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Old 14-11-2004, 02:23 AM
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You did not need to change the KH.
Add only enough CO2 to drop the p/H to 6.5. Keep it there all day.
Use tap and do not add baking soda at all.
That's all you have to do.

OK. I'll let water changes dilute the sodium bicarbonate and set the pH
at 6.5 and see how that goes. One less variable I would need to control
sounds good to me.

Set output pressure at 15psi or so.

The output is fixed with this regulator, so I'm assuming it is OK.

Make sure the outflow from the reactor leaves the bottom and goes
right into the return from the sump.

The bottom of the reactor is submerged in the sump and the outflow is
pointed right at the submersible return pump.

Reduce the splash on the over flow box also(raise the water level in

No overflow boxes. The back of the tank is drilled (not the bottom) so
the water drains out the back into PVC straight down into a 90 degree
elbow before going into the sump. If I ever redesign the tank, would it
be better to replace the PVC with some vinyl tubing where the angles
could be sloped to reduce the agitation (I know it would sure be

Use spray bars that point downward or are already down along the back
wall of the tank running along the bottom.

I have a horizontal spray bar along most of the back that points
straight down.

Wash plants good, but do not dip for more than a minute at most in a
solution of bleach, some like moss will not survive.

What do you normally do to clean/disinfect plants? When you say "wash"
them, what does that consist of?

Tom, your input, as always, is appreciated.


OK, here's an update on day 6:

Just finished installing two 4' T8 NO fluorescent bulbs overdriven to ~
50 watts each, so that should give me a little more light over the
corner with the plants. I eventually plan on putting 4 strips across the
entire length, giving me about 300 total watts. Hopefully that'll give
me enough for most low and med light plants. We'll see if this
resurrects any of my existing stock.

After I got the controller installed with the KH still at 6, the initial
pH measured 7.71. Bubbling at 3 per second lowered the pH to 7.25. Using
Chuck's CO2 calculator, that takes concentration from 3.5 to 10 ppm. Not
as much as I had hoped.

Does anyone think I would have better results if I tried to run the
output of the reactor directly into the tank rather than having it
return into the sump?

I'll up the bubble rate to 4 or 5 per second in hopes that it will
trigger the threshold for the controller to turn the solenoid off.

-- Allan

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