Reef Tank Time Machine - 120 Gallon Edition

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jdthome

jdthome

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I have a service area for making water and QT fish and coral. The display tank is in my office and does not have a good area to place items while I service the tank. I am currently using Brute cans to take away water and bring in new salt water until I add some plumbing to help a little better. For a work surface, I have been using a small laptop folding table commonly used near your sofa. Its not difficult to set up but its been a pain a few times and sometimes I would like a bit more space. I wanted a way to store my service equipment. I may have gone overboard but I love it. I purchase a small mechanic's service cart. It stores everything I need from tools and test kits to even my fragging parts. Also a bucket and pump/hose combo on the bottom. On Sale I only paid $169 for it total.
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Here it is as a work surface.

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I have bought a few setups in the past year while gathering parts for my build. I ended up with a few refractometers.

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jdthome

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Playing with ideas for a stock list. Here are my initial thoughts.

2x Rehomed Clowns Currently in tank
3x Banggai Cardinals Currently in tank
Royal Gramma Currently in tank
Coral Beauty Currently in tank
4x Lyretail Anthias
Diamond Watchman Goby
2x Scarlet Skunk Cleaner Shrimp


Additional possible fish
Longnose Hawkfish
1x Tang Scopas or Sailfin or some other suggestion
longnose copperband Butterfly
 
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Water went into this tank in January. The 2 clowns were added and the tank was dosed with 250ml of

Brightwell Aquatics MicroBacter Start XLM.​


The cycle zeroed ammonia and nitrate in 9 days. I tried to keep the lights off for the past 3 months. Each night the kids have been watching the tank more and more. I have a breakout switch added to the Apex to turn on the lights @ 50%. No normal schedule yet. That being said. They are watching it up to 2 hours each night now that there are more fish. Today I notices that the diatoms finally popped. I should have pods from algaebarn by the end of the week.
 
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As the fish begin going in, I need to start running the lights at a regular schedule. I'm not sure what to set them at and would love to hear some opinions.

Setting the system up and put 3 RapidLED Onyx lights along with 4 undimmable AliExpress light bars a friend at work gave me. Here is what the light system looks like.

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I have an Apex VDM to control the RapidLED units. They consist of 3 channels broken out as follows:

Channel 1 - 42 CREE XT-E Royal Blue LED
Channel 2 - 24 CREE XP-G Cool White
Channel 3 - 12 Violet UV 3 CREE XP-E Green and 3 OLSON 660nm RED LED

The Blue/UV AliExpress bars are just on and off via an Apex outlet.

It's only an assumption and It's likely a poor one, so that is why I am creating this message. With the number of different LEDs on these fixtures, it should balance out so all 3 channels are equal ????????? IE run all channels at 50% or some other number.

I have a par meter that was purchased from Amazon to spot check the levels as both my brother and my son are all setting up tanks at the same time. Here are the readings for the tank with water and all lights at 100%

Tank 100% par readings.jpg


I think these numbers are fairly high. So I will need to lower the max output to something lower. Here is a general initial plan for stocking but its only thoughts at the moment. it may change as corals are added.

Full tank shot Possible coral positioning.jpg


Any thoughts or help?
 
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I'm also interested in hearing what the thoughts are of the 2 extra pieces of Tonga branch I added to tie the 3 islands together. I have mixed feelings.

Full tank shot blank.jpg
 
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Its my hope that if the cloves or zoas get out of hand, I can easily remove those 2 center rock/shell
 
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Running my lights at 50% at the moment and for a photo period of just 8 hours. With only 4 hours of the full 50% and a 2 hour ramp up/down each side of that for sunrise and sunset. Hope to add a couple easy tester corals this weekend
 
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Added a bit of grating in the overflow to try to prevent most fish from going down there. It has not been an issue yet, but maybe this will help at some point.

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How much do you care about having a display FREE of wires, pumps and equipment?

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