A few dumb DIY CO2 planted tank newbie questions - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 05-30-2005, 10:11 AM Thread Starter
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A few dumb DIY CO2 planted tank newbie questions

firstly when one mixes up the ol sugar/yeast brew in one's pepsi bottle, how does one store it for 12 hours or so (have spares) closed lid? dish towel over the top?

secondly after you hook up the new brew (about 13 hours old in this case) how long before it starts prouducing?

and last but not least this tank has been set up for a year or more with a java fern (now a java bush) & java moss and since the source water has a PH of 6.8, GH of 1 and KH of 1

I was using a buffer (KH powder raises carbonate hardness 4dkh/72ppm & keeps PH about neutral) so I did a 95% water change and the folling day a 50% water change no buffers, and hooked up the ol 2 2litre CO2 rig and started testing 2 or 3 times a day and after severl days I find the PH seems to be locked at 6.8 but my KH ranges from 7dkh to 10dkh (seems to like 8dhk mostly) seems kinda high CO2 levels from 33.3ppm to 42.8ppm

I know buffers can stuff up your test readings when using KH & PH test kits, but would a CO2 test kit be any better?
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 05-30-2005, 03:05 PM
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I set up my mixtures about a day or two before using them. Either I screw the cap back on LOOSELY to make sure no pressure builds up, or I use something flat and put it on top, like a stack of cards or a CD or a million other possible things that are small and flat on one side.

So that answers your second question... the bottles start producing after a few hours, but there is still a lot of airspace in them that needs to be replaced with CO2 which takes like a day or two, so therefore...

Not sure about the water hardness thing, I guess you are right and it has to do with the buffers. Over here ppl usually recommend to raise the kH with baking soda, hopefully someone else can chime in (water here has kH 10 )


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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 05-30-2005, 03:48 PM
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Here's what I did. I would make my mix(if you mix the yeast and a little sugar in a seperate bowl with the water heated to 104 degrees, wait 10 minutes then add it to the mix make it usable in a couple 4-6 hours) then attach it to a 2 or 3 way gang valve. Let the mix work then open the valve. Also, leave the old yeast in the bottle for up to a month. I also added 1 tsp protein powder, 1 tbsp molasses and it worked great in my 37 gallon with a very co2 wasteful Emperor 280.

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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 05-30-2005, 07:00 PM
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My Red Sea CO2 system, which is essentially pretty much like a DIY system, just said to hook it up to the tank after mixing it up but to not expect significant CO2 production until about 24 hours. Is there any harm in just hooking the system up and waiting for the CO2 production to kick in?
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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 05-31-2005, 02:34 AM
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Possible problem

Quote:
Originally Posted by joan
My Red Sea CO2 system, which is essentially pretty much like a DIY system, just said to hook it up to the tank after mixing it up but to not expect significant CO2 production until about 24 hours. Is there any harm in just hooking the system up and waiting for the CO2 production to kick in?
Maybe.

If the Co2 production begins but not at a good rate, it is possible that the Co2 gas in the airline to the fish tank will absorb totally into the water thus drawing tank water up the line. Once that water gets over the rim of the tank, gravity starts to aid in taking the water all the way to the gas bottle if the bottle is below the fish tank.

For that reason, it is best to keep an eye on the DIY set up until you can see that gas is being produced and some pressure is building up. I suggest keeping the generator on top of the fish tank until gas is going well, and the heat of the lights will help in getting it going also.

I do not know if that caution applies to the Red Sea CO2 system you mention.
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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 05-31-2005, 05:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by anonapersona
Maybe.
I suggest keeping the generator on top of the fish tank until gas is going well.
I would be cautious about putting my bottle above the tank. I have heard of the yeast mixture being sucked into the tank!!

I have a check valve between the yeast mixture bottle and my reactor, I find even if I disconnect the bottle the check valve stops the backflow of the water effectively.

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