Vase's 720 litre journal

Vase

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Well I could have one Tetratec at each end and my Eheim 2128 in the middle. Any thoughts?
 

Dave Spencer

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TDI-line said:
I think as long as you have a decent filter each end you will be ok.

I pretty much agree with this. Having 100l/h of filtration at one end may not be as effective as having 300l/h at each end, in terms of movement of nutrients around the tank.

Dave.
 

Jeremy

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28 Dec 2007
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Don't mix up flow with filtration, the two are two different things.

You cannot over filter a tank but you can have too much flow for some plants.

Having said that, I would have no problems with ten times turnover in any planted tank.

Sks,

Why go for four 2217s?

That means four plugs and eight pipes, and 2217s don't even prime.

Check the wattage as well, 4 x any external may cost you dear in electricity

I did a review of external filters and the Tetratec was one of the best. Loads of media, strong, but controllable flow and it primes in seconds.
 
S

sks

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Jeremy said:
Don't mix up flow with filtration, the two are two different things.

You cannot over filter a tank but you can have too much flow for some plants.

Having said that, I would have no problems with ten times turnover in any planted tank.

Sks,

Why go for four 2217s?

That means four plugs and eight pipes, and 2217s don't even prime.

Check the wattage as well, 4 x any external may cost you dear in electricity

I did a review of external filters and the Tetratec was one of the best. Loads of media, strong, but controllable flow and it primes in seconds.

Eheim have complicated their range somewhat. The classics will last you a long time. Just a few weeks ago I broke the handle on my professionel 2 because I stored it dried and didn't realise to wet the O rings inside the double tap connector which made turning incredibly hard (and this is my fault by the way).

I just like a completely void filter chamber with the shutoff taps out of the way.

Priming is not an issue for me, and no you don't need to get a mouthful of tank water if you know what you are doing.

The 2080 I would hazard a guess is 38 watts. The 2217s are 20 watts each. I will be using 3 or 4 2217s on my new 6' and distribute their flows accordingly.

Also most modern media these days have incredibly amounts of surface area so you don't need to have lots of media to do a lot of work, but I do accept the point of having a lot of filtration to deal with ammonia immediately and the only way to do this is to have vigorous water flow and fast filtration. But you do have to take into account the reaction time of the bacteria etc . . .

Vase,
Another suggestion is a wet/dry sump setup using a rotating spray bar and DLS (probably 2 towers which you have to seal). You could make it out of glass and have a strong 3000 - 4000 l/h return pump and that will give you more than enough for what you need. But you need to know what you are doing to implement something of this order requires a lot of experience. You would also need to either drill a hole in your tank and put in a barrier or use a syphon box. If you lived near me I could help you build something like this since I have such a system running for over 15 years on my fish only.
 

Vase

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Dave Spencer said:
TDI-line said:
I think as long as you have a decent filter each end you will be ok.

I pretty much agree with this. Having 100l/h of filtration at one end may not be as effective as having 300l/h at each end, in terms of movement of nutrients around the tank.

Dave.

I know I shouldnt go by flow etc as its going to be reduced a fair bit but going by the stats each tetratec would give me 1200lph at each end of the tank and then I'd have another 1000 odd lph in the middle with the Eheim. I'm happy to buy two 2080's but I'll save a fortune if the tetratecs will do a good job.
 

Jeremy

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You don't want a wet dry sump dude.

Another name for trickle filters is degassing towers.

Goodbye CO2.

If you opt for a sump, go for the freshwater version of the Ecosystem, with plants growing in the sump.

Underworld distribute freshwater Ecosystems in the UK.

I wouldn't even have wet/dry on marines.

It is an out of date method that produces nitrate.
 

Vase

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I'm going to stick with externals as I want to keep things fairly simple this time round. But thanks for the suggestions ;)

I'm torn between two tetratecs and two 2080's. I'd pretty much decided on the eheims but if the tetratecs will do a good job I'll go for those and save myself a fortune :D
 

TDI-line

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Are you getting the cabinet made first?

Well worth checking the size of those 2080's under your unit, 567x330x330, then add on your hoses etc.
 

Vase

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Yeah, cabinets going to be 30" high so plenty of room for any external. Just need to decide which ones :?
 

nry

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zooplus.co.uk did my EX600 for £45 delivered, way cheaper than UK - might be worth a look for the larger versions, they do other brands aswell, all come with a UK plug adapter too.
 

Vase

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Cheers mate, never thought to look on there. I often use Zooplus for treats for my dog :D
 
S

sks

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Jeremy said:
You don't want a wet dry sump dude.

Another name for trickle filters is degassing towers.

Goodbye CO2.

If you opt for a sump, go for the freshwater version of the Ecosystem, with plants growing in the sump.

Underworld distribute freshwater Ecosystems in the UK.

I wouldn't even have wet/dry on marines.

It is an out of date method that produces nitrate.

Note I stated to seal the tower.

