Show Off Custom 180G Cantilevered Reef System

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Robert Tran

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This build took about 2.5 years to complete. This is primarily due to Pandemic and the natural complexity of the design.

The main tank is located upstairs on the first floor. The tank sits on a custom engineered cantilevered steel shelf supported by two vertical steel beams. Th shelf is then welded to the two beams with a slight angular offset to compensate for the anticipated deflection with a full load. The calculated deflection came out to about 1/4”. The leveling came out perfectly when the tank was filled.

The wall thickness behind the tank is 6” and is actually a pantry. So, I was able to mount the tank flush to the wall with all the plumbing hidden behind it. On that backside I also provided the access points for the water changing valves. In addition, the entire pantry panel that is directly behind the tank can be removed just in case I need to do anything major in the back of the tank or if the plumbing leaks.

The filtration system is directly downstairs, located in a mechanical room so all the plumbings from the tank to the sump is hidden inside the wall. Routing 7 PVC pipes between 2x6 beams was quite difficult to achieve but the result was quite worth it.

Here’s some additional details:

- Mfg - Crystal Dynamic
- Dimension: 72x24x24 Rimless
- 3/4" laminated Sentryglas-interlayer glass
- Reinforced bottom with perimeter brace
- Reinforced vertical seams
- Custom Modular Marine overflow
- Low iron glass
- 1” SCH 80 drain bulkhead
- 3/4" SCH 80 return bulkheads
- Starboard bottom

Filtration and other supporting equipment:
- Custom 72x24x20 sump
- Royal Exclusiv automatic roller fleece
- 80W UV Sterilizer
- DaStaco A2 Extreme Calcium reactor
- Reef Octopus 300INT skimmer
- Reef Octopus GFO/Bio Pellet reactor
- Tubular steel cantilevered support
- 1500W Titanium heater
- Abyzz A400 return pump
- Abyzz A400 transfer (water change) pump
- Ecotech circulation pumps
- IM 50EXT Frag tank (plumbed to main system)
- IM 50INT QT tank (stand-alone)
- APEX control systems w/ 5x EB832
- Kessil A500 lighting system
- 2x 165G reservoirs water change systems
- 1.5HP 220V commercial chiller (Apex controlled as well)

Finally, the system is also stubbed out for future daisy chaining of another tank that will be about 120”x36”x30” located on the same floor but about 75ft away.

Other than the general construction stuff, all work were done by me.
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