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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My RCS are breeding like crazy, and the tiny shrimplets are all over the place so I asked in another thread what would be a good way to cover the intake of my filter to make it shrimplet safe. I was using a simple plastic mesh piece before, but I found that this is WAY better!

I went ahead and used an AquaClear foam pad to put over the intake of the Aquaclear 50 hang-on I have. I stood the foam pad up length-wise and took a pair of scissors and basically "drilled" a slit/hole right down the top to about halfway into the foam pad. Took a couple of minutes to get it deep enough but I managed to do it perfectly. I cut off the excess foam on the bottom that would not be needed. I also trimmed around the sides of the foam pad in order to make the pad smaller since I have a 10 gallon.

I removed the old mesh thing I had over the intake (the holes were definitely big enough for the shrimplets to get through) and placed the foam pad on. It fit PERFECTLY! Nice and very snug, definitely not able to fall off without me having to use some force to pull it off.

I was initially worried about seriously diminishing the water flow by using this pad, but the flow seemed to be almost completely unaffected. I couldn't tell at all in fact if it was slower or not.

This, in my opinion, was the PERFECT solution for many reasons...

#1
the foam pad is extremely pourous and there is no way the a shrimp can get through it and get sucked in due to the "labyrinth" style of the pads' construction.

#2 the water flow is not restricted due to the same "labyrinth" structure because the water is able to navigate through the "foam maze" very easily.

#3 you can easily cut it to fit any type of intake, wide, thin, long, short, etc. All you need is the foam pad and a pair of scissors.

#4 any material trapped on the pad can easily be removed, and the pad is very easy to clean when it gets clogged. I have been using the same pad in the filter itself and have zero problems cleaning it when it gets clogged with mulm and other crap.

#5 the pad is made for filtering, and therefore meant for this as it is extremely durable and wont disintegrate like panty hose or something similar. Also adds additional biological filtration.

#6 The pads come in many different sizes as they are meant for the different models of AquaClear filters.

#7 and here is the best part I found... The pad is actually a perfect place for the shrimplets to feed. The porous, labyrinth texture is perfect for the shrimplets to find food and at the same time perfectly safe!

This is a highly recommended method to protect your shrimplets for ANY sized tank, and does not require you to use a sponge filter.

Go to your LFS or corporate death palace (petsmart, petco, etc.) and buy the foam, it is like $2.00 and see for yourself.

Aquaclear Filter Foam Pad. When you try it you will agree that this is the best method regardless of tank size.



Hope this helps. Thanks again BlueGuppyGirl!!!

-Ryan
 

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I use the AC sponge on my smaller AC filter. IMO, the holes look a bit big. I'm sure the smallest shrimplets/babies can manage their way in and probably through the sponge. On my Eheim canister filters, I like using the pre-filter sponge made for the mag drive pumps. It came with my mag drive pump and never used it and noticed it fit perfectly on my Eheim canister filter intakes. The holes are much smaller than the AC sponges. Plus they are made perfect for a filter intake, since they only have the hole in one side for the intake to fit in.

On my Emperor 280 and 400 filter intakes, I actually cut up a fish net and siliconed it over the intake. The fish net is very durable and can withstand scrubbings using an algae pad. The holes are also very small, so that any shrimplets cannot get through it. Here's what it looks like...
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I use the AC sponge on my smaller AC filter. IMO, the holes look a bit big. I'm sure the smallest shrimplets/babies can manage their way in and probably through the sponge.
Regular sponges meant specifically for sponge filters seem like they would definitely cause water restriction, especially on a larger tank. When I set up my 55 gallon I do not want the water flow to be restricted for many reasons.

I seriously doubt that the shrimplets would go all the way through the sponge. It is quite a ways to get to the actual intake from outside of the sponge. Baby shrimplets would not be inclined to try and trek through the maze of the sponge holes. The lack of water restriction is why I think this is a great method. Not only will your filter keep functioning great, but the suction will IMO deter the shrimplets from even sitting on the pad, let alone navigating through the sponge maze...

-Ryan
 

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I have Aquaclear filters on several tanks, and always find tiny MTS in the sponges when cleaning them. Even the smallest don't get very far into the sponge, and they're more determined than any shrimp...
 

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I have Aquaclear filters on several tanks, and always find tiny MTS in the sponges when cleaning them. Even the smallest don't get very far into the sponge, and they're more determined than any shrimp...
I second that. I have a 20ppi sponge over the AC30 intake, and the MTS find their way thgough it into the filter where they grow and often roll around the filter, making some scary noise in the middle of the night that can be heard in the bedroom upstairs.
 

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Regular sponges meant specifically for sponge filters seem like they would definitely cause water restriction, especially on a larger tank. When I set up my 55 gallon I do not want the water flow to be restricted for many reasons.

