Waterbox 220 build thread, fully automated

ReefCoder

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Nice build I am about to pull the trigger on the 220.6 and my gear this week- also located nearby in Humboldt (about 1.5 hours north of Phoenix, just south of Prescott).

Couple of questions - are you finding the MP40's provide enough flow? I was thinking 2 MP60s due to the fact I have heard the 40s don't hold on to the glass too well because of the 3/4 thickness and I would LIKE to have them both on the same side - planning on SPS at the end near the MP60s and LPS on the far end. I can't see the powerheads in any of your pics - where do you have them placed?

How are you liking the filter roller?

Hopefully your reef cleaners order comes through alive. I haven't had much luck with them on the last couple of orders, a lot of DOA and I decided I am taking a break from ordering from John for a while.
 
Lazys Coral House

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Hi im excepting the same tank soon, any tips or heads up? Any delivery issues, damage? Leveling/ stand build issues?
 
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NewReefer42

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Nice build I am about to pull the trigger on the 220.6 and my gear this week- also located nearby in Humboldt (about 1.5 hours north of Phoenix, just south of Prescott).

Couple of questions - are you finding the MP40's provide enough flow? I was thinking 2 MP60s due to the fact I have heard the 40s don't hold on to the glass too well because of the 3/4 thickness and I would LIKE to have them both on the same side - planning on SPS at the end near the MP60s and LPS on the far end. I can't see the powerheads in any of your pics - where do you have them placed?

How are you liking the filter roller?

Hopefully your reef cleaners order comes through alive. I haven't had much luck with them on the last couple of orders, a lot of DOA and I decided I am taking a break from ordering from John for a while.
Yea, I think the mp40s are fine, especially for right now. I want to go sps dominate so after there's a bunch of stick on there I think I might have to add 2 more. They stick to the glass just fine. Mine are on the rear panel, bottom left and bottom right. I'm glad my hiding them works. I designed the aquascape around that idea, so the flow goes front to back rather than left to right. Also makes glass cleaning and side viewing easier and more fun. So far I'm mixed on the filter roller. On one hand it pulls out a lot of stuff, but on the other it beeps a lot and I'm not sure if it's out of fleece or what the deal is. Ita actually off right now bc I think I might have rushed rushed entire roll in like a week. Maybe I don't have it set up right, I'm not 100% sure tbh. However I'm going through socks like crazy too, so I guess I just have lots of **** in the water. Lastly, the snails came in on Saturday. Everything was dead and stinky. John is going to reship, and I set up a QT tank in the garage today for them. The blue tang has 2 final weeks of observation and then he can get moved over. He's in a copper free system now. If you're ever in the valley dm me you can see the system in person.
 
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NewReefer42

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Hi im excepting the same tank soon, any tips or heads up? Any delivery issues, damage? Leveling/ stand build issues?
Hey, congrats! Tips? Rent those glass suction cup things from someone. Or buy and return from grainger. I had some teeny tiny damage which I photographed and told WB about, they gave me a few options and picked the "cash back" one lol. One question is "how are you going to leak test?" Another thinkni wish I could have done a little differently is run some of the electrical cabling behind the stand while it was accessible. Unfortunately I didn't have everything available at the time, so now it's more of a mess back there than I'd like. If you can, buy everything and have it on hand before you put the tank o ln the stand. As far as build goes, I love everything so far. I do wish the dividers that run front to back had some holes in them for running tubing and cabling, but I can drill those myself, I just really down want to. Lastly, if you do what I did controller board like, you'll have to find a way from them tipping faceward. I haven't solved that yet. Middle chamber is fine bc its wedged in there, but electrical chamber is just leaning right now. Frag tank chamber is also just wedged in, but not super stable. Gl man, grats!
 

