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This should be fun! ReefBot


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On 9/7/2020 at 6:00 PM, obrien.david.j said:

I've read whats important is ratio of Nitrate and Phosphate.   15:1 is the right range.   Yours is 14:1 (at 10 NO3 : 0.7 P04, which we know has NO3 wide range)    I'm not there yet...  working on it.

I wouldn't chase numbers, its not an exact science in the glass (or acrylic) box we call our ocean

 

Nice pickup on the meter!!@TheClark

Edited by reefnjunkie
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I like to see my water parameters in my phone when wake up in the morning...lol  

First impressions are: - Cool hardware, cool idea, looks like a mix of a 3d printer with of course many more functional parts. - Very methodical (carefully does the steps humans may be tempt

We crossed threads   Yes, in addition, its because the Trident is so freaking awesome. Life happens, robots keep doing their jobs, reefs need stability, robots help there.  I am sold! Would

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1 hour ago, reefnjunkie said:

I wouldn't chase numbers, its not an exact science in the glass (or acrylic) box we call our ocean

 

Nice pickup on the meter!!@TheClark

Thanks Brad! 

There are some videos out there of amazing tanks like Sanjays with higher nutrients.

Maybe I was better off not knowing :nutty:

Do you still run GFO?  I quit years ago and never noticed until I tested last week.  In the mean time, I have never had a better tank 😂

No one can touch your reef skills at least in my book :icon_bow:

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Getting ready to draw nitrate bottle 1, stirring better than I ever would... 

They use teflon coated stirring magnets, and the stirrer moves with the syringe just under the bottle.  Allot of nice thoughtful design in this thing...

 

 

90B40F0F-3CBE-4F4D-9A08-D6810862A134.jpeg

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Seems to match up pretty well with trident (8.1 and 8.17). 

This test uses only one vial, which is nice.  I like having a second opinion on the arguably most critical param.

The resolution is not nearly as fine as the trident, but allot of extremely successful reefers do just fine with red sea pro alk test.  So I am not sweating that too much...  I could try other alk tests but with the trident not feeling motivated, Trident is clearly superior for alk.

Detailed shot, you can see the titration, pretty cool.  I really don't love doing these by hand (did it change this drop?  or the next drop?).  

So far so good!

 

image.png

 

 

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Nitrate continues to drop, even though the test shows 5ppm for a while, you can see the color shifting or use mspaint eyedropper tool to measure the color changes...

Feeling good about reefbot, would never have tested nitrate this much myself...  Rather do other stuff with the tank!

 

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47 minutes ago, SuncrestReef said:

I'm curious...what have you been doing to reduce the nitrates?

Nothing at all surprisingly!  Perhaps the coral and live rock are doing their thing. 

There was one epiphany though...  Just a bit before adding the bot, I tied in my son's neglected system.  It's only sixty gallons but its possible it added something to the main system.  No tests were done on his water before tying it in.  Certainly his tank is night and day, so I think his water received the better end of the deal.

Phosphates are annoying enough that it was time to break out the LaCL, have not used that in years.  Going super slow and working those down into a normal range too.  It will be nice to switch back to the low range checker again...

Maybe ignorance is bliss, because I have some truly massive colonies, growth and color everywhere.  Perhaps I should leave it all alone.. its tough to say.  Probably not in a reef keepers DNA though to leave much of anything alone.

All in all, it's nice to have data with a press of a button.  It just appeals to me personally...  I blame the trident, because it is so good I wanted more!  Cannot wait for APEX to come out with more params... 

Liking the bot!  

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Been testing every 2 days for nitrate.  It continues to drop by itself, a bit too low now unfortunately.  Maybe ignorance is bliss?

Anywhooo... This is kind of cool to see that the test is 0-5 result for many iterations, but you can see the color moving towards yellow.  Gives a person a chance to guess where between 0 and 5 we are...

 

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How many parameters do you have it testing currently? I would personally be curious to see how it matches up to trident Ca and Mag also.

 

Is using the API test more accurate with reefbot? I just found it odd that they use so many API tests which most say are garbage lol. Maybe too much human error and the tests are fine if it’s read with an optical sensor?

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22 hours ago, Blue Z Reef said:

How many parameters do you have it testing currently? I would personally be curious to see how it matches up to trident Ca and Mag also.

 

Is using the API test more accurate with reefbot? I just found it odd that they use so many API tests which most say are garbage lol. Maybe too much human error and the tests are fine if it’s read with an optical sensor?

Good questions!

Currently running phophate, alk, and nitrate, there are three open slots left.  I would like to use them for iodine, but that test kit is not available in the US right now.

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I did do alk to see if it compares to trident, it compared quite well.

 

The API is popular I think because it is cheap.  Another criteria for popularity is number of vial locations used.  I do believe it is decently accurate for nitrate just on this limited experiment, or lets say at least consistent.  That said, I  do have fauna marin nitrate pro ready to go once API runs out.

