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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I will be re-doing two of my largest aquariums, the 72”X23”X24”tall indoor in a wall niche because viewing glass is scratched and my favorite the 72”X36”X24” tall sunlit because I wish to try out CO2 effect.
Like all my aquariums they had UGF on the front third of the floor and as I am quite satisfied I shall continue with UGF system. The UGF system in my favorite sunlit aquarium will remain unchanged except for connections to the intake of the power-heads will now have a place where I can introduce CO2, and the output spray pipe shall have a place at the start to introduce air.
I will start with DIY CO2, increasing CO2 slowly as I feel more confident with it. I will be using aeration during the dark phase. Plants grow well in my substrate, and a UGF has a good habit of converting a lot of mulm into soluble plant food. Yet I shall be monitoring the nutrient levels and shall be adding fertilisers if necessary.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
DAY-1 Made a small pond outside with a polyethylene sheet over bricks and ground a foot deep, put in some sand and took out all the plants and planted them in the sand. Siphoned the sand from top of the UGF grid, using a 1” stiffish tube into a drum with few UGF grids on the bottom and a tall tube. Attached a submersible pump to the tube and started it. Hope the bacteria in the sand will live long enough to be reused back into the aquarium. Got rid of the old plant substrate and rubbed the entire interior of the aquarium with vinegar and washed it out. Left the exhaust on to dry out the interior. I found the UGF grid of the aquarium intact and nothing under it except some fine sand.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
DAY-2 My cousins were visiting me so could not work on my project. Sent of an order for plants:-
Hygrophila Polysperma (green) - 5
Hygrophila Polysperma (variegated - pink) 10
Ludwigia glandulosa - 16
Rotala wallichi (green) - 5
Rotala macrandra - 20
Echinodorus red flame - 2
Java Fern - 2
Java Fern Windelov - 1
Anubias barteri var. nana - 2
Anubias azfeli - 2
Echinodorus tenellus - 3
Java Moss - 1 bunch
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
DAY-3 Made my own diffusers for my DIY CO2. Took 14” length of ½” pipe and with 3 hacksaw blades made slits on the central 8” length. Rolled some 5mm foam around the slits. Took 9” length of 1” pipe, made a hole on the side for fitting a 6mm pipe, then put the length of the pipe over the foam covered portion of the ½” pipe and using 2 reducing sockets, one at each end, made the 1” pipe a jacket for the foam covered portion. Sealed the entire thing with PVC glue, leaving a little more than an inch of the ½” pipe protruding from the ends. Fitted the 6mm PVC pipe to the outer jacket.

I made 2 such diffuser; one of each would be fitted after curing, between the UGF grid in the front and the submersible pump in the rear corner. The 6mm pipes from both the jackets will be joined to each other with a ‘T’ the third line leading to the DIY CO2. I hope fine bubbles of CO2 will be drawn into the suction of my submersible pump and after being further chopped-up be forced into the spray-bar under pressure and then into the aquarium and in the process get dissolved in the water.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
THE INTERVAL I got stuck with my DIY/CO2 system. The DIY/CO2 got big on me and I started rethinking. Posted my thoughts in the DIY forum for help re: DIY CO2 ……………. NIGHT STORAGE. Scrapped the diffusers for my DIY CO2 that I had made and I am going to restart with the new system.

My UGF will be nearly the same as it was with the slight change that the spray bar output (along the rear bottom) will be pointed towards the front, hopefully pushing most of the fish muck towards the front unplanted area for pickup.

I am going to add to the rear wall of the aquarium a small acrylic trough 2” X 2” X 6” long as surface skimmer. Put ½” sponge pad in it and a power-head at the bottom drawing the water out of the trough into a spray bar along the rear wall pointed downwards. The two spray-bars (the other from the UGF) together will replicate a river type flow from the rear to the front through the planted area.

The DIY CO2 supply will be connected to the venturi of the skimmer power head. The DIY CO2, stored under the aquarium, consists of the following:- A Sealed Tank which acts like a diffuser and is also a storage of CO2 during the dark period. This sealed tank has a slotted 1/2" pipe at the bottom of 20L plastic can under 4'' thick sponge. The slotted pipe connected to the venturi of the power-head of the skimmer filter in the aquarium with a 6mm PVC pipe. Another pipe from the top of the sealed tank is connected to the aquarium with a no-return air-line valve to retain the DIY/CO2 in the sealed tank at night. The power-head of the skimmer is going to be wired with my aquarium lights. 4 staggered 5L plastic cans of DIY/CO2 connected in series to the sealed tank will be the CO2 generation.
 
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