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Tarpon
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So ive been sitting here thinking about my tank just about all day, and thinking that putting a calcium reactor on a 45 could be problematic due to excess CO2 and lowering my PH quite a bit, then I got to thinking about my old planted tank that I used to have......that ran a CO2 diffuser to grow plants faster. SO, im thinking im going to run my calcium reactor straight to a algae tumbler. My thought behind it is....if I run straight from the reactor.....it will give the water time to give off its CO2 and bring the PH back up and make the plants grow quicker due to excess CO2 what little there will be. I guess my question is, could I run the reactor straight to a algae/refuge area where the algae would suck up the excess CO2? and there be no problems?
 

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uber-stupid
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4,781 Posts
Another way people get rid of CO2 is by running there effluent drip to the intake of their skimmer.
 

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Carpe Noctem
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With a 45 gallon tank, the amount of effluent is going to be so slow, you shouldn't have a major pH issue until your calcium demand increases to the point that you have to raise the effluent rate. But ultimately churning it through a CO2 reactor will have pretty much no effect.

Jason makes a far greater point in aerating the effluent through the skimmer first.
 

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Tarpon
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Okay, well if I drip it dircetly next to the input pump will the be good enough?
 

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Carpe Noctem
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You can... but just in the skimmer compartment of the sump will be fine. This isn't a huge problem... People with huge calcium demands do just fine by adding kalk to counteract the low pH...
 

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Tarpon
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3,793 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I just dont want to overcomplicate things. My PH sits at 8.3-8.4 always. even at night it stays around 8.1. Im going to use an aqualifter as my feed pump. Im thinking that should be matched perfect for my tank after all the research ive been doing. I was just getting concerned about an algae bloom after the addition of my reactor( due to excess CO2) but if you guys think its no big deal, then im not worried about it either.
 

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uber-stupid
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Start a thread and ask about ph, Ca++ and alk values in your effluent. You might not even need to run you reactor all the time. I was reading a thread once that referenced an Alk level in the neighborhood of 35DKH. You should either research it or ask directly about it. I really don't thinkj you'll have anywhere near an issue with pH if your reactor is tuned correcly. Like mentioned above... Your not going to be dripping enough effluent fast enough to impact pH in your system untill you have a lot of hermatipic (sp?) Corals in your system.
 

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Tarpon
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3,793 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Well my goal is to have at least 20-30 different sps in my tank. I have about 8 different species now.....two lps and a few softies. Softies are going out soon......then ill just have one LPS and the rest SPS. I want it to be a forest of sps in my tank. Which will happen within the next 6-8 months. Just getting the tank ready for the load. :)
 

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uber-stupid
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Yeah don't worry about pH... You have time to research it. I recomend starting now though.
 

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Premium Member
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17,355 Posts
Or many people run a dual chamber reactor if you have the space.
dual chamber and correctly adjusted Ca++ reactor, as well as keeping the probe for the controller clean and correctly calibrated.
 

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Just send me a PM ;)
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Start a thread and ask about ph, Ca++ and alk values in your effluent. You might not even need to run you reactor all the time. I was reading a thread once that referenced an Alk level in the neighborhood of 35DKH. You should either research it or ask directly about it. I really don't thinkj you'll have anywhere near an issue with pH if your reactor is tuned correcly. Like mentioned above... Your not going to be dripping enough effluent fast enough to impact pH in your system untill you have a lot of hermatipic (sp?) Corals in your system.
Yes, the alk of the effluent can be up there, but you can regulate that by increasing or decreasing the pH in the reactor. With a lower pH cvalue the effluent will be higher, and vise-versa.
 

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Tarpon
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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
phew, you guys have me good and confused. I think im going to have to tinker with it and figure it out to truely understand it.
 

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Just send me a PM ;)
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What exactly are you confused with, we'll try to step you through it to help you understand.,
 

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Tarpon
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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
The only thing thats really confusing me is the ratio of drip rate and effluent and how all that effects the DKH. I understand the concept and I realize the more CO2 the lower the PH, the lower the PH the more calcium that is dissolved and if it goes too low it will make mush of the media. I understand all of that, I just dont see where DKH comes into play. Im still trying to wrap my head around that. I know that my CO2 rate is going to be probably 1 bubble every 3 seconds...and my effluent will be very very slow as well. maybe a drip every few seconds, but im lost as to where DKH comes in.
 

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dkH is the primary effect of the calcium reactor. IMO, the reactor is improperly named as a calcium reactor, it shoudl be called an Alk (dkH) reactor. Calcium is the other effect of the reactor.

The lower the pH the higher the alk output (dkH) this can be achieved via two ways, more CO2 into the reactor with a faster effluent drip rate or slower drip rate from the effluent (uses less CO2, but is slower at supplementing alk, naturally).

Calcium is a side effect of the alk addition from the reactor.
 

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Tarpon
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3,793 Posts
Discussion Starter · #17 ·
So generally......if you keep your effluent PH in the correct range then your DKH should not get out of wack? I dont want to introduce the equipment and throw everything out of proportion. Right now all my levels are sitting pretty where they should be. Calcium is 420,PH 8.2, and ive never measured for DKH......I know I have the test....but everytime I do it it turns out a weird #. but everything is growing nicely, and my sps coloration has become phenomenal since the coral coloration post. (I changed my methods accordingly)
 

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You will more than likely have a tank pH reduction of some sort from the CO2 entering the system. You can mitigate how much by having the effluent drip into the skimmer section of your sump (near to the skimmer pump inlet, but not right at it)

You will have to keep track of the alk (dkH) so get a good kit like the Sera, Tropic Marin or Salifert to track it. You will want to measure the alk every 2-3 days and chart it to verify trends (either increase or decrease) You will need to make several adjustments to the reactor to get everything to balance (as fasras demand and supplementation of alk). Do not dose anything while adjusting the reactor as it will skew your results in one direction or the other.
 

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Tarpon
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3,793 Posts
Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Sounds good, ill order a test kit tonight. probably will buy a salitfert, ive never heard anything bad about them. Im thinking about getting a controller as well.....ive heard that a properly setup reactor doesn't need one. Should I splurge and buy it before I setup my reactor? Or just manually test it? im cool with it either way. I dont mind physically testing my levels. Thank you again for all your help!
 

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Just send me a PM ;)
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I would buy a controller. It will make your life better and save you some money in the end (CO2 use and such)

I would also recommend just saving a tad more and buying a AC Jr or something like that. It has more uses than just controlling the reactor and it is easier to calibrate (albeit a tad confusing to program initially)
 
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