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Update: bought a plank autofeeder, which just shipped. Also picked up a PM2 module bc I want to have control over QT tank temp. Right now I'm just using one of the crappy petco $10 digital thermometers, and down the road I might want to add a salinity probe. After watching Ryan's video about how to configure heaters w an apex, I bought the BRS controller, but then I watched the Apex neptune video which contradicted Ryan, so now I'm not sure if I want to install it tbh. For those not in the loop in that discussion, the question is "should you plug titanium heaters directly into the apex and let the apex toggle it on and off, or should you plug them into a small disposable controller and let THAT toggle them on and off, using the apex as a back up?". The argument Ryan makes is that toggling an outlet will induce wear and tear and shorten the lifespan, so its better to sacrifice the heater controller rather than the apex EB8 32. The argument Neptune makes is that the outlet duty cycles in the EB8 32 is so high that the little toggling you'll be doing (even if its 100x a day or more) isn't relevant. From a laziness standpoint, I want to believe Neptune, but without knowing the technical specs and mfg of their outlets we can't know for sure, and I doubt they'd release that info to the public. I wonder if they would release it to me under and NDA..... anyway, ill probably be lazy and leave it as it is, although in a month or so I might pull the logs and do some math on toggles per day, and use that to inform my decision.


Also, question for y'all following along. I'm doing awc w tropic marin pro salt. dKh is 7.0 (stated and tested). I want to run my tank at 8.5 dKh. From an alk stability standpoint, is it better to try to spike my NSW reservoir to 8.5-ish and then awc, and then dose the tank via 2-part to account for coral consumption, OR is it better to just awc w the 7.0 dKh water, then dose the tank 2-part to compensate for coral consumption AND lower dKh water being used? Thoughts? Please recall that dosing the NSW reservoir isn't as precise as it might be, because the norwesco container im using isn't finely graduated.
I bought into that coolaid early on and have since decided to abandon the polarized notion that a relay can't switch a few thousand times a year and not last. There is some truth to advanced wear for high loads. Not sure what sized heaters you're using but consider this little option. I'm using 600w heaters and will be putting a couple if these together and just using the Apex to control the heaters.

Thread 'Outlet Saver (Aquarium Engineering Tank Saver, Relay outlet, Digital Aquatics Expansion Socket)' https://www.reef2reef.com/threads/o...let-digital-aquatics-expansion-socket.704207/
 
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Great setup. You planned it well. I need to clean my kessil380. Did you use any electrical cleaners, or sprays? I’ve never cleaned a circuit board, but I’m sure mine looks like yours before cleaning.
 
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NewReefer42

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I bought into that coolaid early on and have since decided to abandon the polarized notion that a relay can't switch a few thousand times a year and not last. There is some truth to advanced wear for high loads. Not sure what sized heaters you're using but consider this little option. I'm using 600w heaters and will be putting a couple if these together and just using the Apex to control the heaters.

Thread 'Outlet Saver (Aquarium Engineering Tank Saver, Relay outlet, Digital Aquatics Expansion Socket)' https://www.reef2reef.com/threads/o...let-digital-aquatics-expansion-socket.704207/
Sorry, maybe I haven't had enough coffee yet, but you mean that you now believe that "a relay CAN indeed switch thousands of times without higher risk of failure", at least for our purposes?

I think I'm in that boat too tbh. And quite frankly, if I burn out a relay after 5 years, I'll just switch outlets lol. I should pull the logs though. Also, I'm using 2x300W heaters. one turns on maybe 50% of the time, the other just pops on once a day or so, at least from my cursory overview when I glance at the Apex dashboard (it could be more, the logs will tell).
 
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NewReefer42

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Great setup. You planned it well. I need to clean my kessil380. Did you use any electrical cleaners, or sprays? I’ve never cleaned a circuit board, but I’m sure mine looks like yours before cleaning.
Thanks. I just used a handful of Q-tips and a damp towel. I'm super comfortable cleaning electronics, no fancy tools are required. I actually rinsed the housing in the sink, tap water, w the faucet. The fan was the hardest part, but a can of compressed air would have helped the most. A tip: do it outside and with a shop vac nearby. I was able to put the shop vac on one side of the thing I was cleaning and turn it on, then just use the Q-tip to push salt/dust/dirt through the system and automatically get sucked up. Helped with keeping the work area clean too (which for me is my kitchen table, so that's important for marital health reasons lol). GL, its actually pretty easy to do.
 

