Vortex diatom filter?

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fishorama

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Jun 28, 2006
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Does anyone still use these? My husband has become a broken record about them the last couple years :mad: . We had 1 ~35 years ago to "polish" the water (remove fine particulates). My thumbs were too small to charge the dang thing. He "says" he will clean it & recharge it as needed (fat chance, I bet!). I don't want 1 (in case you couldn't tell, lol). I don't want equipment I can't use...I think most of this stems from an extreme green water algae outbreak in our biggest tank that, admittedly, is a slow work in progress..."but that's what any self-respecting chem lab uses", I say BS.

I'm heartily sick of hearing this crap. I don't want a filter that clogs in days...

What say you old timers? I'm sure I could find 1 (or maybe it's 2 now) on ebay or somewhere but I don't want to.
 

dougall

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Mar 29, 2005
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20th century technology does not belong 8n this millennium.

They do work, there's also a cartridge that you can get for old marineland filters too.

Not sure about them removing green water though, maybe a UV sterilizer for that.
 

the loach

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Aug 6, 2018
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Well if it is just green algae and you don't want to adjust plants/stocking/lighting/water isn't an UV light easier?
-edited to say Doug sure types faster as me.. .
 

fishorama

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Yeah, thanks guys! I just went to the plumbing supply place this week to get the parts I need for my UV light (no charge!)...I think that's the answer...but Mr. Impatience...well, like I said, it's getting old...(head bang!). Gah!

I'm sure he'll have some lame reason we should still try again with a Vortex...soon...sigh...ugh!...I "think" I've convinced him that under gravel filters are not current tech...but it's been hard for the last 20 years...I'm tired of his "man splaining" how it better it can be...like the 1980s...fah!
 
Apr 2, 2002
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There is an alternative, if you can find one used. Marineland made a hang-on canister called the H.O.T. (hang on tank) Magnum 250 (gph). It has a micron cartridge (still available). This does a darn good job of polishing. If I remember right it filter down to 10 microns. However, one can add a couple of table spoons of diatomaceous earth which makes it filter even finer. Of course more frequent cleaning is needed. However, it is a lot easier than cleaning a Vortex.

I have 4 or 5 of the H.O.T.s. Two run full time on tanks- one on a 30 breeder for zebra plecos and the other as the 3rd filter on a 150 gal. and a thrid is for spot use. The rest are for parts and I can probably make at least one working filter if not two.. Years back I bought several used to add to the two I had.

Here is a NIB one on Ebay, but it's at about twice the price as they used to sell for. https://www.ebay.com/c/1300121189?iid=233741985861
Here is the Pro version which added a bio-wheel (I believe you can run the filter without the wheel) http://www.suburbanreef.com/marineland-hot-magnum-250-pro-up-to-50-gal.html
 

fishorama

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Thanks TTA. The trouble I have with this 110g & HOBs is the tank rim is too wide for AC 70s & Whispers I have. We had to trim off the "lip" on a 75g & this tank's is wider still, 1 inch vs 1.25. Maybe your 150g is similar? Would you mind checking for me please if it's not too much bother?
 

dougall

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Mar 29, 2005
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there's an internal marinelend polishing filter, theres the HOT filter, and the old Magnum canister filters too.

I believe all have a micron filter available, and you can polish even more by just letting some diatomaceous earth into the filter's intake. kind of like the vortex.


or you can stuff your normal filter full fo floss, or run a second filter filled with floss, and add a flocculant to the water too.

adding activated carbon or purigen may help too.


honestly, I wouldn't worry about using a vortex filter, unless you had one sitting around unused, and someone offered to do all the work for you.
 

fishorama

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I saw that internal & the Magnum canisters. I have Rena cans & don't really want another. Internals "junk up" the tank IMO but I am using an AC Quick Filter that need cleaning, I think it's bypassing the sleeve again now, it didn't help all that much for long. I "hope" to get the UV going this week...

This may be a chronic green water problem, at least at times. I have high windows that let light hit ~ a foot of the tank for a short while at some seasons. I thought hard about where to place this tank. It's on a slab so weight would not be an issue. I keep the blinds closed...but if green water isn't just from sun...I used Osmocote & root tabs & I now see some white dots on the substrate surface. I'll try vacuuming them out next WC...I've reduced the photoperiod a couple times & leave the light off for a day or 2 but don't want to kill off my plants either.

I used to have a big sheet of dense micron filter media, I don't know what size. I tried it in a canister & it clogged very fast. I worried about burning out the motor before I noticed...& cans are a PITA to clean every few days, if that's what'll take, meh. Maybe I'll look for it...I may have given it away. I may even have diatom powder somewhere...Let's all say "hoarder" together!

Goodness knows I have a lifetime supply of carbon, I may try that too...This tank is not visible from my usual house "realm" so I hardly notice even when the lights come on...until they were on when I got up in the night a few times...mechanical timers get a bit wonky after a while.
 

dougall

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Mar 29, 2005
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The point of a polishing filter is that you run it occasionally, not constantly.

If it is truly green water, the best option is going to be to plumb in an oversized UV unit to the XP return. Just expect it to reduce flow sonewhat.

Or depending how you fertilize keep everything out of the water, only fertilize roots.
 

fishorama

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Yeah, I understand water polishing. I thought I was just root fertilizing until the Osmocote balls came to the surface. I haven't found my old larger UV light since I moved, 9 years ago...I don't know where it ended up, lost or in a strange tub I've never looked in. If you've never had professional movers, they just put stuff wherever there's room...Someday I may find it but I have looked for it in fish tubs & boxes...many times.

Part of my issue with inline UVs is the speed of the flow doesn't allow enough dwell time for the UV to do its thing. I researched before I bought the 1 I "had" (have?). But that was quite a while ago...Some canisters just blast the water past the UV without enough time do much if anything helpful.
 
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