Diy overflow box diagram - help needed

Discussion in 'Anything DIY Related' started by OCELLARIS, 30 Jul 2008.

  1. OCELLARIS

    OCELLARIS

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    hi guys


    [​IMG]

    i have a diagram of a friend who had emailed me a sketch of an overflow box
    that he has and is currently using it on his reef tank, it is a fail safe siphon so when the power is out the siphon stops and when the power is back up it starts again
    this is due to the T-piece pipe and water level that allows it to do so...

    unfortunately he did not give me instructions on how to go about doing it or even
    explain what the diagram consists of or where is each piece, wheter they in the tank and what goes down to the sump ect... he managed to email this to me before their emailing systems bombed out on him so i have no contact with him :(

    could some one please help me with explaining it from what they see from their experience, my friend works for a company that specializes in building of marine tanks, equipment for tanks ect...
     
    Last edited by a moderator: 30 Jul 2008
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  3. Alan

    Alan Admin MASA Contributor

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    Damn that looks messy, there is a better way of doing it i must just find the diagram, stick around it was from a few years back, may take some time.
     
  4. Shaun

    Shaun Retired Moderator

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    Hi OCELLARIS Hope you don't mind, put the link as a pic.
     
  5. Alan

    Alan Admin MASA Contributor

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  6. OCELLARIS

    OCELLARIS Thread Starter

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    hi alan thanx alot, these would help me better
     
  7. OCELLARIS

    OCELLARIS Thread Starter

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    hi there thalion

    thank you, infact i have been battling to get that picture posted
    i tried so many ways until i finally had to get the url link for it and had to even get the pic recoded, there seems to be a problem with some of my functions on this site so im like restricted , like instant email notifications,posting pic ect...

    but its ok ;)
     
  8. OCELLARIS

    OCELLARIS Thread Starter

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    alan these sites for the overflow box you gave me, are they
    100% still working even in a power failiure and then 100% after
    the power failiure, i mean the starting and stoping of the siphon
     
  9. OCELLARIS

    OCELLARIS Thread Starter

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    hi alan

    the reef,org site
    tell me something, it has a tube at the top to start the siphon
    but is this a continous flow with a stop and start automatically
    even when the poer is out?
     
  10. viper357

    viper357 Admin MASA Contributor

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    Looks like Alan died. Have you figured anything out yet Ocellaris?
     
  11. Reef Maniac

    Reef Maniac MASA Contributor

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    No siphon is 100% safe. Over time, small air bubbles will accumulate in the top of the siphon overflow. As these bubbles accumulate they will merge and form larger bubbles, replacing water. After a few weeks/months (depending on flow velocity through the pipe) the air pocket will displace enough water to cause a siphon break when there is a power outage.

    The most foolproof method to minimize this risk is to add a small power head with an air intake venturi (most small power heads have them...) next to the siphon, drill a small hole in the top (highest point) of the siphon overflow pipe, and connect a piece of airline tubing from that point to the power head. In operation the power head then continuously sucks the air out of the siphon overflow pipe, preventing air build-up. It will also make it much easier to start the siphon in the first place, as it will fill the siphon overflow pipe automatically when switched on. Just keep in mind that Murphy has a way to defeat even the best designs, so to be really safe you should also add a water level float switch to cut off the power to the circulation pump if the level in the sump drops below a safe level.

    Hennie
     
  12. OCELLARIS

    OCELLARIS Thread Starter

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    hi viper
    i guess you are right .... :lol:

    infact i have been researching and reading and gaining advice from
    like all over the net, but i came to a conclusion that the siphon isnt
    100% safe :( and in total cost of building an over flow box with all
    plumbing will cost me abit and also take me some time to locate
    all items and not forgeting if the specs are met and its working 100%
    if not then its another cost again to rebuilt or repair, so i decided
    why not get a small submersed water pump yet still use an over flow box,

    have that water pump,pump the water from the overflowbox into your sump and a return pump to bring the water back, reason for the overflow box is so it still skims
    the top layer of water so O2 can be exchanged to an extent

    so i have a 2ft tank of volume : 60L and a sump of between 40L to 50L
    so would getting to submeresed water pumps of the same rate be the best for this in the case of the rate of what has been pulled away from the tank to the sump and whats returning from the sump to the tank?....
     
  13. OCELLARIS

    OCELLARIS Thread Starter

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    hi Reef Maniac

    i do understand what you said, tell me the water level float switch
    where can i get it and how much would that be
     
  14. Reef Maniac

    Reef Maniac MASA Contributor

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    Here is another sketch of a siphon, just to make it a little clearer how they work:

    [​IMG]

    And, of course, the siphon overflow does not have to be a pipe. I made this "box" overflow many years ago when I started with my first tank, as the bought "pipe" overflow could not handle the amount of water my return pump supplied. The airline visible in this photo actually goes unto the mouth of the overflow "box" and then up to the top of the overflow on the inside - I later just drilled the top of the overflow and added the airline directly to it from the outside.

    [​IMG]

    Hennie
     
  15. Storm

    Storm

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    Overflow Boxes are safe and will not brake there siphon or flood the floor if setup correctly. You just need to make sure the ""Plastic Pipe"" in the ""Outer Box"" going down to the sump is ""Higher"" then the pipe in the front box which is feeding water to the ""Back Box"". Otherwise it will brake the siphon if the power goes out. U will also from time to time hear a horrible vortexing sound cumming from the ""Back Pipe"", for this i recommend u experiment with hosepipe nozzels, turn them upside down so that the head is inside the pipe. And lastly if ure not sure how to set your rates, then just make sure the water comming down the pipe is MORE then the water going up, otherwise u will run your return pump dry. If u got any questions please ask as I am also using a overflow box for my setup.

    Here is a pic of my outer box to help explain some confusion, now remember the box on the inside of the tanks pipe is lower then then the Pipe going down.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: 1 Aug 2008
  16. Reef Maniac

    Reef Maniac MASA Contributor

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    And that advice is based on how many years of personal experience ???
     
  17. Reef Maniac

    Reef Maniac MASA Contributor

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    I'm pretty sure that Andrew of Eco Aquatics will be able to help - give him a call.

    Hennie
     
  18. Storm

    Storm

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    +/- 1-2 years worth of experience working on my own tank and friends and family's who use overflow boxes aswell. As i said if setup correctly it will not brake, mines never even sucked up bubbles, nor broken its siphon. Cant think of anyone i know whos has either. Anyways these are my personal experiences, i share them, people can use or not use them im just here to help and learn something new in the process :)
     
  19. OCELLARIS

    OCELLARIS Thread Starter

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    hi storm

    i get it, the outer box sump pipe is higher so as to stop the intake of wter
    in a power outage yet still have the u shape tube submereged so the siphon is
    still there, but reef maniac quoted that the presence of small airbubles that builds up
    over time and effects the spihon, storm had you experienced such an event?
     
  20. OCELLARIS

    OCELLARIS Thread Starter

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    thanx storm

    did you diy the overflow boxes or have you had them bought?
    i think i will give the overflow box a chance :)
     
  21. Storm

    Storm

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    Nope, ive never seen air bubbles or had to re-siphon my U tube. But u got the concept about the back pipe right, wd ;). And i had my box custom built, cost me R250.
     
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