Paul's new build.

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reefkeeper2

reefkeeper2

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Yesterday I attached Reef Brite XHO kits to the Radions. These are gen 4s. I'm only doing this to the 5 fixtures in the front row of lighting. The five Radion fixtures in the back row won't have them. I just wanted to add a little pop with the Reef Brites. I can always add on more if I want to but there is more than adequate light with the 10 fixtures. I also thought upgrading to the gen 5s would be a waste of money at this time.
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reefkeeper2

reefkeeper2

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Here's the mod I made for circulation using a Sea Sweep and a Nero 5 powerhead. I won't put it completely together until I know what depth I want the Nero to be in the tank. The SeaSweeps come with the attachments for Tunze pumps. I configured it to the Nero because I wanted a smaller profile and a wider flow. I tried doing this with a gyre pump and though it worked the flow was too great at lower depths and it looked pretty ugly.
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I plan on having two of these in the tank. I will also use some gyre pumps and possibly some Tunzes hidden as best I can.
 
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reefkeeper2

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So now I've been playing around with the lighting. I originally thought that I would put together 5 floating light bars similar to what I saw ReefDudes do on YouTube. . You can see how it was turning out below.
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After I started placing the Radions on the bars, I didn't like it so much. A single bar with lights looks cool. Five bars with lights, not so much. So change of plan. I decided to skin the top with 6 inch wide moulding to cover the lights up. I didn't make it straight but curved it like a bow front. Its white now, but I will spray paint it metallic silver to match the stand.

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You can't see the shape to well with these pics but I like the effect. It comes apart in three pieces easy peasy. All the Radions are already mounted inside. You can't see them straight on.
 

Lizbeli

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This is epic! Did a nice job on the lighting “canopy.” Bet it will look even better once you add a finish/paint.

Out of curiosity, do you think you will have enough clearance under the stand for equipment like a skimmer?

I am a short person who can barely reach the bottom of my waterbox. I wish I had a lower stand but I feel like it would be cramped for equipment. I am just guessing for a tank with this volume a skimmer would be much bigger than my little nyos 120
 
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reefkeeper2

reefkeeper2

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Took advantage of the beautiful weather and painted the light bar metallic silver. You can also see the plywood top for the stand outside drying after applying waterproof sealer. If I didn't do this today I probably would have had to wait till spring.
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afboundguy

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Looks really nice Paul. The top does really blend in now that it's painted...
 
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reefkeeper2

reefkeeper2

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Now to talk of some mistakes/ problems. The stand is perfectly level but looking at the contact it has with the floor I've discovered a problem. The tiles have slight variations in height. The stand does not have contact with the floor in a lot of places, so the weight distribution is not what it should be. In some places the space between the floor and the stand is 1/8 of an inch. I need to put something down on the floor to correct this but am unsure what to do. I ordered some 1/4 `inch neoprene but don't really know if this is the right thing to use. It's what you don't know that comes back and bites you in the butt months or years later. I should have bought feet for the stand but since the floor was level I didn't think I needed them. Mistake. And they can't be added on now. My options are aluminum shims, neoprene rubber or perhaps a pvc sheet.
In the basement I have started to move the support columns to their new locations. Low and behold two of the holding tanks are in the way. One of them I can move without to much problem. The other contains the anemone, coral frags and fish. I have not yet come up with a reasonable way to move it. It is hard plumbed into the sump. I have my work cut out for me.
 

gobyvin

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Paul, if you don’t have an oscillating multi tool, like a Fein Multimaster...
They make excellent grout and tile removal heads for it. They remove tile with surgical precision, I have done it on 45+ year old bathroom tile and preserved the tiles.
If you find yourself simply rebedding tiles to correct the level under your stand, I suggest this route. It sure beats ripping the whole floor up and replacing it. These heads grind thinset away and grout.
Alternately, a strip of closed cell foam under the entire bearing surface of the stand is all I can suggest to properly fill in voids. The other materials including the neoprene you mention might just slip out of place later. Neoprene is too rubbery. I hope you can figure the leveling out easily. Self leveling concrete could be poured on the floor and tiles laid over it, to make it smooth and level.
Just throwing my ideas out there. I hope it helps some.
 

Zirky

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In my trade I use a process called potting to form a tight fit between two poorly fitting items (for example a keel and the bottom of a boat) you simply place plastic of aluminum foil on your floor and wax paper taped tightly to the bottom of your stand and in short fill the gaps with a thickened epoxy. There are as many ways to do this as there are material choices. And release/masking options. But with a little creativity I’m sure you could fab a perfect one piece shim.
 

gobyvin

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@Zirky is hot on a great option Paul.
I use the stuff to fix my boats all the time. That is a great idea.
West System and the Jamestown Distributors Total Boat brand of Epoxy all supply caulking gun cartridges of the thickened epoxy you could make these shims you need out of easily, just line stand bottom with wax paper, and tiled floor as he suggests, tape it off with heavy duty painters tape and inject the epoxy into the void, let dry, remove tape and wax paper- voila... you have a super strong compression proof shim. Be sure to warm the epoxy first in a bucket of hot water and use a powerful caulk gun. That stuff is high viscosity. Whatever is left over you can glue Reef items with. Repairs around house too.
 

Zirky

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If your talking James town distributors. There total fair may be an easy option. I knew a rep who made a mallet with that stuff. Strong and stable.
 

Bostoncoral

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Composite shims seem like the best bet unless they are going to be seen as an eyesore or less than perfect. Im not sure if the bottom of the stand is very visible, but that is what i would use anyway. Easiest and cheapest way probably. Love your youtube channel paul. Been a huge fan of your tank since before i even had a tank!
 
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reefkeeper2

reefkeeper2

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A lot of good ideas. I think I would make a proper mess with the epoxy. Glad the tank isn't coming till spring. Gives me plenty of time to find a solution.
 
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reefkeeper2

reefkeeper2

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I've been having a lot of trouble with alkalinity. Its a lot harder controlling parameters in the holding tanks than in the large system I'm accustomed to. No stability its up and down constantly. Come to find out the calcium reactor is clogged. Not the lines, but the media itself. It's been a while since I cleaned it out so I figure no big deal I've had to do this before. I have a Tunze calcium reactor and it sits in the sump. So I disconnect everything and go to lift it out and it comes apart in my hands. I mean it literally comes completely apart. Water and media all over the place. I clean up the mess and think I can glue the thing back together. Looks like it was originally put together with silicone sealant, not acrylic solvent. No wonder it fell to pieces. I glue it together as best I can but the crappy thing leaks. Time for a new calcium reactor. After a lot of searching I ordered a Geos Reef c818. Anyone have one of these?
 
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