Skatezen's 75 gallon - SPS Dominated Tank

skatezen

New member
I've never done a build thread before so I figured this would be a great way to document my tanks growth and development. This tank has spent a long time on the drawing board almost 2 years and I can't believe it's finally come to fruition. There has just been so much that has prohibited the start up of my system, mainly finishing the basement, other relatively large house related projects, a new job and I managed to squeeze in marriage. I'm actually kind of glad I was able to take my time with the planning on this one. I've decided to go bare bottom and there will not be any sand anywhere in the system initially.

System description:
75 gallon Display/Custom stand and canopy
70 gallon rubbermaid stock tank - Sump
40 gallon breeder - Frag Tank
37 gallon - Flow through which will be used for water changes and added water volume

Total gallons 222

Flow:
Sequence Dart - 3600gph on a closed loop through a Calfo style manifold with 8 - 1" outlets

Velocity T4 (1300 gph) split between my frag tank and the display. About 400 - 500 gph will be used for the return. The rest will be routed to the frag tank where it will enter through an OM Squirt

Total flow 58x

Lighting:
2 250w XM 10K's on Icecap Ballasts with Lumenarc Mini's
2 54w T5s actinics D&D Blue+ bulbs

Skimmer:
Mesh/Venturi/Volute/1" Outlet Modded Reef Octopus Recirc DNW-200 <- This thing's a beast! The skimmer will be directly fed from my overflow which spans the whole length of the 4' tank.

Additional Filtration:
Phosban reactor
Carbon reactor

Ca & Alk:
CA Reactor
Kalk Reactor

I will be posting pictures as the system develops as I should have everything completed tomorrow
 

skatezen

New member
Need some advice...Can anyone find a disadvantage to plumb my overflow to my skimmer this way? I have 2 drains on the right coming from my overflow for redundancy . The pipe along the wall is slightly pitched. I don't have the huge "drop" that you usually see in most tanks from the overflow to the skimmer/sump.

37187Durso.jpg
 

reefarchitect

New member
My only concern would be with the horizontal distance and a possible resistance on the flow rate. Although, as you intend to split the T4 to the frag tank as well, it should not be an issue.

From personal experience, be careful with the heat output of the T4. I have one and attempted to use it on a closed loop, it raised the tank temp by almost 2 degrees on a 180.

I thought it might just have been me, so I gave it to a friend for his closed loop. A week later, the pump was back in my closet.
 

Dave VG

New member
How much flow is the overflow and skimmer rated for? If they are in the same ballpark you will be ok. If not and the flow is more than the skimmer is rated for then there could be an issue. If it is an issue and it was me I would split the two and run one to sump and one to the skimmer. That way you could control the flow to the skimmer. If the skimmer gets to much flow it will not have time to skim at peak efficiency.
 

skatezen

New member
Thanks guys for your input.

I'm not overly concerned about the heat given off by the T4. About 150 gallons of the total system water is located in my garage which is currently a nice 65 degrees. Granted it is 30° out, but I don't for see this being too much of a problem during the warmer months T4s are great pumps aside from the fact they are water cooled and give off so much heat

The skimmer can handle the flow. My worry was the vertical distance That there wouldn't be much, if any, back pressure to "push" the water through.
 

skatezen

New member
So if anyone was following this thread you may know that I was planning on updating it with pictures of my progress this weekend. In the process of plumbing everything all together I tripped over the power cord to one of my powerheads in inadvertently aiming it directly at the glass of my very low hanging 250w Aquamedic Oceanlight. Can anyone guess what happened next?

Well the glass cracked and fell into the sump which was holding all my livestock. My initial reaction was to reach into the tank to fix the powerhead, I'm glad I didn't because I would have received quite a shock. After I got everything all shut down I began to pull the chards of glass out of the sump a couple of pieces fell into the orifice of my clam. Hopefully it will be ok and purge the glass without causing any internal damage.

