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Old 03-03-2012, 06:08 AM   #1
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Pond Matrix Trial in FW

This product was recommended to me on another forum. Pond Matrix is suppose to reduce nitrAte in FW aquarium because the material is very porous and able to house anaerobic bacteria. I'm going to try it out and see if it works. If it doesn't work, then no problem. I have good media for my bacteria.

I just got my Pond Matrix earlier today. $100 for 5g/20L of this stuff. I spent the last hour rinsing all of it and getting it inside a Brute trashcan for fishless (ammonia) cycling.




I got 750gph circulation pump aimed at the bottom matrix substrate. Some of the matrix is floating, but they will eventually sink. There is about 15g of water inside the trashcan. Seachem (manufacturer) recommends 2-4L of pond matrix per 100g. I should have enough matrix to decrease nitrAte to less than 5ppm.





I'll update in 1-2 weeks or whenever I have time to test water parameters.
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Old 03-03-2012, 04:25 PM   #2
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Interesting, I'll keep an eye out on here and airstone for your results.
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Old 03-04-2012, 03:16 AM   #3
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I forgot about aerating the water, so I threw in a powerhead and aimed it at the surface. Now there is approximately 1000gph running through the pile of matrix. Tomorrow I'll bury the powerhead in the matrix to get more flow going through the matrix. No clogging of my powerhead since I have a protective case around the intake.

Over half of the floating matrix have become water-logged, so they sunk.

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Originally Posted by Mogurako View Post
Interesting, I'll keep an eye out on here and airstone for your results.
Better here than Airstone. I wish they had a forum. I can't keep track of all the emails. I don't read them anymore.
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Old 03-12-2012, 01:22 AM   #4
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I don't think there is enough flow going through the Matrix. I bought some eggcrate ceiling panels to hold the matrix in the future 20g sump.



I will make a rectangular basket and place it inside my 20g. Then put powerheads on both end so that there is a lot of flow (1000gph) running through the whole sump.




Next weekend, I will empty out the 20g and put all my matrix inside of it. Here is a simple sketch of what will happen when this whole trial is over:




I have not checked the water parameters yet since putting everything inside the trashcan.
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Old 03-18-2012, 10:36 PM   #5
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I just put the eggcrate together today. There is a Koralia circulation pump in one end of the tank and an Aquaclear 70 on the other side. Flow is still approximately 1000gph with ~10g of water. The tank is 20g long.

I'm two weeks into the trial period. Today I tested the water parameters for the first time.
Ammonia - 0
NitrIte ~4
NitrAte ~40





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Old 03-26-2012, 02:02 AM   #6
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3 weeks into cycling now. I tested a few days ago.

3/22/12
ammonia 0ppm
nitrIte 4-5ppm
nitrAte ~40ppm

3/25/12 (today)
ammonia/nitrIte untested
nitrAte 40-80ppm

Very difficult to accurately measure nitrAte at high levels. For the purpose of this trial, lets just say its still red. I've contacted Seachem Reps for more info about the time frame to establish anaerobic bacteria. I eager to see orange test colors and hope it happens on the 5th week of cycling.
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Old 03-31-2012, 07:51 PM   #7
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Completed the 4th week of cycling already.

Today 3-31-12:
ammonia 0 ppm
nitrIte ~2ppm
nitrAte ~40ppm (red)

Seachem reps say it might take a few weeks after the cycle to see 20ppm or less nitrAtes. I will put in a few drops of ammonia every other day to feed the bacteria. Hopefully, the rate of ammonia-to-nitrAte conversion is slower than the anaerobic bacteria eliminating the nitrAte in the form of gas.
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Old 04-07-2012, 12:26 PM   #8
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Today 4/7/12 water parameter is 0 ammonia and nitrIte. Cycle is officially completed. nitrAte is still in the red column. Again, its hard to determine the actual number with API test kit. I would guess 40ppm.

I'll report back when I give up on the waiting game or when I get an orange reading on the nitrAtes.
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Old 04-07-2012, 02:50 PM   #9
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The set up that I am using has been keeping my nitrates at 10-20 it is actually working , my nitrates are a little lower than before. It is matrix 3 trays full of matrix in a xp4 with the flow cranked way down a 125 gal. It has been 10-20 for 2 weeks now with the same water change schedule as before. It was 20 - 40 before I switched.
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Old 04-07-2012, 02:55 PM   #10
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It seems like the very slow flow is the to promote growth of the anaerobic bacteria. This filter is in addition to other filtration, It could not filter my tank with such a slow flow by itself.
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