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Old 09-16-2014, 10:47 AM   #1
xydan
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Jumping into CO2, DIY Yeast over Pressurized


So I've been fidgeting with an attempt to bring my 29 High G tank to life and have decided that, for now, my lighting is sufficient for my tank but I lack CO2.

I've consider the yeast approach over pressurized CO2 because I think it's going to be overall best for me. (College student and looking to move in about a year or so.)

However I am scared of the "inconsistent" flow of co2 pouring into my aquarium, I don't really want to wake up to dead fish. The reason I chose this setup was because of: terms of cost, and ease. But I feel that I may essentially lose a lack of quality in terms of growth for my plants.

Any advice on what I should look out for when making the project, when said project is introduced into the tank, and other helpful add ons that can save my fish in the future. Any advice or guidance is welcomed and I have not decided yet on methods on how to start said project, so any links to success projects are also welcomed!
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Old 09-17-2014, 02:04 AM   #2
BDoss1985
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Gassing your fish with DIY isn't a common thing. But to help with gas exchange add a bubbler with a timer to come on at night when the lights are off.

When I was doing DIY I had one of those 3in1 diffuser/checkvalve/bubble counters from Ebay worked great at the output of my filter. Now there's so many diy co2 things out there the caps for bottles with holes and valves... I had a drill and silicone lol
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Old 09-17-2014, 04:13 AM   #3
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Where would I find a timer to add to a DIY CO2 yeast system?

Here is the system I'm planning on making. Seems like something I can start within a few days once I'm done with learning how I should dose nutrients.
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Old 09-17-2014, 04:30 AM   #4
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Because DIY CO2 is never as consistent as pressurized CO2, I suggest that you limit your lighting to low to low-medium light. This will make any BBA problems be less severe than they would be with high light. If you use 25-40 PAR at the substrate level, you shouldn't have BBA so bad it becomes a major problem, and you will get much faster, better plant growth than you would have without the CO2. If you can afford it, use Seachem Excel in addition to the CO2, to further discourage BBA.
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Old 09-17-2014, 04:49 AM   #5
burr740
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For that size tank I would use at least two 2 liter bottles, with staggered start/change times. It's much easier to maintain consistent levels with multiple bottles. The biggest concern with DIY is not gassing your fish, it's algae caused by fluctuating amounts of CO2 being delivered.

Also a leak free system is critical. Dont use silicone or any other adhesive, it's not worth a crap in the long run. Even if it seals off initially, it tends to break loose after you've taken the cap off a time or two. Sometimes you wont even notice it.

Use this method instead.



15/64" hole
Push tubing through
Insert the connector, which expands the tubing in a tapered manner
Push it firmly back into the cap, hard, as far as it will go.

No mess, no waiting to dry, 100% no leaks.

Here's my set-up. For the "adapter" I used a combination of check valves and air tubing connectors that come with those cheap discard-a-stone diffusers, like you see in the picture










More extensive details can be found on page 3 of my journal thread (link in sig)
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Old 09-17-2014, 06:56 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hoppy View Post
Because DIY CO2 is never as consistent as pressurized CO2, I suggest that you limit your lighting to low to low-medium light. This will make any BBA problems be less severe than they would be with high light. If you use 25-40 PAR at the substrate level, you shouldn't have BBA so bad it becomes a major problem, and you will get much faster, better plant growth than you would have without the CO2. If you can afford it, use Seachem Excel in addition to the CO2, to further discourage BBA.
My current lighting is the "Coralife Aqualight T5 Freshwater Dual Lamp Fixture" on a 29 G High tank.
Currently going to switch to an "Fluval?" AC HOB Filter 50, and I'm going to "remodel" my tank so it is better suited for a planted tank.

I've had my tank running for a year with little care but I feel I'm up for the challenge and ready to deal with maintenance that is required for a planted tank.
My aim overall from the very beginning of this hobby was essentially be able to hit medium plants, like the Ludwigia's and try to aim for a nice carpet of some fore-ground plant.

Note: After a quick research of what BBA... it's sad to say I have some already. =/ It's not HUGE, but it shows.
I'm assuming this is because of lack of nutrients and or CO2. *showing on some Anubias leaves*

Burr740

If you have spare time, I was wondering why the extra bottle was needed (clear one). And more than likely I'm going to follow your set-up for the sake of a no-leak system.
I'd rather be safer than sorrier. Probably was going to start off with 2 bottles as you advised, and was planning on switching 1 bottle most likely weekly.

Also gotta say, I love your tank. It looks gorgeous!
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Old 09-17-2014, 03:06 PM   #7
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Thanks for the compliment

The clear bottle functions as a gas separator and bubble counter. If any crud goes up the tubing from the yeast bottle it drips into the separator bottle and does not enter the tank. A bubble counter is just that, it allows you to see how many bubbles per second (bps) the system is generating. This is a must have for keeping a close eye on the rate of production.



