And so my journey begins!

Discussion in 'New Members' started by cknipe, 26 Nov 2013.

  1. cknipe

    cknipe

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    Hi All,

    Ok so I've been on a bit of a shopping spree getting equipment, playing with water, the initial cycles, etc. and have more than likely waisted a bit of money in the process, but I think that it has been worth it. I have just placed the order for my new custom built marine tank and paid the deposit on my display tank to be delivered on Monday, pretty much the last piece of expensive kit outstanding (baring any live stock) :thumbup:

    I will be using a 190Ltr 3ft tank for my sump due to space constraints, which will be housing:
    - 2 x Reeftek TS1 skimmers (due to height restrictions, I can't use a TS2 and therefore opted for two TS1 units)
    - Carbon and PhosGuard. I will more than likely add some additional Bio balls as well.
    - Boyu external UV lamp (2 x 20W bulbs)

    The main display tank is a 420Ltr monster (140x60x50) made from 10mm glass with built in overflow. I currently already have 10Kgs of Fiji Live Rock, as well as 25Kgs of CalciumCarbonite for substrate. If I need more, I will more than likely top this up with a few additional KGs of beach sand. Also purchased two Sunsun Vibration pumps, and have two 3000Ltr/Hr and one 5800Ltr/Hr submirsible pumps that I will be using for various aspects in the sump.

    4 x 39W T5s are already existing from my tropical tank that used to be in the cabinet that has to be broken down, and I will just need to change two of the tubes (blue light), as well as heaters and so forth where I will be using existing equipment.

    So see this as my diary as my tanks and built progress. I am sure I will be asking allot of questions and be posting allot of pictures as we go down the journey into the marine world!!! Very excited, but at the same time also very scared and cautios as moving ahead slowly in small baby steps is not always a easy thing to do!

    Let's see how I progress and where I end up in the next couple of months ;)
     
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  3. Gareth0508

    Gareth0508

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    Congrats! And remember to post pics as you go!
     
  4. Tangster

    Tangster

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    Congratz.... :thumbup:
     
  5. Afinta

    Afinta Back 2 FW (", ) boooyaa!!

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    Congrats ........
     
  6. Bendor

    Bendor

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  7. D3m0n369

    D3m0n369

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    Welcome to the dark side.
     
  8. Nemeziz_za

    Nemeziz_za

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    Welcome, and enjoy the build experience!

    Remember to read and read and read, then plan and plan and plan ;)
     
  9. cknipe

    cknipe Thread Starter

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    Ok,

    So my monster 420Ltr *finally* arrived today. The bracing was put over the top of the overflow meaning I can't get my hand in there to attach the pipe fittings. LPS said they will do a 'house call' to come cut the bracing and fix that, no need to even empty it.

    To I have temporarily added two power heads, some air, filled with water, and currently waiting for my salt to mix in. Water has been treated with Stability and Prime. Once the salt levels are correct, I'll upgrade my 10KG of live rock to over 40KG, as well as add my substrate to the mix.

    Tomorrow I'll be taking my standard 3ft down to the LPS to have deviders fitted to build up the sump, and hopefully finish up the plumbing so she can 'come alive'

    This beast is huge! Can't wait to get this going :thumbup: But yes, patience is the name of the game, I know ;)

    2013-12-02 14.32.12.jpg

    2013-12-02 14.32.23.jpg
     
  10. cknipe

    cknipe Thread Starter

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    So the tank has been fixed, small sump (all I have space for) has been built, and basic plumbing completed.

    Sump has a Via Aqua internal filter (Bioballs, Carbon & Phosguard) rated at 1200Ltr/Hr. Two 200W Heaters (pretty much constantly off), and a 5800Ltr/Hr return pump to push the water up some 2 meters od back to the tank. The return also have a inline UV Filter, consisting of 2 x 20W bulbs.

    I am starting to see some purple colourations on my LR which is obviously the start of a small algea growth, and all water parameters are in check. The tank has pretty much finished the cycle and ready for live stock, but I am holding off on my cleanup crew.

    Evaporation sits currently at about 6Ltrs per day which I top up with RO water. My main concern is my water temprature though - even with the heaters constantly being off, my water temp is hovering arround the 28.5 to 30 degree mark, even in the middle of the night. Need to drastically address that and bring it down to arround 25/26. Currently looking at chillers vs. fans, as I'm not to keen on the fans due to the already high amount of evapouration I have.

    My second issue is that my Reeftek TS1 skimmers (I have two), are not skimming at all. They've been switched on and running in the sump for a week now. There are PLENTY of bubbles, external water level is in the middle of the reeftek logo, and internal water level about half way up the cup. Zero foam. I tried raising the skimmer to lower the external water level, as well as adjusted the internal water level to no avail. I'm not getting any skimming at all - collection cups as dry as can be.

    Thoughts, comments, suggestions always welcome.
     
