The Reef Tank banner
1 - 20 of 58 Posts

·
spaceman spiff
Joined
·
11,769 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I find my current sump design lacking for the way my tank is set up, and I'm half way decided to build a new one. I'm not fully committed, but I've gone as far as to begin sketching some stuff to see how it would fit, and I'm interested in getting ideas to help ensure I won't be building another one in another year. This will go on my 150 gallon tank, and you can see how packed the first sump was planned on this post. The only difference was that I didn’t put the calcium reactor over the sump as the picture implies, as it was too tall for my liking.

So after clicking that link and seeing the picture, there are two reasons why I'm interested in a new sump. First, the "refugium" I had designed into the first sump was useless, just a waste of space. I had to supply water to it and I didn’t keep anything there. Second, I find a I have a lot of particulate in the water column, and I wanted to add some settling space before water gets to the return pump. And a third reason that I just remembered, to better isolate the water height of the skimmer (if I kill the return pump on my current design, the water level increases in the skimmer section and it overflows the collection cup… I forget about that nearly everytime I turn the return pump off). So here's the new thought, with a forward and top-down view (this is the whole stand, and not all the components are featured in this drawing).




New sump specifics;
Overall dimensions: 46x17.5x18 ~63 gallons
Skimmer section: 14x11x18 ~12 gallons
Settling section: 15x10x18 ~12 gallons
Return section: 15x9.5x18 ~ 11 gallons (includes baffles)

Main changes include;
- Adding 3 gallons of space before increasing skimmer water level
- Moving "refugium" in front of return section (it will not employ a DSB, macro algae, or anything else)
- Adding 10 gallons of system volume
- Moving skimmer output to settling section (flow through sump will be around 750gph, skimmer processes about 70% of that at best)
- Float switches will be installed in return section, but kalkwasser auto-top off will be dumped in the settling section with the calcium reactor effluent

Initial concerns and questions;
- The hose bend on the left return line is much sharper than it was, I'm a little concerned of pinching the hose or having the pump sit funny (thereby causing noisy vibrations).
- What's the best way to have the drain water flow into the skimmer section? I think by having the skimmer output dump into another section, it's irrelevant as all water in that part of the sump will be unprocessed.
- Will this open area for settling be adequate to help remove some of the particulate in my tank? How would that change if I put the calcium reactor in there?

So input is clearly welcome, and I'll surely post design updates and pictures should I actually get to the build. I'm not great with acrylic, but I've done a few things and feel I can succeed in putting another sump together. Thanks!!
 

·
spaceman spiff
Joined
·
11,769 Posts
Discussion Starter · #2 ·
I called my local dealer, as I was curious about different thicknesses. I've been using 1/4" Acrylite FF for other projects, and I wanted to know how much more it was to step up to 3/8". The answer is; cost prohibitive. Since I don't have a huge car, I asked for four sheets of 48"x36". For 1/4", they quoted $36 per sheet. For 3/8", the quote launched to $84 each.

So I will be using 1/4" for this build, but being 46" long should I include some cross braces in the top? I'd prefer not, mostly do to access, but maybe it'd be a better idea. Thoughts?
 

·
spaceman spiff
Joined
·
11,769 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
So 1/4" is acceptable for this? I'm assuming that with baffles, the strength increases, right? I'm thinking of building my own sump out of acrylic too and will follow this thread closely ;)
I dunno, but I'm sure going to use it!!

I've seen many built this size with only 1/4" material, but most have cross braces as well as a perimeter brace. Example.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
579 Posts
Would it really hurt any to have the cross brace? Especially when you consider the overall volume of the sump? Or worse... picturing the contents of it on your floor?

All I'm saying is to think of a tank that is 48" or longer, what do they all have in common when the thickness of the glass doesn't measure a certain amount?... They all have center bracing. But this is just my opinion.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
14,398 Posts
Good point. B ut dont forget, the baffles are melted to each side panel and if done correctly they wil hold the sides together. Also, the baffle placement covers the lebgth pretty well. Of course extra support never hurts when it comes to a lood!
 

·
Enjoy it now
Joined
·
4,085 Posts
i would just put the skimmer outlet back in the skimmer section. who cares if the water is skimmed more than once. plus it makes it that much harder for any escaping micro bubbles to get to the return pump.

