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Old 02/04/2018, 01:29 PM   #1
angelargill
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Biocube 32 - Want coral intensive and keep the top ON. Successful examples?

I am returning to the reef world. I spent a year building a 50 gallon peninsula built in system with auto water changes fun stuff. I sold the house it was built into and hence the aquarium. Now I live downtown in a loft and want to go the nano route focusing on soft coral, LPS, and hopefully an anenome/clown pair.

Checking out the pros of the new Biocube 32 and consider things below. Would love to hear feedback on top on vs. off (I do not like the visual of topless) as well as upgrades that are all compatible.

Thinking:

Biocube 32
Apex computer
Light upgrade to Steve's system (?)
InTank Refug/Media Basket
Protein Skimmer - maybe
Ecotech MP10QD (2)
Live rock and live sand

Stock - mostly soft corals & LPS with a few fish and hopefully anenome/clown pair (I have had success with this in the past and it is my fav thing ever).

I don't want to waste money on things I end up trashing and upgrading (been there done that) and I really prefer to have things streamline and connected as possible (big techie and loved my Apex on my last tank).

What have I missed the last 5 years - what mistakes do I need to avoid? Can I have a gorgeous system and keep the top ON for the Biocube? Should I consider a different system?


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Old 02/04/2018, 01:56 PM   #2
JVan82
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I have a 32 and have all the same upgrades you have listed. Except I had 0 luck with a led retrofit so I went to an XR15. Without a lid temp is more stable but evaporation is increased. With the XR15, it can support almost any coral. I have WS-1 aquamaxx skimmer haven't installed it as of yet.

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Old 02/05/2018, 09:53 AM   #3
DustanT
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Custom led kits are a pain to get set up right from my own experience. I had the rapidled kit, Going with a kessil next time.


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Old 02/08/2018, 09:29 PM   #4
BClute
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DustanT View Post
Custom led kits are a pain to get set up right from my own experience. I had the rapidled kit, Going with a kessil next time.


I have the rapid solderless kit. Took me about an hour to get it all set up... maybe an hour and a half.. I didn't think it was too too bad.. I don't think there's much out there that I couldn't keep under that setup.. could be mistaken though..


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Old 02/09/2018, 05:39 AM   #5
Smoke Inator
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i did the nano box retro and its been working like a champ...my install pics are on nano reef's forum


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Old 02/13/2018, 09:24 AM   #6
takoattack
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I use the stock LED lighting. My system is 13 months in. I have been unsuccessful in keeping even hardy SPS like Birdsnest and montipora digita. I am now focusing on LPS, softies, and nems. Currently battling high phosphates.

I use in-tank media basket, and refugium in my chamber 2. heater and corallife skimmer in chamber 1 (skimmer is no longer producing skimmate, but it was for a few months, I'm likely going to remove it and explicitly rely on chemipure elite for phosphate and nitrate accumulation.)

some photos:
https://www.instagram.com/explore/tags/tako32cube/


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Old 02/14/2018, 07:58 PM   #7
BClute
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I haven't added any sps bc I want the mag to settle in first, but here's a FTS and my hood is on.


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Old 02/19/2018, 05:17 PM   #8
ReefWreak
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Quote:
Originally Posted by angelargill View Post
What have I missed the last 5 years - what mistakes do I need to avoid? Can I have a gorgeous system and keep the top ON for the Biocube? Should I consider a different system?
Quote:
Originally Posted by angelargill View Post
I don't want to waste money on things I end up trashing and upgrading (been there done that) and I really prefer to have things streamline and connected as possible (big techie and loved my Apex on my last tank).

Quote:
Originally Posted by angelargill View Post
Thinking:

Biocube 32
Apex computer
Light upgrade to Steve's system (?)
InTank Refug/Media Basket
Protein Skimmer - maybe
Ecotech MP10QD (2)
Live rock and live sand

Stock - mostly soft corals & LPS with a few fish and hopefully anenome/clown pair (I have had success with this in the past and it is my fav thing ever).
For soft corals and most LPS, you honestly would be fine with a stock biocube. If you want to get fancy, get a $12 floodlight from ebay, or algae-specific light, and shine it into the middle rear chamber from behind shining in. Then you would grow algae on the walls, and before a water change, scrape down the walls, and just siphon out from that chamber, which will be about 5 gallons, so you'll basically just siphon out algae and be doing your water changes at the same time. That will control nutrients as well as, if not better than, a skimmer.

Apex, steve's LEDs, MP10s are totally overkill for a simple tank. The most helpful thing you can do on a nano is keep up with water changes and maintenance. No constant tweaking, no equipment changes, just keep it simple and pay attention to it.

For reference, my tank (though not currently I'm afraid):



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Old 02/19/2018, 11:10 PM   #9
aznflyfisherman
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Heres my 29g biocube with an ai hydra52 inside the hood. I think it would be better to just buy a use ai hydra52 would be a better choice then steves led kit. But if your not planning to use the hood you have more choices.




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Old 02/20/2018, 10:25 AM   #10
zooman72
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Quote:
Originally Posted by angelargill View Post
I live downtown in a loft and want to go the nano route focusing on soft coral, LPS, and hopefully an anenome/clown pair.

Checking out the pros of the new Biocube 32 and consider things below. Would love to hear feedback on top on vs. off (I do not like the visual of topless) as well as upgrades that are all compatible.

Thinking:

Biocube 32
Apex computer
Light upgrade to Steve's system (?)
InTank Refug/Media Basket
Protein Skimmer - maybe
Ecotech MP10QD (2)
Live rock and live sand

Stock - mostly soft corals & LPS with a few fish and hopefully anenome/clown pair (I have had success with this in the past and it is my fav thing ever).

I don't want to waste money on things I end up trashing and upgrading (been there done that) and I really prefer to have things streamline and connected as possible (big techie and loved my Apex on my last tank).

What have I missed the last 5 years - what mistakes do I need to avoid? Can I have a gorgeous system and keep the top ON for the Biocube? Should I consider a different system?
Well, "right off the bat", keeping soft and LPS corals can be done without upgrading the lighting, but anemones can be more problematic depending on what species you would like to keep (i.e. some need a lot more light than others). The stock light gives little flexibility, but is again fine for lower-light species. I have a Steve's retrofit on my older 14g BioCube, and it allowed me to keep whatever I wanted, with power/ intensity left over. NanoBox offers another good retro - the difference between the two is primarily the controller options, followed by diodes used and heatsink/ fan.

Is a protein skimmer necessary? No, but it allows an extra measure of filtration and gas exchange, especially with a closed hood if running the air intake outside the hood. Having the top cuts down greatly on evaporation, which is key for a nano (and I still would use an auto topoff system). I don't think you would need two MP10's, and there are other fully internal circulation pumps to consider (Tunze, Hydor Koralia, Aqamai KPS, etc.)

Funny, but the one thing I would personally consider "superfluous" is the Apex - nice to have as a "toy", but certainly not needed, especially in a nano.


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Old 02/22/2018, 08:24 PM   #11
ReefWreak
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aznflyfisherman View Post
Heres my 29g biocube with an ai hydra52 inside the hood. I think it would be better to just buy a use ai hydra52 would be a better choice then steves led kit. But if your not planning to use the hood you have more choices.
That's a really fantastic setup. Nice and clean with the macros to balance out the anemone and fish feeding. Do you have a thread? Thanks for sharing!


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Old 02/24/2018, 08:45 AM   #12
aznflyfisherman
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No i dont have a thread , I use the ai hydra52, since thats what i had. I cut out a few screw pegs to fit the ai. I run it around 24% at peak.


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