Transferring fish to new tank - what kind of cycling is needed? - Page 2 - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #11 of 18 Old 05-08-2012, 01:43 PM Thread Starter
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Beautiful tanks! I checked out the Fluval U series, and unfortunately it looks like they only go up to 65g. Unless there's another underwater filter out there that can do 90 or 110g, I think I'll be stuck with HOB's. (Which honestly isn't a big problem to me, as long as the low water flow setting would be agreeable with plants.)

Black pool filter sand is exactly what I was going to buy - I love the green on black look. But I'll check out the Quikrete mix. They look great in your tanks too.
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post #12 of 18 Old 05-08-2012, 02:34 PM
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The lowest flow setting helps, but is not enough if you want to keep floating plants, or plants in the vincinity of the filter exhaust. You have to realise these filters flow quite a lot of water, and simply dump it back in the tank. I also find my fluval c3 quite noisy on the lowest flow setting, since there is not a lot of water on top of the impeller in this situation.

It's far from impossible to use a HOB in a planted tank, my 20g and my 10g are doing fine with it, but I find it worthwile to explore other options since you have to buy some sort of filter anyway.

I don't know how big they are, but 2x fluval u4 would provide adequate filtration for your tank.
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post #13 of 18 Old 05-08-2012, 05:00 PM Thread Starter
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You know that, that's actually a great idea. I'd love to have something quieter than my Emperor 400 which sounds like a bad air conditioning unit in a cheap motel. And two of these U4's would be enough filtration for the community I have and plan to add to. Only question I have is would two of these create too much water movement for a 90g planted tank?
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post #14 of 18 Old 05-08-2012, 05:47 PM
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If their exhaust is directional, you can point it at the side glass and that will disperse it.
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post #15 of 18 Old 05-08-2012, 06:14 PM Thread Starter
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I love this forum! Really helping me put this together. Now I'm really leaning towards a 90g tank (still unsure about bowfront vs. rectangle, but I'm sure after days of obsessing I'll figure it out), two Fluval U4 in-water filters, black pool filter sand, and lots of beautiful plants :) One more question while I'm at it: Are aerators not recommended in planted tanks?
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post #16 of 18 Old 05-08-2012, 07:08 PM
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With plants, I would not have two filters but just the one Fluval U4. I realize it is rated for slightly smaller tanks than a 90g, but these ratings are intended as general and assume "average" tanks which will have no plants and probably too many fish.

You will read many natural planted tank authors suggesting no filter at all. I have tried this. I prefer some filtration primarily to keep the water moving gently (this has benefits for plants and fish) and mechanical for removal of particulate matter. So the U4 would work in this situation.

You also want a specific flow in the tank, from left to right or right to left. The benefit of this is creating a natural stream for the fish, but also it ensures good circulation of nutrients, temperature, etc. and will be better at removing particles. Filter currents in opposition to each other would confuse the fishies. Bit tongue in cheek with this last sentence...but in all my tanks the fish face the same direction and it is always into the filter stream. It is what they naturally expect.


Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
Vancouver, BC, Canada

The aquarist is one who must learn the ways of the biologist, the chemist, and the veterinarian. [unknown source]

Something we all need to remember: The fish you've acquired was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If you’re going to take it under your wing then you’re responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. [Nathan Hill in PFK]
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post #17 of 18 Old 05-08-2012, 07:08 PM
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In a planted tank, you want to maximise CO2. Generally, an established tank will produce CO2 from all the biological activity. The level in the water is thus higher than the normal equilibrum that would form. Since plants require C02 as a nutriment, you want to minimise agitation so you can keep this CO2 in the water. In fact, some people go to a "high tech" setup and inject C02 in the water, you can research this if you want, but keep in mind it is expensive and more labor intensive than a normal, "low tech" setup. The beauty of your proposed setup, with internal filters, is that you would be able to go "high tech" in the future, if you want, since you keep agitation to a minimum.

Please don't hesitate de report back on your setup when you get it running, I am very interested in the performance of these U4 filters.

Also, as food for tought, remember that bowfront tank will distord your view. It's not much, but it's noticeable in my 26g bow.
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post #18 of 18 Old 05-11-2012, 02:52 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks Boise. After much deliberation I made the decision to get the 90t tank and two Fluval U4's. Knowing that I can position them in a way that won't cause a lot of crazy turbulence, and their silent operation finally won me over. The main decision was knowing that I plan to have a decent stock of fish in the new tank and will need the mechanical filtration. Just going with one worried me about proper filtration in a 90g, even with plants. Time will tell if this was the right choice.

I've got a lot of planning to do in terms of setting up and stocking the new tank - the hardest part now will be deciding whether to keep some of my current fish, or start completely over. Either way, I'll start a new thread here after I've got the new tank up and active!
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