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Old 19-09-2003, 12:25 PM
Arnim
 
Posts: n/a
Default get a pH controller?

Hi all. Still researching my deal but my online auction CO2 system arrived
today. My concern now is the pH swings. My tap water pH is pretty high,
about 8.0+ up to 8.4. All my tanks have been pretty stable at 8.0 for the
past couple of years and the fish have adjusted fine. If I just put the
solenoid on the timer with the lights, will the CO2 swings be too great as
the pH tends to equilibrium of 8.0 overnight? Luckily my KH is pretty high
so I think I can dissolve enough CO2 in the water but will have to pump
enough CO2 to get the pH down to at least 7.4 or so to get the 15 ppm. I'd
rather not have to start cutting the tap water with RO water if I don't have
to. So I thought I could get a controller and leave the CO2 on all the time
to avoid these swings. Any advice? I've seen two "popular" controllers on
the web. One is always aroung $200 the other around $90. I was of course
thinking about the $90 one, sms... advice?



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Old 19-09-2003, 07:22 PM
AQUATIC-STORE.COM
 
Posts: n/a
Default get a pH controller?

The sms 122 will do just what you want. It will automatically turn
off if the ph gets to low and keep it running @ the rest of the time.
Hook it up with a timer though so @ night it isnt [email protected] least thats
what most folks do.
I don't think the swing will be that great BUT you could leave it
running 24/7 and @ night just have an airpump kick on.
This way ph is stable and When the plants are not photosynthisyzing
you have o2 running!!


Marcus

http://www.aquatic-store.com/

Co2 tanks on sale
Eheim PRO II 2026 $143
Co2 regulator and bubble counter with needle valve $75
FORUM

http://aquatic.yupapa.com/phpbb/index.php



On Fri, Sep 2003 04:09:29 GMT, "Arnim" wrote:

Hi all. Still researching my deal but my online auction CO2 system arrived
today. My concern now is the pH swings. My tap water pH is pretty high,
about 8.0+ up to 8.4. All my tanks have been pretty stable at 8.0 for the
past couple of years and the fish have adjusted fine. If I just put the
solenoid on the timer with the lights, will the CO2 swings be too great as
the pH tends to equilibrium of 8.0 overnight? Luckily my KH is pretty high
so I think I can dissolve enough CO2 in the water but will have to pump
enough CO2 to get the pH down to at least 7.4 or so to get the 15 ppm. I'd
rather not have to start cutting the tap water with RO water if I don't have
to. So I thought I could get a controller and leave the CO2 on all the time
to avoid these swings. Any advice? I've seen two "popular" controllers on
the web. One is always aroung $200 the other around $90. I was of course
thinking about the $90 one, sms... advice?


  #3   Report Post  
Old 19-09-2003, 09:13 PM
Dan Drake
 
Posts: n/a
Default get a pH controller?

On Fri, 19 Sep 2003 20:21:19 UTC, AQUATIC-STORE.COM sales [email protected]
aquatic-store.com wrote:

The sms 122 will do just what you want. It will automatically turn
off if the ph gets to low and keep it running @ the rest of the time.
Hook it up with a timer though so @ night it isnt [email protected] least thats
what most folks do.
...


Why do they do that? I've never used the sms controller, but from the
catalogue listings it looks like any other pH controller with fewer
features. So, it turns on the CO2 when needed to kepp the pH down, and
turns it off when not needed. What's the benefit of turning it off?


--

http://www.dandrake.com/

In the days after September 11, Yahoo searches for Nostradamus
outnumbered those for Osama bin Laden and Sex, combined.
  #4   Report Post  
Old 23-09-2003, 08:22 PM
Dave Millman
 
Posts: n/a
Default get a pH controller?

Arnim wrote:

Hi all. Still researching my deal but my online auction CO2 system arrived
today. My concern now is the pH swings. My tap water pH is pretty high,
about 8.0+ up to 8.4. All my tanks have been pretty stable at 8.0 for the
past couple of years and the fish have adjusted fine. If I just put the
solenoid on the timer with the lights, will the CO2 swings be too great as
the pH tends to equilibrium of 8.0 overnight? Luckily my KH is pretty high
so I think I can dissolve enough CO2 in the water but will have to pump
enough CO2 to get the pH down to at least 7.4 or so to get the 15 ppm.


Tom Barr has pointed out that natural lakes can swing two full pH points from
day to night without harming the fish. If you are concerned, run the CO2 24
hours per day. It will tend to swing a bit up during the day, a bit down at
night, probably just 0.2 or so. I did detailed testing in my tank a year ago and
found that the swing was less than 0.2.

A controller adds cost, labor (setup, callibration) and risk to the system.


I'd
rather not have to start cutting the tap water with RO water if I don't have
to.


What are you thinking here? That will lower your pH even further.


Turn on the CO2. Watch the plants grow. Relax.

  #5   Report Post  
Old 24-09-2003, 05:42 PM
RedForeman
 
Posts: n/a
Default get a pH controller?

Tom Barr has pointed out that natural lakes can swing two full pH points
from
day to night without harming the fish. If you are concerned, run the CO2

24
hours per day. It will tend to swing a bit up during the day, a bit down

at
night, probably just 0.2 or so. I did detailed testing in my tank a year

ago and
found that the swing was less than 0.2.


And also, doesn't it depend somewhat on the strength or quality/efficiency
of your lighting? because if the lights are not strong, then the
photosynthesis that takes place is shorter in length and the ph doesn't drop
as much?

