Jump to content

Rick's New Tank Swap (85 Gal Display + 45 Gal Sump/fuge)


Rick

Recommended Posts

Here are some pics and details for my new (to me) tank and sump. The old tank is a 60 Gal. (Previously thought to be a 55 Gal.) AGA that I drilled for drain and return lines with a 20 gal sump (about 15 gal in it). The thread with details on it are here. A few days ago I spotted this ad here for an 85 gal. aquariun that had a small crack in the upper left corner. After a phone call and taking a look at the 85 gallon tank I decided to buy the tank plus the m1100 powerhead (1100 GPH) and a mag 18 pump (1800 GPH) as well. I already had a 45 Gal long aquarium (my original plan with it was to use it for freshwater but I couldn't figure out a place to put it) that had been given to me a few weeks earlier.(All I had to do was pick it up) I decided to use it for a large sump/refugium underneath the 85 gal. I do not have room for 2 tanks so I'm swapping the larger one to replace the smaller one. At the request of another member I'm going to try to document some of the swap details.

 

Day One: Picked up 85 gal. aquarium and pumps, cleaned aquarium, repaired crack (I was told it still held water but I decided to use weld-on 4 anyway to seal it up), designed obtained, and cut materials for the dual tank stand. I also researched closed loop systems and started working out the plumbing needed.

 

Here is the aquarium before I picked it up:

attachment.php?attachmentid=4659&d=1242866505

attachment.php?attachmentid=4660&d=1242866512

 

This pic is after I cleaned it and repaired it.

attachment.php?attachmentid=4668&stc=1&d=1243101039

 

These 3 pics show the holes it had in it already for plumbing:

attachment.php?attachmentid=4669&stc=1&d=1243101039

attachment.php?attachmentid=4670&stc=1&d=1243101039

attachment.php?attachmentid=4671&stc=1&d=1243101039

 

Day Two: Picked up some of the plumbing parts, picked up the 45 gal tank, cleaned the 45 gal, dropped off buckets for new water.

 

Day Three: Assembled stand, Dry fit of all in tank plumbing, picked up 25 gallons of water. (I'll probably need another 25 gallons as well)

 

These 2 pics show the stands and aquariums next to each other. If you look close you can see the 20 gal. sump for the smaller tank on the floor between them. The stand in not completed yet (I'll be adding some trim and doors after it is set up and has been running for awhile). I went with a wider stand to allow the 48" 45 gallon tank to fit under it. The taller stand is for a couple of reasons. First is that I always felt the other one was too short (had to bend down to really see into it) plus a taller stand gives me better access to the sump underneath. The front face of the stand is held together with screws to allow me to remove the face if I ever need to take the lower tank out. The construction is 2x4 frame, 3/4 plywood top and floor, and white board/pine exterior and weighs about 3 times as much as the other stand.

 

attachment.php?attachmentid=4678&stc=1&d=1243250512

attachment.php?attachmentid=4679&stc=1&d=1243250512

 

For the plumbing I decided to use 2 pumps and eliminate 3 powerheads from my current setup. One pump (Little Giant about 560 GPH) will circulate water from the sump/refugium and I will tie into the primary drain for my DIY in sump skimmer. I'll be using the Herbie method for the drain since it is the only method that totally eliminates air entering the drain and is therefore quiet at both the top and bottom of the drain. (Essentially the drain flow is adjusted to match the return flow rate until the drain is under water preventing it from sucking air into the system) It utilizes a backup drain in case the primary drain ever gets plugged. A backup drain is a good idea anyway and I would install a drain valve anyway so there is really no extra plumbing involved. Initially I was going to return this to the 2 lower front returns until I realized that would allow the entire 85 gal tank to drain out as soon as the pump was shut off. A quick modification and it will now feed the two returns in the top rear of the tank. The top 2 side returns, top front 2 returns, and bottom 2 front returns will be on a closed loop system using the Mag 18 (1800 GPH) pump.

