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Old 04-10-2003, 12:19 AM   #1
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DIY vs Buying a Sump

I'm going to be starting up a new tank this summer. I was looking at adding a sump. I was thinking about a DIY sump. I have been looking around for plans and things. I didn't really find any I liked. The tank is going to be a 40G (36"x18x13). The reason I want the sump is to hide everything like the heater, skimmer and all that. Also to provide more water volume to my system. I have been pricing sumps and the ones I have seen are all over 100 bucks. I was just wondering how much a DIY could cost me. So if you made a sump i would appreciate an estimate on the cost and the dificulty of building one, or if you bought one how much it was and how good it works. I'm on a tight budget so I NEED to make the best buy for my buck. As always thanks for helping out! :P
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Old 04-10-2003, 09:36 AM   #2
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In real simple terms a sump is basicly a storage device for your skimmer and heater and additional water capacity.

You could go real cheap on your sump by getting a plastic tub from walmart, get some PVC from Lowes.

THen your big ticket items are your sump pump and your overflow.
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Old 04-10-2003, 09:54 AM   #3
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I have seen several DIY overflows. Like using 2 Lee's specimen containers. Are they reliable?? Or is that something you should just spend some money on?
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Old 04-10-2003, 10:19 AM   #4
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Specimen containers will work but they are MUCH thinner and more brittle than commercial overflows. A DIY would work for a while, maybe indefinitely. Depends on how much risk you can live with. All my tanks are on ground floors (cement under the carpet). If I get a leak it soaks the carpet but doesn't go through the floor. Would a major catastrophe ruin your day or ruin your life? A commercial overflow would give you peice of mind but a DIY is CHEAP.
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Old 04-10-2003, 12:21 PM   #5
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I bought a used Amiracle from Ebay for $106 - I house 2 heaters, my Protein Skimmer, a mag7 pump... I have a bulkhead on one end to a Quiet One pump... fitted with two ball valves to control flow...

In retrospect I would have made another bulhead on the Mag7 side to reduce the heat of the Mag7... it raised my temp 1 degree F.

The other alternative is a 20 gallon High tank... They were going to charge me 75 for the tank and labor including a bulhead and ball valve..
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Old 04-10-2003, 12:21 PM   #6
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You can build an overflow and sump that is just as good as commercial IF you have a table saw, some acrylic glue, a router table, and some experience working with acrylic. Like Mark said, I'd be scared of the design using the Lee containers. We break about two of those things every day at the store. If you're not willing to risk the mess in the floor, I'd go with the commercial overflow. If you have all the needed tools to work with the acrylic, you might start making some stuff that won't wet the house if it doesn't go well.
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Old 04-10-2003, 01:59 PM   #7
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Well I dont really have much for tools. I have a friend who may be able to help if I do make one. I'm gonna start looking for used stuff I guess. Anyone have any??
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Old 04-10-2003, 02:27 PM   #8
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You might check on E-bay and Aquabid for used equip. We might have something at the store...I'll look. The storage room there is pretty scary!
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Old 04-10-2003, 09:55 PM   #9
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Hi guys. Ryan; I would suggest for you to check out eshopps on ebay. I just received my dual overflow from them. Guy I dealt with name is Louie, email is eshopps@hotmail.com. He is a really nice guy, and easy to deal with. I found him on ebay, but purchased my overflow directly from him. His prices are really reasonable. If you have problems getting through to him let me know, and I'll see what I can do to help. He always responds to my emails right away.
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Old 04-10-2003, 11:04 PM   #10
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I have a 20 gallon tank just sitting around. I was thinking of using that to make the sump. I'm drawing up some plans for it now. I think I would rather find a good deal on one then make one.
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