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Old 05-18-2007, 06:17 PM   #1
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Couple of questions

1) What would be the best filter for a 35 gallon tank? Would a 50 gallon AC work?

2) How much such is needed in a tank/ 1 tsp per 10 gallons?

3) I do PWC but I am affraid when I do them to disturb the gravel around the plants and kill off the roots. Also, I find it sometimes hard to get into some of the nooks and crannies when using the vacuum attachment. Any advice here?
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Old 05-18-2007, 06:54 PM   #2
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You don't need to use the salt. Someone correct me if I am wrong, but I was under the impression that your plants won't appreciate salt too much. Some people use it as part of their general maintenance, while others just use it for treating ich and as a stress reducer while treating for other diseases. There is no right answer, but just FYI it isn't necessary.

As for the filter, I assume you are talking about the Aquaclear 50 (200 gph). I always find the manufacturer's rating for HOB filters to be pretty overrated. While I would not use that filter on a 50 gallon tank, you may be able to do so on a 35. My only concern would be that you may have one end of your tank that doesn't have much water flow. If you use the Aquaclear, I'd add a small powerhead on the other end of the tank, pointing toward the filter. Or, you could go for the next size up, the AC 70 (300 gph). Or, if funds permit, a canister filter would do a great job for your tank. Then you can have the intake on one side, and the nozzle or spraybar on the other side. No dead spots. Either way, you should be fine.

When you do your PWCs, you don't have to do deep gravel vacs in the areas that are planted. What I do is just kind of rest the gravel vac on top of the substrate in those areas, and suck up whatever detritus is on top.

If you don't already have the tank set up, I recommend Eco Complete plant substrate. It has absolutely worked wonders for me in my discus tank. You can use it alone, or mix it with gravel if you don't want just black substrate.

Good luck with the tank!
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Old 05-18-2007, 07:05 PM   #3
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Hey Severum,

maybe one of us is misunderstanding his post, but I thuoght it looked like he said he had a 35g tank not a 50. i would think that an AC50 would be fine for 35 gallons. However, if it indeed is a 50g tank i'd run an AC 50 at each end.
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Old 05-18-2007, 07:21 PM   #4
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You're right Mike, and I did read that, just didn't phrase my post very well. Thanks for pointing that out. I edited for clarification. What I meant to say was that while I wouldn't use that filter on a 50 gallon as per the manufacturer's rating, it should be ok for a 35. Just wanted to throw that in there about how equipment manufacturers tend to really stretch the suggested tank sizes, so the OP wouldn't think that the filter would be too powerful for his tank. Again, there is the issue with dead spots in the tank- I am assuming this is a 3 foot tank, as is a 30 long.

I should ask-- Ben, is this a 3 foot tank?
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Old 05-18-2007, 07:37 PM   #5
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The tank is 36"×12"×18" high.

Also, I have a filter with it, but the tank is an older tank. It has probably been with my family for +13 years. The filter that is with it is a AC 300, at least that is what the top plastic cover says. Does this mean its a Filter for a 300 Gallon tank? If so, would it be too much for this small 35 gal tank? I know it was used before on the tank, but that was probably a good 8 years ago.
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Old 05-18-2007, 07:39 PM   #6
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Nope, you're fine with that filter. That is the equivalent of the Aquaclear 70, just an older name. Same filter. It pumps 300 gph, and as you can see is one of the models I recommended to you.
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Old 05-18-2007, 07:42 PM   #7
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So if I pick up the filter replacement package for the 70, i can use that in the 300 then? Also, if I discover that the motor is dead, which is cheaper, new AC 70 or new motor? A new AC 70 would come with all the needed filters already.
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Old 05-18-2007, 07:54 PM   #8
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That's a good question, Ben. I'm not sure which would be cheaper, given the fact that you need to buy media as well. I'm guessing that you could get a good price for everything you need online. Try www.bigalsonline.com , www.thatpetplace.com , www.drsfostersmith.com , www.petsolutions.com . Or, if you want it asap, Petsmart will price match their internet prices. All you need to do is find the item on their site, and print out the page that shows both the item and the online price. Most of the time the internet price is much cheaper.

I don't use carbon in any of my Aquaclears, so this is what I do: Buy 2 of the foam blocks (most of the time you can find a 2-pack or 3-pack). Grab the BioMax insert (ceramic rings, any brand will do as long as it is bagged). Stack 2 sponges together, and put the BioMax on top. The great part about Aquaclears is that you don't have to replace the sponges until they are literally falling apart (again, don't listen to the manufacturer on this one, as they just want your money for replacements). You can rinse the sponges over and over in a bucket of TANKWATER (never tap water) as they get clogged/dirty. Same for the BioMax. Hope this is helpful!
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Old 05-18-2007, 08:12 PM   #9
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FWIW, I use a AC70 on my 30 gal tank. I was also concerned about the gph rating (which happens to be the rating without filter media. I agree the AC70 will be more than adequate. And Sev is absolutely accurate regarding the longevity of the foam. I had the same foam block in mine for two years.

Question: Are you considering planting this tank?
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Old 05-18-2007, 08:24 PM   #10
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Yeah, I plan on doing some plants. Though I probally wont be going high light, as I don't have the funds right not to buy a CO2 system nor know where I could get a CO2 tank. Also, I have a Big Als Warehouse nearby, 45 minutes away from my house. I'll keep the petsmart info handy.
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Old 05-18-2007, 08:35 PM   #11
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I saw your post in the planted tank forum. FWIW, you should direct your questions there. I can move this thread there if you want.
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Old 05-18-2007, 08:38 PM   #12
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Okay.
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Old 05-18-2007, 08:58 PM   #13
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Done. Now we can get you set up properly.
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Old 05-18-2007, 09:16 PM   #14
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I use a AC70 on my 58 gal tank and it works well. If you have plants and good substrate, I think you can have less powerful filter.
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