Proofing a weir

ekocak

Vampyroteuthis
Registered
#1
Hi everyone. I've slowly but surely been working at building my tank. At this point I'm still undecided as to what type of ceph specifically is going in there (and it may come down to availability anyways.) To that end, I want to make sure it's as escape proof as possible and I'm really wondering how to tackle the weir before the intake. A screw on grate is out, as the weir is way too small. I was thinking maybe filter sock or pantyhose over the weir? Thoughts?
 

DWhatley

Cthulhu
Staff member
Moderator
#2
The biggest problem with any kind of filter block is slowing the return (and risking overflowing the tank). A filter sock or panty hose will be way to fine and slow the exiting water. Out of curiosity, how wide is the weir? Mine are not exceptionally wide but fit the, now standard, bulkhead filters (they come with slip fittings as well as screw fittings. Before I found the commercially, I used a power head filter). The slotted filters are still too open for very small animals though and I have experimented with a couple of options. The one I like best but may not work for most tanks, is lighting the weir area without lighting the tank. The second best option I have used is VERY course sponge (I think what I have may have originated as an air filt rather than for an aquarium - not sure where it came from). The courser the better so that you allow maximum flow.
 

ekocak

Vampyroteuthis
Registered
#3
For reference, this is the kit I used: http://www.glass-holes.com/700-gph-Overflow-Box-Complete-Kit-gh700kit.htm

Note the "bulkhead strainers don't work" bit there. Since this is the first system I've built myself I am SUPER worried about overflowing. I actually went to buy a bigger sump tank than the 20 I have lying around but was persuaded not to by my LFS. (might be the first time an LFS has ever talked me out of giving them money, so that's cool).
 

DWhatley

Cthulhu
Staff member
Moderator
#4
Overflowing the sump should not be a worry as long as you measure the power off backflow and mark a high water height (I just use stickers) but overflowing the display tank might be a concern. The tubing looks small but reading the description, it has a normal diameter bulkhead. The problem with a single overflow (the tank I have issues with only has one, every tank since I demand 2 - demand as in making Neal drill two holes :sagrin:) are apparent when something blocks the flow (I had a snail cause issues in one tank but air is the problem in the aforementioned finicky tank) . This bulkhead should be rated at about 600 gph but will likely best be suited for about half that (calculating your pump size needs a bit of measurement but here is a decent discussion). Their suggestion of having an adjustable pump (if it is affordable) is not a bad idea. Do keep in mind that anything you put in front will decrease the flow and needs to be inspected regularly.
 

DWhatley

Cthulhu
Staff member
Moderator
#6
As I understand it, you can put a valve on most any pump on the side that sends the water to the main tank but not on the intake but I am pretty lame when it comes to hardware so double check that. Several of my skimmer pumps have a simple ball valve there but pressure vs restriction is not one of those things I ever learned to calculate. The internet is a wondrous thing :grin:
 

ekocak

Vampyroteuthis
Registered
#7
Getting ahead of myself. The 20 gal I had planned on as my sump is a PAIN to get in and out of. It's way too high. I may need to snag somethin else before I do any testing.
 

DWhatley

Cthulhu
Staff member
Moderator
#8
It it is that high, your skimmer may not workout. Even if the skimmer fits, you may not be able to take off the waste cup. The minimized height needed to remove the Coralife skimmers is one of the features I really appreciate. If you have the width and depth, you might look for a breeder tank as they are lower than most displays. I found a used 15 gallon breeder to use as one of my sumps for just this reason.
 

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