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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi All,
I recently took down and traded in all the SW livestock and accessories, it became to costly in terms of $ and time to maintain.

I am currently cleaning with 2 Gallons vinegar and water cycling.

I am curious to the filtration - as the guy at the LFS said just use the Filter cartridges for the Biocube with the normal pump and I am all set.

Do you agree - or is there a recommeneded (inexpensive) filter for the biocube that works great for the the Biocube?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
The stock filter on the biocube will work great. Actually... the bioballs in there work better for freshwater than they do for saltwater. Throw a biocibe cartridge in there an you are set. You might get a foam block for the intake, but other than that you are good. :)

Pretty sure I threw the Bioballs out - but I do recall they are a "Nitrate" facotry...that wouldnt pose a problem in FW planted?

When you say a foam block for the intake, do you mean -
http://www.bigalspets.com/Fluval-Fo...olor_map,price,size_name&searchRank=salesrank

Would this be used in conjunction with the Biocube Filter Carts?
http://www.buy.com/retail/product.asp?sku=211501715&sellerid=32176251

Thanks a lot for your help!
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Pretty sure I threw the Bioballs out - but I do recall they are a "Nitrate" facotry...that wouldnt pose a problem in FW planted?

When you say a foam block for the intake, do you mean -
http://www.bigalspets.com/Fluval-Fo...olor_map,price,size_name&searchRank=salesrank

Would this be used in conjunction with the Biocube Filter Carts?
http://www.buy.com/retail/product.asp?sku=211501715&sellerid=32176251

Thanks a lot for your help!

If anyone has feedback in the quoted bolded statement above it would be appreciated.

I am going to scrape all of the corraline algae from the saltwater off today as the vinegar has loosened it. I will change all the water as well. I presume there will be vinegar residue still so should refill with water, cycle, and empty a few times still to ensure no vinegar left over on any of the equipment right?
 

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Pretty sure I threw the Bioballs out - but I do recall they are a "Nitrate" facotry...that wouldnt pose a problem in FW planted?
I've been running a 29 Gallon Biocube for the past year and half...not really planted (just have some Java Moss and Moss Balls in it...had some duckweed in it but I happened to kill it off some how!) with anywhere from 8-10 Bee Gobies, 2 Amanio Shrimp and several Cherry Shrimp of different ages in it...just added another 4 Bee Gobies and two Ottos for algae cleanup this past weekend. I do a water change every two to three weeks of about 7.5 gallons.

I hate to say this, but I haven't checked my water quality in ages (I work 5 days a week away from home) but I haven't had any major die off in my bee gobies or shrimp.

Once I get settled into my new house I'll be able to spend more time with this tank and getting my 7.5 Pico Planted Shrimp tank setup and my 75 Gallon Community tank...
 

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Pretty sure I threw the Bioballs out - but I do recall they are a "Nitrate" facotry...that wouldnt pose a problem in FW planted?

When you say a foam block for the intake, do you mean

Would this be used in conjunction with the Biocube Filter Carts?


Thanks a lot for your help!
Bioballs aren't a nitrate factory in FW in my opinion. And even if they were it would just be free plant food. I have a heavily stocked 75 gallon tank and I have a sump with... you guessed it bioballs, and that's it. Check it out, link is in my sig.

That foam block would probably work. You put it behind the intake slats to keep small fish and shrimps from getting sucked in as an added bonus it is basically an extra filter.

No problem, sorry for the late response!
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Bioballs aren't a nitrate factory in FW in my opinion. And even if they were it would just be free plant food. I have a heavily stocked 75 gallon tank and I have a sump with... you guessed it bioballs, and that's it. Check it out, link is in my sig.

That foam block would probably work. You put it behind the intake slats to keep small fish and shrimps from getting sucked in as an added bonus it is basically an extra filter.

No problem, sorry for the late response!
Thanks - I am sure I can find bioballs cheap online somewhere. I am reading through your journal right now, 25 pages to go but wanted to post my questions while reading.

What determines if a Sump system should be used?
What determines if CO2 system is needed?
With 2 x 36W Power Compact lights in the Biocube (Replaced Actinic with Daylight so both are Daylight), am I fairly limited to certain plants? For example, should I avoid "Stems" or any other general plant type.

I have plenty of driftwood, the mechanical filter, 50/50 Flourite and Gravel, what kind of stock am I looking at?

Right now - I know I am getting a Roseline shark, but other than that no ideas yet. I really like the Knight Goby, but have not seen one at my LFS...
 

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Pretty sure I threw the Bioballs out - but I do recall they are a "Nitrate" facotry...that wouldnt pose a problem in FW planted?
By "nitrate factory" I think they just mean that they house the beneficial bacteria that converts ammonia to nitrites and nitrites to nitrates, so yes, they technically are a nitrate factory, but that is what you want your biological filter to be doing for you. I hope this helped.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
By "nitrate factory" I think they just mean that they house the beneficial bacteria that converts ammonia to nitrites and nitrites to nitrates, so yes, they technically are a nitrate factory, but that is what you want your biological filter to be doing for you. I hope this helped.
Understood - I just know while I had this tank setup as a Saltwater - the Saltwater enthusiasts frowned upon it for a multitude of reasons, was wondering what is different in the FW realm that it becomes more beneficial than harmful.

(Saltwater tends to rely on Natural filtration greatly, especially in smaller tanks, in which Live Rock and Water Flow become the "filtration" system).

