125 Gallon Steal

swervesauce

New member
Ok, so I scored this awesome new tank off good ole CL! I currently run a pretty basic FOWLR 55 gallon with everything store bought. I am freaking excited (by you guys in here) about getting into some serious DIY on this new build. I've been reading all over the web, on all kinds of sites, catching ideas and having dreams. I am going to get to the point now of the thread. I will be taking on this new build with the upmost detail. A huge question though is about the plumbing off an overflow/sump setup, to which I've never done myself. The tank I'm bringing home tomorrow is 48" long 25" high 24" deep. What is concerning and causing me to scratch my head are the predrilled holes I have now adopted. It has dual corner overflows, both with what look to be 1" drains and 3/4" returns. Normal sounding, right? Well those aren't the only holes. The tank also has a huge 2.5" hole in the dead center of the back glass and two 2" holes on either side of said big hole. These are confusing my brain. Now, while I don't have the tank with pictures right now, the little kid in me is excited and up late and wanting to see if I could get some advice on this ASAP (since I'll be playing with my tanks on my day off). How should I plumb this tank? Should I use the corner overflows and cap the back ones? Should I use the back glass holes for some sort of Bean Animal setup (if even possible that far down the glass....halfway) and seal off the corner overflows? Use both somehow? Or just replace the back glass with solid sheet, use corners....maybe replace bottom glass use the back.......or maybe replace back and bottom glass and go with Bean Animal as originally designed?

This community is awesome. So much appreciation for the answers/looks/advice. Pics to come tomorrow once in possession!
 

Malster1

New member
Wow sounds like a wholly tank. Lol. Can't wait to see a picture of it. Those extra holes sound like a close loop system or a surge setup they were running. As for ideas on a setup, a few pictures will go a long way. Congrats on the new tank!
 

Waddleboy

New member
its not really worth taking the tank apart. its expensive and a lot of work. Use the center for some sort of closed loop set up. and keep the overflows as overflows. Probably your best bet
 

Acrylics

Active member
its not really worth taking the tank apart. its expensive and a lot of work. Use the center for some sort of closed loop set up. and keep the overflows as overflows. Probably your best bet
my thoughts as well.
The 2.5" hole would be an old Hayward Sch80 1.5" bulkhead or any of the cheaper 1.5" bulkhead fittings.
As for the 2" holes, the only bulkhead I know if that requires 2" holes are Spears 1", it's a Sched80 bulkhead. Most other Sch80 bulkheads require 1 7/8" holes and these may be used as well. I wouldn't even try putting a lesser 1" bulkhead in there - far too much slop for my comfort as they use a 1 3/4" hole.
The 2.5" hole would be an old Hayward Sch80 1.5" bulkhead or any of the cheaper 1.5" bulkhead fittings.

We drill some pretty funky closed loops setups sometimes, so nothing surprises me anymore ;) lol
 

swervesauce

New member
Thanks for the interest and replies guys. I just the baby home and will be done for the night. Water change and scraping of the glass of my 55, and moving this bad boy took up too much time. I will be cleaning and water testing tomorrow. The man I got it from had it given to him for some contract work and doesn't know how sound it is. He honestly didn't know what he had and luckily for me. I will leave the pictures for you guys to comment on. I really like the idea of the close loop system. I also went and looked back at BA's original thread and he and others were commenting on "linking" the two overflows to maybe allow for his setup. I'll have to go into it further. I really want a super silent and redundant failure option system. I'm in no rush and will not do anything to this setup unless it's the right thing, so we shall see. There's also a bright blue vinyl like background sprayed on the back which will be getting the boot for a black. Enjoy guys and thanks again for the comments

:beer:

<a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/sirawesomesauce/7925768406/" title="IMG_20120903_144736 by fifthstreetjammer, on Flickr"><img src="http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8309/7925768406_b5ea814aab_c.jpg" width="600" height="800" alt="IMG_20120903_144736"></a>

