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Old 08-08-2013, 11:26 AM   #31
crazymittens
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So to summarize, your concerns are:
  • Refugium drain as designed could lose CO2
  • Refugium should drain in the same place the display drains
  • Operating height in-sump might not account for power outages

I get why you don't want the refugium set up that way...but consider this:
  1. Refugium drains via internal overflow box
  2. Overflow box drains into sump as pictured
  3. Once through mech filtration, the water spills into pump area
  4. 2/3 chance it gets picked up and sent to the main tank
  5. Main tank drains through 'proper' channels

Is that not alleviating the issue? Will it really affect filtration that much? I would think having the refugium water cycle through the display is a good thing - more plants there.

I'll check into lifting the refugium, but as-is I barely have adequate working space under the stand, I do understand your point - and ideally I would not be drilling, so will work on alternatives. To get the proper drain plumbing, I'd have to raise it like 6"...

Good point about sealing that area, should I go that route.

Regarding enough operating height in the sump - I have tons. Main tank's overflow will only drain 1-2 gallons (off the top of my head, probably less), refugium's overflow even less. I could probably raise the water level by 4-5" and still be safe. I know this because my current overflow design is identical, but 2x the length, and it only loses 1-2 gallons in an outage (tested & verified). We good!


In other news, I saw the planted HOB thread and decided to look into incorporating it into the display tank's overflow... http://www.plantedtank.net/forums/sh...d.php?t=170324
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Old 08-08-2013, 07:06 PM   #32
pandacory
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Yes, seal where the refugium enters the sump. You may want to add another baffle so that the flow enters below the water line instead of from above, then seal from there back. Basically accomplishing the same thing as the bio section, but without the bio media.

And yes, do your best to lift the refugium so there is 0 risk of sump back washing the refugium. Otherwise you're dealing with a linked resevior with inhabitants. Not a bad thing, but won't be as flexible as the design intention seems to be.

When the pump stops the siphon clears the overflow box, and the entire surface of the tank to the height of the skimmed portion. So if your tank is 72x18 footprint and the water flowing over the weir is 1 inch thick, you will have 72x18x1=1296~5.6gal headed to your sump. Same applies to the refugium. You probably already knew that, but the post sounded like only the box would clear. Give yourself plenty of wiggle room. 1" is probably way overestimating, unless you are pushing a ton of flow.
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Old 08-09-2013, 12:48 PM   #33
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Thanks, pandacory - I'll see what I can do about the refugium plumbing.

Good point about the weir/water level, but the weir today is only 1/4" - I expect the same on the new system (plumbing restrictions will make it worse, but it's half the width, so should end up the same).

In my power-down tests, the 30G sees a rise of ~1-2", whatever that volume works out to. 50G will probably be similar with my layout. There should be about 2-3x that amount available. I will, however, go back and actually calculate this - again, valid point.



Well, last night I filled the spare tank for water testing. Despite my thoughts that the top plastic ring did nothing, the middle bowed a fair bit, so I threw a clamp on it with very light pressure, just in case. Also tossed a little pump in there to keep water moving.

With the tank purchase came a few bags of some sort of biomedia...I went through this article ( http://www.monsterfishkeepers.com/fo...o-Filter-Media ) but it did not mention the type I have at home. This leads me to believe they are not media at all, but in fact just the stuff used for hydroponic gardening.

I did see those used here, however: Bogopolis journal

RobMc's sump has them in the drain area...I figure if nothing else I can add them in...better than just water taking up space. Further to this, I'll be revisiting the sump design, adding another baffle section, and ensuring the wet/dry area is a true wet/dry.


In other news, I made the mistake of researching fluidized bed filters (FBF). http://www.plantedtank.net/forums/sh...d.php?t=179279 This has led me to wonder if even a small FBF could be used as a 'okay, stock levels are a bit ridiculous, release the FBF'. Not that I expect to require one...but very interesting nonetheless. Another link here: http://www.cichlid-forum.com/articles/diy_fbf.php

The Youtube guy, uraujoey (sp?), did a how-to on FBF a year ago or so, and DANG it looked so darn cool. He didn't do sand, I think K1, so slightly different principle...but it looked so awesome. Anyways...no budget right now, but good to know it's a functional piece of filtration tech.
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Old 08-09-2013, 03:50 PM   #34
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I also have interest in fbf for bio filtration! Mostly due to my being a total gear whore.

Check out the pond guru on youtube. He made a pretry simple one you could throw in the sump.

I thought it would be neat to do one in line in one of those house filter units like the in line co2 reactors are set up. Probably just an extra source of unnecessary flow loss and potential failure point.
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Old 08-09-2013, 04:01 PM   #35
crazymittens
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Yeah, it would for sure have to be in-sump. Maybe next time...
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Old 08-09-2013, 05:25 PM   #36
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Ok, we're already doing crazy, right? How's this for crazy...



Overcomplication? Check. Rube Goldberg-ness? Check. Any serious issues? You tell me.

You can see the change on the right, where the refugium drains into the sump. Water fills the first chamber, then flows up through the mech filter sponge, then DOWN AN INCLINED SPILLWAY - oh yeah that's right - onto the drip tray, thus maintaining flow through the biomedia.

The 'other' way would be routing the drains horizontally, but to be honest I'm not sure how the siphon would be maintained over 3 lateral feet of travel.

If my concerns about siphon vs. lateral travel are legit, I'm totally doing this. Haha!!!
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Old 08-09-2013, 07:48 PM   #37
pandacory
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Thats crazy talk...

1. Remove spillway
2. Add baffle so that refugium water enters pump chamber from below instead of from above
3. Quit while you're ahead
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Old 08-09-2013, 07:58 PM   #38
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Just to confuse things. This guy got a separate refugium to work with a single filter exactly how you had proposed.

