Technical Setup



I use this page to explain the setup and equipment used. Might do some reviews on suitability of some of the equipment at a later stage. For more info on plans and the construction of it checkout The Build page


Display Aquarium: 800x500x500mm (custom made with 6mm Optiwhite Sides and Front, 10mm base) theoretical volume 200litres


Sump: 620x420x450mm (6mm glass, selfmade) Consiting of 4 Chambers. Chamber 1 Return, Chamber 2 Skimmer, Chamber 3 Live Rock, Oyster, Mussels, Clam, Goose Barnacles, Chamber 4 Return to DT)


Overflow: DIY Internal Overflow box, 620x90x90mm, Its using a linear overflow (no weirs) to maximise the draw of only the very top layer of water. A stainless steel mesh on the inside of it ensures that no critters, snails and bigger chunks reach the drain pipes. I use a “safe and silent” overflow system also known as the BeanAnimal (click here for more details). Basically the main thing about it is its silent (no bubbling/gurgling) and its safe in case one of the pipes gets clocked for whatever reason you dont end up with a flood.

(Note:03/11/14: Box installed too high, water level too high and bracing is in water, grid stainless steel starting to corrode and mesh size of 2mm too narrow)


Return Pump: Tunze Silence (max flow 2400lph, at 1.6m height only about 800lph)

(Note 03/11/14: Running perfect, not touched for a year, very quiet)


Powerheads: Tunze 6095 Wide flow (2000lph – 9500lph) and Tunze 6055 (1000lph – 5500lph). The Tunzes are controlled with the 7096 Pump controller that can be programmed using a computer and has a moonlight too. (Very nifty!)

(Note 03/11/14: Running perfect, cleaned a few times, near silent, on the strong side for the size of tank, Controller is very good for the price but desperately needs an update, would be great to incorporate the mooncycle that it has already into pump power settings to simulate the changing tides magnitudes)


Skimmer: Boyu DT-1516, in sump, 1400lhr flow

(Note 03/11/14: Brilliant kit, only downturn is that its a bit noisy, custom silencer made that a lot better)


Lighting: 2x12W TMC GroBeam Ultima 600 and 1x30W TMC GroBeam Tile 1500ND. Both are Natural Daylight spectrum at 6500k. Controlled by Aquaray Multicontroller to allow smooth dimming in and out. Also here to say is that the 7096 Pump controller has a Moonlight on it that simulates an actual moon cycle which I find very cool!

(Note 03/11/14: Very happy with performance, Green and brown algea growing very well, colder light needed for red algea, Controller very good too, only thing to mention is that light start to hum a bit at a high pitch during dimmed times)


Chiller: D-D, DC750, 750 Watt


Cabinet Stand: DIY selfmade mainly out of 2″x4″ Timber, 1″ Plyboard and 18mm Styrofoam on top. (see plans here The Build)


Cabinet Hood: DIY all from planed timber  (see plans here The Build)

5 thoughts on “Technical Setup

  1. Pingback: Happy Birthday Aquarium :-) | Irish Rockpool Aquarium Adventures

  2. i have just started a native setup I don’t have a chiller just yet and my tank is sitting at 18c will rockpool species still live ok at these temps? I’m sticking with wilks and starfish and common blenny at min but would love any advice possible as your tank is the bomb

    • Hi Robert, Congrats on starting a native setup and welcome to the club. Most species you find in rockpools should be okay. Checkout this very helpful posts from An Bollenessor (link1, link2). It would be a bit of a shock if you collect them now though as its currently around 10 degrees in the water. I have had gobies and corkwing wrasse in up to 20 degrees for a good while and they seemed fine. However that was collected and introduced to warmer water in the summer, not sure if they would make the acclimatization as well now in the winter. Definitely give them a few hours to adjust to the temperature as it is an extreme difference.
      Generally pure Rockpool species are extremely hardy. I would say go for small gobies and a small corkwing to start with. Good Luck and all the best!

  3. Marius i have tried native a few times and did not have a cooler.i keeped all the things i caught in my sand-eel net and returned them when i got new ones I had a lobster for 6 mount’s.

    • Hi Dave, Great stuff. Most species caught on the shore dont really need the chiller but depends where you have the tank as well. The chiller is more needed and nearly a must for keeping macroalgea look good. Otherwise they get “consumed” by microalgea. Amazing what can end up in a sandeel net 😉 wonder what happened to the lobster? you got hungry 😉 lol

      Hope to meet you at one of the IKA meets next year
      All the best

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