Hey guys! It's been a while since I've been around and my experience reefing hasn't stopped, so I'd like to post the progression of my 40B over the last year it's been setup.
Brand new tank all ready to go!
HOB Refugium / sump / skimmer
This pic is a little blurry but I have a yard stick in front of it for size comparison
It would've been nice if this came with some instructions. I was eventually able to figure out how to hook everything up!
Little plumbers tape to prevent leaks...
For the lighting solution I have employed a DsunY UltraThin dual panel white / blue LED system with a great controller. Since a Radeon fixture was just a bit
too far out of my price range, I did quite a bit of research and asking around before I settled on this particular fixture.
It features preset lighting curves for both white and blue high powered 56 x 3W LEDs at a 50/50 distribution. The curves are pre-programmed for all 4 seasons including their lunar cycles, with a custom setting for the user to manipulate their own white and blue curves as well boasting full dimming capability. Another thing I also liked about this particular system is that it is expandable depending on which style controller you order. I went ahead and swung for the premium style which has enough power to push an additional 2 LED panels should I decide to order more from the manufacturer.
Here's the controller powered on in action. (the display strangely resembles the LCD panel on my RKL
As you can see the panels are quite slim.
Afterwards I picked up a box of dry base rock from one of my friends in St. Pete, and got to work..
And... of course it never ends up looking like that once you install it...Powering on:
At this particular point in time I could only run the tank on what I had. I promised myself I'd make do for a while before I'd go spend a bunch more cash. All I had pushing the water in the tank were 2 Hydor Koralia nano 425s and the 250 pump which came stock to run the skimmer / fuge.
Then began the waiting game. I let the tank run for about 21 days before I began transferring the CuC from my 10g Black and bringing over the few corals before I took it down. Top-off became the name of the next game, day after day.
I decided to go out on a limb and see if I could care for a baby hippo blue.
I left her by herself with just the skunk cleaner as her company for a few weeks before I transferred over my 2 black Ausie clowns from their 10g bungalow. I figured that they'd be so overwhelmed with space, they wouldn't know what to do w/ themselves. I was quite wrong. They became quite territorial quite quickly picking on little blue whenever she'd swim by them. They would also consistently attack my hands whenever I would do work anywhere around the tank.
Here's a little dive cam video I took one night.
I ended up trading the mated blacks for a coral beauty, a scooter blenny, and a few more frags at Marine Warehouse.
Here's some time lapse I took of my critters one day just to observe their swimming and social habits while I was away.
By that time I had also decided to power down my 24g AquaPod in the back of the house and slowly began moving the critters I could catch ( just my single ocellaris and a coral banded shrimp.)
Short little clip before feeding time
Of course the inevitable happened and the baby blue broke out with ich when I was cleaning the tank, and gave it to pretty much everyone else. I persisted with the Ich Attach treatment in hopes that my corals and inverts would still live. I ended up losing every fish I had in the end, but all my inverts were completely unscathed. After which the tank underwent a huge algae bloom over the next 2 months which I could hardly keep under control but with huge water changes due to the Ich Attack medicine.
So I persisted to continue to collect corals without getting any fish over the next month or so until I was absolutely certain that there would be no chance of the parasite left living in my system.
I then ordered myself a Jebao WP-25 wavemaker pump to boost my water flow as seen in this next little clip:
...and after 3 months of no fish in the tank I finally took in a new pair of clownies once again
(please excuse the crappy iphone video)
Since then I've also added a few more coral pieces, a yellow watchman goby, and I managed to catch my firefish from my AquaPod and acclimate him over soon thereafter. Everything is now slowly coming back to life again! The tank will have been running for 1 year next week. Pods are on everything like ants at a picnic, my chaeto chamber has to be trimmed out twice a month, and I dose Kent Marine 2 part once a week, and I routinely top off every evening by hand before I go to bed while everything is "sleeping" (which we all know isn't true). All the good stuff happens at night under the moonlight or in almost complete darkness.
And that's pretty much where I am now