 

These 3 pictures show the plumbing inside from the front, then the plumbing inside the overflow, and then the plumbing coming down underneath (the plumbing underneath is just pieced together enough to determine how I will run the lines today when I finish it up)

 

attachment.php?attachmentid=4680&stc=1&d=1243252450

 

attachment.php?attachmentid=4681&stc=1&d=1243252450

 

attachment.php?attachmentid=4682&stc=1&d=1243252450

 

For the sump/refugium baffles/dividers I'm going to use DIY compression baffles that are movable (See the article for these here). This will allow me to come in later and modify my skimmer if i want and/or to put in a clacium reactor (or for any other changes I may decide on latter).

 

Today I plan to get the plumbing completed and hope to be able to start shuffling things around to get the stand/tank put into place and most of the swap completed. Unfortunately I do not have room to put the tank into a different location so I will need to empty the old tank into containers first, then move the old tank/stand out, and finally transfer everything into the new one. Hopefully I can accomplish this in a few hours once the plumbing is finished.

post-5811-141867776337_thumb.jpg

post-5811-14186777634_thumb.jpg

post-5811-141867776344_thumb.jpg

post-5811-141867776347_thumb.jpg

post-5811-141867776349_thumb.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Nice work!

 

I use the Herbie method, too, though with two overflows, it's not ideal. Needs a bit of adjusting every now and then, but it's so much quieter than anything else I've tried.

 

Looks like you've really thought through the closed loop arrangement! After fiddling for a few hours with different pump arrangements, I wish I'd done something like a spray bar on the bottom in the back!

 

Build thread always make me want to set up something new, too! :D

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Nice job on the close loop? I was thinking of buying that tank on CL too. I guess I know who got. What kind of pump are going to run on the closed loop? Good luck!!

I have a Mag 18 (1800 GPH) that I had thrown in with the deal on the tank.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Nice work!

 

I use the Herbie method, too, though with two overflows, it's not ideal. Needs a bit of adjusting every now and then, but it's so much quieter than anything else I've tried.

 

Looks like you've really thought through the closed loop arrangement! After fiddling for a few hours with different pump arrangements, I wish I'd done something like a spray bar on the bottom in the back!

 

Build thread always make me want to set up something new, too! :D

 

There was never any question on the overflow method. I fiddled with all of the other methods and the best I could do was quiet it down at the top but it still made racket going into the sump. Kind of annoying when your trying to watch TV. Now all I hear is the water going over the sump baffles. I've found that the water level in the overflow does drop some as the water evaporates. I put the main drain fairly low so I can make my initial overflow level adjustment up high with the sump full and then as it evaporates it should stay above the drain. If not then it's an early warning that will alert me that I need to add some water. (I.E. If it starts sucking air then the water level is low)

 

What advantage would the spray bar in back be as opposed to the front? (If I see an advantage I may run another pipe from the front to the back)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 weeks later...

Is anyone else having problems seeing images that have been uploaded to the forum? I.E. All of the pictures above showing up as red X's. I can view them from the browser on my phone but none of my systems at home see anything but red x's. If you are also getting red x's what ISP are you using? I'm trying to narrow down the cause and I believe it is either my router (doubtful as it hasn't changed in more than a year) or my service provider dropping part of the packets for the images. (I've eliminated the browser and system since this occurs on multiple systems with multiple browsers)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I got busy and didn't keep track of this on a daily basis but here is an update. Basically I completed the tank swap without incident and then put together the hood and added doors. Following this I stained everything. The stain did not work out the way we expected so I'll be going back and doing it over again. Basically the stain didn't lay down evenly so I'll strip it and then put new on. I will also be rounding the corners of the door frames and the front edge of the lower cabinet with a router. For the closed loop system I was only able to use 4 returns on the tank instead of the planned 6 which still gives it some nice flow. This is supplemented by the SEIO m1100 power head and the dual sump returns which combined provide decent flow throughout the tank. After the swap was completed though I ran into a few bobbles. First is that the Green BTA wandered up to the power head and was sucked into the intake. It lasted for 3 days and it looked like it would survive when it then started expelling it's innards. I pulled it out into a separate container in which it basically disintegrated over a 4 hour period. The power head now has a screen on it to prevent any future occurrence. Next is that I busted the original 45 gallon tank I was using as a sump when I tried to add baffles to it. I attempted to replace this with a 55 gallon tank but when I started to drill a hole for the return line I discovered that the tank was actually tempered glass. Finally after a plea here Bob Lowman came up with a 40 gallon acrylic tank that had previously been converted into a sump. To utilize it better for my purpose I added one baffle and drilled holes through one that already existed giving me more volume for water evaporation. I also added an eggcrate shelf under the drain portion to put carbon and to allow some rock rubble to be put under it. The center chamber fits the skimmer and allows enough room to be used as a refugium. To light the refugium I picked up a clip on light at Lowes for about $6 along with a package of 4 spiral fluorescent daylight (6500K) bulbs. The power draw is 18 Watts with an equivalent rating of 75 watts.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The first picture here is of one of the DIY bulkhead fittings. This is just a little improvement on the normal DIY one where an o-ring is placed between fittings. For this I took a fitting that was one size larger and cut about 3/8" off. This still left plenty to use on the fitting the cut came from and it gave me a collar to glue to the diy bulkhead fitting. The collar just keeps the o-ring from being spit out as it's tightened. I used 3 or 4 of these on return lines.

