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I sent this message to the wrong guy. He liked it, so I thought perhaps it
would be worth repeating. After reading on this list that there are a lot
of people with rather heavily stocked tanks, maybe this will help. Since
the subject of filters and consequently filter materials has come up,
perhaps this is a timely post.
I got sick and tired of buying carbon that needed to be washed for ever in
order to remove the dust. Or in the alternative, buying extremely
expensive, but good quality carbon in small quantities.
So, this is what I did. I looked up Filtration, Water, in the yellow pages.
phoned around and I went to a company that is a subsidiary of Lee Chemicals.
I think Lee is American. (This is in Toronto, Canada, but I assume other
cities have companies that sell carbon). I spoke with a very informative
sales guy. They sell very high quality carbon for municipal water
filtration and for the filtration of water used
in things like beer production. They gave me their specs on the carbon i.e.
does not leach PO4 etc. and I purchased a 25 kilogram (55lb.) bag for 75
dollars Canadian. The grain size is like the pre-packaged Fluval stuff, and
BONE dry - so I did not pay for WATER as in some hobby products. They have
8 x 30 mesh size (that's what I got) or 12 x 40 mesh size which is probably
closer to some of the aquarium carbons for sale.
The bag sits in my closet and will probably last for 4 years. But so what.
I loosely fill a knee-hi pantyhose with it and when I rinse it, barely any
dust comes off of it. Fizzes like CRAZY for a while. Leaves my aquarium
water crystal clear and does not suck out micronutrients like iron.
It's called "Black Star Carbon", coal based.
Even though I only bought I bag, they did not treat me like an unvalued
Ironically, one of their other carbons (coconut shell granular activated) is
called "Black Diamond" - marineland has just come out with a product called
Black Diamond. Probably coincidental.
I'm not trying to advertise for anyone. All I'm trying to do is let people
know that we have options, especially when on a budget.