3gal ikea vase with DIY filter (56K) - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 07-23-2011, 08:43 PM Thread Starter
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3gal ikea vase with DIY filter (56K)

So here's my planted vase. The marbles and bridge aren't my idea/doing. This is my 5 year old sons aquarium, and I certainly wasn't about to tell him not to decorate his tank any way he liked it. Especially after I put in dirt (MTS), rocks, and plants, without talking to him about it. I think he's a little upset that I changed his tank without his permission, but at the same time, he really likes the plants in there.

Flora: one bulb thing that I bought from petsmart
Three pieces of semi-submerged "lucky bamboo" (not actually bamboo) Dracaena sanderiana
two shoots of some kind of shade growing swamp reed (help with I.D. please?)

Fauna: Three minnows of some sort. I think they are some kind of shiner hybrid.
Soon to be putting in 10 Fire Red Cherry Shrimp. Just need to wait for the heat to drop a bit.

All comments, questions, and criticisms welcome. The first few pics are the vase, and the rest are the filter that I made. If there's interest, then I'll explain how I made the filter/heater combo as well.

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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 07-23-2011, 09:48 PM
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It looks great. Interestingly enough, the bridge actually works with the stalks of the dracaena - it looks like it's in a thick forest.

I am dying for info on the filter and heater build.
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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 07-23-2011, 11:24 PM Thread Starter
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The filter/heater isn't all that much. I didn't post about it because I forgot to take pictures of the base of the PVC pipe. I'll take some pics of the back so you can see the whole thing in action. All I did was drill a ton of holes in the bottom of the PVC pipe (the small holes in the V shape is the top) Then I siliconed the PVC pipe into the vase. I put ain air tube going down to the bottom of the pipe. Then I filled the spot between the vase and the pipe with bio media for a canister filter about 6 inches up. After that I put the heater in the same spot. Now due to the air going up the pipe, it pulls water down through the gravel, into the pipe, through the bio media, up past the filter, and it comes out the holes in the top.

Again, I'll take pics of the back, in case my description isn't detailed enough.
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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 07-24-2011, 07:51 PM
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really like your diy filter, love to see any more pics of of it, i want to make a low flow betta tank for work and this type of filter would work perfect along for allowing me to use a non traditional "tank"

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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 08-26-2011, 01:24 AM Thread Starter
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Sorry, totally forgot about this thread. Here's a pic of the filter:

A couple notes on what I would do differently. I would use bigger holes, as it's hard to get much flow through those tiny little holes. I have a little, but probably 100% of the water every... 8 hours? Not the best, but good enough for shrimps. I took the shiners out, and put them in a different tank. It's now a shrimp tank... and the bloody shrimp have found a way into the filter! Ohwell... as long as they're alive and happy, who am I to make their life choices for them?

So, bigger holes, OR cut a half inch wide slot down the center of the PVC , about 2 inches down from the top.

Also, I would add a top to the filter, so when the water is full, it doesn't spill over the sides.

And the hose idea isn't working out so well. Do yourself a favor if you use something like what I've set up, and run your air hose through a piece of 1/2 inch PVC. Put two 90 degree fittings attached together, to make a 180 degree fitting, and have the one piece of PVC go all the way to about 1/2 an inch from the bottom of the tank. Now the air hose only has to be about 5 or 6 inches into the PVC. But fill a good couple of inches of that PVC up with GE 100% silicone, so the air hose can't come out.

Then you will need to weigh the 1/2 inch PVC down. I would personally use a smooth-to-threaded coupling on the 180 degree coupling (on the side that is out of the aquarium) and attach a galvanized pipe to said threaded coupling. This will keep the 1/2 inch PVC pipe from trying to float, and rattle in the vase.

As you can see, I just put the heater into the large piece of PVC. It's out of sight, and out of mind. Perfect.

Again, sorry I took so long to post about the filter. Once I get the chance, I'm going to fix mine... trouble is, now that I have plants, rocks, shrimp, etc. in there, it's going to be a huge chore trying to get the bio material out.
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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 09-12-2011, 07:36 PM
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I would also add a little sponge material to the filter for beneficial bacteria to grow. I love the idea though an i just might have to copy it

20 Gallon High- Diy co2, 48w, flourite. Still new to this whole planted tank thing
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