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WAMAS Tank of the Month


Tank Of The Month

November 2006

Chip Frederick (flowerseller)

Way to go flower guy!
Now let's talk reef tanks...

Experience in the Hobby

How old, physicially old is the tank?

The tank itself is... about 10 years old, and a lot of the occupants are still involved in that time frame. I upgraded to another kind of bulb a couple of years ago... and they were XMs, and either I got carried away or I didn't religously aclimate them to the different light and I cooked pieces this big (holds hands >1 ft apart). It's one of those things. Right there is a piece of the Stuber that I wanted to get back because it was my very first piece of SPS. You guys know the name Greg Shimer? I got the piece from him... and I really wanted to get it back. I had given a Doug a piece so I got that back. Then there is this other one over here and it really plates out, tables out really nice, get a real nice purple tip and pinkish at the base. Cooked that, and that literally took up this whole (points to the right hand side of the tank)

How long have you personally been doing reef tanks and fish tanks?

Reef tanks since about 88. We got our rocks from Florida, from Key West and they were actually put on a plane, I used my floral account, flew up to DC... My buddy fished for them in the morning, put them on a plane and I was carying them home that afternoon. And fish only... back in the early 80s, probably more along the lines of '84.

Tank Specifications
210 Gallon Main Tank
Frag Tank
Lighting Main: 3 x 250 W MH with shop ballasts
  XM & AB 10K bulbs
  (2 x 5' 140W URI Super Actinic VHO)
Iwaki 100
1 x 6100 Tunze Stream
1 x 6080 Tunze Stream
3 x Gemini Pumps (~750GPH)
Surge Master controller
DIY down-draf skimmer
DIY kalk reactor
DIY Calcium reactor
40W UV Sterilizer

Who was responsible for getting you into the hobby?

Jack Hobbes

Who is Jack Hobbes?

Jack Hobbes is a buddy of mine, and we were at a party, this is 83, maybe 82, and you know how you get at parties, he had a piranha and he fed it goldfish, and there was this cute little stinkin' goldfish, left in there, he didn't know it was in there... I was like "No, you can't do that"... So I took it. And the next thing you know I had a 55 with a stupid little goldfish in it and it's progressed ever since. He went to salt, I went to salt. He got out of salt, and I... went crazy.

What is your favorite thing about the hobby?

I think my favorite thing about the hobby is... that there is more hobbyists. Because there's a lot of guys, a lot of guys who are getting it at a good level and it's nice to see more people getting involved and really getting involved. I mean you look at the tanks we all go to... there's some pretty awesome tanks. There really is. So that's what I like...

Kinda flip side of that what's your least favorite thing about the hobby?


Was it cheap when you first got into it?

A lot cheaper, but you didn't have the selection of stuff either. When I got in you really couldn't find a shop that sold live rock. And they didn't have wet dry Filters. They weren't being used yet. It was all undergravel. When we did setup our first reef it was a crude version of a wet dry until the mandarin... Do you remember J.C. Burleson? He was the guy that started on the wet drys, but again the mistake is someone showed a picture I saw it...but mine was drip, cause I couldn't do the spray bar thing. And then we went to skimming, I got a Tunze, then these guys brought this down-draft, and the more I looked at it, I had to do one. I mean they really blow water and oxygen together. Look at it... you got a 5 foot white tube. So I like that. I don't have a bad part of the hobby. I can't think of anything I don't like other than really money, but that's not an answer, it's a reality.

About the Tank

What do you do for Maintenance?

Water Changes about 10 gallons a week. I dump 10 gallons into my system goes to the top of my sump and then I come home from church and I drain 10 gallons. I either syphon or whatever. I clean pumps as they need it. I clean the skimmer every couple of weeks, the riser tube.

How often do you test your water?

I test my hardness, that's about the only thing I test regularly. And I test that pretty much once a week. My hardness lately has been running around 9-10 (dKh). And I don't write it down.

1. Leopard Wrasse
2. 4 Royal Grammas
3. 4 Bangai Cardinals
4. Coral Beauty
5. Purple Tang
6. Yellow Tang
7. Scopas Tang
8. Blue Hippo Tang
9. Vlamangi Tang
10. 2 Percula Clowns
11. 2 unknown Damsels
2. Sally Light Foot Crab
3. Huge Derasa Clam
4. 6 different kinds of serpent stars
5. Halloween Hermit (15-17 years old)

What makes your tank special or unique?

All the DIY stuff, and the age of some of the creatures... I have a cup coral that is 15 years old.

About You

What kind of Music are you into right now?

Any kind of rock and roll.

Who would you most like to meet past present or future?

You know what... I have no idea... I can't think of anybody...

The rest of the interview was lost as we were over taken by the need to eat pizza (out of a brick pizza oven that Chip himself fashioned) and drink beer. Overall I was quite taken with the skill and quality of the DIY stuff that Chip has made for his tank, as well as the overall age of the tank and some of the creatures in it (large cup coral, large derasa clam, halloween hermit). There was much more that we could have put in this interview, but I belive we tried to capture the spirit of chips tanks.

Thank you Chip for opening your house and letting us come in and gawk. Love your tank! Thanks for the pizza and beers... and Congratulations on being Tank of The Month for Novemeber 2006.