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Re: cleaning cannister tubes....any tubes really
Just my little helpfull hint. If you want something cheap, easy, extremely effective for cleaning out all sorts of tubes, go to your local music store (instruments, not CD's;) and ask for a large bore trombone snake, or a tuba/baritone snake. It is a 3-4 foot long coiled wire cable with bristles on either end. They are about 3-5 American dollars, and will last forever.
For smaller tubes, (standard airhose or smaller) just find a length of 50-100# test monofilament fishing string and tie a knot on one end. Take a lighter and melt the knot so it doesn't come off. Shove it through any small hose and out comes the goo!
Hope this helps,
BTW. These aquariums have certainly brought out the miser/scavenger in me.....