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Old 12-30-2003, 11:14 AM   #1
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Sump Question

Hello all,
I have had a 55 gallon FOWLR tank up and running for over two years now. Recently, I placed my first soft coral (well sort of - just mushrooms) in the tank with success. As you know, this hobby is addictive so now I wanting to slowly step up to a reef tank. BTW, there are 75 lbs. or LR in the tank.

I have already increased the lighting (VHO) and my obvious next step is to get rid of my canister filter and plumb in a sump. I am thinking of doing this with a 20 gallon tank and need some advice on setup. I know I will need an hang on overflow and return pump. But, from there I am little confused as I read a lot of conflicting information on this topic.

Does anyone have any general advice on this topic?
Can I do this w/o drilling holes in the sump tank if I use a internal (submersible) pump?
Do I need baffles in the sump to place filter media (chemipure, etc.)?
Do I need live sand or live rock in the sump (if so how much)?
Is PVC or flexible tubing recommended for the plumbing?

Any advice would be great!
Thanks
Al
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Old 12-30-2003, 12:44 PM   #2
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Re: Sump Question

Quote:
Originally Posted by awilds
Does anyone have any general advice on this topic?
we have a brief article on sumps that might give you a little more general information.

Quote:
Originally Posted by awilds
Can I do this w/o drilling holes in the sump tank if I use a internal (submersible) pump?
Yes, easily.

Quote:
Originally Posted by awilds
Do I need baffles in the sump to place filter media (chemipure, etc.)?
Do I need live sand or live rock in the sump (if so how much)?
Is PVC or flexible tubing recommended for the plumbing?
Baffles help most in preventing micro-bubbles from skimmers etc from entering your return pump. Filter media isn't really necessary and will likely contribute to nitrate levels. adding LS or LR will change your sump into a refugium ( a good thing) but will then require some lighting, NO at least. The purpose of adding LR and LS is to give additional filtering capabilities to your system. You can also place some Macro-Algaes in the fuge to absorb excess nutrients to keep nuisance algaes from growing in the display tank.

HTH

And most importantly, Welcome to Aquarium Advice
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Old 12-30-2003, 12:56 PM   #3
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Filter media isn't really necessary and will likely contribute to nitrate levels.
Billy, I'm using a converted wet/dry for my sump. There is a foam block between the two sides that I have not removed. My nitrates are never below 5 but have been in the 20025 range recently. Do you think removing the foam block might help?

Cmor
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Old 12-30-2003, 01:21 PM   #4
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You could remove and clean the foam block. That will help with any nitrates that might be collecting in the foam.

From the overflow you would plumb down to the sump with soft tubing or hard pvc. From the return pump you would plumb back up to the tank and plumb one or two returns with pvc. What you put in the sump can be up to you but most use it for their heaters, skimmer, etc.
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Old 12-30-2003, 01:23 PM   #5
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nitrate levels are typically increased due to two factors. Filter media with hight water flow (such as sponges, bio-balls etc) and not enough anarobic zones (such as a DSB or dense LR)

levels of 20-25 aren't too bad, I would doubt your sponge (unless very large) is the real cause. Consider how much DSB or LR you have in your system and wether or not you using other filter media such as Bio-Balls.
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Old 12-30-2003, 01:31 PM   #6
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Guess it's time to remove and clean the foam block. I have a 6"-8" DSB in a 125 with 145# of LR (the 50# of base I started with is now covered). The bio balls were removed right after the tank was set up (last February).
I'm also thinking of adding another 25# of LR next month.

Thanks,
Cmor
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