The Final Build...

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The Final Build...

Postby customcolor on Mon Aug 06, 2012 5:43 pm

After going through the whole business thing with coral...we have decided to shut it down. We just moved and are changing our ways of thinking. Family comes first salt water is a fun second!! We are doing this so that having saltwater stays fun and not full of frustration in trying to make a buck. Having fun is what this is all about....RIGHT??

So with that said...This is the FINAL BUILD! No upgrading to larger tanks...no down grading to smaller tanks...and no adding more tanks....this is it! All my knowledge and skills will go into this tank!

Back when we started into saltwater we had a 75galRR...every since we traded it for a 125 tank and stand...we have missed its size. Don't get me wrong...the 125 was awesome but still missed having a 4' tank.

AND SO IT BEGINS...

DRILL IT!!!!

A single 1.5" hole is drilled for the overflow off center so that i may unblock it easy if i need to.

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Next i need to do the overflow...now here is where i will toss you for a loop...NO FOAM THIS TIME!? Thats right...no foam...decided to put my job to work...(just me behind the bosses back..lol). I run a small cnc at work about 1/2 of my shift...well i decided to improve on what hardly no one has thought of improving on before. Yep thats the overflow box it self. Granted there has ben few improvements but none like this.

Here is the front with the top brace (not the improvement) bottom and sides all attached together.

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Now here is where the improvement is...most of us know how water works.....it likes to stick to what its flowing over but when there is a sharp change in direction going down it will let go and fall instead of flow over. When it falls it will crash and A. make noise & B. make bubbles. Well with us wanting almost no noise with this tank we needed to change that. (bubbles are always bad) So when i ran this i made the inside of the overflow area, coming from where the water will go, CURVED and SLOPED! That way the water can stick to the overflow as it goes down the inside of it so it will not splash.

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Next i made a back plate to glue it to....but i had to attach the plate to the tank first or i would not have been able to put the 1.5" bulkhead through it. Silicone away and clamped it on with the bulk head so i could get a great water tight seal. Of course you know whats next....I attached the overflow box to the back plate..

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PHASE 2..

Start building the stand.

Well i had a pile of tile that i reclaimed off the 125 stand we had. I wanted to reuse it BAD!!! so came up with something not seen by me before. First i needed to build the main part of it.

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Now the color of the stand is also something i did long time ago with a fresh water stand i did. I used these 3 things...can you put it together on what and how i did it??

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I didnt think so...LOL!!

Here is what you need to do. First put some naptha on a paper towel...not to much, dont want it running off it. Second spray some black spray paint on a small section of the wood about 2-3 feet long...count to 5 then start to wipe it off with the naptha towel...basically your thinning the spray paint down so it can soak into the wood like a stain. You may use less naptha for a darker effect or vice versa. After you do all your wood spread a thin layer of water based POLY over it.

Results as follows on pulper...

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Re: The Final Build...

Postby customcolor on Mon Aug 06, 2012 5:43 pm

Stand part 2

Like i said earlier ...i have a bunch of tile i reclaimed off the 125 stand and i wanted to use it. Well here is where im using it. Being on a side of the stand gave me a slite challenge..but with using liquid nail instead of mortar adhesive there was no real issue. Just needed to keep the spacing...for that i used paper towel folded 6 times in half to make my spacing...again using what i had available :P

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After 24 hours i added the corner trim (spray stained the same)

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Well as you can tell (kinda) that i am now doing all this in the house (now the new house) Reason for that is because this stand is now at least 50lbs heavier! LOL!! During this next part i put down some 3mil plastic i had so the wife wouldnt kill me if i made a mess of my self. I needed to fill in all those gaps between the tile. Black mortar was the perfect fit. I used a whole 10lbs of mortar powder! Every last bit if it! CRAP now i need more for the canopy (when i get there)

Well im not going to show you the mess but i will show you the result.

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Back to the tank...

Now again i am doing this in the house to finish it...want the back dark....IN COMES THE AUTOMOTIVE TINT!! I used 2.5 limo black for this. Another reason for using the tint is so that the back will not get scratched easy at all. I have used spray paint before. It just scraped off to darn easy.

BEFORE

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AFTER

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ALL TOGETHER IN THE CORNER (minus stand door...for now)

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SUMP!!

Off to filtration..first off i finally am putting to good use of this free 55gal tank!! You may think...."what not using it as a display?" yep...your right...when i got this 55 3 years ago it was desdend to become a sump...to many scratches and i just dont like 55's as displays any more. It took me a little bit to get 3 years of dust off and to clean up the gravel out of it but its ready!!

