Thanks, sure feels like its taking ages to come together lol.
I've been pondering the idea of getting a larger tank...still a cube but basically doubling the volume to around 14-15gal. Will give me more room to work and allow me to keep more and still be a nano....not sure yet. I still have time since the build is moving slow. A new tank would cost about $150 extra to the budget so I am still on the fence about it. Unless someone else locally wants to give me a better price quote for a 15" cube with low iron glass lol :wink:
So I finally found some time to finish building the lights. I must say, LED fixtures can hurt your eyes they are so bright but this fixture is on another level. All of the colors are so crisp that it literally Hurts to look at it lol the blues and violets especially, going to make the tank look great. Unfortunately the video I wanted to make showing how didn't turn out the way I wanted so for now it's scrapped. The next thing on the to do list is to get a mat for the tank to sit on and build a way to hang the light without drilling the wall or the ceiling. I have some ideas but we shall see.
Also, been contemplating upgrading to a 15x15x15 tank which would double the gallons of this current tank. So that's a decision to come soon as well.
Just wanted to update. Pulled the trigger on the 15x15x15 cube. Rimless and all sides low iron glass. It's being built right now, should have the tank in a matter of weeks. I've updated the first post to reflect the changes to the tank.
Going to stick with the light I built, don't think the 3" extra will cause me any problems. If it does I will just add more LEDs to the heat sink.
Here is the tank wet and with life. Picked up a nice piece of live rock from Camden Tropical Aquatics where the SCAA cookout was held at, was a good size and shape for my tank. Came with some polyps and mushrooms attached and found 3 snails that snuck in. Using it to get my tank going, had the mindset that if everything lives great. So far everything is doing well even through tank startup/cycle. Snails are always out foraging, polyps opening up a bit, and mushrooms seem to be enjoying themselves.
I'm a bit behind on photos, this one was the day it was setup, the day of the cookout. Today I came home to a nice diatom bloom in my tank so its moving in the right direction. Sorry even I'm not the best taking pictures of LED lights. I'll practice.
Out of order I know but here is the tank pre-fill. Wanted to give a shout out to Chris at PicO Aquariums. He does an absolutely amazing job at making these tanks. Its as good if not better quality than my 100gal rimless from Miracles. Lights are hung by simple bent conduit screwed to the stand.
Set up my auto top off today. I'm so giddy about it. I've always had to top off the tank myself but for $100 I've now automated that process. And a 5gal bucket reservoir should last me quite a while. Perfect timing to because I'm headed to the beach on Sunday for a couple of days. This thing is awesome for a small tank like this where a little evaporation could cause trouble with the pumps, filters, powerheads, etc.
Just wanted to update this. My full clean up crew should be here either tomorrow or more likely Friday. Coming from Reef Cleaners. Had a big hair algae outbreak during the cycle but its dying down now....very quickly actually. Things are looking really good, water is clear, hitchhiking coral is open and doing well. I'm happy with it so far. I still want to add some more rock, and that will come soon as well.
I hate having expensive hobbies. So many things I want but can only get so many at one time. Do I want new wheels for the car or more reef/discus first??
Thought I would update you all on this project. It was going SO well until that fateful day. Thats right Dec 23 it totally crashed. A week earlier I had stocked up on RO water from the local LFS (won't be named but you can guess). With such a small tank I was buying water from the LFS since my WCs were quite small. I stocked up on water for christmas, like I had many times before this and then did my first WC with that water on the 24th.
Due to my complacency I didn't test the water, why should I...never had a problem before after years of getting LFS right? Wrong. The LFS's complacency made them give me Freshwater instead of SW and unknowingly I went about my water change. I noticed a couple of hours later that everything was basically melting, dying at a rapid pace so I test the water and discover the problem. By this time its almost 10pm on the 23rd and I rush out to the local petsmart to buy Salt, mixed up SW myself and did another WC...to little to late basically. Worst part was I had JUST purchased almost $400 worth of SPS coral frags and they were doing amazing in the tank only to have them destroyed in a matter of minutes or hours. Thats what I'm still mad about. The next day was much the same, just trying to save what I could and with it being Christmas eve day the fish store was not open or it was open at very odd hours. I was fuming mad because of my SPS but pushed the tank aside to enjoy christmas.
Fast forward until now, I've got it going again. The rock made it through, pod and bristleworm populations are coming back, my mushrooms, polyps, and GSP are alive. I have half a brain coral that seems to be bouncing back. And I managed to save 2 of my about 10 SPS collection that I had acquired which seem to be now thriving. So I'm slowly getting back into it.
It may have been a simple mistake on the LFS part, grabbing the wrong RO hose or something, and it was my fault for not checking (they can check just as easy before they sell) but that LFS has lost me as a customer for now. Can't trust them. This is why I don't like most LFS and prefer to deal with online shops.
At any rate sorry for the long post. Know that the tank is still running, and is in the process of being build back up.
Reef breeders LED. Kessil. Or DIY. I'm not going to lie, part of the reason I am on the fence is I almost just want to do a large reef for once. But with my track record, that may just end up with a lot of money flushed down the toilet.
On the other hand, your tank is proof that you can have an extremely nice display in a small tank.