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Author Topic: My Awesome Thrift Store Find!  (Read 673 times)
Goldiegirl
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My Awesome Thrift Store Find!
« on: July 28, 2012, 04:32:50 PM »

Hey everyone, it's me!  Wink

Haven't been on in such a long time due to many unfortunate events.

I have lost my cat Rusty, my dearest friend, due to a horrible kidney problem...and it has been devastating. He was only 8 and I didn't want him to suffer, so the decision was made to put him down.  I have learned that much with keeping fish.  When they are in pain and the condition is only getting worse, you have to make one of the toughest choices ever.  Cry  Very, very hard.

I lost most of my fish due to a parameter crash resulting in an outbreak of internal bacterial infections. I am down to three fish: my pearlscale, Marble (who has the tank all to himself), Sterling (silver oranda) and Carnelian (red oranda).

On the bright side, I was thrift-store shopping with my sis and she spotted something in the corner of the store (how did I miss it?! I'm the fish person  Tongue) and it was a 20 gallon tank! Had to tangle with a man who wanted it desperately after I claimed it (he tried to convince me I was getting a bad deal because "you should only pay a dollar per gallon," funny thing is it was 20 dollars)  Roll Eyes

The tank came with gravel, plant decor, a sticker thermometer, an undergravel filter (unusable), a python siphon (oh, can someone PLEASE tell me how to work this thing?! Cheesy) and an aqua tech 120 gph filter (fortunately, that works.) I also have a heater (to keep the temp regulated) and a cycled sponge filter in there.  I have had the tank for 3 weeks now. 

My question is really about the aqua tech filter.  I've heard many people say that such a filter is a piece of junk, but so far I really like it (probably won't be saying that when it breaks down Shocked).  For those of you that have one, you know that it has the carbon cartridge that is supposed to be replaced every 2-4 weeks and has some non-replaceable biological "netting" that helps provide a home for the good bacteria. I don't really want to fool with replacing the cartridge.  Is there a way that I can reconstruct the whole thing to make it more of a biological filter instead of a carbon one? Right now I have the old cartridge in there (who knows if it's working or not...and can it harm my fish by being in there without being replaced on a regular basis?). I was thinking that perhaps I could get a bit of sponge and rig it in there instead of the carbon, but what do I know.

Anywho, thanks all for any help/comments/advice.

Goldiegirl
« Last Edit: July 28, 2012, 04:38:08 PM by Goldiegirl » Logged
scrivens345
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Re: My Awesome Thrift Store Find!
« Reply #1 on: July 29, 2012, 02:42:34 AM »

I converted  an old Marina filter using bits of sponge and ceramic balls...it works on my small quarantine tank Grin
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fantailer
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Re: My Awesome Thrift Store Find!
« Reply #2 on: July 29, 2012, 05:59:09 AM »

Yay youre back Goldiegirl!!!!

Sorry about your cat. RIP
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Nossie
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Re: My Awesome Thrift Store Find!
« Reply #3 on: July 29, 2012, 10:34:40 AM »

Good to have you back! Smiley

Same thing happened to me :'c I have just 5 fish left and one in quarantine :'c
Nice find though! I don't have much to add about the filtration since I don't know much about different brands, but if I were you I'd just stick some sponges in there and customize it. As long as it's running you can put more or less whatever you want in there Tongue
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Goldiegirl
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Re: My Awesome Thrift Store Find!
« Reply #4 on: July 29, 2012, 04:43:06 PM »

Thanks all for your input! Scrivens, I was thinking like a squarish sponge with a rubber band to hold it in somehow lol. Will have to play around a bit because carbon filters...yuck. 

I made the st*pid decision to put the old carbon filter cartridge in because I thought I could salvage it, turns out it poisoned my water.  Angry Carnelian doesn't seem to be doing well with it.  Did a large water change and took the thing out.  Hopefully she'll turn around quickly. 

Thanks Fantailer, hope all's going well in fish land!

And poor Nossie, sorry to hear about that.  Hope the one in quarantine recovers soon, they are so precious and you hate to lose them. 

Going on vacation tomorrow...ah, summertime. <3 Will be gone for one night, so I'm making sure everything is in tip-top shape before I leave. 
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Skwishee
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Re: My Awesome Thrift Store Find!
« Reply #5 on: July 31, 2012, 09:03:26 AM »

I agree with Nossie, stuff whatever you want in the filter if it's working! Cheesy
I found with my internal filter, I just took out the carbon and added an extra white sponge for the bacteria, so I just have sponges in there  Smiley
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Goldiegirl
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Re: My Awesome Thrift Store Find!
« Reply #6 on: August 01, 2012, 09:39:28 PM »

Okay Skwishee, thanks for the advice!

So what kind of sponge did you use so you knew it was fish safe?
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Skwishee
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Re: My Awesome Thrift Store Find!
« Reply #7 on: August 02, 2012, 03:48:18 AM »

Oh sponges that came with the filter  Wink

When I first brought the filter last year I got 'spare media' at the same time, so once I'd ran out of carbon, I just chucked a spare sponge in there instead.

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Goldiegirl
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Re: My Awesome Thrift Store Find!
« Reply #8 on: August 03, 2012, 10:52:15 AM »

Oh I see.  Thanks for that, Skwishee.  I'm afraid I'm going to have to resort to a craft store or somewhere where they sell cell foam - have heard that's fish-safe.

Lost Carnelian, sadly.   Cry She wasn't able to turn around after removing the waste-poisoned cartridge; the damage was already done.  I decided to move Marble in with Sterling so the latter wouldn't be alone.  They seem to be doing pretty well together.

Thanks all for your help!
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Nossie
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Re: My Awesome Thrift Store Find!
« Reply #9 on: August 05, 2012, 05:34:04 AM »

I'm really sorry for your loss Sad
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