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Waterbox 3620 first planted attempt

Wookii

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Makes sense on the doser, I’m going to stick with the premade for simplicity at this time, and will look into dry salts in the future. Will do as advised and make sure dosing every day from now on. On the label TNC complete states to dose only once a week I’m assuming that I take the weekly dose x3 and then divide by 7. With the water changes it seems more logical to dose daily than in 1 hit.
Yep, 3-4 x the standard weekly dose divided over 7 days. Per @Zeus.’s analysis in the fe calculator:

1618001095115.png


EI is 30ppm NO3 per week, so you probably need at least 3-4x that dose per week, so around 4ml per 10 litres, so 72ml per week - just over 10ml per day.

Bear in mind though, those values are based on one 50% water change a week, so if you are changing 50% per day, you need to increase that significantly to compensate.

If you are currently only dosing the standard TNC recommend dose of 18ml per week, it could well be the reason (along with the hard water iron issue Darrel mentions), that you are seeing some deficiencies.
 

Paul Kettless

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Hi all,

I think <"that is FeDTPA"> as the chelator, so it should be good.

It takes a while for new green leaves to appear after iron stops being <"Liebig's limiting nutrient">.

cheers Darrel
Thanks for the links Darrel, and the further information. I’m pleased that the TNC Iron will be suitable, that was ordered as it was the first to appear on Amazon, and more by chance than judgement lol. I have some red root floater that have been int he tank a couple of days now so they should help me see leaf changes quickly.

The links gave for some good reading, and if I have this right, I should be adding the Iron before lights on? And the AIO ferts when lights are on.... It seems froom the reading that its possible for iron supplement to change the water a yellow/brown colour. Thats a shame as I was hoping for a crystal clear water quality.

I also noticed that Magnesium was talked about, and adding via Epsom salts. Would you recommend this at this time, or should I hold off and see how the iron helps. I have to admit this is an all new experience for me, as when I was on the reef forums, the very first thing that they would teach a newbie was to never dose anything to your water column that you couldn’t measure parameters on.

Thanks all for your help and guidance.
 

Paul Kettless

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Yep, 3-4 x the standard weekly dose divided over 7 days. Per @Zeus.’s analysis in the fe calculator:

View attachment 166674

EI is 30ppm NO3 per week, so you probably need at least 3-4x that dose per week, so around 4ml per 10 litres, so 72ml per week - just over 10ml per day.

Bear in mind though, those values are based on one 50% water change a week, so if you are changing 50% per day, you need to increase that significantly to compensate.

If you are currently only dosing the standard TNC recommend dose of 18ml per week, it could well be the reason (along with the hard water iron issue Darrel mentions), that you are seeing some deficiencies.
Really helpful chart that, and on the basis off what you have provided, and the daily waters changes I have been doing, clearly has not been giving the plants what they need. I had read on several occasions that tropica soil gives off excess nutrients in its early stages and thought that dosing ferts heavily from the start would have just encouraged Algae. I have ordered some off the black fluval line for the Iron supplement. water changes are very other day for a week, and I will make sure that I dose 10ml of the TNC complete daily. Or would you suggest even more for the next couple of weeks until water changes settle down. Sorry for all the questions, but I want to get it right.
 

Wookii

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Really helpful chart that, and on the basis off what you have provided, and the daily waters changes I have been doing, clearly has not been giving the plants what they need. I had read on several occasions that tropica soil gives off excess nutrients in its early stages and thought that dosing ferts heavily from the start would have just encouraged Algae. I have ordered some off the black fluval line for the Iron supplement. water changes are very other day for a week, and I will make sure that I dose 10ml of the TNC complete daily. Or would you suggest even more for the next couple of weeks until water changes settle down. Sorry for all the questions, but I want to get it right.

No problem with the questions, that’s what this forum exists for - the sharing of knowledge.

Tropica soil does give off a lot of ammonia in the first week or two which is why you need to flush it out with the water changes. High ammonia levels can damage plants as you’ve probably already experienced with your AR mini.

I’m not sure what, if anyother nutrients the Tropica soils leaches though, and the plants are telling you they are missing something.