I have each bottle going into the gas separator separately, that way I can see exactly what each one is doing at any given time. But you can also combine them with a T fitting, and have only one line going into the gs, and one line going out to the tank. Another thing, dont skimp on the check valves. In addition to one on the line going into the tank, use one on every yeast bottle. That way you wont lose pressure on the whole system when you disconnect one.
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Old 09-17-2014, 10:13 PM   #8
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Oh... Okay. That makes a lot of sense now. But would the addition to a gas separator take longer for the CO2 to travel to the tank, or am I wrong?

And definitely going to be using check valves where I have to. Thanks for the heads up!

One more question, I noticed in your Journal you used a powerhead to distribute the CO2 to the rest of your tank. Would this be a solid way to do so? I don't mind investing in the powerhead, but I honestly don't know what other pro's it brings to a freshwater tank besides distributing CO2.
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Old Yesterday, 12:25 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xydan View Post
Oh... Okay. That makes a lot of sense now. But would the addition to a gas separator take longer for the CO2 to travel to the tank, or am I wrong?
Initially when you first set everything up, having the gs bottle will mean an extra hour or two (guessing) before the whole system is pressurized, and CO2 is actually going into the tank. Otherwise it is a total non-factor. I would most definitely include one.


Quote:
Originally Posted by xydan View Post
One more question, I noticed in your Journal you used a powerhead to distribute the CO2 to the rest of your tank. Would this be a solid way to do so? I don't mind investing in the powerhead, but I honestly don't know what other pro's it brings to a freshwater tank besides distributing CO2.
Benefits of a powerhead are circulation, and added filtration if you use a pre-filter sponge.

As a diffuser, the powerhead is working well. I think it is best to "pre-diffuse" the co2 first though. That way the propeller is working against a bunch of tiny bubbles instead of one big one. In the journal I had a piece of regular cotton ball stuffed tightly into the end of the line. Now I have a 1" piece of chopstick. The bubbles are finer and it lasts a lot longer.

Lots of people with DIY only use a cotton ball, chopstick, or a cigarette filter, and that's it. Then place the diffuser under some current, or a filter intake for optimum dispersion. This works OK, but you lose a lot of CO2 off-gassing at the surface. Imo DIY is limited enough already, so you want the absolute best diffusion possible.

Not sure what kind of filter you have, but Aquaclear HOBs make a great diffuser by themselves, due to their unique design. I have one on a 20 gallon with the co2 line going directly into the intake (pre-diffused w/chopstick). Zero bubbles, which means near 100% dissolution. Here's a pic




There's also a hole in one of the pieces above the motor that some people run the line into. You can google around and find how to do that, and about a million other ways to diffuse diy co2.

A reactor is best if you have a cannister filter, or they can be run with a powerhead too if you dont mind the additional "gear" inside your tank. Again, google around you can see dozens of examples.

Regardless how you do it, the goal is to have the finest bubbles possible, in the water as long as possible. Big bubbles go straight to the surface and pop before dissolving.


** Edit - I just noticed in that other post that you actually do have an Aquaclear HOB, so I would definitely use that. Stick a piece of cotton ball or chopstick in the line and you'll be good to go.
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Old Yesterday, 07:18 AM   #10
xydan
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Got it! So added a GS to my notes when I do my system!

I plan on purchasing this filter when I have everything running because I've heard loads of great reviews on it!

I'll probably google around and see the pro's of having a Powerhead in a freshwater build. If I don't find it suiting I'll just run it up my intake haha.

I also wanted to ask one more generic question, regardless of whether you are an expert or not.

Concerning planted tanks, I occasionally see some tanks with 1 or 2 driftwoods. I currently have 3 all of which have some form of anubias latched onto them.
Is there any reason not to have too many driftwood in a planted tank?
and
A generic list of what plants are great to cover driftwood with?

Sorry in advance that I'm being so greedy, I'm just trying to take advantage of a well fed mind, as I was told before in my life: there are no stupid questions.
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Old Yesterday, 12:32 PM   #11
burr740
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No worries, mate. This forum has been so helpful to me, Im glad to share my very limited knowledge whenever I can.

One of the main differences between using a powerhead (or any type of diffuser) vs a reactor, or AQ filter, is with the latter, there is no sprite water effect - ie, zillions of tiny bubbles throughout the tank. Some people dont mind it, but it can be quite a distraction. When you have near 100% dissolution, there are no bubbles to speak of.

In my 75 using the powerhead, the mist is very fine, but it's there. In the 20 using the AQ filter there are no bubbles. Given the choice I'd use the AQ every time. If not for the fact that Im heading toward using a reactor in-line with a canister filter, and later on a pressurized system, I would have bought a big AQ for the 75 a long time ago after seeing it's efficiency on the 20.


As for driftwood, you can have as much in there as you like. Plants that will attach are Anubias, Java ferns, mosses, Bucephalandra, and probably some others. That's just the ones I know of.
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