attachment.php?attachmentid=4813&stc=1&d=1244531687

These 4 pics are of the tank and stand a couple of nights ago. You can see where I added a temporary shelf up high for any corals that have high lighting requirements.

attachment.php?attachmentid=4814&stc=1&d=1244531687

attachment.php?attachmentid=4815&stc=1&d=1244531687

 

This pic shows the lighting inside the hood, 2 175 HQI MH, 2 96 Watt PC 460 nm Actinics (Blue), and one over driven Normal Fluorescent (About 73 watts) with a 420 nm Actinic (Purple). The hood itself has 2 access doors in front plus the top of the hood also is a hinged door although I will likely just take the hood off if I need more access. It also includes a 4" 3 speed fan to help evacuate heat from under the hood. The hood also hides most of the plumbing in the top along with most of the crack in the top left of the tank. The electronic thermometer is strategically placed in front of the small portion of the crack that isn't covered by the hood.

 

attachment.php?attachmentid=4816&stc=1&d=1244531687

 

This pic shows the sump along with my DIY skimmer, DIY refugium light, and a fan to help keep it cool on warm days.

 

attachment.php?attachmentid=4817&stc=1&d=1244531687

post-5811-141867744987_thumb.jpg

post-5811-14186774499_thumb.jpg

post-5811-141867745269_thumb.jpg

post-5811-141867745273_thumb.jpg

post-5811-141867745276_thumb.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

One more pic of the entire setup with the doors open.

attachment.php?attachmentid=4818&stc=1&d=1244533513

 

Some new livestock additions to the new tank now. The Purple Tang and the Jewel Damsel are both new. The Chromis, Yellowtail Damsels, and the Coral Beauty Angel are all from the previous tank.

 

attachment.php?attachmentid=4819&stc=1&d=1244533513

 

In this pic we have a Yellow or Gold Headed Sleeper Goby and a Black and White Ocellaris.

 

attachment.php?attachmentid=4820&stc=1&d=1244533764

 

This pic shows a Porcelain or Anemone Crab along with a Green Carpet Anemone (Both new).

 

attachment.php?attachmentid=4821&stc=1&d=1244534167

 

Another shot showing several of the fish at once.

 

attachment.php?attachmentid=4822&stc=1&d=1244534167

post-5811-14186774528_thumb.jpg

post-5811-141867745283_thumb.jpg

post-5811-141867745286_thumb.jpg

post-5811-14186774529_thumb.jpg

post-5811-141867745294_thumb.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Some of the corals,

 

Eagle Eye (So I was told) Zoanthids (Part of a swap for the old 20 gallon tank I was using for a sump)

 

attachment.php?attachmentid=4823&stc=1&d=1244534412

 

A Blue Tipped Acropora (I think) Frag

 

attachment.php?attachmentid=4824&stc=1&d=1244534514

 

