KLC’s 100g

KLC

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Feb 8, 2023
53
80
Goodyear, Az
Been a while since I had a tank running so needless to say I’m a little excited. I picked up a new rimless 100g and stand from a lfs back in November and got it going.

I will admit I DO NOT like the dry rock thing, even though a lot of my pieces are dry versions of the Pukani flavor of live rock, the first chance I get I am ditching all of it and replacing it with what I’m familiar with.

I had been out of the hobby long enough I was not in touch with any of the current trends with equipment. I’m researching things and buying what I think will serve me well. I did pick up an Aqua Excel skimmer and already had to needle wheel mod a Jebao 3500 pump for it, the Jebao was a direct replacement for the ViaAqua pump that came with it. It works very good!

I put together an old school 2 stage Ranco for 2 heaters and a chiller/ fans when the time comes to need cooling.

I have been using a Kamoer ATO that works well.

For lights I bought 2 ViparSpectra units and had my metal shop buddy make me a steel stand for them from a sketch I drew. I don’t care for hanging things from cables, especially n the kitchen and this is what I came up with. It serves its purpose.

Anyways here’s a few photos of what I’ve got so far. I’m going to stick it with SPS as soon as it’s ready for that. Can’t wait to get it stocked with some corals. New live rock may come first though.

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KLC

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Feb 8, 2023
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Goodyear, Az
I want to add that I did accomplish the goal of making this near silent. I used a gate valve on the drain to the sump and DC pumps and it is amazing how quiet it is. The fans on the lights are the loudest component lol.
 
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KLC

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Feb 8, 2023
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Goodyear, Az
The tank itself is supposed to be an Aqua Japan but I actually think it is part of a collection of tanks that Sea Side Aquatics has made for them, they were the wholesaler where it originated from. In the end it doesn't matter as it appears to be well made and has really good joints. I preferred the slim external overflow that is siliconed to the outside of the tank vs anything on the inside, I did have the choice. The bottom of the inside also has about a 1" piece of reinforcing glass siliconed in around the perimeter which makes the bottom seam a lot bigger. And just as a sidenote, when full of water the 12mm glass does have a slight bow in it at the top, but for a 4' tank I'm not alarmed by that.

The stand on the other hand was questionable. It is likely made by the same manufacturer who makes them all. It is 1" MDF with a plastic film applied over it and assembled with cam locks. The front was rather flimsy because there was nothing there to keep it from rocking, the back of it was fine. I added in some 6" long pieces of precision cut waferboard I had in the garage and tied all of it together with the 1" rib the supports the top just inside of the doors. By itself it wasn't super sturdy but with the tank full of water on top of it made it firm enough for my piece of mind. I have done a lot of cabinet work in the past and I do understand weight distribution and weight transfer, with all of the weight on it there isn't much room for movement. The 1" MDF sides are more than adequate for carrying the load, as long as it stays dry lol. I wasn't in a position to make a custom stand right now, I wanted something quick and easy and I figured what came with the tank was already engineered to support it. Yes I know of RS failures and my stand has already been retrofittted with a doubled 2" support in the center of the door opening.

Sometimes I'm a little long winded in my thoughts haha.
 
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KLC

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Feb 8, 2023
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Goodyear, Az
Here’s a photo of the needle wheel impeller I made for the Jebao 3500 DC pump I use with my skimmer. It works amazingly well and is not a noisy, vibrating POS like the Via Aqua that came with it. The Jebao was a direct fit once I removed the silicone feet on the base, the volute intake is even in the exact same spot, I did have to put about 10 wraps of teflon thread sealing tape in the venturi to take up some slack but other than that ot fit perfectly.

I ground the stock impeller down to the base and used styrene pegs super glued in. It draws in huge amounts of air and is still relatively silent. I have to throttle the pump back to 19 watts or else it thinks it’s running dry and shuts down, not something I was surprised with lol.

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KLC

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Feb 8, 2023
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Goodyear, Az
Thank you, I sketched the design out on a piece of scratch paper and had my metal fabricator buddy cut it out on his plasma table and weld it together. It's just rattle canned at the moment because the powder coater said he was 4 weeks out. In 4 or 5 months of use it isn't the least bit rusty so I'll likely never get around to coating it.
 
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KLC

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Feb 8, 2023
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Goodyear, Az
I've been doing some research on the Viparspectra 165w LEDs that I have, and it seems everyone's take on them is the same, the white channel is overpowering even when turned down to the minimum intensity. The older units had adjustments down to 1% but the latest version, which is what mine is, adjusts in 10% increments. Now that I had some initial PAR readings thanks to the club's meter I felt I needed to make some corrections. Following what others have done, I ordered some 3w 445nm and 470nm blue LEDs from Amazon and plunged down the rabbit hole head first.

