Ok so, got to work on the pal a little tonight,
Put the false bottom together with screen and put it in its place, left a bit of a lip to keep the zoo med clay balls in thier place.
You can't see it, however, there is a chunk cut out of the back corner of the egg crate (under the styro) for the water intake (and pump if I want more waterfall action that the filter spray-bar doesn't provide on the return side).
As you can see in both pics that I've been working a bit with the poly (little styro balls all over the place). I'm using a hacksaw blade to cut the poly and i'm sure it's probably causing most of the problem but, on my budget, ya use what ya got...
I think I might look into picking up some of the 1" thick insulation panel instead of the poly next.
Just ordered my canister filter last night from ebay, alot of good reviews on amazon and ebay from the same seller and a few other places so, for $49 and free shipping, i'll give 'er a try! I'll have it long before my project is finished so it's functionality will be verified on my 44g freshwater community just after arrival to adress any issues.
Says it's rated for 75gal (264gph flow) which will be a good bit more than I need but, I'd rather have more than not enough.
Still working out the details and although i'm having a hard time envisioning the finished product, i'm glad I have lots of examples to look at. Time is on my side since I don't have any frogs or lizards waiting for me to finish.
Any comments, suggestions are welcome...