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New setup. Footprint and Filtration?

Discussion in 'General Plant Topics' started by shoggoth43, May 31, 2009.

  1. shoggoth43

    shoggoth43 Lifetime Charter Member
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    I should be removing the 45 I have going now for my Discus in the near future.

    I'm not sure if I'm going with the 48x18" footprint of a 75/90 or the 48x24" footprint of one of the 120/150 tanks. I also see there's a 72x18" footprint for the 120gallon as well. Given that I've got the room for any of those, but probably not for the 72x24" since I do actually have to walk around the tank from time to time and I'll need to get to the light switches, can anyone give me some pros/cons on the footprints? The tanks are currently on the concrete slab so height is not really a factor here.

    I've got an Eheim 2028 right now and I'll definitely be getting something else to go with it. I can either go with another of the Eheim 2028 units as it comes with the media and has a relatively decent cost. My other thought was one of their monster Pro3 units, possibly with the heating elements built in. A major drawback to this is the cost and the fact that the media does not come with it. I've been fairly happy with the Eheim so I have no real reason to switch brands other than cost. Some of the other brands do have more flow but the Eheim 2260 model could have a pump swap for some brutally high flow. I supposed I could do something similar for the 2180 model as well. I DO like that the main prefilter on the 2180 is actually on top of the filter so it's easy to get to for maintenance.

    I just had my other German Ram die for unknown reasons. I'm beginning to suspect the water company has been adding some stuff without telling us. I've asked for a water quality report but I have no idea what I'm going to find. To that end, I'm thinking of RO filtration or at least some sort of water filtration before I add any of it to the tank. I've heard a carbon block will deal with chlorine in the water, but does this work for chloramine at all? Any recommendations on an RO system or any other options I could try?

    Any thoughts and suggestions are welcome.

    -
    S
     
  2. Gerryd

    Gerryd Plant Guru Team
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    Hi,

    Congrats on the upgrade!

    IMO, I would try anything that gets MORE volume, so the 120/150 rather than the 75/90.

    Length is good if you have fish that school lengthwise and you like to see them go back and forth.

    Depth is good as it gives more perspective and room for scaping.

    Picture a center based mound of plants in the middle of the 24 wide and the Discus do laps around that...........

    BOTH is best :) Can you not do the 72x24? I have maybe 6-8" behind the tank, so no going behind, but after 7+ years, has not yet been an issue....

    I have pre-drilled so no need for much room back there.

    Will you do pre-drilled? Has many advantages........

    For sure double your filtration or more........

    Are you doing c02? You may need to change/upgrade your diffusion method.........

    Light? Substrate? More flow for the bigger tank?
     
  3. shoggoth43

    shoggoth43 Lifetime Charter Member
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    I'm thinking drilled bottom. I'm not sure how I'm going to do that. I was considering the dual overflows and using the cannisters in those. i.e. the water in the overflow boxes will drop instead of the tank level. I'd love to do rimless with hanging lumiere, but I'll have bengals literally fishing out of the tank if I do that. :)

    I've got the SuMo CO2 regulator. Probably going some sort of needlewheel for that. Lighting is probably the wildcard. I'm planning on lower lighting levels. I will probably try some LEDs or a couple 4' T5 bulbs to start. I'm thinking spread vs. intensity. One of the reasons I'm going with the cannisters is for the greater flow for wattage. I may looking into a koralia or two or maybe plumb in a dedicated recirculating loop. This should hlopefully give me decent flow for less wattage. I have no idea on the substrate just yet. There's little access to substrates in the stores around here other than flourite or ecocomplete. Given what I've found with Discus, I'm considering capping it with silver sand or similar.

    Right now my biggest issue is water quality from the tap. If I can't get a handle on that I may have to reconsider some stuff.

    -
    S
     
  4. Gerryd

    Gerryd Plant Guru Team
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    Well, I have a reef ready with twin overflow, and I now have them WITH a closed loop......Both drain to the pump via a T and the returns are hidden in the weirs as well.

    Works great and offers surface skimming...

    EZ to do as well......

    I have done many crypts over the years and never had a mineralized substrate.

    They still do well.

    Spread will be better for low light IMO....T8 or T12 sounds fine even......

    Well your guys must be more adventurous because my two (domestic shorthairs) pretty much ignore the tanks except to get a drink...... both open top and I KNOW they can get up there.......
     
  5. rthomas

    rthomas Guru Class Expert

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    Hi Gerry,
    Any pics of this setup esp the overflow part. I am sorry but I simply am not able to visualize this. Water flows into the overflow, do you have something like a Durso standpipe setup? I remember looking at your setup images quite a while ago but I cannot recall seeing a sump for the overflow.

    This sounds interesting. Appreciate if you can detail it out, with pictures if possible. I have lost that link. Thank you Gerry.
     
  6. Gerryd

    Gerryd Plant Guru Team
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    Hi Roger,

    I will take some more pics tomorrow, but attached is a pic on how the two intakes are merged to the pump.

