Measure twice and cut once …..

Neil H

Retired Moderator
Joined
11 May 2008
Posts
2,794
Reaction score
58
Location
JHB
Hi Guys, I have been on the site for about a month, learning learning learning ….. as with many of you I started out with fresh water fish and am now moving on to Marines…. What a fantastic resource this site has proved to be !!! :thumbup:

Measure twice and cut once ….. something my Dad taught me many years ago… and something that is very applicable to this hobby….. with that in mind, I thought I would create this post in order for the more experienced people out there to point out any glaring weaknesses in my design.:nono:

My aim at this stage is to ultimately have a full reef tank, but to start modestly with more softies than sps

Firstly the tank specs …. The tank is 1.2m x 60cn x 75cm. (LWH) made of 10mm glass (base is 20mm)

The tank has been drilled at the back left, the overflow box still needs construction... what is the black stuff guys put onto the glass of the overflow to hide the piping??.

The Stand was custom built out of 50mm square tubing and is 75cm high.

So lets start with the tank aspects ….

I plan on putting in a durnso (sp) pipe into the overflow to reduce noise, this will be made from 1.5 inch pvc piping, I will have an egg crate grid to prevent livestock going into the sump.

The lighting … INITIALLY I have planned on 4 to 6 T5’s with reflectors …. 1/2 white and 1/2 blue (10 000K) and possibly a moon light as well. I may upgrade when I have enough sps to warrant it ….. I am trying to avoid the cost of the chiller at the moment, thus avoiding the MH’s at this point. My T5’s will sit about 14cm from the water surface. The T5’s will be on a timer in opposite sequence to the sump light. I intend having 2pc fans in the lid for heat reduction.

The water will be returned to the tank via a 20mm pvc pipe entering the top back of the tank lid. At this stage I am not sure how to distribute this water, my current plan is to route the return water from the back right of the tank via pvc piping to two distribution points in the front of the tank (with holes drilled to avoid back siphoning) … is this advisable??.. my logic here is that I want the return water to enter the tank as far away from the overflow as possible, thus cycling more of the tank volume in a given period?

In terms of the tank itself, I plan on 2 or 3 powerheads for water circulation…. Given the 550L est water volume, what sort of pump output should I aim for here?

I will be using pvc piping to aid in the stability of the LR in the display tank and plan on having a thin layer of sand on the bottom … not crushed choral


Ok then the SUMP….

I have already posted my design of the sump, but briefly the tank water will enter compartment #1 where the skimmer (Reektec TS2) and heater (1x300watt) are located, there is then an underflow and overflow into compartment #2 the DSB (with a energy saving light on a timer), from there, there is an overflow into compartment #3 which houses the return water pump. The pump I have should cycle the water through the sump at about 700L an hour … is this sufficient?. I have made provisions for power failures etc in the sump capacity.

Once the tank is up and running I will fit an extra pump into chamber #3 and run a DIY carbon and phos reactor, and eventually possible a calcium reactor …..

So there it is ….. I know it is a long post with many questions, but are there any glaring mistakes in the overall design????

Thanks in advance :peroni:
 

jacquesb

Retired Moderator
Joined
29 May 2007
Posts
17,868
Reaction score
71
Location
Cape Town
Hi Neil - this sounds awesome. BUT, I would go for the 6 T5's at least (8 would be even better if you could fit them on). Of which (if 6 only) I would only put on 2 blue/actinics and 4 white.
The corals need the white to grow... Blue is only for color..
 
Joined
3 May 2008
Posts
667
Reaction score
45
Location
Pretoria
Sounds very good,I think 4 t5s will be fine for the begining because fish and some soft corals dont need that intense light,I agree with jacques go for a third blue and the rest white lights,id go for seios as in tank pumps they are very good value for money,three seio 1100 should be enough
 
Joined
14 Nov 2007
Posts
2,241
Reaction score
5
Location
Northriding
Choose your globes carefully. They cost a bit extra but go for Giessmann or ATI. I compared 1 giessman to a daz globe and it was blindingly better.
 

Shaun

Retired Moderator
Joined
29 Aug 2007
Posts
5,274
Reaction score
15
Location
KZN
M2c.
Y are you using 20mm base no need too.
If you are later going to get SPS go for MH. Tank will be to deep for T5's alone. The max I would go for depth is 400 - 500mm. I have SPS with only T5's but my tank is not deep. just remember the deeper the tank the harder it is to work on. I would rather have a wider tank than a deeper one.

Good luck. sound Gr8.
 

Neil H

Retired Moderator
Joined
11 May 2008
Posts
2,794
Reaction score
58
Location
JHB
Hi All,

thanks for the feedback so far, some clarity on some of the comments...

in terms of lighting, thanks for the feedback.... would it be realistic to have the T5 combination (where two thirds are white and one third of the globes blue) and have the sps in the upper reaches of the tank, with the softies in the deeper parts of the tank ...? Are there specific lighting requirements for softies?

Gaboon point taken on the globe choice.... in the sump, the water flows into the first chamber then in an underflow, followed by an overflow into the DSB chamber.... I guess my post was not too clear on that point!

Thalion, I bought the tank 2nd hand at a good price.... so working with what i have !

Guys once again, thanks for the feedback, keep it coming
 

Shaun

Retired Moderator
Joined
29 Aug 2007
Posts
5,274
Reaction score
15
Location
KZN
Hi All,

Thalion, I bought the tank 2nd hand at a good price.... so working with what i have !
Must have missed that bit, speed reading.:)

I am currently using 6 T5's 4 White 2 Blue,but I have only 450mm to use, but you should have space for 8 T5's. Try go for different makes of t5's. (good makes).

Coral's have different lighting needs, some don't like, or need direct light. You will just have to do your homework first. I have a monti that is on the bottom of the tank (400mm deep) and is doing very well. So anything is possible.
 

Top