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Old 02-24-2012, 09:40 PM   #31
HD Blazingwolf
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well light is almost as tricky as c02 except its easily changed. what do u consider high light? what do ur plants consider high light??

is it bright to you? sure.. does it contain PAR (photosynthetically active radiation)? of course it does.. but how much?
i dropped from 72 to 48 watts when i went to my new fixture and raised it 14 inches over the tank and had MORE PAR than my previous 72 watts sitting on the tank?? the other fixtures looked brighter to me but plants didn't care too much..

i've since upped to all 4 bulbs of 96 watts for 9 hours but i've gotten out of the whole HIGH light thing.. it really just boils down to more work.. my plants grow JUST FINE

i've also dared to inject more c02 than many individuals would care to inject for fear of killing fish. test with digital probes. titration kits, ph scales, calibrated KH water... which is all fine and good but i just watch my plants and fish now


so u can agree or disagree on lights, but a healthy system speaks for itself and there are more than one wya to achieve those results. u might go less light with a midday burst to achieve coloring but slow growth for lss maintenance, u might be trying to replicate the sun, u might be trying not to stress fish.

many different methods exist for different goals
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Old 02-27-2012, 04:51 PM   #32
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Step 1 - I added a ball valve and i lowered my flow. Within a few hours the drop checker was green. I was also able to move the spray nozzle lower so the water is flowing slowly over the plants.
How low can the flow be? Its a Mag7 and the ball vale is about 50%. You can see the C02 floating slowly thru the tank as compared to before when it was full blasts of C02. The fish are as happy, my ember tetra's are "schooling" more then ever. How slow is too slow, is there a way to figure this out?
Ill have to give it a few days before i know how the plants are reacting.

Step 2. Lighting i changed the lighting around a little so its on a little longer since i got the drop checker green. Ill also see how the plants react.
I also started EI over the weekend so hopefully i will find a good balance.


Step 3. Reactor (if neccessary and maybe as a test only) - I also have an old calcium reactor (besides the canister). I thought this might work better to try to get some more C02 absorbed before it reaches the tank. I will connect the return (punp side) to the top of the reactor (its on a stand and sits up right) and the bottom of the reactor to the tank side. So teh water will be flow from top to bottom. I am doing this in hopes that it will increase the time the C02 is in the reactor. Will this work? I'll add a picture tomorrow. Ill probably wait a few days before i attempt to add this. Should i still add bio ball to this config?

Thanks for everyones input.
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Old 02-27-2012, 10:34 PM   #33
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Don't turn it down too much. You still need some flow through the sump, and decent flow through your reactor to dissolve gas. You will need additional flow if you add the 2nd reactor. If you are still chopping bubbles, try adding the CO2 after the pump. This may reduce fine bubbles. I have found that micro bubbles from chopping does not get captured much in a reactor.


You will most likely have some bubbles in the tank, but continue to turn up the CO2 slowly; monitor your plants. EI dose. Give everything a little time.
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Old 03-02-2012, 03:32 PM   #34
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Thanks everyone for your advice. Here is an update. I added a reactor that i had previously. The setup is: C02 into return pump then pump into reactor then to tank.

Results: With less bps (hard to tell how much less as it was cranked up all the way, previously) I am able to get the drop checker to green towards the last 2 hours of the 8 hour cycle. The amount of bubbles is way less than it was previously. Even taking into account the fact that I am have a lower bps. Even when I crank it up (for comparison purposes) it’s not like it was before.
Once I sealed the sump and realized the best I could do at this point was focus on the tank (30kings), it helped me focus on the problem. Also the flow seems to be fine, the plants have a little sway to them and the fish seem happy. The Mag7 works prefect in this config (with the reactor). The ball valve is all the way open.


Fish are doing fine, Plants are growing, Algae is ok.

The only issue I have which I might post a new thread is: MY HC does not seems to be doing so great. Leaves are a little brown/yellow and its not growing like the rest of my plants.
I dose EI and my light are on for 8 hours a day. 2x55watts 8hrs(12-8pm) and 2 65watts 4 hours (5-9pm)

I included some pics...any stem plant suggestions?

Thanks again
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Old 03-02-2012, 03:39 PM   #35
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How long has the tank been set up for? Is it possible that the HC is converting from an emmersed form to a submerged form?
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Old 03-02-2012, 03:46 PM   #36
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I bought the HC from a LFS and it was in a tank in wool in a pot. When i planted it i left some wool attached to it, it was the only way i could get it to stay. Some of the wool is now coming up from the aquasoil.
Thanks
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Old 03-03-2012, 03:04 AM   #37
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I assume the blue tube is the old calcium reactor/ new CO2 reactor. I would personally turn up the CO2. If your drop checker solution is a correct 4dkh, it seems to me, to take too long to turn green. Mine turns in about 2 hrs. I run about 6-8 bps.

