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Large Tank Owners and Reeflo Pumps FYI

Discussion in 'General Plant Topics' started by JDowns, Feb 23, 2009.

  1. JDowns

    JDowns Lifetime Charter Member
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    As an FYI Reeflo is introducing a new line of pumps and are offering them under a 2yr warranty for testers (requires a questionaire writeup) at a considerable price drop. I've ordered the 2500 to replace the pumps on my system. Follow this link to read on the BlackFin series pumps if you are interested.
     
  2. hani

    hani Lifetime Charter Member
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    The problem with them is they use too large plumbing like 1.5 to 2 in. thats too much for 120-180g tank, not easy to work with.
     
  3. JDowns

    JDowns Lifetime Charter Member
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    Got my pump today. Very quick ship time and great response time from the representitive at Reeflo. I won't have time to plumb it up until next week some time. Plus I really want to take my time laying out the new configuration. I will say the pump just by size is intimidating in comparision to the size of the Mag's I've been using. With 3200gph at 0 hd I definatly will be throttling this pump back. Which is a benefit with these pumps since they are more energy effecient throttled back on the outflow side. Be interesting to see the watt draw difference and if any heat transfer. Heat transfer should be significantly lower given these pumps run at 1725 rpms vs. the current 3200+ rpms on the mags. Basic math shows I should be saving about 25 - 30% on wattage, a watt meter will give me real world readings though.
     
  4. Gerryd

    Gerryd Plant Guru Team
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    Jdowns,

    Please keep us posted..........

    I saw an increase in heat transfer when I went to the panworld for mag drives...........wattage increase use was big as well.......

    I am thinking about testing these myself..........

    All I would need is adaptors for my current 1" unions to connect to the bigger inlet/outlets on the reeflo........throttle valves already are in place. Just swap the pumps and connectors......

    BTW you still owe us pics and a thread on your plumbing changes from the last time.........so don't forget some before pics prior to swapping again lol
     
  5. JDowns

    JDowns Lifetime Charter Member
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    Definatly will.

    For the price it is definatly worth the experiment. But I can't imagine it not working better then my current setup, which I currently like. I just want a more effecient pump setup with greater flexibility without jet type nozzles, to get a more even flow throughout the tank. They pretty much eat the shipping cost also. I'd have to check my receipt, but I believe S&H was $6.

    I'll be doing a full test before and after, as far as psi readings from the Nu-Clear's (533 & 547), watt draw comparision, and water temps.

    They also recommend getting a larger unit then you would need so you can throttle back the outlet. The pumps are just more effecient with some back pressure.

    I have a feeling I'll be spending some more time at Ryan Herco.

    Plus I decided to get rid of the canopy and design a simple billiard pendant to give me more flexibility on light. If I like the pendant type layout I'll end up putting together a more permanent fixture. I just don't want to spend alot of time and effort in the woodshop on something I end up not liking.
     
  6. Gerryd

    Gerryd Plant Guru Team
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    The NC 547 does not come with a guage unless you purchase it yourself and install. Did you do this?

    I ordered a bunch of spare parts for the NCs I have (533, 547 as well), o rings, drain plugs, vent plugs, guages, etc so I have a spare or two on hand..........

    Link:

    https://www.aquariumpart.com/login.asp?logout=yes

    I wrote to Inland Seas and they said that a guage on the 547 is superflous as it is a high flow filter, but one can be installed if desired....
     
  7. JDowns

    JDowns Lifetime Charter Member
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    Way to much in common here.

    I do have an extra gauge along with one I installed on the 547. I agree it is useless. But I wanted to test since I'm running the filter as a sand filter pretty much with Zeolite. Oddly the psi was the same as when the bio balls were installed.

    I have an extra band, (2) O-Rings, and vent plug O-Rings. I didn't want to get caught off guard with a broken little part. I did toss the handles that are used to tighten the band, not my favorite part of the design. I bought a 1/4" ratchet with a deep socket 1/2" instead that is dedicated for that purpose.

    Did your band nut squeak? Mine did when loosening and tightening on both units. It got so annoying I applied Silicone Gasket Grease to the threads (they should include this with the unit). Now its smooth as silk. Sounded like a cat was in a death thrawl when I did maintenance. :p
     
  8. Gerryd

    Gerryd Plant Guru Team
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    I like the dedicated ratchet idea...........

    I hope never to acutally hear such a sound, but yes mine sounded I guess just like that lol

    I also used a bit of grease on the threads and no issues after that....

    I got the spare drains as I broke the one on the 547 on the install.......

    So, I know that s**t happens :)

    BTW, I think the all NC config is really very sweet........they are great filters...........

    If you like the new pump, can you just keep it and leave it installed, or do you have to return it regardless?
     
  9. JDowns

    JDowns Lifetime Charter Member
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    The pump has virtually no conditions. The only thing they ask is that you fill out a questionaire after a few weeks of use. From what I've read about other Reeflo's there is about a week break in time for the windings. After that the noise level decreases. Most reviews say the initial decibal level is still quiter than Iwaki's. Once the pump breaks in they are very quite.

