Funlad3's 45 Gallon 3' x 2' x 1' Acropora Lagoon

Funlad3

Well-known member
I was very unhappy with the pictures I took last night, so I waited until all of my lights were out to try again. I shot these top down above the water with my old Canon T3i and used standard Blue LEDs in a pointer to spotlight the corals. I still need to play around with my custom white balance to dial back some of the orange-shifting on the fluorescence, but this is pretty close to what the corals look like under blues with the orange Aquashella filter glasses.

Here's my spath frag. Under daylights, it looks like it wants to turn purple, blue, and green, but the fluorescence it kicks off is orange/pink/red. I really like this piece:
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Here's the rainbow acan again. Under direct LED spotlighting, this thing is absolutely unreal:
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And here's my weird green one. It's definitely gonna morph on me, but the corallites should stabilize at yellow/orange on a *bright* green base. The red polyps don't hurt either:
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Funlad3

Well-known member
Tonight I glued down the test SPS frags and took some daylight shots. Everything's doing well so far, so I might move some new frags over tomorrow or Monday. I've *almost* got a working white balance for pictures, but for now, enjoy some slightly overexposed pictures.

Spath under daylight:IMG_4814.JPG

Weird Table:
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Rainbow Acan looking lovely:
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Funlad3

Well-known member
I just grabbed some coral from Mike ( @930reef ), and they're way larger than I was expecting! They came out clean from my Bayer dip, and they started putting out polyps within literal seconds of hitting the tank. Once they settle in more, I might cut smaller chunks off of each and move the remaining colony downstairs into my 125 Gallon tank to save space in the lagoon.

WWC Grafted Cap (you can see how my white balance is still slightly shifted towards red and away from green; I'm still tinkering) :
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ORA Birds of Paradise:
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Funlad3

Well-known member
I just got done gluing in eight new frags from some of my colonies that I've been collecting for the past few weeks. I'll take some pictures of them tomorrow once they've had some time to settle in from banging around in the bucket while I dipped and rinsed them.

Here's what they looked like right before the dip went in:
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Funlad3

Well-known member
So today while I was out picking up another colony for my holding tank, I had the opportunity to make a stupid purchase. I love making stupid purchases, so I added these two fish to the quarantine tank with the pair of boxfish and the naso tang:

Pair of juvenile Scribbled Angels:
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The larger angel is still a little stressed and chased mysis around but didn't eat:
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The smaller angel is happy as can be and ate everything that floated by:
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I have some brine shrimp hatching overnight, and they should definitely be enough to entice the larger Scribbled to eat. I'm hoping the male boxfish finally eats something too; it's going on two weeks without eating. Either way, I'm planning on adding a half dose of copper to the QT tomorrow and to bring it up to full strength on Friday so that I can start my three week countdown to moving everyone into the lagoon!
 

Funlad3

Well-known member
And as promised, here are some pictures of the acros I added last night. Some are happier than others right now, but I already managed to pull great polyp extension on everything after I cut and glued it last night. Now everything can recover, settle in, and color up and grow.

I'm very excited to see what this one does; the main colony bleached out in shipping, but there are some weird pink/orange highlights that should pull through:
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This piece is similar, but it's a slightly different species. I want to say it's a Clathrata, but I'm not sure. If this piece does what similar ones have for me in the past, it might get gold between the branches:
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I got this piece as a green/grey mess because I liked the growth form, and it might totally surprise me. After about a week, it's already pulling green with blue on the coralites and red tips with red polyps, so it'll be fun to watch settle in:
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This piece is smaller than the other ones and got more banged up when I was mixing the dip around in the bucket. I'm hoping it turns purple and red:
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I cut one of the shaded leaves of the Grafted Cap to save on space. I'm curious to see how long it'll take for the faded part to get its color back:
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This ugly thing is actually a piece of branching Strawberry Shortcake. I've been trying to find a piece of SSC that branches (instead of tables) for years, so I'm thrilled to finally have one. It might take a little longer than some of the other pieces to color up, but it'll be worth the wait:
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This might just be one of my favorite acros ever. It came in as a densely tabling colony with a green base, red branches, and blue tips. It lost a ton of color in transit, but the PE has been good and I think it's over the worst of its stress. Time to sit back and wait:
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I ordered this one as a blue table with green polyps, and it is definitely… not that anymore. If the colony didn't perfectly match its photo from before I ordered it, I would have thought that I got the wrong piece. The red is already picking up a metallic fluorescence while the base goes back to a more neutral white/blue, so this one definitely still has some more changing to do:
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And finally, I have this guy. It might go neon green with gold/yellow corallites, or it might do something totally different. Time will tell:
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I've already got some more corals in the pipeline, but it's finally about time for me to start tracking down other pieces locally. I can't wait to start collecting/trading with everyone!
 

