Sump Filter and Overflow Box for a 55 gallon tank

  • natelogston
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natelogston created the topic: Sump Filter and Overflow Box for a 55 gallon tank

I have a magnum 350 canister filter for my 55 gallon tank with only 1 oscar. I know that's probably sufficient filtration (at least it was years ago when I kept 1 happy oscar), but I really just have an itch to build my own sump filter and overflow. Plus I know how beneficial it can be for a small oscar tank with that kind of bio load. So I am tinkering and have partially built that but am very nervous about it. I'm especially nervous about flooding and overflow not re-siphoning after a power outage. I've read and read about it but will take any "do's or don'ts that I can get. I'm going with and inexpensive pvc and rubbermaid solution. Do open trickle sumps create a bad odor? I would love any tidbits on success for any aspects of this topic.
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free3tbzz replied the topic: Re: Sump Filter and Overflow Box for a 55 gallon tank

good luck to you. i plan on following this one closely. i would like to build my own system myself for my setup as well

cheers
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  • Hexclover
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Hexclover replied the topic: Re: Sump Filter and Overflow Box for a 55 gallon tank

i dont see the point in a sump filter on such a small tank... you would be better off with your canister filter and maybe a HOB as well.
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free3tbzz replied the topic: Re: Sump Filter and Overflow Box for a 55 gallon tank

i beleive hes trying to make his gallon count higher by adding a 20 gallon sump...hes adding almost 50% to his tank
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natelogston replied the topic: Re: Sump Filter and Overflow Box for a 55 gallon tank

That's right. The point in the project is threefold. Most importantly (as free3tbzz said), I want to increase the amount of water being used in the system to help the quality, realizing that 55 gallons for an oscar isn't much water. Secondarily, I just want the experience of building and understanding a sump and overflow. Lastly, I want to get the heater out of the tank to make the most of the 55 gallon real estate. I know it may not be necessary but it surely can't hurt, and I've always heard the more water you can add to the system, the better it is for the inhabitants. At the end of the day, I may be using 80 gallons (or more) instead of 55. It's a large rubbermaid tub and a rubbermaid drawer stack I'm putting to use. Really, the reason for my post is to learn from those who have built their own overflows/sumps. I want to dodge sure fire mistakes, avoid overflow problems, and hear about things such as noise level and odor caused by the systems. I actually may still use my canister as a polisher or carbon filter in addition.
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natelogston replied the topic: Re: Sump Filter and Overflow Box for a 55 gallon tank

So I have the system built and ran it through some tests today with trashcans. everything works fine except my pump seems to be going too fast for my overflow. that's obviously the opposite of what i want to happen. i hate to rebuild the overflow but i may have to. i don't want to downgrade my pump because it's a good one and i figure i'm getting between 300 and 400 gph from it. i currently use 3/4" pvc for the u-tube siphon on the overflow. from what i've read, that should be ok for my mag-5 pump, but it's not keeping up. i think i have three options: (1. close the valve some on the return although i don't want to as i think it may be bad for the pump and obviously not as much cycling for the tank 2. build a second 3/4" overflow and run it to the sump as well to double the overflow capacity or 3. scrap the 3/4 overflow and upgrade to a 1 1/2.

Any thoughts?
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free3tbzz replied the topic: Re: Sump Filter and Overflow Box for a 55 gallon tank

natelogston wrote: So I have the system built and ran it through some tests today with trashcans. everything works fine except my pump seems to be going too fast for my overflow. that's obviously the opposite of what i want to happen. i hate to rebuild the overflow but i may have to. i don't want to downgrade my pump because it's a good one and i figure i'm getting between 300 and 400 gph from it. i currently use 3/4" pvc for the u-tube siphon on the overflow. from what i've read, that should be ok for my mag-5 pump, but it's not keeping up. i think i have three options: (1. close the valve some on the return although i don't want to as i think it may be bad for the pump and obviously not as much cycling for the tank 2. build a second 3/4" overflow and run it to the sump as well to double the overflow capacity or 3. scrap the 3/4 overflow and upgrade to a 1 1/2.

Any thoughts?


hey sorry i dont have much to offer...but it sounds like the testing has gone pretty good so far....i would tinker around and try whats easiest to do first...save yourself a trip to the hardware store....if you have more tubing then just run another line and double up...if that doesnt work then its time to try something else.
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Gazza replied the topic: Re: Sump Filter and Overflow Box for a 55 gallon tank

Don't make things hard for yourself :)

Just in case I got it wrong :pinch: I fitted ball valves to to feeds and return to the sump ( a submersible pump can be throttled back buy the ball valve)

But mine are all @ full open 3 x 1" overflow bulkheads 1 x 1" return and a 4500lt per hr pump

sumps can be noisy :blink: but in a nice way gentle gurgle very calming :)
and not noticeable till it stops :woohoo:

Which brings me to Question about flooding simple test have your sump running @ full capacity and turn off your pump :silly: watch your sump level with a finger or friend ready to turn the pump back on asap if it looks like flooding :pinch:

I was surprised mine didn't :woohoo:

If it does drill an 1 " overflow hole for a bulk head just below the rim of your sump and plumb it some where safe ,drain outside etc

and finally do sumps stink :sick:

NO MORE THAN YOUR TANK :silly: :pinch:

I clean sump will not stink unless you neglect to clean the primary chamber when needed B)

hope that shed's some light :)

I have heaps of diy threads on here about sumps All packed with great info from other members :) :)
I was a sump virgin when I joined OFL but with the help and advise I got :)
now I'm a Tart :silly: :silly: :silly:

Gaz

The purpose of life’s journey is not to arrive at the grave with a well-preserved body, but rather to Slide in Sideways, completely used up, yelling and screaming, what a ride!
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free3tbzz replied the topic: Re: Sump Filter and Overflow Box for a 55 gallon tank

lol ill definatly be picking away at some of those threads...this is something i really would love to add to my setup
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  • natelogston
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natelogston replied the topic: Re: Sump Filter and Overflow Box for a 55 gallon tank

thanks! this is great input. 3" back to 1" in sounds about right. i now have 2 x 3/4" overflows and one 3/4" return hooked up to a mag 5. they still can't quite keep up with the mag 5 pump but it is hooked up to a ball valve. if i throttle back some, it seems to do fine on my test setup in the bathroom. today i drained it all and began to set it up in my aquarium only to find out a measured wrong!!!! that person who said "measure twice and cut once" was really on to something. very frustrating. i picked up some more pvc tonight and will have to rebuild a couple of parts. i really wanted to be able to run the pump at full capacity but i don't want to run an additional overflow or downgrade the pump so i guess throttling back will have to do. i've been told it's not harmful to the pump by one very reputable source and that it is harmful by several online sources, so we'll see :) i'd rather have a pump fail, than an overflow fail.

awesome advice though about running an overflow from the sump. that will set my mind at ease if i can figure out where to run it.
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