The Planted Tank Forum - Reply to Topic
Thread: Low tech filtration upgrade? Reply to Thread
Send Trackbacks to (Separate multiple URLs with spaces) :
Post Icons
You may choose an icon for your message from the following list:

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the The Planted Tank Forum forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:


Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.

  Additional Options
Miscellaneous Options

  Topic Review (Newest First)
02-27-2013 05:59 AM
Colorblizzle Thanks. The way you just put that actually did clarify it for me
02-24-2013 12:46 AM
Originally Posted by Colorblizzle View Post
I do like the aquaclears. I have 3 of them. Ill look into the gas exchange cuz I'm getting conflicting information. The plant guru and my LFS whom I trust fully told me I want no surface agitation whatsoever. So again ill look into it. And if I'm heavily enough planted and have a light bioload won't my plants provide more than enough oxygen for my fish?
to simplify gas exchange on a low tech tank for you.
when you have water agitation ie: HOB flow, anything in the air gets dissolved in the water including co2. Now water holds co2 at a constant at about 3ppm. it does not matter how much water agitation/flow there is, your water will only hold that much co2. The only way you can increase co2 is when you inject. then you need very little surface agitation to try to keep it at that level. Problem with no water movement is that things could build up on the surface ie: silt preventing gas exchange (co2/oxygen/etc.) and choke out your plants and fish
02-23-2013 10:28 PM
SouthernGorilla In a low-tech tank surface agitation is a good thing. The high-tech guys avoid it because they are trying to maintain an unnatural imbalance of gasses in their tank. A low-tech tank is just trying to maintain a natural balance. As plants use CO2 throughout the day you need to replenish it. The only low-tech source of CO2 is the air. Just like surface agitation provides oxygen for fish as they pull it from the water surface agitation provides CO2 for the plants as they pull it from the water.

As for the filter, I'm quite happy with the Tom's Mini Canister. It does a great job on a small tank. It is a pain to service. And it needs to be serviced pretty often due to its small size. But I doubt you can beat it for the price.

Having said that, I just ordered all the stuff to build a mattenfilter for our twenty-gallon. It's cheap, low maintenance, and seems to be quite effective from what I've seen. Mine cost more than the Tom's canister did. But that's because I'm using a powerhead to run it instead of an airlifter. It's still cheaper than a canister or HOB for a twenty-gallon.
01-30-2013 11:52 AM
Colorblizzle I do like the aquaclears. I have 3 of them. Ill look into the gas exchange cuz I'm getting conflicting information. The plant guru and my LFS whom I trust fully told me I want no surface agitation whatsoever. So again ill look into it. And if I'm heavily enough planted and have a light bioload won't my plants provide more than enough oxygen for my fish?
01-30-2013 07:54 AM
lochaber I've always been rather fond of the aquaclear HOBs, and thought they were a pretty good filter for the money spent. I've been out of the hobby for a bit, but I'm pretty sure I got at least a couple-few years continuous use out of mine without trouble, and with minimal maintenance. Are you using a prefilter? I've almost always used prefilters on my tanks when I've had a HOB or a cannister. Mostly for the welfare of the critters, but even a tiny snail can cause some damage knocking about the impeller chamber.

As to the gas exchange bit, that's only a real concern if you are injecting CO2 (I'm pretty sure one of the defining aspects of 'low-tech' is a lack of CO2 injection). Any sort of surface movement/turbulence/etc. will primarily work towards bringing the ratio of dissolved gasses in the water in line with what is present in the atmosphere. (something like ~79-80%N2, ~19-20%O2, ~1-2% of Argon, and then traces of everything else) So if you are injecting CO2 into your tank, then gas exchange will reduce it. on the other hand, it will also bring in O2, which is necessary both for your critters, and for the biofilter.
01-30-2013 03:00 AM
Colorblizzle I think I know what u mean
01-30-2013 02:40 AM
Rich Guano Angle? I'm confused by that.

How to explain this. The roots grow downward into the sand. The rhizome grows horizontal above the sand. I point the rhizome in the direction I want it to grow out noting that the growth end always has newer leaves.

