Posted: Wed Dec 22, 2010 12:12 pm Post subject: Re: Glass driling & bulk head fixing
@Madan: thanks again. when you say reverse so you mean send the return through the gravel and then up into the tank? i guess this would dislodge the detritus on the surface and propel it towards the outflow by the vacuum created by the outflow? wouldn't it murky the tank up with all this disruption?
Posted: Wed Dec 22, 2010 3:36 pm Post subject: Re: Glass driling & bulk head fixing
Your 2 Eheims 2217 have a filter volume of only 1.5 gallons each. In total 3 gallons of filter volume. Your sump with a 36 by 15 footprint and even assuming water levels of around 15 inches will have a huge capacity for around 35 gallons. If your intend to use the same for a marine/reef tank later on, you will definetely have atleast 3 compartments planned there. A skimmer compartment, a refugium and a return pump compartment with separating baffles. What will you put in those compartments now? You have all the space in the world for all your biological, mechanical and chemical filteration media. And huge quantities of that too to take care of all the waste that your chiclids can generate. I am talking about filter media volume of not less than 10-15 gallons compared to the 3 gallons of the Eheims.
Secondly once you have drilled the holes on the bottom glass for the Eheim outlets and the back glass for the Eheim inlets, you are stuck with the holes for life. You cannot plug a hole back, non return valves fail and these very holes will be a big headache. They will be a major concern for accidental drainage once you remove the Eheims- either for equipment malfunction, or for graduation to a marine/reef setup when u will have to dispose off the Eheims (since they become nitrate factories) or for use of the Eheims in another setup. If at all you have to use the Eheims in this setup, dont use them by drilling holes for inlet and outlet. Simply use them over the top method for both inlets and spraybar. Eheims come with all the curved pipes and all. That way at least you end up with only the necessary holes and the Eheims are there for any other purpose - if it may so arise in the future.
Posted: Sat Dec 25, 2010 5:31 am Post subject: Re: Glass driling & bulk head fixing
Hello Dinesh, I hadnt seen this post as I dont usually browse all sections :)
here is my take on all this:
1. how safe are the drilled set up in terms of longevity and weakening the glass? -- perfect no issues, if done right, without these reef tanks wont be existing.. its used worldwide..
2. how precise is the drilling in india compared to standardisation of the bulk head fittings or even a threaded pipe? ... drilling is precise, availability of right size drill holes isnt always... for e.g. you get 1/2" drill bit and a 1/2" bulkhead fitting.. it will never go in it... you will have to choose a smaller bulk head, but then it could be so small that there would be a lot to fill up
3. what are the best types of washers that can be used - silicone, tephlon, rubber, etc? -- for all purpose use silicone, for fresh water mostly use rubber.. for reef silicone... you can use white cement with epoxy waterproofing as well and once dried cover with silicone..
4. how are the gaps between the glass bordering the drilled hole and the plumbing filled or sealed? --- with #3 above
5. which material is better for the bulkhead - PVC, lead, steel plated brass, galvanised iron, etc? ---- PVC
6. is it better to drill the bottom glass or the back panel? --- depends,, some times you may need a combination like I have done in the tank you saw
7. i have been given the impression, that toughened glass though, 5-6 times stronger than regular glass, is very brittle and if it breaks it will shatter. on the other hand regular glass will not crack up as much. in view of this would it make sense to laminate a toughened glass with a regular glass sheet for extra compressive strength and its ability to stay together longer (like a car windshield)? ---- -this idea of sandwiching 2 glasses is absolutely a dangerous idea... just drill 1 15mm glass and then get it toughened, peace of mind.. dont worry for later..
Use finolex brand bulkheads,, in bombay they are known as tank nipples...
use finolex schedule 40 Cpvc pipes or upvc pipes
Also what Madan said is right regarding using reverse eheim flow, it works like a charm... its synonymous with under gravel jets...
Posted: Sat Dec 25, 2010 1:56 pm Post subject: Re: Glass driling & bulk head fixing
Personally of the many tanks that i have drilled not a single one has ever leaked or cracked at all. All of these are largely marine or cichlid setups and most of them are 4 feet and above made of 12mm glass. Infact 60% of them were drilled with the tanks actually being filled. The Key is not to use pressure on the drill, do not use knocking mode, do it in small portions, I usually do about 45 - 60 secods, patience is the key. It took me a good 45mins to an hour to drill one hole in a 12mm glass. So you can see how slow i was. All of these tanks have simple bulkheads with rubber washers on them. All i have done is use Silicone White, the ones that usually plumbers would use to fill gaps in tubs or tiles. I have a layer of these on all my rubber washers, not one has given away in the last 1 year since i started drilling. The oldest drill that i have functioning at my home is 1 1/2yrs.
if that does not happen i go ahead with plan A:
1 hole of 1.5 inches in the bottom glass for the sump outflow system.
