About Me

About Me

My name is Richard and I have been an avid aquarist for over 30 years. My journey began, like many others, with the introduction of two goldfish and a small aquarium. I was hooked!

Over the first 15 years, I kept everything from Koi Ponds, Turtles, Tropical Freshwater, Tropical Planted and eventually found my life in a position where I could dedicate the time and resources to move into a Saltwater Aquarium.

I have spent time working as an Aquarium Maintenence Technician for Aquatic Escapes in Vancouver, Canada. Installing, maintaining and troubleshooting aquariums of all sizes and types. This part of my career gave me a great insight into what works and what doesn’t with saltwater systems and how a few simple tweaks can make a huge difference.

My interest in electronics also gave me an opportunity to design and build an aquarium controller. This was at the time when aquarium controllers were in their infancy within the hobby and I wanted to automate as much as I could with my reef.

You can find me on the following Awesome Saltwater Forums:

Reef Central = Vancouver Reefr
Nano-Reef = Vancouver Reefer
CanReef = Vancouver Reefer

My aim with this site is to pass on as much information in an easy to find, easy to understand way so that I can hopefully make your entry to the world of saltwater aquariums as smooth as possible.

To help you even further please be sure to subscribe to our Social Media Channels:

Facebook Page
Facebook Group
YouTube Channel
Instagram Feed
Pinterest Boards

Thanks,

Richard Signature

My Reef

My Reef Aquarium – Day 1
My Reef Aquarium
My Reef Aquarium at 2 years- Always Growing!
My Reef Aquarium Today – Still Growing!
If you look close you can see my Bubble Algae Problem at 18 months old- FoxFace Rabbitfish Cured That!

Behind The Scenes

I’m So Lucky To Have Room Directly Under My Aquarium!
My Remote Sump Installation
My Inline Frag Tank & QT Tank

DIY Aquarium Controller

My DIY Aquarium Controller – Aquatroller
My Remote Head For Aquarium Stand
My Energy Bar – I Swear Neptune Systems Ripped This Off Me!

Aquatroller Features:

  • Heater Control
  • Chiller Control
  • Ph Reading
  • Temperature Reading of Tank, Sump, QT & Ambient
  • Flood Detection
  • 4 Head Dosing Pumps
  • Alarms for all Parameters
  • Web-Based Interface
  • Text & Email Alerts

  • LED Control With Sunrise/Sunset
  • Moon Mode
  • Fuge Light Control
  • QT Light Control
  • Frag Tank Light Control
  • Automatic Top Off
  • Automatic Salt Mix
  • Automatic Water Change
  • Return Pump Control
  • Skimmer Full Sensor & Drain Control

To find out more information on my Aquatroller I have a VERY OLD website documenting the build of this. Some photo links are missing and I will update it one day! At this time my focus is TheBeginnersReef.com but if you wish to view it you can CLICK HERE

Full System Stats

Equipment:

EQUIPMENT BRAND & MODEL
Aquarium75 Gallon Aqueon 48″ x 18″ x 21″
Drilled with Custom Overflow
StandBlack Aqueon to Match Aquarium
Customised Shelving
CanopyDIY to be LowPprofile, Houses
LED Array and Cooling Fans
SumpMarineland 20 Gallon Long
Drilled, DIY Bubble Trap, Refugium, Dry Rock Rubble
Frag TankMarineland 10 Gallon
Modified to 8″ Tall
QT TankMarineland 10 Gallon – Offline ready to go – Aquaclear 20 Filter
Display Tank LightingDIY 3W LED Array with 2x ATI T5 Coral+ & 2x ATI T5 Blue+
Linked into Aquatroller
Frag Tank LightingPAR 38 LED Fixture
Linked to Aquatroller
Refugium LightingPlant Grow+ LED Fixture
Linked to Aquatroller
Protein SkimmerReef Octopus NWB150
Linked to Aquatroller
Heaters2x Eheim Jager 200W
Linked to Aquatroller
ChillerAqua Euro 1/10HP
Linked to Aquatroller
Return PumpReeflo Dart
Linked to Aquatroller
Wave Makers2x Tunze Turbelle Stream 6105 – Display Tank
1x Tunze Nano Stream 6040 – Frag Tank
ReactorsTwo Little Fishes Kalk Reactor modified to run Biopellets
Bulk Reef Supply Twin Reactor running Carbon
RO/DI FilterBulk Reef Supply 3 Stage 75 GPD with TDS Meter, 5 Micron Sediment, 10 Micron Carbon, RO Membrane & DI Resin.
Custom Shut off linked to Aquatroller
Auto Top-OffDIY
Linked to Aquatroller
Auto Water ChangerDIY
Linked to Aquatroller
Auto Salt MixerDIY
Linked to Aquatroller
Dosing Pumps4x DIY 22ml/min
Linked to Aquatroller
Aquarium ControllerDIY Aquatroller

Consumables:

CONSUMABLEBRAND & PRODUCT
SaltInstant Ocean Reef Crystals
Calcium SupplementReef Crest Calcium Mix Part A
Alkalinity SupplementReef Crest Alkalinity Mix Part B
Magnesium SupplementReef Crest Magnesium Mix Part C
Mechanical FiltrationFilter Floss in Bubble Trap & Filter Socks on Main Display Drain
BiopelletsVertex Biopellet
CarbonPremium Activated Carbon
FoodsNori – Grocery Store
New Life Spectrum – Small Pellets
Omega One Marine Flakes
Kent Garlic Extreme Liquid Concentrate
DIY Frozen Seafood Mix
Bulk Reef Supply Reef Chilli
Polyp Lab Reef Roids
TestingSalifert
QT MedicationHikari Prazipro
Seachem Cupramine
Kordon Methelyen Blue
Mardel Maracyn Two
Coral DipTwo Little Fishes
ReVive Coral Cleaner