Custom OTS filter for nano tank - The Planted Tank Forum

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post #1 of 33 (permalink) Old 04-27-2013, 02:27 AM Thread Starter
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Custom OTS filter for nano tank

I purchased a DBP 3.2 gal "beta tank" that came with a glass top and 4 glass dividers. These unused glass pieces are or will be serving other functions. One divider is currently being used to mount a clamp on LED light fixture that was designed for rimless tanks. The rest of the glass will be cut and siliconed into a clear baffled box that will be powered by a Rio Plus pump and fed by 9mm glass lily pipes. Pics to follow.

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post #2 of 33 (permalink) Old 04-27-2013, 06:09 PM
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Your concept sounds pretty dang awesome. Looking forward to seeing it develop!

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post #3 of 33 (permalink) Old 04-27-2013, 10:30 PM Thread Starter
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Custom OTS filter for nano tank

Most people do DIY projects to save money, this project will probably cost 2-3X what a normal HOB filter would cost but I now have all this extra glass and a need to build something.

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post #4 of 33 (permalink) Old 05-14-2013, 10:29 PM Thread Starter
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Custom OTS filter for nano tank

Almost all the components for the filter are in hand. Glass from the dividers and lid have been cut and sanded to size. Joint edges have been taped off and pieces taped together. Purchased the Rio+ 90 pump from LFS and received the 9mm lily pipe set from China (Fischer Chemical). Leftover Ehiem 9mm tubing used to connect output pipe to pump and extend intake pipe to back of filter. Will be using a block of foam as filter media. Will also mount a small LED pennant lamp to the back of the filter box and possibly grow something emergent over the filter media. Maybe Bacopa. Open to suggestions.
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post #5 of 33 (permalink) Old 05-18-2013, 05:33 PM Thread Starter
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Custom OTS filter for nano tank

Not a filter just yet, more like a recirculation sump. Slapped it together, had to resolve a small leak in the seal and install a valve on the powerhead to throttle the flow but it is now creating a gentle current. Last step is to place a foam block between the intake pipe and the powerhead to act as filter media.

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post #6 of 33 (permalink) Old 05-19-2013, 03:23 AM
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That's pretty cool! I hate the look of a filter in the tank.
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post #7 of 33 (permalink) Old 05-24-2013, 09:09 AM Thread Starter
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Custom OTS filter for nano tank

Now it's officially a filter. Trimmed Fluval foam blocks and placed them between the intake pipe and the powerhead.



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post #8 of 33 (permalink) Old 05-24-2013, 09:30 AM
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very nice, did you have any issue with the intake priming ?
ps what dose "ots" stand for ?
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post #9 of 33 (permalink) Old 05-24-2013, 11:41 AM
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OTS=on the side?


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post #10 of 33 (permalink) Old 05-24-2013, 08:13 PM
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so what happens if the power goes out? wont the sump keep filling?
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post #11 of 33 (permalink) Old 05-24-2013, 09:55 PM
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Is the intake to the filter a siphon? You're going to run into an issue sooner or later, the flow is going to be variable and you'll either overflow the sump or drain it.
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post #12 of 33 (permalink) Old 05-24-2013, 10:29 PM Thread Starter
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Custom OTS filter for nano tank

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Originally Posted by scotty b View Post
very nice, did you have any issue with the intake priming ?
ps what dose "ots" stand for ?
Scotty: the intake siphon didn't have any problems, just submerged the pipe in the tank, finger over the open end and placed end into filter box and yes, "OTS" is on the side.

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post #13 of 33 (permalink) Old 05-24-2013, 10:38 PM Thread Starter
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Custom OTS filter for nano tank

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Originally Posted by aesthetics808 View Post
so what happens if the power goes out? wont the sump keep filling?
Aesthetics808: because the output is greater than the intake, when operating, the filter box level is about 2" lower than the tank. When I shut down the pump, the levels equalize so there is not an overflow problem. The filter box volume is just less than a liter so if the siphon is clogged and the filter box is pumped dry, the water level in the tank does not exceed the total tank volume. It all works out.

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post #14 of 33 (permalink) Old 05-24-2013, 11:04 PM Thread Starter
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Custom OTS filter for nano tank

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Originally Posted by IWANNAGOFAST View Post
Is the intake to the filter a siphon? You're going to run into an issue sooner or later, the flow is going to be variable and you'll either overflow the sump or drain it.
Iwannagofast: the flow is controllable because I installed a valve (came with the Rio + 90 powerhead) in the output side. The filter box side should never overflow because the water level is lower than the tank side when operating. When the pump is turned off, the filter box and tank will seek equilibrium and both containers which are the same height will have equal water levels. The intake pipe end is about 1" below the filter box water level when the filter pump is running. If the water level in the box drops more than that, the intake siphon is broken and the filter will drain down to the powerhead opening. Because the output pipe is still maintaining "siphon" because it is below the tank level, it will continue to run but not "dry". The volume of the filter box when operating in less than 1 liter and will not exceed the total volume of the tank. I know that this a long drawn out explanation but its a good feedback system that I put alot of forethought into when I put it together. Thanks for the concern though, my gf would be so pissed if I got her books wet! (Tank is on a bookshelf)

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post #15 of 33 (permalink) Old 05-25-2013, 01:36 PM
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Ah very cool that you have it all thought out. It does look good!
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