 

Calcium is a pain to test, I should order some and load it up.  Putting allot of faith in trident though, which honestly from a user experience is quite a bit superior to reefbot still.  The flexibility is where trident is weak I suppose.

As a busy guy, with a young family, I highly recommend both to you.  Takes some of the work out of reefing and the disappointments for sure.  Christmas is just around the corner :)

 

 

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Haha I have trident, don’t know how I survived without it (well...I just didn’t test lol!). It’s good feedback to see Alk numbers so close, was just wondering about Ca/Mg to verify. Repeatability is key in this game so if different tests are showing the same, I have greater faith in them. My only beef with trident is the numbers swing a bit at the very end of the bottle (like last 6-8% remaining), more so for Ca and Mag then Alk from what I’ve observed. 

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2 hours ago, Blue Z Reef said:

Haha I have trident, don’t know how I survived without it (well...I just didn’t test lol!). It’s good feedback to see Alk numbers so close, was just wondering about Ca/Mg to verify. Repeatability is key in this game so if different tests are showing the same, I have greater faith in them. My only beef with trident is the numbers swing a bit at the very end of the bottle (like last 6-8% remaining), more so for Ca and Mag then Alk from what I’ve observed. 

Duh, I remember, glad you do!  Good to know on the swing, since I use trident to control the reactor that is a bit of a big deal... hmmm...

 

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Indeed, it was time to switch!  Running .08, not .34...

A few button clicks and the robot goes to work!   Not the robots fault, my fault.  Manual or automatic testing this mistake could have been made.

Sooooo nice to be back to a reasonable phosphate.  LaCL dosing got me there...  Backing that off and monitoring daily so it doesn't crash to zero...

 

 

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  • 3 weeks later...

Quick Update:

I am quite pleased with this reefbot. 

I run nitrate, phosphate and iodine daily, and occasionally alk just to double check the trident.  Ultimately I will back these off when things stabilize.  I went from testing those params maybe a few times a year to testing all of them daily, crazy!

It dependable so far, no complaints at all.

My nitrates are down to zero now, which is surprising as they had been up near 50 in this very thread. 

I did nothing to reduce them, the live rock did its thing I guess.

Now, I cannot dump enough food in to raise them, so I am experimenting with nitrate dosing. 

Once nitrates crashed, phosphate did increase, so I am curious to see if it will go down again as nitrates go up.

Without the reefbot I wouldn't test often enough to experiment like this.  Life is just too busy.

Tank is doing awesome, baby steps on all this stuff, don't want to ruin a good thing...

 

 

 

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 2 months later...

Wow, time flies!  Going on 5 months now apparently.

So the reefbot is still running like a champ.  I get regular phosphate and nitrate tests, pretty much zero effort on my part.  Kind of a dream come true coupled with a Trident  for the busy reefer.

Test Kits In Use

- API Nitrate saltwater:  Cheap, accurate for my needs.  I have the Tropic Marin ready to go, just have not used up the API yet.

- Alkalinity: Red sea

- Iodine:  Colombo saltwater (had to order overseas, PM if you need some I know the guy)

- Phosphate:  Red sea low range.

 

Some Random Pros / Cons:

+ Phosphate, Nitrate running every 2 days, interleaved.  

+ Iodine test once a week.  I use the iodine test to make sure I am not overdosing reef plus

+ Alk on demand, when I want to double check the trident.

- Iodine tests had to be ordered from overseas, they are hard to get.

- Running tests 4 times a day would be expensive.  It's possible though.

+ Incredibly flexible, you can test all kinds of things

+ Reliable.  Only one time it has been down, due to losing my wifi connections

- Slow-ish to get help when you need it.  It took a few days to clear up a simple error when the reefbot somehow forgot my wifi access info.

+ Locally amazon sourced syringes and pumps are available if you need them.  Documented by people in groups on FB.

- This thing is loud.  You were warned :)  Worst thing ever when it fires off during a work call.

 

Dashboard thoughts

So as far as the dashboard, I have to admit, I don't use it much.  I am mostly just watching the results and seeing if I need to correct anything.  

For example, I slowly worked my LaCL dosing down from 12 mls per day down to zero as phosphates levelled out.  It was a very controlled reduction vs some previous rapid changes / crashes in the past.

Better than Trident?

Definitely not better, more flexible.  They each have their strong points.

More Flexible, More Parameters?  ReefBot.  

Cost Effective Testing:  Trident (it is inexpensive to test alk 4x per day!)

Sound levels:  Trident, no comparison

Support:  That's a toss up, varies by personal account

Reliability:  Probably trident, flexibility comes at a cost.  A locked in experience makes it easier to support, less variables.  Note that both have been great for me though.

If APEX made a Trident 2 that tested Phophate and Nitrate, I wouldn't hesitate to add it to the arsenal...

If I could only buy 1, it would be the APEX because it tests the big 3, multiple times a day, for a reasonable cost.

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Missed this thread the first time around - will need to go back and read from the start but glad to see a detailed review and long term test of the ReefBot for comparison.  Love the flexibility you get with this which is an attraction if you aren't already tied to Apex.

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