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Sorry, maybe I haven't had enough coffee yet, but you mean that you now believe that "a relay CAN indeed switch thousands of times without higher risk of failure", at least for our purposes?

I think I'm in that boat too tbh. And quite frankly, if I burn out a relay after 5 years, I'll just switch outlets lol. I should pull the logs though. Also, I'm using 2x300W heaters. one turns on maybe 50% of the time, the other just pops on once a day or so, at least from my cursory overview when I glance at the Apex dashboard (it could be more, the logs will tell).
i do believe that, I can't say with any data or definitive proof, but relays in general, even the lesser quality ones are rated to cycle in the 100's of thousands and better ones in the millions. Wish we could get insight into which ones they use but my risk tolerance is enough to let me go on that assumption. Higher loads accelerate the wear to be sure, what that delineation is I don't know but I'm sure it's fair on a 600w heater vs a 300w heater. I've been monitoring my 600w and the apex is only flipping that on and off a total of 12 times a day. that's less than 5k switches per year. I'm comfortable with that risk. If I'm wrong I lose one outlet for my foolish bravery. Since I switched to using the Apex my temp consistency has never been more accurate. I will likely put a secondary backup temp sensor in just for giggles as redundancy. If the entire Apex brain goes out, I have inkbirds on hand to get me thru the interim. I rotate my two heaters on 12 hour shifts in a 24 hour period so it smooths out the wear on them and I always know they are both functional if one ever goes out I don't have to worry about hoping my 'backup' is good to go. Just how I'm approaching it now, which is an about face from how I went in.

Programming i use to control both heaters. A/B just switch the time schedule to cover the other 12 for B. So this will call for the off shift pump if temps get too low, the assumption being your current heater is broke. PumpStatus simply shuts both down if your pumps aren't running.

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NewReefer42

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Right, I think I agree with you then. I don't cycle the heaters, but they're just titanium rods so I'm not as worried about them as I would be with traditional glass ones. And I agree with the risk assessment, worst case scenario I lose two outlets after 5-10 years, whatever.
 
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Second shipment of CuC arrived today. All alive and pretty healthy tbh. Shrimps and crabs were crawling around, and some snails were climbing on the bags. Gor them about 2pm local time, put them in QT system after work about 5pm. I didn't get a chance to actually inspect them, just looked at them as I was transferring them to the QT tank. All the shells look clean (no vermetids, the bane of my existence), but will do a close inspection and get some more pics this weekend. They're being kept at 82F just in case of ich. I'm thinking of only doing a 60 day QT, but not fully decided yet, anyone have opinions on this? My number 1 goal is pest prevention, that includes aiptasia, vermetids, and the other common ones, as well as the ultra baddies (dinos, uronema, etc). Sorry for the crappy pics, it's all I could get in the time alotted.
 

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ReefCoder

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So are you running 3 QTs? One for fish, CUC and corals? I am trying to avoid having more than one. I will be ordering my fish from Elliot at Marine Collectors but I still need to figure something out for CUC and corals. Part of the reason I am doing this build is because of vermetid infestation in my 40.

My tank and gear is ordered - tank should be here Monday! Was pleasantly surprised as I only ordered on Sunday of this week :)
 
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NewReefer42

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So are you running 3 QTs? One for fish, CUC and corals? I am trying to avoid having more than one. I will be ordering my fish from Elliot at Marine Collectors but I still need to figure something out for CUC and corals. Part of the reason I am doing this build is because of vermetid infestation in my 40.

