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Monday, November 12, 2007

All Systems Go!!!

It has been a long, hard couple of weeks.  But, I am proud to announce that at 6:52pm on Monday, November 12, 2007, the system officially went online! 

The main plumbing system (minus the refugium) has been running for about 30 minutes now.  Let me describe what has happened over the last couple of weeks.

Plumbers are hard to come by.  Could not get anyone to show up for 2 weeks.  So, I decided to do it myself. 

A friend of a friend is an apprentice and he helped me get the RO/DI unit up and running on November 3.  So, at least I was making water.

Took my two tanks to Eagle Glass to be drilled and to have baffles made.  Don't ever ever use them.  They took forever.  Almost three weeks to cut 3 holes and they kept promising me tomorrow for days.  As it is, they never made the baffles.  So, here's some advice. If you ever need glass or acrylic cut, go to Lowes.  They have everything and will cut it for you while you wait.  No charge!

I spent the better part of November 3/4 trying to do the plumbing.  It was very difficult and by late Sunday night (November 4), I had the plumbing through the walls and hooked up tot he tank, but nothing at the back end inn the basement.

Picked up the tanks on Thursday, and (as mentioned above) Lowes cut my baffles on Saturday.

This past Saturday (November 10) I finished off the plumbing and began to try to test for leaks.  In the process, I cracked the glass on the refugium.  So, I am down a tank right now and another is on order.

I had a minor leak at the drain of the sump, but I managed to fix that with some silicone.

Powered on the pump and had lots of problems!!!  Turns out I had plumbed the drain to the return and vice versa!!!  Ugh!!!

Luckily, I had installed unions in the basement and was able to simply switch them (after getting soaked).

But, I had a new problem.  The drain side under the tank was leaking badly.  Sunday night and I am off to Pickering Valley Farm and Feed to buy new hoses.  Last night I hooked up all of the new flexible plumbing to the tank, sealed it with silicone and put on clamps. 

Tonight, my dad came over and we fired it up and balanced the system for drain/return. 

It's alive!!!

The protein skimmer is on and in the breaking-in state.  The flow is really nice in the aquarium and lots of detritus is being moved around.  I am just hoping it makes it to the basement to get cleaned out...

I will let this run unchanged until I return from work on Thursday night and then begin the process of checking all my levels and hopefully move some of my coral in this weekend!!!

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