Dewd Tank - Early stages

Discussion in 'Medium Tanks' started by Dewd, 14 Aug 2012.

  1. Dewd

    Dewd

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    So, I am starting to plan my new tank.

    It will probably only start to happen in about a year's time, but I want to start getting the ideas flowing.

    Display
    I have always liked the tall displays, like the ones they had in the Quicksilver shops. I am aware of the problems associated with doing maintenance in them because of the depth being longer than your arm.

    I'm thinking 600 x 600mm square x 900mm high.

    The tank will sit in the corner of a room, so will have two sides visible.

    Stand
    A simple 50 x 50mm angle iron stand galvanised and powdercoated will do.

    Lighting
    I'm 99% sold on the lighting being LED

    Sump etc
    This is where it gets interesting.

    I do not want a sump under the tank. In my experience, they are just dirty wet spaces that you can never get into to work properly and all you kit down there is usually compromised by space. Also with the tall tank, I would like to have it a little lower than most to make it easier to get into the top. This means even less space underneath.

    I want to put 3 polybins outside the house under their own shelter to house all the skimmers, DSB, Live rock, return pump, ATO etc etc. If I spill any water while doing a water change, I just hose the area down. water changes can make the odd splash without my wife hovering over me with a cloth to wipe the lounge floor.

    PROBLEM - the ideal place for this "sump room" is about 4m below the display tank. I first need to find a return pump capable of handling a head of 4m and still having at least 5000lpH capacity without putting unreasonable strain on it. A swimming pool pump is not an option.

    General
    I plan to DIY as much as I can. I have built DIY skimmers, Kalk reactors and other bits before and it is no big deal to me. The skimmer will be DIY, 300mmm diameter (not clear though) and about 1m high to allow long contact time and because space is not an issue (I also have access to the PVC) Similar for the kalk dosing. Things will be practical, overengineered, simple and will work. They will not necessarily be pretty.

    Controllers
    I would like something like the Reef Angel that I can monitor everything on my Android phone or Tablet

    So, come on, tell me where I'm going wrong with this :)
     
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  3. Gesiggie

    Gesiggie Challenge accepted

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    I am guessing that the 4m drop is due to a 2nd floor placement in the house? If that is the case, keep in mind that the floor should be able to handle the weight, and also, it might be better to design your stand to rather have the legs also as a frame, rather than 4 individual points of pressure on the floor.
     
  4. Singularity

    Singularity Hmmm amper!

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    Rather make it 900x900 and 600 high, 900 high will be a mission to do anything in !
     
  5. Gesiggie

    Gesiggie Challenge accepted

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    With these dimensions he might have a mission to get it into the house!
     
  6. RiaanP

    RiaanP Moderator

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    Better to do proper planning

    First, where are you? Gauteng was cold this last week. The shelter needs proper insulation and ventilation. Somehow those 2 requirements contradict each other.

    Look at Reeflow Barracuda pump. Got the flow and head at 165W (if I remember correctly)

    Some guys do that, but not a lot of DIY skimmers make it to the end of the day. Acrylic tube is expensive. Rather check the for sale section for nice second hand skimmer. If you do it, then well done.

    Agree. 900 high and you need goggles and snorkels just to place something on the bottom. If you do lower the stand a lot, it could help. Deepest normally are about 800mm deep, and even that is an mission. But then again, a 900 cube standing in the corner of a room, you will not be able to reach the back corner anyway.
     
  7. Jayceew

    Jayceew

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    What type of wattage are you lookig at with your LED lighting, 900 is quite deep to get nice penetration. Although you did mention you might want to build a tower type of aquascape so you can move a lot of the corals higher up.
     
  8. Ayoob

    Ayoob

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    Dude that is a killer height on such a cube. Would stay away from that Because lighting will cost a lot more, working inside becomes problem and glass thickness.
     
  9. Dewd

    Dewd Thread Starter

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    The reason for this fred.


    Durban. One of my other reasons for putting the sump outside is to use geothermal for heating / cooling. I plan to bury 100m of thin-wall irrigation tubing in a trench around the garden. Circulating the water through this should help keep the water warmer in the cold and cooler in the heat. It will need to be supplemented with heaters in winter, but should suffice to keep it cool in the summer.

