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Thread: Ultima II Opinions?

  1. #1
    Tategoi Peppy's Avatar
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    Ultima II Opinions?

    I'm looking at the Ultima II to replace my pressure filters and will follow that with the trickle tower I already have.

    Saw an Ultima II at a shop where the Koi were all healthy, the water sparkling.

    Any opinions? Experiences?

    I also couldn't find the thread where someone suggested to shave off the edges of my steps (gravel pond redo) and I cringed at the thought of pulling back the liner but got the courage this morning and here is what I'm doing. Is that what was meant?

    What a job this has become.

    I hope shaving off the shelf edges won't give me less liner. In theory, I figure it will give more liner at the top?
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Ultima II Opinions?-shelves2.jpg  

  2. #2
    Nisai
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    What type of pressure filter do you currently have? I personally like the Ultima II. It is easy to maintain and does a pretty good job overall. The downside on all pressure filters is the head-loss, which in my opinion is quite drastic. For instance in my setup, when I run directly from the pump to my shower, I am pushing 9,000 GPH. However, if I divert that flow to the Ultima I get roughly 4000 to 5000 GPH flow.

  3. #3
    Tategoi Peppy's Avatar
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    Thanks for the feedback, Ootyboy.

    I have two BF 4000 (for up to 4000 gal ponds) from cal pump. I backwash a lot because I can't see inside them. To clean once or twice a month, I have to remove the 6 pads from each, wheel them in the barrow to the yard, and slap the pads on the grass until they're light again.

    They don't tell you how or how often to clean them.

    Then if you want to rinse the containers out, the bio balls fall out too.

    So are you saying the Ultima II is just another pressure filter?

    The guy was telling me how I wouldn't believe all the gunk that comes out of it and how easy it is to clean with my good clothes on and everything.

    He has so many fish living off two of these Ultima II's, I couldn't believe how great the Koi looked and how clear the water was. No way to know the parameters, but the Koi looked healthy.

    Are you saying that you run everything to a shower and bypass the Ultima II at times? Do you have a settlement chamber of some sort and a bottom drain?

  4. #4
    MCA
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    Honmei MCA's Avatar
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    If I were to ever use a bead filter again, first it would have a sieve in front to keep the pump from making debris into smaller debris...and to keep the bead filter from loading up with stuff I don't want in the filter to begin with. The only bead filter I would purchase would be an AlphaOne from GC TEC. I would only want floating media....never sinking media. Use gravity to help settle out solids every time you get the chance.

    By the way...why a pressurized filter? What about a nice fluild bed or even a bakki shower? They will for sure give greated DO than a pressurized unit.
    Koi keeping is not a belief system; it is applied science with a touch of artistry.

  5. #5
    Tategoi Peppy's Avatar
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    What is a fluid bed?

    I'm not into making anything complicated if it's a diy thing.

    I thought bakki showers were to come after some kind of other filter. I had read somewhere that bakki showers are great for the indoor ponds they were invented for but the jury was still out on outside ponds.

    I've seen the diy bakki showers somewhere on this forum and I wouldn't mind putting something like that together.

    But are they a good enough filter all by themselves or do you still need something before them?

    The reason I've been researching the Ultima II is that this guy swears by his and has a lot more fish than I do on just one of those filters.

    Do you have to use the bacteria house media or can you use bio balls in a bakki shower?

  6. #6
    MCA
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    What is a fluid bed?
    A commerical example is the Nexus wher air is blown into the main chamber of of K1 media and water. That fluidizes the K1 like pasta in boiling water. Many folks DIY their own versions.

    I'm not into making anything complicated if it's a diy thing.
    Your choice. I have Nexus and DIY Bakki House showers.


    I thought bakki showers were to come after some kind of other filter. I had read somewhere that bakki showers are great for the indoor ponds they were invented for but the jury was still out on outside ponds.
    Momotaro who brought the product to market runs huge ponds with very expensive fish...with his Bakki Showers. The showers work equally well outdoors or indoors. Outdoors you have less worry about splashing the water.


    I've seen the diy bakki showers somewhere on this forum and I wouldn't mind putting something like that together.
    There are several threads on this BBS about drilling out the crates for DIY showers and using several different types of media.

    But are they a good enough filter all by themselves or do you still need something before them?
    If those showers are good enough for Monmotaro's fish...good enough for any hobbyist.

    The reason I've been researching the Ultima II is that this guy swears by his and has a lot more fish than I do on just one of those filters.
    And you probably also find many other people that swear by other filter types. My fish and I love the Nexus and Bakki Showers.

    Do you have to use the bacteria house media or can you use bio balls in a bakki shower?
    I only have used BH so I can not tell you from first hand experience about others. It stands to reason that pumice, feather rock, lava rock (if it is real lava rock) should also work. I know folks have also used bioballs and other media in showers. Heck, lots of oyster shells should make a nice, calcium rich, media.

  7. #7
    Tategoi
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    Quote Originally Posted by ootyboy View Post
    What type of pressure filter do you currently have? I personally like the Ultima II. It is easy to maintain and does a pretty good job overall. The downside on all pressure filters is the head-loss, which in my opinion is quite drastic. For instance in my setup, when I run directly from the pump to my shower, I am pushing 9,000 GPH. However, if I divert that flow to the Ultima I get roughly 4000 to 5000 GPH flow.
    Hi Oot,

    What model pump do you have. A bead filter shouldn't cause the pump to drop off that much unless you are already in the high head part of the curve. (Above the 'knee'.)

    Bakki is getting lots of good comments but not many posts on the HUGE power drain that comes with them. The smallest pump I've seen on a Bakki is a 3/4HP pump. There are a vast collection of filter systems that work extremely well but will operate on half the power.

    A 3/4HP pump will cost $150/month out here. At the same time, take a look at your committment to energy conservetion and how it impacts our nation.

  8. #8
    MCA
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    I have a wave II 1/2 HP running two showers. I would rate fight the constant backpress of gravity to put water at the top of a shower...that the growing backpressure of a bead filter that starts getting dirty as soon as it is backwashed.

  9. #9
    Honmei KoiCop's Avatar
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    We've had two Ultima 6K's for four years. We backwash daily during Summer and EOD during winter. We love the job they do and how easy they are to keep clean.

    The first is on the Main Circuit: BD>sump>Cetus>Ultima>upflow J-mat bio-filters

    The second is on the Skimmer Circuit: skimmer>Ultima>Clarity

    Go for it.

    Just make sure that your Ultima is rated at a minimum of twice your gallonage, has adequate sump/vortex/prefiltration ahead of it, and supplemental bio-filtration after it.

  10. #10
    Sansai
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    "We've had two Ultima 6K's for four years. We backwash daily during Summer and EOD during winter. We love the job they do and how easy they are to keep clean.

    The first is on the Main Circuit: BD>sump>Cetus>Ultima>upflow J-mat bio-filters

    The second is on the Skimmer Circuit: skimmer>Ultima>Clarity

    Go for it.

    Just make sure that your Ultima is rated at a minimum of twice your gallonage, has adequate sump/vortex/prefiltration ahead of it, and supplemental bio-filtration after it."


    Don, this isn't aimed at you personally but..... Just playing devils advocate here, and everyone on all the boards already knows my opinion of pressurized filtration in general, I think you just made my case.
    Daily backwash, Needing bio after it, twice the "falsely advertized" gallonage(this is fairly common in the pressurized filtration world), not to mention the energy waste.

    Peppy, actually about any number of pressurized filters with media in it instead of pads would be better. Also just because someone elses water looks great in a specific circumstance doesn't mean it will work for you.

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