TDS + immediate dose

jaypeecee

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Hi @Plants234

Many thanks for the feedback. I just want to focus on one statement made my Tom Barr and that is:

"Realize I have good flow and wet/dry filters and higher O2 than anyone with a canister filter"

I can't get my head around that. The dissolved oxygen in my tank hardly varies. It's typically 8 ppm. I didn't think it was physically possible to exceed 8.4 ppm dissolved oxygen at tropical aquarium temperatures and altitudes. And it's not that my test kit (JBL O2) only reads 8 ppm! I once measured around 2 - 3ppm in a live Daphnia or Moina culture that I was raising. Perhaps he's talking about atmospheric oxygen and that relates to dry filters but here I'm lost. What form does a dry filter take in the fishkeeping hobby? Or, more specifically, wet/dry filter. As Tom Barr's name is synonymous with planted tanks, these things obviously exist.

I will return to this - probably tomorrow.

JPC
 

JoshP12

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Hi @jaypeecee,

A friend of mine is a reef nut and when I mentioned this to him he had a giggle. Supposedly wet/dry sumps are old school tech by the reef community and they became nitrate factories (which reef tanks despise), so they stopped using them and moved to refugiums where they use a macro algae to outcompete algae in the display tank and to suck up excess nitrates and phosphates.

I also want to note that Tom mentioned he seals the tower of the sump - I don’t know how tight this seal is, but it’s sealed to minimize co2 degassing.

Here is what I thought might be the case: you pump your tank with co2 and then as the water passes through the trickle filter the oxygen that was consumed by whatever living thing is restored and some of that co2 is debased. Then that water comes back into the tank with a higher O2/Co2 ratio, rendering it safer for fish meanwhile pumping it with more co2 which will then repeat the process.

I am not sure though. I would be interested to hear if anyone else is using sumps and notices if they can put much more co2 in or not.

I am in the process of trying to up my co2 (looking for advice here too) because last time I did my fish gasped a bit ... my drop checker is not green when the lights come on; it turns green about 4-5 hours into the 7hour photoperiod. I started it 2 hours early today instead of 1 hour and it turned green earlier but not as early as I’d like.

The reason I am “concerned” is because I’m developing a bit of green hair algae in my moss close to the light and I may have seen a hint of Staghorn.

Do I just attempt to up it again or reduce the lights?

Josh
 

dw1305

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Hi all,
Supposedly wet/dry sumps are old school tech by the reef community and they became nitrate factories (which reef tanks despise)
The "nitrate factory" bit is just because trickle filters are so effective at nitrification, this is because oxygen is the prime metric in biological filtration and these filters have huge gas exchange surfaces.
so they stopped using them and moved to refugiums where they use a macro algae to outcompete algae in the display tank and to suck up excess nitrates and phosphates.
We've had this come up a <"few times on UKAPS">, I'm not a marine keeper, but if I was I would definitely go down the <"plants route">.

The other option I think that is still popular? Is the live rock/deep sand bed where anaerobic denitrification can occur. This may require the addition of a carbon source (the "vodka option").

cheers Darrel
 

Zeus.

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one statement made my Tom Barr and that is:

"Realize I have good flow and wet/dry filters and higher O2 than anyone with a canister filter"

I can't get my head around that. The dissolved oxygen in my tank hardly varies.

as Darrels says

these filters have huge gas exchange surfaces.

So where as canisters have a negative effect on the net [O2] wet dry filters will have a positive effect on the net [O2] and via verse on the net [CO2] for any given CO2 injection rate. I would agree with T Barrs statement as it makes sense - dont know if he actually measured the [O2]
The trouble with measuring the [O2] is how accurate is the test kit!!!!! If are tanks have no flow and we really on diffusion alone we don't have to measure the [O2] or [CO2] or any [fert] the laws for physics and command sense tell us there isnt enough getting to the plants in a high tech tank. The same follows comparing wet and dry filters and canisters and the resulting [O2] at any given location. Testing the [O2] and if it confirms the increase then the test is good, if the test doesn't confirm an increase [O2] to support sound theory then I would question the test first esp when our 'peers' also support the theory
 

