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Old 03/17/2009, 12:11 AM   #1
drummereef
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Talking drummereef's 180g in-wall build

So, where do I start...

My interest in fish started way back when I was in middle school. My science teacher thought it would be really cool to have a tank dedicated to native freshwater species found in the local ponds and lakes. So my Dad and I went out to the lake we used to frequent and caught the biggest bunch of Bluegill we could catch. Long story short, the next morning I arrived at school extra early to present my science teacher with our find. Unfortunately the teacher hadn't arrived so I headed down to the Principle's office. He saw the big cooler of fish and with his help our new fishy friends found their new home. I couldn't wait until science class that day to see the Bluegill in the aquarium. I was pleasantly greeted by my science teacher who made an official announcement to the class about the new arrival. I was grinning from ear to ear until he said..... and a special thanks to our new Bluegill who ate $150 worth of my tropical fish! He later pointed out the empty tank that he was intending to use for the students.

So after a few years of keeping freshwater tanks, I started my first saltwater 40g fowlr tank. And believe it or not, my current 40g mixed reef is the same tank that has evolved from that first fowlr about 14 years ago. So with a little work and a lot of help from my Pops here I go again.....

The 180g is a work in progress, so it's going to be a while before it sees any water. I'll update as I go and hopefully you guys will chime in with ideas.



Here's a pic of my 40g mixed reef from a while ago. The corals have since completely taken over the tank. The orange monti is now 12x12 and the frogspawn is the size of a volleyball. It's time for an upgrade.






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180g Marineland Starfire In-Wall 278 gallon system

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Old 03/17/2009, 12:12 AM   #2
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So the build begins...

Framing the viewing wall. The stand will be supported by the half wall shown. 2x4 on 12" centers, including the double 2x4's on either side. I planned the opening around bar stool height so I'll probably do a little ledge for beverages at some point.





I put a 2x10 header above the tank so I could maximize the clearance above the tank while keeping the viewing panel as flush to the front wall as possible. This build is in my basement so the 2x10 has no structural significance.





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180g Marineland Starfire In-Wall 278 gallon system

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Old 03/17/2009, 12:13 AM   #3
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A little drywall and mud.





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180g Marineland Starfire In-Wall 278 gallon system

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Old 03/17/2009, 12:13 AM   #4
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And voila, an in-wall begins!





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180g Marineland Starfire In-Wall 278 gallon system

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Old 03/17/2009, 12:15 AM   #5
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Onto the sump room.... Here's the original Sketchup of the project. I recently had a new HVAC put in the house so needless to say this tank upgrade was put on hold. But, while the boys were out here I had them run a vent for an exhaust fan. I also had them run a supply and return to the sump room to help keep humidity to a minimum.





A little drywall work.








Taping and mudding again...





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180g Marineland Starfire In-Wall 278 gallon system

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Old 03/17/2009, 12:16 AM   #6
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Let there be white!





Finish coat of paint and some enamel on the floor. I used Benjamin Moore Aura in Semi-gloss on the walls and BM Porch & Floor epoxy reinforced enamel on the concrete. Flowed like butter. The original flooring in this area was linoleum from the previous owner. I've never been so sore in my life scraping that glue up. I eventually had to get in the corners with an angle grinder to get the last of it. Did an acid etch to prep the concrete and painted.





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180g Marineland Starfire In-Wall 278 gallon system

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Old 03/17/2009, 12:19 AM   #7
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So with a stack of lumber, some tools, and a can of paint I was off to build the stand.








Little tip for the diy stand builders... I decided to prime all the lumber before it went up. Thought it would be easier to finish paint the stand later.





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180g Marineland Starfire In-Wall 278 gallon system

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Old 03/17/2009, 12:22 AM   #8
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So this is where I am today. The design is basically a variation on RocketEngineer's design. The viewable side of the tank is resting on the half wall I built. The sump side is pretty much his design. The bottom shelf will hold the sump. I'm still measuring for the sump size and plumbing so I'll design the shelf around that. The floor is sloping towards the HVAC and floor drain on the other side of the right wall. It's a pita to level.


RocketEngineer's DIY Stand Template






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180g Marineland Starfire In-Wall 278 gallon system

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Old 03/17/2009, 12:29 AM   #9
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Nice... Subscribed for the ride


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Old 03/17/2009, 12:30 AM   #10
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Here's the tank! Marineland 180g (72x24x24) with dual corner overflows. I upgraded to a Starfire front panel when I ordered it.