<a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/sirawesomesauce/7925767864/" title="IMG_20120903_144743 by fifthstreetjammer, on Flickr"><img src="http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8038/7925767864_5abd20bc3d_c.jpg" width="800" height="600" alt="IMG_20120903_144743"></a>

<a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/sirawesomesauce/7925767488/" title="IMG_20120903_153120 by fifthstreetjammer, on Flickr"><img src="http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8034/7925767488_6a1a335fda_c.jpg" width="800" height="600" alt="IMG_20120903_153120"></a>

<a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/sirawesomesauce/7925766974/" title="IMG_20120903_153257 by fifthstreetjammer, on Flickr"><img src="http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8317/7925766974_eaab97d984_c.jpg" width="600" height="800" alt="IMG_20120903_153257"></a>

<a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/sirawesomesauce/7925766512/" title="IMG_20120903_153318 by fifthstreetjammer, on Flickr"><img src="http://farm9.staticflickr.com/8172/7925766512_508afee57e_c.jpg" width="800" height="600" alt="IMG_20120903_153318"></a>
 
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hebygb

New member
Yes, The holes in the back are most assuredly for a closed loop. Nice tank... good luck with the build.
 

dwolson2

New member
are you going to run closed loop or plug the holes? Just FYI, most people find it more cost effective to plug the holes and use powerheads as opposed to closed loop, but closed loop looks really nice, just costs your wallet a bit more in operating costs.
Looks like a nice tank though!
 

likefish

New member
??? Now sure how using the pressure of your return lines could cost more then powerheads????

Built in multiple returns in the back wall seems like a great setup for ensuring good water movement without multiple powerheads cluttering the walls and requiring power cords and cleaning.

Nice find!!!!!
 

jerpa

Team RC
??? Now sure how using the pressure of your return lines could cost more then powerheads????

Built in multiple returns in the back wall seems like a great setup for ensuring good water movement without multiple powerheads cluttering the walls and requiring power cords and cleaning.

Nice find!!!!!

A closed loop doesnt run off the return. It requires a seperate pump and in terms of watt/GPH powerheads use much less energy. The problem with using closed loop holes for a return is stopping the tank from draining in the event of a power outage. There are many benefits to a closed loop but cost isn't one of them
 

swervesauce

New member
are you going to run closed loop or plug the holes? Just FYI, most people find it more cost effective to plug the holes and use powerheads as opposed to closed loop, but closed loop looks really nice, just costs your wallet a bit more in operating costs.
Looks like a nice tank though!
Thanks for the reply! Yes I thought about plugging them when I first saw it, but a couple things come to mind to use them. 1) My current powerheads (2) won't come close to making decent movement in this tank. 2) Having it already drilled for it is definitely a huge plus, especially for the price I paid! 3) The cost isn't an issue, except for the large up front cost I'm expecting for a pump that is both quiet as heck and will give me a 20x turnover rate, but that's another "find" I'll have to score.

??? Now sure how using the pressure of your return lines could cost more then powerheads????

Built in multiple returns in the back wall seems like a great setup for ensuring good water movement without multiple powerheads cluttering the walls and requiring power cords and cleaning.

Nice find!!!!!

Thanks! I believe it's a heck of a find too! Water movement and minimalist look is a must for me. Also, I wouldn't be using the pressure from my (sump) return lines, if that's what you were referring to. I'd need a separate pump for output and input of those 3 holes, which is what Dwolson was referencing.

i do like closed loop systems

I'm excited! Thanks

A closed loop doesnt run off the return. It requires a seperate pump and in terms of watt/GPH powerheads use much less energy. The problem with using closed loop holes for a return is stopping the tank from draining in the event of a power outage. There are many benefits to a closed loop but cost isn't one of them

You're right about the energy costs, like I said above aren't a concern. However, I'm confused as to what you mean about stopping the tank from draining in the event of a power outage. I'm assuming you mean if I actually did use the return lines on the sump to plumb into the closed loop holes in the back of the tank, and upon said outage, causing the sump to back siphon and drain down to the level of those holes. If that's the case, then no worries because I'm not even thinking about going that route. I will have separate pump for the closed loop, so in the event of a power outage, the closed loop portion wouldn't be affected....or is there something else you meant?

