Tank Reboot

Discussion in 'General Discussions and Advice' started by RossK, 29 May 2016.

  1. RossK

    RossK

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    After having endless high nitrate issues and a tank crash while we were on holiday, my daughter decided she wanted to switch her aquarium to a planted aquarium (her younger sister runs a successful nano planted aquarium). Her old setup was eventually fixed using Orca Biocubes, but there was still a whole lot lacking...That's until she saw the setup belonging to @Express Reef.

    A pic of the old tank:
    200 liter with corner box overflow, small sump and two dual 39W T5's.
    IMG_6027.JPG
    We then stripped the tank completely. The corner overflow was retained, and fitted with a Durso stand-pipe inside the box.
    IMG_6129.JPG
    The empty tank:
    IMG_6110.JPG

    The old sump:
    IMG_6111.JPG

    @Express Reef designed and built the new sump, unfortunately due to limited space, we managed a built in top-up tank, but could not get space for a refugium. The new fuge will be built into a separate tank on the side of this tank. We've only got about 250mm wide, so it's going to be a very narrow custom built tank.

    New sump (water test):
    IMG_6112.JPG

    A few mods to the new sump to prevent as much salt creep as possible:
    IMG_6123.JPG

    Sump installed:
    IMG_6127.JPG


    Sump plumbing and wiring:
    IMG_6128.JPG

    IMG_6138.JPG
    Once the plumbing and wiring was sorted out, we then programmed her reef angel.

    More on this in my next post. I'm limited with the amount of pics per post...
     
    Last edited: 29 May 2016
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  3. RossK

    RossK Thread Starter

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    Tank Reboot (part 2)...

    Reef angel set up was easy. We have the analog version which didn't match the Meanwell LDD drivers. After much reading we found that the REV 8.1 board in the relay box is capable of analogue and PWM, it's as easy as switching a jumper.
    IMG_6160.JPG

    The dimming still did not work, so after more reading and loads of information from @Francois, I realised I was not going to get it to work without some modifications. Out came the oscilloscope, the test results were rather surprising. The LDD drivers need a PWM of 5 volts and the RA outputs 10 volts. Also, even though I switched the jumpers (I found them set to PWM), I was still getting a 0 to 10v analogue dimming signal. I then removed the final drive dual opamp on the dimming signals, this resulted in a dimming signal of 0 to 5 volts. Right level, wrong type of signal. A bit more investigation, and I found that the RA indeed can do both types of signals, the labels on the board are reversed. So the jumpers were reversed to select analogue, and a beautiful PWM signal was observed on the output. At that point I was ready to give in, especially with the tank owner (my daughter) asking if I was ever going to get her RA to work again.

    A few pics of the RA mods:
    IMG_6151.JPG
    IMG_6156.JPG

    I glued the opamp to the board, in the case that I may want to revert to 10 volt outputs later:
    IMG_6157.JPG

    The LED lights are courtesy of @Francois and @Express Reef. We changed out a few LED chips, added a few more (thanks to @CW). As we progress the LED's will be updated to suit what ever my daughter wants to stock the tank with.
    IMG_6162.JPG
    IMG_6163.JPG

    We retained the T5's which run on timers. The idea is to run them for about two hours at midday. Will have to wait to see how that works out with the LED's.
    IMG_6167.JPG

    Pic of the "boss lady" getting familiar with the RA:
    IMG_6173.JPG

    more later...
     
    Last edited: 29 May 2016
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  4. TaahirS

    TaahirS MASA Contributor

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    Looks great. Anymore pics of the T5/LED unit? I'm thinking of doing something similar.
     
  5. reefer101

    reefer101 Archangel

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    Awesome turn around
     
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  6. RossK

    RossK Thread Starter

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    Sorry, I didn't take much in the way of pics for the lights. The LED unit is a DIY unit, the T5's are Odyssea dual 39w. It all just fit's in snugly into the canopy.
     
  7. RossK

    RossK Thread Starter

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    So, back to the rest of the tank reboot...