Reposting questions so they do not get lost:
What determines if a Sump system should be used?
What determines if CO2 system is needed?
With 2 x 36W Power Compact lights in the Biocube (Replaced Actinic with Daylight so both are Daylight), am I fairly limited to certain plants? For example, should I avoid "Stems" or any other general plant type.

I have plenty of driftwood, the mechanical filter, 50/50 Flourite and Gravel, what kind of stock am I looking at?

Right now - I know I am getting a Roseline shark, but other than that no ideas yet. I really like the Knight Goby, but have not seen one at my LFS...
 

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If you had plenty of light when that tank was set up as a reef tank, you have way too much light for a planted tank. It is hard to guess how much light a PC fixture will give you, because those have had reflectors ranging from non-existent to very good, and that makes all the difference in the world. I have a small bio-cube, 8 gallon tank, which had a PC light. I had to replace that light to avoid having way too much light. I suspect you will have to do the same. And, that determines whether you need CO2 or not.
 

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The term nitrate factory comes from the build up of detritus buildup on the bio balls. high nitrates in any aquarium environment lead to bad algae outbreaks. Reef setups suffer the most with high nitrates. I actually removed the bio balls and added a media rack for my cube.Unless you put in some good filter media in that over flow your going to get a lot of decaying plant matter in that large chamber. Good luck,let us know how it goes.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
The term nitrate factory comes from the build up of detritus buildup on the bio balls. high nitrates in any aquarium environment lead to bad algae outbreaks. Reef setups suffer the most with high nitrates. I actually removed the bio balls and added a media rack for my cube.Unless you put in some good filter media in that over flow your going to get a lot of decaying plant matter in that large chamber. Good luck,let us know how it goes.
This is more in line with my original thoughts - but as always in forums you have varying opinions and so many variables :D

What is meant by "Media Rack"? Any links to one?
Also - someone mentioned that Nitrates would "be free food" for plants?

I hate new stuff....:icon_cool
 

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The term nitrate factory comes from the build up of detritus buildup on the bio balls. high nitrates in any aquarium environment lead to bad algae outbreaks.
In a planted tank high nitrates do not lead to algae problems. You can put 4 times the normal dose of nitrates in the tank when you fertilize, and still not cause an algae problem, nor a fish problem. But, low nitrates do lead to BGA problems. The whole purpose of any biofilter is to be a nitrate factory. They convert ammonia to nitrates, which are a necessary plant nutrient.
 

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In a planted tank high nitrates do not lead to algae problems. You can put 4 times the normal dose of nitrates in the tank when you fertilize, and still not cause an algae problem, nor a fish problem. But, low nitrates do lead to BGA problems. The whole purpose of any biofilter is to be a nitrate factory. They convert ammonia to nitrates, which are a necessary plant nutrient.
I will have to disagree. High nitrates will cause large amounts of algae to form if your conditions aren't right. Also,high nitrates do hurt fish and their health. So if you had 200ppm of nitrates are you saying there would be no issues?
 

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I will have to disagree. High nitrates will cause large amounts of algae to form if your conditions aren't right. Also,high nitrates do hurt fish and their health. So if you had 200ppm of nitrates are you saying there would be no issues?
Nobody said that 200 ppm nitrates would cause no issues. The only thing I said is that a nitrate factory is exactly what you want in a freshwater tank. The most harmful substances to freshwater fish are ammonia and nitrites. Both of these are broken down by beneficial bacteria and converted into nitrates. So you really want a nitrate factory in your filtration system.

Now, if you have a lot of plants, they might eat the nitrates for food, but if you don't, you will have to do regular water changes to remove nitrates after the bacteria has had a go at it.
 

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What determines if a Sump system should be used?
What determines if CO2 system is needed?
With 2 x 36W Power Compact lights in the Biocube (Replaced Actinic with Daylight so both are Daylight), am I fairly limited to certain plants? For example, should I avoid "Stems" or any other general plant type.

I have plenty of driftwood, the mechanical filter, 50/50 Flourite and Gravel, what kind of stock am I looking at?

Right now - I know I am getting a Roseline shark, but other than that no ideas yet. I really like the Knight Goby, but have not seen one at my LFS...
You don't "need" a sump, it is just my preferred method of filtration. I like the added water volume, the surface skimming, and it's a great place to hide heaters and what not.

The lighting in a biocube is plenty capable of growing nearly all freshwater plants, and you will definitely need some form of CO2... Unless you want an algae farm.

I'd prefer not to tell you how much to stock, because most people dis agree with my levels of stocking, :hihi:

Personally I don't think roselines are a suitable candidate for a bio cube. The get large, like open water etc. Knight gobies are super cool!
 

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Biocube similar to my Aquapod

One of my tanks is a 24 gal Aquapod that is very similar to your Biocube and you will find it is a great aquarium for planted FW tank.

Wth respect to some of your queries:

I use a 32 W regular bulb Sunpaq bulb and leave the Actinic turned off.

That gives me plenty of light for a low tech planted tank using Diane Walstad's methods (except the tank doesn't have sunlight exposure). I have grown a lush variety of Crypts, Vallisneria, Java fern, etc in it and my other tanks with similar or less Watts/gal lighting. You shouldn't need the costs or hassles of CO2, extra fertilizer, etc unless you want them. I have more posts elsewhere if you want a more detailed list of plants or tank setup.

Enjoy.:icon_excl
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Well - here are some pictures. I am absolutely loving this setup, as being from Buffalo, NY - This kind of setup is something I feel can be seen on a walk through the woods...
 

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