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Old 03-12-2006, 12:46 PM   #1
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PYTHON? What do I need to know before I buy?

Oh, by python I mean the system for water changes, not the reptile.

Alright, I have five tanks running and a sixth cycling (fishless). I'm getting a little exhausted doing water changes, folks. So, I've decided that the expense of a python will definitely be worth the reduced strain on my back, nerves, etc. I'm going to the city on Tuesday but will likely not purchase the python until Thursday on the way home (why waste on opportunity to procure LOTS of live food for the lizards?).

What do I need to know before I buy one? If it helps, I have two tanks in the living-room (44 and 55), three tanks upstairs (2-10's and a 5.5) and a tank in the basement (the 40 that I'm cycling). I also plan on adding between 2 and 4 tanks in the late summer or early fall (120-180 sizes). Any recommendations?
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375 cutsom - on hold indefinitely
55 FW - cycling
44 bowfront FW - 3 red cap orandas, 3 fantails, 3 golden dojo loachesone sailfin pleco
40L #1 FW - empty
40L #2 FW - empty
20 tall FW - adopted from my mother - 3 golden dojo loaches, 1 sailfin pleco, 4 assorted tetras and one mystery fish
10 long #1 FW - male betta, 4 peppered cories, 4 bronze cories, sailfin pleco, and some snails
10 long #2 FW - male betta, 1 praecox rainbow, 7 albino cories, sailfin pleco, and some snails
5.5 bowfront FW - 3 ADF's
8 year old flat-coated retriever, 3 year old mutt (looks like a small brindle lab) and a 6 month old miniature poodle (they're pets too, right?)
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Old 03-12-2006, 02:00 PM   #2
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figure out the distances between each tank and sink so you can ger the right lenght, and firgure out if you need any adapters.
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Old 03-12-2006, 03:28 PM   #3
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Indeed, the adapter can make or break your comfort level. Check the type of faucet you have and get the adapter (if needed). Japola is of course correct about hose lengths...don't want to come up short.
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Old 03-12-2006, 03:32 PM   #4
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Also, don't buy one at Petco if you're comfortable with online shopping. You can get them much cheaper online even when you combine shipping. I just got a 50' python for home (from www.drsfostersmith.com) and it cost me $39.99. At Petco they wanted $33 for 25' and $89.99 for 50'!
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Old 03-12-2006, 04:08 PM   #5
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You should know that this product will change your life. Welcome.

I can't imagine hauling buckets for 6 tanks!!!!!
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Old 03-12-2006, 04:35 PM   #6
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The tanks upstairs I'd probably still use buckets, as they are really small tanks. But the rest of them, the python will make things so much easier. Also, if the python is a bit expensive, check out the Lee's brand. It does the same thing and is just as good, from what I hear, and is quite a bit cheaper.
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Old 03-12-2006, 04:54 PM   #7
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I have the 50' lees brand that i picked up from a pet supplier on ebay for 39 bucks plus shipping... works great
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Old 03-12-2006, 06:11 PM   #8
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I hear having a sink is always nice LOL
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Old 03-12-2006, 06:16 PM   #9
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Another option is to get the shortest Python available and then pickup a garden hose of the appropriate length to save some money. I think I even heard of one person just picking up the parts individually avoiding the Python hose altogether. You will probably want to make sure that you pick up hose that drinking water safe to ensure there aren't any chemicals to harm your fish.
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Old 03-12-2006, 07:05 PM   #10
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You may as well buy your seventh tank while you're at it.
The python will make your life so much easier that your case of mts will get worse!
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Old 03-12-2006, 08:00 PM   #11
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They have them at walmart for pretty cheap
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Old 03-12-2006, 08:34 PM   #12
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I like the idea of the python actually, but it seems like kind of a hassle when it comes to refilling the tank and dragging it all back to the sink to make sure the water is the right temp
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Old 03-12-2006, 09:00 PM   #13
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For those who might feel like doing it on the cheap (or just like DIY'ing) here are the plans for a DIY python.

http://www.cichlid-forum.com/articles/diy_python.php

Keep in mind that when using a garden hose you need to make sure it's aquarium safe. But you can build a 50 ft one for around $20! And you get to brag about how YOU made it!

