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Best siphon to go from FT to sump: u-tube, overflow box, weir siphon, others?

I'm using a 55 gallon aquarium as my FT and a 29 gal aquarium as my sump tank for a CHIFT-PIST system.  I'd liek to use a solids lifting overflow setup, but I'm trying to decide which type of siphon is best going from one aquarium to another, since I have to go up and over the edge and not through the side wall.

Any input would be greatly appreciated!

Merry Christmas, everyone!

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Hello Bill

I've built a small indoor 55 gal setup with a U-siphon, it's been running well for 2 months so far. The U-siphon I've built is made of 3/4"PVC and handles a 600 gph pump well.

As for bringing up solids, I have two 12" air stones that help circulate the water up the tank in the back and near the ends on each side. I haven't noticed any accumulated solids on the bottom of the tank. I've also had a thought of extending the intake with a 90 for the U-siphon down to the lower mid of the fish tank if it is needed to help pull up some solids, but currently it hasn't been an issue with 7 small goldfish.

My tank drains from the U-siphon into 3 small grow beds that are a little lower than the FT, and the Grow beds drain to a sump underneath.

I followed a few posts from this thread to aid in the construction:

http://forums.saltwaterfish.com/t/297623/pics-diy-pvc-overflow

I'm still new to Aquaponics though, but hope this can help aid in your decision on what type of siphon you would like to use :)

Joe, my grow bed is up above, and my FT and sump are right next to each other underneath. The sump is a 29gal aquarium, which is a few inches shorter than the FT, which is a 55gal aquarium. Would the U-siphon work in this type of setup? I intend to have the water pump from the sump up to the growbed and then drain from the growbed into the fish tank and then the fish tank overflow back into the sump.
Have you had any issues with it losing prime and have something overflow in the system? That's my main worry-- the overflow stopping and having the tank flood my basement.

Hi Bill

I have not had any problems with an overflow, and the siphon picks back up no problem once it has been primed in the instance of a simulated power outage, or a pump off partial tank drain etc. One important aspect of the design is to add the one way air check valve into the top of the U going over the aquarium. This helps to bleed off excess air that would get trapped inside. In mine I just drilled a small hole that an air check valve fit snuggly into without any adhesives.

The air check valve used is from a pet store located near where they have the air pumps for aquariums.

Will this setup work with my ft and sump tank on the same level underneath the grow bed? Water pumps from sump to gb then siphons to sump.
The sump would need to be lower than the fish tank to allow the gravity of a siphon to work.

Joe-  While the bottom of the sump and the fish tank are on the same level, the sump tank is a few inches shorter-- the 55gal FT is 21" high and the 29gal sump tank is 18.75" high, will that work?  If it helps, the sump won't be completely full, only about 5/6 full, so the top water level in the sump will only be about 15.5" or so, while the FT water level will be around 20-20.5".

Joe Fisher said:

The sump would need to be lower than the fish tank to allow the gravity of a siphon to work.

It might work, but it would probably take a bit of tweaking and testing to make something like a shorter version of the  standard U-siphon that was linked above. Personally I wouldn't recommend it, might be to prone to problems.

Drilling the fish tank and making a bulkhead might be a better idea in your case, since you need to have them both tanks on the same level.

Ah Ha!  I know this discussion is a little dated...but

Bill Kellehar, I too have my GB above my FT and ST.  My FT and ST are next to each other on the ground and my ST is obviously shorter than my FT.  Pumping from the ST to the GB, then draining the GB into the FT.  Or at least that's the design I've come up with so far.

My main concern when incorporating a ST was to keep the water level in my FT more constant.  I considered a SLO to get the solids off the bottom of my FT and into my ST, as well as using it as an overflow if necessary.  But I haven't quiet wrapped my head around how to plumb the SLO.

I realize a simple horizontal PVC from the FT to the ST would allow water in the FT to flow to the ST, but it doesn't (obviously) take care of the solids.  Although if I HAD to pick one over the other my main concern is overflow.

So my question is, what did you come up with?

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