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Thread: Results of Successful Scrubbers (newest at end)

  1. #1
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    Results of Successful Scrubbers (newest at end)

    Today's success story comes from "BearUSA" on the TR site. He did what many folks call the "combined" approach... using lots of things in addition to his scrubber to help eliminate his nuisance algae. Wish he had more pics, but here is the before:





    And after:


    Hi-Res: http://www.radio-media.com/fish/UserBea ... eef-10.jpg


    Here is his setup:




    And here is what he said along the way:

    8/21: this guide is awesome, i,m gonna be building me one of these as soon as i get some time to myself, thanks for posting this so everyone can see and share.

    9/10: what is the best way to get rid of nuisance algae, despite regular water changes and picking this stuff off the rocks it keeps growing back, my nitrates are 0ppm confirmed with 2 different test kits. my phosphates are also 0ppm with different tests. i have since set up a turf algae screen but that has only been running for a day and a half so its not working yet.

    9/10: [waterfall pipe is] just an ordinary gravel vac pipe, fed by my external canister filter, the light is above at the mo i need to go out and buy some brackets and 2 light fixtures so i can have a light either side of screen, the other end of the gravel vac pipe has a water tight access plug, so i can still get in to clean the pipe. this nuisance algae just keeps on growing despite regular water changes picking it off the rocks, this stuff is ugly no matter what i do it just dont wont to disapear, this turf filter is my last resort.

    9/13: i am determined to get this right but sometimes its so disheartning to see a tank that you try your very best to get things right to just keep getting covered in crap algae.

    9/18: over the last couple of days i have noticed the nuisance algae i've been suffering with is eventually starting to die off. i'm sure the second 60 litre tank that i placed my calurpa green grape and cheato are starting to take up the nutrients before the nuisance stuff, i'm so pleased today that my tank is half way to looking great again.

    9/20: i have done 2 small water changes whilst siphoning out as much as possible, i'm quite glad now i,m eventually getting back on track, my water is crystal clear all params are spot on, i had feared of water turning a bit yellowy with the release off the nutrients from the dying algae but i have had none of that. [...] hopefully fingers crossed i,ve got a hold on this now.

    9/23: [answering "how did you do it"]: it could be a number of elements, i took on board all the advice which i received which im totally greatful for, i set up a 60 litre tank next to my main dt and filled it with a 4 inch deep sand bed, plus added culurpa green grape and cheato, i set up a temporary turf algae filter as suggested by Santa Monica in his thread under mega powerful nitrate and phosphate remover, i have continuously picked at the stuff and used a toothbrush to gently wipe over the rocks and inside the nooks and crannys, no doubt scaring my fish half to death, the only thing i haven't done yet is to replace the skimmer, i should say upgrade the skimmer, currently running a red sea pro prism, i had advice to get rid of it and get a better one. and also added another koralia 2 to improve water circulation which i placed at the bottom of dt to serge current over sand bed. increased slightly the amount of water i take out for water change, from about 90litres to about 125litres every 2 to 3 weeks. on the whole it could be any number of things i have done if not all, and once again i would like to thank all of you for your advice and recommendations.

    10/6: this thread is really getting interesting now with all the different people posting and for santa monica posting pics of the scrubbers, etc. GOOD WORK SANTA MONICA KEEP IT UP

    10/9: i,ve nearly cracked it, this nuisance algae have a look at these pics to see, i'm over the moon its nearly all gone.

    10/16: i've been running my scrubber for about a month and a half now, n and p are zero, i have always had a zero n and p reading using the salifert test kits, but when i had that nuisance algae problem i was told the kits were registering zero because it was quite possible that the algae were taken it all in. if that makes any sense. ps another note i'd like to thank you again for your hard work and commitmant in keeping this thread a live and with the great pics your posting up, keep up the good work, without your posting of this thread i wouldn't have even known about these turf filters, so once again a BIG THANKYOU.
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  2. #2
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    Re: Results of Successful Scrubbers

    Today's success story is from "keifer1122" on the RS site. He got the pre-grown screen from Inland Aquatics, and put a powerful bulb on both sides (even though the screen comes only one-sided, he wanted it to grow on the other side too.) His results took six weeks. Here are his comments, highly edited for readability:

    9/23: its a pre grown screen from IA. [...] my nitrates are up, its only been 2 weeks and it looks like there at a stand still, but im feeding heavily, lot of anemones in there. also where the light is the brightest theres a certain type of algae that looks like an oil spill , its got a rainbow of colors yellowish greenish brown. also no yellowing in my water. [...] i run a skimmer just cause my numbers are up there, but when there down to nuthing then ill remove.