I seriously doubt that the shrimplets would go all the way through the sponge. It is quite a ways to get to the actual intake from outside of the sponge. Baby shrimplets would not be inclined to try and trek through the maze of the sponge holes. The lack of water restriction is why I think this is a great method. Not only will your filter keep functioning great, but the suction will IMO deter the shrimplets from even sitting on the pad, let alone navigating through the sponge maze...

-Ryan

The babbies can make it through those types of sponges. They will not make it though the elite replacement sponges. However if you were dead set on using it. The easiest way to cut out a hole is to freeze the sponge with water and drill a hole through it while it was frozen.
 

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I used to have AquaClear sponges as prefilters. Then I noticed that gunk would accumulate on the side of the sponge that's wedged against the aquarium glass. Not only gunk, but a lot of planaria would start hanging out on that side as well. So I started using Filter Max prefilters - which can be rotated away from the glass and can be positioned either vertically or laterally.

http://www.kensfish.com/ati.html

DJ
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
The babbies can make it through those types of sponges. They will not make it though the elite replacement sponges. However if you were dead set on using it. The easiest way to cut out a hole is to freeze the sponge with water and drill a hole through it while it was frozen.
Do the elite replacement sponges cause any water restriction? Water restriction is not good for my 10 gallon, it will mess things up...
 

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any sponge will restrict some. i use the same for my small shrimp tanks HOB filters (red sea nano or similar) and while flow is restricted a little, the filters still provide enough flow in the tanks. i just use a sharp knife to cut a cross in the top of the sponge and force the intake tube down into the cut. only need to clean them every couple of months or so.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I may end up switching to it when I get CRS. But for now I will just stick with the AC sponge.
 

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Do the elite replacement sponges cause any water restriction? Water restriction is not good for my 10 gallon, it will mess things up...
i noticed a SLIGHT restriction, nothing much at all. i actually usually turn down the flow a bit on my whisper for my 10 gallon. the flow is good with sponge on and full flow.

i noticed the flow does slow down after a cleaning gradually as stuff gets stuck up all in there, but the reduction in flow vs time, well by the time the reduction is noticable, its time for a water change, and at that time, i usually clean off the sponges.
 

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What works for me is to use an old carbon pouch (from an AquaClear power filter), cut the end off and dump out the carbon. Slip the bag over the intake siphon and rubberband it in place. Very fine mesh, so very effective, but virtually no effect on intake flow. Cheap, usually comes with every AC filter. Easy to rinse off. You can also buy these filter media bags separately.
 

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aquaclear sponges work for me

I have used the aquaclear sponges on the uptakes for years, and have had no problems. They work great on aquaclears (can't vouch for other brands of filters since I prefer the aquaclear for HOB types), I originally did it to prevent baby fish from being sucked up, and now use it on my 10 gallon cherry shrimp tank too.

It reduces the flow as it starts getting crudded up, but it doesn't effect flow too much when clean. The baby fish will eat the gunk off of the sponge as well as the shrimp/shrimplets. Have not had a planaria problem on the sponges, but maybe my feeding regume helps, I turn the filters off when I feed, for approx 10-20 minutes, and so no food particles gets sucked to the sponge that way.

Bonus-I do find my filter media in the filters stays cleaner with less leaves/crud in it, so it will last a bit longer (I partial change media in the filter as needed, not on a set schedule). & I always felt it was like having an additional filter (like a sponge filter) by having the sponge on the uptake.

Tried it on the rena filstar canister (XP3), and it bogged that down too much to the point of barely any flow, made the poor rena sound pretty scarey too. So I don't recomend you use it on a Rena.

Regards-Jackie
 

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How about these media bags? They're 800 microns and won't restrict the flow of the filter. It has ties on top so you just tie it around the intake's top.



Wood, post a pic of your intake sponge.
 

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It does slow it down. Anything that will stop the babbies from getting sucked up will eventually slow down the filte
I think that is gold for this thread. IF you are putting something that will keep out TINY 1-2mm shrimp fry you will pretty much automatically slow down your filter PERIOD!

How about these media bags? They're 800 microns and won't restrict the flow of the filter. It has ties on top so you just tie it around the intake's top.

Thats what I think I'm going to switch over to when I go to a canister filter... Suprised to hear XP3 doesn't do well with this type of thing.. I was going to probably get that:icon_roll I'll see...

Another option is to just get a surface skimmer intake and put some mesh on it.

Oh, and there are also sponge filters...:thumbsup:

-Andrew
 

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Someone has posted either here or on APC that those will decrease flow.
If you have a lot of crud in your tank, then anything will block up. Keep a clean tank and you won't have any problems with any of these suggested "pre-filters". I haven't had any flow restrictions so far.
 
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