Your reactor is about the size of mine. Try adding the CO2 after the pump (no chopping). Insert it into the return tube prior to the reactor. Your reactor size allows for significant gas collection if you turn up the gas a bit. You should get better diffusion, and quicker drop checker change, and a reduction in micro bubbles (but not elimination).

The problem with chopping is that as you increase the bubble rate, you increase the 7-up look. That's where I was, until I switched to what I said above. My drop checker time did not change but I reduced bubbles considerably.
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Old 03-03-2012, 12:26 PM   #38
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and take out the bio balls. LOL they don't help IME
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Old 03-05-2012, 02:25 AM   #39
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Not so easy to take out bio balls. Water spills out everytime i open. My kids like watching them move around.
I don't understand why putting the co2 directly into the reactor will help. My feeling is that the chopping it up before it goes in the reactor can only help. Am I incorrect?
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Old 03-05-2012, 04:26 AM   #40
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Chopping is a very efficient way to dissolve CO2. Based on what you have said above, I think you should turn up the CO2 a bit. 6hrs for a drop checker change is too long, IMO. I don't know what your bps count is.

Remember, your initial post said you didn't think you were dissolving enough CO2. I felt your bps was too low. If you turn up the gas, the seltzer water effect will get worse. You posted in the begining that you don't care for this look. I don't either.

So, in order to add more gas, but reduce the 7-up look, you have to get a reactor, and add CO2 after the pump.

I had a similar dilema with the 7-up look. I wanted to maintain the CO2 saturation, but reduce the bubbles. I stopped chopping, and added CO2 after the pump. It seems to work.

You don't have to get all fancy with the CO2 line into your reactor. Just drill a small hole in the outlet tubing from your pump (just past the pump barb) so you can stick the CO2 tubing into the hole or use a connector barb from the sprinkler dripper systems and stick it in.

Remember, the reactor is not going to help much for micro bubbles (at least not enough for you to see the difference). I tried with my reactor. Reactors are for big bubbles.
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Old 03-05-2012, 04:56 PM   #41
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Sorry dont hate me, but....If i do what you say then i am hoping that the reactor will disolve (some/most) the C02 and bubbles for me, correct?
Wouldn't the reactor do better at dissolving the C02 bubbles if they are already a little dissolved already by the chopping process of the venturi impeller pump. I will have to go to HD to get that piece to put on my mag7. if the Mag7 is 1/2 output would that mean its a 3/4 thread?
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Old 03-05-2012, 07:45 PM   #42
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Dude, you are confusing me. Please restate what your goals are. I was under the assumption you felt the plants were not getting enough CO2, and you did not like the 7-up look??????

You are currently chopping bubbles. Do the eye ball check (Look in your tank). Are they all getting dissolved with your reactor???

You don't need a special part from the hardware store to add the CO2 line after the pump. Look at your system. See that soft flexible tube that runs from your pump to the reactor? Drill a little hole (1/4" drill bit) in that soft flexible tubing just past the pump, but still underwater. Stick the CO2 tube into it. Rubber on rubber holds very nicely. Since it is underwater, it won't suck in any air if its a little loose (Refer to an earlier post- I told you that your sump should be filled most of the way with water).

Also, if you drill the hole close to where the soft flexible tubing attaches to the pump, and decide to go back to chopping, you can just cut off the end of the tubing with the hole in it and reattach to pump. Or leave it-its underwater, who cares.
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Old 03-05-2012, 07:47 PM   #43
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Have you turned up your CO2?? If not, you are spinning your wheels......
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Old 03-05-2012, 08:06 PM   #44
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First of all thanks for all your help....
"I was under the assumption you felt the plants were not getting enough CO2, and you did not like the 7-up look??????"

Those are my concerns. Once I added the reactor, there was less bubbles and they seemed smaller.
This wkd i increased the bps and the dropchecker was green after about 4 hours.
So things are progressing, i still have less bubbles then before reactor. I was just trying to understand why not chopping up the bubbles was going to lead to an improvement. I thought the combo of chopped and reactor would lead to better solubility and less bubbles then just reactor. If you are saying the reactor alone will give me less bubbles and better solubility, i will test tonight with just c02 after pump/ do i need to change my mag7 propeller back to original?

Im i using the word Soluble correctly???
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Old 03-05-2012, 08:44 PM   #45
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Like I said before, reactors work better with bigger bubbles. Chopped micro bubbles get caught too easy in the water current. That is why you are just seeing the smaller bubbles. If you continue to turn up the CO2, you will end up with the 7-up look again. 2-3 hrs for drop checker change should be your target, along with how your plants respond, light, etc.

If you get the water flow desired, then you do not have to change the impeller.
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