Large canister build

Damascus

Plecostomus
MFK Member
Apr 19, 2020
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To significantly reduce ammonia and nitrate with plants like Pothos (or any terrestrial plant for that matter) the plants must greatly outweigh the stocking of fish.
I use plants in this matter, and when I set up the tank below 3 years ago, it never went thru a typical cycle, and still never shows detectable nitrate.
The tank 185 gals, the sump/refugium is a heavy planted 125 gal.
View attachment 1463289.
When the tank started, it was planted about a month before fish were added, and then I added only 25 mosquito fish another month before adding cichlids.
Ammonia and nitrite were never detectable, probably because the plants used any as soon as it was produced, same with nitrate.
To me, filters like pressurized canisters, are producers of more nitrate than they are worth.
I have two canisters, one came with the 180, one with the 125, they sit as paper weights.
I was able to use the media they came with in my sump.
Which is why I am hoping to solve a lot of my issues with this "sump extension ". The pothos don't solve everything but they help. It is likely that most of my excess bio load can be supported with a 44 gallon brute filled with media?
 

twentyleagues

Bronze Tier VIP
MFK Member
Apr 5, 2017
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Flint town!
I used a barrel for a sort of catch area for a few tanks running off of 1 single sump. I kind of made it a swirl filter which allowed large and some small waste to be separated before entering my main filtration. I drilled a hole in the very bottom of the barrel and installed a bulk head and ball valve which allowed for flushing. I could open the valve turn on the refill water supply and flush the barrel in a few minutes. I've also used it as a filter like you are planning. Put your media in "bags", I used the mesh that goes over yard drain tubes comes in a 25 or 50' role. You can get it at home Depot, tie a knot in it and zip tie it behind the knot. That way you can easily rinse your media if you need to. Ofcoarse if you use good Mechanical filtration before it shouldn't be an issue. I'd also not plumb it from the bottom if you can.
20190316_212225.jpg
"Swirl" filter
 

fishdance

Peacock Bass
MFK Member
Jan 30, 2007
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Media bags are good as contingency.

I placed an air manifold of PVC pipe at the bottom under the larva rock and use a leaf blower to AIR STIR the filter. Then drain the dirty water to waste. No need to lift out media to clean.
 
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Damascus

Plecostomus
MFK Member
Apr 19, 2020
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Media bags are good as contingency.

I placed an air manifold of PVC pipe at the bottom under the larva rock and use a leaf blower to AIR STIR the filter. Then drain the dirty water to waste. No need to lift out media to clean.
I like this idea a lot. Maybe I can figure how to use an air compressor instead of a leaf blower
 

Ulu

Redtail Catfish
MFK Member
Dec 13, 2018
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The Sunny San Joaquin
93D3E1D1-CB4D-498A-8E67-EC1A18BE4D00.jpeg
I did this but I wanted it insulated, because it’s outdoors in the winter. I put a 32 gallon Brute inside of a 44 gallon & shot spray foam in between them. I had to cut the handles off. There’s a thread about this in the DIY room.

This services an indoor/outdoor cascade system with 3 glass aquariums.
064A1A96-21D2-4BA4-8072-3D453ECF133D.jpeg
this is the outdoor view now, but I have screen cloth over the aquariums to cut down on the algae growth during the summer.

I am overflowing 2 tanks into two 2” pipes, which go to the bottom of the can. The exit below a false floor full of holes, with bags of various aged media, and above that is a bed of filter floss with some perforated plastic to retain it.

I used a regular plastic overflow pipe of 2 inches, to the 30g pump chamber. It dumps thru a 7 inch sock before it gets to the return pumps.

I also have a modest dual air pump which runs two air stones below the “floor” and constantly aerates the system.

What I do not have is a bottom drain. I was afraid my dogs will chew the plastic.

When I want to flush out the sump, I pull the floss, stick a hose down in the 2” inflow pipe to the bottom, and blow up everything out the overflow. That basically runs across my concrete patio into a fake creek which feeds the lawn.
 

DRUKENMUNKY

Plecostomus
MFK Member
Dec 25, 2018
164
234
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Imo if u have issues with ammonia this extension of your sump will definitely help because of the added media but with the debris build up I can see happening without constant maintenance added to the extra nitrate from the new media....I would think your nitrate is gonna go higher. I have used those brute trash cans in the past and even though are huge in volume it is a pain to clean. That's just my opinion tho...good luck with the project
 

robmcd

Redtail Catfish
MFK Member
Jan 19, 2007
3,393
589
150
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Laguna Beach
View attachment 1463681
I did this but I wanted it insulated, because it’s outdoors in the winter. I put a 32 gallon Brute inside of a 44 gallon & shot spray foam in between them. I had to cut the handles off. There’s a thread about this in the DIY room.

This services an indoor/outdoor cascade system with 3 glass aquariums.
View attachment 1463682
this is the outdoor view now, but I have screen cloth over the aquariums to cut down on the algae growth during the summer.

I am overflowing 2 tanks into two 2” pipes, which go to the bottom of the can. The exit below a false floor full of holes, with bags of various aged media, and above that is a bed of filter floss with some perforated plastic to retain it.

I used a regular plastic overflow pipe of 2 inches, to the 30g pump chamber. It dumps thru a 7 inch sock before it gets to the return pumps.

I also have a modest dual air pump which runs two air stones below the “floor” and constantly aerates the system.

What I do not have is a bottom drain. I was afraid my dogs will chew the plastic.

When I want to flush out the sump, I pull the floss, stick a hose down in the 2” inflow pipe to the bottom, and blow up everything out the overflow. That basically runs across my concrete patio into a fake creek which feeds the lawn.
 
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Ulu

Redtail Catfish
MFK Member
Dec 13, 2018
1,695
2,297
154
The Sunny San Joaquin
Thanks Rob.

Something I didn't mention is that I am now considering that the Brute should really be converted to a moving media filter.

And, indeed, the can is not the easiest to clean. This is all still very much a work in progress.
 
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