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Keeping Crystal-Clear Water

Our Eheim 2228 has always provides more than enough biofiltration for our
135-gal, 100% planted tank. To get that crystal clear water, AKA "company
clear", we used to battle with a large Vortex diatom. Not only was is
difficult to use, but like all diatoms the water immediately begins to
dirty up with ultrafine particles after the next feeding. The next step was
to try a Magnum 350 with the micron cartridge (with the blue foam sleave)
running 24 hrs. This gave the desired result, but it was a pain to change
and bleach the cartridge every 3-6 days. 

I decided to try instead the Magnum's carbon container packed fairly
tightly with just (moistened) filter floss. Bingo! The results are just
about as good as with the micron cartridge. The floss lasts about 3-4 weeks
before it gets so dirty that the flow is compromised. As you might expect,
the size of the microparticles trapped decreases as the floss becomes used
(take it from me: without my glasses I'm so nearsighted that I can see
individual molecules). If you have a Magnum, it's worth a try. 

IMO a second canister is a good idea for large tanks. In addition to
separating bio, mechanical and chemical (carbonate source, phosphate resin)
filtration, it provides additional circulation for these large tanks. And I
can easily service the Magnum as needed and let the Eheim go for 4-5 months.

Jared Weinberger                    jweinberger at knology_net  
______    http://www.knology.net/~jweinberger/     ________