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Drop-Off Tank Build – Episode 7: Light Installation + Which Wavemakers Should We Use?

 

Hello Folks, Robert from Marine Depot here and welcome to episode #7 of our 70 gallon drop off tank build.  The tank is really progressing and we are finally getting to the more exciting equipment and even adding some livestock!  Last time, all of you voted on which light fixture we should use and the Kessil Ap700 LED light won the vote.  So stick around to watch us install the lighting, get the fixture programmed, and check out the first live additions to our tank!

The Kessil AP700 is the most advanced light to date from Kessil because of the integrated wifi capabilities that allow you to connect and program the light fixture wirelessly from your tablet or smartphone without the need of any extra equipment.

 

 

The fixture is very powerful, with a maximum wattage draw of 185 watts the light is strong enough to provide up to a 36” wide spread of light over a demanding reef tank.  It has two dense matrix multi-diode LED banks with hybrid optics that blend the light in such away that eliminates hot spots and emits an even spread over your tank.

For this peninsula style drop off tank, the light needed to be mounted parallel so we opted for the suspension kit. We took our measurements to ensure the light was perfectly centered and then went to work getting the anchors set into place on the ceiling. Removing the four screws on top of the fixture allows you to easily attached the Kessil suspension kit to the light.

 

 

The single power cord makes for a clean install and upon applying power, the light was quite impressive and provided a perfect spread of light over the entire tank with no shadowing or dark-spots and it sets right about 12” from the water’s surface.

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We immediately programmed the light fixture using the Kessil App.  You can connect to the light in two ways, one option is to connect using the onboard WiFi or you can connect the light to your home WiFi network so you can gain access without having to change any WiFi settings on your tablet or smartphone.  Either way you decide, the App is really easy to use.  It has three presets to start which you can utilize or use as a template to create your own preset.  I started with the standard preset as a platform and then adjusted the colors and spectrum to our preference and saved the custom quick set.

 

 

When creating a program you can adjust color, intensity and the time of day for each set point.  You can then also add effects into the daily schedule as well as a lunar cycle.  It also has a manual mode in which you can manually adjust the color and intensity as well as play with the weather effects.

The nice part here is that the fixture will automatically switch back to the programmed schedule after two minutes of no activity in the manual mode. That way if you are showing off your awesome aquarium light to your friends; the light will automatically return to regularly scheduled programming if you get distracted.
Since we now have lighting on the tank we started to get some diatom and algae growth.  So far it is minimal but the tank is completely cycled and ready for the first inhabitants.   Therefore, we added our first fish and an assorted cleaner crew into the aquarium over the last week.

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The fish is a Talbot’s damsel which is a uniquely colored damsel came from our good friends at Quality Marine. We have had this little guy for about 10 days now and he is feeding well and enjoying the spacious tank all to himself.

 

 

We added a small crew of clean-up critters as well that included x5 nassarius snails, a couple of cerith snails and about x5 very small blue leg hermit crabs.  I was a little concerned about these guys getting enough food but so far the algae growing combined with some heavy feeding of frozen food is providing sufficient nutrients and no casualties.

My plan for stocking this tank with coral is going to be an LPS dominant type tank.  We have a variety of LPS corals inside our SR-80 tank here at the office that are really starting to get crowded and desperately need more room to grow.  Therefore, I started to slowly transfer a few pieces of coral at a time.  The corals are opening up and appear to be happy in the new home.

For maintenance, we are now performing a weekly water change of about 5 gallons with clean saltwater to maintain the aquarium.  I have added a well-established bag of Seachem Matrix biological filter media to the system as an extra precaution to ensure stability through adding the new livestock.  We also changed out the filter socks for the first time roughly 7 days after adding the first fish into the tank.

Here are the initial water parameters after 7 days of introducing fish and a cleaner crew.

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The next element for us to tackle is water flow, the shape of the this tank can make it a little challenging to get sufficient flow to every corner of the tank.  Thankfully we have a variety of really advanced powerheads that should make the job easier.

I do not want to place powerheads on either of the side viewing pains and will most likely place one on each side of the overflow box on the back wall. Thanks to the awesome pump control options, I should still be able to achieve random flow patterns even with all of the water flow coming from the back wall.

So which powerheads should we choose?  The Tunze Turbelle NanoStream 6055, the Aqua Medic Ecodrift 4.1, Aqamai KPS Wifi Controllable Powerhead, Or the Current USA eFlux powerheads.

 

I chose these options because all of them will nicely mount to the back wall, have a flow rate of 1000 GPH or more, and feature some fancy control options which will help us to create some natural like flow patterns in the tank.

Help us out and let us know which powerheads you think will be a perfect fit for our aquarium.  You can cast your vote by clicking on the pole card in the upper right corner of the video and then stay tuned for our next episode to see the results and watch the new pumps in action.

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