Reverse flow under gravel???

Jul 28, 2006
125
0
0
#1
Hi all. Newbie here with a few questions.
I'm starting a new aquarium. it's a 90 gallon that will primarily be a cichlid tank.. For filtration I will be running 2 emperor 400 power filters and an uncergravel filter with two aquaclear 402 (270g/hr) powerheads. I've read alittle bit about the RUGF set-up in which you reverse flow the undergravel filter. Is this worth doing or should I just run the UGF the conventional way??
thanks in advance for all answers.
 

Seleya

Superstar Fish
Nov 22, 2004
1,384
3
0
59
Cape Cod, MA
Visit site
#2
If you're going with cichlids, it is highly unlikely that any of your choices would be suited to a tank with undergravel filtration. Aside from the fact that UGFs have fallen out of favor in the fishkeeping community as better systems have become readily available, cichlids as a general rule simply are much too happy rearranging the substrate, which will unfavorably impact the efficacy of the UGF.
 

Likes: FishGeek
Jul 28, 2006
125
0
0
#5
so would you recommend that I keep at least one powerhead with a sponge filter on it to aerate the water? I bought some pretty small gravel for the tank bottom should I consider sand or mix the sand with the gravel??
thanks for the responses thus far. *thumbsup2
 

rohnds

Large Fish
Apr 23, 2005
408
1
0
Austin, TX (born NYC)
#7
UGF filter are the best biological filters that has come into the hobby. The UGF should provide more biolgical fileration than both the Emperor 400 combined.

But unfortunately it provide very little mechanical filteration. With 2 powerheads, this should provide enough mechnical.

But the trap many fall into is in taking care of the UGF, i.e. regular maintenance. Unlike your 400, UGF require constant cleaning, removing any debris that might get trapped under the plates. This is the reason many aquarist avoid the UGF. A good circulation under the plate is also important.

Like others have said, If I had a choice (despite my above argument for UGFs), I would go with the 2 400s.

Depending on the type of cichlids you decide to keep, more finer gravel would be more suitable. But finer gravel easily fall b/w opening and get trapped under the plates.

Rohn
 

Jul 28, 2006
125
0
0
#8
Thanks for all your replies.:)
I'm honestly still undecided and I really want to run the reverse flow undergravel as opposed to the standard UGF if any at all. My thinking is that it will make it easier to keep things clean because in theory It should resuspend bottom debris to be picked up by the powerfilters..no?
I'm not trying to beat a dead horse here but my last tank was a 55 gallon with two smaller power filters hob and two smaller powerheads and I had zero water problems and very clear water. I think you can never have too much filtration although over time with the standard UGF the rocks become dirty and I just though if I ran it reverse I could combat that situation.
thanks again.*PEACE!*
 

Last edited:

JWright

Superstar Fish
Oct 22, 2002
2,192
7
0
39
Snowy Upstate New York
www.cnytheater.com
#9
I would contended that with the new "bio" media, power filters are probably the best bio-filter in the hobby nowadays.

The rate of water flow is great, and the new media has a great deal of surface area.

I guess a better way to say it would be to say the power filters of today are more than sufficient, and much easier to care for, IMO.

On the topic of RFUG's though... RTR (Robert T. Ricketts) wrote an excellent article describing his setup for an RFUG. Called it the "Ultimate Reverse-Engineered Reverse Flow Undergravel Filter" or something like that. I couldn't find it with a quick google, but if you do manage to find it, it's a good read.
 

rohnds

Large Fish
Apr 23, 2005
408
1
0
Austin, TX (born NYC)
#10
True, you can never have enough filteration. When I first started, I had RUGF setup in all my tank, due to their superior biological filteration w/o any other filteration and I had no problem. ButI also cleaned my tank once a week. But these I have given up the UGF ... I am too lazy. I want a tank that require minimum attention.

Rohn
 

rohnds

Large Fish
Apr 23, 2005
408
1
0
Austin, TX (born NYC)
#11
What is the new bio media? I hope you are not refering to bio balls in canister filters? If you are they are also NO3 trap ... disaster waiting to happen just like a UGF w/o constant cleaning.

The amont biological filteration depends on the surface area of the media. Larger the surface area as in UGF or bio balls, larger the biological filteration.

Rohn
 

JWright

Superstar Fish
Oct 22, 2002
2,192
7
0
39
Snowy Upstate New York
www.cnytheater.com
#12
By "new bio media" I'm refering to any number of high surface area filter media being marketed under a variety of brands.

I'm not arguing that cannisters and HOBs require less maintainence. I'm saying they are a little more forgiving, and the maintainence is easier (at least, in my experience and opinion)
 

Jul 28, 2006
125
0
0
#13
Ok. I have everything set-up now. I decided to try the RUGF set-up and see how it works. my water was real nice and clear going in and the filters have already took out the small amount of haze that the water had going in. I treated the tank with start right and have it up to temperature. any reason I can't throw a fish or two in there now? I also have some strees-zyme and stress-coat I could add as well. thanks again for everyones input.
how do you pst a picture here?? I took some and I could post one.
 

Pure

Elite Fish
Nov 1, 2005
3,216
7
0
Jacksonville, FL
#16
I'm guessing by your last question about adding fish now, this tank isn't cycled?

In that case you need to have a read here. http://www.myfishtank.net/forum/fre...eshwater-beginner-stickies-read-me-first.html

Long story short. No you need to cycle the tank first and with what we know about fishless cycling there is no need to put a fish through the stress of a fish in cycle. Not to mention how much less work a fishless cycle is. All you do is add ammonia and test your parameters. If you put fish in an uncycled tank your not only going to stress them but your also going to cause yourself heaps of work doing daily water changes to keep the levels safe. You also stand a good chance of loosing a good amount of money due to deaths caused by the nitrogen cycle.
 

Jul 28, 2006
125
0
0
#17
Pure said:
I'm guessing by your last question about adding fish now, this tank isn't cycled?

In that case you need to have a read here. http://www.myfishtank.net/forum/fre...eshwater-beginner-stickies-read-me-first.html

Long story short. No you need to cycle the tank first and with what we know about fishless cycling there is no need to put a fish through the stress of a fish in cycle. Not to mention how much less work a fishless cycle is. All you do is add ammonia and test your parameters. If you put fish in an uncycled tank your not only going to stress them but your also going to cause yourself heaps of work doing daily water changes to keep the levels safe. You also stand a good chance of loosing a good amount of money due to deaths caused by the nitrogen cycle.

I used water from another tank I have, about a 30 old 70 new water mix.
I'll be watching things closely over the next few days to make sure things stay in check. There are many ways to do most of these things and it mostly all comes down to opinion. this topic is a perfect example..*thumbsups
 

JWright

Superstar Fish
Oct 22, 2002
2,192
7
0
39
Snowy Upstate New York
www.cnytheater.com
#19
Going for broke said:
I used water from another tank I have, about a 30 old 70 new water mix.
I'll be watching things closely over the next few days to make sure things stay in check. There are many ways to do most of these things and it mostly all comes down to opinion. this topic is a perfect example..*thumbsups
If your opinion is that the water from an established tank has enough bacteria to cycle your tank (or even put a dent in it), then your opinion is mistaken.

There are many ways of seeding a tank, you're right, but that's not one of them. You either need gravel, or established filter media in order to get what you need.

~JW