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Old 10-01-2004, 03:02 PM   #1
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Help: Duetto Filter, etc. Newbie alert!

Hi, just inherited a 5.5 gallon from a friend. It came with a Duetto DJ50 filter. It's a power unit, with a removable filter on the bottom, a motor on the top, and a spot to plug in the air hose. The water comes in the bottom and out the top, slowly. My question is, do I sink this thing completely, or is the top supposed to stick out of the water? Right now I have just the spout on top out of the water, but the water is NOT over where the cord goes into the unit. I don't want to roast it.?????

Next question, I also have an under gravel filter, the air goes down into a rock at the bottom, bubbles up a clear tube, and comes out a filter. THe bottom is attached to the gravel filter "box", probably a pretty typical one, since I got it at mega mart, right? My question here is, how does that thing work? what's the physics that makes it "gravel filter"????

Oh yeah, one more. If I fill up the tank with house water, how should I treat it, to get the chlorine out?

Definitely last one. What temperature should this thing run at for fish I get at a typical pet store (ie nothing exotic).

Is there a FAQ for people like me? Seriously the last one.

Freshwater, obviously.

Thanks in advance!!!
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Old 10-01-2004, 03:17 PM   #2
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The duetto can be used submersed or a little out of the water. It'll be up to you. I've used them both ways in vivariums. The tap water will need to be treated with something to remove chorine, chloramines and metals. I use Aqua Safe. 78-82 degrees. I don't know anything about undergravel filters... HTH
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Old 10-01-2004, 08:51 PM   #3
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[center:b9d78c8757] Welcome to AA, Slarty Bartfast!! [/center:b9d78c8757]

There's no need for two filters in a 5.5 gal. I would skip the UGF.
FWIW, very few fish will be "happy" in a 5.5 gal. What fish were you thinking of?
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Old 10-01-2004, 09:53 PM   #4
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this is a first aquarium for the family, and if it works out, who knows? I'm thinking nothing extravagant for this one, maybe half a dozen smaller fish. My kids would be thrilled to even have a goldfish! I used to have a tank as a kid, and had some neons that I really liked, but beyond that, do you have any recommendations for a small tank? Other small fish that I could inquire about? Thanks for the help!
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Old 10-01-2004, 10:23 PM   #5
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If you go by the very general rule of 1" of adult fish per gallon and the fact that most small fish like room to swim, you are very limited.
Most members will tell you that 5 gals is the bare minimum for a betta and a tank mate. I currently have a male betta and 3 khulli loches in a 5 gal. Goldfish require 10 gals minimum due to their messy nature.

My recommendation for a tank with a betta:
khuli loaches
dwarf frogs
cory cats
pygmy cory cats
*not all in the same tank--pick one --khulis and cories like to be in groups of at least three*

You must be prepared if the betta decided he or she does NOT like the tank mates. If you look around in the General forum, there are one or two discussions of bettas and tank mates right now.

www.liveaquaria.com has good general fish profiles and there are some fish profiles in the Fish and Plant profiles forum here at AA.
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Old 10-02-2004, 10:01 PM   #6
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Im not necessarily keen on a betta, at this point ANYTHING that swims is really cool! I have that aquarium screensaver on my PC and thought THAT was mesmerizing.

I liked the loaches, and I'll check out the others. That's a great website. Any others you'd recommend?

Oh, and is there one general food brand that is viewed as generally best, or does it depend on the fish?

I look through the descriptions of some of your setups and am amazed... "Holy smokes, hun, look at this, this dude has TEN fishtanks!"... Keep in mind, you're talking to a father of three kids that wanted to put a goldfish in a bowl, and I wouldn't let them. So I figure a couple goldfish in a 5.5gal tank are comparably ecstatic. Maybe the ideal goldfish habitat is 10 gallons, but that's ideal, and I have to work with what I have. What I hear you saying is that only a few fish for this tiny tank, and that's fine, less to worry about. I'll keep the 1" per gallon in mind, it's pretty limiting.

Again, the cool thing is that this might lead to a bigger tank, if we take good care of this one. Sometimes you gotta start out small, you know? Thanks for the help!!!!!!
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Old 10-02-2004, 10:38 PM   #7
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I started with fish that weren't even mine! Then the fish bug bit me!! I want another 10 gal tank for different shell dwelling cichlids, but my husband keeps saying no. Ah well, I have an office!

The other thing you need to keep in mind is filtration. Due to the tiny tank size, I would still stay away from a goldie.
I have had 5 gals set up and right now there is a 2.5 gal in the other room acting as QT. For a tiny tank, I recommend a 25 to 50 watt heater and a sponge filter. The filter will require an airpump and sponge. You can buy one as a kit, or make one. I make filters for my tiny tanks by putting an airstone on the end of an airling and then string it through a sponge (Aqua Clear sells sponges to go with their filters, but I just buy the sponges) with an X cut into it. Then I put the airline into the airpump and I have a filter! This will not filter fish poo or excess food, but it will allow the beneficial bacteria a place to grow.

OKAY, I just reread your original message and see you have a filter. I could have erased it, but it is good info in case you need it.

Another thing to consider as you and your family start out in this hobby is the larger fish live a long time. Potentially a goldfish could live to 10+ years. This is as serious as getting a cat or dog. Smaller fish such as bettas, some rams and cory cats live around 2 years.

I am trying to come up with a small fish that doesn't need lots of room. Have you considered a female betta? I have two in various community tanks. They are quite lively and do not seem to come down with diseases as often as males (due to better circulation due to less finage). My female bettas are in this thread: http://www.aquariumadvice.com/viewto...=32510&start=0

I will keep thinking of a fish that would do well in the small tank.
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Old 10-02-2004, 11:13 PM   #8
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I have been brainstorming and came up with:
dwarf puffer
two to three guppies

slim pickens!
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Old 10-03-2004, 01:29 PM   #9
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Id go for a betta because they are so beautiful and 3 cory cats.

But thats just me.
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Old 10-04-2004, 08:59 PM   #10
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Very cool. I'll definitely check into the dwarf puffer. Aren't the bettas aggressive fish? I sure don't care to have mean fish around.

Thanks for all the help.
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