My tank and gear is ordered - tank should be here Monday! Was pleasantly surprised as I only ordered on Sunday of this week :)
Yes, unfortunately. I have the frag tank that is built into the system, a QT tank in my guest room, and a CuC invert QT tank in my garage. That's only a temporary setup however, as the tang can move out next week and I can move the CuC over. Most likely what will happen is I'll move the CuC tank somewhere temp stable (garage is unheated un-A/C) and get another fish for the fish QT. I talked to Marine Collectors but honestly their prices were too high for me to justify. I also wasn't really convinced by their QT procedure (its only 2 weeks long, so how good can it actually be?). I have also sent and email (twice) to TSM aquatics asking specific details about their QT procedures, but they have yet to get back to me. If I cannot find a place that will "do it right" imo, then I'll just do it myself, which I do NOT want to do, but will if I have to. A 2 week QT is borderline pointless, would you pay $150 for a green chromis for that? I'm not. :/ I really wish this hobby had a "Certified pest free" program with oversight. C'mon BRS get on it, use that investor money to set it up! I'll build the quality inspection system for you for a nominal fee!

Also, grats on the new gear!

Also, once my frag system is up and running with no snail nukes, I'd be happy to grow out frags for people in a disease free, fish free system and ship it around (or you can pick up next time you're in the valley)
 
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Did some deep maintenance yesterday. Bought a maxi jet and used it to blow off all the rocks. Scraped the rear wall, overflow, and bottom free of all algae, then used a tube and an extra filter sock to suck it all up and filter it out. Water looks so much better now. Introduced the hippo tang to the tank in an acclimation box, so far the purple tang has only a passing interest. Also received sea lettuce from algae barn which is now in the tangs old QT, for 16 days. CuC sorely needed in this tank. Also ordered a blonde naso, sailfin desjardini, female lyretail anthias, and one spot foxface from Dr. Reef. Passed on the Achilles for now, I'll get him and a pair of phantom clowns in next order. No eta for them yet. For some reason, some nems aren't happy. I've been feeding them, but the green one split again, I'm now up to 7.

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The purple tang (Elisa) didn't seem to have too much interest in the hippo (Teddy) so I set him free today. There were a few squabbles for the first hour or two, but no biting, and nothing major. As of right now everyone is getting along. He looks so little in the tank!
 

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Cleaned out the frag tank since it was just an algae and pest fest. Only 3 frag survivors, but one looked like it was being eaten so I tossed it, it wasn't super healthy anyway and it had some pests in it that I dont think I could have removed. The remaining two frags got removed from their plugs, cleaned, and put on tiles in the display. Also moved the sea lettuce to a hamster ball and put that in the newly cleaned frag tank. Then moved over the inverts that were in the garage QT into bedroom QT in preparation for the fish shipment. If the fish come this week as planned (minus the naso tang), the sea lettuce will go in the display, the sailfin, foxface, and anthias into the newly setup garage QT, and the chromis will go into the frag tank. I also added a doser to the frag tank so I can keep it at like 8-8.5 dKh like the display, in preparation for the next batch of coral, which might be in about a month. I also redid some of the electric bc I was running out of apex outlets on the QT EB8 (stupid BRS dosers only have like a 6 ft cord, I need at least 10 I think, oh well). Before and after pics attached, and bonus sexy shrimp (I think I lost a crab though, and a few snails). Also, I had a brilliant idea how to build deflectors for the XR15s. Will be doing that this week. Stay tuned....
 

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Made some deflectors for the lights out of vinyl folders from office depot. Hung them using black zip ties. Of course, to hang them cleanly I needed the larger zip ties, and when I was constructing the stand my daughter connected like 200 of them together so I ran out today when I needed 4 more, ugh, lol. Also transferred the algae ball over. Lastly, my phosphate hannah checker died today. Should I get a replacement or is there a better low range test kit out there? Last I checked, phosphate was 0.08ppm. The nems are doing great since I've been feeding them omega brine twice a week. :)

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Replaced another fleece roll. I think it's bc I'm in the ugly stages, and turned it on too early. I'm also going through filter socks like crazy. Fully clogged after like 3 days! Water looks clear though, so that's good. Installed Ca doser lines and solution today, will start dosing Ca tonight after tonight's measurement. Also bought a new hanna phosphate checker, but it hasn't come yet. 2 more weeks for the invert QT to finish (6 weeks at 82F) and they can get moved over. Frag tank alk is 8.3 and ready for new corals. If today wasn't Easter I'd go buy some today. Still no status update on fish, I can't get ahold of Mike. :(
 

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