DIY canister - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 01-08-2013, 03:09 AM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
Join Date: May 2012
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DIY canister

I know the thread came around a couple time but nobody actually show what they did or tried. Lots of people say that it is a disaster waiting to happen or that it will leak.

I did build one a couple months ago and no flooding of my floor yet. I first build this thing because my fluval 304 died and that I wanted to try it as it seemed possible. It is far from beeing pretty but it work real good for what I use it for. I got to admit that I did not save that much money but still managed to save some bucks over all. I used a sicce syncra 1.5 pump, 4" pvc fitting and my old fluval pipe. Inside of it bot inlet and outlet are L shaped and water flow from bottom to top. No trays in it and it is fillet with ceramic ring in a mesh mag and floss. The only thing I don't like about it is that it's missing some ball valve before and after the union but I realized it to late and I did not have enought pvc left make it. It is a bit of a PITA for cleaning but I only have to raise it to unfill it and then unplug it. The first pic is only to show the inlet and outlet in the tank.

I hope this will give some people ideas and prove others that it is possible to do it.
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Last edited by jimbocurtice; 01-08-2013 at 03:21 AM. Reason: infos missing
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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 01-08-2013, 04:08 AM
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In the way you did it, you're using big PVC with caps designed to hold pressure. Pressure is the whole problem. Most people want to do it with a bucket, or something, which won't have the presure and the problem of sealing holes, etcs. Using PVC the way you did, obviously yours can hold the pressure, and it's driven by an outside pump.

First, great job on doing one the right way and showing it can be done.

With that said, that big caps and PVC pieces aren't cheap, then the pump, tubing, all the quick connects, if you would have added ball valves for the disconnects, etc, then media, you are way over cost on what a better canister filter with media would have cost you, probably by far, but none the less, good job on showing on how to do it right.

Now if you work in plumbing and have all kinds of pieces like this left over after a month of work, then sure, it's a more feasible project for sure. That's a big cost of this project, especially in Canada at least.

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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 01-11-2013, 06:18 AM
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Thats really neat for a diy canister. That is the first time I have seen anything like that done before. However I gotta say it probably would have been cheaper to do a sump, esp. If you use a second hand tank, or get one through petcos $1 gallon sale. Definite applauds to you though. It is a interesting idea.

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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 02-02-2013, 08:06 PM
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The big advantage of this DIY design over the factory designs, if I see it right, is that this one puts the media on the pressure side of the pump and the factory units put the media on the suction side. That alone makes the DIY vastly superior even if it doesn't save much money. I'd really like to see a diagram of how it's laid out.

I'm planning to try an external filter myself on our next tank. So thanks for posting this. It's encouraging to see people thinking for themselves rather than just thumbing through a catalog.
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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 02-02-2013, 09:16 PM
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Originally Posted by SouthernGorilla View Post
The big advantage of this DIY design over the factory designs, if I see it right, is that this one puts the media on the pressure side of the pump and the factory units put the media on the suction side. That alone makes the DIY vastly superior even if it doesn't save much money.
Why would this make it superior?

There is a rather large advantage to putting the media on the suction side - if something hard goes into the intake, it will be trapped in the media instead of potentially damaging the impeller.
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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 02-06-2013, 09:16 PM
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Have to agree with DarkCobra. You want filter media before your pump, just like a sump would have.
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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 02-13-2013, 06:28 PM
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Pretty cool. The main reason you don't see many people doing this is exactly what you found, to do it right, it's not exactly cost effective, especially since most canisters come with media, tubing, and all of that. The other reason you don't see many is they are trying to make a Nano canister out of things like tuperware or similar, or doing something really large wanting to use 5 gallon buckets. Things that are cheap and found around the house just aren't strong enough.
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