensor which is awesome :) Return pump is Current USA 1900 GPH DC pump which seems to work well. Planning to add BSR dual reactor for carbon/GFO and run off the return pump as it seems to have plenty of GPH for both tasks? Also has the Current USA 1050 GPH dual wave pump kit (3 wave pumps total). If I was starting from scratch, not sure those are the pumps I would have chosen, but I love the ability to program/control them and I've got great flow in the tank from what I can tell so far.

Premium Aquatics had a sale this weekend on the Reef Brite hybrids so I picked up a couple of those in the 250w version. I'm going to run their 14k twin arc bulb to start and see how I like it... can always swap out later. I'll have a Radion XR30 G5 PRO for sale here in a few days once the halides arrive and get installed. LOVE the light but just think I'll like the performance, cost and flexibility of the halide/LED combo in the long run. Planning to get the RB LED control module at some point for ramp up and down on the LED lamps.

Been up for a week and a day at this point and have two green chromis, a six line wrasse, three dispar anthias, a cleaner shrimp and 15 blue legged hermits. All eating and doing very well at this point (thanks biospira!!). I've got a small hammer, red digi and a red goni as well that are all open and happy during the day. Won't add any more fish for awhile just to be sure everything continues to go well, but will probably be out coral shopping on the weekends to add a piece here and there. I need to get better at taking good tank pics with these bluer colored lights. I'm running the BRS recommended settings on the Radion which I think looks really good, but still comes out SUPER blue in the pictures.

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punchy7080

punchy7080

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Finally came up with a “clean” way to mount the halides so going in that direction. Reefbright hybrids with RB electronic ballast and twin arc 250w 14k bulbs. Pretty similar in color to the XR30 PRO on BRS recommended settings but WAY brighter. Not gonna lie, love the real looking shimmer of the halides. Might try 20k bulbs in the future, but I’m rolling with this setup for sure. Got some black wooden shelf brackets from Home Depot and ran the wiring through the wall to an unfinished room in our basement.
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punchy7080

punchy7080

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Made some improvements under the tank. Took the algae scrubber offline for now as I don’t want to run a new tank too low on nutrients. Also ditched the Red Sea top off for the tunze, major upgrade obviously! Added some X1 dosing pumps for alk and calcium and made some DIY dosing containers tonight. Doing the DIY stuff is one of my favorite parts of the hobby! Added an inkbird that will control the new finnex heater and will eventually run my fan(s) as needed for the halides. Finally, grabbed a continuous monitoring ph probe and temp probe from Amazon this week. I scored a deal on some used apex gear and will be adding that soon, but pretty set for now!

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Do you take notice when your coral starts stretching or shrinking?

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