Need a SHORT canister for shelf under tank... Options?
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Old 03-06-2014, 04:02 AM   #1
kman
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Need a SHORT canister for shelf under tank... Options?


Can anyone recommend a good high quality canister filter that has a SHORT main canister section?

I read this thread: Short Canister Filter Recommendation?

... which is, of course, similar, but it's a bit old so perhaps new options and information has come to light since.

I currently have a Finnex PX-360 which has served me well, but I have a larger tank than before and I would like a little more flow than it offers me. It's rated at 96 gallons per minute and up to a 25 gal tank (I have 17), but it's less than full rated flow with the canister on a shelf below the tank, of course. So what I need is a new, similarly small canister with a higher flow rate than I have.

The spray bar I had before gave me a little better flow, but I like the aesthetics of glass lily pipes in a rimless tank (ADA 60P style) better. Perhaps a glass lily pipe would work but I haven't found one. (one, actually, on eBay, but it's not very good, and only vertical seemed to work better in my tank)

So now I'm looking for canister with a higher flow rate so I can get the water moving more. I'm trying to get as much equipment as possible out of the tank, so I want to add an inline heater soon, which will drop the already-a-touch-too-low flow rate a smidge further, even. (So clearly adding a powerhead to increase flow is the opposite of what I want to accomplish, visually.) A canister upgrade should give me all I need.

Which bring us to the problem: My tank is on a side table (side table/credenza) with an open shelf under the main top, but that shelf only has 12 7/8" clearance below the top, max, but with a trim panel, so the opening is only 10.5" to get the canister into place. See below for photos which will make this wordiness more clear. Worse, the hoses have to get up and out the back, so you really need room to curve them back then up, else they would have curve down several inches then turn to go back up to the tank, to get around that trim panel. The shelf is 32" below the top of the tank (the highest level the canister needs to pump the water). (There is a mini-stand for the tank that might go away, which would drop that by about 3.5") My Finnex canister is only about 8" tall, and it BARELY fits, once the hoses have a chance to curve to get out the back. The hoses have to curve over 45 degrees back, and then back up vertical, to get out the back of the table and up to the tank. So a taller canister probably won't work. I could technically put one on the floor, but I'd rather not, and only gains a couple inches of vertical room, but adds a lot more lift for the filter to overcome. Plus it wouldn't look as nice. I have my co2 canister there now, and it's visually annoying to see under the open table legs (per my wife, who cares more about such things).

A picture is worth a thousand words, so here you are:

Current Finnex filter: (yes, that's on a dish, which keeps random water drops off the wood and offers a small degree of safety in the event of minor leaks... which so far have not happened, other than a little water while removing the canister for cleaning)


Side table and shelf: (ugh, flash made the tank look horrible, but it shows the shelf well)


Showing the underside of the shelf (trying to clean up the wiring, and partway through I realized I need to look for a new canister to really resolve these issues):


I plan to put more of the storage boxes (you can see part of one to the left) in front of the filter to hide it further, but I still have the height issue to deal with it.

The thread I linked above mentioned the Eheim Ecco Pro 2232 at 12" high and the Fluval 205 at 10.5" high, but I'm not so sure either will work for my setup (especially the Ecco, since it might not even fit onto the shelf without turning it sideways and rotating it and hoping! Worse, canister height is only part of the issue since the hoses have to fit as well.

Can anyone offer some advice?
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Last edited by kman; 03-06-2014 at 04:59 AM.. Reason: clarification
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Old 03-06-2014, 04:20 AM   #2
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Fluval G3 comes to mind. Pricey but hi tech.

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Old 03-06-2014, 04:22 AM   #3
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I think the small filstar (xp1) is pretty short. You'd have to check the dimensions against your space though.
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Old 03-06-2014, 04:30 AM   #4
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agree with the rena xp1
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Old 03-06-2014, 04:34 AM   #5
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Why not the 501?
Here are the dimensions:
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Old 03-06-2014, 04:40 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stealthypotatoes View Post
Why not the 501?
I think Zoo Med 501 is pretty close to FX-360 that OP is thinking to replace?

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Old 03-06-2014, 04:47 AM   #7
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Oh my bad, I didn't see the part where he said he wanted higher flow rate.
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Old 03-06-2014, 04:51 AM   #8
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How about the Eheim ecco pro 2234? Should fit your 12" clearance
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Old 03-06-2014, 04:52 AM   #9
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The Zoomed 501 has 79 gph, even less than the 95 gph my Finnex has (which is why I went Finnex originally... I actually had that one under consideration, too). The Finnex was great on the smaller tanks I had before, but the latest upgrade is clearly pushing it's limits.

