I tried my first sps coral with trepidation because he knew they were more challenging and higher maintenance. After adding some SPS, I began regularly testing my water and started topping off with kalkwassar. I became hooked on SPS and started planning an upgrade. I wanted one of "those" tanks you see online that are filled up with beautiful large brilliantly colored colonies. I started searching forums for used equipment sales and collecting the needed equipment for an upgrade which he financed by selling his soft corals. His current tank has been setup since January of 2008.
150-gallon, 72"x 24"x 20" starphire glass tank by Great Lakes Aquariums. My's tank has a middle 1.5" overflow that runs through a filter sock at the sump. Water is returned from the 100 gallon Rubbermaid sump by a Gen-X pcx 40 pump through two penductors on loc-line. In tank flow is supplied by two Vortech mp40's. The sand bed is 2-inches of carib sea special grade sand. I run a MSX 250 skimmer, GEO 418 calcium reactor, Tunze osmolator top off, and carbon through a Two Little Fishes reactor and GFO through another. Lighting consists of three DE 250 watt Phoenix bulbs in Lumen Max reflectors driven by blue wave HQI ballasts. I also use two 60" VHO super actinic bulbs for actinic supplementation.
All water for top off and water changes is treated using a five-chamber Filter Guys RO/DI filter that gets new DI resin if TDS is above 6 ppm. Water changes are performed every 3-4 weeks of 25 gallons (10%) using reef crystals. Carbon is changed every water change and GFO is changed every three months. I run a bacteria driven system using Microbacter7 using four caps full once a week and 2.5 ml's of vodka/vinegar mix daily. I also add Lugols iodine 3 drops daily. I add Seachem Reef Plus to the fish food which has amino acids, vitamin c and various other additives for fish and corals.
Temp 78-80 degrees
Specific gravity 1.026
Calcium 430 ppm
alkalinity 8 dkH
Magnesium 1400 ppm