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Old 07-23-2010, 03:30 AM   #1
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Need help with 10g sump build

Hi all,

Currently I have an eheim canister filter and I'm finding a lot of people saying sumps are better. Being a newbie to SW, I got convinced at the LFS to buy an eheim canister filter. It actually cleans REALLY well, but I don't want to deal with the constant cleaning to avoid the relentless nitrates.

So, for my 30g reef tank (recently cycled last week, now home to two clownfish, a team of blue legged hermits and 20lbs or LR) I'd like to get a 10G sump tank

I found this one here: Reef Aquarium Filtration: Eshopps Reef Sumps

But sump design and the enormous variety of pumps, overflow boxes and tubes are really confusing me.

Can I get some equipment recommendations for this entire build to work? I also need a proteim skimmer recommendation to fit this sump.

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Old 07-23-2010, 10:03 AM   #2
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First of all, a sump is not a replacement for a cannister filter. A sump is a place to increase water volume, hide equipment (heaters, protein skimmers, thermometers, etc.).

Sumps can also house some GAC (carbon), poly filters, other chemical bags (ChemiPure) etc.

LR in quantities of 1 - 2 pounds per gallon of tank volume give you the surface area to house the beneficial bacteria that would normally be in the cannister fiter. Unlike the cannister filter, you will not lose these bacteria when cleaning the filter.

For NitrAte export you need to add some macro alage, a/o do PWCs religiously. PWC's will keep nitrates in check even with a cannister filter.

You can get a hang on PS too.

Your tank right now is a FOWLR. You say reef, so tell us what you plan to add in the way of corals and what lighting you currently have.

I would reccomend that you give yourself and yoru tank at least 6 months to mature before adding any corals. The tank needs to mature and you need to learn how to care for the tank and the inhabitants.

Keep reading the threads and the articles on the forum.

As for your sump build, Eshopps also makes overflow boxes. You will need one of those to get the water from the tank to the sump, and a pump sized to the overflow to return the water to the tank. Read the SUMPS article on this site. It may explain alot.

Good luck.
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Old 07-23-2010, 10:15 AM   #3
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Cmor has some great points there. Start doing a bunch of reading on everything you can. Melevsreef.com is a good place to find literature and sump designs.
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Old 07-23-2010, 12:10 PM   #4
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Thanks for the advice. I really appreciate it

I've actually read a bunch of the articles on sumps already, so I know how it works and whats involved at an early stage, I just needed some recommendations on specific items such as which pump I should purchase for the sump. I also need a protein skimmer recommendation for the sump, there are quite a few choices and all of them claim to be the best.

I called it a reef tank but right now its FOWLR. I'm waiting several months to add coral. Right now I have a Wavepoint High Output 36" T5 156w (4 bulbs) as light source. I'm planning to add some easier to manage corals such as frogspawns, star polyps and feather dusters but I'm not at that point yet.

Currently with the eheim canister, I'm doing 30-40% water changes every 1-2 weeks. My water parameters have been solid stable for the last week with the following:

Ph: 8.3
Ammonia: 0
Nitrites: 0
Nitrates: <5
salinity: 1.025

The concern with the eheim canister was for the long road, and reading about the nitrate problems after several months, trying to fix that before it happens down the road. I know it will not replace PWC and maintenance

thanks
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Old 07-23-2010, 12:43 PM   #5
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Props for doing your research! Sorry we just assume people haven't sometimes, because the blatant majority don't.

Generally for a reef you are looking to turn over your DT volume 12x-15x an hour. So for a pump you are looking for 250-400 gallons per hour, depending on how much flow you want. Remember to take into account height loss on your pump, how far below the pump will sit from the input into the tank. Most manufacturers will have a chart showing this.
Danner Supreme Mag-Drive Aquarium Water Pump/Powerhead

Also with skimmers, I like to have one that is way too big for my tank, for 1| can't hurt to over skim the tank (usually) 2| A nice skimmer isnt cheap, and if you ever upgrade tank sizes, its better to buy once and use throughout several tanks.
I would recommend ASM skimmers and Octopus.
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