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180g Marineland Starfire In-Wall 278 gallon system

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Old 03/17/2009, 12:44 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally posted by Hop
Nice... Subscribed for the ride
Great! It's going to be a looooooong ride so buckle up.


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Old 03/17/2009, 12:46 AM   #12
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First equipment pics!








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180g Marineland Starfire In-Wall 278 gallon system

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Old 03/17/2009, 01:36 AM   #13
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The system will consist of the main display (180g), sump below (approx 70g) , and a remote refugium plumbed into the system (right side wall). It will be fed from the return pump and gravity drain back to the sump. This way I can take the refugium offline if needed. I also plan to plumb in a relatively easy way to perform water changes. Still researching ideas.....


Here's the ever evolving equipment list, some of which I'll transfer from my 40g.

Neptune Sys Aquacontroller Jr + DC4HD (40g)
Neptune Sys AquaSurf
3 Lumenmax Elite mogul reflectors
3 250 watt Galaxy e-ballasts
MSX250 skimmer (^^^)
Reflo Dart return pump
2x Tunze Stream 6105
2x Tunze Nanostream 6025 (40g)
Filter Guys Ocean Reef +2 RO/DI
Heaters, etc......


I've got a long way to go.


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180g Marineland Starfire In-Wall 278 gallon system

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Old 03/17/2009, 01:44 AM   #14
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keeping an eye on this one

sana


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Current Tank Info: 90RR inwall, Octopuss Skimmer, 2 MP40 wQD, 1 MP10 WQD, 2 Radions G4 Pro, Apex Doser, Apex Controller, 400w heater, 30 Gal Sump, Biopellets, Carbon, Gfo, Macroalgae
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Old 03/17/2009, 01:47 AM   #15
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keeping an eye on this one

sana
Thanks sana! I'll probably be hitting you up for some plumbing ideas in the near future.


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Old 03/17/2009, 11:04 AM   #16
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drummereef

Your workzone needs to be a lot more messy. It's not normal to be able to move around without falling over and breaking stuff that is sprawled all over the floor.

Other than that, it looks great! I have not checked out those skimmers, did you get it from MS? A Google had them on the top of the list.

Keep us posted

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Old 03/17/2009, 12:58 PM   #17
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Looking good. I was wondering about you lately. Thought that I might see you at the SLASH frag swap.


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Old 03/17/2009, 01:17 PM   #18
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looks great. i am with faz you are going to have to get some stuff thrown around and some sawdust on the floor.


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Old 03/17/2009, 02:19 PM   #19
drummereef
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Quote:
Originally posted by fazgood
drummereef

Your workzone needs to be a lot more messy. It's not normal to be able to move around without falling over and breaking stuff that is sprawled all over the floor.

Other than that, it looks great! I have not checked out those skimmers, did you get it from MS? A Google had them on the top of the list.

Keep us posted

Faz
You'd be surprised how messy it gets in person. Yeah, got it from MS in Ohio. They are supposed to be more efficient in producing the nog than the Octopus from what I've seen. Slightly different pinwheel design. Deciding if I want to run it straight or do the mesh. Jeff and MS told me it runs great with the pinwheel. I'll give it a try.


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Old 03/17/2009, 02:20 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally posted by gbecker
Looking good. I was wondering about you lately. Thought that I might see you at the SLASH frag swap.
Nice to hear from you too. The frags you gave me are REALLY happy. So happy they made me buy a new tank.


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Old 03/17/2009, 02:21 PM   #21
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Originally posted by panaboy95
looks great. i am with faz you are going to have to get some stuff thrown around and some sawdust on the floor.
I'll do my best.


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Old 03/17/2009, 05:26 PM   #22
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Tag.


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Old 03/17/2009, 05:41 PM   #23
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Some great work done so far, well done! I look forward to seeing this thing up and stocked.


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Old 03/17/2009, 06:34 PM   #24
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looks nice. now come over to my house and finish my in-wall setup.

what type of sump are you going to use, a normal tank or a rubbermaid stock tank?


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Old 03/17/2009, 10:03 PM   #25
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Thanks Mike!


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