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Hawkgirl
04-23-2012, 11:27 AM
I've been an aquarium hobbyist for many years. I have experience with both salt water and fresh water fish. I currently have an aggressive tank of African cichlids. They are the more colorful of the fresh water fish. I've had problems with loud filter lately and trying to address it.

Does anyone here keep aquariums?

Artois
04-23-2012, 04:26 PM
At one time I had a beautiful 180 gallon reef (lps/softy) in my living room, a 300 gallon with a leopard and bonnet head shark in the basement, and another 90 gallon mixed reef in my dining room. I've had a few others since than, from small kitchen and desktop nano reefs on up. Oddly enough, I've never had a freshwater aquarium. Although one day I would like to test my patience with a planted freshwater or brackish tank. Quite honestly though, I'm a bit burnt out on the upkeep and fretting about them while on vacation. I took my last aquarium down last year and honestly, it's a bit of a relief to not have one.

Hawkgirl
04-23-2012, 10:23 PM
I took my last aquarium down last year and honestly, it's a bit of a relief to not have one.

I understand. With the filter problems I've been having as of late, I sometimes feel like doing the same thing...but I'd feel bad for my africans, as I've raised them since they were tiny and they are about 7 inches now.


Never was adventurous enough for a reef tank..but I kept saltwater fish like tangs and triggers and some angel fish. They don't have a long shelf life and they are expensive as hell...so I've been doing fresh for a while now. Africans also have funny personalities...if you can believe fish have personalities.

Artois
04-24-2012, 12:58 PM
I understand. With the filter problems I've been having as of late, I sometimes feel like doing the same thing...but I'd feel bad for my africans, as I've raised them since they were tiny and they are about 7 inches now.


Never was adventurous enough for a reef tank..but I kept saltwater fish like tangs and triggers and some angel fish. They don't have a long shelf life and they are expensive as hell...so I've been doing fresh for a while now. Africans also have funny personalities...if you can believe fish have personalities.

Wow, congrats on raising them to such healthy sizes! I love watching them grow and they absolutely have personalities! What issues are you having with your filters? What are you running?

I actually think reef tanks are fairly simple albeit a pricey hobby in it's self, until you get into the SPS and really exotic corals - which than it becomes a career. Especially now with how much the hobby has grown in knowledge and technology over the past decade. I was fortunate enough to have never lost a tang and had many grow from little guys to well, I had a unicorn tang actually outgrow the aquarium. Never had any triggers though, I was always to nervous for all of my little clown gobies, watchmen, and mandarins for one of them.

Hawkgirl
04-24-2012, 04:57 PM
Wow, congrats on raising them to such healthy sizes! I love watching them grow and they absolutely have personalities! What issues are you having with your filters? What are you running?

I actually think reef tanks are fairly simple albeit a pricey hobby in it's self, until you get into the SPS and really exotic corals - which than it becomes a career. Especially now with how much the hobby has grown in knowledge and technology over the past decade. I was fortunate enough to have never lost a tang and had many grow from little guys to well, I had a unicorn tang actually outgrow the aquarium. Never had any triggers though, I was always to nervous for all of my little clown gobies, watchmen, and mandarins for one of them.

Have a small tank so only running a Marineland penguin 200. My brother came over today and he played with the intake valve and it's a little better. It has a fast bio wheel so I will always hear the waterfall sound, which is fine...but there may be an issue with the valve connector, if it's too tight or not tight enough it has a buzzing sound that's annoying. Just got this filter this weekend.

The one prior was also a Marineland, but a 280, worked good for a year, then a loud clanking noise after a water change.
Which filters have you used?

Artois
04-24-2012, 09:35 PM
Have a small tank so only running a Marineland penguin 200. My brother came over today and he played with the intake valve and it's a little better. It has a fast bio wheel so I will always hear the waterfall sound, which is fine...but there may be an issue with the valve connector, if it's too tight or not tight enough it has a buzzing sound that's annoying. Just got this filter this weekend.

The one prior was also a Marineland, but a 280, worked good for a year, then a loud clanking noise after a water change.
Which filters have you used?

Those are perfectly fine power filters. They really do have a tendency to become quirky like that though, especially as water levels fluctuate or even a slight coating of algae or deitrus build up forms on them. It's a bit of a pain but you can sometimes salvage those pumps when they get noisy like that by disassembling the impeller ang giving it a vinegar bath. I used to do that monthly to most of my pumps as a preventive measure, it was a pain.

My first aquarium was a 90 gallon reef filtered with a Skilter 400 power filter (similar to yours), a Marineland magnum carbon canister with dual bio wheels, a small uv sterilizer, and what really saved me... in excess of 100 pounds of premium Fiji live rock.

I've tried a variety of filtering methods with different setups, it's amazing how sw has progressed with that. My last aquarium was a 92 gallon corner tank. Live sand bed with an anaerobic plenum, around 100 pounds of live rock, closed loop pumps for extra circulation, Vortech MP pumps for tidal simulation on a controller, built in overflow piped through a wall into a nearby closet to a 75 gallon sump, massive crazy protein skimmer, geo carbon reactor, phosphate reactor, uv sterilizer, a large refugium filled with pods & macro algae, automatic reverse osmosis top off, Metal halide lighting for the display tank, power compact light over the refugium for good algae growth and ph balancing, dual medical dosing pumps, and just about everything was computer controlled!