-brent

edit: tropicfishman- why not just check the temp on the sink when you hook it up? it requires you to have the water running to drain it, so just get the temp right in the first place.
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Old 03-13-2006, 03:03 AM   #14
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WOW! I was trolling the yellow pages online for the city I'm going to so that I could compare prices and I stumbled across a lucky find. I e-mailed a store owner because his main interest is polypteridae (bichirs) which is my dream species tank. I asked him about bichirs but also about whether or not he sells Pythons or Lee's. He's going to put together a price list for my dream tank (senegalus, retropinnis, delhezi, palmas palmas, and palmas polli) but, he also makes his own gravel vac systems and sells them and he's going to give me a quote a 100' foot system. He uses 3/4" braided nylon tubing and brass adaptors and connectors so, things will be durable to start with. He says his system is cheaper than buying Lee's or Pythons but, I'll wait for his quote to see for sure. I guess his business is primarily designing, setting-up, stocking, and maintaining tanks for business offices, restaurants and day spas in the city and he has references galore. We'll see what his shop is like - whether I buy the gravel vac system from him or not, I'm really interested in seeing his bichir set-up. Thanks for the advice guys.
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"Fish are friends - not food" Bruce in A Shark's Tale (except for pickerel of course!)
375 cutsom - on hold indefinitely
55 FW - cycling
44 bowfront FW - 3 red cap orandas, 3 fantails, 3 golden dojo loachesone sailfin pleco
40L #1 FW - empty
40L #2 FW - empty
20 tall FW - adopted from my mother - 3 golden dojo loaches, 1 sailfin pleco, 4 assorted tetras and one mystery fish
10 long #1 FW - male betta, 4 peppered cories, 4 bronze cories, sailfin pleco, and some snails
10 long #2 FW - male betta, 1 praecox rainbow, 7 albino cories, sailfin pleco, and some snails
5.5 bowfront FW - 3 ADF's
8 year old flat-coated retriever, 3 year old mutt (looks like a small brindle lab) and a 6 month old miniature poodle (they're pets too, right?)
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Old 03-13-2006, 12:09 PM   #15
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I'd consider his "improved" gravel vac very strongly Lydia. Reason being, there's always a way to build a better mouse trap. Personally, with 13 running tanks totalling 730 gallons, I wouldn't be without a quick pwc system. If there is a better one for sale, I'd love to know about it.

Drawbacks to the pyhton are as follows:
1. It's made of such a soft molded plastic that the threads tend to strip and wear out.
2. Water sprays from the housing and I need to cover the faucet with a dish rag so I don't soak the floor.

Advantages out weigh the disadvantages. I fill directly from the tap and my fish couldn't be happier. Please keep us posted.
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Old 03-13-2006, 12:19 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BrianNY
Drawbacks to the python are as follows:
1. It's made of such a soft molded plastic that the threads tend to strip and wear out.
2. Water sprays from the housing and I need to cover the faucet with a dish rag so I don't soak the floor.

Advantages out weigh the disadvantages. I fill directly from the tap and my fish couldn't be happier. Please keep us posted.
I couldn't agree more. The python is a Godsend, but I just wish that the faucet assembly was made of brass with a teflon ball valve to switch between drain and refill.

I avoid the stripped thread issue by using a plastic adapter between the Python and the faucet. It's alot cheaper to replace a stripped adapter ($1.29) vs a stripped Python assembly ($12.99).
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Old 03-13-2006, 03:54 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by BrianNY
I fill directly from the tap and my fish couldn't be happier.
over here the drinking water is treated and cant be used w/o dechlorinating before use.

i use my waste water for the house/outdoor plants (except when the salt content is high). i hate to waste water, but not everywhere has this issue.

i dont like em. i use a pump from my RO system to refill when necessary
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Old 03-13-2006, 04:01 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DaLoach
over here the drinking water is treated and cant be used w/o dechlorinating before use.
just an fyi that with the python you can just put the dechlor into the tank as you are filling and you won't/shouldn't have any problems. but if you are using RO water anyways then that's a different story.
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Old 03-13-2006, 05:39 PM   #19
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We FINALLY put a python in the fishroom at the petshop I used to work at, and oh my goodness, the difference it made!!! I would love to have one at home, but I have a fancy pull out tap on my kitchen, so I can't use it. I might be able to attatch it to my bathroom tap, and if I can, I certainly will try the DIY one that was recommended.

Lydia, where in Ontario are you, and what is the city? I'm in Alliston, south of Toronto, north of Barrie.

Take care,
Tracy
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Old 03-14-2006, 02:34 AM   #20
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I'm way up from you in the northwest corner... near the Manitoba border. I'm a 4.5 hour drive from Thunder Bay. I would never live in a city but I sure love to shop there for aquarium supplies. I even planned out all of the pet stores on a city of Thunder Bay map to make the pet-related shopping as fast and direct as possible. What we won't do for our fish!
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"Fish are friends - not food" Bruce in A Shark's Tale (except for pickerel of course!)
375 cutsom - on hold indefinitely
55 FW - cycling
44 bowfront FW - 3 red cap orandas, 3 fantails, 3 golden dojo loachesone sailfin pleco
40L #1 FW - empty
40L #2 FW - empty
20 tall FW - adopted from my mother - 3 golden dojo loaches, 1 sailfin pleco, 4 assorted tetras and one mystery fish
10 long #1 FW - male betta, 4 peppered cories, 4 bronze cories, sailfin pleco, and some snails
10 long #2 FW - male betta, 1 praecox rainbow, 7 albino cories, sailfin pleco, and some snails
5.5 bowfront FW - 3 ADF's
8 year old flat-coated retriever, 3 year old mutt (looks like a small brindle lab) and a 6 month old miniature poodle (they're pets too, right?)
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