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Results 1 to 7 of 7
  1. Default DIY 45 Gallon Sump

    0 Not allowed!
    Im currently building a acrylic 45 Gallon Summp for a 100 Gallon custom Acrylic African Cichlid tank. Here is my idea. It is a version of the ecosystem sump/refugium with freshwater miracle mudd in the refugium.
    Planning 2 4inch filter socks suspended over bioballs then flow to refugium. Out of refugium through sponge in between baffles out to return area. Sound good or Should I change things up. Cant see paying $500-$800 for a ecosystem sump. Included photos of biuld. Nothing is cemented yet.

  2. #2


    0 Not allowed!
    I've never made a FW sump, so my only suggestion would be to make it hold as much water as possible while still leaving room for drainback should you have a powerfailure or your return pump dies.

    The below link is for SW sumps, but it would likely give you a few more ideas
    If you take your time to do the research FIRST, you can successfully set-up and keep ANY type of aquarium with ease.
    "Not using a quarantine tank is like playing Russian roulette. Nobody wins the game, some people just get to play longer than others." - Anthony Calfo
    Fishless Cycle Cycling with Fish Marine Aquarium Info [URL=""]

  3. Default

    0 Not allowed!
    Thanks that was a very informative link!

  4. #4


    0 Not allowed!
    I hate sumps on freshwater, just get a Fluval FX5. It is more effective (no open system can compare to the mechanical capacity of a closed canister).

    If you go ahead with the sump:
    1-Never go all the way to the top with baffles. If the 1" gap is blocked you flood. This is unlikely but possible. Always leave a 1" gap above baffles as a 'worst case oh crap' backup plan.
    2-Don't use bioballs. Just leave the space under the filter socks empty. Bioballs just create extra work for you and/or become a nitrate factory.
    3-Miracle mud can be a pain in sw, and is not beneficial in fw. No substrate.
    4-The nutrient production in fw is much greater than in sw and therefore refugiums can have a much smaller impact. In fw it is very easy to do larger weekly water changes which are 100x better than a refugium (water changes are always the main goal).
    5-No sponge after refugium. This is a good way to clog it and cause a flood or at least another thing for you to maintain or else it becomes a nitrate factory.

    Like I said, I would save myself a lot of hassle (and probably money) and just go with a Fluval FX5.
    Aquarist since 1995
    Biologist and Published Author in Multiple Aquarium Magazines
    Owner: Aquarium Maintenance Company
    Advanced Aquarium Concepts: Articles about many aspects of aquarium care.

  5. Default

    0 Not allowed!
    I know this is a rather old thread but I wanted to comment about sump filtration systems for anyone searching.

    IMO sump systems are way superior to canister systems for two main reasons.
    1. Amount of media you can place in them (of course depending on your size sump tank) can be HUGE.
    2. Extra water volume. I don't know of any canister system that can hold 10+ gallons of water, at least affordable ones that is.

    Plus there more versatile than canister systems. Have you seen a canister filled with live plants.

    I have no beef with canister systems, they're the easy route and preferred for those who can't complete DIY projects. For many they don't have the time or patience to create their own sump filtration system. If you do some research, plan, look for deals on equipment, etc you can build your own filtration system for a fraction of the cost of equivalent canister system.

    Quote Originally Posted by Fishguy2727
    2-Don't use bioballs. Just leave the space under the filter socks empty. Bioballs just create extra work for you and/or become a nitrate factory.
    Nitrate factory = your filtration system is performing as it should, not a bad thing.
    According to Wikipedia:
    "A factory... is an industrial site, ...where workers manufacture goods or operate machines processing one product into another." there was more irrelevant text in original, but you can look for yourself.

    "where workers manufacture goods" that would be your beneficial bacteria
    "processing one product into another" this is known as the nitrogen cycle

    Levels of Nitrate coincide with the necessary materials (Ammo to Nitrite) to produce it. You can't make 30 dozen cupcakes with only enough ingredients to make 1 dozen. Well actually you probably could, they would just be extremely small cupcakes. I think you get the point.
    Last edited by ijankrom; 11-08-2012 at 09:12 PM.
    25 Gal - Tropical
    Custom made Wet/Dry/Sump Filter System, AquaClear 20 Powerhead, RenaCal Excel 300 Heater, artificial plants
    Fish - 7 Blackskirt Tetras, German Blue Ram, Bulldog Pleco, Assassin snail.
    "Plans go wrong for lack of advice; many advisers bring success." King Solomon.
    Pictures of my 10 Gal Sump Filtration project

  6. #6

    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Whidbey Island Washington State
    ٩(̾●̮̮̃̾•̃̾)۶ - korith 


    0 Not allowed!
    Just a added hint, I always install sensors top and bottom and wire them so they will shut everything down in an emergency

  7. #7

    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    Whidbey Island Washington State
    ٩(̾●̮̮̃̾•̃̾)۶ - korith 


    0 Not allowed!
    You turn the sensors upside down to measure bottom water and right side up to measure top water. Wouldn't have a sump without them. They have saved me many times.

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