Tools to Trim, Snip etc. for plant maintence - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-22-2012, 07:07 AM Thread Starter
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Tools to Trim, Snip etc. for plant maintence

As a raw beginner with a 55 gallon tank, I am starting to wonder how on earth should I trim and get rid of nasty, dead leaves that are rotting on the bottom of my tank. Everything was going so well, and then bam--algae and dying plants what to do??

I have changed the filters and added a UV Pump that has helped clear the water. I also have a Python, but I must be using it incorrectly since it takes forever to do a water change.

I have also scrubbed the sides to get rid of the algae and I have been doing water changes. A few days ago I did a massive water change and everyone seemed ok.



So one of my main questions is how to clean plants leaves that have algae on them.

But since the tank is 21" deep, I need some type of tools to pick up dead leaves, brush off detritus, and clip off damaged leaves.


I have looked at the ADA tools and while they are beautiful they are also pricey.

Anyone come up with less expensive alternatives?

Thanks so much for sharing!!

Nanci Byers
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-22-2012, 07:29 AM
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Any stainless steel scissors will do the trick for trimming. You can use a net and swirl the water around to kick up the leaves on the substrate and scoop it up with the net.
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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-22-2012, 11:55 AM
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I would go to your favorite auction site and search for something like "aquarium tool".

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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-22-2012, 01:20 PM
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I use those manicure scissors you can find at any convenience store for like 5 bucks. They work fine for me.
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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-22-2012, 04:20 PM
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My favorite tools all came from a veterinarian surgical kit, and I've replaced pieces over the years mostly with similar pieces from dissection and general surgery kits. Basics are long neck tweezers (8"-24"), long handled scissors (blunt tipped and sharp), and some resection tools that work great at tucking stems down or getting around under plants.

I recently replaced my 5", blunt tip scissors. From an aquarium supply site: $11.99. Medical supply house: $5. Top quality, low price, more variety.
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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-22-2012, 04:24 PM Thread Starter
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Those ars all good ideas--thanks. I guess what I meant is that the ADA tools are very long to enable the user to reach to the bottom of the tank easily. I have some health issues that make me a bit concerned to have my hands submerged in the tank water for any lenght of time.

Nanci Byers
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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-22-2012, 04:57 PM Thread Starter
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@OVT I went to eBay and found several options for aquarium tools. Just what I needed for a decent amount of money. Thanks so much for the suggestion!

I can't wait to get them!

Nanci

Nanci Byers
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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-22-2012, 09:49 PM
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That's where mine came from, but good ideas from other members.
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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 02-12-2013, 09:23 PM
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Plant Leaf Removal

I am not sure if you can find a long turkey baster, but it is my favorite tank care tool. I use it to gently blow water on the leaves of the plants and most of the leaves that are melting fall off and float to the surface, where they can easily be sucked up by the baster or caught with a net. I also like that the baster can get around the plants safely to clean with too. Does anyone wear gloves when cleaning a fish tank, what material are the made out of?
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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 02-12-2013, 09:39 PM
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I prefer trimming with a pair of scissors like these: http://www.amazon.com/Beadalon-211E-004-Squeeze-Scissors-Curved/dp/B004DGIT5U/ (these aren't the exact ones I have, but they are similar)

I had a longer pair but I don't like them... I like these because of the squeeze action, if I need to grab something quick I'm not fighting to get my fingers out of any holes. You really you don't need anything fancy, it just needs to be stainless steel.

I just net out any plant parts that float up to the surface - I usually do it once when I'm done and then again a few hours later.

For picking up dead leaves and whatnot off the bottom, nothing works better for me than a length of tubing with a plastic fork taped to the end.. I can stir up whatever I want with the fork and it gets sucked out by the tubing leaving my substrate mostly undisturbed
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post #11 of 11 (permalink) Old 02-13-2013, 02:32 AM
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GLA, Rumford Aquatics and Ebi-Ken are all very good quality for price.

Wave Scissors are my favorite all purpose and XL size pinsettes.
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