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Old 07-20-2011, 03:56 PM   #1 
Neil D
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Smile Filter Media

What if I replace the carbon in my filter cartridge with gravel? Would that work? And I can add some carbon to my filter, in like a mini bag. Like the filter cartridge would have gravel in it, then a smaller 'mesh' bag would have a bit of carbon in it. I think this will work, do you?
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Old 07-20-2011, 04:28 PM   #2 
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: I just did something like that just now. I took two of the filter cartridges and cut one in half. I took some gravel and put it in the full size cartridge. Then I put carbon in the 1/2 cartridge and slipped that into the full size one. Now I can replace the carbon without replacing the actual BB media yay I'll post exactly how I did it evenTually. ReMind me
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Old 07-20-2011, 10:57 PM   #3 
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sponge is a much better material for using as a filter media replacement. If you mark a one inch chunk that fits the shape of the cartridge it is replacing you can cut slits in it so it plugs into the plastic carrier.. you can then put a fine layer of carbon between the sponge and the plastic carrier.

Carbon is usually bunged into bags but it really doesn't work well unless its in a layer that completely impedes water flow. It also doesn't work when applied to a sponge or a mesh of any kind; it must be flakes of naturally formed carbon. Even the formed pellets don't work.

For best example the Marineland/Aqua-tech cartridges used in the walmart and marineland filters, they all have thin slots on the back for the water to flow through. Those slots are that shape so that the carbon flakes wedge into them and force the water to partially flow through the flakes instead of just going around. Those slots were finely calculated to work with a specific production method for carbon filtration chips.

Anyway, a bit of a digress. One cubic inch of vacuume expanded lenticulated foam is roughly equivalent in surface area to a bag of rocks.
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Old 07-21-2011, 03:27 AM   #4 
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I suppose, but my filter is the tetra whisper 5-15, maybe I'll replace the rocks with sponge....
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Old 07-21-2011, 04:42 AM   #5 
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... you could cut two sponges so they fit snug on all sides then put one in, put some carbon on top of it then put the other in

sponge
sponge
sponge
carbon
sponge
sponge
sponge

I'd suggest using two pieces of sponge anyway, that way you can clean out the lower one in the sink and leave the upper for biology. When you use sponges as primary filter media you need to have a rubber glove on hand, run tap water into a bowl that has 2x normal water treatment in it (in the case of prime a single drop does a quart easily) and then squiish squiish squiish, repeat this at least twice. The rubber glove is because of WHAT you're squiishing out of the sponge, it'll stick to your fingers and smell funny.

If you don't mind sterilizing the lower (first) sponge, just squiish it out using hot water while wearing a glove. Hot as you can stand or use a bowl and a cup and use hot as the tap will give you. You simply squeeze then shake it out and stick it into a bowl of cool treated water and its ready to go back in the bottom of the filter.
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Old 07-21-2011, 07:45 AM   #6 
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I'm too slow. Is it possible to make that simpler? So put a sponge in the bottom of my filter, carbon, then one on top? Wouldn't there be carbon in my actual filter?

Or are you saying put sponge in the cartridge? Sorry, I'm a dumbo
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Old 07-21-2011, 05:16 PM   #7 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Neil D View Post
I'm too slow. Is it possible to make that simpler? So put a sponge in the bottom of my filter, carbon, then one on top? Wouldn't there be carbon in my actual filter?

Or are you saying put sponge in the cartridge? Sorry, I'm a dumbo
I'm referring to the whisper in-tank filters for the sponge-carbon-sponge thing. However if you're careful with the sponge you can slit down into it and *berk* carbon into the slitted space and get results.

Generally bags are only used in canister systems with downward or upward flow. (or Aquaclear filters)
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Old 07-21-2011, 05:17 PM   #8 
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Oh I have the Whisper 5-15 HOB filter.
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