    I have a watt meter available to me, so I want to do as detailed an analysis as possible. I figure I owe it to them given the considerable discount. The pump still carries a 2 yr warranty. I believe all their other pumps carry a 5 yr. I do need to set this up so I can store the Mags for a quick swap if there are any problems.

    I'm considering a cone distributor for the main branches. I need to do a little more research on thier effeciency.
     
  10. Gerryd

    Gerryd Plant Guru Team
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    Jdowns,

    What about going parallel with the new more powerful pump? You could easily maximize the output and not have to throttle back at all......

    Just a thought :) I really like my parallel config..........

    What is a cone distributor? google shows waffle and ice cream come results lol
     
  11. JDowns

    JDowns Lifetime Charter Member
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    I'm looking at the 1.5" x (4) 1" distributor on this page.

    That would give me 4 seperate flow distribution points. All with ball valves nearest the outputs on the tank. That way I can optimize each individual output as the scape changes.

    I like the idea of the parallel also. But I want more polished water going through the 547. With 4 distribution points straight off the pump I should have a good safety bypass.

    My thoughts were to route as such:

    1 port to NC's (in series) out to port one on tank. Gate metering valve after NC's to set a starting PSI range. I'm thinking 7-8psi. Initial flow will dictate this. I change filters weekly so my flow should be consistant daily.

    1 port to mesh mod wye'd to port two and three on tank, opposite sides of tank. Ball valve here to set flow.

    1 port bypass straight to tank on port four. Ball valve here to set flow. This run most likely will be the run that is set to "throttle back" the pump.

    1 port capped for future use, or wyed with first outport to NC's to optimize resistance to the filters. (I'm leaning in this direction.) Then wye'd back together after filtration and out. This is how it is currently run but with two pumps. Then ball valve here to set flow.
     
  12. JDowns

    JDowns Lifetime Charter Member
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    Most the parts are coming in tomorrow. I settled on the 2" x (5) 1" ports. That will give me an extra port at the bottom of the distributor for maintenance drainage and really fast water removal for water changes. I'll plumb it with a male hose spigot end here.

    I'll also add a 1" bulkhead to the weir with a flush screen fitting. I'll mount this so its about 75% water change level. I currently use surface agitation more than the weir overflow, much more stable IMO for consistancy of O2 mixing and CO2 off gassing. This will more than likely be on the side not facing front viewing. I hope this also adds some water movement within the plant beds that are against this wall, since this is a prone spot for poor circulation.

    I hope to have time to tackle this on Sunday. Fortunatly business is swamped right now so I don't have time to rush into this, which will give me contemplation time. Plus its not like the system is in dire need of this anyways. Although the pump is staring at me menacingly. :D
     
  13. JDowns

    JDowns Lifetime Charter Member
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    This is pretty much the scheme I'm looking at as parts come together.

    1: 2" input. 2" true union ball valve inline for shuttoff. (2) 90's with max 18" pipe. The input comes with a true union slip style attachement.
    2: Reeflo Blackfin 2500.
    3: 2" output. The output also has a true union slip style attachement.
    4: 2" x (5) 1" cone distributor
    5: Bypass output to (A). 1" spa flex with 1" true union ball valve inline.
    6: Capped for future use if needed.
    7: Hose bib connection for drainage with 1/4 turn on/off. Much like the Nu-Clears have.
    8: Output to (D). 1" spa flex to 1" true union ball valve to NuClear 533 >> 547 to 1" true union ball valve to 1" spa flex out to output (D). Ball valve prior to Nu-Clears to regulate flow, ball valve after Nu-Clears for maintanance without draining tank.
    9: Output to (B&C) CO2 distribution. 1" spa flex to mesh mod pump (haven't decided if I'll stick with the Mag I have or use a different pump). 1" true union ball valve to 1" true wye, split outputs 1" spa flex to output (B & C). I'll use the loc-line ball valves here to regulate flow if needed.

    E: Dry port
    F: Weir Overflow

    Max run to any of the tank outputs shouldn't exceed 3' and a minimum of 2'. Each output will have a 90. I thought of a sweep or 45's but some head loss is welcome to take advantage of the wattage performance and I don't doubt I'll be throttling things back anyways.

    [​IMG]
     
  14. JDowns

    JDowns Lifetime Charter Member
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    An initial reading on watts with the old setup. New setup will be this weekend.

    The dual Mag 9.5's run in parrallel. Rated at 93 watts. Each pump is pullng 64 watts. These two pumps are gravity fed and working together. Only running one pump, each pump pulls 88 watts.

    The Mag 5. Rated at 45 watts. Pulling 38 watts. This pump is not gravity fed.

    The lights are an odd reading. This is a catalina fixture, 6 by 80w HOT5. 3 bulbs on a switch, total two switches. Running 3 bulbs - 298 watts, 2 bulbs any configuration - 228 watts, and 1 bulb - either 138 watts or 144 watts. ± 2 watts.
     
  15. JDowns

    JDowns Lifetime Charter Member
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    Oh my lord :p .

