Overflow choices

Discussion in 'Equipment' started by bondolo, Nov 23, 2013.

  1. bondolo

    bondolo Supporting Member

    I am finally going to drill my 2x4x1 60G frag tank. I have been working on the sump and other preparations. (Moved the water tanks today). I need to make a decision on which overflow system to used. The basic choices are:
    • Back mount
      • 700GPH (single) Glass-Holes overflow
      • 1500GPH (dual) Glass-Holes overflow (twice the fun for reliability)
      • XAQUA X-INOUT (I haven't found a US vendor yet)
      • Something else?
    • Standpipe (bottom drill)
      • Maggie Muffler single 1 1/2"
      • Maggie Muffle dual 1 or 1 1/4" (for reliability)
      • something else?
    I am leaning toward backmount because I have found the standpipe in my current tank to be an obstacle to racks, etc. Two of them would be even worse.

    Suggestions, warnings, alternatives?
  2. bluprntguy

    bluprntguy Webmaster

  3. bondolo

    bondolo Supporting Member

    Cool! This looks like a good alternative to the glass holes overflow.
  4. Coral reefer

    Coral reefer President

    Scar bird was talking about something cool. Maybe it wa the ghost. He doesn't post much. Probly pm him or info.
    If you could do external box with side or back drill that would be sweet!
  5. HiFidelity

    HiFidelity Guest

    I just started a thread on this a couple of days ago.
    Basically I decided to take the benefits from different designs and build them into my own application. Here are the basic aspects I found to be most important:
    -looks, it has to look decent
    -leak proof
    -no bubbles
    -surface skim performance

    Best looking is external overflow attached to the back of the tank, this choice rules out acrylic overflow box. Safely doable with glass.

    Silence is achieved best by using either bean animal or herbie overflow.

    The most leak proof design is using internal box + bean animal overflow

    Either herbie or bean animal can be dead silent & on sump side the outlet needs to be submerged so you don't hear water crashing down.

    Bubbles are eliminated entirely with both herbie or bean animal since they run full syphon, also submerged outlet keeps bubbles from entering after the overflow.

    Lastly & this is mostly overlooked is surface skim, I think that weirs are more headache than benefit and personally I'm going with a smooth overflow box, no teeth or anything. The benefit is a very effective way to skim the surface of the water at a rate that simply can't be achieved with weirs, this effect is multiplied exponentially when you go with a coast to coast type overflow box.

    I'll be using Herbie overflow (this is similar to bean animal or ghost but 2 pipes instead of 3) with 24" long 3"x3" box and no weir, I'm oversizing the heck out of the 2 tubes instead of running 3 which max out at 1400 gph without counting emergency drain, this going into a 45 gal tank. I'm not sure if DIY is an option for you or not but if it is I can certainly help or play guinea pig shall you choose to build something similar to what I'm planning...
    Last edited: Nov 24, 2013
  6. sfsuphysics

    sfsuphysics Supporting Member

    While the Ghost overflow is sexy, it's bloody expensive. I do like the Xqua or the OceanLife ones too, however with no US distributors it might be a pain to get one. I'm also not quite sold on the fact that such a small hole can be that effective at skimming water from the tank.
  7. bondolo

    bondolo Supporting Member

    The ghost overflow does look cool though darn expensive.

    I did have a previous issue with surface skimming in my current frag tank which had an under weir and then an over weir. You could see the slick on the surface after feeding. I have since removed the under weir. Remember, it's over weir for surface skim, under weir for micro bubble elimination. (Not how I did it unfortunately).

    That said, the coast to coast advocates seem to over prioritize surface skimming. I'm pretty sure even a standard overflow or something like the xaqua is adequate. As long as you have some surface skim happening 24x7 it's going to be hard for anything to accumulate.
  8. bluprntguy

    bluprntguy Webmaster

    I looked into both the xaqua and the oceanlife when I built my tank a few years ago:

    The oceanlife requires that you drill two holes in very close proximity to each other. Also, you have to get the holes in the right location to each other as the return and overflow are all one piece. It seems like I found somewhere in the UK that was willing to ship it, but I remember it was really expensive. I decided against this one because of the hole configuration issues and my uneasiness drilling two holes so close together.

    The xaqua can be left as one piece or broken into separate return and overflow. You can contact the manufacturer directly. There was a US distributor, but it was actually cheaper to order it direct and have it sent overnight from Europe when I checked. It's on metric, so you may find that our standard hoses don't fit. You can order the hoses from the manufacturer when you order the overflow. The US distributor didn't offer the hoses, just the overflow/return box. There are some complaints that the overflow is noisy and the return drastically lowers your return pump performance due to the surge that's built in.

    I ended up doing an upturned elbow for my overflow with and external durso to reduce overflow noise and a standard lockline return.
  9. aqua-nut

    aqua-nut Supporting Member

    Mr. Saltwater demo's it at the 6:30 mark of:

    Looks slick. Agree on the $$! :p

    Tagging along. I'm trying to decide what to do with the frag tank I got at the auction. My first priority is silence. All the simple standpipe setups I've been around were very loud. Not just the trickle of running water but full out gurgles!
  10. bondolo

    bondolo Supporting Member

    I'm sorry I had missed that thread. I have to admit that I'm not reading reef sites (including BAR) as much as I should.

    I wish I had time for doing it DIY and really curious how yours turns out. I am going to have to be weak and "buy" rather than "build" because I have to admit that it won't happen otherwise.
  11. HiFidelity

    HiFidelity Guest

    Hey no apology necessary, your application may be completely different thus 2 separate topics are more than necessary.

    If I finish mine and if it happens before you pull the trigger and buy something perhaps you can stop by & take a look at it. If you like it I will build you a similar box for free how about that? :D
  12. humu

    humu Guest

    Sorry for diggin' up an old thread, but it fits my current situation. Planning to upgrade into a rimless 45G 24x24x18 and it needs to be drilled for an overflow. Trying to decide what setup would be best.

    Silent Herbie overflow sounds awesome, but expensive and large for a relatively small tank. I would need to set up a large overflow box and drill two holes... or the ghost overflow....even more expensive...

    Currently I am leaning toward the above mentioned bottom mounted Maggie Muffler or a Hofer Gurgle buster, using a 1 or 1.5 inch bulkhead....

    or would I better of with side mounted 700GPH Glass-Hole setup? That way I get surface skimming....

    BTW, the below pic is what I have in my current 30G 24x24x12 setup....a bottom mounted cap overflow setup. Makes a bearable amount of noise...definitely quieter than the durso overflow I had in my previous setup...

  13. humu

    humu Guest

    Coral reefer likes this.
  14. Coral reefer

    Coral reefer President

    Get that one!
  15. HiFidelity

    HiFidelity Guest

    $99 for ghost overflow is a great deal.

    I pulled the trigger on the 16" version
  16. wpeterson

    wpeterson Webmaster

    I was just going to post the same thing.

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