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Hair-brained DIY filter
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diademhill
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Joined: 18 Apr 2007

PostPosted: 2009.02.04(Wed)10:49    Post subject: Reply with quote

The terracotta is just a container but the weight helps and moss or algae will grow on it better than on plastic.

You can use the concept in a plastic tub.
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Sad Heart
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Joined: 24 Jan 2009
Location: Sioux Falls, SD - USA

PostPosted: 2009.02.04(Wed)11:01    Post subject: Reply with quote

OK!

Can you use natural hardwood charcoal to filter water or does it have to be activated to work?
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diademhill
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Joined: 18 Apr 2007

PostPosted: 2009.02.04(Wed)11:25    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sad Heart wrote:
OK!

Can you use natural hardwood charcoal to filter water or does it have to be activated to work?

No, only the activated will remove dyes and toxins and then only for a limited time. It isn't needed in most tanks.
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Sad Heart
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Joined: 24 Jan 2009
Location: Sioux Falls, SD - USA

PostPosted: 2009.02.05(Thu)9:57    Post subject: Reply with quote

I would like Apistos and my water is too hard for them.
Our water softener had NO salt in it, when I filled the tank. And I'm considering either changing the water or softening what's already in there.

Charcoal wouldn't make the water soft. Would it?

I'm trying to cycle the tank since it's filled...so if the water is hard and it cycles will changing the water WITH soft water kill the bacteria?


Sorry for all the questions! There are probably better topics for them.
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diademhill
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Joined: 18 Apr 2007

PostPosted: 2009.02.05(Thu)10:15    Post subject: Reply with quote

Don't use water from a domestic softener in an aquarium.

If you want to soften water you need a full set of test kits for Gh & KH as well as pH and need to look into using RO water as a percentage of each water change.

Charcoal won't make the water soft.

If you do a fishless cycle you can do a water change at the end with part RO water but a sudden drastic change of hardness can damage the filter.
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Sad Heart
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Joined: 24 Jan 2009
Location: Sioux Falls, SD - USA

PostPosted: 2009.02.05(Thu)12:10    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have test results of

pH 7.2
Alkalinity 80mg/L
Hardness of 150mg/L (these are from PetSmart)

What part of the filter will get damaged? The pot break?....the media will release the bacteria??
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diademhill
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PostPosted: 2009.02.05(Thu)12:42    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sudden changes can damage the working part of the filter - the bacteria.
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Sad Heart
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Joined: 24 Jan 2009
Location: Sioux Falls, SD - USA

PostPosted: 2009.02.06(Fri)10:13    Post subject: Reply with quote

I melted snow. Filtered it through coffee filters and tested it. It had almost no hardness, fairly acidic and a little nitrate & nitrite.

It was about 3L. I added some Jungle Start Right. Removed that amount from the tank and added the water. I tested it later and it showed no change.

Is the snow water a bad idea? Did the Start Right ruin/help the soft water?

Also, I'm noticing a darkening in color of the terra cotta pot.
I'm also using landscaping gravel for ponds. I'm concerned it may be adding to the hardness of the water.

Should I start over?
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suebe333
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Joined: 12 Mar 2009

PostPosted: 2009.03.12(Thu)12:36    Post subject: Reply with quote

this sounds soooo cool ,,, someone let me know if it is working good Smile
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Sad Heart
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Joined: 24 Jan 2009
Location: Sioux Falls, SD - USA

PostPosted: 2009.03.12(Thu)15:49    Post subject: Reply with quote

The media was batting sold as Pillow Stuffing. Before I changed the substrate to sand, I removed the media and it was rust colored. It works but I have no idea what the filtration rate was or how the bacteria was doing. I would assume it would start growing from the edge of the pot and grow outward.
If I had more time to experiment, I would. But with the changes I've gone a couple months with an empty tank and no progress. I'd just like to move in the right direction.

Thank you for the compliment. I think it's cool too, when you can make something work with your own mind and a few simple objects.
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