all around newbie, dosing thread 25gallon - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-21-2010, 02:21 AM Thread Starter
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all around newbie, dosing thread 25gallon

im new to the planted tank and after reading greg watsons guide i wanted to get some input on the dosing regime im about to start. im going to do pretty much verbatim the barr ei strategy, with kno3 3x, kh2p04 3x, seachem flourish 3x, with the equilibrium after the water change at the end of the week. is the flourish what i should be using for traces? im using redsea's turbo bio system. im probably going to do the diy powerhead and soda bottle method until i can get pressurized. i have amazon swords, jungle val that are producing daughters and HC in the foreground, all of which are growing, but very slowly. i can see poor growth in the swords because of the thinness in their leaves. i assume thats iron, but i dunno. i have been fighting hair algae for the past week so im guessing there is some imbalance of nutrients that the dosing might take care of. i have 2bags of eco complete with gravel and 2 24w t5s ho. its a 25gal with a 30 hob filter, also is there any benefit to putting the filter on the side rather than the back because of water circulation? any input on anything?
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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-21-2010, 03:18 AM
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Well, start there, but monitor the tank by eye and by test, and if you see something that looks questionable, question it. Test tap water (if that is what you are using in the tank) and the tank when you start.

I use CSM+B ( www.aquariumfertilizers.com ) for traces, and I add a little extra iron.

Water movement: Set up the tank they way you want it, then turn loose some flake fish food. Something that sinks slowly. See if the water movement is right. The biggest problem will be to get as much of the CO2 as possible distributed around the tank. Wherever the equipment set up does this would be my choice for optimum set up.

Here are some things to look for that might modify the dosing. Each situation is different, so what works for me may not be the best solution for you.
If you already have things running and the tank stocked, what is the NO3 level right before a water change? Is the fish food already supplying enough nitrogen? If the plants are using it all up, and the test is usually way down in the single digits to 0 ppm, then dose per your research. If the fish food is already supplying all the nitrogen the plants want there is no point in dosing more.
Similarly, the Equilibrium. If the GH is already where you want it, and is not dropping between water changes, then you do not need to add more calcium and magnesium. It may be that the fish food is supplying enough. Note that Equilibrium has a lot of potassium. If you decide to reduce or not use the Equilibrium you will probably have to increase the potassium.
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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-22-2010, 07:23 PM Thread Starter
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thanks diana, yeah im using tap water that i think is ok. i will definitely use the csm+b for traces 3x a week, how much should i dose? i have some old leaf zone from api that ill try supplementing with the traces that has iron and a lot of potassium, maybe so i don't need to dose anything after the water change. my tank is stocked with black mollies and some falsely sold flying foxes, which is my fault. ill be ordering sae online from now on. is there anyplace you like to buy them? anyways im not feeding them anything to try and get rid of the hair algae build up, and ill be taking them out once i get the plant ecology working properly. i have moved the heater next to the hob filter on the side and i like the setup. detritus and wastes that normally get stuck in corners are moved to the center where i can remove them. i feel like water flow is throughout the tank more like a canister set up, only more in a more circular motion. the co2 will probably be moved to the other side. the nitrates have been at 0 since putting the 5mollies and 2 flying foxes 2 weeks ago. so i probably need to supplement more to get it between 5-10ppm at all times? my testing kit is getting an upgrade from the strips to the api master kit tomorrow so i will test the gh then. hopefully ill be able to find an iron testing kit at the same time. am i headed in the right direction?

i got the api "master" testing kit which actually doesn't come with dh or kh. my tap water's ph is a bit high at 8.0. will this hurt my plants? or specific types of fish? if so what are some good ways about lowering it? next paycheck ill be getting the gh and kh testing kits so hopefully ill post those results with some pics of the tank next week. i just purchased mono potassium phosphate, potassium nitrate, and csm+b from aquariumfertilizer.com. wasn't bad about $30. these expenses pile up tho. anyways any feedback or thoughts about anything would be sweet thanks.

