Ace's 55G Build Thread

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Ace25

www.centralcoastreefclub. com
Oct 3, 2005
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Tank is 48"x15"x18" and was given to me by a fellow reefer. Stand and 20G sump were included. This tank is to "upgrade" the 2 29G tanks I have in my bedroom. My tanks have been multiplying lately and I need to get it back under control so I will have 2 main tanks, a 75G and this 55G and I will keep 1 29G just as a "clownfish growout tank" so when my clowns have babies (they do every 11-14 days) I can try and raise some.

So to start out, tank was old and dirty, so first thing, clean it up and let run with a gallon of vinegar for several days. Even after days of soaking, coraline did not want to come off and left what appears to be etching in the back glass. So since I couldn't save the clearity of the back glass and have a see through tank I decided to paint the back and bottom black along with all sides of the sump.

Tank when I first got it.


After cleaning, painting, and cleaning up the stand.


This tank I plan on going solely with an ATS for all filtration. So I built this ATS which uses a full size screen of 10.5" x 13.5". The screen will be 10.5" in the slot and have a 600gph pump with a valve to adjust it down if needed. I will be using 42w 2700k CFL bulbs.


And this is what it looks like in the sump.


Still a bunch of work to do.. build a "light holder" out of metal conduit to hang my lights from, build a screen top for the tank, glue the ATS together, cut slot for screen, and rough up screen. Should have all that done by the end of the day tomorrow and then I can start filling it up with water. So that is the progress for today.
 
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fsn77

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I must admit, I completely dislike the dimensions of a standard 55g for a reef, but this one with the overflow and glass brace seems pretty nice! I'd even be tempted to set up a 55g if I came across one like this for a good price.
 

Ace25

www.centralcoastreefclub. com
Oct 3, 2005
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This isn't the standard 55G size, it is 2" wider and 2" shorter than a standard 55... I agree with you, I dislike standard 55 dimensions 48"x13"x20" (which is what I use as a sump on my 75G). Ya, I couldn't pass up the price.. FREE. ;)
 

greech

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They sell 55's with these dimensions at my Petsmart. I just noticed this the other day. Should work out great for you Ace. Look forward to seeing what you do with it. What are you doing with lighting? Using a combo off your other tanks?
 

Ace25

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Oct 3, 2005
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For now I plan on just using the LED light off my 29G, just adding optics to it to give it more punch. I have some work to do on my 75G LED light (I want to replace 12 whites with 4 RGB MC-E LEDs) and also get my reef angel controller + PWM drivers working, once that is done I will have extra LEDs to use on this tank. With the 24 LED light from my 29G it is already bleaching SPS frags within a day if I turn the whites up past 50% in that tank, so I figured if I put optics on it, raise the light up quite a bit to give good spread, it will be plenty of light for the corals I plan on having in this tank for now (which is mainly softies/bubble tip anemones).

Good to know they sell this size tank at local box stores. This is the first time I have seen a tank with these dimensions and the first I heard of box stores selling them but I really do like the dimensions of it. It is amazing how just taking 2" off the top and adding it to the depth makes a 55G tank go from really unappealing to a pretty nice looking tank. When the person giving it away posted, he said it was a 60G tank, but after putting the dimensions in a calculator it came out to 55G (which I see that a lot, stores/people selling tanks as 60G when they are really 55G, mostly this is on acrylic tanks).
 

Ace25

www.centralcoastreefclub. com
Oct 3, 2005
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Why are there always a million little things to do ahead of time before you can put water in the tank? ;) Maybe it is just me and a case of OCD where I seem to find nit picky little things to keep busy. So, ATS all glued together, light bar built and installed, and 1/4" clear netting/screen top made and installed. First time messing with metal conduit for a light holder and first time making a clear mesh top (although I have had the supplies to make one for over a year, just never got around to doing it). I also cut out all the silicone holding the top plastic frame to the tank, cleaned it good with a razor blade and alcohol and added new silicone to it yesterday. The previous owner told me there was one little spot on the front pane on the left half of the tank that if you splashed or had a wave going in the tank a streak of water would run down the front where the silicone was bad, so what was why I resealed it. Nothing structural, and another first for me, removing old silicone from a frame and redoing it. Always new stuff to learn in this hobby.

So not much different in the picture.. you can see the light bar and netting installed. Feels like I am working on this tank 18 hours a day for the past week.. I can't wait to get water in it. I am thinking one more day of minor little things to clean up on the tank and then Saturday I can start putting water in it and getting it going with stuff out of my spare 29G that is just stuffed with live rock.

 

Ace25

www.centralcoastreefclub. com
Oct 3, 2005
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Here it what it looks like with just the contents of one of my 29G tanks.. I didn't realize I had so much rock.. obviously most will have to go because I have another 29G full of rocks/corals that need to go into this tank. The plan now is to let the tank sit for a week with the current rocks to seed the sand bed and screen, then next week I can move my nicer corals and fish over and hang the LED light above.

 

Slappy*McFish

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Nice. Those tanks are commonly sold as 60G with those particular dimensions, though it is actually closer to 55g. I'd take that tank any day over a standard 55g. Nice pickup.
 
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