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Derek's 130gal (525xl)

SepToob

Supporting Member
Tank looks beautiful. Nicely done!

How did you come to realize your STN was related to too much light?

After doing some lighting research and realizing my lights were on (T5s + LED hybrid) for too long @ 12hours and too high of PAR @ 350+. I since reduced the T5s to just 6 hours a day, have the LEDs on a low ramp, and lowered their intensity so my PAR is in the 250-270 range during the peak 6 hour period, and <100 during the off hour ramp periods.

It could be other factors as well - but a lot of the SPS that had stunted growth and brown color immediately started to color up again once I made this change, and all of the Acropora I have added to the tank since seem to be hanging on now.
 

SepToob

Supporting Member
Here's a video of my flow, I have achieved a really nice "back and forth" oscillating wave:


This is accomplished primarily by two Tunze 6095s on the left side of the tank, one in master and one in slave so their timed pulses are synced:
IMG_7039.jpeg


You need a tunze cable to connect the controllers of the pumps, then there's a function that slowly cycles through pulse durations, which you pause once the right wave is achieved, locking in the pulse duration. It creates an effect similar to the Tunze Wavebox, and I've found it's very effective!

On the opposite side I've got an M40 in reef crest mode to keep some additional random, turbulent flow around the tank:

IMG_7040.jpeg


This setup took many weeks of tweaking and iteration, but I'm pretty happy with the result. The oscillating wave affects the entire tank, making all of the LPS sway and virtually eliminating deadspots anywhere. The Mp40 creates additional turbulence, particularly across the top for the SPS, and some random action around the bottom. The two return nozzles add a little flow insurance to the back part of the tank where it's the calmest.
 

MolaMola

Supporting Member
NICE! Question: what kind of swell is there up at the top of the tank? How much does the water height change at the top edge? I have never tried anything interesting with flow and have always had dead spots, I think. Also have always been worried about stress on tank from back and forth motion. Your setup has produced great looking movement!
 

SepToob

Supporting Member
NICE! Question: what kind of swell is there up at the top of the tank? How much does the water height change at the top edge? I have never tried anything interesting with flow and have always had dead spots, I think. Also have always been worried about stress on tank from back and forth motion. Your setup has produced great looking movement!
Thanks! :) There is some swell at the top on the far left/ride sides - I'd say it rises about 0.5" from level and falls the same, so maybe a total swell of 1" or a bit more? I can crank this up or down but feel like this is a good spot.

I've also thought about stress on the tank - and I've read about this theory everywhere oscillating waves come up. I've never heard of a tank failure because of it (though I've read about lots of tank failures...rarely do they identify a true root cause).

One thing I've noticed though, is that even though the surface swell is greatest on the sides, the most intense water movement is actually in the center of the tank, as revealed by the corals. My video above is from the center - and the corals nearer the edge move less, it's almost like the wave goes to zero the closer you get to the left/right tank walls. I would love for a fluid mechanics physicist to explain what is going on in our tank with these waves! I have a hunch though that it's not as hard on the tank as we suspect - but I'm not really sure how to put this into words or even test this theory. But I think about the fact that there's about 1,000lbs of water in my tank, and if it were really "sloshing" back and forth (which is what I intuitively think an oscillating wave is) the whole stand would move, and that's not what is happening, so there are more subtle things at play I think.

I am nervous about the robustness of Red Sea tanks in general...and plan to upgrade to a Crystal Dynamic in the next year or so regardless.
 

popper

Supporting Member
Thoroughly thought out. Unlike me. Can you share how you created the pods and phyto?

Started culturing pods and phyto, since I knew the big tank would have a mandarin and wrasses:
IMG_5963.JPEG
 

SepToob

Supporting Member
Thoroughly thought out. Unlike me. Can you share how you created the pods and phyto?