jaypeecee

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Hi Guys,

OK, I'm awake now! I used to have a tank many years ago where the water ran across a channel at the top of the tank. In that channel was a rotating wheel. I suspect it was there to introduce atmospheric oxygen to assist with biological filtration. I'd forgotten about it. Regarding the absolute accuracy of any oxygen test kit, I'm not unduly concerned about that. What I think is more important are relative values. Is dissolved oxygen reducing or increasing and a test kit will indicate that, won't it? Indeed, that should apply to any test kit.

JPC
 

jaypeecee

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I am in the process of trying to up my co2 (looking for advice here too) because last time I did my fish gasped a bit ... my drop checker is not green when the lights come on; it turns green about 4-5 hours into the 7hour photoperiod. I started it 2 hours early today instead of 1 hour and it turned green earlier but not as early as I’d like.

Hi @Plants234

I have a few questions/comments:

[1] What is the volume of your tank?

[2] What are you using to inject CO2 into the water?

[3] Do you have a lot of surface agitation of the tank water?

[4] What are you using to distribute the CO2 in the water?

[5] Does your tank lighting ramp up or is it OFF/ON?

[6] What is the position of the DC relative to the CO2 injector (assuming it's an in-tank injector/diffuser).

[7] Have you done a pH profile, i.e. measured the water pH at regular intervals throughout the day? I know you've had some problems with your pH meter but, as I suggested, you could resort to narrow-range pH test kits.

That'll do for the moment.

JPC
 

JoshP12

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Hi @jaypeecee, I will provide all the details!

[1] What is the volume of your tank?
10 gallon aquarium

[2] What are you using to inject CO2 into the water?
Co2 regulator connected to a ceramic diffuser (in the tank)

[3] Do you have a lot of surface agitation of the tank water?
Hang on back filters and water is usually topped up so it’s pushing the water around instead of a large break.


[4] What are you using to distribute the CO2 in the water?
The diffuser is set up directly under the HOB filter. The bubbles swoop underneath the log I have and towards the front of the aquarium, then get caught in the current and either move up to the surface or distribute to the back. Not much gets to the left of my aquarium because of all of my hardscape (unless it swoops behind the log which some does); however, I have still seen some pearling on the anubias and java fern on that side. That side also has emergent growth (several pothos plants hanging over and an unknown trimming from my work that seems to be growing ... haha).

[5] Does your tank lighting ramp up or is it OFF/ON?
Photoperiod starts at 2:30 WITH a 15 minute ramp up; so, the full lighting power starts officially at 2:45. It begins the Ramp down at 9:30 and is off at 9:45.


[6] What is the position of the DC relative to the CO2 injector (assuming it's an in-tank injector/diffuser).
The DC is positioned at the back of the aquarium near the rotala rotundifolia --> I placed it here because the bubbles would need to circulate to make it there (for 1) and because I know that the concentration may vary on the left and I was less concerned with that side (would it really vary that much in a 10G?).

[7] Have you done a pH profile, i.e. measured the water pH at regular intervals throughout the day? I know you've had some problems with your pH meter but, as I suggested, you could resort to narrow-range pH test kits.

Yes I have and more so before I got the drop checker.
I watched the pH change as CO2 was injected and it went from 7.8 to the 6.6/6.7 mark that I wanted - and stayed there.

Here has been my co2 journey:
1) Blew the right gauge on regulator by accident. BPS was reducing throughout the day so I slowly upped working pressure until it stabilized. Got it.

2) Through this process cross-referenced KH and PH in aquarium (I always kept some almond leaf, peat, and crushed coral in the back).

3) My KH kept bottoming out regardless of my efforts to increase it -- realized my little bag of goodies was eating my buffer -- removed it.