Maybe not as crazy as I thought you were...

http://www.melevsreef.com/acrylics/s...plit_sump.html
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Old 08-10-2013, 12:30 AM   #39
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No, still crazy, but a validated crazy. Like those guys that jump cars 300 feet...it's all math...but still crazy.

I did a little sketchup today on the stand...raising the refugium is gonna be next to impossible while still allowing access from the top.

Anyways...still have to research, but should be a simple question...how far laterally can siphon be maintained before collapsing? I guess in theory, siphon is siphon - no air...right?
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Old 08-10-2013, 02:17 AM   #40
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Whee! Haha it looks pretty cool.


Finally found a use for outdated technical books...


Dumped in 5ml of ammonia to get things going - if they already weren't. The XP1 has been running for a month or so on the 20G-that-never-was. 20G, we hardly knew ye.

This is pretty awesome progress - if the fishless cycling goes quickly, we could have fish transferred and teardown started next week! Woot!



I'm still gleeful about the spillway. So ridiculous. Of course, the key point with that entire sketch is that the LID of the sump is doing all the sealing. You know, the lid that doesn't really exist right now. I may need to adjust my glass budget...
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Old 08-10-2013, 04:59 PM   #41
Phil Edwards
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crazymittens View Post
Ok, we're already doing crazy, right? How's this for crazy...


crazymittens,

Observations/lessons learned from experience-

1. Thin sheets of foam (<3" thick) are a royal pain to work with. Trying to slide a thin sheet of foam into a tight space is no fun. It'll bunch up, and because it's a compressible material won't evenly fill the space intended. Thick blocks are a lot easier to manipulate and don't get clogged as easily. You'll be much better served in the long run by moving the whole filter chamber to the right a couple inches and using a 4-5" thick block of foam at the inlet of your wiers. It's a lot easier to get out and clean.

If you want to get super fancy and use acrylic here you can avoid some problems and just use a brace-frame with a hollow middle for your first/left most baffle instead of a full sheet to hold the foam in and have a huge open area for water to flow through. That'll also increase input of well-oxygenated water through a greater volume of foam.

If you want to get even fancier you can make an eggcrate housing for it that'll keep the foam in shape at all times. All you'll need do is pull the whole assembly out and hit it with a garden hose or tub spigot. Since it'll be physical filtration and not your main source of bio filtration cleaning it really well won't knock your bio back much.

2. Make sure the top of all the baffles for the main drain are well below your sump's rim. This is especially important here since larger particles and dead leaves will make their way into your sump from this point. Because the point of entry (as currently designed) is at the bottom of the foam rather than the top, it WILL get clogged regardless of your best intentions; guaranteed. It's much better to have unfiltered water returning to the tank than flooding your floor.


Murphy loves Rube Golberg. Better to plan on Life or Sh*% happening than leave it to luck. It's a lot of fun to think about and design stuff like this though, isn't it?


re: refugium return technical considerations-

1. I agree, ditch the spillway, it's extraneous and will just make access to the reservoir more difficult.

2. Ditch the whole baffle-foam assembly for the refugium return and route them to discharge into the DT return chamber. Routing it this way take advantage of the larger filter volume of the main chamber to re-filter the water. Plus, it will free up space in the reservoir for more water, use of thicker foam at the point of entry, and/or allow you to make the main filter chamber larger. Either way, it's a win/win(/win?).


pandacory,

Thanks for the link to the in-tank weir thread. I'd forgotten about that design and think a modified approach would work very well for my tank. I'm sure crazymittens will be happy too since he's been lobbying me to do an external box for my drains. Now to find glass shops and get quotes.



note: this post went through a lot of revisions. Cut and paste errors likely happened.

Last edited by Phil Edwards; 08-10-2013 at 05:11 PM.. Reason: formatting
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Old 08-10-2013, 05:27 PM   #42
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Phil, great input, thanks! FYI the glass quotes I got when I was getting lids cut were quite a bit lower than I was expecting - then again that was 1/8" glass. The edge polishing was only like another $5 for the whole order.
  • Okay, fine. No spillway. Spoilsports. (I do agree, the simpler the better - as you say...fun)
  • The foam thickness thing makes complete sense, but I was trying to minimize the budget and re-use everything.
  • That eggcrate idea...yup, I can subscribe to that. Very much getting into 'enough room under the stand' issues, though. Brace-frame - I could manage that, will look at it as a second option.
  • The baffles will leave ~1" of room in case of mech clogging, good to point out though!


So neither of you answered/addressed the question about siphon maintaining itself over lateral distances... Guess it's off to google!
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Old 08-10-2013, 05:34 PM   #43
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Hm...not much comes up. Guess I'll be guinea-pigging this in the garage during wet tests.
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Old 08-11-2013, 08:33 PM   #44
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Red lotus moved into the 10G Walstad planter


Gah! What do I do with all these???


End of an era


Fish moved into their new home!



Pretty sure the fishies are okay, especially with the added driftwood/plants. No clue if those crypts will survive un-planting...there must be ~100 separate plants!! The jungle val, also...I read you can place them all between wet newspaper, keep in dark place for a week or so...?

The basement smells like a pond now...my wife is slightly displeased...but happy with progress. So we good.
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Old 08-12-2013, 01:17 AM   #45
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Somewhat amazingly, during the sump disassembly I found not just one, but two shrampies! (amano) Incredible. Also, the platy baby is still alive, but proving insanely hard to capture. Will let the sediment settle and try again tomorrow.

Got an answer on the plants...so will be leaving them floating in the 20g. Thanks, WestHaven!

My next chore is separating the gravel/MTS. Will be thinking that through....probably just window screen and some water.
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