    Almost upooted my tank when I fired this pump up. I've had to dial back each valve to at least 50% output to make the flow managable. Even with adding the additional locline output.

    I experimented with some dwell time (thanks Tom for the hint) for the modified Mag drive and I thought my mist was good before. Standing back a few feet and mist isn't even noticable. Get up close and you can see the micro bubbles throughout the tank. I'm home this week so I'll have plenty of time to monitor and dial things in.

    I'll post some pics and a final schematic run through, later this week. I want to give the pump time to burn in before I make any assumptions on watts, noise, heat transfer, etc.
     
  16. Gerryd

    Gerryd Plant Guru Team
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    Hey,

    So, powerful pump I assume lol

    It's been over a month. How goes it?

    Updates please.
     
  17. JDowns

    JDowns Lifetime Charter Member
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    I like the pump enough that I ordered the next model down for a 135g.

    I'm interested to see their final flow curves though. The pump settled in at 210 -215w. Which is at 0 head according to thier prelim charts. I'm fairly certain I'm not running 0 head. :p TBH watt usage was not a factor in getting the pump. I pay the same each month whether I setup one pump or twenty more since I'm at the bottom curve already with my rate plan.

    I'm very happy with the versatility in the setup now. The distribution manifold is a godsend going from a 2" to five 1" outputs. Being able to dial in and throttle each specific output is very nice. With four loclines and one of them currently wye'd, get a specific flow pattern is fairly simple. Also as things grow in, or I change things redirecting flow is easy.

    Pump runs fairly quiet. This is hard to describe. I wish I had a decible meter. A computer fifteen feet away is louder then the pump when it spins up. Its quieter then what I expected. I went to the LFS and poked my head around other pumps to get a feel for a comparision. Its quiter then the Iwaki WMD40, and about the same if not slightly quieter than a Blueline 70. There was an initial fan shroud vibration. Removing the fan shroud and applying cork bark, so there is no metal to metal contact, and reinstalling with loctite corrected that situation.

    The pump does very well on heat transfer. The cooling fins are hot to the touch, you can't leave your hand there to long. But tranfer to the tank is minimal. I turned off my cooling fan ( I like my tank in the 74F range) and the tank settled in at a max temp of 80F. I do keep my house cool though, thermometer is set at 74F. Previous setup the tank would max out at 84F. So very happy on that end.

    All in all I'm more than pleased with the pump. I could have gotten the next model down though. But at the introductory prices not much of a loss there, and with these pumps having too much isn't a problem.
     
  18. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    The solution we used for this tank was quite different:

    [​IMG]

    The 6 Ehiems, 2 with heaters built in(these run to the 2 x 40W UV's) and the other 4 head to AM100 reactors.

    12 bulkheads for loc line drains(can more the drains anyway we want), and 6 returns with 1/2" loc line spray bars looks nice.

    This is what we might do on a reef tank, but is not that different here.
    The tank is 450 gal and you could easily get by with 4 filters.
    Each uses 30 W.

    What is the trade off here? Noise. There is none and the tank is 6 ft from the office desk where the client spends his 12 hour days working.

    He also knows how to service and deal with these filters, and it's less messy for him here.

    Even with 6 filters: 6x 30 = 180 watts, not much, 4x 30= 120 W and this tank is 2-3x larger than yours.

    Rather than the AM1000's, adding a needle wheel or mazzei loop with a mag drive/Lifeguard etc would be a good option for misting.

    The client does not like the mist much. I can sound proof a smaller pump like the above easily, but not a larger external type Iwaki or pool pump without spending a lot of $.

    If you had a central filtration system with a dozen tanks all over, how might you set this up?

    Thats' what I have to address later once I buy a home.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  19. JDowns

    JDowns Lifetime Charter Member
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    The largest factor for me was circulation and versitility in that aspect. With ball valves on four ouputs and two of the loclines (CO2 outputs) have additional ball valves, then splitting of loclines, flow distribution becomes very variable with nothing in the tank and only one pump is needed. That was the the trade off for me. I personally dislike canisters on large tanks, but that comes down to personal goals. I can't imagine setting up a large tank without them. Swapping cartridges is simple, and its zero bypass is hard to beat. But that comes down to individual taste rather than practicallity. From a cost standpoint, well lets be honest, on larger tanks such as that, cost takes a back seat in some regards to personal wishes.

    For central filtration thats interesting. I would imagine some type of overflow where max overflow from all the tanks would not exceed a sump type capacity. Then individual regulated outputs back to each tank. Also the output back to the tank couldn't exceed the input back to the sump. Sounds challenging :)
     
  20. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    The central filter idea is really useful.
    Angled grates to catch leaves etc and most of the larger crap is tough.
    Sock/bag filters suck.

    Larger weir type shapes that can be rapidly cleaned, or adjusted up so the clogged part is out of the way are good, we have those on the overflows on the behemoth tank.

    Finding a good easy to clean filter is not easy, that's also cheap, quiet, efficient etc.
    Very tough indeed.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
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