The Planted Tank Forum banner

1 - 10 of 10 Posts

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
450 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So I am setting up a new acrylic 55g with overflows and am going to build a sump from a 20 long. I have some ideas based on other peoples sump designs. I want about 8in water in the fuge area and about 5in of water in the return chamber, that way if I have a power outage or clog I won't overflow the sump, or overflow the display tank. I think my idea is solid but could use some eyes of those more experienced then I. First chamber will hold the heater, and for now the return chamber will hold the co2 diffuser until I can get an inline setup on the return.

Heads up, nothing is to scale here.
 

Attachments

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,846 Posts
What are you trying to do with the refugium part of the sump? In a SW reef it's usually a place to grow macro algae and pods, but in a FW planted tank you don't usually need this, so I'm wondering.

You really don't need all those baffles. their main purpose is to create bubble traps. you only need to do this just before the return pump. You can easily drop the first and 6th, numbered left to right with no effect on performance, and it will be a lot wasier to clean.

Offhand I think your going to want the return pump chamber a bit larger. It's got to contain enough water so the overflow on the tank can get up to speed before the return pump area runs dry.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
478 Posts
What are the total dimensions of the sump? That will help in the discussion. But until I know that here are some general comments:

1. The first, 4th and 5th baffles don't seem to be necessary. Remove the first one completely and you get the exact same thing as you do now but with one less baffle. Same thing with the 4th and 5th baffles, remove both of them and your setup stays the same. You can throw the heaters in anywhere, just stick them to the sides of the sump somewhere. If they are in a small chamber before any filtration they will get all gunked up over time.

2. Your return area is too small. All evaporation occurs in the return pump chamber. If it is only 5x5" then you will need to add water every single day of the week or risk the pump running dry and burning out. To prevent flooding the sump keep the return lines above the water line, or add anti-siphon holes slightly above the water line so the return pumps don't siphon water into the sump if the power goes out. To prevent the display tank from overflowing I will need more information on the overflow, but there are usually better ways to do that as well.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
450 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
It's a 20 long so overall its 30x12wx12h. In the refugium area I want to have some more plants as well as space in case someone needs alone time to heal if its a non med type of thing. As for the pump area I can add some space but I will be running a durso stand pipe so it should catch up relatively quick as the overflow will stay full even after the pipe drains. Right now its at about 1.5g capacity. I am not really concerned with power loss, I have that covered via anti siphon holes, just mainly clogging of the overflow. I plan on shoving some filter floss in the first baffle to mechanically clean the water before the biomedia, I just forgot to add it, and maybe some polishing pads before the return.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
478 Posts
It's a 20 long so overall its 30x12wx12h. In the refugium area I want to have some more plants as well as space in case someone needs alone time to heal if its a non med type of thing. As for the pump area I can add some space but I will be running a durso stand pipe so it should catch up relatively quick as the overflow will stay full even after the pipe drains. Right now its at about 1.5g capacity. I am not really concerned with power loss, I have that covered via anti siphon holes, just mainly clogging of the overflow. I plan on shoving some filter floss in the first baffle to mechanically clean the water before the biomedia, I just forgot to add it, and maybe some polishing pads before the return.
It's not an issue of the drain keeping up or not. Evaporation happens in the return pump chamber no matter what your overflow is. Since the water has to reach the overflow to pour into the sump the height of the display tank water is fixed at the overflow height. The height in the first 2 chambers of your sump is fixed by the baffle height. The water will pour down the overflow until it fills the other chambers and eventually pours into the return section. This is the final section and the amount of water that falls into this section is whatever excess water there is in the system. As it evaporates the amount of "leftover" water decreases and the height in the pump chamber will get lower and lower. Eventually there will not be enough water left in the final chamber for the pump and the pump will burn out. The only way to stop this is to add more water throughout the week.

At a 1.5g capacity on a 55g tank this will mean you will probably need to add 0.5g of water every day to the system or it will fail. You may be able to go two days if you have a tight cover. For comparison my uncovered 10g tank loses about 1-1.5 gallon of water a week due to evaporation.

If the tank is 12" high then i'd use as much of that space as possible. I'd raise the chambers to 10" with the other baffles at 11" which means you still have 1" where the water can run over the top of the baffles if something gets clogged. There is also really no reason to have the last chamber at only 5", raise it up to 9" and you almost double the capacity of your return chamber.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
450 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I was looking at the tank in the dark, this morning with a fresh set of eyes I think the overflow grates will allow me to have about 3.5 gallons of space in case the overflow clogs. With that said if I increase the last chamber to 7Lx12WX8H I go to almost 3G of water. I am thinking ATO will be needed anyways, I have to top off my 55g with a canister about a gallon every other day as it is. As for the first baffle it can go like you all said, I was not thinking about just putting the filter floss on top of the bio media. So drop the first and fourth baffle, then raise the height of everything up to 10in.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
474 Posts
Having just built a 20 sump, keep more room for access and cleaning (less small compartments). A 20 isn't a big volume, and especially if you have to chase the odd fish into it or get a line in for mulm cleaning, access can be a pain.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
450 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I HATE Sketchup, at least from a 3D printing standpoint. I should try it out just for simple stuff that won't ever be printed.

As for the small compartments I think I will only have a single one for a bubble trap. Thanks for the advice everyone.
 
1 - 10 of 10 Posts
Top