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hang on back sump


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The inspiration for this is im really liking my AIO with intank media baskets.  It way easier to maintain then my canister filter 

So started with an open box deal cpr refugium.  

Medium AquaFuge2 Hang on Back Refugium with LED Lighting System - CPR Aquatics

and then 3d printed media baskets like a weir in a sump




The idea is, water is pumped in chamber 1 with the heater spills over on to filter floss thru sponges, then to purigen packet (not shown), then through media and back to tank.  I have that area under the over flow not sure what to use it for yet maybe just java moss and try and grow some freshwater amphipodsimage.png.61bdeef230eb68301c6207528755a0c9.pngimage.thumb.png.bb4dd58f865c8a169ba6055a0afe0d96.png

Its all powered by a tiny 4.5w tunze but still has a decent flow rate 225gal per hr


After testing with some fish food to visualize the flow I've run into issues

1) media baskets need a gasket or some way to prevent water bypassing the filter floss/ foam

2) The intake pipe directs water straight down.  This is great for a refugium where your trying to slow the flow down but not for this application where im trying to get the majority of the waste into filter flow. So i need to add a 180 to the pipe or maybe just an airstone to keep waste from settling there


Anyway fun project so far

Will post updates as i work out the kinks

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Nice design work. That said, this looks a ton more complicated than maintaining a canister filter. IME canisters are the most ideal powered filter to keep up with leaving the ever so trusty sponge filter being the king of all easy to clean filters.

The thing about a 'refugium' in fresh water is that you need to make sure that it contains the space to be functional to get the benefits. Depending on the size tank this is going on, you might find that your design might not be able to keep up with the organic supply being provided by the main tank. In terms of wanting a nutrient sponge effect from plants that will eat up as much nutrients as possible, take a look at a Cheato reactor and imagine a setup with that with moss instead of sw algae. My main concern with moss in a HOB like this would be the invasiveness of the flora as once it grows it's going to stick to everything and migrate to other media in the tank. If you set and forget this setup you might find a majority of your media being held together by the moss. You'll also need to find a way to provide light to the moss, being it's in the first stage it's going to be the area where sediment will build up. This can actually cause moss to dye back as the sediment covering it will reduce the surface area of where light is going to hit it. The first stage with a filter sock would make this a dream to keep clean as you can pull the sock and either rinse/replace it as necessary. In terms of a sock, you can design and print a retainer for the first stage and use the bulk Tetra filter bags as the sock media and even line it with polyfill to add for collection and polishing. 

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Hi Tihssho 

Thanks for replying 

I’m not trying to do a freshwater refugium. I’m trying to make a hang on back sump. 
the filter floss is alternative to a filter sock. 
I replaced the filter sock that came with my aio on my other tank with this https://intankaquatics.com/intank-chamber-one-media-basket-for-waterbox-cube-waterbox-marine-waterbox-marine-x-waterbox-peninsula-mini/#description


it’s worked out great. All I do is change out  square of filter floss once a week and that’s my maintenance. My sponges and media never really get dirty.  It’s easier and cheaper than filter socks and shrimp safe. They walk right in eat what they like and then leave. I imagine it would be tough getting shrimp out of a sock but maybe it’s ok.

that said for the hang on back sump the sock might be better if I can’t get the flow going in the right direction.  A 2” filter sock looks like it would fit perfect. But would rather keep the filter floss solution if I can get it to work in the long runimage.jpg.a5c8b2b5a97eb611c231495076a10e7c.jpg

if I do end up putting Java moss it would be at the other end in the chamber below the overflow. It shouldn’t see too much flow and would face the window. So probably enough light for moss



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In terms of replicating a sump, that's a logic of solution by dilution. A sump, in actuality, should be able to hold a decent amount of water to help offset the volume that is within a display. Sumps have migrated over the years to 'just a place to hide hardware' and albeit it works, it's taking away from what a sump truely is. The AIO tanks don't truely have sumps, more so an area to hide hardware. I'm just nit picking at this point the usage of the word, but regardless this is an interesting project for sure! I ran a handful of various InTankAquatics baskets. I went to print my own initially, but the ease of acrylic surface texture to clean (because it's smooth with no layerlines being able to allow algae or whatever else growth) it was just ideal. 

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Todays update image.jpg.70b06c63f3e6924b766245b78cb886c3.jpg

Cut one of the media baskets and slid it over into the intake chamber. image.jpg.1a39beda36b9ae67417b5bcf0a7605c8.jpg

had to point the intake up to have enough room. It’s a little noisy and splashy at max pump speed to to make a small spray bar. The flow is now moving in the right direction.  With a spray bar should be good to go.



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I don't know what your options are but this might help make it a LOT easier to maintain and give you the advantage of forcing the water through the sponge without using seals.  You can also use the sliders you have, cut out the shelves excluding the bottom one and then use the shelves to pull things in and out of the sump. Especially if you're finding full thickness foam pieces like what they have in the aquaclear 110 or something like this...


Yellow = Coarse PPI foam
red = Medium/fine PPI foam
Green = Filter Floss.
This would let you swap out filter floss a lot easier to keep the media chamber clean as well as remove/maintain the sponge without too much hassle and removing so many pieces.  This is similar in design/function to the Fluval 407 canisters as well as a few other sumps I've seen.


This video is a pretty good setup too.  I like both designs.  I would definitely be down to have one of these in place of a HoB any day of the week.



Edited by nabokovfan87
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Hi nabokovfan87

All the foam is 2” aquaneat Amazon foam that I cut to fill .  The blue is coarse foam. I think I have some fine foam in the garage. So I could take out the second media basket and put in a strip of fine foam. I probably would put a block of coarse in the bottom to kind of direct the flow (least resistance).  The flow pattern will probably get better as the fine foam gets clogged up. 
thanks for the suggestion


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