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Old 01-08-2013, 06:47 PM   #1
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Sump design correct me if I'm wrong please

Please correct me if I'm wrong because I have never attempted to build a sump and I've been staring at sump designs for a few days now attempting to divide mine correctly..

I'm going to silicon the walls and divide up a 30 gallon sump. By looking at other dividers it seems to me that the way to do the layout is:

Left to right:

Chamber one has one wall (on the right) from the ground up (it connects to the floor) allowing it to overflow into chamber 2
Chamber 2 wall has one wall (on the right) that has a gap at the bottom (does NOT connect to the floor) allowing water through that which then feeds UP to a second wall (which DOES connect to the floor) and inevitably overflows into the next chamber

This process then repeats over and over depending on how many chambers I want. Give me a yes or no If I'm correct laying out my dividers like this. Thanks.
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Old 01-08-2013, 07:23 PM   #2
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There are many ways to design a sump. A picture of what you are doing would help immensely. Also, what do you want to accomplish with this sump (mechanical/chemical/bio filtration, refugium, etc)?

Here's one I just built out of a ten gallon tank for my saltwater nano...
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Old 01-08-2013, 07:54 PM   #3
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4 chamber

Nice work on your 10 gallon...

I'm aiming to build a basic 4 chamber for a freshwater tank that hosts Discus fish

Chamber 1 - Filter Bags (semi-large)
Chamber 2 (from top to bottom) - Peat (1/4). Activated Carbon (1/4). Ceramic Rings (2/4).
Chamber 3 - BioBalls OR possibly a refugium?
Chamber 4 - Heater, Return Pump

I guess what I'm trying to mentally clarify to myself is that to force the water through each chamber I want it to go under and then over into another chamber... said in another way, moving from chamber to chamber (regardless of layout) is accomplished by the water overflowing and then on an opposite side going under a wall to overflow into another?

Here is a pretty simple example I found but I want to add one more chamber so I assume I'd replicate that double wall they have?

Also how do I guess how high to make walls? I mean I can just use logic to know that water will run over something BUT how do I guess the way water will be running through the tank (or does that even matter, it will just happen?) Thanks again.
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Old 01-08-2013, 10:44 PM   #4
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That double baffle is a bubble trap, not really needed until right before the return section.

Why not just a simple three chamber setup. Media in first chamber (with a media rack), center chamber return, last chamber refugium (fed by teeing off of the overflow line)?

IMO, bio-balls are a waste of space. Too much crud gets stuck in them. Use more ceramic rings.
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Old 01-08-2013, 11:22 PM   #5
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I like your idea but

blert, I am liking your advice here but how do I set this up? I'm a complete newb and I was going to do a simple three chamber since I realized this would just be easiest since I am a newb. Here is a pic I stole from the net on what I was going to recreate. What if I take your advice but put the refuge in the middle like in this pic?

So I could do media in Section 1
fuge in 2
and 3 is return?

Basically because of my newbness I really don't know the advantages to the fuge being after the return, nor do I know how to feed it by teeing of the overflow... sorry... thanks for the advice though, it is helpful.

Also, if the fuge was after the return how does it flow back? Am I even phrasing this question so that it makes any sense?
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Old 01-09-2013, 12:12 AM   #6
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Usually you want pretty slow flow through the refigium (some may argue otherwise). With the fuge in the center you have no real way of controlling flow to it, it just take the full force. With the return in the center you can control how much water flows thru the fuge by using a ball valve to control the flow through a branch off (with a tee) of your overflow pipe.
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