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Old 02-07-2007, 11:01 AM   #1
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New Help Resetting up my 55 Gallon Planted Tank

Equipment
Tank - 55 G Flat Front
Lighting - 2x65w 12000k (i have 4x65w but i have 2 turned off, i can turn them off if necessary)
Heater - 200 W
Filter - Marineland Emperor 400 (HOB)
CO2 Tank - 5 lb
CO2 Regulator - Milwaukee CO2 Reg. w/ Solenoid Valve & Bubble counter
CO2 Reactor - Aqua Medic CO2 Reactor 1000
pH Meter - Milwaukee SMS122 pH Controller
Powerhead (to pump water thru reactor) - Aqua Clear 50 (270 gph)

Fish
Angelfish - 1
Bala Sharks - 2
Silver Dollars - 2
Black Skirt Tetra - 4
Zebra Danio - 2
Red Wag Platys - 2
Sunburst Platy - 1
Black Molly - 1
Gold Mystery Snail - 1
Albino Chinese Algae Eaters - 2

What i Need Advice on
How much of the following ferts to dose and when:
KNO3
KH2PO4
K2SO4
CSM+B

What should i set my pH on my pH controller to?

How many bubbles per second or per minute should i be seeing in the bubble counter?

What tests should i be doing as well?

What tempature should my tank be? (currently 78 degrees)
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Old 02-07-2007, 11:29 AM   #2
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In order to know what pH to set you controller to, we'll need to know the KH of your tank water. As a general rule the pH should be set 1 less than your normal non CO2 injected pH. This can be tweaked as needed based on fish reactions and plant health.

The bubbles per minute will be unique to your particular setup. A slower count will take longer for the appropriate CO2 levels to be acheived, but will be less dangerous if something goes wrong with the selonoid.

The main tests that you might want for a Planted Tank are:
KH
pH
NO3
PO4
The following tests are good to have as well.
NH4
NO2
GH

RedSea is the recommended brand for the PO4 testkit. Apparently it is almost as accurate as the LaMotte kits, but costs significantly less.

You current temp looks fine to me.
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Old 02-07-2007, 01:20 PM   #3
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Quote:
How much of the following ferts to dose and when:
KNO3
KH2PO4
K2SO4
CSM+B
I would strongly recommend dosing your tank with the IE method. It makes your dosing schedule more compact and not reliant on constant testing of levels.
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Old 02-07-2007, 04:09 PM   #4
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I am gonna go out and get a KH test tonite and see if i can find the RedSea PO4 test kit. If i cant find in locally i will order it.

I should be able to get the CO2 flowing after testing the KH.

Can anyone suggest a EI schedule for me? Would this mean i wouldnt need all the other test kits? Or still good to see where my numbers are throughout the week while using the EI?

Thanks,

Jimmy
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Old 02-08-2007, 12:07 AM   #5
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Once you commit to EI, you probably won't be doing a lot of testing. I still believe that it's a good idea to have good test kits on hand to help troubleshoot when problems crop up. I'm hoping that as I gain more experience with what causes certain algae and plant problems, I'll slowly have less of a need for the test kits.
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Old 02-18-2007, 03:18 PM   #6
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Ok, i am ready to turn the CO2 system on.

here are the stats of my tank (i dont have a PO4 test kit yet, but ill get one this week...i found a place locally that carries the Red Sea one).

pH = 7.2
Ammonia = 0 ppm
Nitrates < 5 ppm (~ 2 ppm)
GH = 80 mg/L
KH = 30 mg/L

So my questions now are:

What pH should i set my pH controller to?

Can someone recommend an EI schedule for me?
I have these nutrients
KNO3
KH2PO4
K2SO4
CSM+B (i also would like to use up my Seachem Flourish Comprehensive up too)

What should my light schedule be? i have 4.7 wpg

What is a good estimate for bubbles/second or bubbles/min? i have no idea where to start with this.
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Old 02-18-2007, 05:07 PM   #7
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Your pH controller should be set at 6.2. (30PPM CO2)

Here is EI:

40-60 Gallon Aquariums
+/- 1/2 tsp KN03 3x a week
+/- 1/8 tsp KH2P04 3x a week
+/- 1/8 tsp K2S04 3x a week
+/- 1/8 (10ml) Trace Elements 3x a week
50% weekly water change

EI target ranges
CO2 range 20-30 ppm
NO3 range 5-30 ppm
K+ range 10-30 ppm
PO4 range 1.0-2.0 ppm
Fe 0.2-0.5ppm or higher
GH range 3-5 degrees ~ 50ppm or higher
KH range 3-5

From:

http://www.barrreport.com/estimative...test-kits.html

and

http://www.barrreport.com/articles/1...ive-index.html

I would recommend getting a cannister filter for your setup. Not that it's required, but I know you will like it better then that HOB. You will be able to attach the CO2 reactor to the output and get rid of the PH.
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Old 02-18-2007, 06:13 PM   #8
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Keep your lights on for 8-12 hours. Shorter if you just trying to maintain the tank as is or are fighting an algae problem, longer if you're pushing the plants to grow and fill in the tank.

To get about 30ppm of CO2 you'll need a pH of 6.2, so that's what you'll want to set your pH controller to.
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Old 02-18-2007, 06:30 PM   #9
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Just a word about the BPM. I set mine to "as fast as the reactor can process it".. My controller is never running for more then 5 mins.. I can't even estimate my bpm , per second it would be about 9-10 maybe..

The good thing about a controller is it turns it off when you reach PH. So BPM doesn't really matter, as long as it's not too low, or too high that you get a lot of gas buildup in the reactor. (even then this won't make a huge difference, but might add to the PH swing a bit.)
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