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SantaMonicaHelp

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Everything posted by SantaMonicaHelp

  1. guess the wrasse

    Hi Angel Fish, It's been a long time..How the fish is now? I hope that you found the answer to your question Kaia
  2. Taking the plunge.. From fresh to salt

    Welcome! ~SF
  3. Wikipedia picture of the day: September 11, 2015: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Coral_Outcrop_Flynn_Reef.jpg
  4. New member hey everybody

    Hello, welcome! ~SF
  5. Lowest cost and easiest way to eliminate green hair, bubble, turf and slime algae from your aquarium (hopefully permanently). This new test version of the algae scrubber is much easier to build than the waterfall version (the Mega Powerful one), and is perfect for nano's. This new scrubber has never been posted before May 2012. It works in both freshwater and saltwater. If you are like most aquatic hobbyists, nuisance algae is an ongoing problem. You try to feed your livestock, and the next thing you know, you get algae. You've already tried many fixes; some work but are expensive; some kind of work but you're not sure; and some just don't work at all. Think about what is happening: Your aquarium is accumulating nutrients (nitrate and phosphate) because of the food you feed. Algae eat nitrate and phosphate to grow, so the algae are having a great time growing in your water because they are eating all your nutrients! What to do? Well think about this: In order to grow, algae must be provided with nitrate and phosphate. So why can't you just use the algae to consume all the nitrate and phosphate? The answer: You can! How? With a simple device you build called an Upflow Algae Scrubber. It's simple, cheap, and you can make a small one in just a few minutes with parts you probably already have. I'll be posting more complex versions later, but here are some pics of the most basic design that you can use for testing: (will be updated periodically) An "algae scrubber" is a simple filter that actually grows algae in the filter, so that the algae do not grow in other parts of your aquarium. Simply put, the conditions for algae growth inside the filter are better than the conditions in the rest of your aquarium; thus the algae grow in the filter instead of your aquarium, and then you just remove the algae from the filter and throw the algae away. But in order for the algae to grow in the filter, the algae need to consume nitrate and phosphate; so guess where the nitrate and phosphate come from? Your water! If you stop and think about it, algae always grow in certain spots, and not in others. This is because some of the three growing conditions (light, flow, nutrients) are better in some parts of your water than they are in others. An "upflow algae scrubber" simply optimizes these conditions, and does so at a place where the algae can be easily removed and thrown away. And once the nitrate and phosphate have been removed from your water, all other nuisance algae such as green hair, bubble, turf and slime, will have a hard time staying alive. So where have these filters been all this time, and why haven't you heard of them if they work so well? Well the original waterfall version (the Mega Powerful thread posted in August 2008) was hard to build, and was not really for sale anywhere; so unless you liked to build things from scratch, you had no choice but to buy some other kind of filter. All the filter really needed to do was to create good growing conditions (light, flow, nutrients) for the algae, by flowing the water across a piece of rough material, so that the algae would grow on the material instead of somewhere else in the aquarium. The waterfall algae scrubber did grow lots of algae in the filter, and it removed lots of algae from aquariums: Over 1,000 people built their own waterfall algae scrubbers, and reported their results on various forums during a 4 year period; almost all of them wiped out their nuisance algae within 8 weeks, and many did so in 4 weeks. And on other forums that I never posted on, an estimated 10,000 people built their own waterfall algae scrubbers with similar results. A little over a year ago in April 2011, another idea came along: Instead of letting the water flow down a screen like a waterfall, how about you let the water flow up the screen using air bubbles? Why? Because as good as waterfall algae scrubbers are, they still need a place for the water to drain "down" to. This means that you need to have a sump below the aquarium, or you need to have the scrubber up above the aquarium. This is not easy, and is very difficult for a nano aquarium which usually has no sump below it, and no room above it. Also, the waterfall version requires it to be out of the water (in the air), which takes up extra space. The new "upflow" version, however, can be placed inside the aquarium, so that it takes up no extra space at all, and it needs no external plumbing or water pumps at all. Only air bubbles. The Upflow Algae Scrubber (UAS) provides the best growing conditions for algae in your tank: Air bubbles provide rapid turbulent flow; Strong lighting provides the light; and the nutrients that are already in your water provide the nitrate and phosphate. All that's needed is a place for the algae to attach to, and that is provided by the roughed-up plastic screen. Thus the algae start growing