Started culturing pods and phyto, since I knew the big tank would have a mandarin and wrasses:
IMG_5963.JPEG
I bought the Poseidon Reef Systems kit...probably unnecessary in retrospect but it does work pretty well. I think you can make your own set up for a lot cheaper but I was lazy.

Then you just need pods (I use AlgaeBarn - ecopods or galaxypods) and phyto (I got some real cheap phyto from ebay). There are a lot of guides on how to do this online so I won't go into too much detail, but basically you have a culture of pods going in one jar and a culture of phyto going in the other. Pods are so expensive this was a cheaper way to get a large population going. But honestly, you really just need to seed the tank once or twice and dose phyto directly into the tank to get the population started.

It's critical to have a refugium with some rockwork and/or chaeto for the pods to live in safely. Lots of rock and sand in the DT helps as well. After a couple weeks of dosing phyto my pod population exploded. I've done this once or twice more over the last few months just to ensure a stable population, but the idea is that it becomes self sustaining once there's enough pods and enough food (detritus, algae, etc).

I think pods are a super critical part of a new tank (or any tank's) ecosystem.
 

SepToob

Supporting Member
I never really posted my parameters so here they are:

SG: 1.028
Temp: 77-80
PH: 7.6-7.9

Alk: 7.8
Ca: 430
Mg: 1490

No3: 3
Po4: 0.1



My Hanna pen was giving me false reading apparently on salinity for awhile, I recently got a Milwaukee which is supposed to be more trustworthy and it's showing 1.028. Haven't noticed any issues with the slightly high salinity so I'll just let it gradually decrease via skimmer and testing.

I'm using the balling method, with an Alkatronic controlling a Dosetronic that manages TM A, B, and C. I've also mixed TM Elements A and K into the Alk/Ca mixes per their guidelines. My big 3 have been rock solid using this method now for many weeks. Love the Alkatronic - I'll share my thoughts on that in a later post. My first ICP test showed everything pretty much optimal as well. I'll do another one in a month or two.

My Nitrate and Phosphate were really low for a long time (~1 or less no3 and .01 or less po4), but have started to creep up. I think this is because of the tangs I recently added, and/or that I stopped dosing MB7 daily. I'm really trying to minimize what I'm dosing, so I'm going to let these nutrients creep up and see if/when they stabilize. I've added Chaeto back to the sump (it died off before) and we'll see if that makes any difference. I'm using a Clarisea 5000 fleece roller and a Nyos 120 skimmer for filtration.

PH has always been low - I've tried opening the door (we have a lot of humans and pets) for fresh air, I added a Co2 scrubber, and now Chaeto. Nothing really makes it budge so I'm probably gonna just try not to worry about it. I just listened to an early Reef Beef episode where Rich, Ben, and the guest all basically said they've never seen any real observable benefit from chasing PH up to 8.2 anyway.

The new tangs seem to be getting along! The PBT gives the Yellow Tang (biota) some trouble occasionally which I'm keeping an eye on...

 

SepToob

Supporting Member
As noted above, I've added a ball of Chaeto back into the sump. I really like the idea of having it as habitat for microfauna, and already see a ton of creepy crawlies living in it. I noticed, though, that my iron has suddenly fallen to zero (again). Some of my SPS are (maybe coincidentally) starting to look grumpy as well, like the plating montipora.

I have some Red Sea Colors Iron - but it seems to require an enormous amount of it to get iron back up. Like the little bottle I got in the colors kit is already almost empty. How does anyone keep their iron up with Chaeto in the system? Interested in folks thoughts on this, particularly from those of you with minimal water changes. I read something about perhaps dosing fergon tablets?
 

rdriggett

Supporting Member
As noted above, I've added a ball of Chaeto back into the sump. I really like the idea of having it as habitat for microfauna, and already see a ton of creepy crawlies living in it. I noticed, though, that my iron has suddenly fallen to zero (again). Some of my SPS are (maybe coincidentally) starting to look grumpy as well, like the plating montipora.