4) Buffered my WC water up to the right KH ~4 ~~~~ I chose this so that my low pH was around 6.6 (good enough for my tetras, gobys, and because I wanted to keep some amano shrimp too).
4.1) Still reading about how pH changes with gases affect osmotic pressure etc BUT a lower concentration of H+ should affect something, even if its bacteria -- still reading (especially a lot of the links that @dw1305 has shared regarding the chemistry).

5) While doing all of this, we had a baby!! (woot woot!), and I got the TDS meter (the birth of this post) ... it was reading 1800 ms ... needless to say that was because I didn't make water changes or do anything for a while due to lack of sleep ... LOL

6) Upped CO2, then fish were gasping slightly (note my other post in this thread).

7) Reduced CO2 to a much nicer level, everyone happy.

8) Before I realized how bad that TDS was, I added 6 amano's and killed them because I forgot how to acclimate fish ...

9) Ok, stabilized the KH to 4 and decided my GH should be around 7/8 (no idea why ... then the perfect water post came up) ... decided to go with EI Ca recommendations. GH = 60 ppm, KH = 4dKH ~ 70 ppm --> 600 ms TDS ... that's the water.

10) Tank water is around the same with about 800 ms TDS now (over the next bit, it will go to 600ms about as low as I can get it).

11) Acclimated my amano's and neons yesterday with success (I could have waited another few weeks before I added these livestock but I went for it)!
Livestock: 11 neons, 2 rainbow goby and some shrimp. They all have territory and my parameters are very stable, even with me playing mad scientist --> everything is healthy and changes in predictable patterns.

12) Among all of these changes I noticed the green hair algae form in the java mass (it could be plants acclimating to CO2, it could be detritus build up from poor maintenance that triggered the population, it could be fluctuating CO2 levels. Now I have to eradicate the population.)
12.1) yesterday/day before is when I noticed a baby staghorn and then another one forming.


My intuition says the tank needs time to stabilize now with all of the new additions and with the consistent CO2 level (and that would be fine if I didn't notice the algae progressing) and with the appropriate water change and appropriate maintenance (I did a much needed clean of the filters yesterday too). With the addition of the new fish, upping CO2 may not be the best choice, but reducing the light seems like a solid idea, but I definitely seek advice.

If anyone sees any mistakes that I made in my process, please advise so I don't make them again!

Regards,
Josh
 

jaypeecee

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Hi @Plants234

Thanks for your detailed reply.

Somewhere in your post, I thought I saw mention of your bubble rate through the bubble counter but, try as I might, I've re-read your post several times but couldn't find what I was looking for. I am interested only because it gives an idea of how well your water is retaining the injected CO2. With the HOB filter, there is probably a lot of surface agitation. This is good in some respects as it oxygenates the water but also drives off CO2. As with lots of things, it's a balancing act.

JPC
 

JoshP12

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as Darrels says

I would agree with T Barrs statement as it makes sense - dont know if he actually measured the [O2]

In that same thread that I read, he mentioned he has an O2 detector hooked up (I imagine it like a ph probe of some kind - that's just me speculating).

Josh
 

JoshP12

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Hi @Plants234

Somewhere in your post, I thought I saw mention of your bubble rate through the bubble counter but, try as I might, I've re-read your post several times but couldn't find what I was looking for. I am interested only because it gives an idea of how well your water is retaining the injected CO2. With the HOB filter, there is probably a lot of surface agitation. This is good in some respects as it oxygenates the water but also drives off CO2. As with lots of things, it's a balancing act.

JPC

My BPS is about 5 bubbles for every 2.8 seconds --> I hesitate to say 2bps because it's not quite there (all done through my inaccurate timing skills :p).
 

Zeus.

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In that same thread that I read, he mentioned he has an O2 detector hooked up (I imagine it like a ph probe of some kind - that's just me speculating).

