Spejz's Arctic Red Sea Reefer 170 (First Tank)


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Oct 16, 2020
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Hello reefers, soon to be reefers and previous reefers!

One week ago I move from the "soon to be reefer" to the "reefer" category myself, when I bought my first saltwater aquarium. An already up and running Red Sea Reefer 170.

My name Filip, I live in northern Sweden and have for some years now been interested to get in to the saltwater hobby. I have had some freshwater aquariums for the past 3.5 years and done a little bit of tetra and scalar breeding. But since I have been studying and living in a student apartment for the past 4 yeas, I felt like a saltwater tank needed to wait. But now with the time spent at university behind me and with a more spacious apartment, it was time to start look for a deal.

Finding a saltwater aquarium around the area where I am from is not super easy because of the small amount of hobbyists and the limited supply. As an example, there just one wholesaler that transport aquarium fish up here, and my closest LFS that got limited some saltwater fish/equipment is a 2 hours drive away and the second closest over 5 hours.

So when I found this offer, I took it. Everything to run the aquarium was included such as the general equipment, a bucket of salt and some fish food. But this also meant that I did not have all the equipment I might have liked, such as water test kits and and so on.

After the transportation I tried to assemble Red Sea Reefer but without success, all the 3 pipes leaked at the connection to the sump and I noticed small cracks in the plastic at the threads. Waiting for replacement parts was not an alternative so early the next morning I went to buy thread sealing tape and super glue as a last resort. But I managed to get everything sealed with tape alone so that was great.

After the setup with heating and salt mixing and acclimation, I put in all the live rock with corals and anemones, shrimps, clean up crew and a fish.


Me (with corona/stay at home hair) setting up the tank. You can also se my freshwater tank in the reflection


Full tank shot (FTS)​

Stock list:​

1 Azure Damsefish
1 Banded Coral Shrimp
1 Blood Red Fire Shrimp
Around 6 Bubble Tip Anemones (BTA)
Green Star Polyp(GSP)
3 types of mushroom corals
2 types of Kenya Tree corals
Colony of Palythoas
2 Hermit Crabs
2 Bumble Bee Snail
2 other snails
Lots of mystery objects :D
Also lost of aptasia and vermited snails :/

I don't know the name of everything just yet, but I would appreciate if someone could help me id some corals and mystery objects later on.


Coral Banded Shrimp

20210308_203104 (2).jpg

Blood Red Fire Shrimp

20210309_202910 (2).jpg

Red Hermit Crab, don't know exact species

Equipment list:​

Aquarium: Red Sea Reefer 170
- aquarium 130 l, 34 gal
- sump 35 l, 9 gal
Light: CTLite G4
Skimmer: Bubble Magus Curve 5
Streamer: Eheim
Return pump: Jebao

The very next day after the setup the water was cloudy, I was worried that an anemone might have died but instead it looked like an anemone had split (most likely as a stress reaction). All anemones in general was quite closed, and for some you could not see any tentacles at all.
I also noticed 5 white spots on the Damsels fins. First I thought if Ich but with a closer inspection I thought it looked more like some general infection/fungi. So if I just could get the Damsel to eat well to build up its immune system, the spots should go away. But that was easier said then done. I tried pellets, flake food, Mysis Shrimp and Artemia without success.

4 days passed and I started to get worried again. I decided to try to let the frozen Mysis cube melt together with a garlic clove. And finally the Damsel decided that now was the time to eat.
Over the next days the white spots on the Damsel went away and the Anemones started to look better and better.

At this point, one week after the tank setup, I feel like the tank is somewhat under control, but I have still no clue about water parameters except salinity.
I have also forgot to mention that for now I will use tap water for salt mixing and auto top off (ATO). But I think I will look into buying some kind of water treatment unit in the future.
Here are some water analytics data from the water treatment plant if anybody is interested (I think most values will be understandable even though its in Swedish).


< means that they hit the low of their measuring equipment, so the real value is lower

The plans for the near future of this aquarium is to first of all get some stability, wait for my ordered water test kits to arrive so I can get some knowledge about the water parameters. After that I want to do a reefscape and add sand, and then when everything is stable look to add some new lifeforms to the tank.

If you managed to read this far, thank you! I hope you are interested to follow along the progression of this Red Sea Reefer 170 and my first saltwater tank journey.

Have a great day!
Top Shelf Aquatics


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Here comes some of my previously mentioned mystery objects (mystery to me at least).
If someone know anything about these objects, please let me know.

First of all I have 2 normal looking mussels in the tank, maybe 4 cm in length. But then I have this huge mussel, or at least I think its a mussel, that is 15 cm in length. I haven't seen anything similar in pictures or video of other peoples tanks. According to the previous owner, it has grown 10 cm in half a year. Anyone got more information on this?


Mystery Object 1: Huge mussel

20210309_204809 (2).jpg

Hermit Crab living on the edge

20210308_155617 (2).jpg

Mystery Object 2: White finger sponge. Soft, got some holes and seems to be hollow

20210302_162549 (2).jpg

Mystery Object 3: Beige ball, also maybe some kind of sponge, found 7 around the tank

20210307_155029 (2).jpg

Mystery Object 4: Black velvet, looks like the texture of velvet

Well that was some of my mystery objects, fingers crossed they are not bad for the tank.
As said before, if you have any more information on some of these, please let me know.

Thank you!



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Time for an update!

Shipment arrived
The tank has now been up and running for a month and things are going relatively alright. The order I places on various water test kits, sand, carbon, long turkey baster, Aptasia remover and coral nutrition has arrived.


I tried out feeding the anemones with the long turkey baster and I must say it works great, so I don't need to put my hands in the tank. I can strongly recommend it.


Three months prior to buying the tank, I came bye 20 kg of as good as free live rock. But since I did not know when I would buy a reef tank, I dried and froze the rock to kill anything living (stored in a shed outside).

I have now tried to create a reefscape by gluing the rocks together with cyanoacrylate glue.
As I'm not using reef cement I place the rocks in shapes where they can stand by themself and just use the glue to lock everything in place.

For me it's very hard to know what I want to build. The one thing I'm sure of is the I want something natural looking. I like the scapes with much open area and different size reef pillars, I also like scapes with arches and branching structures, and finally I like a scape with some kind if rock wall with lots of cracks(to create depth).
But then I only have a 58 cm x 48 cm bottom area minus the overflow to fit everything in.
Here are a few iterations of what I came up with...


Iteration 1: Like the cracks/depth, Don't like all the vertical surface on the right structure


Iteration 2: Close to the final result, I like the zig zag ravine through the center

Iteration 2 video


Final result glued together, added small ledges in vertical areas, island is meant for the GSP.

I added the right rock structure to the tank without removing any existing rock. I will gradually add the rest of the structures to the tank, remove some existing rock and move some rocks from the tank to the sump.

This is how the tank looks like now, a bit chaotic but alright.


That's it for this update. Take care!

Have you ever had a Angelfish in your reef tank?

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