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Old 02-09-2004, 10:52 PM   #1
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DIY bio-wheel

Has anyone created anything similar to the marineland bio-wheel setup (not the full penguin or emperor power filters but the bio-wheel only units)?

I tried to fit a biowheel on a tetra-tec whisper filter (the tiny one that comes with some 10gallon aquarium kits) and had limited success. Once the bio-wheel began to build up bacteria it slowed to a complete stop as the mouth on the tetra tec was slightly too large and the flow was slightly low for spinning the biowheel (I even put in little pieces to direct the flow onto the bio-wheel more fully but it was not enough).

...so; has anyone tried to just use a cheap $5 water pump (something like 50 gph flow) to spray water directly at a bio-wheel to add some bio-filtering to a tank? What did you do?

I am planning to just build a little bracket and cover as best I can. The cover would prevent dust from falling on it as much as possible and to keep water from splashing off. I was thinking that I should have some type of a flat surface held at an angle for the pump to spray at diffusing the water to a wider flow (instead of a small stream hitting the bio-wheel in one area). I am planning to use small scraps of plastic from here and there with aquarium silicone to fuse it together. If anyone could let me know of any pertinent info to prevent me from wasting time/money in building this it would be appreciated.

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Old 02-10-2004, 12:47 AM   #2
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you probably have your reasons, but you can buy a bio-wheel pro 60 for around 31bucks at that pet place or better yet, you can get a Penguin Bio-Wheel 125 for 15bucks there as well. It's a hob filter with the bio wheel addition, it's rated for 20gal tanks.

i haven't tried building my own yet (have an idea of building one into a sump, like the tidepool models) but i have used bio wheels in the past and currently have a 12gal eclipse system running. In the directions for both units, it states that after the bacteria culture develops it's normal for the wheel to spin at irregular patterns, or stop for a little while, spin a little and stop again. marineland also suggests if it stops for long periods of time, to rinse the biowheel, and that will fix the problem.

well i seriously doubt a 50gph pump would be enough. stand alone biowheels use a gravity fed system and i don't think a 50gph pump would supply enough water to the biowheel to keep the gravity system running for long, i have a biowheel 60pro and when i plumbed it into my existing system [it was about 5yrs ago now], i found i didn't have enough pressure and the water would drip out of the first 2holes in the spraybar, cling to sides and run down the plastic housing and eventually back in to the tank, missing the wheel completely. probably 100 pump would do it but once you buy one of those, it will be about 10-15bucks from a LFS, and you would save money buying the pengiun 125

hope i helped,
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