on the screen because the flow and lighting are stronger there than they are in the rest of your aquarium; nitrate and phosphate are consumed in the process. This causes algae to start disappearing from your aquarium and start re-appearing on the scrubber screen, so that you can throw the algae away every week or two. The most basic way to set up an Upflow Algae Scrubber, especially in small aquariums, is just to put some air bubbles beneath a vertical screen. If inside an aquarium, you just put a light on the outside of the glass, so that it shines inside to the screen. And if you want better performance (which means better filtering), just add a reflector to give the screen some light on both sides. The screen is best made with 7-mesh cross stitch plastic canvas that you get at sewing or craft stores, or online. Also, don't forget to rough up the screen with a sharp object like a hole saw; the screen should be so rough that the screen holes are almost filled in with all the little pieces of plastic that you roughed up. One thing to remember is that an Upflow Algae Scrubber (or any algae scrubber) will not cause more algae to grow in your aquarium. Instead, the algae will disappear from your aquarium, and will start to grow on the scrubber screen instead. You then just remove the screen and scrape the algae off. And here's a surprise: Watch out for your fish or snails eating your filter! There's nothing tastier than live green algae, so your fish or snails may keep your screen from getting very thick. The simple solution is to just put some mesh or netting around it. There are a couple of requirements that have been learned since August 2008 which will get you started quicker. The size of the Upflow Algae Scrubber that is needed is based on how much you feed, and not how much water you have, because the nutrients that cause algae to grow come from the food you feed. The following updated picture has size guidelines: (will be updated periodically; if picture cuts off, open in new window) And the following updated picture has examples: (will be updated periodically; if picture cuts off, open in new window) So build a UAS and post your pictures! . . .
  6. This is the Collector UAS Scrubber.
  7. Airstone in the fuge doesnot work as good as the UAS scrubber. The macro in the fuge is self-block the light and only the top part is getting the light. It is also further away from the light.
  8. Most craft store will have them under sewing section or you can get them at fabric store.
  9. Do you have any suggestions for the best manufacturer for making these?
  10. This is the new design with bubble remover.
  11. Here are the requirements for building a UAS. Screen material: 1) Use plastic canvas as the algae screen. Remember to roughen it up properly using a wood saw or hole saw. You can get plastic canvas at craft store (under sewing section) or sewing store or online at places like www.everythingplasticcanvas.com or ebay. Screen should look like this: Lighting 2) The lighting needs to be 1 watt per square inch (6.25 square cm) of screen material. A 3 by 4 inch screen is 12 square inches not 24. Make sure you have enough wattage and use a reflector if the light doesnot focus on screen. For fluorescent bulbs, it needs to have a spectrum of 2700k-3000k. For LEDs, it needs to be red 660nm. You can cut the wattage in half if you are using LED lights. In order for algae to grow, make sure that the light is on for 18 hours a day. Here are some bulbs and reflector type: Bubbles: 3) The bubbles need to be rapid and large and distributed through out the screen evenly for algae to grow. The best way to do this is by slicing the air tubing. Make sure the air pump is good so that the bubbles can constantly flow across the screen for 24 hours a day. This is why you need bubbles:
  12. Thanks for your feedback. That's great!
  13. Some more successes from waterfall scrubbers: Damon on the IM site: "I have been completely skimmer less for over a month now, and my ats has brought my nitrates from off the chart above 50ppm and with yesterday's test it has come down to 5 on the high end with color choosing(can't wait for a Hanna to make a nitrate). I am extremely happy with my ats as it is now, but I do believe I'm going to build a second one next to it. I built this size for a small (75-90g heavy bioload), but I'm going to add a second one that will be a more professional build quality now that I have figured out how I want it to run. I still love the fact that I have dropped $25 a month in electricity, haven't done a water change in a month while still dropping nitrates and getting amazing coral growth. The best part is I am making these to utilize my overflow drains, so in essence I adding a more efficient form of filtration without adding any heat or extra electricity. I can't report on long term results as I've only been running an ats since last fall. But from where my tank was to where it is now is enough for me to jump ship, lol." Kerry on the scrubber site: "I was hard for me to believe that this device worked. It took about a year before I built one and now I wish I knew about this years ago. Who would have thought algae would provide so much success? I even have one on my 150G FW Jack Dempsey tank as well. And yes, its so nice not to have a skimmer anymore!!!!" Reefkeeper2 on the RC site: "I run a skimmer, biopellets and an ATS. The skimmer and the