Trickle Filters - Page 2 - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #16 of 77 (permalink) Old 04-19-2009, 09:23 PM
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Actually, most reef tanks today don't use trickle filters, because they're nitrate traps. For SW hobbyists now, most Biological filtration is accomplished by the use of Live Rock and Deep Sand Beds (DSBs), as well as by some of the fauna in the tank itself.

I've just converted my 125g from Salty to the Freshwater side (Medium-planted low-tech), and am using my sump with a DIY wet/dry trickle filter for additional filtration. In addition, I've used the refugium chamber as a plant refuge, for out-cuttings and nitrate loving plants. So far the tank's doing well. If you'd like a drawing of how mine is set up, let me know and I'll come up with one.

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post #17 of 77 (permalink) Old 04-19-2009, 09:57 PM
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I've had a trickle filter set up on a planted tank for well over 10 years. Yes, you do need to seal it up to minimize CO2 loss. Yes, you can use the tower with bio-balls or whatever media you like because that is your biological filter. I must say they make AWESOME biological filters too. I've never had to clean that part of the filter. My filter has a weir in it which contains polyester floss which I replace periodically. I have a huge external DIY CO2 reactor run by a mag 3 (was run by a Quiet One 2200 previously). The overflow and the filter are covered. The tank has glass covers on top too. So yes, you have to take measures to minimize CO2 loss. Covering these items does not starve the bio filter or fish for O2 based on observing this set up for many years. I think there are many advantages to a wet/dry/sump filter:minimal items in tank such as heater, reactors, ect. If there is a power outage you can take water from your sump and put it back in the tank to keep your bio-filter alive-the bio filter media requires almost no maintenence (I have a filter pad in the overflow that I replace weekly with a clean one)-it's just a good set up IMO.


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post #18 of 77 (permalink) Old 04-19-2009, 10:06 PM Thread Starter
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Conversion

Well no broken glass and no dead bodies. The box is cleared.


Passages were narrow and angles just crowded the tank. The media discharge was small so it had to go.



I decided to use an Olfo snap off waperpaper razor as the narrow blade is flexible to cut the sealant.



No sweat yet but first blood on the project as my ugly finger was nicked picking debris outta the tank. Clean up wash and then on to deciding on panel divider heights and placement. Stage one was acquiring the stuff so I believe now that I'm actually touching it this begins stage 2.

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2012 update adding table top pleco pans & a 90g (Nutz)
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post #19 of 77 (permalink) Old 04-20-2009, 07:14 PM
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I told you I didn't know about these filters. LOL But I am interested to see this develop.
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post #20 of 77 (permalink) Old 04-21-2009, 12:58 AM
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That is an odd looking trickle filter. Is it made of glass? It appears that you are gutting it. What do you have planned. Are you going to have a bio media chamber?


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post #21 of 77 (permalink) Old 04-21-2009, 01:21 AM Thread Starter
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Yes its glass and an odd size, not tank standard. 32L x 20H x 12W. I'm still reading what I can find which isn't much. If I reinstall the tower it will be to the end of the tank not the center wall that was a mess in my mind. but leaning towards chambers running end to end. Socks on the inlets followed by some media boxes and an open chamber before the return. At over 30" with the tower removed there's some good space to work with. So if that's done then back to sump w/o the trickle.

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post #22 of 77 (permalink) Old 04-21-2009, 05:07 PM Thread Starter
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I don't seem to find a written answer searching the web. I've decided to go sump not trickle filter using socks on the intake. How do you determine optimum divider height? Enough sump needs to be left empty to accommodate main tank draining with return pump failure or shut down I do understand that. How much fall between chambers is my question mark right now and does it really matter?

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RubberSideDownOnTheLanding,
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2012 update adding table top pleco pans & a 90g (Nutz)
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post #23 of 77 (permalink) Old 04-21-2009, 05:51 PM Thread Starter
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boxes and dividers

Found some rubbermaid boxes that will make great media trays. 1 Tall stack or two shorter stacks that is now the question Shakespeare. Taller the stack created the longer fall for water and more splash going to the end of the sump. Level at the return end will be 1/3 tank height give or take.



boxes are 11x7x4 deep


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If at first you don't succeed,,, keep kicking it
RubberSideDownOnTheLanding,
2-75g planted, 5-55g planted, 5-20g planted, 110g w/30g sump, 8-10g, Refugium, doghouse/newbie
2012 update adding table top pleco pans & a 90g (Nutz)

Last edited by wkndracer; 04-21-2009 at 07:50 PM. Reason: change pictures
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post #24 of 77 (permalink) Old 04-21-2009, 06:30 PM
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What kinds of media you want to run in the baskets? If you have an old light you can put it over those baskets and use to to keep plants, moss, etc (watch out for algae though) on top of a bio ball type bacteria growing media in some baskets. I'd run shorter basket stacks and keep the splashing down. Do you have a general outline of compartments for the sump? Anything you can post on here? I'm amazed how clean the sump looks with all the carving you did. Must have scraped a good long while?

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post #25 of 77 (permalink) Old 04-21-2009, 07:27 PM Thread Starter
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As far as posting a drawing or anything I'm still at the stare at it,,, move the baskets and scratch the head,,, stare at it again stage.
Media,
The theory here of you have it, use it. First basket even with the socks thinking coarse foam, second Eheim Ehfimech (cylinder type), third Eheim Ehfisubstrat Pro (ball type), forth would be fine floss or place the floss in the upper 1/2 of the third box leaving the forth free for whatever. OR going 6 baskets increase the mechanical to two each of the Eheim materials.
If going with two / three basket stacks at a lower overall level for the dividers the overflow would swamp back over the basket if the power failed and restored when we weren't home was a thought I had looking at.

My other tanks have Pro3e, and Pro II canisters on them so I have extra materials on hand.
Pumps I'm looking at are 950 to 1325 gph

and yeah, a lot of scraping, there was stuff glued all over that tank

Edited my last pic post after cutting my first piece of glass and setting between the basket stacks.

The Fraternity of Dirt
If at first you don't succeed,,, keep kicking it
RubberSideDownOnTheLanding,
2-75g planted, 5-55g planted, 5-20g planted, 110g w/30g sump, 8-10g, Refugium, doghouse/newbie
2012 update adding table top pleco pans & a 90g (Nutz)
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post #26 of 77 (permalink) Old 04-22-2009, 01:50 AM
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This is just my take on it based on running one for a long time on a FW planted tank:have a trickle section above the water line in the sump filled with a plastic media eg. bio balls ect. If you want to run it through a sock first that's great too or you can have debris filter in the over-flow section in the tank. Construct a weir or channel system that you can put polyester batting and bags filled with whatever floats your boat-purigen, carbon ect. The idea is that you have a nitrifying bacteria colony on the media that can, when parts of it dies,( as it surely will) it will slough off the media and be collected in the polyester batting/floss ect. You will NEVER have to clean this part of the filter. You can add fish and not worry about ammonia and nitrite spikes. You WILL have to make this set up somewhat air tight anyway if you are going to use CO2 so why not have the trickle section? IMO if you leave that out you will be foregoing one the best things about it. Now, I know that the reefers don't use trickle sections anymore because they are nitrate FACTORIES which is bad for reef tanks but not for FW planted tanks.


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post #27 of 77 (permalink) Old 04-23-2009, 10:18 PM Thread Starter
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After much head scratching (and not wanting to end up bald) I made a decision. Going forward the trickle is back in the filter and the socks are out. Although the tray is much smaller. 8" at the end of the tank.
I have a finish blade on my table saw that does a decent job on plastic so I cut the drip plate.



Ordered glass today because none of what I removed is big enough to recut for the new panels. There will be three dividers counting the trickle filter chamber. The tape is the flooded area of the design up to the dam.



I fully expect the tank drainage to overflow this smaller drip tray. So to eliminate all the splash from that drop I'll increase the basket height of the first stack up the the drip tray and floss fill it if needed. The water will wick through the floss rather than drip.



Waiting on the glass all I can do now is put the tower part back in. This stuff comes apart easier than it goes in LOL.



After researching a couple of days decided on a Little Giant 4-MDQ-SC it should deliver about 640gph at the end of the returns. Claims are the new pumps are real quiet. Like the fact there's no shaft seals on a mag drive.

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If at first you don't succeed,,, keep kicking it
RubberSideDownOnTheLanding,
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2012 update adding table top pleco pans & a 90g (Nutz)
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post #28 of 77 (permalink) Old 04-23-2009, 10:42 PM
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Looking good!! I think this is going to work out really well for you. The Little Giant pumps are great. I used one on a reef tank to replace a Gen-X that sounded like a 4 cycle boat motor. The LG was much more quiet, but I think it was an MD, not MDQ model. Is the Q for "quiet"? I'd still suggest you find some way to soft mount that pump though to prevent your cabinet from humming. I was able to find some reinforced rubber soft mounts made for an RC airplane engine that helped reduce vibration noise significantly. Are you planning to use hard line plumbing to the main tank? Where is the overflow and return in the main tank?

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post #29 of 77 (permalink) Old 04-23-2009, 11:02 PM Thread Starter
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current Q&A

The tank is drilled in both rear corners behind the weirs. I was planning on using 'flexiPVC' spa piping to eliminate angle fittings but am now looking into SharkBite PEX tubing and barb fittings. This stuff looks to be the next 'best thing since sliced bread'. It is able to be broken down and refitted without cutting or glue, gas and liquid rated to 200psi. Comes in black, red, natural and textured colors up to 1" dia.! I may never want to close the cabinet doors!! Putting together a parts list now that I've settled on a pump for the most part. (haven't ordered one yet) Depends on what wholesale pricing is on the stuff. CASH ACME products.

I have 1/8" - 1/4" rubber gasket material in sheets, very similar rubber to tire tubes so I can make dampers thanks for the tip. Still have to decide on CO2 but I think I'll stay at 2wpg on the start up so I can skip it and dose excel for awhile. Gotta get another Aqua UV unit too. This used cheap tank is adding up.

The Fraternity of Dirt
If at first you don't succeed,,, keep kicking it
RubberSideDownOnTheLanding,
2-75g planted, 5-55g planted, 5-20g planted, 110g w/30g sump, 8-10g, Refugium, doghouse/newbie
2012 update adding table top pleco pans & a 90g (Nutz)
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post #30 of 77 (permalink) Old 04-23-2009, 11:34 PM
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PEX seems like good stuff. I bought a 100' roll of 1/2" today for another project. I opted for compression fittings rather than buy the crimper. I've gotten as far as hooking it up to a garden hose to check the compression fittings for leaks, and am pretty impressed.

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Ain't it the truth?

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