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Good discussion all around.

I do not quite understand the wet/dry concept involving anaerobic bacteria and aerobic bacteria either. In general layman's biology terms, aerobic means "with oxygen" and anaerobic means "without oxygen". As a graduate with a biology degree I can discuss what both of those mean in terms of cellular respiration, but along with Crazymittens I do not know exactly how they pertain to aquarium biology filtration.
 

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I've always read that pretty much ALL bacteria we have in our tanks are aerobic. to have anaerobic you would need a very specialized type of filter or a deep sand bed. I don't believe that a wet/dry would give you anaerobic, it would just maximize the aerobic bacteria, which we all have in plenty in a cycled tank.

I would be interested to read tom barr's discussion on this.....
 

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Discussion Starter · #43 ·
I think the benefit of wet/dry is that you get two types of bacteria. If you just do wet you miss out on the benefits of the 'dry' bacteria. i.e. aerobic vs. anaerobic. This is what I figured from Tom Barr et al. anyways. He made a good point that any 'professional' sump will incorporate wet/dry.

Canisters are fine, but you are forced to keep up on water changes. The sump is part1 in reducing the need for constant water changes (expanding your volume). The wet portion gives you anaerobic bacteria. The dry portion gives you aerobic bacteria.

I'm not gonna pretend I know exactly what they do, but I know that having both is key for 'best filtration'.

I guess your situation is different since you're breeding, but I've had this tank online since early November and I've done one 25% water change. Water is crystal clear. Fish are happy. Plants are growing. Tank is clean. Just saying that since one of your goals was low maintenance, you'd want to incorporate every asset in the sump arsenal to help.

I look forward to the build nonetheless!


One item I was searching for was the 'silver bullet' of sumps. As of this time, since the freshwater sump seems to be a new concept, there is no concrete answer beyond 'look at what the pros do'. Sump discussion threads like this greatly interest me - thanks for taking the time to diagram and discuss! :D
I agree with you mate, I figured a good design thread was necessary as there really aren't many freshwater discussions out there, much less planted freshwater. I've learned alot in talking over this design. I realize that I will have to do more water changes, however, I was planning on doing that any way. I guess our aims are a little different. As this will be a high light/ ei dosed/ co2 injected tank, so increased water changes are a must for me. But they will be automated, don't worry.


Good discussion all around.

I do not quite understand the wet/dry concept involving anaerobic bacteria and aerobic bacteria either. In general layman's biology terms, aerobic means "with oxygen" and anaerobic means "without oxygen". As a graduate with a biology degree I can discuss what both of those mean in terms of cellular respiration, but along with Crazymittens I do not know exactly how they pertain to aquarium biology filtration.

Yeah, I can understand that much too, not sure of much else though in those regards.

Thanks again everyone,
Joshua
 

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Part of what makes this is a great thread is no one is throwing stones and trying to force others to agree with them, everyone is sharing thier knowledge and experience and trying to learn....of course, I'm more right than everyone else :) joking:)
 

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oh... I have a mag 5 as my return pump and use the foam prefilter that came with it. I had a mag 9.5 but it blew my sand and plants around too much.
 

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I have the new Aqueon AQ1700 as my return pump. I was a little skeptical about the brand but I couldn't argue as it was a Christmas gift. But I will say, it is quiet, and the GPH is pretty much exactly how I needed it. Not too strong, not too weak. We'll see how long it performs....
 

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If you are worried about that you can do a couple of things, but I don't think it will be an issue.

First, you can lower your intake pipe/tube towards the bottom of the sump. This way the water will travel in a upwards path into your foam and eventually over the top, but it might not be 100%. If you go this method, be sure NOT to block the water coming out. So make sure to suspend you intake tube about 3 inches or so above the bottom of the sump.

Second, you can simply add a second wall in front (intake side) of your foam. Seal the wall all the way to the top of sump and leave an inch of space at the bottom. This way, the water has no choice but to travel below the new wall and up through your foam and out the top.
 

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Discussion Starter · #52 ·
If you are worried about that you can do a couple of things, but I don't think it will be an issue.

First, you can lower your intake pipe/tube towards the bottom of the sump. This way the water will travel in a upwards path into your foam and eventually over the top, but it might not be 100%. If you go this method, be sure NOT to block the water coming out. So make sure to suspend you intake tube about 3 inches or so above the bottom of the sump.

Second, you can simply add a second wall in front (intake side) of your foam. Seal the wall all the way to the top of sump and leave an inch of space at the bottom. This way, the water has no choice but to travel below the new wall and up through your foam and out the top.
I like the second step, its one more piece of glass, but I like the idea. I'll still get horizontal flow, but it will be more forced. I think I would leave .5" from the top of the sump though, just to have some ugh oh room incase of flooding. I'll post a pic in a sec of the new design.
 

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Discussion Starter · #53 · (Edited)


Basically the only thing that would change would be the addition of the new glass. before the sponges on the right, causing the water to go down first and then up. If I use this configurations, I may invert the sponges horizontally and having it rise through the media, like a canister filter style. I think it would give overall better filtration?I'll just make a basket type system for the bio media on top.

 

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Before I put anything in my sump I did a test power outage. I filled my display tank up and put enough water in my sump to let the return pump to run with no issues. I let that run for approximately 10 min to let the water levels in the sump and main tank to stabilize (measure here) (add more water at this point if you feel your water level in the main is too low) then I simply shut it all off. I let the water drain from the main to sump until it reach below the intake where it would not drain anymore. I measured from my starting water level in the sump before the power outage then the level after the power outage. And now you have a pretty accurate idea of how high you can fill your sump.
 

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Basically the only thing that would change would be the addition of the new glass. before the sponges on the right, causing the water to go down first and then up. If I use this configurations, I may invert the sponges horizontally and having it rise through the media, like a canister filter style. I think it would give overall better filtration?I'll just make a basket type system for the bio media on top.
You nailed it.
 

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Well here is what I'm doing with my 40B sump on 120 gallon:
Divided into 2 sections with 2 peices of Poret foam, both 3 inch, one 20 and one 30 PPI. My overflows dump into a basket with poly filter pads, this basket is cut into a peice of eggcrate and there are two hole cut in the bottom. The holes drain into the first compatment with k1 fluidized bed filter media which is aerated by 4-5 big air stones. This compartment also has my heaters and bags of seachem matrix. The first compartment is also much larger than second. All that's in second compartment is return pump and simplicity chemical reactor with purigen in it.
 
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