Ideas

Doggfather

Al Bundy
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Well, i got a 120 gallon tank at home just sitting on the floor doing nothing and after my 8 days in Queensland, diving in the reef there, the idea of a setting up a reef tank was inveitable, i know i said i was wanting to go with discus, but on the other hand, heres my chance to go marine...and judgeing by my parents attitude towards fish, it'll be the last chance i have in a long while to come, so heres my ideas/problems of going reef:

1) Lighting: I can't afford halides, so scrap them off the wishlist...instead, i'm thinking of getting 2 4' shop lights, each of which holds 2 flurecent lights. Were getting an electirician in soon, so since i know nothing about from wiring and electrictiy it's best to let a professional do it. I understand they can't penetrate to the bottom of the tank but i won't be getting any difficult to keep corals/inverts for a long, long time to come, and even the easy to keep ones will have to wait until i'm happy with everything.

2) Since my parents don't like the idea of multiple tanks, when i put this one up i'll have to take down the current 3' (35 gallon) one i have, my idea would be to use this as a sump. I understand i'll need to put some baffles up (thats what they're called, arnt they?) and probably split it into 3 sections.
  • Pre Filter: Have the water come down here where it'll pass through some spogue, bio balls, etc
  • Have an area for equipment like my heater, skimmer and whatever else i can get out of the tank, possibly even use it as a refugium later on.
  • Put my return pump in here for the obvious reasons
3) My biggest problem...getting water into the sump. The tanks not drilled and if possible, i'd like to keep it that way. My idea atm is to get one, maybe or two, 2500 l/ph hour powerheads, position them as close to the top of the water level and attaching some tubing to the output so it feeds water down into the sump, if the power goes out, they would stop drawring water and in the case that they syphon, not much water would drain out of the tank. When the power comes back on, the powerhead(s) would turn back on and as soon as the water level reaches the intake (if it's not already at that level) water will be drawn back into the sump once more and everything will return back to normal.

4) Not a hardware question, but i might as well throw it in here. I got about 40 kg of silver sand, will that be ok in a reef tank? What do all you guys and girls use as your substrate?

Anyway, thats enough of my ramblings for now. If anybody has any suggestions at all, feel free to post since i got little clue about how this would turn out...it looks ok on paper though....as far as i can tell

Thanks!!!
 

Ed4567

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3) My biggest problem...getting water into the sump. The tanks not drilled and if possible, i'd like to keep it that way. My idea atm is to get one, maybe or two, 2500 l/ph hour powerheads, position them as close to the top of the water level and attaching some tubing to the output so it feeds water down into the sump, if the power goes out, they would stop drawring water and in the case that they syphon, not much water would drain out of the tank. When the power comes back on, the powerhead(s) would turn back on and as soon as the water level reaches the intake (if it's not already at that level) water will be drawn back into the sump once more and everything will return back to normal.

Sorry this isn't going to work. You wouldn't be able to match the rate that water is removed from the tank to the rate it is returned, so either the tank or the sump would overflow. However there are overflow boxes that will do this for you.
 
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Doggfather

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However there are overflow boxes that will do this for you.

But if power goes out using an overflow box, wouldn't the syphon break? So when the power comes back on the return pump would empty the sump and cause the tank to overflow?

Thanks for pointing it out though!
 

Ed4567

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Some claim to be self starting although TBH I haven't used one so can't comment on how well they work.
 

amstar15

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the cause of the over-flow is the return line. the over-flow box will not lose siphon because of the air intake.. it loses the water intake. the water level falls below the "grades" or over-flow area into the hang on box. thus the water stops going to the sump area. where the sump over-flows is the return line does not lose its siphon (yes it siphons even though its a return line) thus it sucks water back down into the sump thus causing the sump to over-flow. to get around this, you drill a small hole in the return line just below the water line. thus when the water siphons back down into the sump it goes below the drilled holed, causing the line to suck air and lose the siphon of the water back into the pump. when the electricity turns back on your pump will return the water and since your over-flow box did not lose its siphon (just the water-due to the water level being lower than the box) the whole cycle starts again. YOU HAVE TO LEAVE ENOUGH ROOM IN YOUR SUMP SO WHEN THE ELECTRICITY GOES OFF YOU HAVE ENOUGH SPACE FOR YOUR RETURN LINE TO SIPHON WATER DOWN PAST THE HOLE YOU DRILLED.
 

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