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Old 09-08-2008, 02:33 PM   #1
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Sump Question

I've been looking for a new tank for my Cichlids, went as far as to drive 200+ miles to look at a tank on craigslist. The tank/stand/canopy were listed as like new condition, and the seller reassured me of such on the phone. Of course the pictures made it look like new as well.

When I got there, the hinges were rusted, the inside of the doors were suffering from wood damage. The floor of in stand was the same way. My thoughts instantly went to the sump on this drilled tank. Is this normal? Or was there possibly something else going on here?

Even with my worries I am still seriously considering a sump setup for my cichlids, as they're pretty messy, and I think this would ease the maintenance a bit. I am also considering running reverse flow plates to keep the crushed coral spotless. Any other suggestions?



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Old 09-10-2008, 12:51 AM   #2
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Depends on what the stand is made of. If it is particle board, I would not trust it at all. If it was a home built, it might be poorly constructed/designed. <Rust on hinges indicates use of inferior hardware ... you would want solid brass or stainless steel hardware in wet environment.>

A solid wood stand should stand up to humidity as long as it is well sealed. I built my stand with a totally open back so there is no humidity build up. My sump is covered to minimize evaporation. And I sealed all wood surfaces (inside & out, and all hidden surfaces except for the glue joints) with 3 coats of polyurethane. I have spilled water in the stand & had minor leaks & drips but the stand showed no sign of damage.

Some people will go an extra step & seal with marine spar (an epoxy finish). This is used in boat building & make wooden boats impervious to salt water. Since I have a FW setup, I didn't go to that extreme.
80 gal FW with 30 gal DIY wet/dry/sump.
9 fancy golds, 1 hillstream loaches, 1 rubber-lip pleco (C. thomasi), 3 SAEs, small school of white cloud minnows, planted.
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