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The Maroon Lagoon V2.0

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I think it's about time for me to kick off the build thread for my next tank, a 120 gallon reef ready Aqueon.

2014 and 2015 were tough for my tank with all my traveling for work and myriad of plagues that hit my 50 gallon. I decided if I'm to keep SPS alive and growing, I need larger water volume for stability and, of course, for more growth in livestock! My aim for this tank is to make it as self sustaining and automated as possible so I can be working away from home for weeks at a time and not come home to a coral cemetery.

My brother in law is a skilled professional welder, and he was able to cut and weld me a steel stand out of 2" square tubing. I sanded it down and took it to be powder coated because I plan on having this tank for a while. My philosophy is if you're going to invest in a tank, never cut corners and powder coating is the best protection for a steel stand. I want this stand well protected, so naturally a hot rod red would do just nicely
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I am currently in the process of making the skin for the stand. Since the stand has already been powder coated, I do not want to tap the steel and make any holes for moisture to enter and rust the stand from the inside out. In order to accomplish this I ordered some rare earth magnets that I will recess into the wood so I can attach panels to the stand via magnets. This will also allow me to take off all the stand panels to have complete access into my tank whenever maintenance is required.

I also got married in 2015, and one of the lessons I learned right off the bat is my wife hates all the testing equipment, syringes, cups, etc for the aquarium that tend to be left on counter tops around the tank. With limited space under the tank, I decided to install small drawers under the floor of the sump to house my small random equipment. The floor will sit atop and attach to braces that have pocket screw holes. With these braces I can attach two sets of drawers in the center.
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As of this moment I am waiting to get the drawer rails to attach before I can place the sump floor on it. Until I can get the drawers built and rails installed, the tank is stalled in progress.

I did rebuild my 29 gallon sump and added glass baffles that will hold up better than the 1/4 acrylic I tried to use on my last build. They failed pretty quickly... So I went with 1/8 glass sheets that I personally sanded for my own protection in the future, and partitioned three areas: protein skimmer on the left, return pump and heaters (with room for an additional pump) in the center, and a fuge on the right. So far the baffles have proven to be leak proof after a couple days holding water out of the center.
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I am still designing the hood and brainstorming, but I plan on using LEDs with the addition of 2x48" T5 bulbs.

More to come as progress is made.

Thoughts and suggestions welcome!

Thanks, and Gig 'em


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I also want to make my life easier when it comes to weekly maintenance, and refilling my top off in a crammed sump was always a pain. I decided to take the idea of many lazy/smart reefers and run a 1/4" line from the fish room to the tank so I can flip a switch and fill my ATO reservoir. I also ran Internet to the back of the tank for better internet connection to my apex.

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I also got a Foscam webcam so I can keep an eye on my tank while I'm away for work and adjust the Apex accordingly. Still working on getting camera access when I'm outside my own network though.

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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Hey, that's a trademarked, LazyTy RO/DI system setup! I hope you paid the usage rights!

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Ty I think I've made just enough changes to my setup to legally be clear of copyright infringement

I'll be the judge of that upon inspection.
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Nice. I like where this is heading. What a cool idea on the magnets to avoid drilling the stand.

Feel free to tell your wife it could always be worse- you could be washing filthy filter socks in her washer. grin.png

Anyway, I like it and can't wait to see this come together.

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Very interested in watching this take form:

In order to accomplish this I ordered some rare earth magnets that I will recess into the wood so I can attach panels to the stand via magnets. This will also allow me to take off all the stand panels to have complete access into my tank whenever maintenance is required.

That's how I'm envisioning my stand, I just don't know the details. Good luck w/ the build - that stand is hot!

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Nice. I like where this is heading. What a cool idea on the magnets to avoid drilling the stand.

Feel free to tell your wife it could always be worse- you could be washing filthy filter socks in her washer. grin.png

Anyway, I like it and can't wait to see this come together.

Haha, I will never let her know that sock filters exist and that people wash them in their laundry machines. That might be the straw that breaks the camels back of her patience with this hobby. whistle.gif

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What I'm worried about right now is that I made the refugium and protein skimmer reservoirs pretty deep, and with the return lines emptying at the top of the water line I don't want the water at the bottom to get stagnant. I'm trying to devise a way to create current in there to allow water to stir the whole area so detritus doesn't build up too quickly. Adding a small powerhead to each area is one option, but seems wasteful. I was thinking this morning that putting the return lines from my carbon/GFO reactors near the bottom of the refugium and the return line of the biopellets reactor near the bottom of the protein skimmer/near the intake of the protein skimmer would be good. That would allow water circulation and movement near the bottom of the reservoirs without adding more electronics to the sump. Eh??

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I wouldn't worry much about the detritus. I have a layer almost 1/2" deep in my sump. If it bugs you, you can always vacuum it out. I'd honestly rather it be in my sump where it's easily removable then allowing it to settle in my sand instead.

In my lower flow area of one of my baffles, I put two blocks of the ceramico media in there as putting it in low flow will help with denitrification (removal of nitrates). Putting them in high flow will help with nitrification (conversion of ammonia/nitrite to nitrate).

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I wouldn't worry much about the detritus. I have a layer almost 1/2" deep in my sump. If it bugs you, you can always vacuum it out. I'd honestly rather it be in my sump where it's easily removable then allowing it to settle in my sand instead.

In my lower flow area of one of my baffles, I put two blocks of the ceramico media in there as putting it in low flow will help with denitrification (removal of nitrates). Putting them in high flow will help with nitrification (conversion of ammonia/nitrite to nitrate).