Last edited by wakewalking; 01-24-2010 at 07:03 AM. Reason: bought some new stuff
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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-30-2010, 09:27 PM Thread Starter
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Last edited by wakewalking; 05-09-2010 at 10:57 AM.
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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-30-2010, 10:40 PM
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Tap water pH says nothing about the GH and KH. Go get the separate hardness test (yes, it is not in the master test kit) but one box includes GH and KH. Read the label, they also sell these separately.

I have not had much luck with smaller bottles of DIY yeast CO2. 2 liter bottles work well. Other things do not. I would suggest improving that if it is not working for you.

Start dosing slowly, and see how the water parameters change. Test for whatever you have tests for.

I buy fish locally, not on line, so I am afraid I cannot help much, there.
If those are really Flying Foxes, not Siamese Algae Eaters, then get rid of them. They are pretty territorial toward each other, and sometimes get a bit pushy toward other fish. They are not good algae eaters. Even the real SAE is not all that wonderful against algae. Young ones are OK, but not when they are larger.
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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 01-30-2010, 11:59 PM Thread Starter
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ok took everything out no more fish.

i used the 1liter bottle that came with the red sea turbo c02 kit but felt like i needed more as my results haven't been what i want. i have these 2 2liter hooked up to the red sea diffuser which shoots out tons of bubbles every 15 to 30 seconds. so its pretty crappy. i have the red sea diffuser now banded to a 20oz bottle as my reactor. we will see how it works. any ideas for small powerheads that would give me more power to diffuse the bubbles a bit quicker.


my nitrite and ammonia are all at zero. my nitrate is at 10ppm. i stopped fertilizing altogether after a week, the algae on the swords just went crazy. im starting to think i don't even need fertilizers, maybe until the eco peters out? also what glues or adhesives do you use for your bottles?

Last edited by wakewalking; 02-12-2010 at 03:54 AM.
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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-13-2010, 05:41 PM
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if your talking glues for sealing the tube to the bottle lid, my preference is to cut the hole slightly small, angle the end of the tube and force it in. Then i also buy tube couplings and put it in the tube on the inside of the lid, then the harder you pull the better it seals. no issues so far.
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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-14-2010, 02:47 AM
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I did the 'cut tubing at an angle and pull it through a small diameter hole' method and have not had leaks that way.

Algae going crazy suggests an imbalance of nutrients. Stopping altogether will simply stress the plants.
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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-18-2010, 02:14 PM Thread Starter
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getting pressurized c02 soon...

Last edited by wakewalking; 05-09-2010 at 10:57 AM.
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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 02-18-2010, 02:41 PM
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dont give up so easily. this stuff takes lots of patience, observation, tweeking, practice, patience, and did i mention patience? your tank looks good, i like it! just keep plugging away at it, things will fall into place sooner or later. i would start by tweaking you co2 recipe because your bubble count sucks. i had the same co2 setup as you with the same powerhead as you with no problems for almost a year. i just wound up upgrading my yeast bottles to 2 one gal. juice bottles which gave me lots of co2. i think that may help greatly. you may just need to adjust your yeast recipe... less yeast more sugar, more yeast less sugar???
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post #11 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-27-2010, 09:47 PM Thread Starter
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post #12 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-28-2010, 12:03 AM
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GLA CO2 System. First is link to RO/DI unit which is more for saltwater.
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post #13 of 14 (permalink) Old 04-28-2010, 01:12 AM Thread Starter
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post #14 of 14 (permalink) Old 05-05-2010, 07:34 AM Thread Starter
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These are my water parameters, I am wondering what the c02 is going to do to them besides being able to keep the ph constant because I will be get the ph monitor also. Also what is the safe way to lower the gh, I assume it should be at 80ppm? If so how can I do this? Any help please?

nitrites-0
nitrate-0
ammonia-0
gh-140ppm
kh-70ppm
fe-0
ph-7.2

Just did a water change and got these readings back. The only reason the ph is normal is because of the wood that is in the aquarium. I am wondering why did the kh swing? I am also thinking do I even need fertilizers, except for maybe iron, with such high levels of magnesium, calcium, and whatever other dissolved minerals are in there?
kh-214ppm
gh-140ppm
ph-7.3-7.4

Last edited by wakewalking; 05-09-2010 at 10:56 AM.
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