pellets worked well keeping nitrates at 0, but there was room for improvement with phosphate control. I tried GFO, and lanthanum. My sps do not like the GFO. I got STN often when I changed it out. The lanthanum worked, but was very labor intensive and so unpractical. The ATS did the trick nicely. I have been a reefer for a very long time. I think I have tried every method of nutrient control thought up by anyone. I really enjoy trying out new ideas and trying to improve on old ones. I have to say that this combination has worked the best of all I have tried over the years." N728NY on the RC site: "Just chiming in to say I really hope this thread keeps going! Lots of good info. I'm still pretty new to keeping a reef tank. I have been running a scrubber with my skimmer for the past three months. Before then I could never get my nitrates below 15, and since I added my scrubber I never been able to detect any nitrates, even after feeding twice as much. I know with my 75 gallon set up, I made my scrubber slightly over sized (sized for 100 gallons) and I dump huge amounts of pellets and frozen shrimp in my tank on top of spot feeding my corals on a regular basis and I still have yet to register any nitrates on my test kit. Being that I'm still new I still haven't built up the courage to unplug the skimmer yet. I may try it once I know for sure my scrubber is fully matured, got plenty of ro water made up and salt ready just in case I need to do an emergency water change lol. I still have a clump of cheato left that I suppose would be good back up if the scrubber couldn't keep up. The cheato doesn't really grow very much right now because of the scrubber. I love these scrubbers, I'm so glad I took the time to read "both sides" of the arguments on them to find out the facts about them." Kentth on the scrubber site: "overall the tank is much healthier, a lot of feather dusters, coming out of the rocks, yellow sponges, other opaque sponges. big thing is no water changes for over 8 months, almost no silt, it has really cut my maintenance" Langtudatinh01 on the RC site: "i completely redo my 40B with the ATS from beginning, i barely see much algae on my display tank but i now have a mature ATS. i relocated all my fish and add another one without any issue. the dead rocks i use bleach quite a lot of phosphate back into the water, but the ATS has handle the issue like a cham. i do not see much algae on my display. everything is green like grass down at the ATS. i am very happy so far.' Bicolour on the MFUK site: "quick update, so my ats has been running since [6 weeks ago] and i gotta say all the algea in my tank and on the sand has gone, wow. gotta say it was well worth doing. i dont monitor growth at the moment but this is something i will be doing in the future, my set up was basic costing very little as i wanted to try this before i really looked into the idea. very impressed and can only say if you got space look into it" Rysher on the RC site: "i have a 6x9 screen, 1 inch is submerged so only 6x8 is really used, i also have a 40b. it has been my only form of filtration ever since i started the tank [months ago], i feed almost 2 cubes a day, only have 2 fishes but u cant see any algae on my DT, almost non existent film algae too, i clean my DT glass maybe once a week." Packman90 on the RC site: "I have a 72 Gallon bow front and until a couple of months ago I was going to throw my tank away and give up on saltwater tanks all together. I was brand new, took a lot of advice, started my system and watched as it became more and more green, until i found out about scrubbers. I lost all of the coral frags I bought, about $400.00 worth, and just felt that I would never get it. I have it now, and just bought my first new frags in over 8 months. Thanks to all of you scrubbers out there who showed me the way. Here is the tank after the scrubber did it's magic. this took a total of 1 month for it to clear up, and I did not remove any of the algae, it just melted a way. Only problem I have is that i have some sea grass that is melting away as well and cheto in my sump is also slowly dieing."
  14. Important videos to help you understand algae filtering... - Ocean Productivity - Photosynthesis part 1 - Food Chains vs. Food Webs - Nutrients and Primary Production - Chlorophyll - Zooplankton and Primary Production - Bacteria - Food Webs - Microbial Food Web - Trophic Pyramids
  15. Brown algae

    Take a look at this post, it might help you http://www.pnwmas.org/forums/showthread.php?32360-Lowest-cost-and-easiest-way-to-eliminate-green-hair-bubble-turf-and-slime-algae
  16. Some UAS builds... "Acorral" on the scrubber site: "Badfish" on the RC site: "Cmaxtian" on the scrubber site: "Deneed4spd" onthe TCMAS site: "Ewerd" on the scrubber site: "Fishuntbike" on the scrubber site: "FloydRturbo" on the scrubber site: "Hugbert" on the scrubber site: "Jaz" on the scrubber site: "Kalgra" on the R2R site: "KelliZackMOMon"on the LR site: "MorganAtlanta"on the scrubber site; "Octavia-vrs"on the UR site: "Othello"on the scrubber site: "OwenReefin"on the PNWMAS site: "Pecker115"on the UR site: "Cermet" on the AC site: "Promazine"on the UR site: "Bobba" on the scrubber site: "Reefnjunkie"on the PNWMAS site: "RkyRickstr"on the scrubber site: "Ruddybop"on the MFK site: "Smann" on the PNWMAS site: "Strayrex" on the UR site: "Swhite" on the scrubber site: "Tonymar"on the scrubber site:
