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Old 10/12/2011, 01:10 PM   #1
rogermccray
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My "Little Bit Bigger" 215 Gallon Tank Build

So it all started when my son wanted a “blue fish” (a betta) so, my wife and I got a betta and a small freshwater tank (10 gallons). While talking about the tank with a friend who has a similar aged child, I found out that he was into SW tanks and he had a Biocube 8 that he would be willing to give me. He also pointed me to RC and that is how my SW fascination began.

I had the BC set up in early August, with an occelaris clownfish named “Elmo”, but I really didn’t think it was big enough soooo….I figured I would get a tank that was a little bit bigger. I started eyeing 75 gallon tanks and was fully planning on getting one around that side, until I saw a gorgeous group of fish called “Tangs”. Well you all know what a small choice of Tangs you can have in a 75 gallon tank and I had this seven foot wall in my foyer that was bare. Well as you can guess I was thinking of getting a 125 gallon tank, leaving me about six inches on each side of the tank to view the sides. But once again I RC did me in and I saw another gorgeous fish, an Achilles Tang. Well once again my “little bit bigger” tank jumped up another notch to 180 gallons. At this point I said okay, that is as big as I am going to get.

So, I started perusing craiglist for tank and I also put a “WTB 180 gallon tank” on a few local forums. Within 24 hours I received a message about a 215 Oceanic Bowfront tank with stand and sump for $450, and about 100lbs of LR for another $100. Since this tank actually has a smaller footprint, more height, than a 180 gallon so, I decided to go for it.

So on September 8th I picked up the tank and rock and moved it into the house. My wife and I were very overwhelmed by the size of the tank, but it really fit perfectly in that room and with the removal of the BC 8 and the original FW tank we decided it would be okay. My wife basically said, I am not getting rid of this tank to get a smaller one to only upgrade to a bigger one later and I had no argument to that Here is my wife next to the tank, she will probably be angry at me for doing this ( you can see the 10 gallon betta tank at the right of the pic):




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Old 10/12/2011, 01:13 PM   #2
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Well at this point my plan was to slowly collect the needed equipment for the tank but my friend had just upgraded his tank to a 125 and he had a spare RODI unit, uv sterilizer, skimmer and a mag 5 that I could use for a return pump. He gave me all these for free, I do plan on buying upgrading these as the mag 5 and the skimmer are a little bit under powered for my tank. So this jumped up my timeline and I decided to start the big tank immediately. It took me about two weeks to plumb it and get the water in it: Here is it on September 21st almost all full:



Which is when I put the sand in:


A few days after the cloudiness went a way I threw the rock in the water, which had been in a container in the basement with heat and a pump in it for flow:


Here is the aquascape I did. I do plan on buying more rock and adding it later, I will probably get another 100 lbs of dry rock but only add it a little at a time and keep my bioload low until I get all that I want.



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Old 10/12/2011, 01:14 PM   #3
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At this point I still need powerheads and lights, so I looked around to find this equipment. I ended up getting a 6 Bulb Nova Extreme Pro with ATI bulbs for $360 (brand new bulbs) from a friend.




I then found a deal for four Koralia 3’s and a Red Sea Wavemaker Pro for $150. I knew that was not going to be enough flow but I thought I could keep it at that for a little while until I could upgrade them. As you can guess I was wrong in this assumption and I quickly purchased two Koralia Magnum 8’s to run with two of the 3’s. I am happy with the flow I have now.



I briefly put them on the wavemaker, but I am not a huge fan of the noise that comes from the 3s when the powerheads turn on and off. I want to read up more about how the Koralia’s stand up to the wavemaker cycling power to them before I try to put them back on it.


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Old 10/12/2011, 01:14 PM   #4
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And that is where I am at right now, tomorrow my CUC comes, 25 dwarf ceriths, 25 turbos, 10 Florida Cerith, 25 Nassarius, 10 Nerites and 1 Florida Fighting Conch.

I will give it a week or so and I will bring over my occeralis clownfish, green clown goby (after I get the top built), and my corals and rocks from BC 8. After I kill the aiptasia and red bubble algae.


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Old 10/12/2011, 01:20 PM   #5
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I really need to get a black background on there and I am also planning on painting the stand black.

For construction projects with this tank, I reinforced my floor with two support jacks and a 6x6 between the two. I also ran a new electrical outlet so that all of the fish tank stuff is on its own circuit (my house is 100 years old and everything seems to be on the same circuit)


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Old 10/12/2011, 01:24 PM   #6
Reef264
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I like how you upgraded from an 8g Bio cube, To a 215g Bowfront!That's awesome!Good thing u did your research about the tangs, most people set up a tank not knowing what they are going to put in it, and figure out it was not as big as the fish they wanted to keep needed, anywho...what about corals!Any plans for that?


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Old 10/12/2011, 01:28 PM   #7
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So much potential to play. Looks great. Have fun!! Are you gonna FOWLR it or do corals?


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Old 10/12/2011, 01:28 PM   #8
rogermccray
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Reef264 View Post
I like how you upgraded from an 8g Bio cube, To a 215g Bowfront!That's awesome!Good thing u did your research about the tangs, most people set up a tank not knowing what they are going to put in it, and figure out it was not as big as the fish they wanted to keep needed, anywho...what about corals!Any plans for that?


