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Old 12-31-2006, 11:18 PM   #1
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Canister Filter Set Up ??? - Newbie Needs Help -

Before yesterday I had never had an Aquarium. I bought a 90 gallon tank and stand an am now trying to get it set up.

My question is regarding the filter. The directions are only a couple of poorly translated sentences. I'm sure the store that sold it to me would be glad to help but they'll of couse be closed until the 2nd. So any help here would really be appreciated.

It is a Catalina Aquarium external canister filter, Ultra - 1000. My first question is how to hook up the plumbing. It came with two sections of hose and some hard plastice tubing and fittings.

1) Is it correct that the intake would be into the U-tubing hung over the rear of the tank, with the cage type fixture on the end of it?

1.1) The U-tubing is longer one way then the other, how deep into the tank should the intake tubing/cage go?

1.2) Where should the intake tube/cage be located?

2) Included is a foot long section of hard tubing plugged at one end with holes down one side of it. Can I assume that this is the discharge of filtered water back into the tank?

2.2) Where should this tube be located? Where in the tank and where in relationship to the intake tube/cage? It came with some plastic C clips on suction cups I assume to mount this tube to the side of the tank.

The tank is 90 gallons and I believe it's dimesions are 4'X2'X2'.

My next questions are related to the filter media.

3) I'm cutting my own media from bulk for the four trays. But I'm supposed to put carbon in it also. In which tray should I put the carbon, the top one?

3.3) I was sold a mesh bag to contain the carbon. However this bag is nowhere near large enough to cover the entire tray. Is this important, or does it not have to cover the entire tray?

Again any help you may provide would really be appreciated. Thanks! cls
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Old 12-31-2006, 11:27 PM   #2
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1. Yes, the cage thing (strainer), goes on the U thing, with the long side and strainer on the inside of the tank. The strainer should attach to the tube.

2. The foot long tube with holes is called the spraybar. This is the return area...filtered water is forced through the holes. the suction clips go on the spray bar.. and the spraybar can be mounted vertically or horizontally, with the holes facing in a direction that you please..

3. What do you have in the other trays?
I would not make the carbon cover the whole tray. If you have any "rocks" or small rough things, that would probably be the biological stuff. If that can fit in one whole tray, put that on the top. Put the carbon on the one below it.. but you might not need to put anything else there. On the bottom two, you can out foam or floss.
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Old 12-31-2006, 11:38 PM   #3
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Thanks a bunch, I'm good with the intake and return plumbing now. Although in the store they had one tube for both. I believe the bottom was the return and mid way up this pipe was and intake port. Is something like this available for my filter?

Regarding the filter media, now I'm more confused than I was. The thing has four trays. They said that they new filter does not include any media. They had pre-cut stuff but it was 4 times the price of bulk, so I bought bulk and now have to cut it to fit.

This stuff is sort of like a soft Scotch-Brite pad maybe an inch think. The guy said to put some in each of the four trays and this activated carbon in the top tray. I wasn't certain but I do believe he said the top tray. Perhaps my understanding of how the carbon is used is the problem. I assumed that all water was to filter through it. But if it's not supposed to cover the entire tray I guess I was wrong.

Any and all additional help appreciated... cls
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Old 12-31-2006, 11:42 PM   #4
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can you take a picture of it?
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Hagen AquaClear 30, Visi-Therm Deluxe 50, DIY CF 20W 6500K CF, Hagen Natural CO2 System :: Bloodfin Tetra (1), Red-eye Tetra (3), Black Skirt Tetra (3), Harlequin Rasbora (6), Platy (1), Otocinclus Catfish (1) :: Rotala Indica, Hygrophila Difformis (Wisteria), Cabomba Carolinia
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Old 12-31-2006, 11:57 PM   #5
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Of the media? I could, but really it's just an inch maybe inch and a half thick piece of light green fiber mesh. They had these pre-cut but the bulk stuff was sold mainly for the small pond supplies they sold. He said it's the same as the pre-cut packaged stuff only way less money.

You'd really think a filter like this would come with SOME information. All there is is what is printed on the outside of the box. cls
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Old 01-01-2007, 12:37 AM   #6
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hmm I suppose that green stuff goes on the bottom, but I don't know if water goes from the bottom to top or top to bottom.
Is the green sort of like a foam? what else came with it?/what else did you get in bulk?
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Old 01-01-2007, 12:42 AM   #7
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Yes, foam, although it's rather corse for foam. From the looks of things the intake drops the unfiltered water on the top tray and it filters down through all four, then is pumped back to the tank from the bottom of the canister through a hole in all four trays.

The tubing that came with it is all green. I just put a blue background on this tank and this green stuff looks like heck. I'll be looking into a replacement. cls
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Old 01-01-2007, 02:57 AM   #8
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My Jebo 828 came with media included in all 4 trays. This cannister works by sending unfiltered water through the top and returning from the bottom. The top tray has a fine pad beneath a coarse pad. The next tray had large ceramic bio noodles atop a coarse pad. The third tray small ceramic bio noodles atop a coarse pad. The fourth tray from the top has fine pad beneath a coarse pad. Hope this helps.
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Old 01-01-2007, 04:08 AM   #9
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Forgiving me for asking the most basic of questions, but just what do ceramic bio noodles do? And are they necessary?

The guy that sold it to me said that all I would need are these four trays fitted with these pad filters. And a mesh bag of activated carbon in the top tray.

The filter is rated for as much as a 250 gallon tank so it's way over kill for this 90 gallon tank.

Thanks again, cls
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Old 01-01-2007, 12:17 PM   #10
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bio noodles go on top/bottom of everything. In most canister filters, water flows from bottom to top, so it will go on top.
I don't know about which direction your canister filter has the water flowing.
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