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What type of filter is it???
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Grungefreek
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Joined: 15 Jun 2003
Location: Newcastle, Australia

PostPosted: 2003.06.15(Sun)23:27    Post subject: What type of filter is it??? Reply with quote

Hi all,
I'm am in the process of making a fish tank and am deciding on a filter for it. As a bit of a handy person I want to try and make the filter system myself. the problem is that I don't know the name of the one one I want to build. The one I wish to make consists of a plate that sits under the gravel, through which water from the tank is drawn through and taken outside of the tank and then to the actual filter which just consists of a rotating boom from which the water is expelled through variuos filter materials (this is called a trickle filter?). The problem is that I have never seen one of these set up and I don't know how the under gravel plate
works or what it looks like, so as I don't now the name of this sytem I can't serach for it for plans. If someone who has made or owns one of these filter systems could detail to me how the under gravel plate works and looks like I would be most grateful.
thanks everyone Smile
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dan
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Joined: 16 Feb 2003

PostPosted: 2003.06.16(Mon)16:53    Post subject: Reply with quote

I would recomend any other filter than an undergravel Just put a sponge on the end of tube that runs to your wet dry filter. then your sponge on it acts like your prefilter and wash that out every so often. under gravels are harder to clean and keep clean, and not compatable if you ever want a planted tank, which IMO is the only way to go for extra filtration,and decoration.
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Grungefreek
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Joined: 15 Jun 2003
Location: Newcastle, Australia

PostPosted: 2003.06.16(Mon)19:03    Post subject: Reply with quote

OK thanks for the reply. Now maybe I havent described my design thorough enough. With your comments on this filter being hard to clean, well this filter should require no in tank maintenance. See the plate never actually gets anything trapped under it for any length of time as with a normal under gravel filter. OK so the plate that sits under the gravel is connected to PVC piping (min 3cm dia), the water above the gravel is drawn through the gravel, under the plate and then out of the pVC pipe which is then connected to the boom trickle filter system. So as you can see I will pretty much not have to touch anything in the tank as the pvc pipe is large enough not to clog and all wastes will be drawn out from under the plate so under the plate will not need cleaning. Cleaning the trickle system should also be a breeze as the actual filter medium is housed within a bucket of some description outside the tank with the water passing down through the medium to the bottom of the bucket and then recycled back to the tank. So hopefully you get a clearer picture of how this system works. Now for the plants, well I don't really see too much problem with it. Seeing as there will be a constant water movement which draws water past the roots of the plants there should be no problem with the amounts of ions in contact with their root systems as long as water is changed regularily as with most tanks. And then theres still the problem of what the actual under gravel plate looks like. Oh well tell me your thoughts etc its all apreciated thanks
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Badfrog
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Joined: 19 Mar 2003
Location: Deep inside my own mind

PostPosted: 2003.06.17(Tue)13:55    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm not sure I remember hearing about anything similar to this design before. Most trickle filters operate through some kind of over-the-side/plumbed-in overflow arrangement, IIRC.

It sounds like you are going to draw water through the tank's substrate, out the bottom, and then filter it. If I've got the gist of your idea, I can see two problems with this plan, both of which have to do with how you're getting water out of the tank:

1) By drawing water THRU the gravel into your filter, you'll wind up trapping most of the dirt IN the gravel (mecahnical filtration). Bacteria will inevitably colonize the gravel and that'll be the site of most of your biological filtration. So far so good, but that doesn't leave much for the rest of your filter to do (unless you're going to do denitrification or a lot of chemical filtration, but it doesn't sound like your design will do either.) What you'll have is an expensive, high-powered undergravel filter with all the problems that come with those.

2) With an outlet in the bottom of the tank, the water is going to drain out *awfully dang fast* and will probably drain the tank in a span of a few minutes, unless this tank is of gargantuan proportions. What happens when the power goes out?
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Grungefreek
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Joined: 15 Jun 2003
Location: Newcastle, Australia

PostPosted: 2003.06.17(Tue)18:56    Post subject: Reply with quote

hmm, OK your on the track but not quite. In my design, instead of the wastes trapped under the UGF plate, they are drawn out through the PVC pipe which is glued into the UGF plate so as to draw the stuff under the plate out, over the back of the tank (not through a hole in the bottom) to the trickle filter system. This will be powered by some form of pump, not sure what type yet and if the power goes out, well it doesn't matter. Then once filtered, the water will be pumped back into the tank, a continuous system.
OK hope now you all get it. Overall I just want to save myself heaps of time by not having to vacuum the tank or anything else to get all the crap that accumulates within the gravel of the tank.