It wasn't difficult to disassemble them, just some screws holding the top cover on and then some more to remove the panel that the diodes were soldered to. I studied the layout and placement of them all and proceeded to unsolder the ones I wanted to replace. They weren't too terribly hard to remove but definitely took some effort, not only are the 2 leads soldered on each side but the diodes themselves were soldered for heat dissipation purposes. After a bit of heat application from a large Weller soldering iron I got them off. The installation of the new ones was pretty straightforward with the exception of the diode body, I had no way to resolder them back to the board so I used a dot of thermal paste underneath them. In all I replaced 8 white LEDs with 2 wavelengths of blue on each light, it made a very dramatic difference in the PAR and visual look of them.

It reduced the PAR enough so that I am now able to now use the white channel at 30%, with the blue channel at 80% and gives the reef and very nice color. My PAR numbers are 450-480 right in the middle, 250 in a ring outside of that, and 150 at the sand bed. The lenses these lights use on the diodes does cause some hot spots right under them but it's nothing I can't work around. Others have removed the lenses altogether with a reduction of the hot spots but as anticipated that does reduce the PAR by a respectable amount. I will continue to refine what I am seeing with mine. I am only at 30% with the white channel and have a lot of intensity left to go if needed.

I would like to get a hold of some 420nm violet diodes and take the spectrum down a bit further but that particular color was a few weeks out with shipping. I'll keep ya'll posted on what I do with them, it is very promising considering the improvements made already.
 

KLC

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Feb 8, 2023
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Goodyear, Az
I was going to put up a short video I took but the website doesn't like hosting videos apparently. I'll upload it to youtube in a few days and just link it from here.

I wanted to share that I have finally rid my tank of dinoflagellates recently by removing the sandbed in it's entirety. I have not had to use a turkey baster on the rocks for at least 4 or 5 days now, and then when I do it is to blow off small patches of cyano. I added some more flow and have been dosing 2 capfuls of MB7 a day that seems to be steering the tank in a positive direction.

I have ramped up my light intensity to 100% on the blue channel and 60% on the white channel with very positive results. I'll leave it there for a few weeks and take action if I discover there are any unhappy corals, so far there aren't...
 
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KLC

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Feb 8, 2023
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Goodyear, Az
There’s not much traffic on the club forum so I’ll update my tank thread, it’s been a while.

I have been through some trials and tribulations with it for sure. I am sad to say that I had a serious RTN event a number of months ago that resulted in the loss of every coral that I had. I haven’t been able to pinpoint exactly what happened, myself and a few of the club members have some theories but that would be the topic of another discussion. I can say with certainty that we have moved on from that and am making some rapid progress towards a healthy and growing SPS garden.

There are a few things that I have improved upon that made a significant difference in the overall health of the corals. Most notably, I now run 3 Reefi Uno Pro 2.0 LED fixtures and I use a Litermeter III with remote pump modules for ATO and 2 part dosing.

The Reefi LEDs are amazing, the user interface is intuitive and easy to use, they are compact and silent, and they have been demonstrated to outperform a Radion XR30 G6 all with a 3 year warranty. The designer/owner Daniel Wu is a pleasure to work with, I’ve literally had dozens of conversations via email with him before and after the purchase. I have been using them with the default SPS program at about 72 watts peak, they’re capable of 260 watts at 100%.

The tank is now 15 months old and has gotten through all of the uglies, coralline and diatoms are now the dominant algae. I have managed to keep my nitrate at 12-15 and my phosphate at 0.03-0.06, I do manually dose them in calculated amounts a few times a week.

To my dismay I had to rehome the vlamingi tang, he was 6” and getting destructive with corals I had carefully mounted where I wanted them, lol. I am now enjoying a trio of tangs, a scopas, a blue and a blue eyed kole. They remarkably all get along with little issue between them. I also have a bristletail filefish which has the best personality of any fish I've owned.

So enough typing for now. I went back and looked at the photos after uploading and they aren't as in focus as I had hoped for, I am still playing with the lens filters to get them to come out crisp, one of these days I'll get it figured out. Yes my frag racks are cup lids, I needed something to temporarily hold them while I get my lowboy running.



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evolved

The Wrasse Guy
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I have been through some trials and tribulations with it for sure. I am sad to say that I had a serious RTN event a number of months ago that resulted in the loss of every coral that I had. I haven’t been able to pinpoint exactly what happened, myself and a few of the club members have some theories but that would be the topic of another discussion.
I've been there before, and I think anyone who's been in the hobby 10+ years probably has at some point, too.
I'll always be convinced one particular incident I had was bacterial in nature, but I'll never know for sure or be able to have a solid conclusion.
 
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1ocean

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Tank looks good...Like how it is comimg...Sal & Judy
 

KLC

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Feb 8, 2023
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Goodyear, Az
What I really want is a very big FOWLR, 10x4x4 perhaps.

I like the fish more than the corals, one of these days I’ll have a tank with some big angels and tangs. A French angel is my favorite.

I haven’t been collecting 20lb pieces of Pukani rock for nothing, it’s all part of a master plan.
 
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1ocean

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Oh I would love to see that with a cup of coffee... I am planning, not sure if it will happen a 6x4x30 inch to replace the 300...Judy wants all the house project done first..I understand....Sal