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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey Guys,

A guy on craigslist posted a "blue ball filter thingy" for 10 bucks so I went to meet him. I was expecting to get a deal on a sump, but what he had was actually one of those all-in-one reef tanks where the tank and the filter are built in the same unit. Its basically a 3 compartment system:
1. The aquarium part in front where you would keep fish
2. The prefilter section
3. The bioball/sump section.

What I was thinking about doing is putting this under my 75 and using it as a wed/dry filter and refugium. I would have the 75 drain into the #1 portion of this filter tank, which would then drain and filter into these other compartments. The pump would sit in the sump portion and pump back to the 75.

Lastly, there is a hole in the divider between the #1 and #3 sections I would need to plug, this is I think where the output from the sump is intended to go. I'm not sure what I would plug it with.

Am I crazy or would this work?




 

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What to plug a hole with. You install a bulkhead fitting sized for the hole and the inside of the fitting is threaded. Screw a matching plastic threaded plug into the fitting for a water tight seal. If you just want to slow down the flow and don't care if it leaks a little, you can scrunch an old sponge filter into a ball and insert it in the hole. In some cases and I think this is one, a little leakage can be good to equalise water levels if some other connection gets blocked.

Ideally a refugium is above the main tank so that water from it can overflow into the main tank. That way food animals reproducing in the refugium will oveflow into the main tank without being chopped up by passing through the rotor vanes of a pump motor. But if your fish don't mind eating chopped critters or you are not growing food animals in it, the refugium can be under the main or alongside it.

The wet/dry is sized for the front of the tank so if you add 75 gallons more, it may not be big enough. Having another filter, or adding filter media to the refugium to convert it completely or partly is needed unless you plan a very light fish load.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I do have another filter on the tank, a fluval 304 which I think is rated for a 70 gal tank, but I like the sump for the purpose of constant water level, protein skimming, and the refugeum would be cool.

If I use the refugeum for producing food, I could put filter felt across the teeth that the refugeum spills into the sump to keep critters where they are supposed to be.

A couple other questions I though of: The drip plate above the bioball chamber is missing, what would be the best material to make that out of? Also, if I use it as a refugeum, it will be inside the cabinet, should I put some light in there?
 

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Maybe I'm missing something but why aren't you setting this up as another tank? It's already got a filter built in so the only cost would be to purchase a powerhead (it looks like it would attach to the hole you are wanting to plug.) Add water and let it cycle and you'd have a neat little fry tank, hospital tank, livebearer tank, or whatever you can think of to fill it up.

I'd rather have an extra tank than a sump unless the sump were for an extra tank that didn't have a filter.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Its a little rough to have it be another tank, and a little small.
 

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There are other fish in this world besides CA cichlids that need 125g tanks...

If the acrylic is scratched I guess it's not much good for anything but a sump, scratches can be buffed out though if you've got the patience. There's a member of our fish club who got a really good deal on a 300g that was pretty scratched, she's still working on polishing it but the areas that are done look pretty nice.

I'm not sure that you'll be able to use the trickle filter built in to the tank as part of a sump, to me it looks like the only way the trickle filter will work is if the water level in the main part of the tank is within about an inch from the top of the tank. That doesn't leave much room for overflow if the power goes out and a little bit of water has to drain out of the tank into the sump.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Yeah, I'm not the most patient person when it comes to spending hours buffing. I love the "other fish in the sea' that's awesome. I might go to a lot of trouble to salvage a 300, but not a 15-20. I didn't think of how much it will hold from the big tank in a power failure. I'll have to do some checking to see if it will overflow.
 

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kornphlake said:
There are other fish in this world besides CA cichlids that need 125g tanks...

If the acrylic is scratched I guess it's not much good for anything but a sump, scratches can be buffed out though if you've got the patience. There's a member of our fish club who got a really good deal on a 300g that was pretty scratched, she's still working on polishing it but the areas that are done look pretty nice.
No offense to tannable but he's right in using this for a sump cause it seems like such a waste of a fish tank cause its so small and roughed up. I could and did make a tank twice that size and a whole lot better looking for probably the same price he paid for it. looks great for a sump though, all set up for yah.

also tannable, i might also think about going bigger on the sump or making a double sump although if you keep that fluval yer fine. i always think bigger is better :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Well, I got it installed this weekend. I decided to add it to my growout/breeding setup. I have two 10 gallon tanks on a shelf in my heater room and I plumbed them to dump into this tank and then the pump puts it back into the 10s. I just have the one heater and pump for all three tanks. It works pretty good and it basically added another tank for growout.

Here's a couple pics. You can see the black tubing coming down from the 10 gallon tanks and the clear is going back up. There is a manifold where I can control flow to each tank.


 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Thanks. I think the only modification I may still make is to extend the black tubes to input on the right side of the tank. The tank overflows on the left side and I'd get better turnover if the water went through the tank from one side to the other.
 
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