A monti not yet determined (Polyps haven't extended yet). I was told it is either a Purple Haze or a Superman

 

attachment.php?attachmentid=4825&stc=1&d=1244534650

 

A Capnella (Kenya Tree Coral)

 

attachment.php?attachmentid=4826&stc=1&d=1244534650

 

Another shot showing several of the corals (both old and new)

 

attachment.php?attachmentid=4827&stc=1&d=1244535133

post-5811-141867745297_thumb.jpg

post-5811-141867745301_thumb.jpg

post-5811-141867745304_thumb.jpg

post-5811-141867745307_thumb.jpg

post-5811-14186774531_thumb.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

A good shot of the Jewel Damsel

 

attachment.php?attachmentid=4828&stc=1&d=1244535316

 

And another pic of the reef side of the tank

 

attachment.php?attachmentid=4829&stc=1&d=1244535316

 

and here are a couple of the new Sand Shifting Star on one of the rare occasions that it surfaced from under the sand.

 

attachment.php?attachmentid=4830&stc=1&d=1244535646

 

attachment.php?attachmentid=4831&stc=1&d=1244535646

 

In addition to the above I've added a few more snails (Nassarius and Black Nerrite) and removed the Cinnamon Clown and 2 Turbo Snails. These were placed into a smaller FOWLR tank where the Cinnamon Clown could not harass the other clowns and the Turbo's can't knock over the coral frags. I also now have a RO/DI unit so I can stop running back and forth to the LFS for water. I'm sure I missed a few details but I've tried to cover the highlights.

 

The next projects include stripping and refinishing the stand and hood and then making 50 lbs. or so of DIY rock using Oyster shells and Portland Cement (Both of which I have already). Once this cures I hope to build the reef up far enough to eliminate the need for the shelf in the top of the tank. Who knows beyond that, I'm sure I'll come up with something.

post-5811-141867745314_thumb.jpg

post-5811-141867745317_thumb.jpg

post-5811-141867745321_thumb.jpg

post-5811-141867745324_thumb.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I would suggest that you place the fungia coral, (pinkish plate), on the sand bed. They should do better located there.

 

Nice start!

 

That's where it actually is right now. I put it up there for a day to see if it made a difference in how much sand the goby dropped on it. He does a great job of keeping the sand clean but has a tendency to move it around dropping it on the fungia and the maze coral.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Looking great! Just so you know, that particular variety of sand sifting star is quite carnivorous. They don't bother coral but small sand sifting snails are their favorite meal! I had one for a long while and he would always end up with bulges developing on him. I figured out that he was just eating all of my nassarius and cerith snails. The many spikes and color give this variety away. The more reef safe variety is more of a grey color and has less spikes. Also the kind that you have tend to burry themselves for long periods of time causing you to think that they are gone. You might notice them under the sand if they are near the side of the tank and you can see them but other than that they very seldom pop out of the sand. Also they are super fast when they do. Much faster than the grey kind.

 

Its too bad because they are more interesting than the typical sand sifting star is. Mine ended up surfacing to spawn in my tank one evening. It was pretty cool to see clouds of sperm or eggs just leaking from all over its body. Corals loved it!

 

 

Good stuff!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Looking great! Just so you know, that particular variety of sand sifting star is quite carnivorous. They don't bother coral but small sand sifting snails are their favorite meal! I had one for a long while and he would always end up with bulges developing on him. I figured out that he was just eating all of my nassarius and cerith snails. The many spikes and color give this variety away. The more reef safe variety is more of a grey color and has less spikes. Also the kind that you have tend to burry themselves for long periods of time causing you to think that they are gone. You might notice them under the sand if they are near the side of the tank and you can see them but other than that they very seldom pop out of the sand. Also they are super fast when they do. Much faster than the grey kind.

 

Its too bad because they are more interesting than the typical sand sifting star is. Mine ended up surfacing to spawn in my tank one evening. It was pretty cool to see clouds of sperm or eggs just leaking from all over its body. Corals loved it!

 

 

Good stuff!

