Building An Obsession is a new Acrylics Works company based out of Texas that is building some sumps and accessories that really live up to the name. While passing through Orlando, we always visit the coral insanity better known as World Wide Corals and for once it was not a coral frag or colony or rare fish that caught our eye, but a stack of some of the sexiest simplest reef aquarium sumps we’ve ever seen.
World Wide Corals had just received the first pallet of these exquisitely crafted acrylic sumps and their presentation made us want to get one on the spot. The use of white acrylic is totally hot right now for making reef sumps, especially on the top and bottom and three sides, but we like how the BAO Sump showed restraint by keeping it to the top, bottom and back, allowing light to come in from the sides so you can still see what’s going on inside.
Building An Obsession sumps are super simple, broken down into three parts including a nice catchment for the drain that spills over into a filter sock for mechnical filtration, and this salt-spray prone area is contained by a nice tight fitting clear lid. The second chamber is a basic stable water area for protein skimming with an adjustable spillway for tuning your skimmer’s optimum water height.
The standout model in BAO’s lineup is their square sump made especially to maximize efficiency of the space found under the two by two footprint of some of the recently popular cube tank models. All of the sump models were expertly finished with the right amount of buffing and chamfering of the edges – Lou & Vic made fun of me for a minute as I ran my hands over every edge, inside and out, but your hands can sense things your eyes can’t easily pick out.
BAO sumps come with a glued-in probe holder but we would rather have seen this be an accessory, or an add-on that simply slides over one of the sump’s edges so that the user can decide for themselves if they want to use it, and where they want to place it. The best part of all about BAO’s sump lineup was the reasonable pricing at the retail level that Lou told us ballparked in the $300 to $475 range for the four sizes and models we happen to be looking at.
This is going to be a big year for new sump and sump designs and we’ve already seen heaps of new products and manufacturers throw their hat into the ring. If Building An Obsession can keep up with the demand, their unique acrylic-smithing style and design is likely to be leading the charge of the next generation of sumps. [Building An Obsession]