OK now for those who worry bout the biological breakdown of materials and whatever within the tank. As you stated Badfrog, not all wastes will be drawn from the gravel under the plate, some will remain. So bacteria will have food in which to process, no worries there. I'm not going to have the water turing out mega litres per day. Ill see what pumps there are and calculate a few things to determine the force required to draw sufficient wastes through the gravel (this is not very fine gravel, so there will be fairly large inter particulate pores which makes it easier to draw water and wastes through).

Overall this sytem won't be expensive as it just doesn't have that many moving part. PVC's cheap, the trickle system is made out of a bucket, pvc piping and filter medium, then just tubing to get the water in and out of it. The plate for under the gravel, well don't know what this will look like or how much it would cost as this was the initial question I asked, but so far no one seems to have seen this setup before.

OK thanks for your replys, see how we go with this explaination. The real problem I'm having is not how the rest of the filter works, just the plate. I just want to know how the I can make sure the water drawn through the gravel covers the whole tank and doesn't just draw in the wastes taht are very close to the exit pipe. Maybe ill have to an investigation on how those ordinary UGF plates work and modify one.
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Badfrog
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Joined: 19 Mar 2003
Location: Deep inside my own mind

PostPosted: 2003.06.18(Wed)12:47    Post subject: Reply with quote

OK, now I understand a little better what you're doing, but.. it still sounds like a glorified UGF to me, but maybe I'm missing something. Let us know how it works out.
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ThirstyFish
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Joined: 07 Mar 2003
Location: Michigan

PostPosted: 2003.06.18(Wed)15:03    Post subject: Reply with quote

So basically you wana make a UGF that instead of the powerhead circulating right back into the tank, its pumps it out to a wet/dry or sump system?
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Grungefreek
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Joined: 15 Jun 2003
Location: Newcastle, Australia

PostPosted: 2003.06.19(Thu)2:20    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yep Thirstyfish, Its pretty much a UGF that doesn't trap the wastes under the plate and not sure what you mean by the way of wet/dry sump. I'm not all that experienced in the ways of aquariums, all I know is that I have had them before and my pet hate is cleaning them with vacuums or cleaning under the actual UGF plate and if I get this to work, all I do is clean the filter medium in the bucket below the tank and its done. Some may take joy in cleaning out their tanks, I hate it so I'm finding ways to minimise the time it takes to do it.
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uLtRa
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Joined: 11 Apr 2003
Location: Southend, UK

PostPosted: 2003.06.19(Thu)3:10    Post subject: Reply with quote

OK I get it now! So, what filtration are you having in the sump?Is it going to be completely DIY?
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Grungefreek
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Joined: 15 Jun 2003
Location: Newcastle, Australia

PostPosted: 2003.06.19(Thu)3:51    Post subject: Reply with quote

OK still don't know what is meant by sump. The filter is just going to be a bucket like a platerers bucket, you know bout 25 litres I think they are. Ill just put a plate that keeps the filter medium bout 5 inches off the bottom of the bucket for the water to drain, a hole in the side of the bucket at the bottom will have rubber tubing glued into it so water can be pumped back into the tank after filtering. At the top is just a rotating boom, havent worked how that will work as per yet. This will be made of PVC pipe with holes drilled in each side of the pivot at an angle as to cause the spinning motion (don't we all love pysics) . yeah so the water comes out of the tank into the boom, sprayed out, moves via gravity through the filter medium (probably just some pillow stuffing which is essentially the same as the that wool you put in those little corner filter things) and then into the bottom where the cycle goes again. Easy if it works. I actually saw a similar system set up at this aquarium place the other day and it looked similar to what I was thinking. It looked all hand made and was fully operational so will have to investigate that further with the owners I dare say. thanks to everyone who replyed. If I find out the shops design and egt thier opinions ill post it for anyone interested.
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