Mov'n on up to high tech! Advice? Comments and Questions? - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-27-2006, 07:13 PM Thread Starter
 
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Mov'n on up to high tech! Advice? Comments and Questions?

First, this post is a chapter from a book, I apologize about the length of it, but I am learning and wish to understand things before i jump into it.

OK I have decided to move it on up.. to go pressurized CO2. I want to grow things heh.. Maybe the aquarium hobby bedbug bit me and im still under its influence and drugs, maybe not. But I have budgeted the money for march and, sometime in march, assuming some investments come due properly, I will invest in the equipment. I plan at this time to step into it slowly, providing approximately the same CO2 to my aquarium as my hagen ladder does. I am already experiencing fish stress, so I think I have achieved a fairly good CO2 rate.

But after experiencing the growth from the plants that I saw after a week of having the hagen co2 system, i want more :P

I have already placed an order for some more supplies for myself. One of the biggest things I picked up was a 2x65w light for the 29g. This will include 1x10k and 1x 6.7k lights. So I will then have roughly 4.5wpg over the 29g and 3.25wpg over the 20g when i move the current 65w to it.

Getting the pressurized systems I can see is a bit of a expense for the equipment, but afterwards its less hassle, less mess, more accurate, and cheaper.

a jar of hyperactive yeast costs $6.99 at the local market. Refilling the 2.5lb cannister i plan to get will cost me $12 about half a mile up the street, or $8 if I travel in town (45 min drive each way).

I have heard issues of complaints about PH controllers. Locking up, needing calibration every few months, blah. So I believe I should just invest in a quality digital PH meter instead.


ok .. I am looking at this picture.. possibly this unit.
$85
$75 for a 2.5lb cannister at the local shop
$12 for a fill up.

$172 total, before shipping of the pressure control unit.


Reading this I can see how to operate the equipment.

Questions:

Question #1
The solenoid turns on or off the CO2 flow. My assumption here is that the solenoid when powered is open, when the power is off, it is closed.

would it not be wise to save the CO2 at night when the lights are off, and put this on the same timer as the lights? If it takes 15-30 minutes to bring the CO2 levels in the aquarium back up to what the plants like with the lights, but saves 13 hours of CO2 injection that is not utilized and could, probably will not, but could, cause harm to the fish.


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Question #2

CO2 delivery. I have ordered some limewood diffusers. Maybe i am not thinking completely sane here, but I am considering doing the following. Using a 3 way gang valve (using 3 way that i have purchased for a specific reason, i will get to latter) to split the co2 to the aquarium into two lines. 1 line would go into the hagen ladder that i already have in the aquarium. The other line would go into one of the limewood diffusers underneath the current of the spray-bar of my canister filter as described by Tom Barr.

Does this sound as an Adequate way of delivering CO2 to my aquarium? I really do not wish to build a reactor quite yet. That however may be a future addition, but after debates with myself, I thought that this would be an optimal way of doing this.

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Question #3.

I recently redid my 20gallon with a nice rich substrate. I would like to take some airline tubing and out of the 3way gang valve, run an additional line to the 20 gallon, placing my second limewood diffuser here, under another hagen ladder in this aquarium. I think that this would give it appropriate CO2 levels. Is this advisable? Is this plausible? Is this stupid? is it in anyway dangerous? I would need approximately 25' of airline tubing to do this.

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Question #4.

If I decide to do the above question #3 It would be my assumption that the 29gal would get 66% of the pressure, and the 20 gal 33% of the pressure. Is this accurate? Granted with the gang valves I could make inaccurate and clumsy adjustments, but in general, with the valves wide open, would this work?

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Question #5.
If i only run the 2.5lb canister in the day, when my lights are on. How long will this last if I supply CO2 to both the 29g and the 20g aquariums? How about just the 29g if I decide to not do this?

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Question #6.

Is there a better way to supply CO2 to both aquariums other than getting 2 complete setups for both? My primary concern is the 29g, and keeping it 'high tech' so that I can grow some finer plants such as glosso, ricca, etc.

Thank you all very much.
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-27-2006, 07:35 PM
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Question 1 - Use light timer to turn off CO2 at night, and omit the PH controller.
Question 2 - Won't work, because the two diffusers don't have the same pressure drop, so all of the CO2 will go to the one that presents the least restriction.
Question 3 - Same as 2 - can be solved by using a needle valve in each line
Question 6 - Use a manifold with separate needle valves for each diffuser or tank or both and it will work fine.

Hoppy
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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-27-2006, 07:49 PM Thread Starter
 
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So -- I would take out the bubblecounter / needle valve out of the solenoid, get a 4port from RexRigg with 2 plugs and 3 needle valves?

So then, what about the bubble counter, is it just not needed?
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-27-2006, 07:58 PM
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If you use a ceramic disc type diffuser you don't gain much by having a bubble counter - use the stream of bubbles in the tank as a guide. If you have an enclosed Rex type diffuser a bubble counter is desirable. Once you get things adjusted you don't need the bubble counter at all, just watch the plants, fish and any algae as a guide.

Hoppy
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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-27-2006, 08:19 PM Thread Starter
 
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Calling around to one of the local fish stores, that also does a lot with paintball. They will sell me a 1.25lb CO2 canister for $24.95, including my first fill up. And they will refill it for $2.50.. if I get a 2.5lb they will fill it for $4.50, and a 5lb for $6.

I *AM* space limited. a 2.5lb would fit, but it would take up a significant amount of room, combined with my cannister filter, it would take up all of the storage area thats available under the Aquarium.

Unfortunatly the stand for the aquarium doubles as a NOC, containing the wireless router for the house, my laser printer, my network switch, and my cable router, my print server, and a bit of clothing
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-27-2006, 08:28 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hoppy
If you use a ceramic disc type diffuser you don't gain much by having a bubble counter - use the stream of bubbles in the tank as a guide.
I gotta disagree here .. . . . I think the bubble counter (I have the milwaukee all in one) is VERY key to making those adjustments to co2. If I didn't have it staring me in the face, i could easily go from 1 bubble/10 seconds to 5 bubbles/second!
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-27-2006, 08:30 PM Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by esarkipato
I gotta disagree here .. . . . I think the bubble counter (I have the milwaukee all in one) is VERY key to making those adjustments to co2. If I didn't have it staring me in the face, i could easily go from 1 bubble/10 seconds to 5 bubbles/second!
So then how would one acomplish multiple tanks off the same CO2 tank?
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 02-28-2006, 02:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Solace
So then how would one acomplish multiple tanks off the same CO2 tank?

Talk to Rex.
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