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Minnow Filter Ideas??

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  • Minnow Filter Ideas??

    I am having a hard time when I use my wet dry vac to clean out my minnow tank. The tank is a steel barrel, about 25 gallons, and may have 300-400 minnows in it. My wife makes me clean out the "stuff" in the bottom of the tank, as she says it stinks up the wash room. When I git ready to vaccum out the at the bottom of my tank lots of minnows get sucked up into the hose and into the vaccum tank. Needless to say, this is a pretty hard ride for some of them, and they don't always survive. I can just pick them out of the vaccum, but it is a lot of trouble, and if I miss some they really stink up the house in a few days.

    Does anyone make a filter to keep minnows from being sucked up into the vaccum? This is a real problem for me, as I rely on the minnows for my fishing and trot line fishing, and they are not cheap. Especially the gold fish.

  • #2
    How about rigging up your own filter using window screen?
    I decided to change calling the bathroom the "John" and renamed it the "Jim". I feel so much better saying I went to the Jim this morning.


    • #3
      why not just cut a piece of 1.5'' plastic pipe and cap the end. drill a series of small holes in the cap and this will strain out the little fellas.

      if this is too restrictive you can install a bushing on the plastic that will bush it up to 2'', 2.5'' and drill more holes. once again this will allow more air, water flow.

      when did they stop using worms

      i'm a city slicker

      phoebe it is


      • #4
        like was suggested a piece of window screen or even 1/8" or 1/4" hardware cloth depending on the size of your minnows and size of the 'stuff' your sucking up would work real well i'm guessing.

        Another option that i'm not sure you'd want to explore but it works real well is what is used for aquarium gravel cleaning.

        It works excellently because it is powered by either your faucet or your hose and has enough suction to pick up everything you would want to pick up on the bottom on the tank but not enough to pick up fish. It's just what i use for aqauriums and is great and will work for what you want it to but it's a little more costlier option that the hardware cloth. If you just visit your local aquarium shop or pet store they should be in stock for 20-25ish dollars.


        • #5
          cellardoor, i looked at that web site on the siphon, and fill valve. doesn't appear that there is a back flow preventer.

          there is a real potential for mixing your potable drinking water with the fish water.

          can't believe that the health dept., building and safety, or the local water district has not picked up on this defect.

          i don't believe an atmospheric vacuum breaker would be legal in this case. an r.p valve would make it way too costly for anyone but a professional to purchase.

          other plumbers jump in for your thoughts.

          phoebe it is


          • #6
            I concure with Rick. While the devise looks like it will solve your problem I see no provision to protect against back siphonage. Here is a breakdown of the parts:


            I have emailed the manufacture to see if this item has any type of backflow devise built in. I will post their reply here once I receive it. If the devise does not have a backflow protector it is both dangerous and illegal to connect to your faucet.

            "Somewhere a Village is Missing Twelve Idiots!" - Casey Anthony

            I never lost a cent on the jobs I didn't get!


            • #7
              Gentlemen, this device works the same as a siphon type spray gun for painting or the type used for feeding you lawn with a garden hose. The water passing through the device creates a vacuum in the tube that is put into the gravel. As long as the water is running it will siphon the tank out. Stop the water flow and it stops sucking. Even if it did create its own siphon effect and keep going when the water was turned off it would not back feed into the faucet, it would be closed. LOL I have a slightly larger version of this device for cleaning the bottom of my Koi pond. Now with all that said, I would not waste my money on a thing like this "again" they just don't work worth a dam. Screen wire over the end of the vacuum hose will do the trick and only cost a buck.
              info for all: --- "I like long walks, especially when they are taken by people who annoy me."


              • #8
                If you're using koi for bait, you must be after some pretty big fish!
                Guess the crane experience sure helps to haul them out after you hook 'em!
                Practicing at practical wood working


                • #9
                  dan. the real issue is that the device hooks up to a potable water source and it's possible for the potable and fish water to mix. anytime you have a direct connection between potable and non potable water you need a backflow device of some sort. it can be an air gap of 1'' or more, a vacuum breaker, a combination on check valves, a reduced pressure back flow preventer, and so on.

                  the way this device will suck water back into the city potable suppy is a long shot, but can and has happened, thus the code.

                  if the person was using this device and was sucking water from the fish tank at the same time the pressure to the house dropped, such as a fire hydrant was being used outside, or water was shut off to the building or area, a negative pressure would be created. this would create a siphon back into the potable water. soon everyone in the area would be drinking fish water

                  every pull out type of faucet, hand held shower head common to a kitchen sink is required to have a backflow preventer. if the sink or shower was full of wastewater/ dishwashing water, stoppage and the hose/sprayer was submerged while turned on and there was a drop of pressure, you'll have the same affect. sucking up whatever was in the sink or shower. the reason a regular faucet or shower head doesn't require a backflow preventer is that the outlet of the shower haed or faucet is 1'' minimun above the overflow level of the fixture.

                  every dishwasher and washing machine has them built into the fill valve assy. the water is actually directed into an air gap assy. that is concealed into the machine. toilets have a critical level on the fill valve that is at least 1'' above the water level and overflow assy. of the tank.

                  it sounds very hypothetical but it all came about during the great fire of san francisco in the early 1900's. turned out a very sick and eventually dead guy was soaking in his bathtub during the fire. back then the tub spouts were in the wall of the tub below the overflow level of the tub. the valve was still on and the water was siphoned back into the water mains. the firemen that were fighting the fires were drinking from the hoses to cool off. they too eventually died of the dead mans disease so it's rare, but can and will eventually happen when all the stars are alinged. thus the purpose of a backflow preventer. even all newer (1983 on) hose bibbs require a back flow preventer. most people don't like them and try to remove them. but it keeps the hose from sucking up fertilizers when watering the lawn.

                  tried to keep it short, but it's an interesting history of cross contamination, backflow preventer.


                  lesson #2 next week
                  phoebe it is


                  • #10
                    Re: Minnow Filter Ideas??

                    This place probably has the stainless steel wire mesh screen that you need no?


                    I would go with a very fine mesh obviously. The main factor to figure out here is what size mesh will allow the waste through, but keep the minnows where they belong haha. May be a tough task, but wire mesh should do the trick for you. Good luck