PDA

View Full Version : Blacking our my refugium


Punchanello
09/07/2017, 11:19 PM
Hi All,

I have a glass sump in a racetrack configuration. I'd like to black out my refugium section to stop light spilling over in to the other sections. I'd like to avoid encouraging algae growth in the return or skimmer sections

Can this be done safely? Can I use something that won't leech out chemicals in to my tank or so something else disastrous? Is it even worth it?

Thanks in advance for your help :)

Fredfish
09/07/2017, 11:42 PM
Black starboard? I know some have used starboard for the bottom of their tank.

Punchanello
09/08/2017, 12:05 AM
Black starboard? I know some have used starboard for the bottom of their tank.

Is star board HDPE?

I was thinking that black glass might also be an option. I guess I want to avoid paints that can leech in to the system, flake or chip.

mcgyvr
09/08/2017, 05:01 AM
yes.. starboard = HDPE (with one side textured I believe)

der_wille_zur_macht
09/08/2017, 06:53 AM
How about just plain old black acrylic?

I often make baffles from black acrylic if I know there's going to be light in one section.

On the other hand, if you don't black it out and algae starts growing in the other sections, it's like a free algae scrubber. Scrape it out when you do water changes and you're exporting nutrients. Bonus!

slief
09/08/2017, 11:48 AM
As mentioned above, black acrylic or even black ABS which is even cheaper. You could heat the ABS and bend it to hang over the edge of your glass so it's held in place or drill it and add some suction cups to hold hold it to the glass.

Drblakjak55
09/08/2017, 08:23 PM
Ok, what's ABS?


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk

der_wille_zur_macht
09/11/2017, 06:22 AM
Acrylonitrile butadiene styrene

It's a kind of plastic that comes in sheets, like acrylic:

https://www.tapplastics.com/product/plastics/cut_to_size_plastic/abs_sheets/524

You can get it at plastics suppliers, eBay, even Amazon. Might be worth checking bug box hardware stores too.

der_wille_zur_macht
09/11/2017, 06:28 AM
One more thought. ABS sheet is probably cheaper than acrylic but will try to float which may be annoying in this application. PVC and acrylic sheet will try to sink which makes them easier to work with for things you want to stay underwater.

HDPE (starboard) was mentioned above. It floats too.

slief
09/12/2017, 09:54 AM
One more thought. ABS sheet is probably cheaper than acrylic but will try to float which may be annoying in this application.

That is true. Thus my suggestion of bending an end to hang it over the edge of a divider or the use of the suction cups. Either of which would prevent it from floating.

The suction cups have a button head of sorts on them. You can drill a hole though the ABS that is a tad smaller than the button head and push the head through the hole to hold the suction cup in place.
https://www.amazon.com/Pack-Darice-Suction-without-Hooks/dp/B00M8C3Q04/

MrsReefK
09/12/2017, 10:01 AM
We have a cryptic fuge and used black plastic to keep the light out from our macro fuge. Will grab pics this evening to show you. We had to use PVC pipes horizontally across the macro fuge at the water surface to hold it up, worked out well.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

MrsReefK
09/12/2017, 01:35 PM
We have a cryptic fuge and used black acyrlic to keep the light out from our macro fuge. Will grab pics this evening to show you. We had to use PVC pipes horizontally across the macro fuge at the water surface to hold it up, worked out well.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk


Here are the visuals for you. We bought the black sheet at menards, 4'x8' and cut it down to our needs. It's the same plastic that lifereef has on their sump, see photos of sumo for example.

You'll see the PVC pipe at the top of the macro fuge, there's one at the front, middle and center at the top to hold it in place. It didn't float, the cryptic waterfalls into the macro, the water was going behind the plastic, pushing it outwards, PVC worked amazingly. Also have a sheet on the back outside of the cryptic to keep the fuge light out.

Sorry for the blue hue, frag tank was just waking up. Also showed our SW mixing tank where we made another kid out of the same sheet of plastic. https://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20170912/cbe767c76580f40ab1c45187d88413ca.jpghttps://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20170912/81ad6ac12cc0e8286306120985ea73c8.jpghttps://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20170912/576a951ef13515a31115647ba436e4f5.jpghttps://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20170912/7d20b2bf33964bff58412dcd09e0ab9e.jpg


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

luu78
09/12/2017, 04:22 PM
Hi, soon enough both dividers on your fuge chamber will be covered with coralline algae which effectively block light from entering your return chamber provided the light is parallel with the top of the fuge, thus preventing algae growth in there. I leave my coralline algae on the dividers for this purpose. This way, I can leave the fuge open for better gas exchange. This is more critical for my acrylic DT since theres less opening on top due to top bracings. Nicely made lids! Where's Menards? I like to purchase these for future tank mods as well. And how much was it for a 4'x8' sheet? How this is the material?


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

MrsReefK
09/12/2017, 04:32 PM
Hi, soon enough both dividers on your fuge chamber will be covered with coralline algae which effectively block light from entering your return chamber provided the light is parallel with the top of the fuge, thus preventing algae growth in there. I leave my coralline algae on the dividers for this purpose. This way, I can leave the fuge open for better gas exchange. This is more critical for my acrylic DT since theres less opening on top due to top bracings. Nicely made lids! Where's Menards? I like to purchase these for future tank mods as well. And how much was it for a 4'x8' sheet? How this is the material?


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk



Menards is a chain hardware store in the US. If you have heard of Lowe's, Home Depot, stores like that.

It's great because it's smooth on one side (underside) and a bit rougher on the top.

A sheet of it was $50.

My fuge and sump hasn't grown any coralline on any of the dividers, but my DT is covered along with the frag tank. Maybe someday!


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

luu78
09/12/2017, 04:33 PM
Thanks for the info!


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Punchanello
09/13/2017, 10:18 PM
Wow, this thread has much more good stuff than I had anticipated. Thanks for all the help. I'll post the results here and in my tank journal (see my sig).