Just remembered when T Barrs had his open day vid there was a mention of an O2 detector - I think (haven't checked :oops:)

 

JoshP12

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@Zeus. Thanks for the video! He shows there using the wet-dry filter too and says they are way better than his old canisters; it makes me reconsider looking for a canister for my little and only 10 gallon (if I go any bigger, I will definitely run a sump of some kind) ... stay with the HOB's (or use a HOB with the wheel).

Aside: My CO2 turns on in 30 mins or so; should I status quo, up the bps slightly, or reduce the light for this iteration (I am leaning on light reduction). Then in a few weeks, I may ramp it all up.
 
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jaypeecee

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My BPS is about 5 bubbles for every 2.8 seconds --> I hesitate to say 2bps because it's not quite there (all done through my inaccurate timing skills :p).

Hi @Plants234

That's just over 100 bubbles per minute (bpm). Obviously, the throughput of CO2 also depends on the bubble diameter but I suspect that most bubble counters use similar internal diameter pipe of around 4mm. If that's the case, then 100bpm is a lot of CO2 for a 10 gallon tank. I run my setup at a fraction of that figure and my tank is 125 litres. You must have a large CO2 cylinder. FYI, mine is 1.5kg. I suspect that your HOB filter is driving off a lot of CO2.

JPC
 

JoshP12

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Hi @Plants234

That's just over 100 bubbles per minute (bpm). Obviously, the throughput of CO2 also depends on the bubble diameter but I suspect that most bubble counters use similar internal diameter pipe of around 4mm. If that's the case, then 100bpm is a lot of CO2 for a 10 gallon tank. I run my setup at a fraction of that figure and my tank is 125 litres. You must have a large CO2 cylinder. FYI, mine is 1.5kg. I suspect that your HOB filter is driving off a lot of CO2.

JPC

I could reduce the flow rate on the HOB (both of them) and see if that changes anything?
 

JoshP12

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I stumbled upon this a thread by @Zeus. where he says,

CO2 off two hours before lights off is the general rules most folks use as the plants have had their fill and in the last two hours the pH will remain pretty stable. Having the [CO2] at optimal levels when the lights come on is most important to help prevent algae issues, best if you can have lower light intensity for the first 30mins as the plants get ready to photosynthesis at there full rate.

I also upped the needle valve very slightly and did not like the results -- I reset it back to original; I will set the CO2 to come on 3 hours before instead of 2 hours and see if I can it green before. If not, then I will continue ... I have this weird feeling that I will need a 5 hour prior --- any thoughts?
 

Zeus.

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CO2 off two hours before lights off is the general rules most folks use as the plants have had their fill and in the last two hours the pH will remain pretty stable. Having the [CO2] at optimal levels when the lights come on is most important to help prevent algae issues, best if you can have lower light intensity for the first 30mins as the plants get ready to photosynthesis at there full rate.

Well thats a quote of @ceg4048 that I quoted myself - I just recite it in his not being active ATM

I also upped the needle valve very slightly and did not like the results

What was the results higher [CO2] ? In pic below top left hand corner check the DC colour taken today I have had it going nearly clear in the passed. It may take a little time for the inmates to adjust to the higher [CO2] but at yellow green I have no issues, when I use to have it nearly clear some fish use to passout when I fed them in the excitement of the feeding frenzy but they soon recovered so to combat the fish passing out I use to feed them about 30-40 mins after CO2 off

My BPS

Have you seen D Wongs Vid

The 2hr Aquarist by D Wong is well worth a read IMO
 

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JoshP12

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@Zeus.

I attached a photo of mine just now: 5 hours into the cycle (greenest it has been).

I will find a way to upload a video of the set up as it might help - to see the flow of the bubbles etc.

I will check out those videos!!

Thanks!

I suppose I am a bit nervous to gas them; but I do not want this staghorn or hair algae to get out of control - I'll attach a pic of the staghorn (very small but developing).
 

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JoshP12

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@Zeus.,

Those Dennis Wong videos are fantastic - thanks.

In response, to his advice (and actually several others that I have watched), I will be reducing my lighting.

Find the minimum lighting for optimal growth -- I like that advice.
 

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