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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
To say I'm having trouble with algae is an understatement. I decided to see just how big this algae is and what was going to be needed to remove it. I absent mindedly put a pond plant in my little 5g cookie tank, guess whos got a green cast to it already.

I got a flow through pump hooked up to a regular filter cartridge, like the ones for filter drinking water.

1 micron removes the algae (of course it would) but the filter gets clogged quite readily.

30 micron filter only removes the larger forms of the algae, will not remove it all.

10 micron seems to be doing the job well, removing the algae and not clogging up readily.

The filter pictured is a 1 micron.

I am going to throw in some polymer as well to help it along.

As far as the little tank, geeez, water changes, water changes water changes is all I can do.
 

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You can't blast a tank/w light and expect it to be algae free.
And working on the symptoms instead of the cause only last till you stop
working. Then the algae comes back.
You really have no plants in there to help out/w the algae.
You need to find out what that light is rated for. The light needs to be reduced
in hrs and/or intensity.
 
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Anacharis,duckweed,watersprite,allowed to float on the surface, would work both to reduce light intensity,and are fast grower's providing less for algae to thrive on assuming you are using some type of fertilizer's
If not using anything for fertilizer cept fish food's/fish waste,then you need to reduce the growth of both plant's and thus algae by reducing light intensity and or duration.
Cannot drive plant growth with light alone, unless one has the ability to readily increase CO2 and fertz to match the light energy.
I have run low tech/low energy tank's with fish food/fish poo and flourish comprehensive at twice a week, but lighting was low energy.
Growth was measured in week's/month's, and plant mass was much more than what your photo indicates.
Algae was near non exsistent, and water changes were maybe once a month or two with relatively small fish load.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
No ferts, no fish, no co2, limiting all factors which would lead to more algae. This isn't your typical algae, it is from the local water ways here in the south. It's in the water column and only attaches to the substrate when it becomes over populated. The price for using pond plants. Right now I got it in check using a 10 micron filter and limiting the photo period. I may try some floating plants like duck weed since it grows fast and will suck up the nutrients at a higher rate.
 

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No ferts, no fish, no co2, limiting all factors which would lead to more algae. This isn't your typical algae, it is from the local water ways here in the south. It's in the water column and only attaches to the substrate when it becomes over populated. The price for using pond plants. Right now I got it in check using a 10 micron filter and limiting the photo period. I may try some floating plants like duck weed since it grows fast and will suck up the nutrients at a higher rate.
If you can find some Water Hyacinth, it should help a bit with the water quality It's a dirted tank?
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 · (Edited)
No dirt, fluorite and crushed feldspar.

The 10 micron filter is doing a very nice job, I will incorporate it into my final DIY filter. I just so happen to have to canisters out in the garage, just got to plumb them in.

Water is running crystal clear now, I like it.

There use to be a pond full of those near by, may have to stop and see if there still there.
 

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No dirt, fluorite and crushed feldspar.

The 10 micron filter is doing a very nice job, I will incorporate it into my final DIY filter. I just so happen to have to canisters out in the garage, just got to plumb them in.

Water is running crystal clear now, I like it.

There use to be a pond full of those near by, may have to stop and see if there still there.
If you do, set the collected WH into a white 5 gallon bucket and let the critters show themselves. No point in letting Water Tigers or Dragonfly larvae in a tank with your fish.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
This micro algae problem has me rethinking my whole design on the DIY filter. I didn't account for this when I first designed it. Another interesting project. I got a list going, making cabinet doors for my daughter's book shelves, redo the filter, a system for properly addressing putting the new type braided fishing line on a spool, ( love/hate ) relationship with that stuff. rewriting a MS Access database, I need to set my priorities, filter first.
 

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Dude, just buy a UV sterilizer. The algae will be gone in a week and won't come back. This filtering will never remove everything.

Also, for the fishing line you need the wiffle ball method. Have you seen that before? Cut a wiffle ball in half and drill a hole through both halves. Pass some threaded rod through the holes and put wing nuts on both sides. Put the spool on the threaded rod between the wiffle balls. You can put the end of the threaded rod in a vice and adjust the wing nuts to decide on the backpressure you want while loading line on the spools.

Sometimes I feel so useful.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I thought about a uv system, will look into a bit further as it would eliminate ultrafiltration

Just love the fishing line idea, never did it before. I'm also considering using a silicone treatment on the braided line to reduce wind knots.


I just remembered I got a uv sterilizer at work sitting there doing nothing. It's used to sterilize dry utensils but can be modified for water.
 

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I would buy one of the fish specific ones, the water needs to be in front of the light for a certain amount of time to kill the bacteria. The directions are pretty specific.

And I would highly advise against the silicone coatings for the braid, especially if you're planning on casting it. I didn't like the way the line did anything after I tried it, from knots, to casting and just running through the guides. Once you learn to cast it well you won't need it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 · (Edited)
Interesting that someone else has tried the silicone on the braided line already, thanks for the heads up. Braided line is a fisherman's best friend and worst enemy all at the same time. It's really specific to the amount of weight your throwing and switching from heavy to light weight and back will cause issues as the line gets tensioned at differing rates on the spool.

I'll look into what I got at the lab and the specs on an aquarium set up and see if I can duplicate it or not.

June 11
==============

I managed a couple of things today, one, I got the lady at the pet store to scrap a bunch of the snails off the glass and bag them up for me (algae eaters they are), I got enough algae to feed an army of snails.

I also made a find of some more native aquatic plants, anyone guess what they are, no really what are they.

Hopefully with the new plants, snails, still running the 10 micron filter things will calm down long enough for me to get the other filter up and running.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I had time to day to install the DIY filter with the two in-line Cobalt pumps. SO far its working pretty good. I'll wait a few days then turn on the CO2 and see what happens. Hoping those little snails start to multiply soon.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Some of you may cringe with what I did, others will think it was ok. In general, so far it has worked. After exhausting all possible scenarios , lighting, distance, no CO2, more CO2, no ferts, 90% water changes every 3-5 days I was unable to get ahead of the algae problem. Keep in mind the plants I have come from a storm water pond loaded with free floating micro algae, pea soup type stuff.

So what I did was turned off the filter and isolated it from the rest of the tank, Left the air running to keep up circulation. I siphoned all of the debris I could from all over the tank until it was drained. Filled it with tap water and again siphoned all of it out using the opportunity to again clean as much as I could. When emptied for the third time I filled again with tap water, when full I dosed it with enough chlorine so that I could smell it coming off the top. Set the timer for 30 minutes and waited it out. Drained and cleaned the tank again and refilled several times. Final fill I then dechlorinated the water and turned the system back on. The plants survived the ordeal with a small amount of leaf loss ( i"m ok with that ). So far a week out after this process I am not growing algae any more and the plants are coming back nicely. Note to self ( do a chlorine dunk of pond plants before you put them in the tank )
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I went on vacation last week, a week of hands off with the big tank and the algae problem. I turned off the light before I left and placed a single bulb, full spectrum light next to the outside of the tank and left it lit all week long. The tank looks great, algae has died back and the plants are now growing towards the single light. I turned back on the lights this monring, lets see what happens now.
 
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