View Full Version : 125 Gallon Above-Tank Design

05-20-2009, 01:44 PM
Hello Everyone.

I'm new to the forum and am really interested in this method. I've in the planning stages for setting a 125 Gallon Reef Tank and would like it to be almost entirely self-sufficient. Initially, I was planning on using a sump, but this seems like a better design, especially considering the amount of copepods that can grow.

As I said, my tank is a 125 Gallon acrylic tank, is 60"x18"x24" and does not have a stand or canapy. I am working on the plans to build my own stand and canapy, so this could fit in perfectly.

So my initial plan is to have a pump (800-1200gph) that removes water from the top 2" of water. Ideally, I want to have that force the water up to the top of the scrubber, which sits atop the tank. To minimize the height of the scrubber, it would be two separate sheets to simplify cleaning. Each sheet will be 18" wide and 8" tall. The sheets would flow into a large reserve area that would then flow through an under-over-under. From there, the water would drain down a declined surface just like a protein skimmer or AquaClear Filter does to minimize bubbles. I believe this method would allow the copepods to easily get into the tank without a special pump and keep it all well concealed. On each side of the screen, there would be a 36" light.

Any thoughts on this design?


05-21-2009, 12:12 AM
Should work great! Use 2700K bulbs

05-21-2009, 04:53 AM
For 36" of screen width in total you'll need 1260gph of actual water flow, not rating on the pump, so you'll need something bigger than that, maybe 1500 to 2000 gph.
That will be a LOT of flow into the tank, so maybe you want to decrease the width of the screens slightly and increase the height, then you could use a lower flow pump.
The total area is: 36*8 = 288 square inches, if lit from both sides that will be more than enough (general rule is one square inch lit on both sides per us gal).
Also, you'll need several bulbs on each side, e.g. 2x 36" tubes on either side, with reflectors, as SantaMonica says, make sure to get bog standard bulbs, 2700k (get them from lighting shops, DIY stores, electrical wholesalers etc.).

05-21-2009, 12:00 PM
Hey Wurley. Thanks for pointing that out about the double-sided. Somehow, I mis-read that when I was going through pages and pages of information. That'll bring it down to a 24"x6" screen. Much more managable and lower cost. which also puts me in the right flow range for the pump. Sounds like a plan. Now all I need to do is get a table saw so that I can build my aquarium stand, canapy, and scrubber.

Thanks guys.