MMcDonald 285 gallon Plywood Build Thread

Discussion in 'I made this!' started by NASAGeek, Feb 16, 2010.

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Maximum Water Depth (Surface to Sand)

  1. 15-17"

    1.8%
  2. 18-20"

    5.5%
  3. 21-23"

    7.3%
  4. 24-26"

    32.7%
  5. 27-29"

    25.5%
  6. 30-32"

    18.2%
  7. 33-35"

    9.1%
  1. 2in10

    2in10 Super Moderator Staff Member

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    Looks good on Q1, 2 and 4, I would buy a skimmer that is rated for 33 to 50% more than your water volume for safety and overstocking coverage.
     
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  3. reefmonkey

    reefmonkey Giant Squid

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    This is off but what type of epoxy do you plan to paint? I've been planning a 480 for quite awhile but am having difficulty finding a reliable 2 part epoxy. West systems is my current choice.
     
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  4. Telgar

    Telgar Snowflake Eel

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    very nice design, and I thought I over engineered mine :p
    You could probably open up the middle under the stand using the supports the way I did in my stand build.
     
  5. NASAGeek

    NASAGeek Eyelash Blennie

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    I was going to follow horkn's advice.... I haven't selected one yet. Just starting the design process.

    M
     
  6. reefmonkey

    reefmonkey Giant Squid

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    I hope you document it all. It will be a very interesting read and one I'm looking forward too.
     
  7. NASAGeek

    NASAGeek Eyelash Blennie

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    I am planning on documenting everything.

    Another question. I was researching and on another site I saw a guy that pre-integrated his plumbing into the plywood build such that he had no Koralia's or anything visible in the final product. All the plumbing for flow and everything was built in.

    I am planning the same. So here is the question...

    All overflows are always in the back. In my design I could have overflows all around the top of the tank or easily 3 sides. I can also get flow coming at any direction.

    So, if you weren't constrained... if you could do anything... what is the optimal overflow?? just backwall.... back and two sides....all the way around???

    If you weren't constrained, what is the optimal flow design?? Stealing ideas from what I saw on the other site, he had flow outputs into his tank all over the floor of his tank and walls... all hidden. The sand hides the plumbing. Then he built sand and rock covered out crops to hide the outlets.

    Thoughts???

    M
     
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  9. Powerman

    Powerman Giant Squid

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    Yes you need a new skimmer. My first recommendation is anything powered by a Laguna 1500 based pump. ATB 10.5, SWC 250/300A. If you are stuck on Octopus, then move up to a BB 5000 based skimmer.

    So far your setup looks good. Sand caluculations are pretty straight forward.I know originally the PO bought 150 lbs of LR in my 90g. Well honestly.... it was too much. I mean the tank was just "full". So the thinking is 1-2 pounds per gallon, but personally I'm more on the 1 side. Just a bit more open and more room for fish and coral. But that is really a personal preference thing.
     
  10. Powerman

    Powerman Giant Squid

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    What you are talking about is "closed loop". Many do closed loop. Some don't like it. But here is a thought.... there are some that believe flow is much more important that lighting. That it is the most underestimated aspect of this hobby. There is a lot of discussion on flow..random, chaotic, and the new one Gyre flow. I have thought a little about it but have not got to the point of designing my next tank, so I have not made up my mind. Doing a Gyre tank interested me.....My only advice is that flow in your tank is very very important, and you being the type you are, you really need to spend some time on the subject and figure out what you want to do about it. Don't treat it as an after thought.

    I will try to find a couple of links to flow aticles on Advanced Aquarist. Try googling gyre or gyro flow tanks. Very interesting. I did not want to do a top to bottom type, but a clockwise type. That ofcourse would require an island of rock which is what I want, but you may not so that would not work.

    To me, the best overflow is a Calfo coast to coast with a Bean animal overflow. There are ways to vary a Bean Animal, Herbies are good, but going custom as you are leaves you the ability to do what you want. Google Bean Animal overflow and you will get his web site. He links the coast to coast. Probably done by plenty before....but somehow Anthony Calfo seems to get the claim to doing coast to coast overfolws.... Hence the Calfo overflow.
     
  11. Telgar

    Telgar Snowflake Eel

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    Last edited: Mar 6, 2010
  12. NASAGeek

    NASAGeek Eyelash Blennie

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    I don't think I communicated my question on overflows... but I got some interesting reading from it regardless. I plan to totally design the system: tank, stand, filtration, flow, lighting, .... everything... before starting.

    With respect to flow... look at this Candidate Overflow Design

    The tubes along the top perimeter are cut to allow the water in. The water then gravity drains down the six tubes into the sump. The ten red tubes will be individually valved return lines providing flow in the tank. I plan on all the return valves to be solenoid driven and computer controlled.

    You won't be able to able any of the tubes. They will all be behind rock walls or under the sand.

    Thoughts??

    Mark

    PS -- Yes, I thought about leaks from the holes. With the bulkheads glued in place and then epoxy'ed with the wood....I don't think they'll be going anywhere.