sump for idiots

Discussion in 'Lighting, Filtration & Other Equipment' started by parrotchute, Jan 3, 2009.

  1. parrotchute

    parrotchute DUSTOFF MEDEVAC

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    So....seems everyone cool has a sump. I'd really like to have one so I can safely breed my pods & snails etc - however, all the discussion on forums that I've seen only seems to point to DIY, and those all seem pretty complex for my little mechanical ability. Are there any decent ready made ones? If not, are there any really solid FAQs or guides etc for creating one? I've done a ton of searching on the forum and other forums, but a lot of it seems far over my head and/or space/budget.

    Thanks,
    -Alex
     
    parrotchute, Jan 3, 2009
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  2. parrotchute

    Bifferwine I am a girl

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    DIY sumps are super easy. Even I did it myself! Anything you buy will be much more expensive than just doing it yourself. All you really need is an empty aquarium. Usually the largest one that can fit in your stand. If you want to make sections (like a section for macroalgae and pods, called a refugium), you can go to Lowe's or Home Depot and get a sheet of plexiglass cut. Then silicone in the baffle.
     
    Bifferwine, Jan 3, 2009
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  3. parrotchute

    dustin_P74

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    +1 biff, thats all it takes
     
    dustin_P74, Jan 3, 2009
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  4. parrotchute

    parrotchute DUSTOFF MEDEVAC

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    Haha, Biff, you make it sound easy! Maybe I'll give it a whirl -
    Follow up questions -
    Can I still use my skimmer/can I use it in the sump?
    What do you use to bring the water up & down?
    What kind of animals do you keep in the fuge? Pods/snails/etc?
    Is there a different kind of filter? (I currently have a canister)

    Lots of questions, I know! I love picking your brains!
    -Alex
     
    parrotchute, Jan 3, 2009
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  5. parrotchute

    dustin_P74

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    you need a HOB overflow that will move the water from your tank into the sump and then across your refugium if you decide to have one and then into your skimmer if thats where you want to place it. you can keep your skimmer in your sump, thats the beauty of the sump, it adds water volume to your tank and it also is a great place to hide all of your equipment
     
    dustin_P74, Jan 3, 2009
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  6. parrotchute

    cthegame

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    Biff & Dustin have you covered. For your design, i would make a section for the incoming water (from the DT) and put the skimmer in there. A simple basic concept is 3 sections. 1 skimmer, 2. fuge and 3. outgoing pump (back to the DT)
     
    cthegame, Jan 3, 2009
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  7. parrotchute

    parrotchute DUSTOFF MEDEVAC

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    hmmm, okay -
    What sort of materials do you use and where can you get them?
    (type of tubes?) What sort of pump?
    Thanks!
     
    parrotchute, Jan 3, 2009
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  8. parrotchute

    Piggy

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    Most use PVC for the plumbing which can be bought at home depot or lowes. As for a pump most use submersibles.
     
    Piggy, Jan 3, 2009
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  9. parrotchute

    daugherty part time reefer

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    i used an old tank and siliconed in peices of plexi three sheets about 1 in apart on one end and one on the other end i cut all mine to 15in the bubble trap is just one peice on the bottom up the middle peice is set in about an inch above the bottom and the third one is set on the bottom so it makes an over under effect for the water flow to help eliminate the bubbles.
     
    daugherty, Jan 3, 2009
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  10. parrotchute

    yote Ceritfied Mantis Hunter Moderator

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    PVC is the perfered choice.But you can also use 1" spa flex coming from the overflow to the sump.Then vinyl tube from the return pump back the DT.
     
    yote, Jan 3, 2009
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  11. parrotchute

    daugherty part time reefer

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    i used vinyl tubing for mine
     
    daugherty, Jan 3, 2009
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  12. parrotchute

    Blindloser1080

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    I'm curious. I have an empty 20G that I originally used for freshwater that I could turn into a sump for my 45G. I have a few questions since I'm new to sumps (been using Rena XP series canisters for a while)

    Also helps add on to the sump for idiots! :)

    1) Using PVC pipe, do you use the purple glue that you would normally use while doing sprinkler lines to hold the pipe together?

    2) How exactly does the water get back up into the tank?

    3) What exactly do I need to complete this? (I know I need an overflow box...do I need a powerhead? UV sterilizer?) I want to get all the equipment ordered at once :)

    4) Any way of keeping the sump from overflowing due to a power outage?

    Thanks for all of your help!!!
     
    Blindloser1080, Feb 11, 2009
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  13. parrotchute

    daugherty part time reefer

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    you will need an overflow box. return pump, PVC or vinyl tubing. if you use pvc pipe make shure you add a union to the drain line and the return line so if you ever need to take it apart you can do so without cutting the pipe.
     
    daugherty, Feb 11, 2009
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  14. parrotchute

    wontonflip I failed Kobayashi Maru

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    I just use sealing tape -- that way it's not permanent, in case I want to redo the plumbing. Works great! I've had to redo my plumbing a couple of times to get it just right.

    As for preventing overflowing, you can mark your sump to the max amount of water you should put in there. The way I found my mark is when I had everything set up and running, I cut the power to my return, and watched the water continue to drain down to my sump. Then, I'd scoop out water as needed to keep it from overflowing. That way, if your power fails, then you know the water from your prefilter tube will only fill up the sump so much before it stops pushing water down. Your return hose should either have a check valve or (like mine) have the nozzle point upwards to prevent water from siphoning back down. Some people drill a hole just below the water line.

    Same goes for if for some reason your intake utube fails...there should only be enough water in your return area of the sump so that whatever gets pumped into the main tank doesn't overflow from the main tank. So don't fill your water up to the top of the main tank.

    Dunno if this makes sense, but it works LOL My sump is all marked, and my main tank is filled 1 inch from the top.
     
    wontonflip, Feb 11, 2009
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  15. parrotchute

    Bifferwine I am a girl

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    PVC primer and glue is perfectly safe to use. Make sure it dries completely before you run your tank water through it though.

    You don't need a UV sterilizer, but you do need an overflow box and return pump. You can prevent a flood during a power outage by not overfilling the sump, and using a one-way valve on your return line to prevent a back siphon from draining your tank.
     
    Bifferwine, Feb 14, 2009
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