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WAMAS Tank of the Month

Dan Lichens (Dandy7200)

Congratulations to you Dan, on being selected tank of the month (Again!).

About the Tank

Experience in hobby

  • Longhorn Cowfish
  • Joculator Angel Pair
  • Bicinctus Clown Pair
  • Snowflake Eel
  • Copperband Butterfly
  • Yellow Blotch Rabbitfish
  • Radiant Wrasse
  • Leopord Wrasse
  • Splendid Dottyback
  • Algae Blenny
  • Longspine Cardinalfish
  • Lyretail Anthias

How long have you been doing this?

Since 2002. I was given a 10g freshwater setup when a friend of mine moved and that lasted about 2 months. I bought a 29g and set it up as a FOWLR. Quite a few tanks later I convinced my wife to let me put this current tank together.

Who in the hobby most influences you?

It's not specific people, it is communities of enthusiast that really influence me these days. I am consistently amazed by the wealth of information available on the net. With the abundance of reefkeepers sharing information freely, problems are solved and advances in the hobby are made more quickly than ever before.

Tank setup and equipment

The tank is a 108x30x27 Starfire display made by Miracles in Glass, roughly 380 gallons. There are two external overflow boxes that lead to the 250 gallon fiberglass sump.

What is your maintenance schedule like?

Change 100g water every other month. Add kalk to reactor weekly. Test parameters monthly. Change carbon monthly. Change Po4 media quarterly.

How much time do you spend weekly?

Maybe an hour or so.

  • Montiporas are my favorite corals.

Where do you keep your water parameters?

Alk 10dkh Ca 400 Mg 1400 Sal 1.026

What brand salt do you use?

Instant Ocean

What do you feed your fish and or corals?

Phosphate free table shrimp is the staple food and a little Omega One flake.

How do you maintain calcium/alkalinity?

2 part and kalk for alk and ca. Mg I dose about a gallon of Kent Tech Mg/month.

What type of lighting do you have and what schedule do you have them on?

4 ea 400w Radiums on E ballast. 8ea VHO Super Actinics on Icecap 660's

What schedule do you have the lights on?

8 hrs for MH and 12 hrs for actinics

What kind of water flow do you have? How do you accomplish it?

Hammerhead return to 4ea SeaSwirls. 2ea Tunze 6205's and 1 Vortech mp40 with 2 battery backups.

What are your future plans for improvement/upgrade of the tank?

My wife would kill me.

  • A few hundred misc snails and hermits

What makes your setup special or unique?

Probably the most unique thing is that my sump is outside. Originally I was going to build and addition on the side of the house for an 8'x16' mini greenhouse room for this area. After the tank was ordered we found out that we had a baby on the way so the plan was scaled back to a rubber made shed I have several automated systems in place to control temperature but it's really nothing to fancy. Over all I am very happy with just the sump in a shed approach and have not had any issues with it at all.

If you had to start from scratch, would you do anything different?

The only thing I would change is I would have overflows at the ends of the tank rather than the back. The external overflows on the back have black acrylic inserts and the tank back is black vinyl. You can see the black silicone holding the overflows on the tank and it looks really strange. I just keep the back covered in coraline but I really prefer the clean look of a well scraped black back glass to make the corals stand out.

Do you have any advice for those folks whom are new to the hobby.

Relax and enjoy the tank as much as you can. When things go wrong, don't panic, ask for help. Always be open to new ideas or advancements in the hobby but be sure you double or triple check the claims are valid. There is as much misinformation online as there is correct information.


What are your other hobbies?

Building things.

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

Howard Hughes

Why did you choose the screen name you did?

It was originally dan-diy on RC many years ago. I lost my login info and created a new account and this seemed close enough.

What is the last book you read?

Delights And Prejudices by James Beard

Scotch or burbon?

Quad Espresso

Things I wish I knew 6 years ago:

To many to list.