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  1. I have used a Tom Aquarium Mini Internal Filter - 45 gph . It was super quiet (in my daughters bedroom - had to be quiet). But the quality wasn't great, noticed a crack in the top of it after a few months and was afraid to put it back under water. So wouldn't get another Toms. I'm not a huge fan of cleaning internal filters either, seems like every time you stop them and pull them out, the filter gunk runs out into the tank. I ended up just putting a hob on the back and its surprisingly quiet really, just make sure to keep the water high enough not to get a water fall noise. Occasionally I get a little rattle in the lid, but just wiggle the lid a bit till it stops. I also put a little filter floss between the tank and the HoB wall, that seems to take some vibration noises out too.
  2. My in-laws condo has fishing wire (or some type of wire) strung up along their docks deck railing to deter the birds. I laugh every time I see it because there are usually birds standing on the railing, totally oblivious to that wire put there to keep them away.
  3. I'll have to keep the Aqueons in mind if I need a new HoB for my little tanks, I mostly have the aquaclear and some other unknown brand of HoBs and they never started back up for me, drives me crazy. Maybe it was just that they always drained when I cleaned the tanks, but I thought it was when I turned the power off as well.
  4. I have never owned a Fluval Fx6, but that thing looks HUGE. 17" diameter x 20" high. I can't imagine moving it or think of how much water it holds... I have a Fluval 306 and and Eheim 2213 on my 40B and I like them. Probably could/should have gone up to the next size Eheim, but overall I'm happy with the combo. If I had to do it all over again, probably would have just gotten 2 Fluval 306s to keep the number of different pads, etc I have to keep around to a minimum. Great easy to use filter, really like my Fluval 306. I'd probably never just have 1 of anything on my tank. I like having 2 canisters because it makes the canisters a size I can work with easily, the peace of mind/safety factor in case one goes out, and I like to alternate cleaning them, which helps keep my system from seeing any bumps. A canister/hob combo works well, I think a lot of people do this. Answers to your questions: 1. One FX6 is plenty for a 60 gallon tank. 2. I think the main advantages of a canister is that they can hold more media, can look cleaner because the hob isn't on the back, has more ways to modify the output flow, is less likely to get sand in the impeller, and has more options like adding UV, a heater, etc.. I also think they all start back up after a power cycle/outage without priming (one of my biggest gripes with HoBs). The main disadvantages are that they are more expensive and some think more difficult to clean. About having more media, some of the larger HoBs probably hold as much as the smaller canisters. There is no HoB as large as that FX6 though. 3. Canister and HoBs will probably have very similar current, except with the canister you have some options on how to direct it. If you do get a canister, definitely watch some videos of setup/cleaning before setting yours up. Maybe even do it before purchasing. The instructions given are not always the best.
  5. I can tell you that in my tank, my nitrates don't really go up much each week. I've got 3 fish in a 40B and the most I've seen my tank is maybe 20 ppm Nitrate, usually its under 10ppm. I actually bought a different brand of Nitrate test to confirm, thought my test was bad. I'll use both of them randomly just to check. I keep thinking my Nitrates will go up since my fish are getting bigger (around 250 g of fish total), it just doesn't get higher. Wish I could say I have a lot of plants, but my guys eat every single new growth on my anubas plant. I know that I had bad water a month ago coming out of the tap for a couple of weeks. The fish were just off on water change one day. Nothing I could test showed anything different, but clearly there was something different. I added some carbon and crossed my fingers hoping I didn't have to lug 40+ gallons of water home from the store. So I say its possible to have perfect water tested water and still have sick fish. Nitrate isn't the only thing we have to watch out for. That said, chances are some of the people with perfect water truely didn't perform a good test.
  6. I've seen people write "you can never have to much filtration, just to much flow." I think the filter will be great. Pretty sure there are quite a few of us here that have 10x filtration using canisters only. I'll let someone else explain the bacteria, but my understanding is that they are constantly increasingly/decreasing to adjust to the load in your tank. As long as you are not under filtered, the bacteria will adjust themselves to your systems load. And 2 goldfish produce a lot of waste, your filter will have plenty to do! hehe.
  7. I can never get good photos, but here are some before and after of my crew. The first is them in October 2013, the others are from today. They were pretty itty bitty here, both less than 10 grams. Thats a 10 gallon they are in. Here they are today, about 18 months older. I weighed them a month ago and got 60 grams for Bronco (all orange) and 90 grams for Zoom (calico) and Elsa (ranchu hiding behind Zoom). Zoom and Elsa have such big bellies compared to Bronco. She's my svelte little fantail. They're all about 3 inches long, body only. I kind of liked this photo of Zoom and the typical Bronco photo...
