Critique my Sump Design

ChemE

New member
Sump_Plan.png


I'm planning on having Glasscages.com build this for me and would like to collect feedback before I commit to the design. This is going to be a low flow sump for my 190 gallon tank. Target flow through the sump will be (190-275) gph. All underflow baffles are 1" off the bottom and the gap between the final O/U is 1".

The inlet section has a removable lid (for easier cleaning) which will hold 3 4" 100 micron filter socks. Flow then underflows into the skimmer section.

The skimmer section is sized in order to give me a few options on future upgrades. This section is plenty large enough to hold an ATI Bubble Master 200 and a Phosban reactor. Should I need to, there is also enough room to squeeze in an additional Phosban reactor and a H&S SR110 Nitrate/Sulfur Reactor. Water overflows out of this section into the RDSB section.

The RDSB section will start out with a 14" remote deep sand bed. If this proves unable to maintain the system nitrates at or below 10ppm it will be siphoned out and a nitrate reactor will be added to the skimmer section. The RDSB section will then be used for live rock rubble/pod production or whatever (suggestions especially welcome here). Water overflows/underflows into the return section.

The final underflow baffle is added to prevent water from splashing into the return section. This splashing could produce bubbles which are sucked up by the return pump and returned to the display as microbubbles. The return section is large enough to accommodate an Eheim Hobby 1250 and if this isn't enough flow to keep the display surface clear of surface active proteins, I can bump the return pump up to an Eheim Hobby 1260 which also fits in the return section. Water level in the return section will be maintained with an automatic top off system which is as yet to be determined.

The reserve capacity in the sump is sufficient to allow the display to drain 1.25" without overflowing the sump. The return line will have 4 siphon breaks drilled about 0.5" below the water level so the chances of a flood should be about as low as is possible.

Comments and suggestions are welcome!

Download the Google SketchUp Model
 
Last edited:

OO7

New member
I think the general flow looks great, but personally, I would want much more than 2" of overflow . . . even it it is 7 gallons. I would want that have at least 2" AFTER the overflow from the tank as a safety margin.

In other words, I'd drop each of the baffles down by an inch or inch and a half. Each inch you take off will add another 3 gallons of overflow capacity.
 

reef165

New member
also i would make the returne section abought 15 gal and the RDSB smaller, you dont want to overflow your sump when the power goes out.
 

ChemE

New member
<a href=showthread.php?s=&postid=9274007#post9274007 target=_blank>Originally posted</a> by reef165
also i would make the returne section abought 15 gal and the RDSB smaller, you dont want to overflow your sump when the power goes out.

The underflow baffle just before the return section does not come up to the top of the sump. This guarantees that in the event of a power outage/brownout/flicker backflow from the display will fill the entire sump not just the return section.

A larger return section leads to larger salinity swings before the ATO replenished the evaporated water.
 

BeanAnimal

Premium Member
What size display? Salintiy swings are not an issue... You can do the math if you want, but on a system with ~100 gallons you can evaporate a substantial amount and not worry about it.

I would space the baffles 2" or so apart. I like to be able to get my hand between them. I too would drop the baffle height another inch or three. You never know what you are going to add later that could cause more backflow.

I would add a drain to the top inch or so of the sump and plumb it to the sewer if possible.

Now here is the issue I have with the sump. The top of your filter socks hang at the same height as the water level in the sump. This means that gracity will not force water though the socks, but free channel flow will. If the socks resist any flow, they will "overflow". You can fix this by building a small "intake tower" to hang the socks in. Raise the tops maybe 1/3 of the sock height above the water? You also need to ensure that there is an overflow or spillway to allow the socks to overflow into the sump of they become clogged up for any reason. In the current setup you would want the sock tray an 1" lower than the sump rim but higher than the highest over baffle :) With the intake tower design you would add extra hole to the sock tray and build a 1" high lip around the tray so that if the socks overfill the water will still drain through the tray into the sump.

Bean
 

Chappy

New member
I agree with the above statements. If the filter socks are kept the way they are, you are going to have to change them out very frequently. Otherwise they will clog and water will come out the top.

I really don't see the need for the first baffle. It really doesn't do a lot.

I would definately increase the size of the return. Don't worry about the salinity swing like Bean said.

If you are going to use an ATO from a RODI unit directly, you will want a bigger return so it is not turning on and off frequently. You will get more TDS creep that way. I didn't really think it would be a problem with mine, but it is. My return is 3 times your return and my ATO turns on too much. TDS went way up.

I would also decrease the height of your baffles. Right now when your power goes out, you only have about 3 gallons of reserve in your return before it starts to fill your entire sump. That gets scary. I have almost overflowed mine and I have a lot more room than you do.

If you haven't gone to Melev's site, do! It is a great site with proven designs.
 

ChemE

New member
<a href=showthread.php?s=&postid=9275228#post9275228 target=_blank>Originally posted</a> by Chappy
...If you are going to use an ATO from a RODI unit directly, you will want a bigger return so it is not turning on and off frequently. You will get more TDS creep that way. I didn't really think it would be a problem with mine, but it is. My return is 3 times your return and my ATO turns on too much. TDS went way up...

I'm hip to TDS creep. I'm going to modify a 20 gallon acrylic tank to be an anti TDS storage container and top off the sump from it. This will help to mitigate TDS creep.

I've been to Melev's sump site, it is a very good resource.
 

Chappy

New member
Perfect, then the only thing you should really worry about is if your calculations are right about the reserve capacity. Your the engineer, I can't do those calculations. I work in milimeters. Gallons throw me way off!
 

fours2many

New member
Bubblemaster 200 can only sit in 6-8" of water. It works best in 6". If your baffles are that high, are you building a stand for the skimmer to sit on? If not, you need to make the baffles much lower.

