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SpongeAl
11-24-2016, 05:09 AM
I decided it would be fun to start a journal of my current tank build.

This is an upgrade from the shallow AIO reef I was running before. The AIO was cool, but everybody likes a sump.

Many decisions were made to keep this upgrade as practical as possible both maintenance and cost wise. Essentially I picked the light I wanted to run, (150 Metal Halide) then picked a tank size that would work with it.

I always wanted a ADA tank, as it turns out, the 60P is a decent all round value, under $200 Canadian for a tank with starfire glass, I was sold.

Right away I could tell this build was going to be physically tight, at 24" wide but still an upgrade from the AIO.

I debated building my ghost over flow box, but just as I was about to order the materials, I noticed eshopps came out with a reasonably priced overflow called the "Eclipse", actually less money then the materials to build one. I went with the "Large" version that has 3 bulkheads.

After watching soo many episodes of "Tanked" and "Fish Tank Kings", I thought it would be cool to have a steel stand. I really liked the appeal of being able to remove a facade, rather then just having a couple of doors. Plus the steel structure is much smaller then typical wood construction.
My brother welded the stand together for me and I coated it with a polyurea coating. (box liner spray.)
Normally I can do a decent job with this spray, but when I went to do it, I only found a part can, the nozzles kinda clog easy and I ran a little shy. Go figure right after I finished it I found the full can I was originally looking for. Good enough.

Now the sump. I wanted to have the electrical components isolated from the "wet" side, this meant brutal compromises in actual sump space. So the stand is divided off with splash walls to separate the two.

I had planned to build the sump myself, just so I could meet specific needs, like a stable skimmer compartment, room for drain down from the display, ATO res, etc, the usual stuff except I wasn't going to run a fuge for obvious reasons. I got pretty busy with work and I though it would be nice to just buy a sump, but I never thought I could find one to work in such a custom setup.

As it turns out the eshopps "cube nano" sump was damn near the same outside dimensions as the sump I was designing. I really didn't think it would have room for drain down as it runs much fuller than my design and has a fuge. I took a huge risk and bought it not really noing the actual working volume.

Long story short, the sump works out great. I think I will like running a fuge, it actually does have room for drain down from the display, even with the return nozzle pointed down, and as a bonus even has room should my ATO stick on and drain the 1 gallon res. The only significant drawback is that there is no space for the ATO res inside the sump. Oh well.

I suppose this first post is long enough, so here is a picture of the concept.

SpongeAl
11-25-2016, 03:24 AM
So one of the gambles I took with the Eshopps sump was how my plumbing was going to work.
As you can see in the picture 1 below, I had to cut out some acrylic to accommodate my plumbing as it was offset a bit from the sumps bulkhead.

I used 1" PVC for the 3 Bean Animal drains. The sump came with some flex line, so I cut it in half and am using it for the drops of the 2nd and 3rd drains below the unions.

A note on the Gate Valve, I purchased a decent quality spears valve. Eshopps does sell a ball valve kit, but it's too expensive IMO, better to invest in one good gate valve and forget the rest.

Picture 2 shows the template I made for the router, picture 3 is the end result.

Main drain will be on the left, the second drain enters the filter sock area, the third lands in the return pump section at the right.