Jump to content

Fishroom Remodel Has Begun!

Recommended Posts

  • Replies 253
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

Top Posters In This Topic

Popular Posts

I went with white, purple, and blue piping. All the colors mean there is water of some kind inside them. Sent from my SM-G960U using Tapatalk

Update: Plumbing ordered last night.   Used three different businesses. https://www.pvcfittingsonline.com/ for bulk of the fittings.  (thank John, I think this was a recommendation from y

And just like that, THERE'S WATER IN THE TANKS!   Had enough new salt water to fill first tank last night.  No leaks, all working as planned.   Used new mixing station overnight to make another b

Posted Images

According to the website, it might be Vinyl-Acrylic. (I don't have a picture of the Exact product I bought).   But completely flexible, good feel, durable, and easy to cut with a knife -- I'd easily describe it as Vinyl.    Nice to work with.   


  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Weekend update.

  1. 2nd coat of paint on mixing station shelf.  Currently waiting on plumbing orders to arrive.  
  2. Moved frag rack system into fish room.  Perfect fit.    (still running a cleaning cycle on it)
  3. Moved temporary dehumidifier into fish room.    (going to buy a dedicated one)
  4. A Fish Friend I haven't seen in ~5 years came over to checkout the setup.   Can I tease tease him back into the hobby?!

Next steps include:

  • Plumb Mixing Station
  • Move and Mount RO & booster pumps
  • connect frag system to main system <-- this is the big one

Challenge is how to connect the sumps (via gravity).  Or to a new single larger sump.  I don't want to run two separate systems.

I am considering moving the frag rack to the opposite side of the room (left side).  Issue, it will block one of the mixing station tanks.   Will likely move the rack just to see how big of deal this is.



  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Multi Colored RO tubing order has arrived
  • PVC Plumbing order has arrived, matching @SuncrestReef basic color choice and design.
    • One flaw, they are back ordered on the BLUE 3-way!  (apparently it shipped Today)

One other snag.  The 1 1/4" to 1" adapter fitting is REALLY snug in the bulk head of the 75 gallon tank.  It's a Sch80/Grey fitting to look nice.  I think I'll go see if HD or Lowes has a sch 40/white adapter fitting that screws in easier - even if I had to paint it grey after the fact.

General color scheme for the RO tubing is:

  • Yellow - Raw Feed from house water supply to RO unit (long run, whole length of garage)
  • Blue - Pure RO water
  • Orange - Fresh Salt Water out of the mixing tank.  (Goes into DOS for auto water changes)
  • Black - Old Salt Water, out of the tank.  (Coming into DOS for auto water changes, and then goes off to the drain)
  • White - Basic dosing color - for Amino Acid dosing/etc
  • Red - Spare, just in case 



Link to post
Share on other sites

Last weekends work is mostly not visible.   

  • Frag tank system has now completed Acid soak, Bleach soak, scrubbing, rinsing, and is ready to go.  (and currently dry, which means its ready for the next stages.
  • Finally found a solution to plumb frag system into main tank system.   Thanks to my friend Steve, who had the ah ha moment which will allow me to leave the frag tanks on the right side of the room - where they feel best.

Visible work, with pictures.

  • Moved and then extended electrical outlets
  • Added LED backlights behind mixing tanks.  Should make it easier to see liquid levels.

Electrical Extended (new box visible on upper right side), and old electrical moved around the corner (visible on left side wall - where paint is now ugly)



Mixing Tanks Removed.   LED Lights will be mounted in pvc framing, with PVC cut in half.  LED Light strip zip tied inside.   Pipes can be rotated to direct LEDs away from blinding if needed.




And the finished product!




  • Like 5
Link to post
Share on other sites

Everyone has a display tank, but this is the first Display Mixing Station I’ve ever seen!  Looks awesome, and that will make it much easier to see your water levels.  Nice work.

What was the ah ha idea for the frag tanks?  Better than my stacked bunk tanks idea?

Link to post
Share on other sites

Frag Tank ah ha is pretty simple, Connecting Pipe doesn't have to be at Bottom of the Sump height.  Thus, I can run a single pipe from current sump, straight across room, at height of mixing tank stand support, and connect the two systems cleanly.  

Background, for everyone else.    I've had a challenge.

  • I want a single water system, not a separate main and separate Frag. 
  • Main system already has a sump (just inside the fish room, to the Left. You've seen blue glow in the room picts.)
  • I REALLY like the frag tanks on the Right side of the room, opposite the mixing tanks, as shown in all pictures
  • How do I make one water system?    Return piping wants a gravity feed, needs to go right in front of mixing station, and will block lots of things.

One option considered, move frag tanks to Left side of the room.  Super easy to connect the water systems.  But the Two tanks are 8' long, and  block the mixing station tanks.  John had the idea of instead of an 8' row of tanks, a 4' double decker high stack.   I thought about this one, was honest with myself, and concluded I'd ignore the top tank and wouldn't give it proper care and feeding.   I need the tanks in a row.