  17. You light is not covering the whole screen, why don't you reduce the size of your screen to match the light.
  18. Some success stories of people using waterfall algae scrubbers on different sites: Aydee on the scrubber site: "I'm going to call this a success. My nitrates had been sitting steady at about 10 or so for over a year. For it to drop to undetectable in 2 weeks.. THAT is impressive. I have got my skimmer running still, but once my ATS is running, I'll turn off the skimmer (not remove.. Yet....) If situation remains excellent as the trend currently is, I'll remove the skimmer. However, I came into ATS thinking "It can't hurt, as I'll keep my skimmer running" and now I'm thinking "WOAH! They're right!". Obviously, the proof will be in 2 years time, ATS sans skimmer.. But.. So far, the numbers are fantastic." Robert_Patterso on the RC site: "Best thing I have ever put on any of my tanks in over 25 years of being in the hobby" Pskelton on the RC site: "I personally have not done a water change in 6 months ever since I implemented my scrubber. long story short my tank was a mess, kid dumped container of food in tank. I got a snow flake eel that dug up my sand bed and I was running a very under powered cheep skimmer. This lead to my nitrates peeking at 160. I did water changes for a while but the nitrate just keep coming back up to 160. The water changes were getting expensive and I was about to give up when I tried the scrubber. Within a few weeks nitrate dropped to 60 and slowly came down from there. As of my test last week I am finally at 0 nitrate and I haven't done a water change in six months. The protean skimmer has been removed and my tank is healthier than ever. I am just waiting for the algae on my rocks to finish dieing off." Murph on the scrubber site: "my ATS is coming along fine. I think I spent about 30 bucks making it. When I compare that to the thousand or more I have spent on skimmers over the past ten years or so that made little to no difference when it came to nuisance algae in the display I want to pull my hair out. My ATS has out done them all in a matter of a few months." Spotter on the RC site: "Nitrate Day 1: 5ppm, Week 1: 0ppm, Week 2: 0ppm. P04 Day 1: .035, Week 1: .015, Week 2: .0092 I am liking this very much." JohnnyB_in_SD on the RC site: "I feed about 6-7 cubes a day on a 100gl tank, and 10-12 cubes two days a week when I do the nems & corals too. N&P have been undetectable since I started using ATS, which is a mickey mouse rubber maid tub version. Since I am always looking for the easiest way to do everything, I will continue cleaning the whole screen once a week. For me, it was a real struggle maintaining water quality with just a fuge: starving my fish, super skimming, massive weekly water changes - just to keep Nitrates near 20ppm and Phosphate under 1.0. That all went away with an ATS, the hobby is much more enjoyable and not a huge chore." Thedude657 on the scrubber site: "So my screen finally filled out with greenish algae. Water quality is excellent and now I have all sorts of cool things growing on my live rock. Little white sponges are popping up everywhere, some stuff I have no clue what it is yet. Just wanted to say thanks to help me get started." Chrisfraser05 on the RC site: "I just wanted to jump in and say after bumping into Santamonica on a forum a while back and also watching Lafishguys videos I started a marine tank [8 months ago]. Obviously I started my first tank with a DIY algae scrubber and have NEVER seen either nitrate or phosphate." Redneckgearhead on the scrubber site: "Heres the pics of my HA problem. [algea all over]These where taken just before I added my scrubber. I had tried EVERYTHING nothing helped. I paid a small fortune for a skimmer that I was told would surely take care of the problem. The HA laughed and kept on growing. My lights where down to 3 hours a day, my fish where only fed a small amount every two to three days, I was doing 10 percent water changes twice a week. And keep in mind those picks are only about 3 days growth, I would remove about 80 percent of the HA during my water changes. These are pics I took today just before my weekly water change. [almost no algae] I am feeding daily, my fish are now fat and happy. My scrubber is working beautifully! I am so glad I found out about scrubbers. I am still using my skimmer, but I may take it off line as soon as all the HA is gone. From the looks of things that shouldn't be much longer." Fragglerocks on the RC site: "Ive gotten rid of 95% of all "bad" algae in the DT and my P04 Level is 0.12 checked by Hanna meter. Nitrates - Zero. I feed the equivalent of 2 frozen cubes per day, along with pellets whenever I think about it. up to 2 times per day." Scrubit on the scrubber site: "have been running a scrubber-only 90gal tank for over a year now with great success. [...] I was ready to buy a big ol skimmer for my new tank build when I came across some of the info SM had posted. That was all it took, and I've never looked back. NEVER had algae in DT, NEVER