I have some Red Sea Colors Iron - but it seems to require an enormous amount of it to get iron back up. Like the little bottle I got in the colors kit is already almost empty. How does anyone keep their iron up with Chaeto in the system? Interested in folks thoughts on this, particularly from those of you with minimal water changes. I read something about perhaps dosing fergon tablets?
Brightwell has a product called chetogrow. I’ve heard of people having success with it. Not sure if it adds nitrates thought.
 

RandyC

Supporting Member
Brightwell has a product called chetogrow. I’ve heard of people having success with it. Not sure if it adds nitrates thought.

ChaetoGro has no nitrogen or phosphorus.

Guaranteed Analysis​

0-0-1.30; Potassium (K) as Soluble Potash (K2O) (min) 1.30%; Boron 0.009%; Carbon 0.005%; Calcium 0.14%; Chlorine 0.39%; Cobalt 0.0004%; Iron 0.1%; Magnesium 0.4%; Manganese 0.0475%; Molybdenum 0.004%; Sulfur 0.16%; Zinc 0.002%.

Sources of Nutrients​

Potassium sulfate, Calcium chloride, Magnesium sulfate, Potassium iodide, Iron EDTA, Zinc sulfate, Manganese chloride, Sodium tetraborate, Cobalt chloride, Sodium molybdate.

Other Ingredients​

Purified water, Nickel chloride.
 

Darkxerox

Supporting Member
There a reason these companies don't just use iron sulfate instead of the chelated iron? Would be extremely cheap to make yourself.
 

SepToob

Supporting Member
My current skimmer is not cutting it - Nyos Quantum 120. I don't know if my bioload is considered "medium" or "heavy" - probably somewhere in between, but the Nyos is not rated anywhere near my system size for either which is why I'm struggling to keep nutrients down now that I'm fully stocked (or at least part of the reason, I think).

I don't have a lot of space in the sump, so I ordered the Deltec 1000i - has a really small footprint compared to similarly rated skimmers, has a drain hose, and seems to be well made. Anyone have experience with these skimmers?

https://deltecdirectusa.com/products/deltec-1000i-in-sump-protein-skimmers

I love Tunze stuff but their bigger skimmers have giant footprints (the 9415 is 14"x12"), and no drain hoses!
 

SepToob

Supporting Member
I love it! It runs great, no break-in period. Pulls a ton of gunk including much larger particles (like entire bloodworms) that my previous skimmer did not touch. The skimmate is unbelievably smelly which I think is a good sign. I did not smell anything nearly so foul with the last skimmer. This one offends the whole family!

My favorite parts, however, are the built in neck wiper and the drain hose. These two features combined mean I haven't had to remove the collection cup a single time. I just give it a wipe, drain the skimmate into a nalgene bottle and toss it in the sink.

The wiper is game changing, I don't know why more skimmers don't have this feature. I had to constantly clean the gunk out of the neck of the collection cup with the previous skimmer to keep it running efficiently. Now I just twist the lid around a couple of times and the neck is cleaned.
 
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Darkxerox

Supporting Member
I love it! It runs great, no break-in period. Pulls a ton of gunk including much larger particles (like entire bloodworms) that my previous skimmer did not touch. The skimmate is unbelievably smelly which I think is a good sign. I did not smell anything nearly so foul with the last skimmer. This one offends the whole family!

My favorite parts, however, are the built in neck wiper and the drain hose. These two features combined mean I haven't had to remove the collection cup a single time. I just give it a wipe, drain the skimmate into a nalgene bottle and toss it in the sink.

The wiper is game changing, I don't know why more skimmers don't have this feature. I had to constantly clean the gunk out of the neck of the collection cup with the previous skimmer to keep it running efficiently. Now I just twist the lid around a couple of times and the neck is cleaned.
I have a 400i and a 600i and agree! Super reliable and quiet skimmers. Only downside is that the 400i doesn't have the CSM neck wiper.
 
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