The perfect Co2 DIY!

Discussion in 'General Freshwater Information' started by Plantman, Apr 5, 2010.

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  1. Plantman

    Plantman Plankton

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2010
    Messages:
    10
    Firstly, in order to grow plants you’ll need a filter system that doesn’t disturb the surface of the water to much, such as a canister filter system. THERE IS NO OTHER WAY!
    HOB will NOT work!


    What you’ll need,

    Two, 1.8 liter to 2 liter “glass” pickle jars
    About 10 feet of clear plastic air hose
    Two, good quality plastic air valves
    Two, straight air hose connectors
    One, 3-way hose connector
    One, 2 to 3 foot piece of heat-bendable hard plastic tubing, you heat it and bend it.
    One, tube of clear silicone
    One, metal hole punch the same thickness or slightly smaller then the thickness of your plastic air hose tubing (Looks like a screwdriver only it comes to a point like an ice pick)

    First, screw the lids on the bottles tightly and use your hole punch to punch a hole in the center of the lids. Then remove the lids and silicone the two straight connectors into the holes in the bottles, place silicone around the connector and push it into the hole, then use your finger the put silicone on the top and bottom of the lid around the connector, like in the picture. Let it dry overnight.

    Next, cut 2 pieces of plastic hosing 2 feet in length and one long enough to reach the top of the tank from where you plan to locate the two bottles.

    The next day connect the two lid air hoses and the long one that will go to the tank all to the 3-way connector like in the pictures. You’re almost done!

    Now, you need to use your stove element as a heating tool to bend and shape the hard plastic tubing. I started from the point it was entering the filter intake and worked my way back. You may need to cut a small piece like I have out of the intake filter in order to get the plastic tubing into it. Make it small or you’ll be losing small fish to the bottom of you canisters.

    Change one bottle every two weeks, 1 cup white sugar, 1 teaspoon baker’s years, 1/2 teaspoon Baking powder. Use water from your tank, completely mix sugar and baking powder then add yeast and disturb lightly just to get the yeast to sink. If you change one bottle every 2 weeks you Co2 flow will never be interrupted. Don’t use tap water, the chlorine kills the yeast.

    Buy a KH and PH test kit,

    [​IMG]

    In order to get a really nice, mostly algae free planted tank you need to have enough plant life. The plants use up all the nutrients so the algae have non to grow. Plants store energy and can continue growing when there is little or no nutrients in the water (for a short time). Algae cannot store energy and will die almost immediately without nutrient rich water. However, in order for plants to grow they need 3 major things, water, light and Co2 (lots of water, light and Co2) as well as the basic nutrients that are in your tap water already (no need to use fertilizers). Just change 10-15% of your tanks water every week and you’ll be fine. Once your tank gets a little more plant populated then mine you might want to consider adding a small amount of fertilizer with your water change.


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    1 month ago,
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    Today,
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    Last edited: Apr 5, 2010
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  3. 2in10

    2in10 Super Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2009
    Messages:
    19,258
    Location:
    Sparks, NV
    Very nice, good list of supplies and steps to take.
     
  4. Plantman

    Plantman Plankton

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2010
    Messages:
    10
    Thank you, I just hope someone will find it useful. What I went through to learn what I know…LOL. I hope my post can save people from some of my early plant growing failures. I mean, I had some “real” catastrophes, the tearing down the tank and starting over type catastrophes! LOL

    I think I have discovered something about DIY Co2 production times using bakers yeast NOT “Brewers yeast”. So I thought I’d post it too.

    Two weeks ago when I did my bottle change I noticed that my Filter system started spewing large fine bubbles within the hour. It did this for about 24 hours and over that time the bubbles gradually got finer and finer until they were gone.

    I think what is going on, is that with the bottles filled to the level they are in the picture, it takes 24 hours for the bottle to push out the oxygen that is in the bottle from cleaning it, and replacing it. I think the bottles produce pure Co2 in just 24 hours. The two bottles at there peak “Co2” produce 35 large bubbles per minute. The system produces at least 35 bubbles per minute, the only time it drops is for about an hour after a change to about 17, for the 24 hours after that the system actually produces way more bubbles starting at between 45-50 and then dropping down to 35 over the course of the 24 hours. Before I forget, here is some actual numbers. KH sits at 6.7 and my PH sits pretty steady at 6.8. Every two weeks for 24 hours the Co2 drops to about 20ppm ( ph7.0) and climbs to 35 (ph6.8 ) over the course of 24 hours. The Fish appear unaffected by the change in PH. The tank has a pretty solid 30ppm which costs just 15mins of my time and less then a dollars worth of supplies!

    So I think that this proves beyond a shadow of a doubt that DIY Co2 if done right is every bit as good as just about any expensive retail Co2 system for up to 46 gallons. Anyone wanting to grow plants in an aquarium up to at least 46gallons, with just a pinch of know-how, can and at very little cost to them have a very effective Co2 system on there tank!

    I would welcome any comments from people who have more experience then me with DIY Co2 systems. I wonder what problems people may have run into while using a similar system to mine.

    Anyway,

    Thanks for reading.

    Shawn
     
    Last edited: Apr 6, 2010