well guys i havent been very active on 3reef these past couple years mainly cause ive been over on my local forum, the atlanta reef club. but i figure its time to get back to being a little more active on here. so why not do it with another pico build thread since you guys liked my last pico build. it all started when i was at petco picking up a 40 breeder the day after christmas for my main tank upgrade. i saw a 5.5 sitting on the shelf and just couldnt help myself for 5 bucks (turned out to be 13.99 and a whole lot more for everything else). so i got the tank and started coming up with ideas. i decide to build a stand and canopy but i didnt want it to be too big since this was going to sit on a counter. so both the stand and canopy are aprox 2.5 inches tall. and it looks nice and sleek. heres a few build pics. gluing together the frame adding the supports that the tank will sit on. stand done. all supports glued in. testing. perfect fit. gluing together panels to make the lid. starting the canopy. test fit. gap that needs to be fixed. gap fixed adding additional bracing to stand and canopy (wood was too thin for screws so i used gorilla glue) bracing for lid/spacers for leds frames painted gap made even tighter. hinges added beginning of filter test fit. I forgot to take pics for a couple days and got some work done. in the next pic you'll see the lid painted and has a notch for a button that i plan on using to open it. also the filter has had the bubble trap added, strainer/inlet cut and been painted and siliconed in. i wanted the back of the tank to be blacked out but the paint idea didnt work out too well and someone on the Atlanta reef club suggested using tint so i went with it. i stripped the paint off using a razor blade and applied the tint. its not as dark as i would like but its much nicer than the paint job i had on it. back and partial side tinted to cover filter. view from back. also added a notch for wires to come out. video of the button mechanism i made to open the lid. click for video inside pics of button. open and closed stunner strips mounted and cords routed new filter had to be built because the old one kept the water level too high and didnt allow for the amount of flow i want in this tank (120 gph). new filter is also 50% bigger to allow for more matrix and a larger pump down the road if i want it. let there be light. stunners. 1 12k/royal blue, 1 12k/magenta, 1 royal blue, 1 blue. (both blues look the same to me) water and sand in tank. very cloudy even after several rinses cloudyness gone after 10 mins using clarity by seachem filterfloss after pulling out all the junk thanks to clarity diy flow divider half the flow goes straight out and the other half gets pointed to the front left of the tank. seeded matrix to fill the first chamber 2/3 of the way. first chamber filled the rest of the way with new matrix. some of them floating. excessive use of filter floss to help raise water level a little and to keep floating matrix underwater. started work on the rock structure. lid warped after a few days on the tank so im going to build a new one tonight. finished rock structure. i know its small but i may add more to it later. i left it small to allow for coral growth since its such a small tank im hoping the coral will fill in the space pretty quickly. i know that was a very long post and im sorry about that. ive been posting as i go on the arc and just now thought to put this on here. thanks for reading ill update as more happens.