Estimative Index for 180 gallon? - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-15-2005, 05:55 AM Thread Starter
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Estimative Index for 180 gallon?

I have been struggling to adapt the variations of the EI to my 180gallon heavily planted/heavy fish load tank. I would appreciate some help with developing a reliable routine. I am using micros and macros from greg watson's site. Algae battles are getting old.

180gallons + 30 gallon sump for wet/dry filter
CO2 injected at 30ppm with pinpt pH controller


Thank you in advance
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post #2 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-15-2005, 06:08 AM
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Depending on the amount of water a week you want to change, I would start with
Day1) H20 change 1 1/2Tsp KN03, 1/2Tsp KH2P04
Day2) 30 to 40ml Trace
Day3) 1 1/2Tsp KN03, 1/2Tsp KH2P04
Day4) same as day2
Day5)same as day3
Day6) same as day2
Day7) same as day1

Make sure C02 is getting maximum desolution, and crank it up during photoperiod off at night.

Try that for a week or two, thing's should improve, you should start seeing it within a day or two.

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post #3 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-15-2005, 04:45 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the help. I have been leaving the CO2 on at night. Any particular reason to turn it off?
Thanks again
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post #4 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-15-2005, 05:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by radafmd
Thanks for the help. I have been leaving the CO2 on at night. Any particular reason to turn it off?
Thanks again
My question is, Is there any particular reason to leave it on at night? do the plant's benefit from it? other than wasting C02, although it is relatively cheap, the question still remain's. 180g tank, thats alot of fert's and C02, you really only need it at photoperiod, and lot's of it.
Burning it at night with the high level it should be, it can get to a deadly level for the fishie's, that is another reason.

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post #5 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-15-2005, 08:49 PM
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I have recently hooked the ph controller to a timer. Just to prolong the CO2 bottle(with a wet/dry filter in our tanks, O2 level at night is NEVER a concern). Works fine. It goes on 1.5 hours before the lights come on so the Co2 is at full strength as soon as the light comes on. I shortened the photo period to 8hours because I find plants don't need a long photosynthetic period(stem plants close their leaves). Discus did not complain about ph swing. Minimal algae issue. It is a 100gallon VERY high fish load. I don't dose KNO3, but K2SO4 for K+. Fish waste provides more than enough NO3(3/4 - 1 lb of frozen food per week).

When you have algae problem, doubt your CO2 level, it might be lower than you think it is. The way we measure KH, the reading is almost always lower than actual. PH controller/monitor has error range as well. When plants don't pearl as much as they should, and algae growth is rampant, try upping CO2 a bit.


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40w T6 ODNO4x, no CO2. Discus grow out.
10gallon Tonina tank, 2x15w T6 ODNO 4x
---------------------
I will do aquascapes after I collect all the plant species and grow them to perfection.
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post #6 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-16-2005, 01:58 AM
 
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How much lighting do you have? In my 150g with 5 discus and cardinals I was dosing 1-3 ppm of nitrate but when I started feeding a little more I no longer have to dose anymore. In my opinion EI is good for High light smaller tanks were using up to double the ferts and doing 50% water changes is fine. I have had great results with nitrate in the 2-5ppm area whereas a lot of people using IE shoot for 10-20 which IMO is overkill and a little harder on the fish. I prefer to test and dose accordingly, write it down and after a couple weeks youll be able to see what youll need to dose from looking at your past results. I just test now and then to double check.
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post #7 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-16-2005, 06:19 AM Thread Starter
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It is 180gallons with 12 medium discus and approx 20 other various fish. I have 2.2 watts/gallon running 10.5 hrs/day.
CO2 off at night definitely makes financial sense as I have gone through a 10lb bottle every month. My only concern was the pH swing for the discus (Shalu answered that question).
Shalu, do you dose micros and phos?
Freeflyer, what do you dose?
Thanks
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post #8 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-16-2005, 06:41 PM
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Yes, I dose lots of micros(both plantex CSM+B+IRON and Flourish) and lots PO4. I found after I started dosing high PO4, the glass does not need cleaning AT ALL forever. WfxXx's schedule is good except monitor your NO3, you might want to substitute part(like 1/2 tsp KNO3 and 1 tsp K2SO4) or all of KNO3 with K2SO4. I have 12 medium/large discus plus many smaller fish in 100g.

1 10lb CO2 per month sounds high even with wet/dry. Could be a leak somewhere. Even when I had a leaking reactor, I got 3 months on the 100gallon with controller 24/7.


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post #9 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-16-2005, 09:15 PM Thread Starter
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The algae on the glass is my biggest problem! I've been struggling with nitrates in excess of phosphates (20 or 30 to 1)and you may have given me the answer.
Lance
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post #10 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-17-2005, 03:59 AM
 
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Im runnin co2 at about 20ppm, 25drops enema and 1/2 t potasium phosphate on even days, 20ml trace on odd days(i mix my trace 1T csm+B and 1T mag with 500ml), wc every 10-14 days.
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post #11 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-20-2005, 05:00 AM
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Relying on pH controllers when the lights are on can cause issues, make sure the pH reading is the same with the light on as it is when its off.

Stray current(lights in particular) often causes false positive CO2 levels=> test say more is there than actually is in reality!!

One of my fellow locals here has 13 discus and a 180 gal tank and has some mild algae issues we are working on.

He finally got his CO2 issue addressed.
We are adding 1/2 the KNO3 dosings.

He is not feeding as much as Shalu.
Another local, Bob, has 13 in a 120 gal and adds about 1/2 the total N from fish and the other from KNO3.

As long as you do not get above 70% of your total N coming from fish waste, you can still get enough K+ from KNO3.

Adding some K2SO4 will not hurt though. Dose it after the water change, about 1 teaspoon.

