With My Brides Blessings, My 75 gallon Reef Build

Ferrell

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just a little background, mostly a fish only guy from the 80s and 90s. Transplanted the FLORIDA in 87 and built my first DT in ‘87, 100 gallon with your basic canister and UV sterilizer, a handful of t8 twisted bulbs and UG filter. Raised clowns, tangs, damsels, emopoer angel and only lost a couple fish in 5 years/3 moves. Then the new house. In the wall 300 man it was awesome but if I knew then... well you know the story. But it was awesome. Filtration in the garage, bioballs in the tower, crude by today’s standards, protein skimmer, ato, the works. Really enjoyed it although I built it too y’tall to maintain well etc. still a pleasure and kept fish healthy and happy. Then the moving, so scaled back, kept my prized fish and went back to 75 free standing in a smaller house, then my shop. Began moving around a bunch and no time to properly maintain so gave the fish away and broke it down. Fast forward to today, in KY finally and settled so ... here goes.

Equipment

75 gallon from glass cages.com
Synergy reef 16 at shadow overflow Bean animal style drains
30 gallon breeder sump
2-4” filter socks
Refugium , skimmer, return pump chambers
Skimz 167 dc skimmer
Varios 4 return pump
2-MP10 qd powerheads
2-150W finnex heaters

Started with the planning back in July. Received the tank from Glass cages in September and have been steady building on the weekends ever since. I am now to the filling part and running wires and wrapping a few things up. More photos to follow.

Thanks to all that have helped and responded to my post. Y’all have been a big help. And thanks to the BRS team who have answered many of my questions as well. Highly recommend purchasing your equipment from them.

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Ferrell

Ferrell

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Still working on the Aqua scape. I’ll see what it looks like with water around it and make adjustments from there. Thanks to all who helped witH your comments
 
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Ferrell

Ferrell

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Weekend of progress:
Filled with RO/DI and finally have water flow!!!
Patiently waited for temp to come up to 78.
Added HW Reefer salt
to get salinity to 35
Rinsed and placed Pink Fiji sand
Futzed around with the skimmer trying to keep it from running wild. Finally had to raise it up in the sump an inch. Breaking in beautifully now.
Ready to start cycling when I get everything stable (temp, salinity, flow)

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mdbannister

Ahh...the Reef Life
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Nice! Great start!
 
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Ferrell

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Thanksgiving weekend update: we have fish!
Started the cycle with Dr Tim’s one and only, and two blue reef chromis from Vince at most valuable pets in Lexington. Little guys were Qt’d for a couple weeks and it was time to get rolling. Of course when we put them in they immediately hid and didn’t see them til the next day when we floated a few pieces of brine shrimp around their hidey hole and they realized they we HONGRY!!! It was a blessing to see them eat!!!
So now just patiently waiting for the cycle to finish and decide what to do next.
Current parameters from 4th day:
35ppm
Ammonia 0.05
Nitrite 0.3
Nitrate 5
Ph 7.8
Also checking dKh, Ca, and Mg just for baseline
So happy we have swimmers

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I finally have some lighting and my Apex installed. Feeling like I got it pretty close to done now. Skinny the stand and a few tweaks here and there.
Almost cycled, ammonia at 0 now. Only running new lights (2 bulbs only) for a few hrs a day during cycle). Waiting for zero nitrites before a H20 change and a couple more fish for Christmas. A few corals in January if all goes as planned.

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Well it’s been a little while since an up date. Having my ugly stages now. Diatoms and algae but the CUC is doing it’s best. Got a couple of clowns about a month ago and a yellow goby and shrimp (which I see about once a week when they come out of the basement). All the fish are fat and sassy and I bought a few easy corals at a local swap this month. Couple of toadstools, encrusting monti, lettuce coral and a favia. All doing well and think I have them in good spots as they seem happy. So without further ado here’s my 2 month up date...

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I guess it is getting about time for an update so here goes. Had to banish the hermits to the sump as they were picking on my new frogspawn.... frogspawn you say? Why yes I guess I missed the fact that I received my first @WWC shipment around the first of Feb and they are spectacular. After easy acclimation and dip, to the frag rack. All good and bam on the aquascape done. But wait froggy not looking right. Doggone loner crab causing distress. Banished !!!! Messed with flow a bit to make everyone happy and not shredding the hammer and frogspawn. Sall good

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So then @WWC has their live sale on here and couldn’t resist. So long story short had live sale, eBay sales , and a couple friends m the store shipped 3/2. So now up to about 25-30 frags and I’m done til I start seeing so growth and insure keeping them stable. Momma wants some swimmers next so fish will be coming. Speaking of fish...well that’ll wait. Here they are...

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Added one more swimmer...Benny he’s doing an awesome job. Jumped right in and started working at the algae.

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Update: 3/19/18
Tank going into three days aid darkness combating a cyano outbreak. Did a thorough top layer gravel symphony to remove as much as possible and then Sunday night...lights out. I could post a big black blob LOL so will update more when everything comes to light.
 
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Thanks man. They’re looking ok. I took a peek today hope it takes care of things
 
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Ok a little update on the cyano. Turned the lights back on today (just the b+ and actinic) and viola! No more cyano. Kept the photo period down to three hours and will increase a bit each day until Saturday and then the b+ and c+ bulbs for a few hours until up to about 4hrs for channel two each day.
Everything and everyone is doing well

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Thanks
 
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Add my wife’s choice for next fish, Marshall Is Flame Angel. She’s jump right in and started making buds
 
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4/7/18 update
Well things were going along too smooth I guess. Went from overjoyed at receiving 4 nice chunks of montipora and pocillapora and one nice acan lord from vivid aquariums to the low of lows with my Flame and my Blenny dead on the bottom. Checked the two clowns and 2 chromis and all were affected with velvet. :(.
Wife and I went into emergency mode set up the HT chased the fish down (what a chore) and started our velvet protocol. I guess no more swimmers while the tank lays fallow for 6 weeks. From one crisis to the next as hard as we try. Guess I’ll just have to get more corals.
As a side note Dave and Brandon at Vivid Aquariums do an awesome job and have some great pieces and awesome customer service. Both healthy fish and corals.
 

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