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  1. #1
    Senior Member scuba steve's Avatar
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    if you were setting up a 90g

    What size sump would you use on a 90g ....... I would like to have a spot for a one to two in sand bed, and a safe place for a those little critters to grow. Would you get a hang on from ac for this or incorperate it into your sump?
    Sugestions please
    stephen

  2. #2
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    Stephen, I have a sump and a separate refuge for the critters.

    The refuge is gravity feed to the display tank. Some people believe that more of the pods (and other critters) survive the trip to the display tank without going through a pump. I believe a study was done that showed 80% of the critters survived the trip through the pump. How important is the remaining 20%? I don't know. The water is pumped from the overflow corner to the refuge using a small power head as you don't want high current through the refuge (the macro algae need time to absorb the nutrients in the water). I found this wasn't enough flow (skim formed on the surface), so I added a power head (better known as a internal Fluval without the filter media) to increase the circulation in the refuge. This tank also has about 3 inches of sand in the bottom with a few pieces of lr. I added a number of sea shells in a pile for the pods.

    My sump is under the display tank and has some sand and lr as well. I have it divided into 3 sections. The first section (about 5 inches is full of lr and this is where the water enters the sump. I found that the lr helped eliminate the bubbles in the water. There is a slot at the bottom of the divider for the water to enter the second section. The second section is about 2 inches and the divider has another slot at the bottom for the water to enter the last section. I put filter floss (when needed) in the bottom of the second section. The last section contains my pump to the skimmer, skimmer return and return pump to the tank.

    The water level in the sump is about 60% full and when the power goes out, the level rises to the bottom of the black trip around the top - too close for comfort. If I lower the water level, the return pump forms a vortex and sends bubbles into the display tank. We plan on changing the 25 gallon sump for the 50 gallon tank that is available.

    If I were to do things again - I would only have a 2 to 3 inch sand bed in the display tank and buy one of the livestock watering troughs for the refuge and deep sand bed. That way, if there ever was a problem with the dsb, it would be easy to change it out. I like the idea of being able to see into the sump (check if the heater lights are on, etc.) so I would probably use glass or acrylic for the sump but I would not add any sand. Everytime the sand gets disturbed (I move a pump around), I have a sand storm in my display tank.

    Vickie

  3. #3
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    Interesting. If you use a watering trough as a refuge, wouldn't you lose the gravity feed?
    Nick

  4. #4
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    Yes, I would but with the bigger refuge and the fact that 80% survive the trip through the pump, I think I would still have more pods getting to the display tank as well as having more room for macros. There is a limit to the size of tank that you can suspend from the ceiling/wall.

    Vickie

  5. #5
    Senior Member mouse6196's Avatar
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    On my 90, I have a 20 gallon gravity fed refugium above the tank. Under the tank I have a 38 gallon (36 inch tank). I this sump I places acrylic dividers making a 1/3 of it an area for the pump (mag18) and insump skimmer (Berlin). Over a 1/3 is the refugium, and a small area where the water drops into. Of course I have the dividers set up to be bubble stops. I'll post a diagram and possible pics later. This gives me a refugium sump combo with about a 15 gallon refugium. WOrks great for me.

    The only thing two reef keepers will agree on, is what the third reef keeper is doing wrong!

  6. #6
    Senior Member mouse6196's Avatar
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    Here's a quick drawing...the 36 long tank fits uner the main 90 tank. I have NO flourescent lights above it...

    This is not to scale of course...

    The only thing two reef keepers will agree on, is what the third reef keeper is doing wrong!

  7. #7
    Senior Member scuba steve's Avatar
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    very cool
    Stephen

  8. #8
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    Vickie,
    Your skimmer pump should not be in that last section where you are returning the clean skimmed water. The pump should be pulling from the 1st section where the water enters from the overflow ( dirty water) What you are now doing is creating a looping effect with the skimmer recleaning clean water. This is not the most efficient way for the skimmer to be cleaning. Ideally, it should be pulling in 100% dirty water.

  9. #9
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    Toutouche, the Aqua-C's efficiency decreases noticeably when any debris gets in the nozzle (like most skimmers, I'm told) which is why I put the pump after the mechanical filtration. The foam filter on the Mag still allows particles into the nozzle.

    The thing that I forgot to mention is that the skimmer empties into a small compartment that is within 4 inches of the return pump. This compartment only has holes on the one side to direct the clean water to the return pump. There is also a pile of lr dividing the last comparent into 2 sections - skimmer pick up on one side and return pump on the other.

    I fully agree - a skimmer should be pulling in water that has only gone through mechanical filtration, if needed. Once this hair algae is gone, and I quit distrubing the tank, I will remove the filter floss and return the pump to the second compartment.

    Vickie

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