  8. Sorry to hear you had a bad experience. I've had the 3 canisters now a Filstar, Eheim, and Fluval. The Filstar was a bear to setup, I was so so frustrated and it leaked from one of the seals. What I finally did was watch some setup videos. When I got the other 2 canisters I did the same. It made it sooo much easier. And then I watched people take them apart to clean, I actually took the whole lid off of my Filstar at the tank, instead of just removing the hoses... Needless to say just disconnecting the hoses at the tank was a LOT easier and less messy. When I broke my Filstar, the reason I didn't get the same thing, was because I had such a hard time with the Filstar. Went with the Fluval canister instead. And I'm really happy with that decision, it was so much easier to setup. They're more expensive than the Filstar/SunSun types, but possibly the only type I'd ever get now. I love my Eheim too, but the Fluval for ease of use, is hard to beat. And I'd not get anything bigger than the Fluval 306. My younger self would have been fine (maybe), but those big canisters hold a lot of water and are heavy.
  9. I think I might be the odd one here, but I actually prefer cleaning the canister over my old hobs. I think canisters are really easy to clean. I HATED cleaning my hobs, somehow I always made a mess. I think the hobs are more fussy as well on starting them back up from being powered down. As far as leaking, I've not had problems, but I do watch them for a bit after opening them to make sure there is no water anywhere. Mine both sit in little bins under my cabinet so I can easily see a leak and catch a small leak if there is one.
  10. I'd put your coarsest pad/filter media on the bottom and the fine on the very top. My fine white pads are pretty thin so I just put them on top of my highest bio layer. If they give you some mech ring type things maybe throw those in the bottom tray, then a tray of coarse blue pads, then large biomax, then small biomax with the fine filter on top. The concept being each layer gets progressively smaller for particle capture, it should be less likely to plug up or restrict flow that way. For my setups I pretty much followed what Eheim or Fluval told me, which seems to be a good largest to smallest setup. Eheim classics: Top - Fine pad 3 - Eheim substrate pro (biomax type stuff) 2 - Coase foam filter Bottom - Eheim Mech, which is some type of ceramic rings with large holes Fluval: Top - Fine pad and chemical on top - I don't use chemical so just threw in more Biomax type 3 - Biomax 2 - Coarse foam First - Foam filter
  11. I have the Fluval 306 on my 40B and I don't think its enough for my tank. So I'm guessing the SunSun 303b wouldn't be enough for a 55gallon either. I think biologically its fine, but I thought there were to many solids left in the tank with just it. I got a smaller eheim to go with it and really like the combo for keeping the tank clean. I like having 2 smaller canisters over 1 big one and probably would never just run 1 big one. Safety factor if 1 isn't working, I clean one of them every other week (overkill I know, but its easy and I'm a tad overstocked) so I'm not really worried about cycle bumps if I'm overzealous, and I can't even imagine how much heavier/awkward 1 bigger canister would be. The fluval 306 is at the edge of what I'm comfortable cleaning. I'm not sure I could easily manage anything bigger and would skimp on cleaning it.
  12. I've not tried killing snails before, just tried keeping them alive. I think my goldfish kill them *cry* The medications you listed all cause problems for snails, but I think it depends on the type of snail to how they react. Some are more sensitive. You'd have to research doses. Even prazi is supposedly harmful. One of the mods would have to tell you which is least harmful to goldfish. I personally would just keep the tank/filter clean for a while. Since they're just in your filter, clean it weekly. I know I've read of people using a piece of lettuce or something the snails would like, then take it out when the snails get on it.
  13. Another thought about putting the tank in front of the window is whether you want to see the back of your tank from your window outside. Is the back of your tank something you want to be able to see? If its covered in HoBs and cords, it might not be the most attractive sight. Or if you do end up getting, or already having, an algae wall do you want to see that?
  14. I've had pretty good luck in my hobs using the aquaclear biomax bags, http://www.amazon.com/Aqua-Clear-A1372-Aquaclear-50-Gallon/dp/B000A7BCG4/ref=sr_1_4?s=pet-supplies&ie=UTF8&qid=1422308037&sr=1-4&keywords=aquaclear+50&pebp=1422308088208&peasin=B000A7BCG4 , shrimp and betta tanks. I like that they come pre-bagged and I can get a size that fits well in whatever HoB that I'm using, I think they have 5 different sized bags. Not sure if its the most cost effective way to do it, but I like the solid bag over the ones with zippers or ties.
  15. I don't think it was Amazonia that was sharp, it's really round and soft. If anything I would think it was the buffering. A ph near 6 and I think it buffers kh down as well.
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