I'm probably way off... but seem to remember someone talking about that last
year when I got my lights and CO2 at the same time... they said put the
lights on, the slowly add the Co2 to monitor to watch for the daily swing...
I got .5 of a swing, and was told that anything less then 2 would be ok....




  #6   Report Post  
Old 28-09-2003, 06:32 AM
Bruce Geist
 
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Default get a pH controller?

Hmmm.
A controller adds cost, labor (setup, callibration) and risk to the

system.

It does add cost. However, I think it saves labor, and, while some argue
that it adds risk because the PH calibration can wander, in the 3 years I
have used one I have never seen my PH calibration off by more than 1 or 2
tenths of a PH point-- far less than the potential swing you can get when a
tank begins to dump and there is no controller. When you use a
controller, the CO2 flow does not need to be carefully set. You just get a
good flow going through your bubble counter, and let the controller take
over. That's it.

My PH controller happily deals with increases in CO2 flow due to end-of-tank
dump, which is something that happens at least once every 6 or 7 weeks in my
tank. Therefore, I feel my controller takes at least this risk out of the
system. I find it very convenient to use a controler for this reason alone.
In addition, the PH in my tank is rock steady all the time, even at night.
Fluctuation might not be bad, but rock steady isn't either. And, I always
know what my PH is, because the contorller is always displaying it, and its
always between 6.65 and 6.75. (I don't have to test the PH, another labor
savinigs.) Once every couple of months, I have to calibrate. This is a 10
minute process, and that is about all the labor associated with this device.

In short, if you can aford it and if you (like me) enjoy gagets, I say get a
controller. They're nice to have; I believe mine does save me time. I have
to agree that a controller is not absolutely necessary to maintain a healthy
eco-system however.

-Bruce

http://www.wideopenwest.com/~brucegeist


  #7   Report Post  
Old 29-09-2003, 06:02 AM
Arnim
 
Posts: n/a
Default get a pH controller?

Thanks Bruce. I did get the controller and am set up and ready to go. I'm
going to order a plant package online this week then hit my LFS for the big
planting next weekend. This has been a real project for just a 55 gallon
tank but I think I've obsessed so much that I'll be in pretty good shape:

1. I swapped out the 2' plastic hoods for glass tops and bid the online
auction for a compact fluorsecent fixture with legs and two 65W tri-phosphor
6700K bulbs (92 CRI).
2. I removed the slightly-too-large gravel from my two-year established
tank and replaced it with a 60:40 flourite/smaller gravel mix. This was the
worst part. I got the red fluorite and at points I couldn't even see the
fish in the tank. But patience, adding a little bit at a time, and several
filter cleanings did the job. I didn't want to rinse the fluorite too much
lest I lose all the good stuff. The fish are all fine though. I've also
got my fertilizer, iron supplement, and flourish tabs on hand.
3. I made a CO2 reactor with PVC and bio-balls and put it inline with my
cannister filter.
4. I rigged my 5lb. CO2 tank, solenoid, needle valve, bubble counter (all
online auction) to my new controller and everything works perfectly. All I
need to do is attach the line to the reactor to start delivering the CO2.
5. Oh yeah, and I read and read and read, and even went and talked to the
water treatment people in my town. What an education man.

Now I plant, attach the CO2 line to the reactor, switch on the lights, add a
little fertilizer and cross my fingers... wish me luck.

Arnim



"Bruce Geist" wrote in message
...
In short, if you can aford it and if you (like me) enjoy gagets, I say get

a
controller. They're nice to have; I believe mine does save me time. I

have
to agree that a controller is not absolutely necessary to maintain a

healthy
eco-system however.

-Bruce

http://www.wideopenwest.com/~brucegeist




  #8   Report Post  
Old 30-09-2003, 12:02 AM
Bruce Geist
 
Posts: n/a
Default get a pH controller?

Sounds great! Enjoy, and post some pics when you have 'em! -Bruce

"Arnim" wrote in message
y.com...
Thanks Bruce. I did get the controller and am set up and ready to go.

I'm
going to order a plant package online this week then hit my LFS for the

big
planting next weekend. This has been a real project for just a 55 gallon
tank but I think I've obsessed so much that I'll be in pretty good shape:

1. I swapped out the 2' plastic hoods for glass tops and bid the online
auction for a compact fluorsecent fixture with legs and two 65W

tri-phosphor
6700K bulbs (92 CRI).
2. I removed the slightly-too-large gravel from my two-year established
tank and replaced it with a 60:40 flourite/smaller gravel mix. This was

the
worst part. I got the red fluorite and at points I couldn't even see the
fish in the tank. But patience, adding a little bit at a time, and

several
filter cleanings did the job. I didn't want to rinse the fluorite too

much
lest I lose all the good stuff. The fish are all fine though. I've also
got my fertilizer, iron supplement, and flourish tabs on hand.
3. I made a CO2 reactor with PVC and bio-balls and put it inline with my
cannister filter.
4. I rigged my 5lb. CO2 tank, solenoid, needle valve, bubble counter (all
online auction) to my new controller and everything works perfectly. All

I
need to do is attach the line to the reactor to start delivering the CO2.
5. Oh yeah, and I read and read and read, and even went and talked to the
water treatment people in my town. What an education man.

Now I plant, attach the CO2 line to the reactor, switch on the lights, add

a
little fertilizer and cross my fingers... wish me luck.

Arnim



"Bruce Geist" wrote in message
...
In short, if you can aford it and if you (like me) enjoy gagets, I say

get
a
controller. They're nice to have; I believe mine does save me time. I

have
to agree that a controller is not absolutely necessary to maintain a

healthy
eco-system however.

-Bruce

http://www.wideopenwest.com/~brucegeist








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