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i only put in 2 baffles to save space (sorry no pic as of now) Even though there is only 2 baffles i have good faith in not having micro bubbles in my display. Also since there is only one section blocked off (skimmer area) the rest of the tank will be full of live rock. Now your asking why no fuge? Well ill tell ya...I have ben running a bio pellets set up for over a year now with no issues! The pellets have ben doing a great job in keeping my phosphates to .05 and nitrates at 0 that i see no need for a fuge. No algea issues of any kind neither. i only run about 1.5" of media in a Next Reef reactor with a mag5 putting flow to it...dont fix what isnt broken i say!!

Started the pluming and here is why ill have more then enough room to get to the sump with having one door and a 4' sump and stand......well behind this tank there is a closet!! Small that it may be...it fits the sump in it great plus a few other things too!!!!

I built a stand for the sump to get it off the ground and to help with head loss and bubbles from the dropping water. Now in order to get the water to and from the sump i needed to drill some holes in the wall (much easier to fix then holes in the floor!!) I used 45s and spa flex to help getting smoother flow. The 45 you see just behind the tank is to let air in to the drain...dont worry it will be caped with a hole in it to keep it quiet.

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sump in place off the ground and boy...talk about almost no head loss!! Maybe 2' of head!!!??!! 1.5" drain the whole way and 1" returns the whole way....


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Like i said...its a little closet!!!

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Up next is the water!!!!!!!!!!
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Re: The Final Build...

Postby customcolor on Mon Aug 06, 2012 5:44 pm

Time to fill it!!

Hooked up the ro/di unit in the closet also and pushed through the line to the tank. Fill the tank and let it drain to the sump...best way of doing it. Only doing a shallow sand bed about 1" deep in this set up since i did not hide the lower trim of the tank and i hate the look of sand against the glass after it ages.

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Wile the tank was filling i decided to add the dry rock i planed on using. most of the rock is tied together using EPO putty (best 2 part putty in my eye) I did like 5 pieces so i could still move some things around with out to many hassles and so that they wouldnt be so darn heavy to pick up and put in. I added one more piece after these pics to the left side (you will see it in future pics)

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Top view

Wanted to keep the rock off the back wall to help with all around flow movement and so that there will be more swimming room for the small fish we are putting in it.

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After a day and a half its was full enough! Salt was added to cloud up the tank :P

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UP NEXT IS A VIDEO OF THE OVERFLOW BOX!!!
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Re: The Final Build...

Postby customcolor on Mon Aug 06, 2012 5:45 pm

as promised...


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0KjBtgTfIp8





Alright....before i go to town on the canopy i decided to put the 2 marineland led under the rim units we got from MACNA 2011 to use. They are a bugger to get on the larger tank rims!! Took me almost 5 min each to get them on :( ..but nothing broke so all is good!!

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They fill the tank ok with blue light....trust me this is not going to be the main lighting!! way to dim! but still to bright for a good moon light...kinda in between.

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Mp10 mounted and in place....

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Gota love these things!! Keeps wires nice and out of the way. Also helps keep the vortech wire out of the way so i dont knock it off :P

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customcolor
 
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Re: The Final Build...

Postby Aimforever on Mon Aug 06, 2012 7:30 pm

Looks incredible so far, thanks for sharing! I especially love the stand! Great work!
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Re: The Final Build...

Postby Sula on Tue Aug 07, 2012 7:41 pm

Good stuff Dave - I really like that tile stand. Very unique and decorative!
When on a journey, it is good to have an end, but in the end it's the journey that counts.
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Re: The Final Build...

Postby customcolor on Wed Aug 08, 2012 8:32 pm

THANKS SULA!!


Off to the canopy!!

Needed to copy what i did to the stand to the canopy. So off to get more wood for trim and some ply from work from the scrap pile...This is what i came up with....

test fit

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Well i needed to hang my LEDs in the canopy but i needed them to move and point down wile i lift up the canopy. Reason for this is so that if there is any one in the room...they dont go blind from the crazy light ...lol!!

The LEDs that im using have only 2 mounting locations on them which makes this idea come easy. The canopy is only 6" tall so i needed it to be close to the top too. I went to the hardware store to see what i could use that would be strong yet wont oxidize much. 3/8" 4' long aluminum rod will work perfect!! This will alow the lights to pivot when i lift up the canopy and be very strong for holding up the heavy led units.

Support on both sides...made this of oak i had laying around.

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Put a notch in the center piece also. I figured its better to leave the aluminum rod as a solid piece all the way across for best fit. Center brace is oak too.

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Hinging for the canopy. Front piece is oak (last of it...lol) back piece is plywood that goes down to the top of the tank.

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Here i am holding the canopy open (just look at that dork in the mirror...LOL) Now you can see how i want the lights to hang when its all open..

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Top view of it down.

You may be wondering about my LED units your seeing...well more on those later...he he he

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Re: The Final Build...