    One of the reasons behind having the relatively small display tank and probably another 2000+ litres in the sump is to have a larger, more stable system, able to support what will appear to be a heavily stocked display tank.


    Will look into that.


    Being a Civil Engineer, I have a basic understanding of hydraulics as they pertain to marine reefkeeping. Skimmers are VERY simple mechanisms. The difficult part of designing and building a skimmer is in the keeping it compact (we're back to the reason I don't want this sh!t under the tank) A large, simple (ugly) skimmer can easily be as effective and efficient is a beautiful, small one as long as the basic design principals are adhered to. As I said before, I've done it before, and am prepared to do it again.


    I've thought long and hard about having the deeper tank. Especially after seeing a number of tanks built like this, it is something I really want. Even in my old 2mx600x600 tank, there were areas I could not reach and had to resort to a set of Eheim tongs. A slightly deeper tank will just be a little more challenging, but I realise that going into this and will still give it much thought before I pull the trigger on getting the tank built.

    I want the aquascaping to be similar to a reef wall drop-off - allowing the corals to grow outward similar to the way they do in nature.
     
  10. Dewd

    Dewd Thread Starter

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    I don't have the space for 900x900. Max I could go is 750x750mm.
     
  11. Dewd

    Dewd Thread Starter

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    I'm not sure on wattage, but the priliminary investigation I have done seems to indicate that this kind of depth penetration can be achieved with narrower lenses. It is still early days, and I'm sure the technology will have changed and progressed by the time I get around to actually doing this.
     
  12. Dewd

    Dewd Thread Starter

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    Correct on all accounts.

    I mentioned it above, but I am a Civil Engineer, and did the alterations where the tank will stand myself with the idea of placing a tank there at some stage. I am happy that the floor there can bear the load of a "relatively" small tank like I plan to have.
     
  13. Dewd

    Dewd Thread Starter

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    In addition to all above, I have not mentioned stocking.

    I want mainly LPS and soft corals. I am a huge fan of Zooanthids and plan to collect as many varieties as possible. One or two of the easy SPS colonies will invariably find their way in like the plating Montiporas, but only when things are stable and happy and they will not be the focus of the tank by any means.

    Going to need a vegetarian (or two) to keep the greenery in check so that means a tang of sorts.

    I want minimal gravel on the tank bottom, but remember seeing a tank build where they planned to have Green Star Polyps cover as much of the bottom as possible. I really like that idea and was thinking about encouraging that as well as some Zoos to cover the bottom. Just siphon up more gravel as they spread out until there is virtually no gravel left.
     
  14. Dewd

    Dewd Thread Starter

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    We don't get into this hobby because it's cheap.

    There is a saying amongst Landcruiser drivers, and it goes like this " If you have to ask what the fuel consumption is, a Landcruiser is not for you."

    If we wanted cheap, we would choose power walking or birdwatching without the bino's.
     
  15. vincentputter

    vincentputter I love Nayn cat!

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    Tagging along......
     
  16. RiaanP

    RiaanP Moderator

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    Durban, OK so outside temperature is a lot better than us here in Gauteng. Not to worried about the outside shelter / shed.

    Talk to @brentv he got his display tank outside on his stoep. Confirm with him temperature issues, if any. He is south of Durban.


    Talk to @seank
    he is in Richardsbay. He got a 10000L JoJo tank connected to his system. Last he had some parameter issues and for some reason struggled more to keep everything in line. Must be due to the volume in relation to the amount of whatever additives needed. He use NSW.

    On a 600 cube with height of 900, you cannot use 10mm glass. Have to go up on the thickness. That does have an impact in the cost of the glass. That is about a 300L system. Rather go up to a 750 cube as you mentioned. Then you end up just shy of 500L display, so much more room for activities. And 750 front to back will give you that much more space for your vertical drop at the back. Rockwork wall of just 30cm wide, will take up half of your 600 cube. 750 will give you 150 more open space. Anyway the rockwork will end up wider than 300 at the bottom section. And do not forget detritus settlement behind the rockwork due to insufficient flow.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: 26 Nov 2015
  17. seank

    seank

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    How does one know which person is an Engineer in a room full of people???

    Cause he will tell you so....

    :lol: :lol:

    Just an Engineer joke amongst friends :)
     
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