Sump upgrade is complete! It took all day Saturday, but I can finally say that a project went exactly as planned, which is rare for me!
First thing, after unhooking existing setup and removing everything from stand, I cut the new holes and install bulkheads to the two 30 gallon acrylic sump tanks.
image_zpsdibz4eno.jpg Photo by ericmonaghan | Photobucket
Then I had to fit it all back into the stand (which I of course checked before cutting the holes to be sure.) Here's the living room/ workspace, that 20 long provided the 'essence of the sea' or more like tide pool fragrance during the experience.
image_zpsz4mpsnjs.jpg Photo by ericmonaghan | Photobucket
Because one tank is wider, I had to switch their roles, which worked out better because there was already a 2" bulkhead installed so I could plumb the pump return line straight into it, for a flooded suction, which is ideal for external pumps. I prefer hard plumbing so unions are a must, and here is a perfect example why! This tank will be the new refugium.
image_zps7fdezpfu.jpg Photo by ericmonaghan | Photobucket
Then I put the sump in the other side and connected the two using some 1.5" ID braided vinyl tubing.
As you can see, I have the drains split with one drain going to the refugium, and one going over to the sump/skimmer tank. Then the skimmer tank is connected to the refugium tank using the 1.5 inch vinyl tube, then the return line coming out of the refugium tank. I had to take a 3 hour break to make 25 more gallons of water. Then I fired it up and it was perfect! No leaks or unexpected surprises!
This was a big success, as I now have the refugium section to grow algae and pods
, some added volume which is always good, and best of all, no micro bubbles whatsoever! Those bubbles would make me so mad that my wife would laugh and say that the tank was creating stress rather than relieving it! One more pleasant surprise is the tank is now completely silent, when before you could hear water splashing down into the sump.