Newb to DIY CO2 - The Planted Tank Forum
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 02-20-2012, 01:08 AM Thread Starter
Wannabe Guru
 
Overgrowth's Avatar
 
PTrader: (1/100%)
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 1,003
Newb to DIY CO2

Hello everyone,

This is my first post on The Planted Tank Forum. I have experience with general fishkeeping and am still new to planted tanks but have some knowledge about them (balance of the 'three components' (light, co2, and ferts), lighting factors such as tank depth, type of light, etc.) So, my first planted tank attempt is a 20 gallon long and currently has amazon swords, dwarf hairgrass, crypt wendtii, and ludwigia arcuata. Since most of the plants I have require medium to high light, I bought a T5HO fixture (Zoo Med AquaSun). Considering the fact that a 20 gallon long is only a foot deep, I am only using 1 bulb (the Ultra Sun one). Currently I am dosing Seachem Flourish and API CO2 Booster (similar to Excel), and I know liquid carbon will not suffice. However, I do not know how to (efficiently) make a DIY CO2 generator. When I first tried to make one, the yeast mixture leaked into my aquarium, causing a huge disaster that lasted several weeks. Fortunately there were no inhabitants in the tank during that time. Now I want to be able to do it right, however, there are many things that I do not understand about DIY CO2. I'd like to know:

-What bubble counters, gas separators, and reactors are and how to make them (if I need them)
-How to prevent the spillage of yeast into the aquarium
-The most effective (cost and time-wise) method of diffusing the CO2 gas into the aquarium.

Could you also explain these concepts to me in the simplest way possible?

Also, since I am new to planted tanks, could somebody tell me if I am doing anything wrong? Thank you.

20 Gallon Long
Plants: Echinodorus amazonicus, Eleocharis parvula, Cryptocoryne wendtii, and Ludwigia arcuata (all from Petsmart )
Fertilization: Seachem Flourish
Substrate: Petco black aquarium sand with Flourish Root Tabs
Lighting: Zoo Med Aquasun 30" T5HO fixture with 1x Zoo Med Ultra Sun 6500k Super Daylight bulb
CO2: API CO2 Booster until I can do DIY CO2

P.S.: Sorry for the long post.
Overgrowth is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 02-20-2012, 02:56 PM Thread Starter
Wannabe Guru
 
Overgrowth's Avatar
 
PTrader: (1/100%)
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 1,003
Can anyone please help me?
Overgrowth is offline  
post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 02-20-2012, 03:16 PM
Planted Member
 
shortsboy's Avatar
 
PTrader: (9/100%)
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: Boston (Melrose), MA
Posts: 255
my setup: 2x2L coke bottles, holes drilled in lids, ~1 foot of tubing through each cap and sealed with gorilla glue. These go through a gang valve so I can change 1 at a time and not lose pressure (not that important but I like it). From the gang valve I lead to a third bottle (750 ml pop bottle). Tube from 2L coke bottles goes down in 3/4 of the way down in bottle, which is filled about 1/2 full with plain water. This is my bubble counter / spill-over preventer. If the systems build up too much foam it'll go into this bottle, rather than the tank. From here a piece of tubing through the top leads to my tank. I have a Fluval 404 canister filter that I pump directly into to break up the bubbles for me.

schematically (in crappy text drawing):

Bottle>---->Gang Valve>-----small bottle>--------Canister filter
Bottle>---->
shortsboy is offline  
 
post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 02-20-2012, 03:39 PM Thread Starter
Wannabe Guru
 
Overgrowth's Avatar
 
PTrader: (1/100%)
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 1,003
Quote:
Originally Posted by shortsboy View Post
my setup: 2x2L coke bottles, holes drilled in lids, ~1 foot of tubing through each cap and sealed with gorilla glue. These go through a gang valve so I can change 1 at a time and not lose pressure (not that important but I like it). From the gang valve I lead to a third bottle (750 ml pop bottle). Tube from 2L coke bottles goes down in 3/4 of the way down in bottle, which is filled about 1/2 full with plain water. This is my bubble counter / spill-over preventer. If the systems build up too much foam it'll go into this bottle, rather than the tank. From here a piece of tubing through the top leads to my tank. I have a Fluval 404 canister filter that I pump directly into to break up the bubbles for me.

schematically (in crappy text drawing):

Bottle>---->Gang Valve>-----small bottle>--------Canister filter
Bottle>---->

Thanks for replying! So the solution isn't all lost if the foam builds up?
Overgrowth is offline  
post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 02-20-2012, 03:43 PM
Planted Member
 
shortsboy's Avatar
 
PTrader: (9/100%)
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: Boston (Melrose), MA
Posts: 255
Now as for the other stuff in your post:

Bubble counter: A device used to count the number of bubbles per second going from your CO2 source into the tank. A way of quantifying the CO2 addition. Simplest form is a vessel filled with water, with line in from the CO2 source below the water line, and an outlet to the tank above the water line. When CO2 comes from the source it will emerge as a bubble from the inlet, and go to the outlet.

A reactor is a device to mix the CO2 with water in order to maximize the amount of CO2 that is usable in the tank. If the CO2 bubble goes in and promptly floats to the surface and into the air it didn't do you much good. There are a plethora of reactors out there, many more than I can describe here. Look up Cerges, Rex Griggs, Bubble Ladders etc for reactor designs. Some are better suited for DIY, others for pressurized.

How do you get CO2 into a tank using DIY? As I said above, I used my canister filter to chop up the bubbles. Other people put powerheads in their tanks, and have the bubbles pass through that. Others use a super-fine airstone or a chopstick shoved into the tube. Depending on your filter model, you can use it as a reactor. Aquaclear's work well for this.
shortsboy is offline  
post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 02-20-2012, 03:46 PM
Planted Member
 
shortsboy's Avatar
 
PTrader: (9/100%)
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: Boston (Melrose), MA
Posts: 255
if your mix is foaming up like crazy it's an issue; some foaming is expected, but it shouldn't become a problem. Two fixes: Use less yeast to start with, causing less foam, or don't fill your bottle so high. That'll leave more headspace in your bottle and should alleviate your overflow problem.
shortsboy is offline  
post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 02-21-2012, 01:14 AM Thread Starter
Wannabe Guru
 
Overgrowth's Avatar
 
PTrader: (1/100%)
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: Atlanta, GA
Posts: 1,003
Okay, thanks again for your help!
Overgrowth is offline  
Reply

Tags
None

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now



In order to be able to post messages on the The Planted Tank Forum forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.

Password:


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:
OR

Log-in










Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page
Display Modes
Linear Mode Linear Mode



Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

 
For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome