Danimal's first tank!

Discussion in 'Medium Tanks' started by danimal, 21 Jul 2009.

  1. danimal

    danimal

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    Hi all

    After 5 years of enviously checking out my mates' FO tank, I finally have the opportunity to begin my own adventure!

    Am in the preperation stages at present, I want to do this thing properly! My aim with this thread is to document all my progress from scratch, and to use it to acquire knowledge , advice etc as I reach and surmount all the challenges ahead, so any advice, tips, constructive criticism are much appreciated!

    Will post sketches of plans soon.
     
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  3. Warr7207

    Warr7207

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    What are your ideas ?
     
  4. danimal

    danimal Thread Starter

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    [​IMG][​IMG]OK here are the plans:

    Display tank 1100 x 500 x 500 - 275l
    Sump 700 long x 450 wide x 400 high - 126l

    Here's some sketches:
     
  5. danimal

    danimal Thread Starter

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    woops sorry having a bit of trouble with the uploader. anyway I'm getting the stand made out of square tubing, sent it off yesterday to get welded. going to do some nice wood panelling so it looks like a cupboard on the bottom, and will do a nice roof/lightfixture thing at the top. once i have the stand (hopefully by the weekend) I will get the glass done. still trying to decide on all the hardware I need!
     
  6. Tridan

    Tridan

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    Sounds good, are you going to galvanize or hammer rite the stand?
     
  7. danimal

    danimal Thread Starter

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  8. Mekaeel

    Mekaeel Moderator MASA Contributor

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    Looks good! What is the little box in the sump for?
     
  9. danimal

    danimal Thread Starter

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    drain box coming from the display tank, will fill with some small pieces of live rock to help break up bubbles. from left to right will be skimmer section, refugium and return. what do you guys think?
     
  10. inflames

    inflames

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    Hi Danimal,

    Looks like a nice design! :thumbup:I would try and go a little bigger in lenght in your sump. I have a 4 foot DT 1220 x 450 x 450 and a similar size sump as what you have here. My sump is just 750 in lenght (5cm longer than your proposed) I wish in hind site that I had gone a little bigger to accomodate a bigger (not deeper) DSB. I would also advise making the return pump section only big enough for the pump! I also made mine to big and have not used the space optimally! Try fit as big a DSB as possible and decide if you gonna have an in sump skimmer or external. I have an external skimmer and just the pump sits in my 1st chamber...takes allot of space and makes difficult to add almost any thing to the 1st chamber:(! Bear in mind if you can make your sump extra 10 or 15 cm long and make the return chamber only big enough to accomodate only the return pump...you couls possibly almost double the foot print the of your DSB. This will provide for much better filtration and less headaches long term!

    Hope this helps!:p
     
  11. Neil H

    Neil H Moderator MASA Contributor

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    first off welcome!

    May i humbly make some suggestions.......

    1. Get rid of that down tube in the front of your stand, it will get in your way ... if you are worried about structural strength the double up on the horizontal in the front.

    2. make your sump as big as possible, i suggest at least 90cm long

    3. build the sump yourself (I promise it really is not that hard;))... and custom design it better.... I would have it 90x45 x38
    loose one of the baffles in the front, you dont need 3, 2 will be fine, add one to the other side if you feel the need. the longer the sump the less hassles with bubbles.

    for building the sump I suggest the following

    build a shell 90x45x38 (LWH)

    Portion off the back 10-12cm with one big pane of glass and use this as an RO resovior for an auto top off system (this should hold 30 odd liters.... which will last you 3 or 4 days depending on evaporation rates.

    next, place your skimmer one end and your pump the other in the remaining chamber, then figure out the minimum area you need to operate both at each end , and start with the baffles there. I would bank on at least a TS2 skimmer for your system, so keep that in mind

    Now you have a lekker sump with the minimum operational area for the skimmer and pump, the biggest DSB you can and a RO chamber .... sorted
     
  12. Neil H

    Neil H Moderator MASA Contributor

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    Ok so i am avoiding work ...........

    this is what i am suggesting

    [​IMG]
     
  13. danimal

    danimal Thread Starter

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    awesome, thanks for the advice! I will be building it myself, but I haven't got the glass yet so the mods aren't a problem.

    Good idea, would be much better at the back :thumbup:

    I think I'll also go for the added 20cm... 70cm was just a rough guess at how much room I would need for other miscellaneous equipment next to the sump (such as an auto top-up bucket) but if I include the top-up in the sump it'll sort out a lot of hassles!
     
  14. danimal

    danimal Thread Starter

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    OK next question: in total my system should hold 430 odd liters. What sort of return pump should I look at? And what sorta sizes are they? I know I should aim for a 10x turnover per hour.

    Also, what skimmer should I aim at? I know its function, but nothing about different brands, pricing ranges, disadvantages/advantages etc. My LFS guy wasn't very helpful!
     
  15. danimal

    danimal Thread Starter

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    Oh and Neil, what is that horizontal bit on the last baffle on the right?

    Lol, the reason I had put so many in was because my mate has a huge problem with microbubbles, mostly cuz of dodgy baffle design :lol:
     
  16. Neil H

    Neil H Moderator MASA Contributor

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    pump is not an esay answer.

    I think 10x is too much and would aim at 3 to 4 times max

    you need to work out the "head" i.e. the height the pump needs to pump the water ..... your sump vol will be about 100L, you need a pump that will pump 300 to 400L an hour at a head of xcm (prob about 1.5m in your case).... you will find a graph on the side of the pump box and can calculate it on this. remember that each bend in the pipe also reduces the pumps capacity .... you will have 2 or 3 elbows in the pipe.... take that into account .... and up it to about 600 or 650L a hour at your head

    Skimmer i would reccommend a TS2 but that is because that is what i use, and am not familiar with other brands, ask one of our sponsors for a price on that and similar skimmers, i know dorry has a 10% online discount this month, and they ship country wide. Be very wary of advice given by your LFS ... remember they are after a profit... at MASA we have nothing to gain by what you buy !
     
  17. Neil H

    Neil H Moderator MASA Contributor

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    its just a deflection plate to slow the water done and reduce noise.... not sure how effective it is, but in my sump which is pretty much the same design ( i think there is a pic on my thread under members systems - large tanks - neil's 1.2m reef)

    I believe with a good length of sump and a slow turn over of 3 or 4 times an hour then micro bubbles whould not be a problem.... running chaeto on top of the DSB is also a big help..... Hell i have two Airstones sitting above my DSB to up my oxygen levels ..... and after the chaeto there is bugger all bubbles in the water and nothing in the DT
     
  18. danimal

    danimal Thread Starter

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    cool, just been browsing through your thread - awesome tank! I think I will do a bit more research on pumps and skimmers but decide before I get the glass, that way I can do the minimal area thing so the DSB can be big:)
     
  19. danimal

    danimal Thread Starter

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    what's the best way to set up a DSB? get some from the beach, or get a cupful from somewhere and seed some playsand?
     
  20. Neil H

    Neil H Moderator MASA Contributor

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    well thats a matter of opinion....I used reggies playsand and seeded it with cups from other reefers here in JHB and also with a variety of Live rock. there are many guys who have used beach sand .... but be very carefull where you collect it.... it must be below the spring low tide mark and it must be pollutant free .... no easy task.... for more into on sand and rock have a look at the thread under biological filtration.... it is one of the sticky threads in that section.... it will give you a good idea of rock and sand in the maring hobby !

    Thanks for the compliment

    the more research you do now the happier your reefing will be....
     
  21. danimal

    danimal Thread Starter

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    guys I have to ask - been reading up on Durso standpipes; I understand the concept but how does it reprime itself after a power outage? It seems that if power goes out the level in the overflow will go frain out until the water is below the inlet... how then does the siphon be recreated when power comes back on, as there is now air in the pipe...?
     
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