Twinstar Setting Suggestions For Low Tech . . .

Wookii

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Hey guys,

Having replanted my sons tank with a load of Anubias and crypts, I will be attempting running the tank low tech/low energy, perhaps with the addition of Glute (I know that technically means it’s not low tech as such).

I need to set the lighting controller on the Twinstar 600S. Can anyone suggest an appropriate lighting intensity and duration?

I currently have it on 25% which is fairly dim, but probably sufficient for the Crypts, Anubias, Buce and ferns. However I also have a small amount of Lilaeopsis brasiliensis and Eleocharis at the front, that I’m hoping will eventually carpet a little (I appreciate this could take the best part of a year low tech). I also have some Frogbit covering about 1/4 of the surface.
 

john dory

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Hiya.
I run my 900s as follows
30 min ramp up to 45%
6 hrs at 45%
30 min ramp down to 3%
1 hr at 3%
lights off
Do inject a bit of gas though..nowhere near 30 ppm.
 

MWood

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I started my low tech, 600S setup on around 45%, but quickly went up from that- I think it's now up to at least 80% at its peak. I have similar planting to you, including a slow burning carpet of Lilaeopsis (and Marsilea hirsuta & E/H tenellum 'Green'). I found that it seemed to work best jacking the light up to make sure the plants were satisfied, but doing pretty hefty water changes at least twice a week, up to 90% for the first month or two. This was during lockdown mind, so more time on my hands than usual! Only ever had a small amount of thread algae, which I don't really mind.

Floating plants definitely helped too.
 

MWood

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Meant to say - think I started on a 6 hour duration, not including the ramp up and down, but this has now been extended to 8 now that the system is pretty stable. During the summer when I didn't have much rainwater, I didn't water change for 3/4 weeks at a time.
 

Tim Harrison

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The plants you have can all survive with very little light; most have low light compensation points. I think keeping light below 50% intensity is good advice.
However, it depends on what you hope to achieve. If you're happy just letting it tick over there is no real reason to increase light intensity too much.

If however, you'd like a bit more growth, up the intensity gradually and observe. If algae starts to creep in you can always lower intensity to the previous setting. You may also find that the greater the plant density the higher the light intensity you can get away with, especially if you have floating plants and plants that grow leaves across the surface.
 

Wookii

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Thanks for all the feedback guys. I’ve upped the light a little to 35% as 25% seemed a little dim. I’m sure it would have been fine for the Anubias and crypts, but I want to try get the eleocharis to take.

Planting density is fairly high as I had a LOT of plants to use up:

86AA7FFF-A2D9-4770-B006-7F6535DED7F1.jpeg
I would like the carpet to grow in a bit, but the tank is so heavily planted elsewhere, I’d be happy if they didn’t grow much at all. Once the carpet is grown in a bit, I want to back things down to virtual stasis - this is designed to be an absolutely minimum maintenance tank.
 

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