The fact that you are changing with tap water may have buffered your plants demands a little, depending on what it contains, but in a high light and CO2 enriched system, you need a lot of all the nutrients.

Ferts don’t cause algae in and of themselves, that is a fundamental principle of EI dosing. What often leads to algae is poor plant health, usually as a result of a nutrient or CO2 deficiency for the given light level.

What is the Fluval Iron supplement - I thought you were getting the TNC Iron? The point with the TNC iron that Darrel was making, is that it is DTPA chelated, and so lasts longer before breaking down in the higher pH of hard tap water. If you’ve bought a different brand, you need to check that it is also DTPA chelated. If not, then it’s no different to the iron in the TNC complete.

All that being said, the deficiency issues, if they are iron related, could simply be the result of low dosing of the TNC Complete, and you may see an improvement from the higher doing levels, without the additional iron.
 

Wookii

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Thanks for the links Darrel, and the further information. I’m pleased that the TNC Iron will be suitable, that was ordered as it was the first to appear on Amazon, and more by chance than judgement lol. I have some red root floater that have been int he tank a couple of days now so they should help me see leaf changes quickly.

The links gave for some good reading, and if I have this right, I should be adding the Iron before lights on? And the AIO ferts when lights are on.... It seems froom the reading that its possible for iron supplement to change the water a yellow/brown colour. Thats a shame as I was hoping for a crystal clear water quality.

I also noticed that Magnesium was talked about, and adding via Epsom salts. Would you recommend this at this time, or should I hold off and see how the iron helps. I have to admit this is an all new experience for me, as when I was on the reef forums, the very first thing that they would teach a newbie was to never dose anything to your water column that you couldn’t measure parameters on.

Thanks all for your help and guidance.

Iron supplements won’t colour the water brown, if they do you are adding in far far too much. Only the other more extreme chelates can give the water a red/pink tinge.

Adding additional magnesium might be a good idea, as TNC complete doesn’t contain very much, and there is a high chance that there is very little in your tap water.

You should be able to get a report from your water company showing the contents of your tap water - that may or may not tell you the Magnesium content. That said, adding some additional Epsom Salts will do no harm.
 

dw1305

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Hi all,
What is the Fluval Iron supplement - I thought you were getting the TNC Iron? The point with the TNC iron that Darrel was making, is that it is DTPA chelated, and so lasts longer before breaking down in the higher pH of hard tap water. If you’ve bought a different brand, you need to check that it is also DTPA chelated. If not, then it’s no different to the iron in the TNC complete.
Yes it is just the chelator that is important.
I should be adding the Iron before lights on?
I don't actually know, I'd guess that it doesn't make any practical difference.
I also noticed that Magnesium was talked about, and adding via Epsom salts. Would you recommend this at this time, or should I hold off and see how the iron helps.
Yes like @Wookii says add <"some magnesium (Mg)">, your unlikely to have any in your tap water <"for geological reasons">, and there isn't really a downside in hard water. Personally I don't add either iron or magnesium in a <"very scientific manner">, mainly because I've been <"watching the plants"> for a <"long time now">.
I have to admit this is an all new experience for me, as when I was on the reef forums, the very first thing that they would teach a newbie was to never dose anything to your water column that you couldn’t measure parameters on.
Yes, it is a bit different with marine aquariums, you have a consistent datum and high levels of <"many of the metal ions">. You need to add calcium (Ca), because the hard corals, molluscs and coralline algae are continually depleting calcium (Ca++) and bicarbonate (HCO3) from the water column as they grow.

Reefs are also highly oligotrophic situations so it is much <"more of a black and white scenario"> with regards to <"nitrogen">, phosphorus etc.

cheers Darrel
 
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Paul Kettless

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What is the Fluval Iron supplement - I thought you were getting the TNC Iron? The point with the TNC iron that Darrel was making, is that it is DTPA chelated, and so lasts longer before breaking down in the higher pH of hard tap water. If you’ve bought a different brand, you need to check that it is also DTPA chelated. If not, then it’s no different to the iron in the TNC complete.
Sorry I wasn’t explaining myself, the fluval is just some black tubing for the dosing unit as I had been reading that when dosing iron the solution should not be exposed to daylight and sitting in the clear tubing can have an impact under the lights.