    Basically the intakes and outtakes are BOTH within the weirs on each end. The intake is 1" and the outlets are 3/4". They run alongside each other inside the overflow as the bulkheads are side by side. The INTAKE pipe I cut to about 6" BELOW the water surface inside the weir.

    I then use an intake strainer and sponge assembly that slips in the 1"pvc pipe.

    These each then connect via the gray flex hose you see to the T in the middle. Then to the pump.

    The outlet of the pump eventually routes up through the weirs and into the tank.

    After the pump, the system has 3 parallel legs that are then merged back before splitting again to each side for the returns.

    You will get a mini-sump as the weirs intake is 6-8" below the water surface. So you get skimming AND NO waterline mark... Have to fill of course, but stays good for a few days at least.

    I am going to trim my intakes so they are only 2-3" off the bottom. That will give me more 'sump' in case.

    Does make noisy waterfall when lower and will degas c02 a bit, but the mazzei can handle it and the closed loop helps a lot.

    Hope this helps.
     
  7. shoggoth43

    shoggoth43 Lifetime Charter Member
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    One possible idea I'm toying with is to have a standpipe/overflow that goes directly to the drain from within the wier. I would then have a constant drip feed from the tap ( filtered or maybe straight RO feed ). This would let me have a small drop over the wier for surface skimming and then the "sump" levels would be maintained at that level. It would also give me a constant water change throughout the week so I would only need to replace water for vacuuming purposes. In that case I may need to either fill the tank up to full levels or at least enough to get the water over the top of the wier(s). The way cannisters work I wouldn't be able to let it slowly feed back up as it seems you only really have a half hour or so before the bacteria starts to die off in a cannister without any flow through it.

    I'm not entirely sure how that would affect my EI dosing amounts though so I might need to get some test kits in order to overdose enough that it becomes estimative again.

    -
    S
     
  8. tim85

    tim85 Junior Poster

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    Ah great. That might be helpful to me too.
     
  9. Gerryd

    Gerryd Plant Guru Team
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    Hi all,

    Here are the pics promised...

    Pic 1 shows the INSIDE of the right weir. You can see the sponge about halfway in the overflow. This pipe USED to be taller and the sponge had a float inside that adjusted to the water level inside the weir.

    This is the pipe I plan to LOWER again.

    The water in the weir can NEVER go lower than the bottom of the sponge, as that is where the lowest part of the strainer is.

    Pic 2 shows the same weir from the TOP.

    Pic 3 shows BENEATH the tank. The right pipe is the intake and the left the outlet.

    Please advise if any of this is still unclear.
     
  10. shoggoth43

    shoggoth43 Lifetime Charter Member
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    Cool,

    At least I know that part of my plan will work out well. Now I just have to figure out whether to:

    A) get another 2028 filter and use both on the tank with the knowledge that I'll probably need a koralia for flow (~125 gph )

    b) get the 2080/2180 filter for some monster filtration and probably STILL need a koralia for flow. ( ~250 gph )

    900 gph for a 10x flow is easier to come by than 1800 gph, but probably not by too much...

    -
    S



     
  11. shoggoth43

    shoggoth43 Lifetime Charter Member
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    Ok. Looking at costs... I can pretty much write off the Eheim 2180. Nice filter, too much $$$. Just filling it up will cost ~150$ and the cheapest I can find it is 430$ but 20$ shipped. So 600$??? If I go with the 2080 I'm still looking at 550$. No way I can swing that. Too bad, seems like a really nice unit and LOOKS pretty neat.

    The XP3 once you figure in the same media as the 2028 ends up roughly the same. If you don't factor in the media I save 100$ The 2217 is at a pretty nice price point though,
     
  12. rthomas

    rthomas Guru Class Expert

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    shoggoth43, I don't mean to hijack this thread. I will make it quick...


    (Blush) but I simply cannot digest this. I suppose you either slip the strainer or screwed in into the PVC pipe. Then the sponge slips into the strainer?

    Is that the Durso standpipe?

    How could the sponge float when it was slipped over the strainer/PVC ?
    (I feel so stupid :eek: )


    Wouldn't it be the other way? I mean, if you were to lower the pipe, water the falls in the weir will reach the strainer faster, so you have a 'shorter' sump (inside the weir). And by making the pipe longer means water will initially falls inside the weir, then slowly rises up till it reach the strainer and drain to your pump. This way will have a 'higher sump'.

    Dang, is everyone laughing at me now ? :eek:
     
  13. shoggoth43

    shoggoth43 Lifetime Charter Member
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    No worries. :)

    I've heard the Hofer Gurglebuster is even better than the durso standpipe.

    Hofer Gurgle Buster Construction

    You are correct in that a longer standpipe would mean a higher water level in the sump. However, you can have a much shorter standpipe as well. The shorter pipe would just let you run with a much lower water level. You don't have to run the water that level though and can still run with the higher water level. It would let you run for longer before you would have to top off the tank as the water level in the weir ( now acting as a sump ) drops over time. It adds some flexibility and since it is more likely to always be submerged by a decent amount, should prove to be quiet as you are less likely to suck in air if you make sure the water levels are always high.


