"Giant Mini Fridge" - Red Sea E-170

Discussion in 'Tank Journals' started by revnull, Mar 5, 2017.

  1. Coral reefer

    Coral reefer President

    I would seriously recommend a brand name pump, or at least have a spare ready...
     
  2. revnull

    revnull Guest

    Thanks for the suggestion Mike. :D

    I think this point has been made in other forums, but let's take the brand name Vectra S1 as an example. It sells for ~$275 on average and is considered good quality from anyone that ever bought one. My Jebao sells for ~$80 on average and has mixed reviews on reliability and advertised flow rates. Now, in a standard CYA scenario, I can buy 2 Jebaos (~$160), store one for a rainy day and still come out ahead. Worst case, I get a failure every 6-9 months and buy the newest generation "cheap pump" and still paid less than 1 Vectra. Or it's equally possible that this return pump will last years like my Jebao powerheads. Point being, please do not assume I didn't research all available options and make a targeted decision based on my desired objective and cost to benefit analysis with an eye towards future failure scenarios.

    That being said, I have an old Ehiem 1200 (something) that is currently running since I stood up the tank months ago as a backup. ;)
     
  3. Vhuang168

    Vhuang168 Supporting Member

    How long before that situation doesn't hold true anymore and you spent more money on Jebaos than 1 Vectra? I can't venture to guess but that is the risk you have to be willing to take and most figure that out sooner than later.

    Jebaos lasting longer than a year is not unheard of. But Jebaos lasting for a only a few months is the more common scenario.

    But ultimately, it is your decision and choice.
     
    Tmjvb likes this.
  4. RandyC

    RandyC Supporting Member

    I think what's often left out of these arguments is time of failure. Everyone (I think) understands the cost benefits. For me, it's worth 2-3x times the cost to have less a chance of failure at inconvenient times when I can't be there to replace it. Not just a failure when I'm at work, but when I'm away for the weekend or a 10-day vacation.


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    Flagg37 likes this.
  5. kinetic

    kinetic Webmaster

    Everyone's approaches are different. I'm in the camp of valuing reliability a bit more. I'm too stressed out as it is, and I hope to use the hobby as a way to have more fun and enjoy. I just can't cope with more stress I guess.

    I've heard Jebao isn't too bad. I think you'll be OK for awhile! If it's a good copy and you do regular maintenance on it (like any pump) you'll probably get a lot of use out of it.
     
  6. scuzy

    scuzy Supporting Member

    The return pump is the one I wouldn't want to fail at any time a its feeding my whole system. I have a jebao in my softy tank but then again I can sleep nicely if that was out compare to my main tank with all my expensive stuff.


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  7. revnull

    revnull Guest

    The implication of quality is often anecdotal. There are no mean time between failure statistics (that I know of) for any of the devices in our tanks that point to 1 device outlasting another on average. Based purely on the price point I would venture to guess that there are an order of magnitude greater number of cheap/chinese/knockoff devices in use versus their more costly counterparts. Anyone that deals with devices at scale will tell you than the more you have the more will fail. You will hear about nearly every failure since it usually comes from a very dissatisfied customer. But that doesn't change the global failure rate. 1 in 1,000 failed vectras will not have the same bad PR as 100 in 100,000 cheap pumps (small scale example because I'm bad at math) even though the failure rate is the same.

    As for my calculated risk. Should the DCP-5000 fail in the middle of the night or while I'm traveling, that only cuts off the sump and supplemental filtration from the display. Since this an E-170, the AIO sump and original circulation pump in the back of the display will keep things flowing, heated and topped off. This is pretty low risk.

    Now that I've drawn a very hard line in the sand about my cheapness, I'll be the first to let you know when my Jebao dies and I replace it with a vectra or COR. :p
     
  8. Coral reefer

    Coral reefer President

    Your choice. Didn't knock it or you. Just making sure.
    Failed pumps not always just gonna stop working. I've seen and heard it much worse. Melted crap getting into tank and fires come to mind. Good luck.
     
    revnull likes this.
  9. revnull

    revnull Guest

    I didn't mean for this thread to morph into an ideological discussion. I would still love any critique and advice anyone has to offer. I will do my best to not be so defensive. :p

    Back to the build. I plopped the pump into a bucket to see it run before trying to figure out my plumping plan. Man, this thing pushes some water! Since the DC pump has variable output control, I do not think I'll need a control valve near the output. Instead, I'm thinking of a service union high enough that I can swap through different pumps without having to completely readjust my return manifold.

