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Old 04-25-2011, 02:05 PM   #1
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scottayy's cheap DIY sump thread

Hey Guys,

I'm going to build me a sump. I think it sounds like a fun, easy, and practical DIY project. I'm also going to do it cheap (adds to the funness). Going to see how cheap I can do it while still being very effective.

I'll update this original post with pictures as I go along.

Equipment



Skimmer (lip cut off of top of sides of 3 qt containter, plus teeth cut)



Added the top for stability (these containers were quite flimsy) and put in a hole for the siphon tube:



Overflow box, with DIY bulkhead, pvc pipe, and elbow. Hole cut in top for siphon tube and a hole for air relief.



Box where water will come in. It will be gravity fed through a cut filter cartridge or a sponge or something.




.. Continued in post 2 (8 image limit)
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Old 04-25-2011, 02:07 PM   #2
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Sump containers hooked together



Equipment list and pricing
-------------------------------
3 x 31 quart plastic bins - $20.91 (could've got this cheaper, lowes was out of what I wanted)
3 x 3 quart plastic bins - $3.51
2 x 5' 3/4" pvc pipe - $2.64 (again, could've got this cheaper, but lowes was out of $1.98 10' pipes)
2 x 3/4" female bushings - $0.66
2 x 3/4" male bushings - $0.66
3 x 3/4" elbows - $1.02
silicone sealant - $3.98
rubber siphon tube - $2.62

Total: $36.45
x 0.07 sales tax
-------------------
$38.90




My first question would be the size of the PVC pipe to use. I have a 55 gallon tank, and I read that I'll want to turn it over about 10 times per hour.

According to this I'll want to be at about 1/2" to 3/4".

I was thinking about getting the 1/2" so the flow will be a little lower than 10x per hour.

Thoughts on pipe size?
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Old 04-25-2011, 02:15 PM   #3
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Just following wanna see how this comes out!
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Old 04-25-2011, 02:15 PM   #4
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Is your tank drilled, or are you using a siphon overflow? If it is drilled or a "reef ready" tank, then I'd go with 1 to 1.5 PVC because your return pump will dictate the amount of flow through the sump. If it's a siphon then someone else will need to chime in - because you'll have to synch your siphon with your return pump. That was too much trouble for me so I drilled my tank.
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Old 04-25-2011, 02:20 PM   #5
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My tank is already running and established. I'm going to do the siphon method.
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Old 04-25-2011, 02:21 PM   #6
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::gracefully bows out::
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Old 04-25-2011, 03:37 PM   #7
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1/2" pipe takes 420gph,3/4" takes 660gph,As tjm has stated you need to match your pipework to your overflow box and your pump to the overflow box.So if you do use 1/2" then 420gph is the maximum pump flow including head loss on the pump.make sure the overflow box can take just slightly more than 420(maybe 450gph)or you can run into problems.
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Old 04-25-2011, 03:39 PM   #8
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Umm what is head loss? Thanks, I'm along for the ride here LOL
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Old 04-25-2011, 03:49 PM   #9
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I'm assuming head loss is where the water slows such as hitting an elbow and flowing through the sump.

The gallons per hour would be if it were flowing through a straight pipe, so loss occurs where it slows.

I got my equipment (most of it). I think the cheapEST part is out of this (though it will still be cheap).

I saw 6 gallon containers for $3.98 online. The store only had 7 gallon containers for $6.98 I got 3 of them so that part was $21.. but on the bright side, 21 gallon sump!

Pictures soon
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Old 04-25-2011, 04:20 PM   #10
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Updated with picture of equipment plus pricing. Still don't have all of the parts (like suction cups).

On a side note, what can I use to stick the HOB box to the back of the tank? The background will be in the way.
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Old 04-25-2011, 04:41 PM   #11
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head loss is the amount of height the pump has to pump to get the water to the dt,it will say in the pump manual what the head loss is at different heights,eg.450ghp pump pumping up 3'= 380gph output to dt head loss of 70gph
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Old 04-25-2011, 06:35 PM   #12
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OK, i made the skimmer, pics in original post.

I cut the lips off the container and lid and cut teeth. I had to silicone on the lid of the container for stability because it was quite flimsy. I will probably either get a clear tube or hide this with rocks as the red is quite ugly LOL.
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Old 04-25-2011, 06:38 PM   #13
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Nice. You are making some real progress. keep the pcitures coming!
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Old 04-25-2011, 06:43 PM   #14
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Following along also! I will most likely be making one this summer too.
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Old 04-25-2011, 07:38 PM   #15
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Thanks guys. Feel free to make suggestions or tell me if I'm doing anything wrong. I'm just doing what i think is right.

Added picture of overflow box. I made a DIY bulkhead with 2 3/4" bushings and silicone around the edges. Then there's a piece of pvc pipe with an elbow. I have a hole cut in the top for the siphon tubing and another hole for air relief.

These containers may be too small.. we'll have to see. I think as long as it is draining and I have the siphon flow adjusted right it will be ok.

I still don't have an idea for hanging the overflow box on the back of the tank. I could use suction cups but that will look awful cutting through the background.

I'm done until tomorrow... tiring day
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Old 04-25-2011, 10:26 PM   #16
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So here's how I was thinking of doing the sump containers.. please forgive my MS Paint skills.



Is there anything else I could/should have in there? Is the order OK?
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Old 04-26-2011, 02:30 AM   #17
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could your suction cups not stick to the background? I've never tried anything to stick to it so I'm curious. The only other option I could think of is to attach the two containers like overflow boxes sold by manufacturers
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Old 04-26-2011, 06:06 AM   #18
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Awesome thread! Was just getting ready to start building a sump for my main tank. Never done one before so I'm along for the ride

That link to the GPH rating of PVC is awesome, was going to ask about that but problem solved!
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Old 04-26-2011, 09:15 AM   #19
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Following. Looks good! I'm not a HOB person, but I'd be afraid of anything holding water that's suction cupped to my tank. Then again, I have no experience with anything HOB...
I'll be following this! Looks pretty good. I'll have to see how it ends up in the end. I may steal some ideas from you :P
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Old 04-26-2011, 09:17 AM   #20
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This is quite the learning thread. lol Scott better keep us updated.
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