    -
    S

     
  14. Gerryd

    Gerryd Plant Guru Team
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    Hi Roger,

    No worries........

    The pipe is NOT a durso, it was simple 1" pvc..........

    Okay, the intake pipe is 1" pvc. At the TOP of the pipe is a 1" pvc slip coupler.

    The intake strainer fits INTO the coupler as it is a slip connection. This could be threaded if you desire. You would just need a slip/threaded adaptor.

    The sponge has a hole in the middle. This slides OVER the strainer, so the strainer is now INSIDE the sponge.

    The 'float' device fits INSIDE the strainer, so it would go up or down easily. The sponge did not move, the float did INSIDE the strainer as the diameter was less............

    I will add more pics later...

    S,

    How about using the NC or OC canisters? They are about 125-175 (with media included) and have more capacity than the eheim (I think).

    Then a pump to run the canisters and extra flow and you should be good to go.

    I like the weir and closed loop setup as it works very nicely.
     
  15. shoggoth43

    shoggoth43 Lifetime Charter Member
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    Well, good and bad news on the water front....

    Still no idea what happened to the Ram. No one else seems affected, but that's not too good. The discus are definitely affected by the periodic water changes, or lack thereof depending so I'm probably looking at some sort of auto water changing. The good news is the MWRA supplies the water here, so I was able to get a decent report on what I'm getting out of the tap. A side bonus is that it's very likely that most of the LFS in the area all get the same water I do. I'm dealing with a target of pH ~9.3 ( their target ) out of the tap, and "very soft water" which jives with my uncalibrated hardness test kit. I'm sure there's CO2 in there which drops it a touch. And Chloramine.... I can grab a carbon block filter at the local BORG/HomeDespot store which would work for chlorine, but I don't know if there's enough carbon in there to touch the chloramine or not. I might be able to toss in another cartridge or loose carbon somehow, but I just don't know enough about that. It'd be nice to not have to mess with tap water conditioner on top of everything else and vastly simplifies a water change system.

    Gerry,

    I've thought about the OC cannisters. I've also been looking at the Maxijet pumps as their nj4500 and nj5500 ( I think those are the models ) have the enclosed impeller and seem to really throw some water around without too much power used. I was contemplating maybe the two eheim units for bio and then plumbing in the maxijet or similar for some serious flow. I could probably throw an OC on that and rig up a reactor or similar for the CO2. Given a 90 gallon should have 900GPH or so, I need to make up quite a bit from the Eheims.

    I'm really starting to like the idea of the internal weirs as sumps. I should be able to toss the heaters in there if needed and I'll have the efficiency of the closed loop plumbing compared to the lug-it-over-the-top loss of a sump under the tank. Whether or not that's a practical consideration or not remains to be seen. What I won't get is the extra water volume which may or not be an issue, although the added space in the stand is certainly welcome. Add in an automated water changer and this may work out pretty well.

    -
    S
     
  16. shoggoth43

    shoggoth43 Lifetime Charter Member
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  17. Gerryd

    Gerryd Plant Guru Team
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    S,

    I understand that bead and sand filters are the bomb, but no personal exp......

    Looks like a great filter though.......

    Why not get the OC 340 and then the OC bio unit like the 318....

    http://www.redseafish.com/languages%5C95%5Cpdf%5Coceanclear.pdf

    Get a decent pump like an Iwaki 40 and run the two in series or parallel.

    If a good pump, you can have a third leg to simply divert any UNUSED flow
    back to the tank. If you oversize the pump, may be no need for a separate powerhead for flow..........

    I think you will like the weir/closed loop. Skims nicely and keeps the waterline issue at bay..........if you'll forgive the pun :)

    Beware of heater in there if the water level goes too low........Like you go away unexpectedly for 2-3 days.......

    Roger,

    Here are two more pics that I think may help............

    The one pic shows how the strainer/sponge assembly work. I tossed the float so can't show it, but it sat inside the strainer.......I think I have an old pic somewhere if you need it.

    The other shows the same, but you can see where the level in the weir is LOWER than normal, but no effect on filtration or water level mark.

    Only issue is that this would ADD lots of 02 when it falls very low and you have a high waterfall effect.

    Hope this helps.
     
  18. shoggoth43

    shoggoth43 Lifetime Charter Member
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    Is the only practical difference between the ocean clean and the nu-clear models the inlet/outlet size?

    -
    S
     
  19. Gerryd

    Gerryd Plant Guru Team
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    Pretty much from what I can see...........

    The models are similar, mech, bio, etc.

    OC offers a built-in UV model that NC does not............

    The NC offer an option to double the capacity by fitting a second unit ON TOP of the other and then connecting them as one...........

    I think either will do well. I know Tom likes the OC as do others, and there are a few of us (like me) that use the NC models... I have the 533 and 547.

    Either bio unit comes with bio-balls, but all can be replaced with whatever you want..........
     
  20. shoggoth43

    shoggoth43 Lifetime Charter Member
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    Well, the OC line DOES have that bead filter which is intriguing...

    Any pump recommendations? I'm not sure the maxijet will pull that off.

    -
    S
     
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