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Robbo89

Custom Aquarium Filtration and Assistance

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Hey everyone,

I am currently having renovations done and in the process getting a 6x2x3 (LWH) tank installed within a wall.

Need some help with filtration options...

Sump was my initial plan, maybe a refugium but thinking I could plumb it within the wall and hide it away in the cabinet underneath.

What size sump would I need?

Also I'm planning for discus, is there anything I need to know that they are specific to regarding filtration?

And can anyone recommend any places/people to get custom built aquariums in Brisbane?

Thanks heaps, Alex.

Edited by Robbo89
typo
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firstly im unsure why you would want a refugium in a discus tank, quite unnecessary really.

i would advise that you go for about a four foot sump, is always a safe start.

with discus there is nothing specific at all needed for filtration, just some good biological filtration and your away.

there is the side where you can start into keeping your discus in RO water, but if you ask me thats just pedantic.

Really its down to personal preference, you could even run a large canister (fx5 etc)

if you want to do a sump, then go for it.

you can definatly hold a lot more media in a sump, and theres the opportunity of making a moving bed chamber if that floats your boat.

there is quite a few options you could take

i dont know of any places in brisbane, but i know down at aquariums alive they have their own tank builder there, can pretty much make any tank you want

hit them up and im sure they could give you a price :)

HTH

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Stuff the refugium go the sump .as big as you can its water quality that matters and make sure that your tank is cycled properly . Discus will sulk and become temperamental if the water quality is sh t . I wouldnt recommend putting driftwood with pointy bits hanging off it as they can get spooked and injure themselves, but there should be some in there.having too large a sump and media is better than too small . Discus can be finnicky but well worth the effort , they can be kept in normal tap water and its not til you get to wild caughts and heckles that you need to be able to keep a constant ph of around 6 most or the tank raised will do just fine , ask the breeder that you purchase them off what his perameters are and try to mimic them .i prefer breeder bred fish to lfs as you can see the parents usually and can gauge what the offspring could turn out like and they havent been bounced all around the globe and in 3 or 4 different water conditions in the few weeks before your purchase and if the breeder is serious has done his best to eradicate fluke and worms from his stock before selling them . Cant say the same for the lfs.i know you didnt ask all these questions but i thought id chuck them in anyway.

Are you going single species or a community style tank cos theres a heap of no nos for compatibility and some real good ones

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As billfish said buy off a breeder if possible, or a very well renowned pet shop. And remember discus don't like high flow so make sure you haven't got water blasting at them. Good luck with your venture, and remember plenty of updates :)

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Ok my bad i thought that a refugium was only used in salt water setups as a place to keep benaficial bacteria in the form of live rock and shrimp and stuff where you would run lights when your tank light was off to stop ph variation from co2

you could add another partition to your sump and add plants like valis, anubius, java moss to it to help your tank along the way sort of like a s w refugium couldnt put any shrimp in though they cant handle the heay that discus like ,comments on my interpritation of a refugium?

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Awesome I really appreciate all the input guys! Few questions

What is the benefit of going with twin canisters? Cheaper I assume but that isn't too much of a concern for me at the moment.

I really know next to nothing about refugiums and not a whole lot about sumps, I just figured in my head a sump would be the best way to go.

Does running twin canisters mean alot more water changes than a sump? I have heard of a Discus tank in America that ran of a refugium with perfect conditions for months and minimal maintenance. But that could be wrong...

Just called around and got some quotes and the 900 high is causing a huge (maybe 250%) increase in costs because it requires 15mm glass.

So I'm more likely to drop that back to 800 high and save alot on the tank.

So far MaryAnnes aquariums seem the best option for me, they quoted $780 for the 800 high tank and suggested a discount if I also bought a 4 ft sump from them too.

As for the fish, I'd like to keep a large school of colourful discus as the primary fish, and stock around their parameters so maybe cardinals, blue rams and some sort of plec?

Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated! I'l throw up some pictures as soon as I have something to take a photo of ;)

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A custom built sump is always a solid option.

Why do I reccomend twin canisters?

Well redundancy and power efficiency are 2 reasons.

They also make it easy to relocate the tank, rather than having to cut plumbing.

And they are easy to clean....... although sumps have the advantage on doing a quick dacron swap/sock clean.

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Do you have a source of pure water?

RO or Tank water?

I suggest discus will do best in soft water.....Brisbane tap water is too hard

I'd rather have 2 canisters.....clean one every month

The more regular the water changes the better.....;)

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Do you have a source of pure water?

RO or Tank water?

I suggest discus will do best in soft water.....Brisbane tap water is too hard

I'd rather have 2 canisters.....clean one every month

The more regular the water changes the better.....;)

Discus definitely prefer and do better in soft water ,i was meaning that there is some around that have been kept in tap ph type water and will survive all be it they will not do any where near as well as ones kept in softer ,lower ph water .

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So basically running twin canisters would be quieter?

It will be all sealed away with the cabinet so I hope running a sump pump wouldn't be too bad...

I feel inclined as to head the sump way just because I can get it custom made by Dennison at the same time, and it has a much greater biological surface area.

Also because the tank is being inbuilt within a wall, if I ever come to trying to move it the job will be so big anyway that cutting plumbing in the grand scheme of things should just be minor.

I do not have any access to RO water, but I know of a few very local Discus breeders, so they must have some way of correcting their water, right?

Can water be artificially 'softened', or should I rule Discus out of my plans? :(

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Ahh, the pro's/ cons of canister vs the sump!

Whos got the popcorn? :boxing:

Personally, i like the simplicity and space saving that a canister has. But in saying that, a well setup

sump can run with minimal maintenance and just as reliable! There are a few problems... like flooding

the house, and if its inside a wall that might be more of a problem? With both of them thou, make sure

you fill them with good media!

And for lighting, depends if you want to plant the tank or not. LED will save in the longrun, have alook

at some of the LED spotlights off ebay (10-50watt maybe?)

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So basically running twin canisters would be quieter?

It will be all sealed away with the cabinet so I hope running a sump pump wouldn't be too bad...

I feel inclined as to head the sump way just because I can get it custom made by Dennison at the same time, and it has a much greater biological surface area.

Also because the tank is being inbuilt within a wall, if I ever come to trying to move it the job will be so big anyway that cutting plumbing in the grand scheme of things should just be minor.

I do not have any access to RO water, but I know of a few very local Discus breeders, so they must have some way of correcting their water, right?

Can water be artificially 'softened', or should I rule Discus out of my plans? :(

Water can be artificially softened

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If u don't massively overstock and/or overfeed the amount of media in just one fx6 should be ample.

I'd be going to your local breeders house and seeing what works for them (assuming that's who who want to buy off) and posing some questions at them... a 5 minute conversation saves 3 hours of typing :D

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Just a quick update, I've decided to go ahead with Dennison for the building of the tank. Been trying to call him all arvo but had no answer so I'll try again tomorrow.

Hopefully he can come around and check the job out (right now it's just timber stud work for the wall) so we can exchange ideas.

If I was to sump it, how would I alter the flow such that it doesn't completely destroy the Discus? Obviously I want a high turnover rate but without a jet engine input...

:P

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