wavemakers vs circulation pumps

Discussion in 'Equipment: Setup and Discussion' started by reeffamily, Oct 8, 2017.

  1. reeffamily

    reeffamily Senior Member
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    so wondering which way everyone goes. pretty sure it's just mostly circulation pumps but wondering why one way over the other??? thanks for your time
     
  2. RSnodgrass

    RSnodgrass Negative Ghost Rider the skimmer is full.
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    Just to clarify are you saying standard powerhead or closed loop circulation pump?
     
  3. OP
    reeffamily

    reeffamily Senior Member
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    standard power head... ie vortex, tunze
     
  4. RSnodgrass

    RSnodgrass Negative Ghost Rider the skimmer is full.
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    I've only had standard ph's myself because the cost of a little on off switch is a deterrent. However there are very few dives I've been on where the current is continuous and from one direction.

    An exception to the cost would be someone needing several ph's... a wave maker would likely reduce the need for additional ph's due to them no longer canceling each other out as the currents collide. IMO
     
  5. capman

    capman I contributed!
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    These days (and often even in the past, depending on the system you had set up) there is not necessarily that much distinction anymore, since the better flow generating pumps (Vortech, higher end Tunze, Wav, Gyre, etc) are controllable and can create all sorts of different flow patterns in a tank, and even standing waves in some cases.

    In the past (say, 20 years ago) this sort of thing did not work as well - there were wavemaker timer type devices that would turn pumps on and off according to various programs, but powerheads and pumps tended to not like being turned on and off like that. The newer generation of flow generating pumps and associated controllers do this sort of thing much better, and in much more sophisticated ways.

    There are also other sorts of wavemakers of course, including dump bucket type systems, and others, which can create crazy cool currents in tanks, but this is a much more elaborate thing to set up. And given the sophistication of what is available now, I feel less compelled than in the past to pursue these sorts of options (though that crazy cool system they used to have at Saltwater Empire was, well, crazy cool!).
     
  6. LoganLaBonne

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    In a previous tank I had tried to supplement flow by going to a higher GPH circulating pump in addition to the wave makers. The issue I ran into is that the increased flow was not allowing the bubble trap in my sump ample time to remove the micro bubbles from my skimmer. New setup has a much lower flow through the sump with it accounting for about 5-10% of total water movement with the remaining coming from power heads.
     
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  7. RSnodgrass

    RSnodgrass Negative Ghost Rider the skimmer is full.
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    The concern is real! I'm still trying alternatives in sump design in order to go without PH's in the main.
     
  8. OP
    reeffamily

    reeffamily Senior Member
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    I actually run 2- 3500gph dc controllable return pumps with each pump about 7ft up from the nozzles. so after lose of pressure to the nozzles what comes out of each individual nozzle is about 350gph. all nozzles are movable rotationally. I love this set up but it never fails that you always has a dead spot which is what got me into looking at actual wave makers. make sense??? I have never used any powerheads in 20 years. this brings out my question of powerheads or just increase pump size
     
  9. RSnodgrass

    RSnodgrass Negative Ghost Rider the skimmer is full.
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    If money were no object I'd go with a wave maker/controllable ph's. BRS has a good video on it comparing various available pumps.

    If money is an object I'd go with regular ph's on timers and hope they last until prices reduced. But I'd limit the number of times they cycle to a handful per 24hrs vs hourly. Also make sure that all pumps are set to run at a time of day you'd notice if there is one needing to be cleaned and failed to start.
     
  10. LoganLaBonne

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    I saw a tank recently that had PH's on the back of the tank rather than the sides like most. It made it so the pumps were not ever obstructing views. You wouldn't be able to do this with a Vortec but I'd bet you could with a Jebao. I've had several on my tanks and they are surprisingly powerful.
     
  11. LoganLaBonne

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    Also, the Jebaos are about 1/5th the price of Vortechs but still seem very well built.
     
  12. OP
    reeffamily

    reeffamily Senior Member
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    ordered one today. wave maker. fun to see what hapens
     
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  13. LoganLaBonne

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    What brand and model did you end up going with?
     
  14. OP
    reeffamily

    reeffamily Senior Member
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    went with the sunsun, cheap but does 3400gph. kinda testing needed output. so if I don't like the results no biggie. if it works great then I'll upgrade
     
  15. LoganLaBonne

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    Good choice. I had a couple of those a few years back and they worked just fine. Upgraded shortly after though so I could get something with wave and reef crest modes. Now the old PH's do an excellent job at mixing up new saltwater.
     
  16. acharpenter

    acharpenter Senior Member
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    I must be missing something - why couldn't you put a Vortec on the back of the tank?
     
  17. LoganLaBonne

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    Definitely wasn't meaning to say you can't. Just that pointing it along the short width of the aquarium probably isn't optimal. Having something that can mount on the back, and then be pointed the long way is probably better.
     
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  18. acharpenter

    acharpenter Senior Member
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    Thanks for the clarification - knew I was missing something there!

    I am planning to mount at least one Vortech to the back wall of my 93 cube - I also had one mounted on the back wall of my Tek 70 years ago and all corals and fish did well but I agree with the thought process on long way VS short way overall.
     
  19. LoganLaBonne

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    We 100% agree! I had a Marineland 93 cube a few years back and an MP40 or a couple of MP10's are exactly what I would have done if I could have afforded it!
     

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