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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I recently acquired a 125G system that was salt but I am setting up for freshwater. The filtration has a CPR dual surface skimmer which dumps into a 30G Aquarium refugium. It has basically three chambers. The first is a deep intake chamber that spills when it reaches about 4 inches from the top of the tank into the second chamber. The second chamber is about half the depth of the first chamber and discharges into a down and up section to reach the final return chamber where the Mag pump sits.

I am considering redesigning this thing to be more of a wet/dry filter and I have only a slight understanding of what I need to do. The current setup is homemade with acrylic panels siliconed into place.

My first thought is to remove the first panel which creates the first chamber and raise it so the water runs out the bottom of that chamber into the second chamber. Obviously this would only lower the depth in the first chamber to be equivalent to the depth of the second chamber. It should allow me to place some racks in the first chamber (at least one decent rack) to place the bio balls and possibly a pre-filter drip tray.

If anyone would like to help with this conceptually or have any ideas I will provide more details and information. If I can post pictures from my computer I would be glad to do that also. (not sure if I can or how) If you think this is a bad idea - that's useful input also. :)

Thanks!
 

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honestly, I'd simply set it up as is but like a wet dry... the benefits of a wet dry over as-is will be so minimal that it just doesnt add up IMHO
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
That would certainly be easier. I would just need to figure out how to set up the filter media. It had live rock, gravel and some bioballs before. Not sure what I would do with the deep first chamber. Is a gravel and rock in center chamber arrangement beneficial? I could put a lot of bio balls in first chamber I guess. They wouldn't get much circulation. There is a UV sterilizer on the return. Not sure the purpose of a deep chamber even in the refugium. There would be more water movement in the center chamber.
 

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the biggest reason for it's current design is to kill all bubbles and prevent your corals being killed off by microbubbles. My preference is to put a sock or sponge or filterfloss in the first chamber to mechanically clean the water. In the second chamber is where I use whatever fits... or nothing.
In the last chamber (with the pump) is where I sometimes put potted plants, rocks, etc if it can fit in beside the pump. An algae scrubber might be a fun addition!

Lot's of choices really, without the work of disassembly! :thumb:
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
The way this had been set up is the two incoming water dump lines where connected to a pvc bar with holes drilled. Kinda like a spray bar with not much pressure. I think this sat close to the surface of the first chamber. First question - do you think it would be better to extend the incoming water to the bottom or deeper into the first chamber? I'm trying to figure out how to filter the incoming water. There are sponge filters on the top surface skimmer in the main tank around the intake holes. The surface skimmer is a CS-102. I have plenty of 1" pvc fitting and pipe so playing with the discharge into the refugium would not be a problem. I could easily put a sponge block before the last chamber to add mechanical filtration and stop anything (like bioballs) from stacking up toward the back of the middle chamber or moving into the down and up between the middle and last chamber.

I have way more limerock and coral rock than I would use in the main tank or the refugium. This system came with some strange black rough rock like stuff (large chunks) that is porous and actually wants to float. No idea what this stuff is. It was used in the sump. Maybe in the center section start with a gravel bed then rocks and bio balls? Or I could just get more bio balls and fill the center section?

Sorry about all the questions. I have a basic wet/dry with trays in my 55G Malawi tank which I understand but this is new to me. I have some time to deal with this while I clean everything well, see what's working, what's not working, what needs repair and having a stand built. Hope to have this puppy setup within a couple of weeks for a Tropheus colony.

Thanks you - your input is helping! :)
 

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I do tend to extend the piping deeper for freshwater tanks simply to avoid the splashing sounds... not needed though.

I don't recognize the rough black rock like stuff from the description. There are rocks like that... feather rock is one. Google pics and see if it's the same.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Some of the feather rock pictures do look like this stuff. It is dark grey with some lines in it. Looks like someone started to saw on piece as there is a blade line going partially into one chunk.

I might try to find filter socks to dump the water through as it goes in the first chamber. I want some more pre-filter action going on I think. A sponge block between the last two chambers should keep the pump chamber clean.
 
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