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8G low tech Caribbean tank build

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  • 8G low tech Caribbean tank build

    Well, it's a start. As stated in my intro post, I've been keeping reef tanks for about 10 years with a recent two year break. I'm getting back into it but trying to keep it simple this time. This is a JBJ 8g all-in-one that I plan on keeping stock with the addition of a Koralia nano pump (hidden behind rockwork). Plans are one or two captive-bred gobies, zoanthids, palys, mushrooms, and maybe a photosynthetic gorgonian when the tank gets well established. Planning on keeping it Caribbean themed so I have some focus- unlike my previous tank. For now it just has 8lbs of Bulk Reef Supply dry rock with a couple of small live rock pieces to seed it.

    DSC_1126 on Flickr

    Next I need some sand. I wish stores sold something other than 20lb bags. I probably need about 3lbs. I like to keep the sand minimal but can't quite do bare bottom.
    Last edited by Philly Frag; 09-16-2017, 03:12 PM.

  • #2
    That looks great! Are you going to be doing the goby /pistol shrimp pairing?

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    • #3
      I have some sand laying around, but you'll need to wash it.

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      • #4
        That is a nice offer that I might take you up on. I see you're in Clintonville, I'm not far away in Dublin. Having trouble sending a PM, maybe because I'm not a paying member yet or too few posts.

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        • #5
          Looks like an awesome start!

          Two recommendations:

          I have a 10 month old IM Fusion 10 in my office at work. I highly recommend having an ATO. Keeping your salinity stable is a must for the health of the inhabitants, and with such a small volume, evaporation can mean major swings.

          I keep mainly shrooms, ricordea, and zoas, a yellow coral banded shrimp, pistol shrimp, and pom pom boxer crab. I feed a few pellets twice per week. I run a Poly filter, GFO, and carbon but no skimmer. I have come to the realization that if I don't do weekly water changes (2 gallons) I start having excess nutrients.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Philly Frag View Post
            That is a nice offer that I might take you up on. I see you're in Clintonville, I'm not far away in Dublin. Having trouble sending a PM, maybe because I'm not a paying member yet or too few posts.
            Yeah, we are having issues with non-paid members being able to PM. I'm hoping to get it figured out soon.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Hollback View Post
              Looks like an awesome start!

              Two recommendations:

              I have a 10 month old IM Fusion 10 in my office at work. I highly recommend having an ATO. Keeping your salinity stable is a must for the health of the inhabitants, and with such a small volume, evaporation can mean major swings.

              I keep mainly shrooms, ricordea, and zoas, a yellow coral banded shrimp, pistol shrimp, and pom pom boxer crab. I feed a few pellets twice per week. I run a Poly filter, GFO, and carbon but no skimmer. I have come to the realization that if I don't do weekly water changes (2 gallons) I start having excess nutrients.
              I've been thinking about the ATO. I used one on my previous 30g AIO and loved it, but on that I had room to hide the float switches in the rear chamber. This tank has the filtration section inside the tank and there is no room for float switches and I don't want them in the display portion. It's been many years since I've shopped for reef equipment and one new thing seems to be optical switches. I'm looking into this but for now, fortunately, with the glass lid on the tank I'm losing less than 1/2 gallon a week and I check it every day. At some point I'll be away for several days or a week so I need to have a solution eventually.

              I'll be doing pretty much the same chemical filtration- GFO, carbon, and Polyfilter. I've always run Polyfilter in my tank.

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              • #8
                I remember seeing a build with the JBJ 8 gallon where someone put a Tunze Osmolator Nano 3152 in the overflow box. It wouldn't work in the display anyway as your water level drops in the overflow box. Also having a lid on a small tank like this will drastically reduce gas exchange.

                I wish I had a skimmer on my tank but as long as I keep up with water changes, chemical filtration seems to work. Another reason I stayed with inverts, less food being added. Every other month I think about adding a fish then I remember how I don't want to do more water changes.

                Are you just using the stock light?

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                • #9
                  I've been using the Smart ATO Micro on my 10 gallon for some time and love it. https://www.marinedepot.com/AutoAqua...FIDPAT-vi.html

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                  • #10
                    Dang, that is tiny! Looks like it is discontinued.

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                    • #11
                      I saw that Smart ATO, looks exactly like what I need. I've read mixed reviews on it though, glad it is working for you. I think I'll end up with something like it.

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                      • #12
                        D'oh! I wonder why it was nixed? You do have to keep the "eye" clean of algae etc. but has worked flawless for me, so far so good. *knocks on wood*

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                        • #13
                          Mac Attack!!
                          macro order 10_17 by James Sanderson, on Flickr

                          I decided that since this will be a Caribbean tank, and since I won't have a separate sump, some nice looking macro algae in the tank was in order. I just received an order today from live-plants.com and now I'm over filled with the stuff! That's one nice thing about small tanks and macros- for $50 you can fill your whole tank. But seriously I need to pass along a good bit of this so I'll be bringing it to the frag swap if anyone is interested.

                          The photo isn't that good- cell phone, side view of overfilled tank in shadow. I've got two types of Gracilaria, chaeto, and caulerpa prolifera up for grabs (or I'll always take a trade for mushrooms or zoas). The dark looking stuff is Hypnea Pannosa and is blue in color, and I don't know what the light red stufff is- a freebie. I don't think I have enough of the last two to pass on unless it's an offer I can't refuse .

                          I'm going to see how this does with the stock lighting over the next week or so. I've got a Plan B for lighting figured out and will pull the trigger on that at the first sign of decline.

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