  11. Daryl Norton

    Daryl Norton

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    Nice build so far, skimmers take some time to run in. Im no pro but this is what ive read.

    I have recently bought a TS2 and also waited a few days before it was skimming properly and this is in a tank with livestock.
     
  12. Snoek

    Snoek

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    I will come have a look and give some help with skimmer.
    I have an answer for the temp.
    Pm me with your details.
     
    Last edited: 10 Dec 2013
  13. cknipe

    cknipe Thread Starter

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    Added one 220VAC cabinet fan now, that is absolutely BLASTING air over the water. Will monitor the temps and more importantly the evapouration over the next couple of days to see whether it would be feasible for me to run 4 or 5 fans long-term.
    @Snoek - you've got a PM! Very glad to see a fellow Bothasiger here! Would love to come over and have a look at your tank too :p Thanks for the offer!

    EDIT: I *so* did not expect this. The fan's been running not even for 30 minutes yet and I'm down 1.5C OH MY HAT! As they say....
     
    Last edited: 12 Dec 2013
  14. Toolboysa

    Toolboysa Moderator

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    You can control the fans with temperature controller like a STC 1000. You will then be able to put your heaters on it aswell. Set your desired temp ranges and it will turn fans off to cool and heaters on when necessary

    As for the evaporation you can have a look into a ATU (automatic top up unit), and if you know your way round electronics possibly build one yourself
     
  15. cknipe

    cknipe Thread Starter

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    Yep. Have other pre-existing controllers more than adequate to control heat/cold. The fans are really just a proove of concept for me at this stage.

    FAN: Noisy (how more air is moved, how nosier they are), evaporation, cost of RO water for topups, etc
    Chiller: Expensive, electricity

    So I'm still just sussing things out. The one fan I have now is on loan from my fater in law, just checking things out for now before making a decision. It's a patience game, right :tt2:

    EDIT: Current temp: 26.5C
     
    Last edited: 12 Dec 2013
  16. cknipe

    cknipe Thread Starter

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    So the tank has been running stable 26.3 - 26.6 the whole day long. Currently howevering at 25.9 to 26.1... I'll more than likely add a second fan as the one alone is not enough to bring the water low enough for the heaters to kick in. In principal, it's working very good SO FAR and except for the fan noise, it is definately better than I expected.

    Strangely enough, evapouration was no problem during the entire course of the day (and what a hot day in CPT is was), but once the sun set and the ambient heat started cooling a bit - WHAM. Loads of liters out of my tank in a matter of a hour or two - it's almost like I sprung a leak, but the floors are dry.

    Will see exactly how much is gone tomorrow morning when I top up, but I would guess at this stage at least 4L - less than the usual 5 to 6L I normally top up, but still a good few hours to go.
     
  17. Snoek

    Snoek

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    I willcome have a look tomorrow. How much live rock do you have and whats the total liters of water your
    Tank takes with the sump
     
  18. cknipe

    cknipe Thread Starter

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    450 in the tank and another 90 in the sump, so let's work with 500 to round it. I have 15KG of Kenian at the moment, which I know is not enough. I want to build up on the LR over time towards arround 40KG of Fiji all in the display.

    You'll see tomorrow but the sump unfortunately is very small. Don't have the space for anything bigger.
     
  19. cknipe

    cknipe Thread Starter

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    So normally top up arround 5 to 6L per day. 1st day with the fan running and I topped up arround 8L. Again - I am surprised. Expected much worse. Temps also still doing good :1:
     
  20. cknipe

    cknipe Thread Starter

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    And so just a quick update...

    The fan and heaters has now been connected to my controllers. So no more fan running 24x7 (yay - just as my wife started moaning about the noise too). So fan only comes on now when required, and heaters on when the fan is off. I topped up a mere 4L this morning and my temp currently is sitting at 26.1C

    Additionally I added a bottle of special blend yesterday morning (thanks Aquatic Vision - @Rayhaan). Hopefully it works better than it smells, because oh my hat. Can somebody say rotten eggs!

    Water also tested this morning, and I don't believe my cycle has completed yet. Phosphates are high, but this is expected. A few other parameters aren't where it should be either yet, but hopefully I'll get there.

    pH: 8
    kH: 5
    NH4/NH3: 0
    NO2: 0.5
    NO3: 0
    PO4: 5

    I added some more PhosGuard this morning but as I don't have a reactor, I don't think it's going to come down that quickly.

    I also have some brown diatoms forming here and there on the rocks and glass since I added the special blend. The cycle obviously hasn't completed, but it's progressing well. So I'll just sit back and continue to monitor for now.
    @Snoek - would appreciate your help with the skimmers still when you have a moment please.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: 26 Nov 2015
  21. Toolboysa

    Toolboysa Moderator

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    Sounding good. You might want to get your kh up a little. 5 is pretty low and will cause some big ph swings
     
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