Kristin
 

BeanAnimal

Premium Member
I use a 7 gallon pail for my top-off resevoir. It feeds the sump via a float valve. The setup is somewhat complicated, but it would take a 3 point failure to put more than 5 gallons of water into my tank or on my floor.

Bean
 

ChemE

New member
<a href=showthread.php?s=&postid=9275618#post9275618 target=_blank>Originally posted</a> by BeanAnimal
Ohh... I would also eurobrace it :)

You really think its worth it? I've never had an acrylic tank so I don't know how much 1/2" acrylic deflects across a 48" run. Revised design coming later tonight with all the suggestions...
 

atvdave

Premium Member
ChemE.. What I'm doing is...

I got a 65 Gal acrylic tank from GlassGages, (they where at a frag swap near by) that I'm turning into a sump.

It has the black bracing in top the tank so will not bow. I'm going to cut and glue the baffles in myself and turn my old 20gal sump into a fug and run them side by side.

I'm going to make my filter sock holder out of 1/2" PVC pipe and just hang them off of that.

This it the flow will be like.

Sorry.. no pictures.

from tank through the filter socks, next 2 baffles plates, next the skimmer section, next a filter tray with egg crate, next 3 baffles to stop bubbles, then into my return section.

My fug will get a small flow from the main tank return from the PVC pipe with a ball valve to control the input flow, them I'll drill a hole into the wall and use a bulkhead filling for the return into the main sump return section.
 

ChemE

New member
Design Revision

Design Revision

Sump_Plan_v2.png


I cut the baffle thickness down to 1/4" to take back a little volume in the sump and reduce raw material costs. The baffles have been moved so that there is 2" between the final underflow and overflow baffles. Also all underflow baffles are 2" off the bottom instead of 1". Also as most of you suggested, I reduced the height of the overflow baffles to allow for more backflow capacity. I'll build a short (3"-5") stand for the BM200 out of acrylic in order to assure it only sits in 6"-8" of water.

Thoughts on eurobracing? Isn't it going to make it more of a pain to get into the sump and do maintenance? How wide should the eurobracing be?
 

BeanAnimal

Premium Member
I am not sure if you need the bracing, I just like to add it anyway :)

My sump is almost that same size, but closer to 24 or so high and I do not have the baffles setup like that. Only one end has a full length baffle. I used 2" uerobracing. Likely overkill, but it made me feel better for the long haul.

I never thought about filter socks and have considered adding a filter sock holder and chute to the outside of the sump (hard to explain). I just can not convince myself I need it.
 

hahnmeister

In Memoriam
Why not just have a cross brace? Eurobracing is when you dont want a cross-brace... because you want to put a pendant there, or something like that. A cross brace in this case would Git-R-Done and allow for more access really... a single strip of 3" wide acrylic down the center is nothing compared to a 2-3" parimeter all around the tank. I suppose its acrylic, so you might just have to do both... but wait... why would you even? With it only being 17" high, only 2/3rds of that being water, and all those baffles cemented into place acting as cross-braces... I dont know that you even need supports across the top. You might want to compare with some of melev's sump designs or ask him, but I dont think you even need supports across the top.

The only other thing is kind of a major design element and subject to personal pref. anyways... but that return section seems sorta small. I like to run phosban/carbon in there, probes, heaters... etc... stuff you dont really have room for elsewhere... so just a consideration.
 

BeanAnimal

Premium Member
I did not use a cross brace because I wanted the top fully open for large rock, floating bags, a skimmer, or whatetever else I needed. The sump was large enough that the eurobrace does not get in my way. I am not sure I even needed it... but I would have been bothered by even 1/8" of bow. I hate stuff not coming out exactly like I plan it.
 

ChemE

New member
<a href=showthread.php?s=&postid=9276643#post9276643 target=_blank>Originally posted</a> by hahnmeister
...The only other thing is kind of a major design element and subject to personal pref. anyways... but that return section seems sorta small. I like to run phosban/carbon in there, probes, heaters... etc... stuff you dont really have room for elsewhere... so just a consideration.

Thanks Hahn but I made the skimmer section large enough for the BM200, 2 Phosban reactors (1 of which just got ordered from ReefGeek), and an H&S SR 110 Nitrate/Sulfur reactor. I wanted to keep the return section no larger than was necessary to house an Eheim Hobby pump and a Kent float valve.
 

sjm817

On Yer left!
Premium Member
GC will want to put bracing on it. I had them build me a sump awhile back. The new design looks a lot better than the original and I agree with the changes.

I will caution you on the GC sump. On mine, the build quality was great but...
BE VERY EXPLICIT IN WHAT YOU WANT BUILT.
I was and they still built it wrong. I had to modify it which was a real pain.
 

ChemE

New member
<a href=showthread.php?s=&postid=9276771#post9276771 target=_blank>Originally posted</a> by sjm817
GC will want to put bracing on it. I had them build me a sump awhile back. The new design looks a lot better than the original and I agree with the changes.

I will caution you on the GC sump. On mine, the build quality was great but...
BE VERY EXPLICIT IN WHAT YOU WANT BUILT.
I was and they still built it wrong. I had to modify it which was a real pain.

Thanks for the heads up sjm817. I already emailed GC and asked if they would work from the SketchUp file since there is zero ambiguity and they can pull any dimension they need right off the file. They tentatively agreed to take a look at it and see if they could figure it out so here's to hoping. If they can't/won't work off it I'll send over fully dimensioned front, top, left, and isometric perspectives.
 
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