Hawkgirl
04-24-2012, 09:45 PM
Those are perfectly fine power filters. They really do have a tendency to become quirky like that though, especially as water levels fluctuate or even a slight coating of algae or deitrus build up forms on them. It's a bit of a pain but you can sometimes salvage those pumps when they get noisy like that by disassembling the impeller ang giving it a vinegar bath. I used to do that monthly to most of my pumps as a preventive measure, it was a pain.

My first aquarium was a 90 gallon reef filtered with a Skilter 400 power filter (similar to yours), a Marineland magnum carbon canister with dual bio wheels, a small uv sterilizer, and what really saved me... in excess of 100 pounds of premium Fiji live rock.

I've tried a variety of filtering methods with different setups, it's amazing how sw has progressed with that. My last aquarium was a 92 gallon corner tank. Live sand bed with an anaerobic plenum, around 100 pounds of live rock, closed loop pumps for extra circulation, Vortech MP pumps for tidal simulation on a controller, built in overflow piped through a wall into a nearby closet to a 75 gallon sump, massive crazy protein skimmer, geo carbon reactor, phosphate reactor, uv sterilizer, a large refugium filled with pods & macro algae, automatic reverse osmosis top off, Metal halide lighting for the display tank, power compact light over the refugium for good algae growth and ph balancing, dual medical dosing pumps, and just about everything was computer controlled!

Holy crap, that's a lot of machinery...lol My brother had a 400 gallon salt water tank when he was single...lol...It took up nearly the whole wall in his living room. I'm definitely a light weight compared to you both.lol

Hawkgirl
04-24-2012, 09:46 PM
I'll try the vinegar trick this weekend.

Artois
04-24-2012, 10:09 PM
Holy crap, that's a lot of machinery...lol My brother had a 400 gallon salt water tank when he was single...lol...It took up nearly the whole wall in his living room. I'm definitely a light weight compared to you both.lol

Honestly I've had success though with no filtration what so ever, other than live rock (natural filtration) and weekly 10% water changes. Generally though I really tried to have good protein skimmers and a phosphate reactor as well. Well I went a bit overboard with gear and computer controllers on a mere 26 gallon nano once too...

Ha, I would have loved to have seen your brothers setup back than!


I'll try the vinegar trick this weekend.

It was a trick to breakup the calcium deposits that tended to form in reefs with calcium reactors or dosing. It works great at cleaning algae and other stuff though on pumps/impellers and is safe as long as you rinse it off well.

Apache
04-24-2012, 10:53 PM
Live rock? Are you talking undergravel filtration?

I kept community freshwater tanks for about 25 years, been through many systems. I swear by the undergravel filters and the 10% weekly changes.

The vinegar washing of accessories is by far the best and cheapest way to keep things clean.

Artois
04-24-2012, 11:19 PM
Live rock? Are you talking undergravel filtration?

I kept community freshwater tanks for about 25 years, been through many systems. I swear by the undergravel filters and the 10% weekly changes.

The vinegar washing of accessories is by far the best and cheapest way to keep things clean.

Nope. For saltwater, under gravel/crushed coral filtration has been out of style for over a decade. Even if you vacuum it weekly you'll experience deitrus and nitrate buildup. Corals and a good number of saltwater fish really struggle to thrive under those conditions.

I'm referring to actual broken rocks gathered from actual reefs in foreign countries. Like this: http://premiumaquatics.com/aquatic-supply/Liverock.html

It's really porous and filled with beneficial bacteria that will actually filter your water through the nitrogen cycle. Additionally it often brings a host of hitchhikers to your aquarium. Small Copepods (essentially aquatic bugs that fish love), star fish, worms, sponges , corals, crabs, and even more exotic surprises... Not always good though. It's also usually covered in colorful coralline algae, the hard colorful (typically blue) crust that covers most things in a tropical reef.

Apache
04-24-2012, 11:47 PM
Nope. For saltwater, under gravel/crushed coral filtration has been out of style for over a decade. Even if you vacuum it weekly you'll experience deitrus and nitrate buildup. Corals and a good number of saltwater fish really struggle to thrive under those conditions.

I'm referring to actual broken rocks gathered from actual reefs in foreign countries. Like this: http://premiumaquatics.com/aquatic-supply/Liverock.html

It's really porous and filled with beneficial bacteria that will actually filter your water through the nitrogen cycle. Additionally it often brings a host of hitchhikers to your aquarium. Small Copepods (essentially aquatic bugs that fish love), star fish, worms, sponges , corals, crabs, and even more exotic surprises... Not always good though. It's also usually covered in colorful coralline algae, the hard colorful (typically blue) crust that covers most things in a tropical reef.

Heh. No wonder I never heard of it, I didn't have the guts to attempt saltwater tanks :friendly_wink: I never ran into the problems with undergravel filtration that you mentioned. maybe it was the way I cleaned my tank...

Artois
04-25-2012, 12:02 AM
Heh. No wonder I never heard of it, I didn't have the guts to attempt saltwater tanks :friendly_wink: I never ran into the problems with undergravel filtration that you mentioned. maybe it was the way I cleaned my tank...

It's perfectly fine for freshwater and even doable, albeit not advisable, for some salt water fish. Although its still a good idea to vacuum the deitrus out regularly. A lot of saltwater critters are just too susceptible to any nitrate readings to thrive with one though, even when at barely detectable levels - without the real pricey test kits.