 

Thanks, I'll keep that in mind before I buy any more nassarius snails. (I've only bought a few so far) I did notice that it looks like there are one or two extra shells on the bottom. As mentioned it spends most of it's time buried. I kicked it up last night so I would know where it was when I rearranged the rocks (didn't want to set one on it) but otherwise the pictures above were one of the rare times he came out. Last night I rearranged the rocks to get them almost all of the way to the top with a lot of hiding spots under them. This allowed me to take the temporary shelf out.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

good work on plumbing!!

 

Thanks, I knew I missed some details. For the plumbing the hardest part was getting all of the lines connected underneath in a manner that would allow them to be removed later without too much hassle. It's still a bit of a puzzle since they have a particular order they need to be connected or disconnected. I also used (made) 3/4" PCV to 1/2" CPCV adapters to increase the pressure at each return to give stronger flow at each one. 2 of these are actual PCV to CPCV adapters (2 pieces each) while the other 4 are single CPCV adapters that were close to the correct size to push into the 3/4 PCV fittings. These I sanded down enough for a press fit resulting in a much shorter adapter.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Looking great! Just so you know' date=' that particular variety of sand sifting star is quite carnivorous.[/quote']

 

Wow, I wasn't too worried about a few nassarius snails so I didn't think much of it. I just used a flashlight to see in the tank and low and behold the star had climbed clear to the top of the tank and snagged an astrea which it was getting ready to eat. That's probably the same reason it came out the other night. Hopefully it will not get a taste for medium sized Cinnamon Clowns or larger turbo snails because it's been banished from the display tank for now.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

LOL I would have bet money that he would go for some smaller astreas! I have seen the one I had take out all sorts of snails. I don't think larger ones will be on the menu until he gets much larger and cinnamon clowns are still a little quick I think. Fun to watch just not too fun on the wallet.

 

 

 

Garrett

 

He's gone now. (Swapped with the LFS). It was funny when he spit the Astrea Shell out into the bag while it was still floating at the LFS. I noticed a bulge but I didn't think it was big enough. Apparently I was wrong. (laugh) I suspect it got 3 or 4 Nassarius, a couple of Astrea's and one or two Black Nerrites.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Here are some more pics.

 

Flame Angel

 

attachment.php?attachmentid=4910&stc=1&d=1244991058

 

Another of the Eagle Eye? Zoanthid

 

attachment.php?attachmentid=4911&stc=1&d=1244991058

 

Another cool one of the Carpet Anemone reflected on the side of the tank

 

attachment.php?attachmentid=4913&stc=1&d=1244991058

 

Orange Linkia Star (Swap for Sand Sifting Star that was slowly cleaning out the snail population)

 

attachment.php?attachmentid=4912&d=1244991021

 

Frag from the Kenya Tree Coral

 

attachment.php?attachmentid=4914&stc=1&d=1244991058

post-5811-14186774547_thumb.jpg

post-5811-141867745473_thumb.jpg

post-5811-141867745477_thumb.jpg

post-5811-14186774548_thumb.jpg

post-5811-141867745484_thumb.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

And a couple more

 

Serpent Star (Thanks Garrett)

 

attachment.php?attachmentid=4915&stc=1&d=1244991752

 

New (Used) Skimmer

 

attachment.php?attachmentid=4916&stc=1&d=1244991752

 

The skimmer I purchased used at Waves for $50 and appears to be an Octopus Skimmer Knockoff. The recirc pump included is a Gen X 2400 (635 GPH) which is working however it needs a new impellor. (Plan to get one next week) To get it into the sump I had to trim the bottom plate and take it apart (everything that would come apart). For the watersupply I added a Hagen 402 Power Head (Dug 2 of them out of a box of stuff that was tossed into a garage sale deal a few weeks ago so it was effectively free) I added an elbow (scraps from earlier plumbing) to eliminate splashing from the return and replaces the air line. Total cost after I get a replacement impellor will be about $65. As can be seen in the picture this has pulled about 1/4" of gunk out of the water overnight.

post-5811-141867745487_thumb.jpg

post-5811-14186774549_thumb.jpg

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
×
×
  • Create New...