Algae scrubber as bio filter.

markstrimaran

Aimara
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20181122_154241.jpg

Filter sock tailings, packed full of daphnis, midge fly larve, algea and all post 300 micron fish poop.
 
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markstrimaran

Aimara
Original poster
Nov 21, 2015
2,192
986
125
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iowa
Real Name
mark
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Occupation
retired oilfield diver, welding technician
View attachment 1344725
36 balls
Nitrates were 25ppm last week.
Today it is 15ppm.

Still debugging the sieve prefilter, as it diverts water away from the scrubber, if it gets plugged.

Filter sock have 3 days and are full.
Week 1 update
Nitrates typically have been around 30 ppm prior to a 40% water change, with 10ppm tap water. Equalizing around 20ppm after the water change drum is flushed through. With a gradual nitrate creep up into +40ppm every few months.

I started this week at 15ppm and am currently at 15ppm. Prior to my weekly water change routine.
 
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markstrimaran

Aimara
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Nov 21, 2015
2,192
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iowa
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mark
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retired oilfield diver, welding technician
Week 2 update.
Nitrates slightly above 15ppm pre water change.
 
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markstrimaran

Aimara
Original poster
Nov 21, 2015
2,192
986
125
46
iowa
Real Name
mark
Gender
Male
Occupation
retired oilfield diver, welding technician
Week 3 update.
Nitrates slightly above 15ppm before weekly water change.

Ammonia has been zero, but I still am holding 5 gallons of bio balls in a chamber post scrubber, as a safety. Mostly if my diy lights fail.

The fluidized balls are producing lots of long strand fine hair algea. Which accumulates daily for easy harvesting.

I noticed a drop in growth which was quickly cured with adding more iron, steel dust.

The balls could use a little more turbulence, bigger air pump, as the lights need a weekly cleaning to remove algea that restricts the angle of light spread. From 120 degrees to 45 degrees. From the 4 inch strands. Attached near the light that the balls don't mow down.

The balls are all self cleaning.
 

markstrimaran

Aimara
Original poster
Nov 21, 2015
2,192
986
125
46
iowa
Real Name
mark
Gender
Male
Occupation
retired oilfield diver, welding technician
Week 4 update

Nitrates at 15ppm.

I am not doing a water change,.

Added 10 more algeaballs, "new white"

Led tank fixture, lost white channel, so currently set up with
2 small led fixture, and actinic T5 tubes.

Have some new " full spectrum warm white light," 50 watt chips. I will be trying out later this winter.
 

markstrimaran

Aimara
Original poster
Nov 21, 2015
2,192
986
125
46
iowa
Real Name
mark
Gender
Male
Occupation
retired oilfield diver, welding technician
Week 5

Nitrates at 20 ppm after going 2 weeks between water changes.

Really good with 30 plus full grown african cichlids and daily feeding of about 60 fry, the fry water bypasses the algea scrubber. So I am counting the 5 ppm increase to the grow out compartment inside the sump.

The top tank is at 30 ppm with the scrubber lights needing a good clearing of algea. I unfortunately had to drain a finger nail last week and have a hole in my thumb nail, so time to seal it with some epoxy and get back on top of maintenance.

I will be doing a water change today.
 
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markstrimaran

Aimara
Original poster
Nov 21, 2015
2,192
986
125
46
iowa
Real Name
mark
Gender
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Occupation
retired oilfield diver, welding technician
20181221_180500.jpg

Top tank upflow scrubber, lights are a little weak, as its missed its weekly scrubbing. It's a scum slime that fish will not eat, but packed full of daphnia.
20181221_180830.jpg

The sand screen is still holding long stand turf roots, so a good scrubbing will not effect it very much , after a couple of days it will be back at full power.

Mean while ammonia build up will be burned up in the secondary moss Hob.
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It's been untouched for a year or so.
 
Reactions: jaws7777

markstrimaran

Aimara
Original poster
Nov 21, 2015
2,192
986
125
46
iowa
Real Name
mark
Gender
Male
Occupation
retired oilfield diver, welding technician
Week 6 update.

Pre water change nitrate
18ppm.

Still have about 40 small fry in the system bypassing the scrubber.

20181228_184345.jpg

A floater
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Over grown on the inside with moss. So far the only regular maintenance task is cleaning the lights with a brush on stick.

I did have an over grown strand of turf algea, that snagged a couple of balls. It locked them to the side of the scrubber.
 
Reactions: kno4te and jaws7777

markstrimaran

Aimara
Original poster
Nov 21, 2015
2,192
986
125
46
iowa
Real Name
mark
Gender
Male
Occupation
retired oilfield diver, welding technician
20181231_081206.jpg

Had to do a scrubber cleaning, as some strands of long hair turf algea were jamming the balls.

It's free food for the grow outs.

Nothing critical, that will effect the over all filtering.

I pulled 8 balls as they had snags were I drilled the holes, they were all floaters.

My earlier balls have 1/4" holes vs the 3/8" , and are prone to trap air.
The hole are not perfectly 90 degrees apart on all 3 axis.

15463606564868400887787442032136.jpg

The poor boy sieve has been working good, it requires a bleaching every 4 days. It has kept filter sock going for 10 days between changing. 20181224_170020.jpg
 
Reactions: kno4te
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