The "high tech" ultra compact Pico build. : Fluval V build (lots of pics)

chaostactics

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A Fluval Spec / Evo V build!

*The tank no longer resides with me in Hawaii, but I get to live vicariously through the new owner.




17-Sept-2020 First Photos

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11-Nov-2020 Update
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1-August-2021, update
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Tech list:
- Fluval Spec V tank.
- Fluval marine 3 LED with Current USA mounting bracket.
- Marineland 606 return pump
-Hygger Adjustable DC powerhead
-VCA Random Flow Generator
- Inkbird ITC-308S
- Hydor 50 watt heater.
- XP Aqua Duetto ATO (super slim power supply)
- Auto Aqua Smart Level Security
-InTank Aquatics water director, plug kit, and surface skimmer
- Artic COV- 44100 8 Switch power strip with custom ICM203 feed delay circuit.

Always wanted to try a proper PICO reef. I love DIY and this one absolutely pushed my limits, the hardest build I've ever done. The biggest constraint was using all UL or other certified products.

Picked it up as a aptasia garden with two adult clowns (sold them off right away).
 
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chaostactics

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New gear just showed up! Hoping this will fit.
IMG_20200917_150024.jpg

And... Already hate it. It's a great concept but the low level sensor is way too low for a pico and probably many nano aquariums. Just went ahead and spent double the price and pulled the trigger on a XP duetto ATO
 
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chaostactics

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Well back to something I do love. Some pics of the first DIY/mod I've done to the tank.

The tank came with a Current LED which seems to get a lot of hate but tbh I kinda like it and also I don't want to spend any more money on a new light.

I didn't however like the rim/leg mount of the light on the rim. Too easy to knock off, I already sent the light for a swim, and I wanted something that was going to look more sleek.

Step one was to cut the stock mounting bracket off the rear chamber. It was glued on with silicone so a little bit of patience and a razor blade was all it took to remove it.
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And then I did a little bit of R&D and some mock-up and came up with a way to mount a stock current tank mount bracket without using the supplied clamp.
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chaostactics

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This is really my first time doing this sort of acrylic project. Huge shout out to @AVAST Marine for having craftics plastic weld on hand that stuff is a pain to find but works so much better than weldon.
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I did all the cutting on my circular saw with a 200 tooth blade but it was fairly rusty/dull so I ended up with pretty rough edges. So I tried flame polishing the edges using a blowtorch and although not flawless came out better than expected.
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chaostactics

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The slot in the bracket is in case I ever want to add a thumb screw to adjust the height of the light. But in order to prevent light spill I plan on having the light as low/close to the water as possible.

After letting the acrylic set for 24 hours I then attached my new bracket to the back of the tank with silicone That way if I ever wanted to remove it down the road it would just take more patience and a razor blade.

PhotoGrid_1600398571752.jpg
I have a lot of failed DIY projects so I was pretty happy when this turned out the way I was hoping.
 
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chaostactics

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Happy to report the light bracket is holding. Very very well as a matter of fact.

I actually removed one bracket since the light weighs so little and it can now freely pivot 90 degrees (and a bit more) in each direction.
MVIMG_20200917_170847.jpg
 
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chaostactics

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New toys. I've already started messing around with them a bit.
IMG_20200919_083506.jpg


They are the Hygger Mini Wave Maker rated at up to 1600 gph (allegedly). Based on prop surface are Id guess a lot lower than that. It can be turned down to "40%" but not sure what that translates to.
and the Jebao SLW-10 rated upto 1050 gph. (Not really clear on GPH on lowest setting is.

One of these will replace the, now seemingly massive, Hydor Nano the tank came with.

Here are some comparison pics.
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chaostactics

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Another new piece of gear. Arrived as part on my Amazon subscribe and save, so free shipping and a % off.

Never thought I'd use the word cute to refer to a piece of Aquarium gear... But here we are.
It's so TINY!
IMG_20200919_192158.jpg
 
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chaostactics

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Man I was hoping this thread would have at least a little interest...

Found a solution for a upgraded return pump although I'd strongly prefer to have a pump that fits with minimal modification.

This thing does rip especially when paired with a VCA random flow generator.
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chaostactics

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Flow diverter from inTank. Love it. Came with two sizes for the price of one and one of them perfectly fits the aftermarket DIY 3D printed rack couple really baby drops of super glue to keep it in place.
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Do you have a build thread or tank journal here on R2R?

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  • NO not interested in starting a build thread or journal

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