Well, I've spent the afternoon playing with things and have made a little progress toward this tank getting up and running. The MTS has gone through one solid wet/dry cycle and has recently been sifted through a wire top for my 10 gallon reptile aquarium. This worked great as an initial screening to remove all of the large stuff as well as most of the smaller clumps, rocks, and sticks that dint belong in MTS.
Here's a picture of the topsoil following the first sifting/screening:
It's going to go through several more wet/dry cycles and finer screenings. I'm thinking five total should suffice.
FTS with stand:
This sits in our office on a wall adjacent to our desk. This should provide ample opportunity to not get work done!
The inner workings:
Rena xp1, Hydor inline heater, DIY co2 reactor, test kit, refill pitcher, etc. The co2 setup isn't pictured because the tank's empty. This, by the way, is a DIY stand that I originally built for my high-tech 20L.
I painted the back glass black and went ahead and painted the inlet/output pipes with the same black krylon fusion. I'm hoping to keep the internal equipment as low key as possible. Since the tank came with black silicone sealant, I bought myself a tube of the same black silicone that I used to securely mount the pipes within the tank (this is what the green tape is all about).
I just applied a dab of silicone under each suction cup. I'm hoping that the plumbing stays put! I put the spraybar on the left side. I also drilled new holes so that the spraybar sends water out horizontally from left to right and at an angle downward from left to right. I'm hoping that this will help defeat dead spots. I do not want to put more equipment in the tank to fix dead spots.
Here's the clay that I'm using:
I've got dolomite and muriate of potash on the way, and the topsoil is well on it's way to being done.
Let me know what you think!