Habitat - Indoor :: Moe's new 75G home - build thread.

Turtle tank setups and other indoor configurations.

Post Posted: Tue Mar 14, 2017 10:49 am   Re: Moe's new 75G home - build thread.

For the drain, I used a small eheim 1046 hobby pump and ran that to a drain adapter fitted with a 1/4" quick connect.
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On the drain side I used a standard drain adapter made for hooking up a dishwasher, a standard dishwasher compression adapter and I jammed a watts 1/4" quick connect adapter in one end. I sealed the watts adapter threads with silicone just to make sure the compression clamp would get a tight seal. So far so good, no leaks.
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The tank side of the wall had a coax drop and a wall plate. There was a mud ring but no box on the tank side so it was a straight easy shot to the drywall on the laundry room side. The tank side is painted so I just loosened the wall plate and didn't have to make a hole on that side. On the laundry room side of the wall, I drilled a small hole just big enough for the two 1/4" tubes to pass through.
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I thought the wife was going to be mad but I stuck the laundry cart in front of those tubes. We'll differ her anger to a later point in time.
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Post Posted: Tue Mar 14, 2017 11:10 am   Re: Moe's new 75G home - build thread.

I added an eheim feeder for his Mazuri pellets. It's zip tied to the tank brace.
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Here's the entire sump:
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I added some black gravel and plants to the sump. I originally wanted to add them to the display tank but :mrgreen: wouldn't allow that. He pulled them all up except for the bit of tall grass. I picked a mix of things that do well in lower light, things that consume a lot of nutrients from the water (hence they are part of the filtration) and a couple of plants that could be trimmed and served as turtle food when they grow like anacharis.

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I'm currently waiting on a Finnex Planted+ cliplight for the fuge to be delivered. It was supposed to be here yesterday but Amazon had one of their rare "we're sorry your package is late" notes on my shipping.

That's the current state of Moe's tank. I'll probably add a small wireless bridge and the RKL net module back to the setup shortly.
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Post Posted: Tue Mar 14, 2017 7:24 pm   Re: Moe's new 75G home - build thread.

Finnex light showed up this morning. :)

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I like this light. It's very bright, the spectrum is designed for planted tanks, it has a good clip and a nice adjustable gooseneck. Well done Finnex!

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So far so good...
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Post Posted: Tue Mar 14, 2017 8:19 pm   Re: Moe's new 75G home - build thread.

Here are the boys with Moe.

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Derek (right) the little boy in the basket on the first page of this thread is now 6 is finishing kindergarten and about to go into 1st grade this year. Gees time flies
Brandon (left) was born mid way through this thread. He's finishing up his second year of preschool and about to go into kindergarten.


Moe is bigger older and still likes to bask. He LOVES the Mega-Ray MVBs. I switched from PowerSun to Mega Ray a while ago... so very glad I did. He's going through a massive scute shed right now. The plexiglass window is dirty and you can see the reflection from some of the packages and things I was using to rebuild the tank in the reflection. DOH!

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This thread just hit 33,000 views. :D
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Post Posted: Tue Mar 14, 2017 10:40 pm   Re: Moe's new 75G home - build thread.

Do you need separate controllers? For instance, the heater has its own and another for the solenoid. Is the drain pump automated... so it will do a partial change/fill by itself?

Sorry about the pics! From what I understand, the thumbnails are stripped of metadata and that includes orientation info from mobile devices.

Great picture with the boys. Even Moe is posing :)
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Post Posted: Wed Mar 15, 2017 3:16 pm   Re: Moe's new 75G home - build thread.

Steve, you've known me for how long now? I'm a little disappointed by your question... IF there was a cheaper easier way to do this with separate controls OR a way that was all-in-one for 4x the cost, by now you should know I'm going to pick the 4x the cost version. :P This entire thread is 22 pages of the most ridiculous way to do anything LOL.

About the controller.
It's from Digital Aquatics and is their entry level model called the Reef Keeper Lite (RKL). They also have a Reef Keeper Elite that does MORE (not needed for turtle) AND a newer version on an open source platform. Neptune Systems is a competitive brand that makes the Apex line of controllers. They are supposedly better than the Digital Aquatics brand but cost more. The Digital Aquatics stuff can be a little quirky but once it's setup correctly it seems to run and run forever. I've been happy with Digital Aquatics to date.

Here's how the system works. There's a single controller brain to which you can hook up various modules via a daisy chain telephone style bus cable. In my system I have 1 controller brain, 2 x PC4 (4 port power strips), 1 x SL1 (sensor module), and 1x Net module (network interface) connected in that order. The controller brain MUST be plugged into a PC4 to get power via the bus. Beyond that the order of the modules in the chain doesn't matter. The limit of the RKL is 4 modules. The Elite version supports up to 63 modules :shock: . I guess maybe if you run a zoo or a public aquarium ???

Controller -- PC4 -- PC4 -- SL1 -- NET is my controller chain.