My delivery of TNC iron has arrived and the destructions just tells me 1ml/10 litres adds -1 Fe (ppm) As I have around 180 litres in tank should I start with 18ml. And if so how frequently would you suggest I dose.
 

John q

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I believe the full ei suggestion for Fe is only 0.5ppm per week Paul and doubt your tank would consume that. So I'd probably be adding .5ml per 10l or even a bit less if you're adding extra tnc complete.
I add micros before the lights come on and split the dose over 2 or 3 days.

I'm a learner like you so more than open to correction on above info.
 
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Paul Kettless

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Well it's been about a month and I thought that it was time to give an update of the tank. It's been running for 8 weeks now and the plants seem to be settling in reasonably well. It's been fun and games, and the c02 is a constant battle, some days the drop checker is almost blue others a nice green. With my filter and nero 3 I have the flow at around 9x turnover.

The siamensis 53b still has pale green leaves, as does the pogostemon. Funnily enough the pogostemon was a culture plant and seems to be growing quite slowly. I lost quite a lot of leaves on thr Anubias, and a couple of plants melted all together. The rotala orange juice I bought started well but has slowed down quite a lot.

I am now doing a 50% water change on the weekend and a 25% mid week, only as I now have occupants. I decided on a shoal of black tetras, gorgeous fish and in my opinion very underrated.

For ferts I am dosing 8ml TNC complete and 2ml TNC iron daily.

The red root floaters are growing very quickly indeed, as is the pinitifida and starting to block out the light to the stem plants. I'm guessing in a new set up that's not maybe a bad thing. The ONF light seems very powerful and I am currently. Only running it at 55% power for 6 hours a day. I'm not really sure when and how often I should increase the intensity.
 

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Wookii

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CO2 fluctuation can often be due to a bad needle valve. The ones that come with kits (like the CO2 Art ones) are generally pretty poor, and can result in very different injection rates day to day and be hard to fine tune.
 

aquascape1987

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The ones that come with kits (like the CO2 Art ones) are generally pretty poor, and can result in very different injection rates day to day and be hard to fine tune

Is there a way to replace and upgrade the ones that come with CO2 Art kits? If so, with what?

I don’t have fluctuations as much as this, BUT, I have to say I was disappointed with the ridiculously high sensitivity of the needle valves that came with my Elite Pro regulator. They are so sensitive, they are almost unworkable to fine tune and make small alterations
 

Wookii

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Is there a way to replace and upgrade the ones that come with CO2 Art kits? If so, with what?

I don’t have fluctuations as much as this, BUT, I have to say I was disappointed with the ridiculously high sensitivity of the needle valves that came with my Elite Pro regulator. They are so sensitive, they are almost unworkable to fine tune and make small alterations

These are good, the adjustment nut is quite stiff so it can’t be accidentally rotated, and the rotations result in a small adjustment in flow, plus it has a locking nut for extra security once you’ve set it. They also don’t seem to fluctuate with temperature etc.


There may be a way to attach them directly to the CO2 aluminium housing, but I just run it inline:

image.jpg
 

Paul Kettless

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Well its been a while so time for a bit of an update, and its been quite an eventful couple of weeks. I guess a tale of two halves. I have been running an Aquael Ultramax 1500 that I bought brand new in Feb this year, and only made it onto the tank after the delays in my tank arriving. My first impressions were actually very good, it had adequate flow, and was super quiet. In fact, I had to touch it on several occasions to make sure that it was actually working. Therefore, I thought that it was £170.00 well spent. Well that was until last week, when I did some routine maintenance, went to plug it back in and the pump would not switch on, changed the fuse, nothing. major pump failure and not even 3 months old.

