Yeah- prices for the one rated for my 75 gallon rage from $625- $700. For several reasons, not the least of which is that my tank is in front of a window- I know, I know, don't wince, at least it's facing north so no direct sun) I have to get a chiller. There's no way I can keep that tank consistantly cool with my little fan and freezing the water into ice cubes, etc. ....What temperature range will my bimac need?
I have brought my tank temp down from 80 to 75 in the last few hours and still going down slowly...my baby bimac will be delivered in the next hour by Fedex.
Well, what about a thermoelectric chiller? Azoo has some models available that run $300 and $400, respectively. Can find them at various major online stores. I suspect that if you're looking to bring your tank temp down a handful of degrees and not create a coldwater tank, this would be adequate for you. They have the advantage of no moving parts (unless there's an internal pump) and are nearly silent...perhaps they have a cooling fan, but should be nothing like the racket a compressor makes. Thermoelectrics work by a weird phenomenon in physics whereby certain combinations of materials, when an electric current is applied to them, move heat from one surface to another. I'm told it's not as energy-efficient as a compressor, but for a typical ceph tank I'll bet its a good compromise.
Oh...and I don't remember if we discussed sumps or not before. They require some fiddling, but are a definite option. Evaporative cooling from a fan on your sump (if you installed one) should be adequate. They can be built without drilling holes--you just use a specialized siphon-fed overflow box. Doesn't quite work as well as drilling, but works well enough, and the biggest drawback once it's running is a bit of noise.
Thanks Rusty- I'll look at those too. What temp range will my bimac need? (She's due to arrive at my doorstep within the next 30 minutes.)
I'm not made of money, but I'm leaning toward the drop-in type because I honestly don't understand how to hook up the in-line type and I can see it being too complicated. I like the idea of just putting this coil down in the tank and setting the temp and that's that. I've brought my tank temp down in the last several hours by blowing a small fan on the water surface, and I'm still getting it down, but I can't continue this because tiny droplets of tank water get around the aquarium and on other things in the room that I don't want to have saltwater all over.
This Ice Probe model seems to be a popular one, (only $100)but I'm embarrassed to say that when I look at these things, I don't see how they hook up- where the water goes in or out, etc...so I don't know if they'll work for me. I see the thick tube sticking up and I can't understand- I'm sure you don't put it down into the water. I wish I understood all this, but I'm learning all this as I go along....gotta go- my baby's here!!!
Yes, and you also have the issue of octo-escape to consider...generally, a clamped-down lid is better. Bimacs aren't so prone to it, but...can happen. That's why I went to a sump...it was a bit easier to escape-proof the tank, and because I have some corals and strong lighting, I'm putting some decent heat in there anyway. Evap. cooling from building a sump was the cheapest way for me to go. If I really need to, I can get a $100 Ice Probe (also available on common sites like Drs. Foster & Smith) and put that in my sump. All told the sump only cost me roughly $150 total, for the overflow box, plumbing, pump, big 24-gallon Rubbermaid tub, etc.
Not that I'm trying to hammer the idea of a sump home...you have your own circumstances to consider, especially if your ambient temp isn't low enough. I'm not sure what precisely is involved in setting up these Azoo chillers but I believe it's as easy as setting up a drop-in coil chiller, because I think all you have to do is get some vinyl tubing, clamps, and a powerhead, and there are probably directions in the box (or your LFS could give good advice.) I THINK the compressor-style chillers require you to have a temperature controller, which (I think) runs roughly $100? These Azoo models are adjustable and shouldn't need that. I can't swear for 'em, but I THINK they're your cheapest option if a sump isn't practical.
Good luck working something out...you should especially ignore my advice if it involves anything you're just plain not ready to try yet...and good luck with your new bimac!
Okay, maybe I'm panicking. I've brought the temp down to 72 degrees with that fan. Maybe I can just do what a lot of other people do and use frozen bottled water and fans, etc....another thought- my tank is in front of a window (facing north, so not directly in the sun) but what if I put a small air conditioner in the window? That would blow on the back of the tank- what do ya'll think??....If it worked, then what I thought was a huge mistake (putting it in front of a window) could turn out to be the best thing.
The baby's very cute. She's acclimated well. I put her in a bucket and slowly added my tank water for a couple of hours, then put only her/him in the tank. She never inked. I put a small hermit crab in the bucket and she nabbed it immediately. Very vicious already. Like the dwarf, she also doesn't seem to know what to do with a ghost shrimp, which would've made my life a lot easier
(smacks forehead) Of course! Next to a window...silly Rusty...hehehe. Yeah, I think a window AC unit, especially if the tank's so close to it, would be perfect. Good thinking! Congrats on your happy baby...any chance of a photo sometime?
Yeah, it should work. If it does, from now on, I'll always put my big tank in front of a window if I ever move, so that I can use an air conditioner to cool it. I just bought a small $100 unit.
I'll post a picture as soon as I can. The baby is being very protective right now, hiding under a piece of liverock. It's so tiny, that 75 gallon is an enormous home for her right now.