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Old 07-20-2004, 08:19 PM   #31
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i think i might do this, order a little bit of this from big al's, does this mean i still have to add some ammonia everyday to keep all my bacteria happy?
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Old 07-20-2004, 10:58 PM   #32
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Oh yeah - the bacteria that you have already will need to be fed, so you will be adding ammonia until the cycle is done and fish go in.
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Old 07-24-2004, 02:25 PM   #33
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ok, well after nearly 9 weeks of straight ammonia readings and all the posts i've put on here i've finally decided to cheat. I got a biowheel today, the mini one by penguin which is good for 20 gal. I'm running that with the filter which we kinda estimated may be a little under rated for my tank. So maybe with the two together i can solve this problem and get a cycle going. Many told me not to put the biowheel in until i had a full complete cycle but i don't think im ever gonna get there that is why i got the biowheel. I do have a question about the biowheel though. I had to bring my water level way up to the top, higher that i like to bring it because if you don't the wheel splashes all over the place. If i cut the bottom lip off the biowheel will that affect how the wheel spins? then the water will just go straight down instead of bouncing off the lip. I can't tell if the lip is designed to give spin to the wheel or not. Has anyone experimented with this?
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Old 07-24-2004, 02:30 PM   #34
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Don't do anything to the biowheel, if you can help it. It does spin wildly and splash a bit when it is new, but as it grows bacteria on it, it will slow down and not splash so much.

I can't see how a biowheel would do anything but assist you during a cycle. What was the reason given not to use a biowheel during a cycle? There is no cheating when it comes to cycling a tank - anything you can do to speed things along is a good thing.
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Old 07-25-2004, 12:50 PM   #35
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I had mentioned back around 4-5 weeks after i first got my tank that i was considering a biowheel. Someone had replied saying not to do so, that it would prevent my tank from actually growing the bacteria cause the biowheel would do it all instead. After reading up on it and checking it out myself i too agree with tankgirl as to why it would not help my cycle. After running it for about 18 hours now the water is already much clearer than it was without it. I am running it along with my filter. I am pretty sure that the filter that came with the tank is too small. The inlet tube for the filter can't be more than 3/8 of an inch around, while the inlet tube for the mini biowheel is about 3/4 of an inch round and is a much smaller unit all around. I'll bet you that the biowheels puts out twice the gph as the power filter. Well, with both of them running i think i'll be good. I want to get some sponges today just to keep in the filters. Maybe that will give some good footing for the bacteria i'm trying to grow. I'm gonna test the water later today and see how it looks. I'll keep you posted
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Old 07-25-2004, 12:59 PM   #36
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i too agree with tankgirl as to why it would not help my cycle.
I may misunderstand, but I think a Biowheel WILL help a cycle.

Underfiltration will slow things down as well, so it looks like you are on the right track. Keep us posted.
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Old 07-25-2004, 11:50 PM   #37
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yes i agree after reading up on the biowheel that it will help!! I'm looking for the post where i mentioned it and someone had mentioned for me to get my tank cycled without if first. When i find it i will quote it. I did not put sponges in besides the sponge filter on my air pump. I bought some media bags (smaller ones) that were already filled and made to go in some other type of filter but they fit perfectly inside the cartridge of the power filter and the other one sits well inside the biowheel as well. I got some ghost shrimp to help with the "leftovers" but they are scared to death of the tetra's who for some reason keep harrassing the poor things. I hope that with all this i'm going in the right direction. I have also noticed that the inside tube to the powerfilter is getting all gunked up with growth and algae. I'm going to get a brush and clean that out and while i know i should leave that in there, the tube is already small enough and the more water i can get through there the better. I might get one more media bag and stick it in my tank under the cave rock i've got in there, they don't have to be in moving water do they? My betta will be upset cause that is where he hangs but he will still have some room in there! Oh, readings in the last 24 hours are the same, i expected them to be. I would guess at the soonest another 2-3 weeks till readings change. Well that is it for now. When anything different happens i will post, thanks a ton everyone!
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Old 07-27-2004, 09:40 PM   #38
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don't worry, i'm about 2 weeks into it with nothing but ammonia... no nitrites yet.. sucks that i messed up my first time and all the bacteria died cuz i had nitrites withing a week!!
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Old 07-28-2004, 11:59 AM   #39
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Great news everyone! Finally i'm getting a cyle!! I checked my reading last night and the ammonia is finally going down. It went down to .5 from 1 and my nitrites have spiked to about .5 as well. they have never been that high. Most people would not be happy when they saw nitrite readings but in my case after nearly 12 weeks its good to see a cycle starting to take place. I guess putting that biowheel in really did work, along with the pre-filled media bags in each filter. I've just got to keep up on the water changes now cause i know the nitrite is a lot more serious than the ammonia, though both are bad! I think i might have just been doing too much agitating to the tank, you know, the new tank owner jitters. Vac whenever you see dirt, rinse the filter whenever you see dirt, that type of stuff. I basically just gave up except for that biowheel and the media bags. I did nothing to the tank for the last two weeks except feed VERY SPARINGLY. I didn't even do water changes(bad i know). But it seems to have paid off for the better cause now i've got a cycle going. They weren't kidding when they tell you when just starting a tank to not touch anything, just let it go! ok, well, i have to change water now cause the nitrite is in the caution-stress zone so gotta get going. thanks again everyone!
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Old 07-28-2004, 02:13 PM   #40
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Oh, yay!
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