-cody
Yeah, the upgrade got a bit out of hand.

For corals I currently have a frogspawn, hosting my clownfish, a candy cane coral, yuma mushrooms, and some zoas in the BC waiting to come over. After that I haven't really thought a lot about it. I got some stocking lists for inverts and fish but haven't done a lot of research on what corals i like. Though I really like the looks of a brain coral...


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Old 10/12/2011, 01:31 PM   #9
Reef264
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Brains are very cool, Hardy corals.Its pretty fun to feed one, bubble corals are also very cool


-cody


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Old 10/12/2011, 01:33 PM   #10
rogermccray
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And thank god my wife is good natured about this crazy project, every time I mention getting a new fish or invert she asks me what I am going to name it...I told her nothing so she has taken to naming them. Well my son named the clownfish "Elmo" which is how he says Nemo, I know I know, but at least I know the technical name and its name is not Nemo

The clown goby's name is Gregory and she even named the snails, how the heck she keeps track of which snail is which is beyond me.



Last edited by rogermccray; 10/12/2011 at 01:39 PM.
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Old 10/12/2011, 01:38 PM   #11
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Whatever it takes to keep them onboard. Once they get bored, the problems begin. Lookin forward to your build!


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Old 10/12/2011, 01:50 PM   #12
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Looking awesome Roger.


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Old 10/12/2011, 03:54 PM   #13
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Can't wait to see it down the road, it already looks fairly interesting!!! You had a good size upgrade there, not sure if you will be able to add many more fish with Elmo lol. Looks good so far keep it up!


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Old 10/12/2011, 05:32 PM   #14
A_Z
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wow nice build I didn't even know Oceanic made 215g bow fronts

I thought the largest they made were 155


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Old 10/12/2011, 06:19 PM   #15
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Wow, very nice. My 65 gallon isnt even finished cycling yet and im thinking bigger, however i have to wait until we build our new house.

Very nice build and some great deals.


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Old 10/12/2011, 08:05 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rcmania View Post
Wow, very nice. My 65 gallon isnt even finished cycling yet and im thinking bigger, however i have to wait until we build our new house.

Very nice build and some great deals.
Thanks! don't go 25x bigger like I did , 1625 gallons might be a bit much.


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Old 10/12/2011, 08:08 PM   #17
rogermccray
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Can't wait to see it down the road, it already looks fairly interesting!!! You had a good size upgrade there, not sure if you will be able to add many more fish with Elmo lol. Looks good so far keep it up!
Chad, crichard6069, is just waiting for me to get the fish tank set up so he can pawn his third occ. clown. He keeps jumping in the over flow because he is the third wheel.

He is also the one that gave me all the free equipment so, I guess I could take the fish off his hands so he doesn't have to keep fishing him out of the overflow. Though I don't want to have to fish him out of the over flow so that may or may not be a good idea.


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Old 10/12/2011, 08:09 PM   #18
rogermccray
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Originally Posted by rcmania View Post
Wow, very nice. My 65 gallon isnt even finished cycling yet and im thinking bigger, however i have to wait until we build our new house.

Very nice build and some great deals.
Thanks!

Hurry up and get that house built, and make sure it has a fish room


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Old 10/12/2011, 09:02 PM   #19
rcmania
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rogermccray View Post
Thanks! don't go 25x bigger like I did , 1625 gallons might be a bit much.
Go BIG or go home, right?


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Old 10/13/2011, 12:44 AM   #20
89Foxbody
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215g tank with sump and stand for $450 bucks...seriously how come those kinds of deals never come up around here? Ugh lol.

Grats on your new build! Hope you have a lot of fun with it.


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Old 10/13/2011, 01:51 AM   #21
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Sweet deal !! Have fun and go slow.


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Old 10/13/2011, 06:53 AM   #22
rogermccray
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So, I was getting a ton of noise on my overflows, the water picks up a ton of speed while dropping into the sump. I have been trying to find a good fix for it and yesterday I stumbled across this post:

http://www.reefcentral.com/forums/sh...9&postcount=31

It worked wonders and my tank is a lot more quiet now.


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Old 10/13/2011, 08:21 AM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rogermccray View Post
And thank god my wife is good natured about this crazy project, every time I mention getting a new fish or invert she asks me what I am going to name it...I told her nothing so she has taken to naming them. Well my son named the clownfish "Elmo" which is how he says Nemo, I know I know, but at least I know the technical name and its name is not Nemo

The clown goby's name is Gregory and she even named the snails, how the heck she keeps track of which snail is which is beyond me.
My son named a couple of our snails... "Snuffleuppugus", and an orange shelled snail "Sunny D"...


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Old 10/13/2011, 08:23 AM   #24
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Off to a good start. Tell the wife she should model for your reef central pics with the tank lol.


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Old 10/13/2011, 08:32 AM   #25
rogermccray
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Off to a good start. Tell the wife she should model for your reef central pics with the tank lol.
Haha, she was not very happy when I told her that I put this picture up

Oops


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