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Old 07-07-2004, 08:04 PM
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Default Just set up an automated CO2 system, a couple questions...

|| I finally decided that Flourish Excel wasn't doing the best job at
|| maintaining my plants. No DIY setup here, I went all out and set up a
|| CO2 reactor, a tank w/ solenoid, and a pH computer to shut off the
|| CO2 if it drops below 7.00.

Cool... but realize that the pH will swing slightly when photosynthesis
takes place at night, when the lights are off... it's no problem at all, the
fish can handle the .5 swing that you'll encounter...

|| Plants range from Giant Valis, Cambomba, Hornwort, Moneywort,
|| Anacharis, and Crypts. Fish are fancy goldfish and some bushynosed &
|| rubbernosed plecos. Tank size is a 42 gallon hexagon.
|| -- I currently have CO2 going at about 2 bubbles per second. Is that
|| about right?

That's no biggie. Keep tabs on your water first. Manage a pH of X, adding
CO2 to drop it, and baking soda to raise it. Baking soda is used as a
buffer for kH and will allow your pH to be managed better. In my case, 29g,
65wPCF lighting, CO2 drops my 7.0water to 6.6 or so, and I add baking soda
to keep it buffered to 7.0... preventing a pH crash when buffer runs out..

|| -- I have the system set to shut off if pH drops below 7.0. I
|| typically try to buffer to around 7.4. Does that sound like I'm doing
|| the right thing?

It sounds like you've done some homework, and I don't want to point you in a
direction for no reason... I'm kind of a hands off guy, I'd like to set it
and forget it. I was told that you can run your CO2 all the time, maintain
a kH of 2-4 and manage your pH to see how much CO2 is dissolved in the
water... Here's the most wonderful link to calculate that.

|| -- Finally, I have the system set up on a timer so that it shuts off
|| completely at night when the lights go out. (I have the lighting set
|| up on a timer as well.) It's my understanding that plants don't use
|| CO2 at night. Again, does that sound right?
|| I appreciate any help!

The only thing I can tell you now, is, you're certainly on the right
track... First, stop listening to too much of what the LFS says... they're
good people, but they're trying to sell you things... and that's ok, they'll
be your first line of defense... but take heed, they'll often lead you down
a certain isle and say, this bottle has exactly what you're looking for...
and blah blah blah.... You'll end up coming here, asking a question and
getting 20 answers, that better fit your scenario, and more likely, save you
time, money and effort...

Now... PICS dangit!!! if you haven't already, add alt.binaries.aquaria to
your news reader, take some pics, and start posting... The binaries group
has had a big problem of warez posters, but the more 'we' post in it, the
less they can be seen....

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is that better??