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Old 03-25-2006, 10:14 PM   #1 (permalink)
 
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Default Mechanical filtration for Marineland bio-wheel?

Hello,

Just recently discovered I'm not supposed to be running carbon in my planted tank. Perhaps now I can finally take care of my algae problems. Anyway, any recommendations on media for mechanical filtration? Is there something for another filter I could purchase that would work well with my marineland? I don't remember the model of my filter, but it takes rite size C cartridges. For now I have cut off the inner plastic part and emptied out the carbon, but it seems really unstable. I need some better options.

I was thinking about taking a few of the pads from my Rena xp3 I use in another tank, and cutting them enough to fit them into the inside of the filter, though I have a problem with the biowheel when I keep too much media in there. The water will exit from the overflow and not the bio-wheel, which will just stand still without motion of any kind.

Also, is having the bio-wheel on there alright? I've heard some say before that they discard the bio-wheel as it causes even more turbulance.

Thanks!
Fernando
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Old 03-26-2006, 06:55 AM   #2 (permalink)
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I removed the biowheels from my penguin 350 because of surface agitation.

I also make a slit down the side of the rite size C cartridge and shake all the carbon out, and then put the whole thing in the filter slot.

Seems to be working good for me.
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Old 03-26-2006, 02:45 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Ditto. I've also found that ScotchBrite pads (the green ones) work well as a fine mechanical filter, but they should be cleaned often as they clog easily.
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Old 03-26-2006, 02:47 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Get a canister. It will be better in the long run, I guarantee it. Pazuzu? Is that reference to the demon of Christian mythology?
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Old 03-26-2006, 09:58 PM   #5 (permalink)
 
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Yeah...that's what I just did...I cut into the plastic and made a giant mess to get the carbon out. I just wish there was something easier, like maybe one of those cartridges where you fill the media in yourself. Perhaps that's what Dewmazz was referring to.

And is it okay to take off the biowheel? The only reason why I ask is because when I used to keep a lot of media in there once, the biowheel stopped running as all the water was exiting through the overflow part and not through the biowheel. Anyway, when I did a test on my water, my nitrites were up to .5ppm... and this tank had been set up and properly cycled for months already! I cleaned out the filter so water made it into the main part of the filter and push through the biowheel. By the next day the nitrites were back to 0.

Just curious. Perhaps it was something else that caused that. I don't know. I would just feel really daring by taking off my biowheel. Perhaps the bacteria will grow elsewhere without it? Should I give it another shot and see?

Thanks!
Fernando


And yeah... Pzuzu is a reference to the demon...though I much prefer this spelling. I've used it as my nickname online for any chatroom, forum, etc. I've ever been a part of since I was a curious teenager. Just kinda stuck. Some of my friends even call me by Pzuzu. Heh... anyway...
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Old 03-26-2006, 10:50 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Actually, I was just referring to the green scrubbing pads you use for washing dishes . I have a small Bio-Wheel on my 2 gallon eclipse explorer, and I'm fine with or without it.

Nitrobacter and Nitrosomonas (the good ammonia-eating-nitrate-expelling bacteria) will culture in the gravel and in the mechanical media too. The bio-wheel provides an ideal environment to culture these bacteria because they utilize a lot of oxygen, and as the wheel spins, the bacteria is constantly exposed to the air. Be sure to keep the axles free of debris with good waterflow to keep it spinning.

And a Nitrate of .5 ppm is fine. 10 - 20 is okay for plants. I like using the biowheel because it gives my plants a "choice" between ammonia, nitrite, and nitrate and it lessens the stress on my fish.

Last edited by Dewmazz; 03-26-2006 at 10:59 PM..
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Old 03-27-2006, 04:59 AM   #7 (permalink)
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You can buy a "Bio-Basket" direct from Marineland for $11.

Now...who says the chemical filtration provided by the carbon is bad for plants?

One thing to remember about the carbon...
It's only usefull for 1-2 weeks as a chemical filter before it goes away.

perhaps another option that might work if you don't want the chemical filtration would be to use a filter sponge from an AC400 filter.

Also, check the DIY section for filtration & you may come up with something there as well.


PEACE!

-TF
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Old 03-27-2006, 08:33 AM   #8 (permalink)
 
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Very good point, tetrafreak. So I'll just let a carbon cartridge sit in there for two weeks, take it out, clean off the debris, put it back in. But I would still like some more mechanical filtration in there...part of me feels like that blue pad just isn't enough. I'll check out the sponge from AC400 filter.

Thanks for the help...
Fernando
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Old 03-27-2006, 07:16 PM   #9 (permalink)
 
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Good discussion, espec. re charcoal. My limited experience shows that charcoal media gets every thing out of the water incl traces & ferts. Not what you want. I've a question for canister users. Is there a spray bar that can be adapted to a Marineland Magnum 350 to minimize surface agitation, or is it strictly DIY? Also has any one else used the Lee's mini-balls in a 350 as media with the foam cover as a pre-filter?
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Old 03-28-2006, 06:18 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pzuzu

And yeah... Pzuzu is a reference to the demon...though I much prefer this spelling. I've used it as my nickname online for any chatroom, forum, etc. I've ever been a part of since I was a curious teenager. Just kinda stuck. Some of my friends even call me by Pzuzu. Heh... anyway...

Lol, I sometimes go by Samael myself. Christian mythology is fascinating, I don't know why more people aren't into it.
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