Yeah, I bought some of those ceramic spheres back during the Black Friday sales to put in low flow areas for denitrification. I plan on following Oozarkawaters idea and put them in the bottom of my overflow. I was skeptical of that placement at first, but then I saw the swarms of pods on his and I become a believer.

It's not only detritus setting in the bottom, but I want to make sure that there is decent turn over in those areas to keep all the water cycling. What's the point in having macro algae to remove nutrients if tank water isn't filtering through it enough? Same with the protein skimmer, since the intake is at the bottom, I want to make sure the skimmer is skimming as much tank water as possible and not repeatedly skimming the same water trapped around it. Maybe I'm just overly concerned with water turnover in the sump...

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I like the race car red! I miss having water hooked to my tanks, totally worth it.

For detritus in the sump, why not add a stack of rubble and a small brittle star? They clean up great in the display.

Edited by corsair66

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I like the race car red! I miss having water hooked to my tanks, totally worth it.

For detritus in the sump, why not add a stack of rubble and a small brittle star? They clean up great in the display.

That's not a bad idea with a small serpent star. I definitely plan on placing some coral rubble in the fuge for pods to have a place to reproduce and thrive. A detritivore wouldn't be a bad idea at all.

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Looks good. The only thing I have to add is leveling feet for the stand would make your life easier.

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Looks good. The only thing I have to add is leveling feet for the stand would make your life easier.

Yeah I talked to my brother in law about welding some into the stand, but it never happened. Luckily he did a good job and the stand is pretty level as is. There may be a slight gradient from front to back, but hardly enough to notice. Nothing a thin wedge can't fix before putting the tank on

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The ones I used slip into the square tubing, no welding required. I got them from granger.

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I wouldn't worry much about the detritus. I have a layer almost 1/2" deep in my sump. If it bugs you, you can always vacuum it out. I'd honestly rather it be in my sump where it's easily removable then allowing it to settle in my sand instead.

In my lower flow area of one of my baffles, I put two blocks of the ceramico media in there as putting it in low flow will help with denitrification (removal of nitrates). Putting them in high flow will help with nitrification (conversion of ammonia/nitrite to nitrate).

DENITRIFICATION?!

Who wants to put a cover over their ceramic doodads so I can sample the gas and see how efficient they are?

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I wouldn't worry much about the detritus. I have a layer almost 1/2" deep in my sump. If it bugs you, you can always vacuum it out. I'd honestly rather it be in my sump where it's easily removable then allowing it to settle in my sand instead.

In my lower flow area of one of my baffles, I put two blocks of the ceramico media in there as putting it in low flow will help with denitrification (removal of nitrates). Putting them in high flow will help with nitrification (conversion of ammonia/nitrite to nitrate).

DENITRIFICATION?!

Who wants to put a cover over their ceramic doodads so I can sample the gas and see how efficient they are?

You know I'm always down for an experiment!

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I wouldn't worry much about the detritus. I have a layer almost 1/2" deep in my sump. If it bugs you, you can always vacuum it out. I'd honestly rather it be in my sump where it's easily removable then allowing it to settle in my sand instead.

In my lower flow area of one of my baffles, I put two blocks of the ceramico media in there as putting it in low flow will help with denitrification (removal of nitrates). Putting them in high flow will help with nitrification (conversion of ammonia/nitrite to nitrate).

DENITRIFICATION?!

Who wants to put a cover over their ceramic doodads so I can sample the gas and see how efficient they are?

You're always welcome over to my house for obscure experiments Ian. Just curious though, what would be your strategy at approaching that challenge? Tiny little inverted cup to collect gas samples?

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Yeah. Problem

Is the water would carry away the gas. You'd have to isolate the media, which would make it useless for you.

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Yeah. Problem

Is the water would carry away the gas. You'd have to isolate the media, which would make it useless for you.

I have 2 blocks seeded and ready to go Ian. I can lose one for a couple of weeks for the sake of science.

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Well the ceramic spheres will sit at the bottom of the overflow where there isn't much water movement. So if N bubbles formed, they would float easily into some kind of trap. If the trap had a very thin tube attached to the top, you would probably be able to draw a gas sample from it without the risk of knocking the collection trap and losing your sample. But if the N is a dissolved gas in the water column and is released at the surface interface, then yeah, you'd probably need to isolate the whole water column in a more controlled setting.

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I would think it would be the more dissolved variety in that scenario. I would also worry about flowing water near the area where the gas has collected causing it to dissolve back into the water and skewing the concentration of collected gas. Just thoughts but Ian could probably clarify since he's been living the dream in Grad school. Haha.

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Would water around the gas pocket reduce the concentration of N though? If nitrogen bubbles did collect in the trap, I could understand it being diluted with other gases like CO2 or O2 present in the area, but only if they were creating bubbles. O2 probably wouldn't be a factor in this scenario with the lack of photosynthesis, and the ratio of CO2 and N gas would remain fairly constant (assuming the rate of CO2 production isn't more rapid than N, diluting the gas composition of the trap). The nitrogen probably wouldn't react with other gases in the sample atmosphere since nitrogen is relatively inert, allowing it to be fairly well preserved in the collection container.

Or perhaps you're afraid that N bubbles would dissolve back into solution from the trap leaving behind other gases skewing the composition of the atmosphere. However, I don't believe the physical properties of nitrogen would allow this. Nitrogen fixation is more difficult than simply dissolving into water (i.e lightning, certain legumes, and important microbes like Nitrosomonas and Azotobacter). Ian is much better suited for this discussion than I am since I only took a undergrad courses in micro years ago. Still, fun to talk about! I feel like I'm a student again punk.gif

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