View Full Version : Sump for limited cabinet space

03/31/2009, 11:25 AM
I've spent a good amount of time looking through this forum, but haven't been able to find anything directly related to this...

I have an AGA 55 gallon with their standard pine stand. I'd like to use a sump, but the dimensions within the stand really constrict my options (if I remember correctly, I have about 10 1/8" depth to play around with).

I bought a standard 10 gallon tank and partitioned off based on some of the best practices from this site and Melevsreef.com. However, went to put the sump into the tank, and it is 1/8" too deep (because of the plastic trim along the top and bottom of the tank) to fit between the all the framework!

Has anyone else had this challenge and what have you done to overcome? I considered removing the plastic trim from the 10 gallon, but got nervous about losing some of the structural soundness of the tank.

Anyone have pictures of what they've done? Any suggestions for alternatives to glass tanks? Space is limited, so only place for the sump in my current home is in the stand.


03/31/2009, 11:51 AM
You could always make a sump with custom dimensions to fit perfect using acrylic.

03/31/2009, 11:52 AM
You can always daisy-chain a couple smaller tanks (5 gallon) together with bulkheads and PVC; first tank is the skimmer chamber, second is a fuge, third is the return section. I've seen this done on here with good results. If you ever need to take it apart, just drain, unhook the PVC (Unions between tanks is helpful) and remove in sections.

03/31/2009, 11:52 AM
Build or have a custom sump built for you using acrylic. You mentioned limited space, otherwise I'd suggest building a second cabinet next to your display to house your sump and equipment. You could always build a new stand using the DIY forum for reference. I was in the same predicament as you, but was lucky enough to just barely manage a 10g AGA tank for a sump. Not my most preferred sump size...

03/31/2009, 12:15 PM
I had the same problem. I believe I had 10 1-4" clearance front to back. A 10 gal tank with some ingenuity worked out well.

I used an old water bottle as the fuge with the skimmer and return areas in the 10 gal.




Hope that helps

03/31/2009, 01:33 PM
Same problem in my stand. I just built my own out of glass. Check Garf.org.

03/31/2009, 04:23 PM
I say go with acrylic. It can easily be made to fit those dimensions, but make sure you make it extra high to accomodate the backflow of water when the power goes off.

03/31/2009, 08:39 PM
If its only an 1/8, maybe you can take a wood chisel and shave out the area where the plastic hits, or a router if you have one.

03/31/2009, 10:07 PM
Wow! Thanks for all the quick replies!

Not sure about acrylic...like everyone else, I'm a little tight these days! ...hard to beat a $10 10 gallon glass.

@Mille239: that might be an interesting approach...I'll have to search RC for some examples.

@Cbravo212: thanks for the pictures! It's great to see an example of how someone else was able to work around the space constraints. I have a middle brace on both the front and back of my stand. It looks like you only have a front brace on yours. However, looking closely at the back, it looks as if there may have been a back brace at one point...did you remove? I tried to work the 10g every which way and ended up cracking the glass against the door hinge!

@bradbmbj: really considered that! ...my mistake was that I assume the tank would fit without taking the thickness of the plastic trim into account. I siliconed all the baffles in place only to find out it wouldn't fit! Almost broke out the chisel and power sander! :)

04/01/2009, 07:33 AM
I'd say remove the black trim. If the tank is snug against the stand brace, that will be plenty of support for the 10g. If there is a little wiggle room after removing the plastic, use a shim to make it snug. It's not like a 10g needs a center brace or anything, you should be fine!