Sump Baffles

Help Support Reef Frontiers:

Pip Tazo

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 9, 2013
Messages
223
Location
Bothell
Hi,

I am making a sump out of a 50 gallon breeder. I have never built a sump before. Are there any designs I should follow? tips? important things I should keep in mind?

All I am really doing is putting in baffles, so any suggestion would be helpful. (compartment size, height of baffles, etc.)

I do not plan to put a refugium in this sump.

thanks!
 

mfinn

Surgeonfish
Joined
May 31, 2004
Messages
6,900
Location
Olympia, WA
Hi,

I am making a sump out of a 50 gallon breeder. I have never built a sump before. Are there any designs I should follow? tips? important things I should keep in mind?

All I am really doing is putting in baffles, so any suggestion would be helpful. (compartment size, height of baffles, etc.)

I do not plan to put a refugium in this sump.

thanks!


When I plan out a sump, my thoughts are as follows. First chamber is incoming water/skimmerr, second is for a refugiums and third is the return area, also a good area for ATO floats, heaters, probes, etc.
My first chamber is where the water comes in at. This is where I put my skimmer. So I make that area big enough for a skimmer and also big enough for a upgraded skimmer down the line.
I also plan that first baffle as about the highest baffle. I figure I can always make a small stand to raise the skimmer to the correct height. Then down the line of a new skimmer needs more water, then the stand can be shorten or taken out.

Then I plan the return area. This area can be a little smaller than the skimmer area. I use like to use external pumps when I can, but I make this area big enough for a internal as well if needed.

What is left over in the middle I use for a refugiums. The bigger the better, IMO.

You also need to figure out a operating water level in a sump and plan the baffle height accordingly.
Then you also need to figure out how high your return nozzle in the tank is going to be.
When the power goes off, the return line is going to back syphon into the sump.
You need to make sure that with the operating water level in the sump, the back syphon from the tank won't overflow the sump.

There are a lot of different ways to do a sump and they probably all work. This is just the way I do mine.
 

Pip Tazo

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 9, 2013
Messages
223
Location
Bothell
that makes a lot of sense. I think I will approach it that way. I have seen some fancy ones with RO/DI reservoirs and refugiums far on one side with the return in the middle. it all got confusing.. haha

Thanks Marty.
 

mfinn

Surgeonfish
Joined
May 31, 2004
Messages
6,900
Location
Olympia, WA
You can make it terribly complicated, but I try and keep it simple.

Mock it up, maybe post up some pictures and maybe we can see any issues before the silicone goes on.


And speaking of silicone, what are you using?
 

Pip Tazo

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 9, 2013
Messages
223
Location
Bothell
do you think there is an advantage to a bubble tower for reducing bubbles if you will have a skimmer in the same compartment?

I like the idea of having live rock wherever possible. Always cool to see what grows from live rock.
 

Pip Tazo

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 9, 2013
Messages
223
Location
Bothell
I have the marineland silicone. A glass 50 gallon breeder and nothing for the baffles yet. I was thinking acrylic baffles.
 

spieszak

Administrator
Joined
Oct 8, 2012
Messages
1,809
Location
Seattle
Remember you can use a siphon break on your return too (dill a hole at or near the water line) so that you can have more volume in the sump.
Since I have the display fuge, and hope to eventually plumb in the nem tank, I have no baffles... way to complicated to figure it out.
Glass sump should usually have glass baffles, silicon doesn't adhere acrylic to glass well.
Also, skimmer stand as Marty mentioned. PVC, EggCrate and zip ties is about the easiest.. The more volume you can use, the better.. . You can see mine in this pic
 

mfinn

Surgeonfish
Joined
May 31, 2004
Messages
6,900
Location
Olympia, WA
I have the marineland silicone. A glass 50 gallon breeder and nothing for the baffles yet. I was thinking acrylic baffles.
As Stacey mention silicone doesn't adhere to acrylic as well.
It will stick for a while, but it's not as long lasting as it is on glass.

I'd go through the phone book and look for glass companies near you and ask for prices for cut pieces. I'd use 1/4" thick. Stay away from anything thinner. Much too easy to break.
Ask if they have salvage glass. Usually cheaper.
 

spieszak

Administrator
Joined
Oct 8, 2012
Messages
1,809
Location
Seattle
I like it. Nice big refugiums area.

fwiw, I like to only use macro in the refugiums and nothing else.
LR in a sump can definitely be a detritus trap, which is then a trate sink. But, like anything else, if you want it, do the work of cleaning it or at least run a sock most of the time, and you'll be fine. 1000 ways to do things, each correct in their own way...
 

Pip Tazo

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 9, 2013
Messages
223
Location
Bothell
Glass baffles it is!

I have another tank being used a refugium. 30 gallons dedicated to growing macro. So don't have a need for it in the sump at the moment. but perhaps I will build in a refugium compartment in case I change my mind in the future.

I noticed you submerge your media reactors. is there any advantage to that? as opposed to hanging them on the outside.

With the LV/detritus issue, I have seen some built in bubble towers where the incoming water hits live rock stacked inside of it. the water exits the bubble tower from the bottom. Maybe it wont cause as much detritus to be left behind if it is built in this way.

With the baffles, I have seen either 2 baffles or 3 baffles separating the compartment. any pros/cons to either approach?
 

BEAU_RN

Well-known member
Joined
Feb 25, 2013
Messages
180
Location
Kent, WA
When I plan out a sump, my thoughts are as follows. First chamber is incoming water/skimmerr, second is for a refugiums and third is the return area, also a good area for ATO floats, heaters, probes, etc.
My first chamber is where the water comes in at. This is where I put my skimmer. So I make that area big enough for a skimmer and also big enough for a upgraded skimmer down the line.
I also plan that first baffle as about the highest baffle. I figure I can always make a small stand to raise the skimmer to the correct height. Then down the line of a new skimmer needs more water, then the stand can be shorten or taken out.

Then I plan the return area. This area can be a little smaller than the skimmer area. I use like to use external pumps when I can, but I make this area big enough for a internal as well if needed.

What is left over in the middle I use for a refugiums. The bigger the better, IMO.

You also need to figure out a operating water level in a sump and plan the baffle height accordingly.
Then you also need to figure out how high your return nozzle in the tank is going to be.
When the power goes off, the return line is going to back syphon into the sump.
You need to make sure that with the operating water level in the sump, the back syphon from the tank won't overflow the sump.

There are a lot of different ways to do a sump and they probably all work. This is just the way I do mine.
Well said! I agree exactly...
 
Your email address will not be publicly visible. We will only use it to contact you to confirm your post.

Latest posts

Group builder
Top