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Re: Aquatic Plants Digest V3 #1258

Tom wrote:
>> I usually use a power head to flow water into the top of a 4 inch dia ABS
>>  tube 12 or so inches long filled with lava and a peace lily. A small flow
>>  works well such as that from a 3/16th airline tubing or rigid tubing. Cap
>>  the bottom of the tube and make a hook so the tube will hang on the back of
>>  the tank and make a slightly larger return tube that flows back into the
>>  tank.
Bob wrote:
>That sounds easy enough, but I'm confused about the connection of a 3/16" 
>airline to a powerhead output.  Could you be more specific about how you do 
>this without blowing the tube off from back-pressure?.  ABS may also not be 
>the best choice, as it leaches plasticizers into the water.  That is why it 
>is only approved for drain lines in the US, and not for water supplies.  PVC 
>would be safer.  I'm sure it probably doesn't leach fast enough to threaten a 
>tank that gets regular water changes, but why risk it.  This single plant in 
>a single small "filter" is probably intended for small setups, yes?  I 
>recently heard that a certain well-known breeder of Apoistogrammas has set up 
>4" roof gutter sections over his tanks.  He planted them with various stuff 
>and runs the water up out of the tank to one end of the gutter with a 
>powerhead.  A drain at the other end lets the water run back down to the tank

Back pressure is the idea. I'm just plugging the output some. Enough to
cause the water to go up to the tube. I can lower the flow in this manner
also which is also good in small plant tanks. I don't want 100gph going in
10 gallon tank or through the plant scrubber.I recall that the fellow who
was asking of algae scrubbers had a small tank.I've used ABS for these for
12 years+. I can't attribute a single problem to them in any way. I prefer
ABS due to it being thicker than PVC and also it is easier to add PVC L's to
and can even be screwed into with threaded PVC parts. They are then painted
to match the hood or decor. Larger systems are great under the tank-sump
style set ups are nice with plants and vines coming up from the back of the
stand. This looks good and is pleasing to the eye.
I use a "L" PVC 1/2" and drill a hole about 4 inches up from the bottom on
the 12x3-or 4 inch Diameter ABS tube I believe 5/8" in dia(or to match the
outflow). I use the cement for ABS to seal it up. I add a knock out cap to
the end that is closer to the pvc output(the bottom). After it's dry, I
paint with a non toxic paint and add the 1 inch piece of 3/16" rigid tubing
to the "top of the device in a hole drilled to hold it in place and add the
plant/lava/water flow. 
The gutter thing is fine for a fish room but not in a living room IMO and
The Chief Officer of Aesthetics would not let this happen! Ocean Aquarium in
SF has a similar gutter system going on their tanks. I think they use Water
sprite in there.

I'll have such a device at my planted tank workshop hosted by San Francisco
Aquarium Society on September 17th in SF. All are welcomed and it's free.
There will be a raffle for the display tank being presented. I'll talk about
practical set up- not theory so much.  

Tom Barr