With no spare, I jumped on the phone to a chap who gets my livestock and he helped me out with a matured sponge filter and an Eheim 400 air pump. I had to quite literally dump all the media trays and sponges into the tank and off course made a right mess. On a side note I was hugely impressed with the effectiveness of the sponge filter, it had my tank super clear in less than 24 hours. Not bad considering he tells me they cost around 16 quid and then the cost of the air pump and a bit of hose. Will def consider this route if I ever get my fish room up and running,

I contacted Aquael by phone call and email and guess what, no replies at all. In fact, to this day I still have had no contact and its been well over a week. In desperation I decided to bite the bullet and ordered a Biomaster 850t And thought that I can fight with Aquael and the supplier later without the worry of the tank running correctly. I wont mention names at this time, but they have been just as bad with no contact made or any offers of how to sort the issue. If it had not have been for the aid of this chap with the sponge filter I now would have a tank full of dead fish, shrimps and plants.

I read some of the warnings on this site regarding the Aquaels, and thought that it was worth a punt, and how wrong was I. Customer support and after sales is non existent, and I would advise all to avoid like the plague. In relation to the Biomaster 850t it's also a two sided story, it shifts water, the 1550lph over the 1500 of the Aquael almost appears double in performance, my water is crystal clear, almost like fish are floating in the air. The pre filter seems excellent and seems very well made. However, and this is a big however, the filter is constantly purging air and is unacceptably noisy, I only have to slightly nudge the filter and it has huge amounts of air trapped. I have been in touch with Oase and the difference in customer service is light and day. They have been very helpful, but doesn’t stop the problem. The constant hum from the filter Is so loud that I can hear it in my kitchen some 30ft away, and my daughter whose bedroom is above the tank says that she can hear it in her room.
Out tank is in our living room, and the constant hum is clearly audible over my TV and thats fitted with a sound bar.

I have ran Eheims, fluvals, JBL etc over the 20 odd years I have been keeping tanks and none have ever been this bad. Ironically, the Aquael was the quietest one that I have ever owned, its just a shame that it didn’t last longer than 3 months and has crap back up.

So to be honest, I feel like I have jumped straight out of the pan and into the fire, only on this occasions I have spent a small fortune on the 850t, and quite frankly I expected better from Oase. I just cannot see how all these high profile aquascapers are Shouting high praise for these filters, or maybe I am just dead unlucky.

I’m sure that if I can remove the air, and stop the filter from purging it will most probably get quieter, or at least thats what I am hoping will happen. Oase have suggested that they are going to send me a completely new filter and we can only see from there how it goes. From the reading on this site, I’m not holding my breath.

On a positive note I seem to have been able to dial the co2 in a bit better, and the drop checker is now showing green. Some of the plants are developing quite nicely, but some not so well. The Pogostomen erectus is growing so slowly, likewise my Siemensis 53b. For stock, I now have black neons, lemon tetras and Venezuelan Corys. All fish are doing very well.

I will take a few shots and pop them on after this post.
 
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Paul Kettless

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A few tank shots
 

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Ian61

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Hello Paul. Deja vu for me. Not sure whether you’ve seen my previous posts re 850t. Long story short , you’ve described my filter. In the living room but loud enough to hear upstairs and regular air purge. We ended up turning it off if we wanted quiet time. Oase suggested new impeller. No change. Dealer agreed with my suggestion of swapping 850 head with 600 head. Bought 600 head for £59.99 with promise of refund when I returned 850 head.
Unfortunately 600 head only marginally quieter, I think. Interestingly the clips fixing the 600 head required far more effort to engage than on the 850 which seems to explain why the 850 purges air, and the 600 doesn’t at all. Also the flow rate seems very similar in terms of water movement within the tank.

Regards, Ian
 

John q

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Glad there was some good news at the end of the post pal. Lol.
I just cannot see how all these high profile aquascapers are Shouting high praise for these filters, or maybe I am just dead unlucky.

You're not unlucky mate, its called advertising. I'm afraid some of these "top aquascapers" would advertise the emperors new clothes if the payment validated it.
 

Ian61

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You're not unlucky mate, its called advertising. I'm afraid some of these "top aquascapers" would advertise the emperors new clothes if the payment validated it.
I share your cynicism. Unfortunately £299.99 too late. 😠
 
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