Crank the CO2 when the lights are on.

Add 3x a week: 1/2 teaspoon of KNO3, 1/4 of KH2PO4

Traces: 3x a week: 30 mls

Trim well, prune and clean, attack the algae and clean off equipment well, keep filters clean and you should have things in much better shape in 1-3 weeks.

Main thing is to stop new algae growth, if you do that, then you can beat any algae.

This will account for a heavily fed tank, you might not add 1lb a week like some folks, but Shalu does more water changes to make up for that.

The N comes in as NH4 waste which is a good way to get algae but with the water changes, he's able to get away with it.

I and at least one other person have done NH4 dosing purely, no NO3 dosings.
We did this with daily water changes, no algae.

Larger tank tend to requitre more work should something go wrong, therefore less light, slower growing plants etc, water changes get to be an issue, but water is cheap and once you start, it genmerally does not take any longer to do 25% vs 50%. Once you get more experience, you can vary the routine and not do weekly water changes but rather 2 weeks and guess in between the water changes like you do with weekly routines.

I just suggest weekly as it solves problems easier for many folks till they get things back on track. Most come to ask these questions because they are havign issues, not becuase they have great plant growth and want to do less water changes.

When they complain they have all this plant growth and pruning, then we suggest less light, plant choice changes etc.

Slowing a tank down is relatively easy, but a good re set and default is somethign folks need to see as we all screw our tanks up and get algae at some point due to neglect, so knowing what to do there and how to fix that is a good thing.

Regards,
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post #12 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-21-2005, 05:40 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks Tom.
I'm two weeks into a struggle with BGA that is slowly but surely covering every plant in the tank. Haven't tried a blakout or maracyn yet but those are next.
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post #13 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-21-2005, 06:38 AM
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Switching a pH controller on and off with the lights is almost self defeating. The whole idea of having one is to maintain a constant pH level 24/7, at night, very little CO2 is being used as it is, but without the controller, your going to end up with pH swings to a varying degree depending on the tank, surface agititation etc. With a wet/dry, I'd imagine the swing is rather severe, something most would want to avoid.


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post #14 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-21-2005, 09:29 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by radafmd
I have been struggling to adapt the variations of the EI to my 180gallon heavily planted/heavy fish load tank. I would appreciate some help with developing a reliable routine. I am using micros and macros from greg watson's site. Algae battles are getting old.

180gallons + 30 gallon sump for wet/dry filter
CO2 injected at 30ppm with pinpt pH controller


Thank you in advance
I drive by Vacaville 2-4x a week. I can tell you I can stop by and tell you what you need to do much easier. Takes about 15 minutes.

BGA is a nuisance, but hardly tough to get rid of.
I'd get things good and clean, filters, keep the plants pruned.
Then do the 3 day blackout , turn off the CO2 and increase the surface turbulance.

I think I can help a great deal with increasing the CO2 use efficiency.
I agree with Glass Gardens about self defeating using a pH controller, virtually at all.

I know many that simply use them as pH monitors and by pass any control functions.

pH swings: let's everyone get some thing straight here, this in terms of CO2 and pH, it is an illusion, it's not an issue and never was nor ever will be.

Don't believe me? Try doing a large 75% water change with tap water(say a pH of 8) with tank water that's a pH of 6.5. Do your fish die or seem stressed? Do they get diseases from water changes????Then the pH drops back down to 6.5 an hour or so later.

What happens 2x everyday in tide pools? What happens every day in densely planted lakes? pH swings of over 2 full units are common in nature where there is dense plant growth.

pH swings due to increases in buffers, such as adding a lot of baking soda will kill fish.Acidification due to decomposing waste and other correlations that effect pH are often considered the real causes rather than pH movement itself.

Adding CO2 gas is not the same as adding sodium bicarbonate.

We do not add CO2 to control pH, we add CO2 to fertilize the plants and make them grow, they only use it during the day.

If we wanted to control pH alone, then adding buffers and other acids would do the trick.

But clearly that does not work, guess why? Plants want CO2, so give it to them when they need it.

Regards,
Tom Barr



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post #15 of 18 (permalink) Old 03-21-2005, 03:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by plantbrain
I drive by Vacaville 2-4x a week. I can tell you I can stop by and tell you what you need to do much easier. Takes about 15 minutes
.

Man that would be like the POTUS stopping by as far as I'm concerned, take him up on it and remove the carpet he walks on as a shrine

Quote:
Originally Posted by plantbrain
I agree with Glass Gardens about self defeating using a pH controller, virtually at all. I know many that simply use them as pH monitors and by pass any control functions
I run my controllers 24/7/365, are you saying I would be better off not using it at all?

Quote:
Originally Posted by plantbrain
pH swings: let's everyone get some thing straight here, this in terms of CO2 and pH, it is an illusion, it's not an issue and never was nor ever will be.

Don't believe me? Try doing a large 75% water change with tap water(say a pH of 8) with tank water that's a pH of 6.5. Do your fish die or seem stressed? Do they get diseases from water changes????Then the pH drops back down to 6.5 an hour or so later.

What happens 2x everyday in tide pools? What happens every day in densely planted lakes? pH swings of over 2 full units are common in nature where there is dense plant growth
Wow, talk about blowing conventional wisdom out of the water. I'm under the assumption that the ph swing in nature occurs much slower than it does in a confined volume of water and rapid swings are supposed to be harmful to fish aren't they? I do large water changes (50%) weekly and I adjust the refill rate so that the CO2 injection can keep the pH level more or less stable. Have I just proven that assuming does indeed make ...?

Do you cover this more on your site? It's a good thing to have an epiphany on a Monday ya know.

This has got to the most enlightening thread I've read for quite some time Tom, please do some follow up when you have time.


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