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Old 05-30-2013, 06:22 PM   #1
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Media tumbling

This thread is intended to discuss media tumbling. I use to run a fluidized sand filter on my reef. I liked the whole concept of fluidization. Didn't seem efficient to place things like GFO in a bag and in the sump. In a reactor my GFO turned too hard to pass water thru it within days because of my high calcium levels. I then started using Purigen in a cheap fluidized filter Lifegard makes. That worked great for Purigen, A small filter sock on the output caught the few beads that tried to escape.

So then, with a second Lifegard filter I began to explore what I could tumble in it to work with the Purigen and go after Phosphates.

Most GFO I tried ground to dust and then clogged up. Any attempt to put a foam pad or filter sock became clogged with GFO dust within 24 hours. Seems the GFO I tested isn't hard enough to be tumbled. Had the same problem in the BRS reactor. It also stained everything it touched.

Phosguard was even worse. It seems to make dust by looking at it. I couldn't even get it to rinse clean before being put in the filter. Even with just detectable movement of the pellets at the surface it still filled the tank with white smoke in hours. Did no damage to anything and cleaned right up, but it was a failure as a test. Post filter sock clogged in hours with the dust. This stuff is designed to sit in a bag somewhere.

Now I am testing Dr. Tim's biodegradable "pearls" in the filter. They fluidize perfectly and I am anxious for a few weeks to see what this source of carbon accomplishes. I have a protein skimmer on the outflow of the pearls to catch bacteria, so we will see.
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Old 05-30-2013, 06:57 PM   #2
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Great start Greg. I'm in a similar boat with my dual BRS reactor. Purigen goes great but the GFO just turns into a thick patty that needs to be dumped out. I have been thinking hard about what I want to do to replace GFO. Maybe chemipure?
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Old 05-30-2013, 07:03 PM   #3
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That's what happened to me. I even mixed the GFO with AGC and then some plastic beads trying to get it to work. Gave up.

Chemipure is expensive in the quantity I go thru with 500 gallons of water. The bio beads are also expensive from Dr. Tim, but I suspect these same beads are available in 50 pound bags in the water treatment industry. Suppose to work like Vodka by providing a stable carbon source.
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Old 05-30-2013, 07:07 PM   #4
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Yeah, mixed together gfo and my carbon to try to help...not to my liking. If those beads work out well, I wonder how easy it would be to get them...worry about that after the trial run. It is just frustrating how hard it is to keep phosphate binding material from clumping.
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Old 05-30-2013, 07:16 PM   #5
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I have a suspicion that these beads will tumble a long time. They are just biodegradable plastic beads used in a injection molding machine to make biodegradable plastic forks and glasses. The carbon polymer is made from natural products like corn starch instead of petroleum. Pretty simple concept.

Unless they get covered in slime, they should keep moving. Will be watching for that because they could go anaerobic if the process clumped up.
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Old 05-30-2013, 07:18 PM   #6
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And would be a breath of fresh air into the hobby if it works and was advertised.
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Old 05-30-2013, 07:19 PM   #7
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My algae scrubber does the heavy lifting, so I can experiment a bit with this secondary polishing process.
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Old 05-30-2013, 07:22 PM   #8
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When I get some funds together I want to make one. Now that i turned off the fuge due to everything being overwhelmed by this red hair algae the red turf is back on the powerheads in my tank...just need to control what is going on.

Also, there should just be a thread where you and I ramble back and forth about random saltwater topics since this is what has been happening lately!
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Old 05-30-2013, 08:28 PM   #9
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LOL well it is a hobby. And I have certainly gotten some valuable information from this forum. Rambling aside.
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Old 06-01-2013, 08:23 PM   #10
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When i was running GFO i barely had mine tumble no where near enough to crumble. Just enough to be a slight boil
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