Thanks for the comments guys!
 

swervesauce

New member
Also would like some input for ideas here on the closed loop and overflow. Should I use the three holes for taking water out (into pump) and come over the top with a series of different returns or maybe just the one large for out put and use the 2 accompanied holes for returns and y or t or split however to get a more clean look? I haven't yet decided on a canopy and I dang sure want it clean so plumbing over the top is kind of the last thing I want to do.

As for the overflow...does anyone have a thought about running a modified bean animal?

I also have an idea of cutting into the current overflow and increasing the surface area of the skimming...or may even cut out the current overflows and build a new corner with middle connecting them.

Lots of ideas to throw out there. I'll be gathering up lumber for the stand and hopefully get to fabbing up this thing. Gonna try my hand at Google sketch up for the visual. I have to include a plan or my add will kick in
 

Waddleboy

New member
cutting out the overflows is a pain and you need to be super careful not to cut the main silicone. Doable but a pain. Just run them in bean. Make one a siphon, one a vented and the other an emergency. So i would put siphon emergency in one side. And vented and return in the other.

As for your closed loop i would use the big one as an intake and the other two as outputs. You can build returns out of pvc and make more outputs to split up the flow if you want
 

uncleof6

New member
cutting out the overflows is a pain and you need to be super careful not to cut the main silicone. Doable but a pain. Just run them in bean. Make one a siphon, one a vented and the other an emergency. So i would put siphon emergency in one side. And vented and return in the other.

The siphon and "vented" need to be in the same overflow, otherwise the system will not function properly. The siphon and "open channel" (vented) need to interact--The reason some are bridging the corner overflows, rather than having one active overflow, and one dead overflow--filled with sand for some sort of mini 'dsb.' To interact the siphon and open channel must be in the same body of water...

As for your closed loop i would use the big one as an intake and the other two as outputs. You can build returns out of pvc and make more outputs to split up the flow if you want
 

swervesauce

New member
cutting out the overflows is a pain and you need to be super careful not to cut the main silicone. Doable but a pain. Just run them in bean. Make one a siphon, one a vented and the other an emergency. So i would put siphon emergency in one side. And vented and return in the other.

As for your closed loop i would use the big one as an intake and the other two as outputs. You can build returns out of pvc and make more outputs to split up the flow if you want

Thanks for the input. As for "joining" the overflows, I'm thinking maybe taking a 1/2" piece of PVC and cutting a seam in it at the top and using the semi cut out in each inside top corner of already there overflows to have almost a full skim. I wouldn't cut them out completely as I thought originally.

The siphon and "vented" need to be in the same overflow, otherwise the system will not function properly. The siphon and "open channel" (vented) need to interact--The reason some are bridging the corner overflows, rather than having one active overflow, and one dead overflow--filled with sand for some sort of mini 'dsb.' To interact the siphon and open channel must be in the same body of water...

Thanks uncle. I've seen a lot of your posts and they're quite helpful. Also, what do you think about my above said method of getting more surface skim? Worth it?
 

uncleof6

New member
My thought is regardless of the care required to accomplish the task, cutting out both corner overflows, plugging the existing holes, and drilling out the back of the tank for a BA system, and installing a coast to coast overflow is the best you are going to get. It simply outperforms everything else. I don't think your pvc idea will work out too well.

Lots of talk of closed loops with the other holes in the tank. The thing is with closed loops is you have to get them right the first time. They are static for the most part, and to make them more "dynamic" you end up with contraptions that look just as distracting as power heads. Who is to say the original owner had it right, and IMO, he did not.

The idea is to get even distribution and vertical mixing. Power heads are better at this than closed loops (without turning the tank into a chunk of swiss cheese) and are more flexible. Given the size of pump you need for a closed loop to have a chance, power heads win hands down, and the only advantage to a closed loop, being "no power heads"--however, IMO, the power heads are still needed.

