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While awaiting being able to get the 90 gallon going, I figured why not out to use the Fluval Spec V I got at PetSmart for $30. Clearance + coupon = win.




Going on my desk next to my bed. Yup, in front of a window. I'm hoping that since a.) I've never opened these blinds in 2 years, b.)I never plan to open them and c.) I'm going to be putting a removable background on the tank it should be okay regarding algae growth


I ordered a new return pump (Mini-Jet 606/Aqueon 600), lights (Zetlight Pico LED) and 5 pounds of dry pukani rock from BRS to start with.

I'm still going to need a heater and new media basket for the sumpy area, as well as some sand of course, though not sure where to get such a small amount of sand without buying a 20 pound bag and wasting sand. While yea id eventually need it for the 90 gallon I'd have no way to keep it live till then.

I still have my bucket of instant ocean salt as I use it to make ky hermit crabs water, it's over half full, so that should cover salt for now though I'd like to buy a fresh bucket at some point.

I'm leaning mostly towards zoas and maybe some LPS if the light allows it. It's a very cheap light $50 so who knows. Should be fine for softies/zoas though.


Haven't thought about what kinds of livestock would fit in this tank. Also thinking about building an alternative cover for it so it's 100% safe for jumpers.

Also need to plug the bottom hole(s) for thr intake.

Pretty stoked to be back in the hobby :3

Also, plasti-dip for the background? Or just good old fashioned black background paper and Vaseline? I want it to be easily removed without worries of scratching so it can be viewed from all sides in the future.

(Yay sideways photos)

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I'd use the vinyl background stuff. The hardest part is getting it without air bubbles, but if you can do that, it's a lot less to worry about than painting or plasti dip.

I'll just say from my experience when I had mine going, don't stock with fish unless you want to do very frequent water changes. Volume is just too small for anything that could be considered a low maintenance tank with any fish in it. You could do like zoas, softies, ricordea, and sexy shrimp or other small inverts.

Not sure what your budget is, but the via aqua 50w ti heaters with the external controller fit in the rear very well. They're one of the better quality heaters I've used. The external controller is much better than the ones with the dial on the heater itself especially in cramped spaces like this.

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Very nice! Where did you find the coupon? I'm seeing it on clearance for $84, wondering how you got it down that low.

During the most recent Meet The Pets event, there were coupons handed out, one being $10 off a tank over $39. At my store the price was at $41 and we had one we found in the back, after my associate discount it came to $29 and change :3

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Something for the super duper heavy (sarcasm) rock to sit on. Figured it may helo keep the sand where I want as well.


Finally got myself a (not super nice) drill. So many projects can be finished now


My mixing station > your mixing station.

Finally a way to keep the dog hair out. Had to go into my porch closet to look for a pump and I can say with certainty that there will be a ton of things ill be getting rid of when we move. Holy moly its packed in there.

Still waiting on Wednesday for the rock and light. Found some dead/dry rock from my old tank in the closet as well... Sweet.

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I just realized my tank will almost be livestock ready by tomorrow night (besides a smaller heater and waiting on the upgrade pump to arrive)

Rock and light will be here tomorrow. Got some sand today. Water is mixed (need to check salinity)

I need to apply the roll of black background to the best of my abilities with a credit card and a lot of Vaseline.

And attempt to cut a proper portion of the egg crate material for the bottom of the tank.

Big updates hopefully tomorrow!

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You got mail!


5 pounds pukani dry rock, zetlight LED light



Added sand and first bucket of water. Started mixing more.








Nice light. I like the look and the color of it. It does stick out a bit far but I should be able to modify it easily once I get the dremel.

Now I'm just waiting to make more water, then running with the stock pump and filter floss for a bit. Also adding temporary eyesore heater till I order a new low profile one. Not much will be done till the end of the month when the first new job paycheck comes in. Besides upgrading the pump when it arrives.

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Thanks! I'm doing my best to not cut corners and 'try' to take my time. It's moving quite a bit quicker than I thought, though!


All full! Have the stock pump running with lots o' filter floss in the media chamber to help clear that water up a bit. Now we wait. Lol

Def looking into adding onto the rockwork. Looks teensy with the tank full, though I like the style of it, making a came

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Tiny but much more powerful pump (after modifications). Tank face for scale.


Link to how to mod the filter to fit in return area of a Fluval Spec V^^


Clear waters!


New pump down in there


Hard to photograph but, water movement!? Even with cruddy stock nozzle pointed 45 degrees in a downward direction.. Noice

Will get a plain round return nozzle to replace the stock one, should help with flow :3


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So I'm going to be trying out this salt mix. It comes in a good size fir me, and in a resealable watertight container, which is what really sold me considering the tank is so small and I'll not be needing a huge bucket anytime soon.

I did also pick up 5 gallons of saltwater from work to do a couple water changes while things are cycling. Ammonia, nitrite, nitrate were through the roof when I tested today.

Still haven't decided on my inverts yet. No fish. Im pretty set on a pom pom crab though. Need to do more research on what all won't battle to the death in such a small space.

Im already keeping my eyes peeled for any rasta zoa frags *winkwinknudgenudge*

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Tested my water at work Friday, tank was def cycling. Ammonia, nitrite, nitrate were rhroiugh the roof. Did a 2.5 gallon water change last night and another this morning to get the ammonia down to a less lethal to bacteria level.


Looking less kool-aid than before.

I'm using Stress Zyme marine that i had from the old tank, figured it couldn't hurt to try

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  • 3 weeks later...

Cool little setup! I had one of those tanks new in box sitting in my office for a while waiting to be a project until I gifted it to a friend who wanted a setup for his kid. Glad to see you followed through with it, I'm following along.

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Tank is finally cycled woot woot!

Added my initial inverts. Two blue leg hermies, an emerald crab and a snail

Also got two little frags of palys and zoas to start with.


CUC did a pretty good job with the diatoms

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  • 2 weeks later...

I have a Evo V too, been setup since September. I upgraded the light to a 18" Current Orbit Marine LED that fits perfect. Also picked up a Intank media basket with the adjustable surface skimmer. Love this little tank.


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  • 1 month later...
  • 1 month later...

Long tome no see. Having too much fun at work [emoji14]

Yesterday the itty bitty reef got a huge lighting upgrade. Bryan at work was getting rid of his Ai Prime, and I jumped on it. My first time having a light that isnt a random cheap brand.

I haven't gotten to tinker with it much, and it IS overkill for a 5 gallon, buuuut, so much nicer than the Zetlight one.



I have the peak at around 60% for now, couldn't decide where to start.

I had gotten two rock flower nems, and not long after I caved and had a Yasha Goby for two days, until I accidentally grabbed what I thought were blue leg hermits, annnd they ate the goby. :(


He was great.

The rock flower nems were great till one ran off and poofed. Then the other one got very upset, and I saw yesterday while getting the Prime plugged in, that the heater has been unplugged... which explains the rock flower nems being pissed

Other than that not much new. Added three more snails, and have just been letting things grow.


They were so pretty when I got them D:

Parameters have been spot on. OH! I made another DIY auto top off, which has been SO nice for a tiny tank.

That my little update. I need to get out and go looking for more coral, but working at a LFS means I'm out when every other store is also closing [emoji14]

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