Actually sumps are very good if used correctly:

1) you get constant water level in your main tank (assuming of course the rate of output of the return pump is constant)

2) unlike canister filters mechanical filtration is neatly segregated (depends on your implementation), which means that as it gets clogged you could change it directly without having to the awkwardness of turning off and decoupling shut off taps and opening and the closing the canister

Here is an image of my working syphon box:

IMG_0264.jpg


the thing is that you can calculate water flow by the height of the water over the barrier. The dirt building up on the polymer wool is 2 days worth. You have to bare in mind that I keep large synodontis catfish and barbs, so they're messy.

3) the bio tower is maintenance free. It is never to be touched at all. I've not touched my bio tower since the day it was put in place

4) you can now put a heater in the sump and any other things that take your fancy, you could also run your CO2 reactor on your sump knowing that the water will be returned to the tank

5) adding extra reactors and chemical filtration is a breeze

6) implementation of water change and water top up is also a breeze . .

drawbacks:

1) large space required, best suited to good cabinets with total open void space
2) you could have water running about if you DON'T know what you are doing - and most don't unfortunately
3) operation and trouble shooting is also rather subtle to understand for most hobbyists

wet/dry towers fell out of favour with the reef community because they were just nitrate factories, what they do now is to skim the water before hitting the ammonia tower. We don't care about nitrate factories :idea: since our plants want the nitrate (and BGA is horrible stuff to have).
 

Jeremy

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Sks,

If you seal your tower how does oxygen get in?

Also, when you so conveniently remove dirty mechanical media from a sump, all the gunk gets shot back into the main tank.

As we are on the subject of external freshwater filtering methods, a bead filter is a good option for large tanks.

Overflow boxes, homemade or otherwise are noisy and problematic. If you ever go for a sump, drill the tank and install a top and bottom scavenging weir.

No doubt sks will put me right.
 
S

sks

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Jeremy said:
Sks,

If you seal your tower how does oxygen get in?

Also, when you so conveniently remove dirty mechanical media from a sump, all the gunk gets shot back into the main tank.

As we are on the subject of external freshwater filtering methods, a bead filter is a good option for large tanks.

Overflow boxes, homemade or otherwise are noisy and problematic. If you ever go for a sump, drill the tank and install a top and bottom scavenging weir.

No doubt sks will put me right.

1) oxygen does not get in. The bio media would effectively function as if it were immersed. I personally, over a decade ago, was told NOT to use trickle filters for a planted tank. When I saw on the internet some hobbyists using them quite effectively I changed my mind. But the idea is to seal the tower, otherwise you would gas away the CO2.
2) this brings me to the point about it being a nitrate factory: what do you think closed canister filters are? They are also nitrate factories. We don't have the aid of skimming to remove organic loads before they are broken down (I do use a freshwater protein skimmer, but that would drive out CO2 in a planted tank). A trickle arrangement would be a very effective nitrate factory since you can have a LOT of water flow through it. But this leaves us the question if having too strong a biological filter is bad since you rob the plants of their own ability to get rid of ammonia.
3) hence from above 2 points such a wet/dry setup would only bring convenience as an advantage. You could submerge the media, but water level in sump is variable, which is why you have it out of the water. Also having the media out of the water allows for a more uniform flow (if you know what I mean). Using a rotating spray bar with DLS you can exploit the "chimney" effect. (but that's another story for another day), and have uniform wetting of the media.
4) overflow boxes are not noisy and problematic. They are noisy and problematic if you don't make them right (gurgling effects, water falling too high etc . . . ). They are noisy and problematic if you DON'T know what you are doing - and most don't.
5) the dirt in the sump can be serviced with a filter attached to it, and/or having mechanical barriers etc. . . . there are a loads of other solutions. (Also, if you think about it, would any self respecting reef keeper let his super expensive return pump suck up detritus to push back to main tank.) This means that the bio media is maintenance free. I hate having to open my canisters and cleaning out the bio media in tank water and putting it all back again (and replacing the mechanical media as well)

Sump set ups are here to stay, and will always have applications. They give a lot of flexibility if you need to do a lot of things (which is why reef keepers use them). One of the drawbacks is high evaporation and salt creep, but that can be fixed if you know how to design a sump.
 

ceg4048

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Hi,
A couple of points apart from the advantage/disadvantage of trickle filters - Having strong biological filtration is never, ever a bad thing. Ammonia uptake by plants, especially in a high light tank is not a prerequisite and should never be considered as "robbing" the plants of some vital function. Further, in the "ideal" scenario, the biological filters do all the ammonia conversion and the plants simply use the resultant nitrate. Since we are dosing relatively high concentrations of KNO3, ammonia availability is neither a desirable condition nor is it necessarily relevant as far as plant uptake. The presence of ammonia is heavily correlated to Algal proliferation and should be minimized as much as possible. This is why bigger filters filled with huge surface area biomedia should be a primary goal, especially in a big tank.