I did mange to start the leak test on my tank, which failed miserably. One of the bulkheads was leaking and I can't easily get to it to swap it out. I won't be able to really get back into the plumbing until this weekend. So I'm going to start wiring up the lights tonight hopefully that will go much smoother.
 

skatezen

New member
After completing my system I have encountered a couple of problems one is that the vertical drop away from the tank is important in "pulling" water out of the overflow. You can see wher it come through the wall just to the right of the OM Squirt below the ballasts. Initially I was going for the nice gentle flow directly into the skimmer, but this isn't working out too well. Currently their is only about 4"-6" of vertical travel before the water hits the skimmer. My plan to remedy this is to lower the skimmer, but that kind of screws up everything for me. You can see the issue in the pictures below.

The second problem is that I am getting a lot of micro bubbles. Which is easily fixable, I just need time to build some sort of bubble trap.


Right now the water flows like this Display tank->Skimmer->Flow through->Sump-> then tee-ed one line to the frag tank in the picture and one through the wall to the display.

RODI
37187DSCF1498.JPG


Frag
37187DSCF1499.JPG


Display- Disregard the water level I had to fix a leaky bulkhead
37187DSCF1484.JPG

Any suggestions to easily fix this with out going and ripping my stands out?
 

deep6er

New member
Looks good. Cant wait to see more pictures. I do have 1 question for you.
your tank is going to look nice on the outside why did you decide to not have the returns drilled into the tank. You are going to see the pvc everywhere
 

skatezen

New member
Thanks for the comments. You actually don't see much of the lines in the display tank. only about 1/2" or so because I built the canopy to cover the black rim and about 3/4' below the rim to his the plumbing.
 

ricks

New member
Nice build...

A couple of questions? How easy is the access to your tank with the low lights and all the plumbing on top of the tank?? Also how much will those halides heat up the water with the PVC right below them. Are you running a chiller?

Happy Reefing
 

skatezen

New member
It's relatively easy to get into the tank with the lights the way they are. I just have to remove the front T5. The Lumenarcs can also be raised a few inches if I need more access space.

As far as heat is concerned it's currently not an issue. I don't know if my heaters are kicking on during the day or not, but the temp swing yesterday (first day running was a high of 80.3 with a low of 79.5) I put the sump directly on the cement which is 65 degrees year round to help with the cooling. I may even add sandbox 3"-4" around it to act as a heat sync to draw heat away from the stock tank. I don't know how effective this will turn out to be, but every little bit helps. I can't speak for the warmer months as of yet, but we'll cross that bridge when I get to it. If need be I will buy a chiller and vent it directly out side.
 

mattiej

New member
That is a very clean build and impressive thought given to lay out. Have you seen any issues with the overflow and the slope of the drain pipe? Looks as is the horizontal distance is not too great to cause much head pressure for you.

Again great job and keep us posted! :cool:
 

skatezen

New member
<a href=showthread.php?s=&postid=11786443#post11786443 target=_blank>Originally posted</a> by mattiej
That is a very clean build and impressive thought given to lay out. Have you seen any issues with the overflow and the slope of the drain pipe? Looks as is the horizontal distance is not too great to cause much head pressure for you.

Yes there is an issue with the flow going to the skimmer, but I don't think that it has to do with the horizontal travel or the slope of the horizontal line. I think the problem is the fact that there is little vertical drop from the tank to the beginning of that horizontal line. I guess the best way to explain it is:

Ever notice how when you siphon say a trash barrel full of water and as the 2 water surfaces become closer and closer the flow slows...Well the same thing is happening here. The surface level in the overflow is only about 6" higher than the water level in the skimmer. I also noticed that when I raise the height of the water in the skimmer it backs up into the tank.

This is obviously a problem which I need to fix. I can accomplish this by lowering the skimmer, but I'd also have to figure out a way to reincorporate the flow though/water change tank.
 

reefarchitect

New member
<a href=showthread.php?s=&postid=11783628#post11783628 target=_blank>Originally posted</a> by skatezen
Any suggestions to easily fix this with out going and ripping my stands out?

This may seem a bit unorthodox, but consider placing a cap over the current intake of the skimmer and using a uniseal to place the water inlet lower on the body. Possibly to the right of the intake for the recirculating pump. Not only would this solve or significantly improve your vertical drop issue, it would also increase the contact time for new water entering the skimmer as it will be immediately aspirated by the pump.
 
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