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My 315G Reload Build


Hello fellow addicts! 

Timing and finances have finally lined up for me to build my dream tank. I fell in love with the dimensions of this tank years ago, and been impatiently waiting. 

Quick History about myself: 

First got my salt water thumb wet in January of 2012. Had no idea what I was doing, but found a complete set up on Craigslist for $500. It was a 75g Acrylic DAS system, and was actually a pretty cool tank. Came with fish, live rock, a few softy and lps corals, pumps, crappy t5's, old bioballs in the back sump section, and what I later found to be Nitrates in the 80ppm+ range. Found out pretty quick what ich was, how expensive fish and coral were, and how much I did not know about the hobby. Regardless, I loved every minute of it and dove in head first. 8 months later we moved from Wylie to Ovilla and I started my 120g. Also had several small tanks in the meantime. I have learned a ton from this site and met many of you. I have bought and sold many coral, did a few frag shows, and at one point, was selling across the states through Reef2Reef. 

Eventually I got burned out. My 120g was full of great looking coral, but out of real estate. I quickly learned that the reason I enjoy the hobby is for the creating, building phase, learning, and figuring things out. Once my tank was full and out of became boring. I started a few small tanks, just to scratch my itch, but it didn't suffice. I hate to admit it, but I got busy with starting my own business about 2 years ago, and my tank started to decline. People's reaction to my tank went from "Wow" to "Oh that is nice....." Thought about getting out of the hobby all together, but knew I would immediately miss it and jump back in. 

Business and Family life has slowed down and came at a time where my passion has been reignited, so I am ready to go! I have never done a build before, but hoping to get your input and opinions as I go. 

Topic starter Posted : 08/25/2020 11:33 am
Lisa liked

Awesome, can't wait to see it come together! Keep us posted!

Posted : 08/25/2020 11:38 am
Eric81 liked

Equipment (as of this moment): 

- Tank: Used 1 year old Planet Aquarium. 72x36x28.5. PVC bottom, two braces on top, single corner overflow with 2 drain and 2 return holes. Being my dream tank, I was skeptical of buying a used aquarium. I searched a few online tank builders, and they had a 6-12 month wait time. Found this one at a LFS, checked it out, and it is in great shape! Only a few minor scratches and very satisfied with it so far. 


IMG 2543


- Stand: Came with Steel framed Stand. I will eventually skin it with cabinets. Not sure on the type of canopy yet, depends on what light fixture I use. One of the things I am most excited about is all the room under the tank! My 120 had a 36" sump and 5 gallon ATO reservoir, which left 0 room for anything else. Also, I built the stand too short, which caused problems finding a Protein Skimmer that would fit and contributed to the storage issue.  

-  Sump: For now I will use the above mentioned Ruby26S Trigger Systems Sump. Eventually will get a bigger one, but geez they are proud of these acrylic rectangles! Found the perfect one online, only to see the price was more than what I paid for my tank...

- Lighting: Here is where I am struggling. On my 120, I had an 8 bulb ATI T5 fixture, with Reefbrite XHO's on each side. Had great success with them. I originally was thinking about going with a similar setup on this tank with a "60 ATI fixture with 60" Reefbrite Actinic Blue XHO's on each side. But now I am kind of leaning towards the new Radion G5's, just because of the ease and customization of them. Also, I might could forego a canopy, which would make cleaning the tank much easier. Opinions and suggestions are welcome!

- Plumbing: I am going to do my plumbing similar to this picture. After researching for several hours, I have put my order in through BRS. While not cheap, I went with 2 check valves for my return line. I didn't like spending $56 a piece for them, but pretty sure my sump doesn't have the volume to absorb a siphon incident, if my tank loses power. I will consider it insurance. 


-Controller: I have an existing Apex Controller System (new version) with an extra energy bar. I also have the Classic Apex, that is currently running on my Red Sea tank. I already have all 16 plugs filled with equipment from my 120, so will need an extra energy bar at some point. I need to research and see if the old power bars are compatible or not. I ordered new PH and ORP probes, and am going to try and recalibrate my salinity probe, as I do not want to spend $130 for a new one. 

- Main Pump: EcoTech Vectra L2 Mobius Ready 3100 GPH

- Power Heads: This will be a bit of an experiment, until I figure out the best way to get the water moving like I want it. I want the option to have tons of flow and very random. After Scuba Diving in Cozumel for the past several years, I have experienced all different types of currents, and want to mimic the natural environment as much as possible. Going to start out with an IceCap 4K Gyre on one side, and my two MP40's (that I had on my 120) on the other side. Will probably end up getting another IceCap or break down and drop the coin on a new MP60. 

- Skimmer - TBD

- Rockwork - My favorite dive spot is the Palancar Caves in Cozumel. I want to try to mimic that and have something like this picture below. The shelf rock will allow plenty of room for coral frags and the caves will be entertaining for the fish. I ordered 75 lbs of Marcorocks Reef Saver Shelf Aquarium Dry Live Rock and will use the existing Pukani and Fiji rock from my 120, after an acid bath and bleach. Ordered some mortar and bulk super glue to do it right!

Rockscape 1

- Sand: Looking at 12 20lb bags of Carribsea Fiji Pink. It is a little courser than other sands, therefore won't get sucked up as much as some of the finer sands, when cleaning the tank. 

- Filters and reactors: Chaeto for sure, but the rest is still TBD. 

This post was modified 2 years ago by Eric81
Topic starter Posted : 08/25/2020 12:11 pm
Lisa liked

@eric81 - That aquascape is amazing.  Well done sir.

Posted : 06/01/2021 1:17 pm