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post #1 of 20 (permalink) Old 12-09-2013, 12:16 PM Thread Starter
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just venting

Since my partner isn't a fish person and I need to vent about my tank ibe decided to fo it here.
Nove 18th a had a beautiful 56 gallon column with happy healthy plants and fish. It had been up and running for a year. When I set it up it took just over 3 weeks to cycle with everything new. During that cycle I could see changes eat day. On the 18th my c02 dumps killing most of my fish several plants. I was able to get 5 fish out and one stubborn german blue ram is still in there. My readings are the same now as they were on nov 19th. Im not done wc I only feed the gbr a pinch every few days and still no change. I brought some lava rocks over from my 26 nothing. I know theres no answer to this no quick solution so like I said just venting.
Thanks for listening
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post #2 of 20 (permalink) Old 12-09-2013, 01:12 PM
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So are you trying to establish a bigger bacteria colony so you can restock?
There are the correct species of bacteria in a bottle. Read labels and look for Nitrospira species of bacteria. Don't waste money on anything else.
With the proper use of this sort of product and a thriving plant colony you could restock pretty much all at once.
If you did not use one of these products, but just had the plants growing really well you could restock pretty fast, too. The plants can be a big part of the bio filter.

Did you find out why the CO2 dumped? Was it the end of the bottle?
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post #3 of 20 (permalink) Old 12-09-2013, 01:26 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks Diana
Yes the c02 was at the end of the bottle. I had let it run out several times with no problems but then all of a sudden nightmare. The only things I've added is prime and nite out. I have several plants in there sword jf moss crypts and they seem to be fine. Im going to my gav fish store tomorrow and ill look for the bacteria you've suggested. Thanks this is just so frustrating
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post #4 of 20 (permalink) Old 12-09-2013, 02:39 PM Thread Starter
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Hi Diana just called my lps they suggested (special blend) im picking it up tomorrow
Thanks
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post #5 of 20 (permalink) Old 12-09-2013, 04:51 PM
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What kind of regulator you are using for CO2?

Michel

Plants and algae grower.
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post #6 of 20 (permalink) Old 12-09-2013, 05:07 PM Thread Starter
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Hi Michael
Im not really a all I know is it was brass. I sold it the next day
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post #7 of 20 (permalink) Old 12-09-2013, 06:53 PM
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Partobe, I hear ya buddy. It can be frustrating. Many times I've temporarily quit the hobby. Or let tanks go without any maintenance except what's needed to keep the fish alive, letting the plants suffer and algae grow freely. It may be months before I get my head straight and am willing to give it another try. Then I come back with a vengeance, find answers, and solve the problem.

But I've been especially unlucky with pressurized CO2. Tubing popping off barbs. Hard connections that just won't seal, or that initially seal but leak later. Failed solenoids, check valves, and needle valves, even when using top quality parts. Two tank dumps due to leaks draining a 20lb. cylinder much faster than expected. The best runtime I've ever gotten out of it is a pitiful three months. I've NEVER achieved a reliable and leak-free system, something always goes wrong no matter what I do. And have probably spent $600 on trying to put pressurized CO2 on a single aquarium, only to have 90lbs. of CO2 leak out into my room; with only 10lbs. ever making it into the aquarium.

I don't mean to discourage anyone or suggest that pressurized CO2 is impossible. But at least for me, I finally said I've had enough, no more.

Instead, I've been working on making DIY work better, and what I suppose one might call "medium-tech". Simply put, you don't need 30ppm CO2 to grow plants or prevent algae. Even 5ppm will cause plants to grow a bit faster, but more importantly, far healthier than if they had no supplemental CO2 at all (or just Excel). Or go for 15ppm if you want faster growth. Or anywhere in between. You can put a single 1G DIY bottle on a larger tanks than are considered impractical for DIY, with medium light, go 2-3 weeks between changing the DIY bottle, and get great results.

DIY fluctuations? No problem. Running a single bottle DIY at these medium CO2 levels, I can let it fluctuate enough that I actually see plant growth visibly rise and fall a bit with the CO2 level. Yet no algae appears unless I let it fluctuate further still. Mix a new single bottle with more yeast providing 30ppm, and much smaller fluctuations trigger algae. I've gone back and forth with this, multiple times on multiple tanks, and it's always the same result - the higher the CO2 level is, the more sensitive the tank is to fluctuations. Running at 30ppm (or higher) as typically suggested is actually more troublesome. Ain't that a stinker?

