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Diy 2.5g nano canister filter

3448 Views 14 Replies 6 Participants Last post by  MlDukes
Well i finally talked my boss into letting me keep a small tank on my desk in my office his stipulation is it cant look cluttered and cant be big at all. I got him laughing by telling him a 20G is small to me LOL. So i decided on a 2.5G tank i saw at petsmart. Keeping in mind the clean look i decided to make my own canister filter for it so i can hide it under my desk. So i drew up a few layouts and searched around for needed materials and found i have almost everything for the project, except for a really small water pump. The smallest i found was about 20GPH adjustible to 80GPH. Looked perfect. Also on sale i picked up a nano heater for 4.50 at petsmart too. So i wanted to put my heater inside of the canister as well (not too much room for it in the tank). Here is what i have so far (I AM A PAINTSHOP MASTER LMAO) So let me know what you think about the idea. I will keep you posted on the progress of the project throughout the week!!!


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What are you going to use as the canister itself?
Make sure it sits in a 3g bucket in case it leaks. lol
I am currently looking at what to use as the canister. I have thought of a large mason jar so it is solid. Or i have some metal jar type canisters i have that u use for sugar/flour and those types of things that u would put on your counter top. That way i can mount the water pump to the bottom of the lid and it will secure tightly also. And make it easy to open up and clean.
I would just buy a small tom's canister filter, they're only like 25 bucks, and don't leak. I have a feeling if this leaks, it's gonna be all bad in your office.
Lol ya ive looked at one of those. I guess i just wanted to try a new project. Ive done the numbers and total build cost for this setup will be about 15.00 so 15 bucks for a fun project is a good deal. I will be doing all of the test runs at my house and get it perfect before i take it into my office.
Manufacturers don't use metal containers for their cans for a couple reasons. One I'm sure is cost but another must certainly be rust.
This is a stainless steel type is that ok?
What's the lid, how does it attach, how long will that seal hold up in water and how many openings and closings before it wont seal?

Stainless comes in many grades. A container made from high quality stainless I'd guess would cost more than the store bought filter mentioned above. :wink:
The lid is glass with a rubber around the bottom as the seal it's the airtight type with the metal clasp that let's it swing open and closed. Not sure on the how many times thing. I have a few in a box I'm not using so I figure I might give them a try.
Lol I will I'll post some pics
Redsea nano filter works very well... Only costs 8.00 plus 5.00 shipping. Works well for up to 3 gallons and will provide everything you are looking for.

I have a 2.5 gallon tank at my desk, its a good size for nano fish, shrimps, or beta.
Some ideas can be found via a google search of the board with the term "DIY Canister"

Some good, some not so good. lol
I made a DIY canister once... It worked (and didnt leak) but wasnt practical at all.

I used a small fountain pump that i had lying around. Unfortunately it didnt have the head to pump water from below the tank. It only worked when setting next to the tank.

So make sure that 20-80gph pump has the head that you need... and remember the higher the head the lower the flow.

Also priming was a pain, their was always air in the canister. Not sure how to incorporate a fix for that. Tubing and a syringe maybe?

Opening the canister without making a mess was impossible. the canister and all tubing had to be carried to a sink..... ball valves and quik connects would almost be a must if your running tubes behind a desk.

Final thoughts: It was a fun and challenging build. Although it worked, didnt leak and did the task - the practicallity of it was a failure. After hours of time, spliced wires, ruined containers, wasted sealant, and tubing I should have gone with a Tom Rapids mini - id probably still be using it today.

Although Im an avid DIY'er I honestly think canister filters should be left to the professionals. However im not saying it cant be done.....
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