had readable nitrates/phos after cycle, and have probably changed out maybe 40gal of water since setup. Personally I find running a scrubber almost as fun as the tank itself!" Psyops on the RC site: "I had a DSB and chaeto fuge. When I added a ATS, the chaeto disappeared. I don't know if the DSB is doing anything. I feed my fish and tank from 1-2 times daily depending on my schedule. The ATS is doing really well, especially when I added a Calcium reactor 3 months ago. I did not believe some of the stuff people were saying on how effective an ATS system could be, but they were mostly correct." JohnnyBinSD on the RC site: "I finally got around to putting an ATS on my tank 3 weeks ago. Just harvested a pile of algae off it tonight. In those 3 weeks I have doubled the amount of daily food I put in the tank, run the skimmer 6 hours/day instead of 24/7, and removed the lighting from the chaeto in the old fuge. Nitrates & phosphates are undetectable, algae in the display tank is almost nonexistent, fish are fat & happy. An ATS is the cheapest & most effective thing I've ever done to improve water quality. I wish I had built one sooner." Kcmopar on the MFT site: "Its been about 5 weeks (started the weekend before fathers day) or so and the green hair algae has stopped growing in my 40G. Yeah!!! Its all receding, maybe just a few percent left at the base of a couple rocks that my coral beauty snacks on. Just amazing. Started this 40G salt from Jump with an ATS. IT NEVER CYCLED!!! I have little pods, tiny feather dusters, and other critters thriving like crazy. Coraline already starting to spread across the tank. Nutrients are always zero to just barely detectable on both the 10g and 40g. Also a note on the 40G, I never had to do a water change yet!!! No test results ever got past barely detectable. I have been dabbling with an ATS on a 10 gallon Freshwater as well. Same results so far. I am building a bigger one for my 150G FW in a few weeks." Reeftanker on the MFUK site: "i have cleaned it about 8/10 times now, about 50-90 grams of algae each time and i have just tsted my tank i have on my test kits; Phosphates = clear that means undetectable levels on my test kit, Nitrates = 1ppm maybe 2ppm, what more do i have to say im am chuffed to bits and over the moon" Etan on the MFUK site: "Just to share some of my results with my scrubber. I set up my new tank at beginning of Jan(Rio 400). The only filtration I have on the tank is a scrubber and about 50kg of live rock. After the tank had cycled my nitrates peaked at about 25ppm about 2 weeks ago. There were only 2 clowns and 2 chromis in tank and small cuc. Just tested today after all stock and cuc from old tank have been in there for about 1 week and nitrate reading is only 2ppm and not much signs of algee in main tank or on glass. It seems to me the scrubber is doing its job." Weatherby68ss on the scrubber site: "i have been into this hobby for 3 years now and was using a wet /dry filter for the first year and a half or so untill i found out about algae scrubbers. i have to admit i would not still have an aquarium if not for my ats. its simply to much time, work and $$$ using any other type of filtration. with the ats i can actually sit back and enjoy my tank and keep my fish fat and happy with out worrying about the next water change because i hav'nt done 1 in over a year! anyone thats thinking about building 1 all i can say is go for it THEY WORK!!! nuff said" Mgraf on the RC site: "I have been running a scrubber for about 8 months now, at first I had a skimmer running, macro's, rock rubble, and deep sand bed. Same setup as you almost. I still have the deep sand bed but, eliminated the other stuff over time for the sake of simplicity. I clean the scrubbers algae once a week, do monthly water changes, feed often and alot, and my corals and fish have never been happier or fatter in the year and a half it has been set up. Many may disagree but, for me it is the easiest way to run a salt water reef." Jukka on the RC site: "I used to have various carbon sources + ATB Supersize skimmer as filtration for my 400 gal reef. I never succeeded to outcompete nutrient problems with those, no matter how much carbon I added. I also tried the pellet version. Since building a large scrubber with lots of light, all problems are gone. But I didn't take the skimmer out of the system and didn't stop carbon dosing, and don't intend to. I just reduced carbon amount to about 1/10 of the original. I like the effects carbon does for fungi, and other stuff like that, growth. Though other reason for keeping skimmer online is the amount I paid for the supersize ATB.
  19. When the screen gets thick, it's gonna block the light from the corals, so you many wanna move the corals. After you move the corals, you can put a black board/plastic behind the screen, touching the screen, it'll keep more bubbles on the screen.
  20. Looks good! Maybe put the light closer? If you can put a black board behind the screen would be even better!
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