Postby customcolor on Sun Aug 12, 2012 5:28 pm

Time to work on the canopy again.....first step was to paint/stain the main trim.

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Wile i did that i sprayed the inside of the canopy all black too with a very heavy coat of water based urethane on top of it to help with the humidity not getting into the wood. As you may have noticed in prier pics...all the screws were covered with liquid nail also to help with the same thing.

Now i know i can lift this whole thing but i wanted to be able to keep it up wile im working in the tank. I was thinking of a pulley system to help with that but that was getting to complex. We all know that sometimes simple is better so i skipped that whole idea except one part. The one part was the scissor part of the lift.

I grabbed more stuff at work from the scrap pile. This time it is a fiberglass circuit board type material but much stronger!!! Its called Polycluth. Trust me...it burns up solid carbide end mills quick! I made it into .75" wide strips to be about 10" long each. Tossed them on the cnc so that the holes where in the same spot on each. In the pics below you will see that i used nylon screws to hold them together but i did change them to stainless for even more strength. the screws are not going thru just the wood but a nylon bushing that i pressed into the wood so i could get long time wear from lifting. There is a pair of these scissors on each side of the center brace on the top part of the canopy. They go down to another piece of wood that i have coming from the back and rests on the center brace of the tank.

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As you can see i had to put a stop block in so that there is not magga forces on the pivot points by going to far with it. The straighter the scissor is the better when its locked into place

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step back and snap a pick for proof that im not holding it up.

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Now in this next pic you will see the scissor on the right a little but now im showing off the LEDs that im using for this build :)

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The LEDs of my choice to use on this 75 are called Madness ZERO. They have 20 blue and 20 white Cree xpe leds with 60 degree optics on them using a TOTAL of 100 watts. There is no fans on these at all. Zero noise! But they are heavy cuz of the big heat sink. They get only warm to the touch. Reason for that is because the driver ...which are dimmable!!...is located not on the led unit it self, but before them.

I havent taken par readings yet but ill tell you one thing...i bet they are close to 250watt halide readings...these suckers are bright in 18" of water only 4" above.

more pics of the ZEROs

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Re: The Final Build...

Postby customcolor on Tue Aug 14, 2012 6:50 pm

JUST HAD TO Share this one fast!!!! I also had to do a vid of it just so you all really know that it works perfect!!

This is one of the trickist things I did to my new reef!! Since my sump is on the other side of the wall...so is the plug for the return pump. Now when I want to feed my coral I dont have to walk around and unplug my return pump!!




http://www.youtube.com/embed/HEs-hvyQPUs
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Re: The Final Build...

Postby ObeyMyDog on Tue Aug 14, 2012 8:40 pm

I have a similar remote switch for the recessed lights in my gun-cabinet-turned-liquor-cabinet. Something I discovered quite by accident is that mine is on the same frequency as one of the garage door openers in the building. If you have any other remotely switched devices, you might want to double check that they don't conflict. That could prove problematic. =)

Also, your whole build is frickin' awesome!
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Re: The Final Build...

Postby customcolor on Wed Aug 15, 2012 4:38 am

thanks for the heads up on the whole garage door thing....no conflicts with ours so i think we are all set ...

and thanks!!
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Re: The Final Build...

Postby customcolor on Sun Aug 19, 2012 6:54 pm

Canopy again...

Well i did finish the tile work on the canopy....

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But i was VERY unhappy with my self....the grout i used was not the same color...i thought i used charcoal colored on the stand...well after i set the canopy up on the tank...there was a big difference!!

Yep i made a mistake and didnt keep the old bag so i would know for when i did the canopy. See for your self the color difference with a flash on them.

stand

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canopy

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OK the flash made them look little to much alike...trust me ...one was blacker than the other and you could tell very easy in person.

Well any who...i needed them to match of coarse. Now here is my solution....Paint the grout. With how i did it it worked very easy since i had large grout lines.

First off i snagged a $1 bottle of black acrylic paint

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Mixed it in a bowl with water to make it more of a tint instead of a paint. This makes it so i can add more layers to one or the other to make them match better.

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Yes that is a tooth brush i used to mix it.....BRAND NEW one bought just for this...(pack of 4 at dollar tree...he he he) That tooth brush was also used to paint the watered down color on the grout. I was able to drag the tooth brush down the lanes of grout very easy. Took much less time than with a paint brush and much easier to keep steady.

A pick just after my first line...

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It was turning out very nice!! Looked much better and really defined the slate better too...some times the slate was getting lost in the color of the stand....NOT ANY MORE :)

canopy after

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stand after

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Now the whole darn thing...now looks even better!!


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Re: The Final Build...

Postby Sula on Sun Aug 19, 2012 7:12 pm

I agree, it looks really sharp with the darker grout!
When on a journey, it is good to have an end, but in the end it's the journey that counts.
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