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Old 12-14-2003, 03:29 PM   #1
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Unique filtering question...

It was suggested I ask on this forum as it is assumed more experience with large tanks would be here rather then in the FW forum.
I have a 400 gallon custon aquarium that I will be using as FW and will utilize two types of filtering: I will have a wet/dry setup that will skim water from the top surface - filter it and return it back into the top.
The second filtering process I need some input on. I am going to use an UG filtering system that will be gravity fed by the three existing drains in the bottom of the tank into a filtering box beneath the tank and then pumped back up the the top of the tank. Within the filtering box would be the carbon and filtering medium. I realize that I need shutoff valves before and after the box to facilitate shutting off the water flow when I wish to change the fitering medium. The advice I need is on fabricating the box . It MUST be water tight so that if I should have a power failure I won't have the entire tank drain onto my floor. I am considering using an army surplus metal ammo box (as they are water tight) but I would appreciate any input as how to make it of plexi or if anyone knows of an item already made that would help. The pump I am using is a Little Giant 4-MDQX-SC. Thanks in advance for your help. Mike
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Old 12-14-2003, 05:08 PM   #2
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if you have a wet/dry, why are you needing another type of filtration. I run my 240 cichlid tank w/ nothing but a wet/dry, and an occasional use of a cannister filter to clean rocks
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Old 12-15-2003, 09:05 AM   #3
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Two filtration systems recommended.

I am going with the two filtration systems as it was recommended by the manufacturer of the Aquarium.

Is it implied that you can clean the water too much?

I realize that many fish affecionadoes feel that an UG filter is a thing of the past but I wish to see for myself as I feel it can be an excellent system being it draws water thru the gravel and out the bottom and returns the filtered water to the top.

Also, after implementing both filters I will always have the option of only using one filter to see if either one is adequate or not.

Back to my original question: Does anyone know of an existing "box" or item that I may implement ? Any recommendations as to how to construct a "box"?
Thanks.
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Old 12-15-2003, 11:08 AM   #4
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I don't really think I understand your question, or at least the setup anyway. Your "box", I believe you are referring to a sump? You can use anything for a sump. Something as simple as a rubbermaid plastic storage conatiner. I don't think i could recommend an ammo can. Or plexy glass/acrylic is fairly easy to work with. Look in the DIY forum of this sire and see the thread about building you own tank. It explains the basics there that should more than meet you needs. However I guess my question for you is: If this 400 Gallon tank is draining from the bottom via gravity, will you now need a sump that can hold the entire volume in case of power outage? Mighty big sump. I guess it would work if the "box" is completely inclosed more like a closed loop system with a holding box.
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Old 12-15-2003, 11:21 AM   #5
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I think what you're planning may be nothing but trouble and a nightmare waiting to happen.

even if you used a siphon setup to pull water through the UGF and then up out of the tank rather than draining it through the bottom, any power failure or maintenance problems with your pump and the whole thing is a mess on your floor (unless your sump was located at the same height as your display tank which might be an option)

The only thing I can think of, is it pump water up OUT of your display tank, drawing through the UGF, locate the sump above your display tank, and use an overflow in the sump to move water back to the display tank.

I would be VERY afraid of using a set up as you described.
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Old 12-15-2003, 11:36 AM   #6
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actually, these bottom drains would be excellently suited for connection to a canister filter, rather than a sump.

the canister is designed to be a closed system, and handles a gravity siphon already.

so it would pump water from the bottom drain and return it to whatever connection you provide but any water trying to rush into the filter is offset by the water returning from the filter, so even during a power outage, there's no leaking because the water pressure is at equilibrium
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Old 12-15-2003, 11:43 AM   #7
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oh, forgot to add

check out this canister:

http://www.eheim.com/Zubehoer.cgi?Mo...er=Gesamtliste

you mention you have 3 drains... so with 3 of the eheim 2250's connected, you'd have enough filtration for roughly 780 gallons, which means even if one filter should fail for some reason, you're left with plenty of filtration to keep things operating. You also have the ability to stagger the cleaning of the filters, without effecting the tank's filtration - clean one per 10 days and you'll always two still running the tank.
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Old 12-15-2003, 03:22 PM   #8
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[b] Thanks JUSTDIY...[/b]

JustDIY seemed to understand the setup I have although I tried my best to describe it. The three canisters may be exactly what i am looking for. It had also been suggested, elsewhere, that I use an inline sanitizer.

I am now looking into the various possibilities based on the suggestions given.

BillyZ & Reef - I made no mention of using a sump.... What I wish to have is a closed filtering system so that if I have a power failure I wouldn't have a complete drainage of my aquarium. The wet/dry filter will be set up to drain from the top and if that filter shuts off then the filter box has the capacity to hold the water in the input tube - once the water level goes below the tube. The inherant problem with the wet/dry thru an input tube is when there is water evaporation which causes the tube to no longer suppy water to the filter - thus no filtering.

Thanks again JUSTDIY and I shall let you know how it all works out.
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Old 12-15-2003, 03:35 PM   #9
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glad to help! ... I'd love to see pictures of your tank and setup when you get things sorted.
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Old 12-15-2003, 03:39 PM   #10
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If you decide to not go with the box and stuff, have you considered a reverse UGF? With a tank that size you could power your reverse UGF with a bunch of big momma powerheads

You could put low-lying powerheads to stir up the poop before it settles into the substrate and also run a couple of big HOBS or some cannisters to pick up the fish waste. Your gravel would theoretically stay sparkling poopless. Or not LOL. This is just one of my theories... I have yet to try it out.


Let us know how everything turns out and what you decide to do.
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