Secondly, most of what we consider "the good bacteria" thrive within an oxygen rich environment. These are referred to as aerobic bacteria. The bacteria which proliferate in oxygen poor environments are "anaerobic" bacteria and normally do bad things in our tanks. There is a symbiotic relationship therefore between the plants and the "good" bacteria in that oxygen production and ejection into the water column by plants during the photoperiod facilitates ammonia reduction by those bacteria. Ammonia reduction is a deterrent to the development of the algae which are a constant threat to the plants.

Cheers,
 
S

sks

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ceg4048 said:
Hi,
A couple of points apart from the advantage/disadvantage of trickle filters - Having strong biological filtration is never, ever a bad thing. Ammonia uptake by plants, especially in a high light tank is not a prerequisite and should never be considered as "robbing" the plants of some vital function. Further, in the "ideal" scenario, the biological filters do all the ammonia conversion and the plants simply use the resultant nitrate. Since we are dosing relatively high concentrations of KNO3, ammonia availability is neither a desirable condition nor is it necessarily relevant as far as plant uptake. The presence of ammonia is heavily correlated to Algal proliferation and should be minimized as much as possible. This is why bigger filters filled with huge surface area biomedia should be a primary goal, especially in a big tank.

Secondly, most of what we consider "the good bacteria" thrive within an oxygen rich environment. These are referred to as aerobic bacteria. The bacteria which proliferate in oxygen poor environments are "anaerobic" bacteria and normally do bad things in our tanks. There is a symbiotic relationship therefore between the plants and the "good" bacteria in that oxygen production and ejection into the water column by plants during the photoperiod facilitates ammonia reduction by those bacteria. Ammonia reduction is a deterrent to the development of the algae which are a constant threat to the plants.

Cheers,

Well in that case, Clive, that's covered. :D :idea:

So, you are saying, to the effect (and correct me if I'm wrong), even if we are only using 10% of our biological filtering capacity of 4 large canister filters because the media it contains is SO high in surface area (Eheim Efisubstrat comes to mind), we have the added bonus of a lot of flow and mixing as well, and a LOT of capacity to spare (and grow more good bacteria should the need/load requires), and that can only be a good thing?

My way of looking at it is to provide sufficiently excessive biological filtration and let the cheap wave making powerheads do the rest. You now have the best of both worlds and use less expense. In the old days people were told not to run their bio towers with too much water flow since you could wash off the bacteria. I'm sure that there is some kind of relationship between contact time and ammonia conversion.
 

ceg4048

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sks said:
So, you are saying, to the effect (and correct me if I'm wrong), even if we are only using 10% of our biological filtering capacity of 4 large canister filters because the media it contains is SO high in surface area (Eheim Efisubstrat comes to mind), we have the added bonus of a lot of flow and mixing as well, and a LOT of capacity to spare (and grow more good bacteria should the need/load requires), and that can only be a good thing?

Yep, the more surface area that comes into contact with the water the higher the baseline nitrifying bacteria population. Also, since they increase their population geometrically, when the need does arise such as increased fish load or overfeeding or any potential ammonia spike the population increase is more dramatic and quicker than if you had lesser capacity. The spike is therefore attenuated better with higher capacity since your baseline population would be higher to begin with. I guess a shock absorber comes to mind as an analogy.:rolleyes:

sks said:
My way of looking at it is to provide sufficiently excessive biological filtration and let the cheap wave making powerheads do the rest. You now have the best of both worlds and use less expense. In the old days people were told not to run their bio towers with too much water flow since you could wash off the bacteria. I'm sure that there is some kind of relationship between contact time and ammonia conversion.

Well, it might be more illuminating to separate the concepts of flow and filtration. Flow delivers the nutrients to the surface of the plants and sweeps the ammonia away. Many people overlook the fact that at the surface of the plant leaf there is a thin boundary layer of zero velocity flow along the leaf surface. This occurs simply due to friction. As the plant absorbs the nutrients/CO2 in this thin boundary layer, in a low flow environment it then has to depend more on osmotic forces to have new nutrients delivered across the boundary layer. Higher ambient flow facilitates a non-zero boundary layer velocity, in effect, force feeding the leaf constantly with new supply of nutrients/CO2, and taking away any organic waste.

In a high capacity/high surface area filtration the importance of contact time is mitigated by the fact that the inlet water comes into contact with more bacteria bodies, so that although the contact time with each body is lower due to flow rate, more bodies can act upon the remaining ammonia as it passes through the gauntlet. I believe that some of the advantage of a high flow filter would be wasted if there is not high surface area biomedia inside to take advantage of the space.

High flow and high capacity therefore go hand in hand so that the powerhead solution is much less effective since it solves only half the puzzle (an important half nonetheless.) ;)

Cheers,
 

Vase

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Not yet mate :rolleyes: Its laying on the dining room floor empty at the moment while I decorate the dining room. I havent actually bought any equipment yet but thats related to lack of funds at the moment.

I'll keep you posted :D
 

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