Best way to add CO2 to a 120cm tank

Discussion in 'Carbon Dioxide (CO2)' started by misscaretaker, 16 Sep 2008.

  1. misscaretaker

    misscaretaker Member

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    As the title suggests, I have a 120x40x40cm tank and I'm thinking of going down the pressurised CO2 route. However, I'm concerned about getting the distribution right on a tank this size. At the moment I'm running a Fluval 405 with 2x36w tubes. I've only used the Nutrafin system on my smaller tank so know very little about the practical side of adding CO2. I'm not going to do this for a couple of months so I want to make sure I getting all the right stuff first. Am I right in thinking that 2 diffusers are better on a tank this size? Also,would a spraybar help with distribution? Basically, any help on doing this would be great, esp the best way to set it up on a largish tank!
     
  2. JamesM

    JamesM Member

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  3. misscaretaker

    misscaretaker Member

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    I've got an external heater too so would running the inline reactor aswell as that reduce the flow enough to warrant another filter or powerhead? Would one of the JBL or Bioplast systems be OK or would I have to go down the self-build FE route? I don't want to buy a system and find I'm changing it in 3 months!
     
  4. ceg4048

    ceg4048 Expert/Global Moderator Staff Member

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    Hi,
    In general more diffusers are better but on a 50Gal you ought to be able to get by with a single external diffuser. This size tank however eliminates the JBL system or even a DIY system from serious consideration if you are planning on growing the more exotic species or carpet plants. On the other hand if you just wanted to grow a tank full of Hygrophilas or Ludwigas then these systems might be fine. As usual it depends on what vision you have for your tank. How does the tank look in your minds eye? That will determine the type of equipment that will either be compulsory or that you can get away with.

    An FE How To can be found in this Tutorial: FE CO2
    A more expensive option if you don't want to go the FE route is to join the BOC and then collect (or have delivered) the cylinders from any BOC distributor: BOC CO2 Cylinder Sizes
    There are also third party cylinder suppliers/refillers. Ask around at local pubs or welding supply shops.

    Yes, external heaters and external diffusers do take their toll on flow rate. Ideally you'd like a flow "rating" of 500Gal per hour/2000LPH or more but this may not be practical due to size and available space. In that case get the biggest that is practical but be aware that depending on what you want to grow you may later have to supplement the flow with a powerhead. Remember that you can use multiple smaller filters as well as a single large one. Flow rates are additive so that two filters each rated at 1000LPH accomplish the same as a single 2000LPH rated filter.

    It's been my experience that on larger tanks, combining high flow, while distributing that flow from the filter's effluent across the back of the tank using multiple spraybars generates a better circulation pattern than the single "point source" effluent of a lily pipe. The bars are not very attractive at all, so if this is important to you then avoid them and just use the lily pipe.

    Cheers,
     
  5. Dave Spencer

    Dave Spencer Member

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    In my 120cm I have two Tetratec 1200s runnining with liy pipes fitted at either end of the tank. The outlet of one of the filters has an Aquamas reactor fitted.

    I find that having the outlet with the reactor exhausting along the back of the tank, where most of the plant mass is, and the opposite side exhausting across the front of the tank is giving a good distribution at the moment. There is a swaying of the plants in all four corners.

    Spray bars would be more effective, but vanity gets in the way sometimes.

    Dave.
     
  6. misscaretaker

    misscaretaker Member

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    Tbh, I'm not a huge fan of carpet plants, and with 6 corys and 2 clown loach they'd appreciate a more open substrate to fiddle about it so a carpet wouldn't last 5 minutes!What I'm after is a lush jungle type set up not necessarily the really exotic plants, but with plenty of free swimming space too (wanting your cake and eating it too springs to mind!). I can see how spray bars could look a bit rank so I may stick with the outlet I have. I'm not trying to recreate a professional/Amano tank, I haven't got the skill for that, so would a JBL be suitable for this as it seems so much easier to buy it all in one go!
     
  7. ceg4048

    ceg4048 Expert/Global Moderator Staff Member

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    If the light is kept reasonable and the plant choices are within reason then the CO2 uptake demand will be minimized and the smaller CO2 systems can be used effectively since your consumption will be relatively low. JBL do a variety of systems though so perhaps you could give a link to the unit (or a model name) that you are thinking about and we can better assess.

    Cheers,
     
  8. George Farmer

    George Farmer Founder Staff Member

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    I've had good results with a Rhinox 5000 into a 1200lph external filter inlet. 2-3BPS.
     
  9. misscaretaker

    misscaretaker Member

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    I'm looking at the JBL profi 2 as it has a solenoid. I've just had some plants delivered from the Green Machine, but my Angels have unexpectedly spawned in the tank the plants were for... :rolleyes:
     
  10. GreenNeedle

    GreenNeedle Member

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    I still say the best way is to source the compenents seperately. When you buy a kit you often get some items that you end up replacing and as the kit was more expensive then you end up paying loads more than just asking questions of people where to buy the stuff.

    FYI. I use disposable cannisters that you can buy for £10 in halfords (The same size that are sold with D&D labels on for £17!!!). I bought my regulator from WeldUK.co.uk, the solenoid, needle valve and hose from Aquarianversand/Lunapet on ebay and the diffusor/NRV/bubble counter from Aquatic Magic on ebay - total £100 or a bit less. JBL profi is more expensive than that and you would probs end up replacing some bits.

    AC
     
  11. misscaretaker

    misscaretaker Member

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    I have thought about going down that path, but I'm not au fait with all the bits and pieces and am worried that all the bits I buy won't fit together! At least with a complete system, I know it'll all fit properly.
     
  12. aaronnorth

    aaronnorth Member

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    take a look here

    viewtopic.php?f=20&t=2747
     
  13. misscaretaker

    misscaretaker Member

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    Thanks for the link, I'd read this before, but couldn't remember the name of the topic! With a bit of luck (it's my birthday in 2 weeks) I'll soon have enough for all the bits for this and an external filter for my 60l!
     

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