PC4
Port1 - Eheim 1262 Return Pump
Port2 - Finnex Heater
Port3 - MegaRay MVB
Port4 - ATO Solenoid Valve

PC4
Port1 - Eheim 1046 Drain Pump
Port2 - Finnex Planted+ Fuge Light
Port3 - Ubiquiti AirGateway (wireless bridge for NET module)
Port4 - empty

SL1
Temperature Probe
PH Probe
Digital Aquatics Float Switch

Net
Connects to home network


Yes everything is on one controller:
  • The temperature sensor in the overflow will tell the controller when to turn on/off the outlet with the heater in the sump.
  • The Lights are on independent timer schedules.
  • The float switch tells the controller when to power on/off the solenoid valve for top off.
  • The return pump is always on 24/7
  • The PH Probe is informative and not part of any automation at this time. I already had this probe so I figured why not just plop it in the system.
  • The small eheim pump connected to the drain is on a schedule. Every night it runs for 20 minutes which equates to ~2 gallons of water removed from the system. When the water is removed the float switch drops and the controller is told to add new clean top off water. Hence auto water changes. The total system volume is 75Gal in the main tank and roughly 30 gallons in the sump or 105G system volume. I do 14 gallons of water change weekly so what... 13% weekly water change.


No worries about the pics. Yes that explains what's going on. They are all rotated weird in the preview but if you click on one to enlarge it they are correct. Sorry couldn't resist the obligatory family photo since both boys and Moe have been a part of this thread.
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Post Posted: Wed Mar 15, 2017 3:46 pm   Re: Moe's new 75G home - build thread.

Good to see you back ! Looked over all 22 pages... and for a new member that wants to go HI Tec you are the guy , think it's great. As far as me...I cant set my VCR , yes still have one. Hell I'm old ! Guess that's why I keep it simple and as natural as I can.
Wish Heather a great day !
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Post Posted: Wed Mar 15, 2017 3:53 pm   Re: Moe's new 75G home - build thread.

There's people building their own arduino controllers and DIY everything down to the tank. I'm far from those super propeller heads and have definitely switched from DIY to what can Amazon Prime bring me.

Instead of thinking of me as Hi Tech... let's go with VERY LAZY. :) If you want to know what the absolute laziest option is... THAT I can help deliver.

Thanks Litefoot!
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Post Posted: Wed Mar 15, 2017 3:56 pm   Re: Moe's new 75G home - build thread.

Ha Ha ! Thanks' for Amazon... me to !
Difference you are sharing it they are NOT and or won't! Must be top secret to them?
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Post Posted: Wed Mar 15, 2017 6:35 pm   Re: Moe's new 75G home - build thread.

Oh yeah not on this forum. If you want to find the uber aquarium nerds you need to look deep into the reef forums.
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Post Posted: Thu Mar 16, 2017 7:26 am   Re: Moe's new 75G home - build thread.

That's why I'm here , this forum is great. Good people! Doing this since 1961 but the old fashion way. Had a reef tank years ago but today with age and health it's just Piggley and me now. He's great ! Always a good read on reef forums yes and your 22 pages too but I will let that up to the younger guy's. The years of experience here being posted will and can help the new members.
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Post Posted: Sat Mar 18, 2017 9:31 pm   Re: Moe's new 75G home - build thread.

These magnet things are great. I've stopped using the suction cups to hold things because they eventually get hard and stop working. Both the temp probe in the overflow and the PH probe in the fuge are being held by the ZooMed magnets. You get various sized plastic clips that screw into a magnet base in each package.

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The other problem I had was the NET module is wired only. I had no easy way to run ethernet cable to where the tank is. I settled on this Ubiquiti AirGateway Pro device as a wireless bridge. FWIW Ubiquiti makes fantastic routers / switches / APs. Our entire house is Ubiquiti Unifi. Not that anyone would come to a turtle forum and specifically this thread for networking suggestions but if by chance you are... Ubiquiti Unifi. End of your search.

The AirGateway is not part of the Unifi line and can't be managed by the cloud key controller but for the price, the size and the features ... it's hard to beat for this application.

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This little guy is PoE capable but I'm using this thing as a wireless bridge (which Ubiquiti calls station mode) because I can't run an ethernet cable to this location. You have the option of adding a Ubiquiti PoE injector - they snap together which is really sweet. I had a few PoE injectors that came with my AP's ... so problem solved. Here they are snapped together.

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Next step was to follow some internet directions on converting this guy into bridge mode. It's a tiny CPE AP/Gateway by default. Plug in to AC power & plug an ethernet cable directly into a laptop. Configuration took ~5 minutes and was straight forward. No issues other than finding the location of the latest firmware update file on Ubiquiti's site. Add another 5 minutes for a firmware upgrade. 10 minute total job.

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Post Posted: Sat Mar 18, 2017 9:45 pm   Re: Moe's new 75G home - build thread.

And once again from a web browser I can hit the NET module for reporting, config changes, status, and get alerts. Necessary - NO. Convenient - YES. I don't have to mess around with all of the nested menus and weird interface on the controller. I don't have to crawl into the sump to plug in a USB cable to the bus and connect a laptop. Just open a web browser and poof... full access. ;-)

I have a temp probe on the SL1. The iTemp probe is the same probe but plugs into the bus. It's showing "error" because I don't have that style temp probe present. I don't own an ORP probe. Instead of showing "error" or better yet "N/A" it shows some bogus number. Part of the DigitalAquatics quirkiness.

DA_Net1.jpeg


You do get full control of the automation programming same as you would if you used MyReef with the SID (USB connection) or the physical controller. You can't name ports from the physical controller. That's only available via MyReef or the NET interface.

Here's the heater power port for example...

DA_Net2.jpeg
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