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[APD] Re: Aquatic-Plants Digest, Vol 4, Issue 88

You don't need a Python to do a water change if you don't gravel vac.

I use a clear vinyl 1/2 inch hose, 23 cents per foot from the hardware
store, with a hose connections on each end and a shut off valve on the
outlet side, plus a pair of suction cups that fit the tubing. Drain by
sticking the shut-off end with suction cups into the tank, I put it at the
50% mark, the other end out the window. One suck on the window end to get
water flowing over the rim of the tank and I have lots of time until the
water gets there (it's a 50 foot line). I'm actually free to walk away,
assuming the suction cups hold. I use this time to do any testing or
trimming. When the drain is done, it stops, I hear the gurgle of air in the
line so I walk the last of the drain water down the line to the window, then
take that end to the sink.

For the refill, at the sink I have a 90 degree connector for the faucet with
hose threads and some connector thing that mates the sink threads to the
hose threads. I get the hot water going, try to mix the temps correctly,
then stop and connect the hose. Peak around the corner to be sure those
suction cups have held (!) and start filling. Eventually I'll get one drain
line for each tank, to reduce cross contamination, but for now this is
working. This line reaches 5 of 6 tanks from one sink.

The shut off valve is not used much, but is handy when rolling it all up to
store in the big bucket. Closed, it keeps that last bit of water from
hitting the floor as I start rolling from the other end.

The tubing was from the hardware store, hose-mending connectors and hose
shut-offs, too. The nice brass 90 degree connector came from Walmart in the
RV department, it has a nice plastic knobby grip so on and off is easy. The
threaded connector thing was from the plumbing department. The suction cups
are probably an eheim part, I'm not sure, just something from the parts box.
My cost, about $20US total. Plus a big bucket to store it in. I bleach the
whole thing if it discolors, every few months perhaps.

Draining and filling is a lot slower using the drain/fill sink attachment,
that internal nozzle that creates the suction slows things up and the sink
is so much higher than the outlet when I stick the hose out the window, I
get better flow now. After the second drain/fill split, spraying water
everywhere, sealing it only partly worked. I decided I really didn't need
that part.

Ann Viverette

> One other thing - 50% water changes can take much longer than 25% water
> changes if you use buckets and don't have enough (if you take 2 hours to
> warm say 25 gallons of water to the right temperature, then it's going to
> take all day to do it twice). But using this new cunning theory, somebody
> could find a method that needs less water changes - or more likely
> identifies an existing method that works and explains why. But that's just
> me cowering from the price of Python's - over £27 for a 25ft one!
> --
> Andrew McLeod
> thefish at theabyssalplain_freeserve.co.uk

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