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Old 06-03-2013, 09:02 PM
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Default Asylumdown's Maybe Baby tank - Input wanted!

Since my house is going to be sold this summer, it's time to start planning a new system. I'm not 100% sure of where this system will go (as we haven't bought a new house yet), so I'm hoping to come up with more of a rudimentary idea that can be modified once we know where it can live. I also hope to learn from my mistakes with this system, but keep what worked well. I am very interested in input.

What I want -

Minimal fish, this tank will be a coral show piece, so only a few showstoppers with loads of personality that will hopefully be trained to eat out of my hands

Must haves
- Powder blue tang
- Copper Band Butterfly
- a small harem of some kind of rare wrasse

Wants (if the tank is big enough)
- doliatus rabbit
- some cool small fish like a yasha goby or a watchman/pistol pair
- mandarin goby pair

Based on that list, I know I'm looking at a tank that's in the 150 gallon range minimum would everyone here agree? Does anyone have thoughts on what shape it would need to be? The Powder Blue is the limiting factor I think as it needs to most swimming room, but if the tank was a cube do you think it could be smaller?

Other things I want -

Tank:
- Not nearly as tall as this tank, I HATE having to get up on a ladder to feed/do anything. My rabbit fish doesn't even know what nori is because of that ladder. I want the stand to be the exact height necessary for me to be able to touch the bottom of the inside of the tank with my feet flat on the floor.
- External beananimal style overflows
- Low iron glass on at the three visible sides if it was in the middle of the room, the two visible sides if it's in a corner
- Something other than a standard rectangle, I was thinking something cubish, but maybe not exactly square. Also slightly shallower (Concept will be getting a call when it's time to make this happen),
- I'm thinking 20 inches deep? Think Reefwars' Bonsai tank Meets Zoaelite's zoa/paly species tank meets Lastlight's 93.
- 36X36X20 is roughly 112 gallons and would fit in a door if you turned it on it's side, think that would be enough for a powder blue? Would you be able to do a tank that size rimless or would it need Eurobracing? Anything larger and square could become a serious issue to design a room around. I was also considering 32X40X20 which is almost the same number of gallons, but I think that might defeat the visual impact of a cube?
- The tank will not be built in to the house the way the current one is.

Contents/Livestock:

- Either a shallow sandbed, or that WICKED cool tile bottom Levi did on his zoa/paly tank.
- open, low profile rock scape that will be built by actually cutting and constructing something out of the water before hand, no more stacked stones
- SPS dominant with only a few very choice LPS and zoas

Sump:
This is going to have to be pretty custom I think. I really love the way I do water changes on my current tank, so even though this system won't be built in to the house with such good access to drains and plumbing to refill it from afar, I'd still like to be able to do super easy water changes. However the sump is designed it needs to still be able to accommodate something where relatively large water changes can be done out of the sump using pumps, as I'll quit the hobby before I have to go back to hand balling buckets of water out of a garbage can. The more water volume that can be changed each time, the better. I'm open to any suggestions. Whether or not an entire separate chamber or tank that can be isolated from the main system is required will depend on whether or not I have space to have both a large R/O reservoir and a large reservoir of pre-mixed salt water. If I don't have the space for a large reservoir of pre-mixed salt water, the sump/cabinet will either need a chamber or separate tank that can be taken offline, drained, refilled with R/O water, mixed to NSW levels, then put back online. I'm leaning towards wanting it this way anyway as it reduces the amount of infrastructure the tank requires in the rest of the house.

Equipment/plumbing:
- Biopellets have worked incredibly well for me, so I'm going to keep using them. I can go with a smaller reactor than what I have now obviously, and I'm hoping for something recirculating.
- A GFO reactor that's fed by a t-off the return line. Having an extra pump for my GFO reactor in my sump now drives me nuts.
- return pump - I want it to be internal this time. This tank needs to be so much quieter than my current tank
- I'm thinking either Radion Pros or Mitras for light, How many will depend on the final dimensions, but I want a max of three units of anything, two would be even better.
- I'm partial to vortech's for pumps, but there needs to be as few wires visible as humanely possible.
- I may need a chiller if we buy the place we've been looking at as it doesn't have AC and is almost the entire south wall of the building it's in. It also has radiant heat instead of forced air so I'm not sure how I'd deal with the humidity in that case.

Cabinet/ enclosure
- this thing will need to look like a piece of high end, modern furniture. I'd like it to be on a steel stand if it will give more room inside the actual cabinet but the skin needs to look at home in a room with Barcelona chairs and a low profile natuzzi couch. A completely removable skin that is attached by magnets is something that I'm kind of toying with, but the details of how that's constructed and what it would look like are still fuzzy. I'm thinking boards of Medex that are mitred really, really carefully so that when they're all on it doesn't look like they have seams, then painted to make them look like highly polished sealed concrete. It would make the tank look like it was sitting on a concrete pillar.
- I'd really like to stay away from a canopy of any kind, but with a 20" deep tank the risk of fish jumping is pretty high and I'm also not in love with the idea of putting an ugly screen on top of something that will be built to look like a piece of art. I'm also not sure how I'd hang the lights
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