Question on surface agitation, C02, no air stone and a fully stocked tank. - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old 05-06-2011, 09:45 PM Thread Starter
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Question on surface agitation, C02, no air stone and a fully stocked tank.

Hi all

I'm going to upgrade my filter to an XP3. Unlike the Fluval, it seems I won't be able to adjust it the way I would like. I don't want to use the spray bar as I don't believe I'll be able to get good circulation in the tank (75g).

Using the "power head nozzle" that comes with the XP3 as shown in the photo, it seems like I'll end up putting the power head below the surface. With the Fluval, I have the output in the far right corner, an inch below the surface with the duckbill facing the front left corner, at a slight upward angle, which causes a little surface agitation and has been working well. I'm not sure if that will be possible with the XP3 as it seems it has to be facing straight ahead, not angled up or down or left or right. Unless I don't use the suction cup, but with the formed piece at the top, that may be a necessity.

My question is this... With a 75g, moderate/highly planted tank, C02, XP3, no airstone and a fully stocked tank, will my fish have enough oxygen in the water?

I understand that with surface agitation, you lose some C02, that's fine, I'm not worried about that... just trying to figure out if I need to keep the powerhead of the XP3 just below the surface to agitate the surface water to introduce oxygen into the water or if I can leave 6 inches down or so, which would provide better circulation in the tank. I've read some posts where they say the filter alone provides enough oxygen in the water for a stocked tank... I don't understand that logic, so I'm asking here to be certain.

Thanks


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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old 05-06-2011, 10:12 PM
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Can you attach a "Y" pipe so you can achieve both surface agitation and mid level circulation?
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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old 05-06-2011, 10:12 PM
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Here's a thought. Go ahead and use the spray bar, below the surface but angled upward to get some surface movement, and then add a powerhead or better yet a propeller-based pump like a Koralia Nano or Evolution to create more current.

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post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old 05-06-2011, 10:41 PM Thread Starter
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From what I've heard, the Rena tubing/attachements are not very flexible... and to be honest, don't think the flow would be enough to split. Good idea, but don't think it would be possible.

I was considering a power head with the Fluval I have now, but decided to go with the XP3 which should give me enough current so I wouldn't have to add something else to the tank. I'm buying a Hydor inline heater so I can take out the submersible that's in there now...

Still looking for an answer as to if there needs to be surface agitation or not for the fishies
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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old 05-07-2011, 03:23 PM
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Surface rippling is good for getting more oxygen into the water for any tank. If you are using relatively high light, you should be adding as much CO2 as you can, without harming the fish, and the fish can tolerate the CO2 much better if the water has lots of oxygen in it. For that situation, you badly need surface ripple. If you have low light, you can use less CO2 and surface ripple is less necessary.

Just because a canister filter comes with a bag of gadgets doesn't mean those are the best things to use. I would try to mix and match outlet parts until I had the outlet near the top, and angled a bit upwards. I would also look at using CPVC 1/2" pipe to supplement the parts that come with the filter. And, you can order parts that fit most filter outlets.

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post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old 05-08-2011, 08:03 PM
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Put a spray bar vertically instead of across the top. You give ripple from the holes near the surface, and water entering the tanks at all levels. If you don't have a long enough bar, just drill a bunch of holes in a PVC pipe.

You can also point a small powerhead at the surface from the bottom of the tank, but many powerheads cause too much of a swell at the top via this method.
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post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old 05-08-2011, 08:11 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JukeFish View Post
Here's a thought. Go ahead and use the spray bar, below the surface but angled upward to get some surface movement, and then add a powerhead or better yet a propeller-based pump like a Koralia Nano or Evolution to create more current.
Sounds like the right idea to me!
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post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old 05-09-2011, 03:39 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks guys!

Sharkfood, thanks for the idea on the spray bar. That should give me the circulation I'm looking for throught all the levels as you said. I'm going with an XP3. I haven't used Rena's in the past, but from what I've read on it, it should be strong enough for a 75g. I'm trying to find a solution where I can minimize the hardware in the tank. Worse case, I'll add a powerhead later if needed.
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post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old 05-09-2011, 06:16 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mog View Post
Sharkfood, thanks for the idea on the spray bar. That should give me the circulation I'm looking for throught all the levels as you said. I'm going with an XP3. I haven't used Rena's in the past, but from what I've read on it, it should be strong enough for a 75g. I'm trying to find a solution where I can minimize the hardware in the tank. Worse case, I'll add a powerhead later if needed.
This is just from my experience with the XP3. I have two in my 90g and I started out with the return spray bars oriented vertically as suggested above. I haven't found that they generate all that much current. Also, while I don't understand much about fluid dynamics, my observation has been that there seems to be more flow toward the end of the spray bar than at the beginning. So I got no surface agitation whatsoever from from spray bar outlets nearest the surface when I mounted them vertically.

While the XP3 is rated at 350 gph, I believe I read somewhere that the measured rate with media was only 187 gph. Which sounds about right to me. Even at the full 350 gph, which I don't think is attainable, your turnover would be less than 5x/hour. Realistically, your turnover is probably less than 3x/hour. I'm sure that's fine from a filtration point of view, but a lot of people are trying to get more water movement in their tanks than that.

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post #10 of 13 (permalink) Old 05-09-2011, 06:46 PM
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Mog,
For whatever it's worth...I like the surface agitation I get with my xP3 without the spray bar. I'm not sure how much you are looking for...but I included a few pictures so you could see what to expect. The tank is a 38g that is 12inches from front to back. You could easily make the output deeper or shallower with the stock pieces if you wanted.





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post #11 of 13 (permalink) Old 05-10-2011, 12:36 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the pics Soc; that's pretty much what I would like to accomplish in my tank. But being that my tank is a 75 gallon, not sure how well it's going to work out with the filter alone.

Like Jukefish states, it should be fine for filtration, but movement, maybe not so much...

Has anyone used a Fluval duckbill output and the power head attachement on the XP3? From the photo's I've seen, it appears that the power head on the XP3 may have more pressure and create more flow in the tank. Right now, my Fluval does an "okay" job of creating movement... if the XP3 power head does have more pressure, I may be able to get away with just that.

Either way, I ordered the XP3 last night and ordered a Maxi-Jet pro powerhead. I'll try the filter alone and see how that works and add the powerhead if needed. Right now, the tank is heavily planted, but they are all young plants. Once I get everything up and running and the plants start filling in, I'll probably need the power head regardless.

Thanks again all, really apprecate your time and help.
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post #12 of 13 (permalink) Old 05-10-2011, 01:10 PM
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In my 40B, I use one of these as the spraybar just didnt cut it for flow. One area would be fine but the other dead. This "directional u tube" can be found at Foster and Smith for around $8. The outflow is a ball type joint that can be swiveled around.

It did seem to get better flow but I still had some dead areas so I added a Koralia nano to get a little boost. I aim the output from the filter up toward the surface a bit and the Koralia toward the bottom. They are on opposite ends so they create a circular flow.


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post #13 of 13 (permalink) Old 05-10-2011, 02:40 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks Nate, I like that. I'll see how this "power head" that comes with the XP3 works, if not, I'll definitely give that a try.
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