1 hole of 0.5 to 0.75 inches in the bottom glass for the under-gravel reverse jets. this will be a divided system of pipes to jet out water with some pressure to dislodge the surface detritus. (just hope my cichlids dont expose it by digging up the gravel to the bare bottom)
2 holes of 1 inch each for the outflow into my Eheim filters
1 hole of about 0.75 inches into the back glass for the return from the sump
1 hole of 0.5 to 0.75 inches for the return from the other eheim filter.
all the glass will be 12 mm and the viewable sides will be of crystal clear white glass. im just deciding on the pump i'll use for the sump return to finalise the return pipe diameter. dont want to do any guess work so i'll be getting the fittings and pump before i get the glass and drill it up.
my old tank will be cut up and remodeled into the sump with baffles of new 4mm glass. the extra glass from the old tank will serve to provide support to the pipes in the cabinet below the main tank.
i have access to PVC fittings from "ashirvad", "prince", "finolex" in mumbai and will get items form these brands.
silicone sealant will be used around the neoprene washers for a better seal around the bulk heads.
just trying to coordinate (stretch) my wallet to my desires.
Posted: Wed Dec 29, 2010 10:10 pm Post subject: Re: Glass driling & bulk head fixing
have been shopping around in Nagdevi street the "hub of plumbing" in mumbai. after 3 full days i could not find any thing that fits the bill. if company A has one component they dont another and so it goes on...
another thing that hit me in the face again is the pathetic standardisation levels in this country. dimensions vary between companies by a good mm or more at times!!!!!
finally i have got the bulkhead (tank nipples) made to order from polypropylene and they should be ready in a days time. all other parts of the plumbing are Astral CPVC "equivalent to" CPVC grade 40 of finolex. i'll have to try my luck.
funny thing is that the main finolex dealer in the area "Vasi Shums" does not even have a catalog to show his customers and anything ordered he claims will take over a month!!!! guess finolex is playing hard to get.
well... i really dont have time for all this dilly dally. i get the parts tomorrow after the bulkheads are ready and move on to get the glass drilled.
have also changed my plans a bit in view of the confidence level that has sunk by all this sub-standard goods available:
1) the outflow to the sump will be drilled from the rear glass about 5 inches from the top edge
2) the outlet to the sump will be enclosed in an overflow box
3) an external durso type stand tube will be designed to carry the outflow to the sump
4) the sump return will be drilled from the rear glass about 1.5 inches from the top edge
5) the return will be channeled through a 4-way to 2 jet-like outlets on both rear corners of the tank directed toward the front center of the tank & 2 spray bars about 1 inch above the water level so we can "hear" the water when we want to. all these 3 channels will have ballheads to allow or stop the flow
6) im painting the rear glass a dark blue or black so the pipes can be hidden
7) my eheims will be connected as they have been intended by the company over the top edge without any drilling
an under-gravel jets system will be installed with either the eheim returns or a separate low pressure powerhead that i already have with me. yet to decide the nitty gritties of that...
Posted: Thu Dec 30, 2010 8:00 am Post subject: Re: Glass driling & bulk head fixing
I agree... our standardization sucks in almost everything... but you should have been able to get all parts rather than getting fabricated.. but nevertheless..
by the way I cant figure out which way you are going with your plans... if the idea is letting eheim pipes visible and not planning for future there is no advantage of doing the drills any way.. you may just want to do one drill on back or side glass for the sump...
just put one eheim in reverse flow... the other will manage to suck it and the sump will help it .. then make a DIY background and hide the pipes...
Posted: Tue Jan 04, 2011 7:10 pm Post subject: Re: Glass driling & bulk head fixing
sorry did not see this set of replies; was too busy with the tank and getting all the things i need.
after all the multiple hassles:
1) finolex main agent in nagdevi street (vasi shums) did not have many parts i needed and did not have a catalog either!!!!
2) finolex parts when ordered were reported to take about 3-6 weeks to arrive and full advance had to be made
3) cross company fit was not really good or tight - poor specification standardisation in india
4) bulkhead with long threaded portion was not available from any company
5) neoprene washers would take 4-6 days to deliver - 1st 3 guys i met and asked from
6) and the list goes on to lesser issues
finally i boiled it down to:
1) i found a dealer for "Astral Flowguard" who had all the parts and also would arrange the other parts within a days time
2) drill only for the sump - since the eheim holes would go waste in future if i went marine
3) i had to get the tank nipples (bulkheads) made to order from schedule 80 pipes
4) drill the back pane - due to poor standardisation
5) washers arrived earlier than expected within 2 days and also cheaper than the initial quote. the original guy was not at the shop; another guy delivered and gave the lower price even after i gave him the cash for the initial quote
6) glass is expected today any minute now with extra clear viewable sides and front and drilled back all in 12 mm.
A) old tank became the sump - got it cut and sized and polished with the baffles at no extra charge from the 2nd hand glass dealers near JJ hospital. he kept the extra glass which was fine with me
B) sump return will be chanelised into 2 jets on the rear corners and a spray bar as well at the front of the tank. each will have a ball-valve to vary the flow.
C) eheim returns will flow into an under-gravel jet system to dislodge the detritus towards the eheims
D) planning to surround the UGJ system with stones and cover this all with sand
E) sump will contain coral gravel to buffer pH to alkaline levels and bioballs or ceramic rings for added filtration
F) have got myself an "Aquanic" pump rated at 2500 LPH with a head pressure of 15 feet for the sump return
G) all the plumbing has arrived and im just waiting for the main tank glass to begin the silicone process.
Posted: Tue Jan 04, 2011 11:38 pm Post subject: Re: Glass driling & bulk head fixing
sample holes either too big (by 1-2+ mm on one side) or too small (by 1-2+ mm on one side). what to do, now???
1) pack the gap with silicone?
2) siliconise the rim of the washers?
3) silicone bead around washers?
4) scrap the idea of sump with drilling?
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