Incidentally, there is no such thing as a modified bean system. The system works as designed. Modifications can cause the system not to function properly, and/or reduce the built in fail safety of the system. All three pipes must be used.
 

dartier

New member
That is a Marineland 125G tank. I was looking at the high version on the weekend (60x18x26). Locally the version with overflows was $350 more than the one without them.

Nice tank!

Dennis
 

swervesauce

New member
My thought is regardless of the care required to accomplish the task, cutting out both corner overflows, plugging the existing holes, and drilling out the back of the tank for a BA system, and installing a coast to coast overflow is the best you are going to get. It simply outperforms everything else. I don't think your pvc idea will work out too well.

Lots of talk of closed loops with the other holes in the tank. The thing is with closed loops is you have to get them right the first time. They are static for the most part, and to make them more "dynamic" you end up with contraptions that look just as distracting as power heads. Who is to say the original owner had it right, and IMO, he did not.

The idea is to get even distribution and vertical mixing. Power heads are better at this than closed loops (without turning the tank into a chunk of swiss cheese) and are more flexible. Given the size of pump you need for a closed loop to have a chance, power heads win hands down, and the only advantage to a closed loop, being "no power heads"--however, IMO, the power heads are still needed.

Incidentally, there is no such thing as a modified bean system. The system works as designed. Modifications can cause the system not to function properly, and/or reduce the built in fail safety of the system. All three pipes must be used.

Thanks for the advice. I like your precise cut and dry info. And since I have a few months worth of building ahead of me (in no rush either) I think I will run the overflow like it is and see how it performs and frankly, if I'm not satisfied, I'm not against at all capping those puppies and drilling for a BA. I laid out some paper towel roll things to see what plumbing the CL would look like on the inside and would actually roll with it for some added flow for dead spots as I don't put my rock up against the back wall all the way, and I currently have an issue with that in my 55. I can design the aquascape in a way to hide the two returns in the back, but as you point out (and the numbers are hard to deny) powerheads win, plain and simple. I won't be causing an ugly build because there are holes there already. I'm running up a layout in sketchup to get a good feel for it before I buy anything. Thanks again, sir!


That is a Marineland 125G tank. I was looking at the high version on the weekend (60x18x26). Locally the version with overflows was $350 more than the one without them.

Nice tank!

Dennis

Yea, it's definitely a steal. The guy didn't know what he had and I happen to be lucky enough to be sitting at home browsing craigslist that day. I was looking at a local custom tank company that is very reasonable and do many mods as you wish and was about to run down and purchase one just like it for $509. Comes RR with hinged glass tops and sch80 bulkheads installed. Another $184 and they were going to put starphire glass on the front and sides, but I came out on top.
 

CarlitosReef

New member
Sub! Would like to see how you upgrade from a 55g. Do you have a standard 55g? I have one as well I plan in drilling the back glass I heard it has been tried before and the only glass that is tempered should be the bottom.


What are you going to do with your 55g and stand? So how much did you pay for the 125g? lol
 
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swervesauce

New member
Sub! Would like to see how you upgrade from a 55g. Do you have a standard 55g? I have one as well I plan in drilling the back glass I heard it has been tried before and the only glass that is tempered should be the bottom.


What are you going to do with your 55g and stand?

Yes, I have a standard 55g and it's nice. I had a custom stand made for it about 10 years ago and have moved quite often and had to tear down\rebuild too many times. It came out of storage this last move back in April and is up and going now. You are correct about the bottom only being tempered (in most 55g) but there's always a chance. If you don't see a sticker and are not sure just contact the OEM and they'll let you know. There's also a polarized sunglasses and laptop screen test (google it) that you can try. I am also pretty dang excited to be going up to this beauty!

I will be keeping the 55g and maybe converting it to a biotope design (plants and fish from same region) which seems like a nice challenge and pleasant to recreate. However, I just picked up a 20g long for QT at Petco's $1 a gallon sale and may scoop up another 55g if I can find one in stock. You really can't ever have too many tanks!
 
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