    [​IMG]

    Also got a chance last night to rinse and scrub the rocks before a dip in a 10:1 bleach soak. Planning on a week long bleach cycle, then power wash to strip the dead stuff from the surface. Let that dry for a few days in the sun, then another few days in an RO/DI + Prime bath. Followed by aquascaping/gluing/puttying then in the tank to cycle.

    [​IMG]
     
  10. revnull

    revnull Guest

    Started my experiment in return manifolds this morning. Luckily, I had the old leaking Red Sea return fitting. I used a 3/4" close nipple to add a sch80 90.

    [​IMG]

    I removed the o-ring from the old barbed fitting and pushed it down to the bottom seat of the Red Sea fitting. This seems to have filled the gap left once the nipple was fully bottomed out.

    [​IMG]

    Everything seems to fit together nicely.

    [​IMG]

    Most of the plumbing pics I've been able to find are for the reefer 170. The MAX E-170 has the return line pushed all the way into the far left. This means I had to extend the line out and "T" to the right since the return pump is in the back.

    [​IMG]

    Still debating on the final configuration and uncertain how to fasten the manifold to the cabinet. Do you think that long run it accommodate a 1" Neptune flow meter?

    [​IMG]

    [[​IMG]

    Wondering if I should hard plumb all the way down to the pump or use hose barbs and silicone tubing to reduce pump vibration transfer to manifold/cabinet.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Sep 30, 2017
  11. scuzy

    scuzy Supporting Member

    Check valve is useless. It'll get clog and stop working


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  12. revnull

    revnull Guest

    Does anyone have a FS100 installed that can tell me how long it is? I read somewhere that you need a few inches before and after the unions for most accurate readings. I feel like this is not possible in such a small cabinet.
     
  13. xcaret

    xcaret Supporting Member

    Silicone hose will dampen most or all vibrations and yeah, ditch the check valve.
     
  14. revnull

    revnull Guest

    After 2 days of bucket burn in, I swapped out my old vibrating Eheim with the DCP-5000. Until I figure out my return manifold, I'm stilling using a barbed fitting and hose.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  15. scuzy

    scuzy Supporting Member

    Think the hose will have smoother flow


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  16. Flagg37

    Flagg37 Officer at large

    People always say that about check valves, and I understand the potential, but that has not been my experience. I still keep my return plumbing sitting right at the surface of the water to break the siphon just in case though.
     
  17. Gablami

    Gablami Supporting Member

    I just don't see the need for a check valve. Just have a siphon break drilled in and have a big enough sump (or run low enough) that it can tolerate a return pump malfunction with room to spare. Why count on a check valve to prevent an overflow into your living room?


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  18. Flagg37

    Flagg37 Officer at large

    Redundancy is the name of the game. :) I would agree that sole reliance on the check valve is not a good idea. Sole reliance on any single method is never as safe as having a back up. Even having a small hole drilled in the plumbing to break the siphon can fail. Salt creep could build up over the hole or a snail could crawl up into it. I think these are unlikely scenarios but how many stories have we all heard of the craziest thing happening that caused a failure.
     
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  19. revnull

    revnull Guest

    After a 40 hour bleach soak and a power wash.

    [​IMG]

    After the power wash, I let the rock dry in the sun for a few hours. I dumped the bleach water, gave the trash can a good rinse and scrub. Filled back up with fresh tap water and a double dose of Prime. I'll let that stew for a few days then rinse and repeat with RO/DI + Prime.
     
  20. revnull

    revnull Guest

    After some additional reading on other Red Sea threads, I decided to simplify my cabinet lighting.

    I decided on the OxyLED T-02US
    https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07216WZZQ

    [​IMG]

    This model has the same features of the more popular 36 LED version, but in a more compact layout (2 rows of LEDs) that fit better in my cabinet.

    [​IMG]

    This photo doesn't do the light output justice.

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    The adhesive backed magnetic strip makes removing to recharge the light a breeze.

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    No as bright as my Ikea LEDs, but certainly bright enough to justify the switch to a wire free motion activated solution.

    [​IMG]
     
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