+
melev's picture

Necessary maintenance - biopellets update

In March 2016, I filled up my biopellet reactor with Biospheres. I used 1000ml worth, or one large pouch. At the time my nitrate was quite high, but within about eight weeks it had dropped them to less than 5ppm. I talked about this entire process in a video I released four months ago: http://youtu.be/aRHf8b1H5u4

melev's picture

Skimmer Swabbie operational once more

Some time in early 2016, maybe March or April, the Swabbie motor stopped rotating. I ordered a new motor from Avast Marine, and it arrived within a few days. I never tackled that repair primarily because there's no space in the ABS section and I thought my tank sitter Bobby could do it more easily than I could. He loves this stuff, fixing broken things.  

melev's picture

2017 brings a huge update

It's 2017, central time. So let me tell you about what's to come (although I know you can't read this for a few more... months) but it's here for historical reasons because I know you like to go back and see what you missed):

melev's picture

One big sump worth blogging about

A few months ago, I was hired to build a big custom sump for a 400g system in Wylie, Texas. It's an all-in-one sump that is nearly 8' long, and needed to be built with 3/8" cast acrylic to be strong enough for longterm use.  For me, a minimum of five years is my goal, but the owner was thinking 15-20 years. 

melev's picture

What's in the box? A brand new work surface!

I ran up to Home Depot today to get some new router bits, and as I was walking down the main aisle I spotted this awesome adjustable-height workbench.  The table's surface is completely smooth, unlike many I've inspected.  I need one that is 100% flat for my acrylic work, and the fact that this one could be raised up nice and high was even better. 

melev's picture

Gotta love a good power bill

In early 2016, it was time to renew my annual contract with the electric company. We have deregulation in Texas, so while everyone gets power from Oncor, we can pick which company sends us the bill each month. Strange I know, but for the past few years I've been skipping from one name to the next to always get the best deal I can.  So far, it's worked out without a hitch. If there is a power problem, you call to report it to Oncor, and they fix it.  The billing company just bills you for what you use, and doesn't provide any other service.

melev's picture

A new refugium bulb?

During a recent trip to Home Depot, I looked through the LED bulbs seeking a new refugium bulb to use on the frag system's fuge. I found this one rated 5000 Kelvin, and the shape of the bulb looks promising. The bulb cost $14 and uses 8 watts. 

melev's picture

When I was a boy

I had a 20g Long as my first aquarium when I was 11 years old.  Back then, the rule was 1" of fish per gallon, and I didn't like that rule.  So instead of worrying about any fish, I decided to make it an invertebrate tank. There was no limit to how many you could add, which was awesome.  I remember getting:

melev's picture

Mandarin art

Just in time for the holidays, I received my mandarin ornament to hang on the Christmas tree. For now, it's here on my desk but next week when the tree goes up, this little guy will be adding some flair to the menagerie of items I've been collecting.  

melev's picture

A custom fan tray

While every fan tray I build is custom made to fit a particular sump, this one took more time and a little imagination to fit one customer's needs. This bracket will fit on a rimless sump, nestling down on the front wall and the inner partitian and stay there. I added a front and back piece to hug the spot so it won't be going anywhere accidentally.

It holds two 120mm fans, and is made of 1/4" clear acrylic. It actually took more time than it should have, but that's the nature of creativity versus a cookie-cutter product. I kinda like it. :)