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Tg's 40L Nano Marine Journal

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#1 tunagirll

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  • Joined: 30-January 14
  • Location: Mount Helena

Posted 14 July 2017 - 11:56 PM

This is my first time setting up a marine tank myself from scratch, should be an adventure.

Pics coming once it's daylight.




Fireaqua 35cm cube tank with back filter and plates

Tunze return pump ~ 700L

Tunze DOC skimmer 9001

Aquaone Thermosafe 50W heater

Tunze Nanostream 6040 stream pump with controller

Zetlight LED Nano 11W


Mixed bag of carbon and phosguard

Real reef rock - 4kg so far

Watercrete cement




The tank has been set up with all the above equipment. The Fireaqua kit comes with a generous number of sponges and filter media - which I removed from the tank as I have a skimmer and bag going in, instead.

I decided to build the hardscape as one or two solid pieces outside the tank to make it easier to put together, without risking scratching the tank. I marked out on cardboard the interior 'maximum' size I wanted for the hardscape, about 33 x 26cm. The edge protectors made handy freestanding height markers, of 27cm maximum height for the hardscape. This layout gives me room to clean the glass easily, keep good flow in the tank and help ensure plenty of negative space in the scape. I also marked lines at each third to help composition.



Using a few photos as inspiration I started my hardscape by decimating the reef rock into much smaller pieces. I have picked a rough layout as a C curve with an arch and plenty of holes. I'd like to say it has a plan, but to be honest I'm just mixing and matching as I go along.



This evening I started with the two main bases I need and built them both up around 15cm. The section on the right now also has its first porthole about 2 inches in diameter. The watercrete was easy to work with, and after cementing the base pieces and the first arch piece, I've left them to dry and harden overnight. I had a go at embedding some reef chips in the cement to help improve the look, but it's too fiddly to try to do both, so I've resigned myself to leaving the prettying up once it's all done and set.





Tomorrow I will cement the bottom of the base pieces so that they will sit stably in the tank, since there will be an arch above with some weight.


Edited by tunagirll, 15 July 2017 - 11:06 AM.

#2 tunagirll

  • Forum Member
  • Joined: 30-January 14
  • Location: Mount Helena

Posted 15 July 2017 - 11:15 AM

Everything set nicely last night. Added a few more pieces, building up the base to a more finished look and bulking up the weight bearing section.




Making sure that the top down layout isn't bulging out to the edges, and that there is going to be room to place zoas etc on the sides with adequate light.




I've gone for a bit of a swirl effect on both bases, but this is as far as the swirl goes curve wise, to make sure that the archway is going to be very strong and stable.





Continued building up the base of the arch to make it more solid, even managed to get another little porthole in :) Because there is quite a bit of cement going on, putting in lots of portholes should help flow in the tank (hopefully)


Built onto the back of the right hand base to give a nice finishing curve, and to continue to solidify and produce a wide and stable base - 2 birds with 1 stone. This will need more building up/cement as it's a little fragile right now - probably once this is dry I will flip it and fill out the base.



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