G~
I always thought that was a bad idea. I thought if you re-skim already-skimmed water, it's just wasting the effectiveness. Of course, This might be the same thing as a recirc skimmer
 

·
spaceman spiff
Joined
·
11,769 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Motorslave said:
Good point. B ut dont forget, the baffles are melted to each side panel and if done correctly they wil hold the sides together. Also, the baffle placement covers the lebgth pretty well. Of course extra support never hurts when it comes to a lood!
Heh, you'll be the judge of the quality of the joints once I get to building.

I always thought that was a bad idea. I thought if you re-skim already-skimmed water, it's just wasting the effectiveness. Of course, This might be the same thing as a recirc skimmer
I appreciate what Geoff's saying... what you're saying Andy assumes that you pull everything out of the water on the first time around. Probably not very realistic. But, I can just design it this way and try it, see what works better.

I've also considered using the middle section for frag grow out, but we'll see if we get that setup.
 

·
spaceman spiff
Joined
·
11,769 Posts
Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I've also considered using the middle section for frag grow out, but we'll see if we get that setup.
Through today, during an all-day class, my mind may have wandered. I'm beginning to give this notion more credence, so let's run with this idea for a bit.

1) How well would the settling area (middle of the sump) double as a "raceway" for frags?

2) I was thinking about lighting, and considered 150W MH being adequate. It would be only ~8" deep by 15"x18" footprint (if it were wider, I'd probably run with T5 bulbs). I'd probably run the light 5-6 hours per day in the middle of the night. Any objections?
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
14,398 Posts
The only issue I see is water changes along with the cleaning. How would you get the gunk out from under and what kind of turmoil would the frags go through during a wter change?
Hmmmm, the water changes could be made a non-issue if you set up a WC tank like I have dont for the 150 build. That would keep them un bothered. If ou got a small wet dry vac you could quickly suck the junk off of the bottom too.
 

·
spaceman spiff
Joined
·
11,769 Posts
Discussion Starter · #16 ·
The only issue I see is water changes along with the cleaning. How would you get the gunk out from under and what kind of turmoil would the frags go through during a wter change?
Hmmmm, the water changes could be made a non-issue if you set up a WC tank like I have dont for the 150 build. That would keep them un bothered. If ou got a small wet dry vac you could quickly suck the junk off of the bottom too.
Can you link me to some of your water change description? I'm not certain I'm familiar with it. I don't know that I've got the room to make that feasible on this setup, but it may come into play during the next one.

My thought with doing water changes is to have the frags on a grid that takes up only half the floor of that part of the sump. It would be free standing, and I'd be able to slide it out of the way for siphoning as required without removing the frags. I could work it out such that the water level in that spot would be high enough to not dip below whatever's growing down there.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
14,398 Posts
Page 9 post 179 starts a description of the WC system ( the link in my sig is to my build thread) I think there is a diagram and pics farther along the thread. It doesnt have to be that big, its a simple design. Just a by-passable loop that also adds to total system volume.
 

·
spaceman spiff
Joined
·
11,769 Posts
Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Thanks for the info, motorslave. I don't have the room for adding much of an extra tank for that type of design (it would have to in the attic, which gets in the 100s for about 5-6 months a year), but I may have to do something like that should a wetroom ever become a reality!

So I think I'll call to get the acrylic sheets scheduled for a Friday pickup. I'm not entirely convinced of the design yet. But here's my few driving (and somewhat mutually exclusive) requirements;

1 - increase the water heigh in the skimmer to keep it constant
2 - increase the volume of the middle section to allow the most space possible for settling and frags
3 - keep splash down and performance of skimmer at premium

I'm also seriously considering purchasing a MH fixture to stick over the middle section. Someone probably needs to talk me out of it. What wattage though? I'm almost inclined to buy a 250 as it would be most flexible over time, but I'm quite certain a 150 watter woud do fine.
 

·
Carpe Noctem
Joined
·
9,817 Posts
Would it be wrong of me to talk you into getting a fixture over the frag section that is the same as the one over your tank? Fewer acclimation issues for frags going from the tank to the sump and vise-versa. But that's just me:D
 
1 - 20 of 58 Posts
Top