And thanks to my friend Steve, who is a builder extraordinaire, the solution is easy.   For the record, our conversation included phrases;   Crawlspace, concrete chainsaw, masonry chisel, removing studs, that doesn't look load bearing, ...   This Ah ha solution is much better. 

Link to post
Share on other sites

My monster system will also be located on both sides of the room.  600 gallon tank, refugium, roller mat on the right side, skimmer, frag tanks, UV, etc located on the left side. 

My pump will also be located on the left side.  Sooo...  gravity outfall from the display into roller mat and macro algae> gravity feed into 100 gallon stock tank >  then 3" pvc pipe that transfers the water to another 100 gallon stock tank on the other side of the room (left).   Tables show that 3" handle 7,000 gph so there should not be too much elevation difference from Fuge 1 and fuge 2 on the other side of the room.   From the second stock tank I have a reeflo hammerhead that will push about 3,000 gph to the display and another 2,000 gph to the frag tank, skimmer chamber, and UV system.  All of those are located on the left side and drain directly back to the left side stock tank. 



Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, pdxmonkeyboy said:

... Tables show that 3" handle 7,000 gph so there should not be too much elevation difference from Fuge 1 and fuge 2 on the other side of the room.  ...

Could you point me to those "tables".  I'd like to see 2 1/2" and 2".    Is this a flow rate based on gravity only, with what delta head height?

Link to post
Share on other sites

Your google broke"  LOL  

here is the table that appears all the time on the iternet.  The first column is "gravity" or really low flow.  I confirmed with our storm water engineers that these numbers are inline with what their design flows are (which are typically very subtle slopes).   The table I can't find that I would love to get is the table that used to be on the beanimal website.  He had a table for full siphon flows based on pipe size and feet of head. 

Aquariums all flow at VERY low psi BTW, like less than 1 psi.  to calculate PSI from head height you divide the height in inches by 27.71.  So if you drilled a hole in the bottom of a 24" tall tank, the water pressure would be .87 psi.  I know its intuitive to think that water is super heavy and creates lots of pressure... but it doesn't.  Municipal water towers to push out 60-65psi water at your faucet are around 150' high.  

Also, I use uniseals on anything 2" or higher.  They are way cheaper than bulkheads, work better on rounded surfaces and allow you to replace plumbing without unions.   


Edited by pdxmonkeyboy
  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

You just made my night, UniSeal!   I was looking at bulkhead prices (and bulkiness) as the limiting factor in pipe size.  

Google only works when your brain can dream up the right phrase to look up. I hit it with a number of options, and then swallowed my pride and asked for help.  Thanks, on both items!

Link to post
Share on other sites

Uniseal warehouse is going to be your jam. Unless your in a hurry then BRS has them as well. Note.. when inserting big pipes into uniseals it is a major @*&%%$# so, sand a slight bevel on the outside of the pipe and use some lubricant. Non aquarium stuff we just used dish soap, but for aquarium I would use silicone grease.

Sent from my SM-G960U using Tapatalk

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

2" pipe (scrap piece I had) will fit!   Tonight was just Visualizing, and ... I'm going to go Single Sump.  Just grow the main sump and plumb the frag tanks in directly.  It works!

Current Sump:  32" long x 15" wide x 16"tall (~33gal)

New Sump:  32" long x 28" wide x 24" tall (~93gal)  <-- 3x volume should be enough





Link to post
Share on other sites

With the Ah ha moment over, more concrete planning for sump and plumbing has begun.

I used powerpoint recently to explore an idea of plumbing in a spare return pump.  I need two return pumps, one to main tank and one to the frag tanks.  I tried plumbing in three pumps and the valves needed to switch in/out.   Middle pump is the spare.    The question is going to be, will they fit my space.   

Powerpoint was a reasonable mock up, but I wanted to see what more than tops down.  So I shot @SuncrestReef a note to see if the software he used for the house remodel (Home Designer Pro) had PVC parts in it.  It does not.   But he found shapes from a different option that looks simple enough


@SuncrestReef My software (Home Designer Pro) does not have plumbing features.

If you're familiar with SketchUp, you can download PVC shapes from FormuFit.  See the tutorials on this page:  https://formufit.com/pages/sketchup

2020-02-13 Spare Pump MockUp.jpg

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

yes. You can certainly find higher quality ball valves and unions but you have to remember that we are generally dealing with very low pressure systems.  

I am going to use some DWV (drain waste vent) fittings on my system to lower flow resistance and noise.  I have a big pump so blasting it through a T fitting is not all that great for flows. 

But DWV fittings do come in long sweeps and other cool shapes like this...


Link to post
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.

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.


  • Create New...