Funlad3

Well-known member
Just in case it was unclear, I've been known to make impulse buys. I got a small Moorish Idol at a local shop today, and I swear it's the last fish that's going in this QT for this batch. For those keeping track, that's a pair of boxfish, a pair of angels, a naso and an idol all in one 20 long. I foresee many water changes in my future...

I'm still waiting on the larger scribbled angel and the male boxfish to eat. I've had the boxfish for two weeks now and haven't seen it eat once. Meanwhile, the female is actively eating whatever I put in the tank, including the airline hose that I used to drip acclimate the idol. The copper is up to full concentration right now, and if anything, the boxfish and larger angel were more interested in food today than I've seen them. I'm hoping that they have/had an underlying parasitic infection that the copper is knocking back and helping to restore their appetite, but time will tell. I'll probably start adding Prazi to everyone's food next week.

Bagged up:
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A very packed QT:
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Funlad3

Well-known member
Today I finally got some projects done that I've been waiting on parts for.

I needed to modify my old Precision Marine calcium reactor to fit under my stand. The base plate was too wide with the pump and reactor body sitting side my side, so I had to modify and rebuild it. Here's the reactor when I dragged it out of the basement:
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Here it is cleaned and taken apart:
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Then I chopped it in half with my table saw:
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I had to order some 1/2" and 3/8" PVC fittings to get everything hooked into the Eheim pump, so I went ahead and bought a furniture grade Side Tee fitting so that I could save on space and run my incoming water and CO2 lines right next to each other. The fitting isn't technically pressure rated, but it'll hold up just fine:
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Here's the whole reactor put back together and fitting neatly under the side of the stand:
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I also needed to do some light modification on my skimmer lid so that I could get the CO2 scrubber plumbed in. I drilled a 5/8" hole and tapped it for 1/2" MIP so that I could thread on an outlet for the scrubber to draw air from. I also drilled a 5/16" hole for a float switch that I'm going to wire up later to shut the skimmer down before it overflows and floods the CO2 scrubber, which would crash the tank. I also melted some vinyl tubing to make a cap for one of the silencer inlets; the CO2 scrubber basically acts as a second silencer, plus the whole thing operates as a closed loop, keeping the air draw silent:
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Here's the CO2 scrubber on the front end of my sump. There's still plenty of room to access everything that I need:
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These equipment additions/modifications should help me keep my alk stable and my pH high. I like to run high nutrients, high light, and high alk, but the tank is still way too new/clean for me to be able to safely do that. Now I have to wait for the fish to clear QT. I'm sure there will be more coral additions in the mean time.
 

Funlad3

Well-known member
Yesterday, I installed some arcade buttons and wired them up to an Apex Break Out Box from @jayjigga . If I press the red button, my skimmer and all of my pumps turn off for ten minutes. If I press the black button, the delay ends and everything turns back on right away. I tested my programming to take some pictures of some of the corals:
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This one is new. It's a pink spath with blue tips and green polyps on the growth tips:
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And here are some other pictures from around the tank. The frags are all looking healthier with more PE and thicker tissue, but the tank is still too clean for them to want to grow or color up much:
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(Ignore the acros on the tile; I picked up some new pieces and totally burned them up with over-concentrated Bayer. I'm going to give them a week or two to recover before sharing any pictures.)
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Acans are still holding great color!
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I'm going to start throwing in more food and might turn on the calcium reactor to see if I can force any growth and mineral consumption from the corals. Everything is happy, I just need to get them to start growing!
 

Funlad3

Well-known member
I finally got around to building my ATO bracket yesterday. For the low low cost of some scrap acrylic and about an hour, it turned out pretty well. It's slides over the last baffle in my sump so that the floats sit in the return section. I might move the low-water bracket down a little to cut down on power cycling, but the programming through the Apex Break Out Box definitely works. Onto the next project.

The bracket:
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Installed:
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Funlad3

Well-known member
Very nice. Where did you get the tank from?
I built it from some 20 and 40 gallons that I stripped. The next display tank that I build, I'm going to order some low iron glass and get the edges ground all fancy. For now, this will do. :)
 

GugsJr

TeamCR
I built it from some 20 and 40 gallons that I stripped. The next display tank that I build, I'm going to order some low iron glass and get the edges ground all fancy. For now, this will do. :)
Ohbwow, I missed that. Maybe I'll try that. I'm thinking about downsizing my 180. I wanted a 36x24x20 rimless
 
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