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Old 11-03-2011, 10:39 PM   #1
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Constrained space refugium....

I posted about my tank before, but I've been reading a bit on here and have some ideas I thought i throw out there for you guys to pick apart.

I "inherited" a SWFO 61 gallon tank which is built into the wall. There are 4 somewhat aggressive fish in there which seem pretty happy. There is crushed coral substrate and not much else in there. There is a wet-dry filter built into the side of the tank, but after looking at what a wet-dry filter should be, I don't think the one there is very good. The tank is 46 long x 28 tall by 12 wide. There are 6 inches that have been sectioned off from the length of the tank and it has been split into two chambers w a space on the bottom where they communicate. The water overflows into one side, hits a drip plate, goes through prefilters resting on a plastic grill, then some porous stone, then through bioballs resting on another plastic grill. The water then moves to the other chamber through the bottom and is pumped back into the tank w a 250 gph danner pump. Looking at Wet-dry filters it seems like the bioballs should be under the drip plate and be basically "dry" or not submerged. My bioballs are all submerged all the time and there was a lot of tan goo all over them which I have already gently rinsed off.

Here is my sort or thought out plan.
1. replace the crushed coral w 50 lb of sand.
2. put in 50 lb of rock
3. Wait a month or 3 for the sand and rock to become live
4. Take out the bioballs. try to squeeze a protein skimmer and maybe some live rock in the overflow part (6 by 6 by 28) and then put sand on the bottom of this kind of refugium w cheato on the other side along w the sump.
I made a pretty ugly sketch of this....
I also included a pic of the current tank..

I really cant put a seperate refugium/sump in without some major demolition and some major wife upsetting...

Is this worth trying or a waste of time?

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Old 11-03-2011, 11:09 PM   #2
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50lbs of LR and LS is a great idea. Removing the bioballs is a good idea. The fuge can't hurt, there are skimmers will fit in a 6x6 footprint. All in all it seems like it would work. Good luck.
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Old 11-03-2011, 11:29 PM   #3
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Although any skimmer that will fit in a 6x6 footprint is going to fit pretty snug. So in order to get it in there you'll have to have it directly over the opening and lower it straight down. Do you have 20+ inches above the tank? Also, you'll have to figure out where the outlet from the skimmer would go if it fits.
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Old 11-03-2011, 11:40 PM   #4
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That has been a worry of mine because I dont have 20 inches of space. There is only about 10 inches of space above that side . I have more overhead space in the other chamber, but does it matter if the skimmer is in the overflow side or the return? The power is all set.
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Old 11-03-2011, 11:51 PM   #5
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The problem you'll have putting the skimmer on the return side is microbubbles being pumped into your DT. You could always just not run a skimmer. Put a DSB, LR, macro in your fuge and call it a day.
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Old 11-03-2011, 11:59 PM   #6
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ok thanks for your thoughts!!!

ill let you know how it goes.
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Old 11-05-2011, 03:38 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BallinCrew10
The problem you'll have putting the skimmer on the return side is microbubbles being pumped into your DT. You could always just not run a skimmer. Put a DSB, LR, macro in your fuge and call it a day.
Can someone tell me what DSB is?
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Old 11-05-2011, 03:54 AM   #8
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Deep sand bed. Utilizes anaerobic bacteria to help the nitrogen cycle.
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Old 11-05-2011, 04:14 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BallinCrew10
Deep sand bed. Utilizes anaerobic bacteria to help the nitrogen cycle.
What is considered deep?
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Old 11-05-2011, 04:16 AM   #10
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I believe 4-6+ inches. I could be wrong but I think its somewhere in that range.
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