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  1. #1

    Lightbulb DIY Flow diverter/diffuser


    0 Not allowed!
    I've noticed that several people (like myself) are looking at ways of limiting the current (from HOB filters) in their tanks so as to not stress the fish and plants. Lots of different ideas have been tossed around from limiting water intake to using a rheostat to slow down the impeller in the pump... but I think you'll find this quite a bit easier and pretty much for free as most of you probably already have everything you need to do this little project.

    Supplies needed:
    20 OZ (591ml) Life Water/Gatorade style thick plastic bottle
    Shears or heavy duty scissors
    Box Cutter or Sharp Knife
    Emery board or sand paper

    That's all ya need!



    First you need to remove the label from the bottle and wash the inside AND outside of the bottle.

    MAKE SURE THAT YOU RINSE MANY TIMES TO REMOVE EVERY TRACE OF SOAP!!!!!

    If you want to remove the label glue you're going to have to fill the bottle with very hot water, cap it, then scrub the glue off the outside with, again, very hot water and an abrasive kitchen scrubber.

    If you don't want to bother with the glue you need to plan your cuts on the bottle so that the glued area is the part that goes over the rim of your tank so it's not in the water.



    Now that it's clean it's time to section the bottle into three pieces. Check out the pic below. Find two ridges on your bottle, one near the top of the side of the bottle and one near the bottom. Using the valleys on the bottle will allow you to cut a straight line with your box cutter/knife and also the slight curving into the valley will give the diffuser the strength to keep from distorting from the flow.



    In my case I didn't want to scrub off the glue so the cut you need to make from top to bottom is right along the right edge of the glue. This edge is folded back twice upon itself. Now there's no hard set rule on wide to make these folded over areas and is based on how thick the rim of the tank is that you'll be using it on. I tend to just make them about 1/2 an inch and just eyeball it.



    Use your shears to round any sharp corners and such. Use the emery board/sand paper to smooth all edges that've been cut. This is a very important step as you don't want your more inquisitive fishes from injuring themselves on sharp edges. Sancho, my betta, actually goes into the diverter and 'plays' in the current.

    Some people put put some gravel in the diverter to act as extra material for you bio filter to load up. You could put phosphate remover in it, or peat. I wrapped a chunk of Java Moss around a bit of lava rock. This works out great for me as the moss drags at the water flow slowing it greatly plus the moss gets first dibs on the nutrients in the water.

    Now you may think "this can't work all that well" and it's good to question but here's a video that shows just how well this little thing works. This is my 1.5 gallon tank that's being filtered by a Marineland Penguin 100 Bio-Wheel filter. At it's best flow rate, the entire volume of water in the tank is being filtered about once every minute.



    If you want to diffuse the water more you can drill small holes in the diverter. But a word of warning! If you do this you have to make sure that EVERY hole been deburred or your fish could easily get cut!

    You can use .5L water bottles instead but the plastic is VERY thin and may not hold up over time.

    I hope that this has been helpful to you all. I do not take credit for coming up with this general idea but I do believe that my version is superior to all that I've seen.

    Sark

    1G Planted Betta tank, 1.5G Planted Betta tank, 10G Planted Swordtail Fry tank,
    10G Neolamprologus Multifasciatus (Shell Dweller) tank. Empty/Work in Progress 135G, 40GB, 2 x 20GL, 2 x 10G
    My aquarium (and more) videos on YouTube

  2. #2

    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    Nice, seen lots of tutorials about making these. But I think your the first one to mention needing to get rid of the sharp edges that the fish may poke into.

  3. Default


    0 Not allowed!
    Great info, thanks for posting it up. I'm sure it will help a lot of people as I've seen the topic come up a few times recently.
    Don't call it a comeback, I've been here for years.

  4. #4

    Join Date
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    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    That was very good!!! Well done!!!!
    Gayle

    "I like pigs. Dogs look up to us. Cats look down on us. Pigs treat us as equals"
    Sir Winston Churchill
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  5. #5

    Join Date
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    Thanks and your first gift!! - The Red Severum Eggs woo hoo!!! - Gayle My new buddy.  LOL - Lady Hobbs because you're always there to help! - gourami*girl A beer for my fellow canuck! - NickFish 
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    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    That'll work! Nice one!
    Ray Your Freindly Neighborhood,Fully Mod-ified, Self-appointed Pic Hound!! Need pics!!!
    Have you filled out your profile yet ?????????????
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  6. #6

    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    Wild Turkey mentioned this earlier but I haven't seen the rounding of the edges either, thanks!

    I also haven't seen putting gravel in it, java moss or the requirement to remove the glue.

  7. #7

    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    Thanks guys and gals! I hope it's of some use.

    I found out the hard way about rounding off points and sanding edges. Sancho got in a diverter I made to play in the current and got his fins shreaded. :(

    But he's all healed up and doing great and still loves to play in the current. :)

    Sark

    1G Planted Betta tank, 1.5G Planted Betta tank, 10G Planted Swordtail Fry tank,
    10G Neolamprologus Multifasciatus (Shell Dweller) tank. Empty/Work in Progress 135G, 40GB, 2 x 20GL, 2 x 10G
    My aquarium (and more) videos on YouTube

  8. Default


    0 Not allowed!
    i checked out that video, but is there anyway that someone cast post some pics of this installed and working? id like to get a better look at it installed and details on what its hooked to

  9. #9

    Default


    0 Not allowed!
    Quote Originally Posted by reds_21
    i checked out that video, but is there anyway that someone cast post some pics of this installed and working? id like to get a better look at it installed and details on what its hooked to
    It simply hooks to the tank rim and the HOB filter sits on top holding it in place. No adhesives needed, just gravity. :)

    Here's a simple illustration that I've made. This is a tank from the side and I think it's pretty much self explanatory. The diverter will be mostly submerged. As the water spills out of the HOB into the diverter it swirls using up a lot of the flow's energy. The water then diverts out to the sides causing more surface agitation than the filter would on it's own. This has the effect of helping with the oxygenation of the water as the turbulence at the surface causes more oxygen to become disolved into the water. Not a bad side effect. :)



    Sark

    PS: Here's another video of an earlier version of the diverter but still the same principal.
    Last edited by Sarkazmo; 06-23-2009 at 08:37 PM.

    1G Planted Betta tank, 1.5G Planted Betta tank, 10G Planted Swordtail Fry tank,
    10G Neolamprologus Multifasciatus (Shell Dweller) tank. Empty/Work in Progress 135G, 40GB, 2 x 20GL, 2 x 10G
    My aquarium (and more) videos on YouTube

  10. Default


    0 Not allowed!
    i see whats going on now, thank yo ufor that. i will definitley do this. as for the intake tube, what kind of media can you stuff in the bottom portion of the tube to lessen the intake pressure? i notice whn i feed the fish, most of teh food goes right in to the intake. (wasted food)

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