I've seen some good recs for the Rena/Filstar XP1 filters. It certainly has more power, too, at 250 gph. Does anyone have the actual measurements and clearance needed? Also, API seems to be the brand name of these now. They make dandy test kits, but I always sort of viewed them as junky otherwise. Are these filters (as sold today, under API, not old reliable and no longer available Rena-branded models) quality stuff?

Ditto for the Fluval G3. (also, how pricey is pricey? Price isn't a huge issue, but within some semblance of reason, of course)
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Old 03-06-2014, 04:57 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stealthypotatoes View Post
How about the Eheim ecco pro 2234? Should fit your 12" clearance
But will it fit the 10.5" opening to get it onto the shelf? Plus room for the hoses? If it's actually the size mentioned in the old thread I linked in the OP, it's 12" tall, which leaves no room for hoses, and I'm not how easy it would be to maneuver it onto the shelf past the trim plate.

Annoying, I know. I did a lot of research when I first bought the Finnex, and was thrilled to find one that worked so well. Sad that it no longer cuts it. (and I don't think two Finnex units is the answer... although technically perhaps that's possible?)
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Old 03-06-2014, 04:59 AM   #11
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Why cant you put the filter under the stand? Next to the paintball tank. There probably a couple inches extra.
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Old 03-06-2014, 05:04 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OVT View Post
Fluval G3 comes to mind. Pricey but hi tech.

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*whistles* Hooo, wow. That's fancy. Pricey, but cool as heck. Super cool.

Amazon.com: Fluval G3 Advanced Filtration System: Pet Supplies Amazon.com: Fluval G3 Advanced Filtration System: Pet Supplies

Definitely on the upper end... a little past, actually... than I had really budgeted for this. Not entirely out of the question, but requires more thought.

But I can't really tell how the hoses go. Size seems marginal, depending on exactly how much more clearance is needs for the hoses.

I'll have to seek out more photos and measurements. And ponder whether I want to spend that much. A cheaper option is an easier decision, for sure...
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Old 03-06-2014, 05:06 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stealthypotatoes View Post
Why cant you put the filter under the stand? Next to the paintball tank. There probably a couple inches extra.
Aesthetics, mostly. The paintball tank there really annoys me (and my wife) as it is. It's surprisingly visible there, even though it seems like you'd barely notice it, you do.

Also, that much lower means that much less flow out of whatever I upgrade to, due to the extra height it needs to lift up the water.
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Old 03-06-2014, 05:23 AM   #14
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There is a number of threads on TPT that use G3 and G6, including some review tidbits . As they say, search is your friend. Same goes for pricing as I have seen them at lower prices online then at Amazon. I also remember seeing a lot of data and pictures on Fluval's site.

I actually used 2 x PX-360 on my 12 long for over a year: there is something to be said for filter redundancy. I am back to one as I have been contemplating a single larger filter so that I can connect Hydor inine heater, but something else always comes up.

I have also used a single FX-360 on my 17g, but also thought it was not pulling it.

Edit: looking at your pictures I cannot tell how much clearance you have between the tank and the wall. If you move the tank forward to the table's front edge, you might have another option: hang one or 2 360's on the back, all hardware is included. I find that using the black fittings that came with it instead of hoses makes for even slimmer profile. And you get more flow by lifting the filter up.

If the look of the pipes gets on your nerves, you can hide them by letting some plants to grow out of the tank. Your wife will love the look .

Edit 2: you have several options to camouflage your co2 tank. Put it behind the filter. Or use books, old LP records, flower pots, DVDs, even colorful shoe boxes, antique hat boxes, etc for that bohemian literatti look.
Now you owe me $50 for the interior design consultations

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Old 03-06-2014, 06:58 AM   #15
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^^ LOL!!!

My wife IS an interior designer, so that would go... Poorly.

I have a black background at the moment but my wife doesn't want it... Still trying to win her over on that. The top of the tank is super smooth and sleek, though, with a super slim Current USA Sat+ light, so more junk coming out the top is what I'm trying to avoid. I just went to glass lily pipes also, so not really compatible with any HOB (-like) canister.

The co2 tank is too tall to fit under the shelf, unfortunately. The tank is perfect, but the reg is too tall and too vertical to fit, unfortunately. It just barely fits under the bottom shelf, as it is. I could put something in front, true, but I think it's simply cleaner if I can minimize what's under there, as opposed to adding more to camouflage a simple small tank.

I watched some videos on the G3, and cool as it is, I don't think it will work. The hoses route straight up vertically, and there are only 2" to clear above the unit, most of which is used by that fitting. Also, even if could wedge it in there (with some difficulty) it needs top access to remove the cool cartridges, and I have no top access so I'd have to pull it out each time (after detaching the hose assembly).

So far only the dual Finnex 360s seem like they'd work, but all the extra hoses (and having to clean an extra canister) definitely makes it a less desirable solution. :-/
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