I have not seen any pictures of Anubias in the wild, but I can not imagine they always grow trees.
01-27-2013 01:58 PM
Colorblizzle So what do you do then? Plant it on an angle?
01-27-2013 07:10 AM
Rich Guano Although it is very popular and attractive to anchor Anubias to the hardscape, it is not absolutely necessary. Anubias grow just fine planted in the substrate. I have them growing in sand and in gravel.

The key is that the rhizome must not be concealed by the substrate. Once it is covered it will soon allow leaves to fall away. But I am not sure if the plant dies or becomes dormant once all the leaves fall off. I will find out here shortly as I have one in such a state. I plan on uprooting the rhizome and giving the plant some time.
01-23-2013 02:12 AM
Colorblizzle The anubias I know I have to anchor to something. I have 2 pieces of driftwood in there now I just have to figure out how to the it to that while its in place. There's slate in the bottom of the driftwood to help it sink and that's covered by sand. The only ones I know I want for sure is the dwarf chain sword and the anubias
01-23-2013 02:02 AM
Rich Guano I have had the C. Wendtii and H. Difformis and anubias in a 10 Gallon. The wendtii is perfect for the back 3rd of the tank if you plan on keeping for more than a year to let it grow in. The difformis (my favorite) just does not have enough headroom to look its best in a 10. With regular trimming it will begin to form offshoots sideways to try and take over more real estate. To much trouble for me so I moved it al back to a larger tank. Of courese the anubias will do well in the front half. The repens may also be high maintenance in a 10 but only have kept it in a 38G (20" tall).
01-23-2013 01:40 AM
Colorblizzle -ludwigia repens
-egeria densa
-hygrophila difformis
-hygrophila corymbosa
-echinodorus tenellus
-anubias nana
-cryptocoryne wendtii
-bacopa monnieri
-ceratopteris thalictroides

That's the list of plants I want to choose from. Any input would be great. As far as how hard some are to grow special requirements etc. also best placement
01-23-2013 01:38 AM
Colorblizzle Thanks. I've had mbuna for over a year and nothing. So hopefully this will be the one
01-23-2013 01:30 AM
Rich Guano Best of luck breeding. By doing so you prove that a 10 is indeed not to small. For what better way to express the health and well being of a creature than to have them produce offspring. Except Humans of course.
01-23-2013 01:17 AM
Colorblizzle I've had this Aquaclear for about 3 years or so? And I have cleaned everything I have taken it apart and this is the 3rd impeller I've bought for it. My ac110 makes the noises on occasion as well. It never stops running tho my ac20 runs the filter dry then sits there and burns up. Usually late at night while I'm at work. Scares my son. Anyways I'm gonna take it and put it in my mbuna tank as a redundancy filter. I know my fish won't produce that much. I was hoping enough for slow growth tho which is what I'm looking for, slow steady growth. And my local plant guy that everybody swears by told me use powerhead a and HOB filters if I'm gonna dose CO2 but he said if not then the surface Gitation is gonna pull CO2 out and replace with oxygen. Good for fish bad for plants. Ill research it all and determine what ill do from there. But at this moment I'm leaning towards a canister called "rapids mini pro canister" claims 80GPH but probably does closer to 60 is bet. But the good thing is it has an adjustable spray bar so I can point it down for no agitation or slightly up and let the water ripple. I know most people will tell me it's a bad idea but I'm going to stock my tank with a breeding pair of pelvicachromis pulcher. Little big for the tank but a breeder I'm friends with wants to try something new and has been breeding this pair ina 10g for 3 years so it can be done. Doubt I will have Tom for dithers or anything tho. I've had them before the dig a bit but are very gentle on plants at least in my experiences. Ill be getting about 45-50 PAR at the center if the tank and about 25-30 at the edges. Should I be able to grow most species if plants? Regardless if their lighting needs? I wanted a carpet of baby tears but my plant guy said I NEED CO2 injection for that or at least flourish excel. I have a list of about a dozen ants I want but I don't know which ones are suitable
This thread has more than 15 replies. Click here to review the whole thread.

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome