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Old 08-18-2011, 07:50 AM   #1
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New to all this - does my setup look OK?

Hi All,

First off an enormous thank you to the hundreds of posters/experts on here who have, over the past few months, guided this newbie from total ignorance to a very basic (and probably quite dangerous) level of understanding. Really is much appreciated.

And now to test what, I think, I have learned..

Firstly - I am an expat now living in China (I'm English) and as such getting hold of all the kit you talk about is pretty difficult (expensive!) therefore I have had to go native and use Chinese brands (immediate alarm bells, I'm sure)

Secondly the tank I have was given to me by a friend who was returning to America. I can only assume the stand was designed for a freshwater tank and as such I have had to bodge it all together to make it suitable for a FOWLR setup.

I have attached a diagram of my setup as well as a photo.

The sump (approx 25g) and the refrugium are both plastic food containers and I have not put any baffles in. Is this going to cause me problems? What is so bad about bubbles that they need to be trapped?

Can the output of the protein skimmer just be dumped back into the general sump or do I need to separate it from the general area?

Can any of you see any glaring errors with my plan? I am at a stage now where I have all the bits and am about to start plumbing it all in and now is the time to make sure I have understood what is needed.


Thanks again and looking forward to hearing your advice,
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Old 08-18-2011, 08:00 AM   #2
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oh yeah - one more thing. Does the output from the refrugium need to be filtered (DIY filter - Protein Skimmer) or should it go straight back into the display tank?
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Old 08-18-2011, 11:20 AM   #3
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If the output of the protein skimmer is the brown stuff in the collection cup dumping it back into the water would just introduce it into the system again. Wash it out in a bathtub or something whenever needed. You can run the fuge back into the tank or through the sump but it doesnt really matter. If you dont have tangs watch out because caulerpa and chaeto will spread VERY quickly. The tangs will eat that. The more filtration the better so get as much as you can!!! Hope this helps, and good luck with your setup.
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Old 08-18-2011, 01:15 PM   #4
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Thanks Crister,

When I said protein skimmer output I meant the flow of water from the skimmer as opposed to the brown sutff - sorry for being vague. Is it OK to have the flow of water coming out of the skimmer feed directly into the general sump?
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Old 08-18-2011, 01:31 PM   #5
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Yes, as long as they (the skimmer and return pump) are in the same compartment. You don't want the skimmer pumping water out of that compartment faster than it gets filled by the tank overflows.
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Old 08-18-2011, 05:06 PM   #6
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I have my flow go right into the chamber with my return pump. You should be good.
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Old 08-18-2011, 05:08 PM   #7
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Oh and the bubbles can seriously stress fish out. My skimmer came with a bubble difuser and then I wrapped 3 socks around it (make sure you wash the socks in a bathtub to get detergent out) and voila, no more bubbles. Hope this helps.
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Old 08-18-2011, 10:03 PM   #8
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OK - good to know. Thanks.

Am now firing up my drill and attempting the dreaded tank drilling.

Finger crossed. Slowly does it......
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Old 08-18-2011, 10:45 PM   #9
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From what it looks like you have the skimmer downstream of the fuge if that's the case I believe you want it the other way around
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Old 08-19-2011, 12:31 AM   #10
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yea u dont want the skimmer suck in all them copepods from the fuge witch helps feed your tank. atleast thats what i read
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