Another Swiss One (1900 liters or so)

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    So, after starting to think about upgrading my reef tank back in 2017, I’m finally at the stage where things are moving forward.

    I’m currently running a 250 liter reef that has been up since 2010. It took me several years to even begin to be able to keep SPS corals alive in this tank until eventually I managed to not kill every frag I put in.

    The current tank is a 100cm x 50cm x 50cm tank with a tiny sump (a Tunze compact) underneath with a Tunze over the edge siphon overflow. Started with a T5 fixture with 4 T5s left over from a planted tank, then moved to the first Orphek LED, then to a generic Chinese made LED and now running Hydra HD 52s. Using Balling Lite to add Calcium and Carbonate and a Tunze ATO.

    Here is a pic of the tank taken in January:

    FTS 13012019.JPEG

    and the place where the tank is situated (living and dining room) and where the new build will be:

    FTS on wall 13012019.JPEG

    The new tank is going to be 300cm x 70cm x 90cm or so. Display will be about 1,500 liters and the sump system will add another 400 liters.

    In my research I visited several large reef tanks here in Switzerland to learn as much as possible about what it takes to install one and more importantly, the best way to set it up so that maintenance is as convenient as possible.

    One of the tanks I visited and whose owner has been extremely helpful with advice (and hopefully will continue to be as I plunge into this adventure!) is Ridgeway’s SWUBE. If you haven’t had the chance, check out his build thread here. He has an amazing tank, even more so when seen live!

    I decided to start this build thread in order to get ideas/inputs/advice from forum members as this project comes together. As you will see, not every detail is fixed yet so that I can include inputs (and remove stupid ideas) in the plans…



    At one point there was the option of building a fish room on the other side of the wall where the tank will be and having the new tank flush with the wall. But this option turned out to be inconvenient and difficult to implement due to the space available outside the wall and zoning issues etc.

    So everything supporting the tank will be in the stand, including a frag tank (probably part of the sump) and a fresh SW mixing station for automatic water changes.

    The original idea was a tank of 250cm x 80cm x 90cm (length x width front to back x height) and looked like this:

    Tank and Stand 3D in room 250.png

    With this design the plan was to have a coast to coast overflow running the length of the back of the tank:

    Reef Tank Overall 250.png

    The overflow weir would have been 10cm wide so the total width from the wall would have been 90cm. After laying out the dimensions on the floor and lots of discussions with my wife, we decided that the whole think would be too wide and too disproportionate for the room, sticking out into the room too much.


    Tank and Stand full length 75 wide 3D in room.png

    And in order to have the tank as wide as possible, the overflow has moved to one end:

    tank 90cm high.png

    I wanted to avoid having an overflow on one end of a long tank as I’m worried about scum building up on the surface at the end opposite the overflow. Perhaps a Gyre at the far end to push surface water towards the overflow?

    I’m also not sure that 17cm is deep enough for the weir. The overflow will be a Bean Animal design with three pipes of 40mm dimensions. I will have two 32mm returns, each on a Red Dragon 8m3 DC pump, returning water at each end of the tank.


    Here is an initial list of equipment for the tank:

    – Bubble King® Supermarin 250 + RD3 Speedy 60W skimmer
    – 2x Red Dragon 8m3 DC pumps for returns (planning about 4x turnover for sump)
    – 1x Red Dragon AC pump for running reactors etc (Currently using this as my return pump)
    – 8x Hydra HD 52s in 4x Geisemann STELLAR units each with 4x 24w T5s (waiting for a quote from Geisemann to have the T5s dimmable and connected to the Profilux)
    – RE media reactors
    – Fuge light: not yet chosen.
    – Frag tank light: not yet chosen.
    – Tunze Osmolator ATO
    – Either Tunze Streams or Panta Rhei Hydro Wizards (plus maybe a Gyre) for in tank current. I want alot of current, 60x to 100x max turnover.
    – Spectrapure Litermeter 3 setup for the auto water changes (I initially thought of the GHL Maxi doser but it is very noisy)
    – RO/DI 75GPD unit with two DI cannisters which I’m currently using. Will add a booster pump to it.
    – Two fan extractors to pull humid air outside from above the tank
    – 2x Shego heaters
    – Either a Clarisea rollermat or more likely the new Royal Exclusive standalone rollermat (can handle more flow)
    – All controlled by a GHL Profilux 4 controller with two 2.1 4x dosing units and a KH Director, leak sensors, air humidity/temp sensor (for the fan extractors), flow meter, multiple Powerbars etc.

    I know that some/much of the above can be replaced with less costly equipment. However, one of the main criteria for this build is that the tank is superquiet as all the equipment will be sitting in our living room. I haven’t heard anything quieter than Royal Exclusive/Tunze/Panta Rhei equipment so (still not sure about a Gyre due to noise issues but apparently the newest Gyre is quiet?)…


    Electrics… Got together with my friendly electrician and his initial idea for the plug panel was thus:

    Plug panel drawing.jpeg

    Nine plugs per panel, two panels. Each plug with its own on/off switch so I can turn off equipment without unplugging it.

    A dedicated circuit for the tank.


    So, new position in fuse box in the basement:

    Tank Fuse.jpeg

    (“rez” is short for Rez-de-chaussée or ground floor) 🙂


    A hole in the outside wall in the basement required to take the wire outside…


    Under terrace tiles to the outside corner of the living room (at far end)…


    Looking like a very nice build, I like the attention to detail, that equipment list though :dribble:

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