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Old 05-29-2006, 05:53 PM   #1
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Adding sump or refugium

Basically this is just a thought, but is there anyway to add one or both of the items mentioned in the title to a tank that has been running for 2 years with a smooth transition. Remember it is a thought and No's are openly accepted. My stand really doesn't have much room and there is no space on the back of the tank for a HOB. TIA
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Old 05-29-2006, 06:21 PM   #2
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What is underneath the stand now, and what are the available dimensions?
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Old 05-29-2006, 06:53 PM   #3
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Yes you can. All based on the question asked about dimension. This question will give you an idea as what you can add. As far as a smooth transition goes I assume you mean "not interrupting the tanks notmal operation" right? Well that sort of depends too. You can do a simple over the wall siphon and a submersible pump for water movement which doesn't require you to drill anything and would have very littel impact to the tank. just my opinion.
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Old 05-29-2006, 09:05 PM   #4
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Nothing is underneath the stand except a wavemaker and other items that can go somewhere else (such as boxes of my appliances) . The reason there isn't much space is because there is a divider going down the middle splitting the stand into two sides. About the siphon I'm pretty sure this is risky right, because of the chance of an overflow or spill or something of that matter? I have an 10 gal long tank that is laying around, could that be used for any kind of DIY project? Just trying to collect some ideas. Thanks!
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Old 05-29-2006, 09:26 PM   #5
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siphon style overflows aren't as "risky" as the powerhead driven overflows. Once you gain a solid understanding how it all works and implement "safeties," then the risk is really diminished so your worry goes away.
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Old 05-29-2006, 09:52 PM   #6
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post a pic, is this a 55 if not what size tank..
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Old 05-29-2006, 09:54 PM   #7
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This is a 55, but I can't really post a pic, sorry. How would a siphon setup work? TIA
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Old 05-29-2006, 10:37 PM   #8
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It's pretty simple.

You could go with a hang-on overflow box that pulls water from your display and sends it to your sump. Then you need to buy a pump rated slightly above what your overflow is rated for.

The basic concept is that the pump returns the water at the rate the siphon pulls it out. The complication occurs if your pump is too strong for the overflow....but that's why you place a gated valve after the pump to control the flow back to the tank. (never place a valve before the pump though, that will destroy it).

Your overflow will never siphon faster than the pump, it can only match it provided the pumps' flow doesn't exceed the overflows rating.

Your next concern is power failure. When the power goes out, all the water in your plumbing will fall back into the sump. The overflow will stop siphoning, inherent in its design, but will not break the siphon. They are designed to restart automatically when the power returns. (powerhead driven ones require the PH to keep the siphon and can be more risky during a power failure) I would definetely opt for something like a www.lifereef.com overflow (called prefilter boxes on their site).

Now the tricky part is that the RETURN plumbing will start to back siphon on a power failure. It will continue to suck water out of your display tank and overflow your sump unless you utilise siphon-breaks or have your return plumbing only just slightly submerged.

Once air is introduced into the plumbing, the siphon is broken. So.....as water is being back-siphoned out of your display, it will stop once the level drops just below the top portion of your return pipe. Or, if your want your returns submerged more, you drill a small hole in the pipes just below the surface in the display tank. The water level will drop and expose the hole (siphon-break), introduce air and stop the back-siphon.

You need to run your sump/fuge at a level that will accomodate all the water currently in the plumbing (overflow side, and return side), and amount that will be back-siphoned.

That's the "long and short" of the "long and short" of it.

hope that makes sense.

Ryan
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Old 05-29-2006, 11:44 PM   #9
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I decided that if I were to do this I would only want a refugium because the rest of my appliances are HOB. I really don't have that much space on the back maybe 5-6 in. but the HOB area on my tank is also very limited with a skimmer and a filter already there. Is there anything I can still do with all of this limited space. TIA
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Old 05-30-2006, 12:17 AM   #10
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Another benefit of having a sump is that it gives you a place to store all the unsightly equipment you mentioned.

You place your skimmer, heaters, filters, thermometers etc ALL in the sump. Hidden away from all to see.

You then are left with only the overflow box off of the back and the return plumbing. The tank then only has the powerheads in it, with some evidence of the return plumbing as well, (white 90 degree pvc elbows).

Under your tank will be the "brains" behind your operation.
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