For almost a month, I've even been running my 46G at high light, with a single 1G DIY bottle, at 15ppm. Partially because folks say you can't, and I'm betting you can. Whereas medium CO2 levels work great with medium light, I'm finding doing the same with high light is admittedly pushing it. But it is at least possible. My results have been improving as I tweak various things (other than light and CO2) and I'm going to keep it this way for at least a few months.

Now this has at least partially been a rant. But seriously, "medium tech" doesn't get much consideration. People tend to start at one extreme or the other. Then often get frustrated and switch to the opposite extreme. [Partobe], you appear to be doing this now in going from high to low tech. You might give a "medium tech" tank a try. The more I experiment with them, the happier I've been.
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post #8 of 20 (permalink) Old 12-09-2013, 07:01 PM
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low tech = low headaches. Turn that tank into a riparium and sell your Co2 rig

:-)
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post #9 of 20 (permalink) Old 12-09-2013, 07:12 PM Thread Starter
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Hey Darkcobra
Thanks buddy
Im definitely do as you said jumping from one to the other. I was so upset about the death's of my fish I decided that was it. Id much rather replace a plant than I would a fish. Part of the reason(besides the deaths) it was easy for to switch was I have low tech plants only in my tank. Java fern crypts moss and 2 swords. If I could find a lps with the med tech dyi kit id definitely be interested. As for as me doing it myself well if you knew how challenged I am when it comes to putting anything together you would be saying Patrick please don't you will blow up your apartment. I called the pet store that I've been using for years and trust they suggested I try (special blend) with the nite out that im using now. Hopefully that will move things along. Ill definitely post here if it does
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post #10 of 20 (permalink) Old 12-09-2013, 07:13 PM
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Ditto on the low vs high tech false dichotomy.

I might eventually try C02 on a tank, but it'll most likely be a plant only tank as I'm not willing to risk stock to problems. Eh, maybe endlers, I always have an excess of those little buggers. My tanks have been inching up from low light to medium light over the years and I've been really happy with the balance I've reached. I get good growth but no so much that I'm a slave to the tank or risk having things crash if my attention wanders for a couple weeks.
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post #11 of 20 (permalink) Old 12-09-2013, 07:13 PM Thread Starter
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Hey
Crcarlsontech
I sold it the next day. :-)
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post #12 of 20 (permalink) Old 12-09-2013, 07:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by partobe View Post
Part of the reason(besides the deaths) it was easy for to switch was I have low tech plants only in my tank. Java fern crypts moss and 2 swords.
They'll grow nicely in low tech for sure. Especially if you have a good "dirt" substrate, which actually produces a bit of CO2. Gravel and other inert substrates don't have that advantage. And with either, if you want just a little better/faster growth you can still supplement with a little DIY CO2 to suit. Mix and match, you can get any result or maintenance level you want.

Quote:
Originally Posted by partobe View Post
If I could find a lps with the med tech dyi kit id definitely be interested. As for as me doing it myself well if you knew how challenged I am when it comes to putting anything together you would be saying Patrick please don't you will blow up your apartment.
LOL! I'm not DIY challenged, but still went through the worries about certain disaster with Stef. DIY CO2 is pretty easy though. A guide or two, a few questions, plus a good method of sealing the tubing in the cap (which I posted here), and I have faith you can succeed.

The only thing you need a tool for is drilling a hole in the bottle cap. If you want to avoid that too, there are some ready-to-use devices available I've seen in some of the fancier LFS. But I never paid much attention, those are usually very small, run out quickly, and therefore require too much maintenance. There are some better kits and individual parts (like fancy caps) on Ebay these days, try searching "diy co2 cap" for some examples.
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post #13 of 20 (permalink) Old 12-09-2013, 08:03 PM
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DC speaks the truth.

Casual dabbling in any hobby does not encourage the same level of appreciation for when we find breakthroughs, but the heartache in disappointment is equally felt.

With the internet, the knowledge and human support systems are there so long as we learn to tap into them when needed. You must see it when people from all over chime in supporting your thread.

Don't lose hope.


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post #14 of 20 (permalink) Old 12-09-2013, 08:08 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks knotyoureality
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post #15 of 20 (permalink) Old 12-09-2013, 08:11 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks Darkcobra
Thanks for the link. I did check it out and at some point may give it a shot. Right now I would be thrilled if the tank would just cycle.
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