Question of the Day Manifolds? Do you use one?

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Until yesterday I had plumbed a barbed Y to my return to feed a reactor running carbon and rowaphos. I now have an in sump (rear chamber for me) reactor. A lot less sketchy if I may say so myself..
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Vette67

Still learning after almost 25 years reefing
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I have an intake manifold, out of 3” PVC. I wanted to go big, so no matter what return pump I used, I would never outflow it. I also thought it would be cool to use clear PVC. Unfortunately, water is not that interesting, and there isn’t much to see. But the 3” ball valve was impressive to work with. It was huge!
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I run a Jebao DC 8000 manifold (I think). It runs:
Drip line
CaRx
Bio pellet Rx
GFO Rx

The manifold system is modular so I can add/remove sections to extend/reduce it. I can also swap in any internal pump with it so I’ve upgraded and downgraded once or twice.

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TheGambler

Active member
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Yes. Just replumbed and still not happy , but theres 1 outlet for 3 reactors, return outlet. A spare barbed outlet to be able to throw a spare submersible pump in and run tank, if something should happen. Another outlet thats capped if I want to add another tank on. Everything is currently running on a vectra m2.
 
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I have a SDC 7.0, new tank comes with the pictured manifold. Not sure if I’ll use it and am open to suggestions!
That's pretty much exactly what I did. I actually used that as a reference to build mine. The only thing I wish I would have done different was have a shut off for the entire manifold. The reason being is that sometimes I want to turn off something on the manifold say for cleaning, and I've already adjusted the valve on individual output where I want it. There's no good way to turn it off other than to turn the return pump off. If there was a shut off for the entire manifold I could just turn it off to do the service work and then turn it back on.

Here's a picture of my clone.

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Sisterlimonpot

Well-known member
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I have a separate Vectra in the sump dedicated to a manifold. It sends water to my CaRx, UV, and AWC. There's added ports for future expansion.

I personally use bean animal design for overflow which means tapping a manifold onto my main Vectra would just cause constant headaches with adjustments. I guess any overflow with a gate valve to control flow would be counter intuitive to using a manifold in the main return pump.
 
I have a separate Vectra in the sump dedicated to a manifold. It sends water to my CaRx, UV, and AWC. There's added ports for future expansion.

I personally use bean animal design for overflow which means tapping a manifold onto my main Vectra would just cause constant headaches with adjustments. I guess any overflow with a gate valve to control flow would be counter intuitive to using a manifold in the main return pump.
Here is how I got around that. I increased my pump speed by the approximate gph I wanted thru the item on the manifold. This then would cause my overflow to go into the emergency drain. So now I adjust the output on my manifold until the water level in the overflow is back where I want it.

I have been running this way for about 4 months without issue. I actually see more fluctuation in the Vectra pump speed after using feed mode than I do from this setup.

It almost seems like the Vectra isn't great at returning to the exact same speed after a mode change. One time I noticed the water was low in my overflow. Turned the pump off, and then back on. Problem solved. Other times I have seen the water level high, mind you I have not changed any settings. I just think however the software determines how much to speed up or slow down the pump isn't exact.

Not complaining, I really love the pump. It's nearly silent and moves lots of water.
 

Sisterlimonpot

Well-known member
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Here is how I got around that. I increased my pump speed by the approximate gph I wanted thru the item on the manifold. This then would cause my overflow to go into the emergency drain. So now I adjust the output on my manifold until the water level in the overflow is back where I want it.

I have been running this way for about 4 months without issue. I actually see more fluctuation in the Vectra pump speed after using feed mode than I do from this setup.

It almost seems like the Vectra isn't great at returning to the exact same speed after a mode change. One time I noticed the water was low in my overflow. Turned the pump off, and then back on. Problem solved. Other times I have seen the water level high, mind you I have not changed any settings. I just think however the software determines how much to speed up or slow down the pump isn't exact.

Not complaining, I really love the pump. It's nearly silent and moves lots of water.
The problem I had with adding a manifold to my main return pump wasn't the deliberate changes made to flow throughout the various reactors and compensating by adjustments. It's what happens when those reactors start to restrict flow or "channel" over time or in your case slow the pump for feeding and the media in the reactors settle. I would venture to guess that what you're experiencing and deduce as pump variation at start up is all those components settling after feed mode and diverting more/less flow to the main tank causing fluctuations in your emergency drain (which I assume you mean "open" drain if it's a bean animal design and not a herbie).

By shutting the pump off and back on again jolts the system back into equal librium.

We as hobbyists have come to accept that a ball valves and gate valves are great solution to regulating flow, which neither are. Both are designed to be open or closed. We use them because they sort of work as a restrictor thus thinking we're regulating the flow.

If we were to use actual regulators to control output to the tank and at each branch of the manifold, it wouldn't matter if a reactor clogged, channeled or even if the return pump fluctuated. Because the regulator wouldn't allow an increase or decrease.
 

evolved

Well-known member
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One pump runs my 270g DT (350g system); a Fluval SP6. It manifolds off to my CaRx, turf scrubber, and a media reactor.

I do keep a spare pump, and a couple spare impellers, just in case.

I also run a "bean animal" style overflow, but except when I shut off the turf scrubber to clean the screen, it doesn't bring me any hassle. And even then, it's just some water that trickles down the emergency drain; not a big deal for the 10 minutes I'm in the same area cleaning the screen.
 
I run manifold. I don't love it, but I hate array of pumps even more.

I tried several ways of manifold, it always bugs me that how much space it took. The PVC valves are big and hard to position under the cabinet while still leaving enough room to work around. Also unused port is eye sort and criminally wasting space. So this time I tried to use quick connect for manifold instead.
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So far they work better for spaces and changeability. But the down side is, the flow restriction is high even for 1/2" one.
 
That's pretty much exactly what I did. I actually used that as a reference to build mine. The only thing I wish I would have done different was have a shut off for the entire manifold. The reason being is that sometimes I want to turn off something on the manifold say for cleaning, and I've already adjusted the valve on individual output where I want it. There's no good way to turn it off other than to turn the return pump off. If there was a shut off for the entire manifold I could just turn it off to do the service work and then turn it back on.

Here's a picture of my clone.

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I sure hope that manifold is supported. That looks sketch!
 

AcanthurusRex

Well-known member
Location
Dallas
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I had one originally. Never used it. Simplified and removed it.
The tank is a RedSea and the plumbing "unions" are ABS and appear to rot after a few years. I will not put any kind of stress on these connections.
 
That's pretty much exactly what I did. I actually used that as a reference to build mine. The only thing I wish I would have done different was have a shut off for the entire manifold. The reason being is that sometimes I want to turn off something on the manifold say for cleaning, and I've already adjusted the valve on individual output where I want it. There's no good way to turn it off other than to turn the return pump off. If there was a shut off for the entire manifold I could just turn it off to do the service work and then turn it back on.

Here's a picture of my clone.

View attachment 40856
nice build, so clean.

BTW, you probably want to add support to the manifold assembly. Otherwise, the weight of it might cause the bulkhead to leak.
 
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