    We had a few pieces of live rock that we scrubbed and washed out in the old tank water, then soaked in RO water. The idea was to kill off anything in the live rock, we did save a few pieces that went into the QT tank with the live stock. This is for seeding later. My daughter made the outline of the tank in masking tape so she could arrange the rock in the way that she wants. This will obviously change as we need to add quite a few kgs of rock to this setup. She wanted to do it, so I just went with it. We chucked out quite a bit of the old rock as it was more sandstone and not suitable.
    IMG_6176.JPG
    IMG_6178.JPG


    Filter sock in place (again thanks to @Express Reef for the sample)
    IMG_6180.JPG

    And spare filter socks in full production (my sewing skills improved by a million percent)
    Socks.JPG

    The tank was filled, salinity adjusted, live rock from QT moved back to the DT and the skimmer setup.
    IMG_6207.JPG

    We were threatened with extinction if we left the place like that! My wife was happy once the clean up operations were completed.
    IMG_6209.JPG
    IMG_6213.JPG

    Ended up making a perspex splash cover to go over the filter sock compartment.
    IMG_6211.JPG
    IMG_6216.JPG
    IMG_6215.JPG

    So it's all up and running, waiting on the cycle now. Hopefully it won't be that long as we "jump started" the process with live rock from the QT.

    Just a special THANK YOU to a few reefers out there who made our lives a lot easier:

    @Express Reef for getting my daughter to "believe" in reefkeeping again, and for just about EVERYTHING else we needed.
    @Goby for the RW15
    @Francois for loads of info on LEDs
    @CW for supplying some of the LEDs
    @Andrewvdm for the RA at a great price
     
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  8. Express Reef

    Express Reef

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    Looking good can't wait to see the tank in a few months time. Definitely a huge improvement, believe the tank will look stunning once stocked again. Patience and take it slow... all good things come with time... Keep us updated as the tank progress.
     
  9. RossK

    RossK Thread Starter

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    Will be looking for about 15 to 20 kgs of live rock as soon as I'm back in the country (3 weeks time).
    Also, if anyone can suggest where I can buy wood with the veneer as used on this tank (looks like supawood), that info would be much appreciated. I was promised a cabinet to fit as per my sizes by two LFS's, looks like they are not interested. I even tried the place my daughter bought the tank from, all I get are promises. This will be for the refugium tank on top and to house the controls, kalk reactor and doser inside.
     
    Last edited: 29 May 2016
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  10. RossK

    RossK Thread Starter

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    Definitely going to take it slow and easy. And she has already said she wants to be very selective with stocking the tank.
     
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  11. CW

    CW

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    Hey @RossK
    This looks nice and neat.
    I like it. Keep us up to date on the progress.

    Nice setup
     
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  12. Morak

    Morak

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    Looks great! Is there a metal stand in the cabinet to support the tank after removing that centre support?
     
  13. RossK

    RossK Thread Starter

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    Thanks.
    No stand. This worried us initially, but the whole cabinet (including the back panel) is solid 16mm supawood. It does not flex at all. Tank has been running for more than a year now.
     
    Last edited: 29 May 2016
  14. FoundNemo

    FoundNemo

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    nice reboot... looks awesome best of luck
     
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  15. Vleis Visagie

    Vleis Visagie

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    Looking good,

    another vaalpark guy, I LIKE IT
     
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  16. RossK

    RossK Thread Starter

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    Actually, it's another Vaalpark girl. It's my 14 year old daughter's tank.:thumbup:
     
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  17. Vleis Visagie

    Vleis Visagie

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    LOL true that, my bad.

    Hehehehe
     
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  18. RiaanP

    RiaanP Moderator

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    [​IMG]
    I would make the divider between skimmer and return higher. The TS2 skimmer can stand in water that is up to just 1cm below the outlet pipe. And then you do not need those donot rings as there would be no splashing. And moving the ATU sensors up higher.

    Reason for this suggestion is that one day your ATU will decide not to work. Will give you just that little bit more time before the return pup runs dry.

    Actually not even necessary to increase the divider's height. Just move the ATU sensors up to just below the TS2 outlet.
     
  19. Brendan6

    Brendan6

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    Another vaalie. Greetings! Very neat build you have going here, if you need some frags of some of those sticky things when the tank is up and running, gimme a shout. While I moved away from the vaal, my parents have a lovely tank running and often have a few frags lying around due to accidental fragging lol.
     
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  20. RossK

    RossK Thread Starter

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    Thanks @RiaanP. I did have the skimmer deeper in the previous setup, it didn't work as well. I had to make a stand out of egg crate to lift it. My daughter has always done manual top ups previously, so if the ATU does not work, she will go back to that until I can rectify the problem. I can always fab a bracket out of perspex to move the switches, should not be a big issue. I can give this a try to see what happens. The splashing doesn't come from the skimmer outlet, I made a cover for the top of the filter sock, so no more issues with splashing...
     
  21. RossK

    RossK Thread Starter

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    Greetings @Brendan6.
    Thanks, we will definitely take you up on your offer. Talking to my daughter last night, she wants to keep a few softies, so if your parents have any, we would be glad to pay for them. She does want a pin cushion and a pulsing xenia, so those are first on her list.
     
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