    its a 75g with 29g sump, the lights i use are 40 watt cfls comparable to 150w, but today i picked up the big daddy cfl 65 watt/300 watt comparable 3,900 lumens. so i cleaned yesterday to the point where everything was off except for the red turf that didnt come off, plus i want that to grow i think. but the screen was bare and today the screen is covered. been in for 2 weeks, not much growth the first week. but adjusted to my tank and now my first week cleaning was about the same growth that grew (lol) in one day. [...] right now i have toooo many fish... a buddy i work with was gettin out and i bought his liivestock and equip...

    yellow tang
    hippo tang
    big royal gramma
    blue green chromis
    2 clownfish
    mandarin
    coral beauty
    small bangaii cardinal

    ...and i only have about 35 lbs of liverock, maybe. thats pushin it. 2" sandbed, run an undersized skimmer, i think euro reef made for 55g. i test with api nitrate test, and i lost the color chart, but yellow good, red bad, im orange. and since ive been testing it looks like its getting a lighter color. [It] was usually just goin up everyday, but with the new light i think that will speed up the growing process.

    9/26: i cleaned monday and today is friday, and i have to clean again. [...] the other side is getting there, still needs to catch up tho. [...] no lights on a timer, runnin it for 24/7. [although should be changed to 18 hours ON, and 6 hours OFF]. pump is on a timer, 30 [seconds] on 30 off, its just that the screen from IA was one sided and thats why the other side has to catch up.

    10/23: just chimming in to say my n and p are undetectable.(!)

  3. #3
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    Re: Results of Successful Scrubbers

    .
    Many folks have been asking about the solar setup. Well that fellow is the success story of the day. "Bob the (reef)builder" on the MASA site originally set up this screen that I posted a few weeks ago:



    Here are his updates:

    9/21: Thank you for the input Santa monica, I will definately be doing this on an expanded basis. I think I will put a three ft tank in the sun and do what you've got on a slightly larger scale. Great simple fix to an ongoing problem by most aquarists.

    9/28: The film is plastic and gets wet totally. Its 1m x 1m in size. The water input is also the stand. The strands run diagnally which makes the water flow very nicely. I'm happy with it and will let it stand in the sun. Hopefully get rid of the hair algae problem I have. You should see my actual tank to know why I jumped at this idea. The construction is so easy though. And if it works a quarter as well as Santa says it does, it will be like Christmas.

    10/19: I changed this one as the upright design did not get enought sun. I put it on a 45degree angle and that was better:



    10/25: It worked like a bomb. Phosphates down to 0.02 - 0.01 ppm (this is on a hanna meter and is very low). Normal test would just read undetectable. [Previously] the best I ever got it to trying every trick in the book including Zeo and Vodka, Lanthinum and many other phosphate removers was 0.03.
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    Re: Results of Successful Scrubbers

    It's great to see such a variety of different designs.
    I presume this one is being kept outdoors in a pretty warm climate? Are there any problems with contaminants being blown into it, or is there a glass/plastic screen to go over it?
    Nice to see one that's very environmentally friendly =)

  5. #5
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    Re: Results of Successful Scrubbers

    It's in South Amercia. No protection that he spoke of.

  6. #6
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    Re: Results of Successful Scrubbers

    .
    Results Of The Day:

    Corinna on the AC site: "Think we should just call you Santa!! After 3 weeks my screen is forming wine red spots, the pods are having pod parties and making babies, the seahorses are noticeably gaining weight and the water is decidedly 'sparklier'.Thanks."

    jfdelacruz on the RP site: "Overfeeding does wonders! i dont know how and why but, the ATS seems to be an extra 20 gallons for my tank because even if I overfeed, nothing in my tank seems to be going bad! water is always crystal clear too! (I do have seagel in there running for about 2 months already) this ATS is a blessing."
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  7. #7
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    Re: Results of Successful Scrubbers

    Results Of The Day:

    "pong" on the RP site: "Still havent cleaned my screen... and no water change... no problems! im just killing the pods by dosing kalk and all my top-off on the screen (since early october, no cleaning of the screen, last water change... august? september?)

    "jski711" on the RS site: "the last phosphate test I had done at the lfs it was undetectable on the hanna phosphate photometer, and I only have the one side of my screen lit for now!!!"

    "col" on the UR site: "Todays tests are P = 0.03, N = 5. the algae looks the same, green slime. Skimmer is still running 24/7, feeding 2-3 times a day for fat fish. Algae on the rocks is subsiding, and water conditions have never been better."

  8. #8
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    Re: Results of Successful Scrubbers

    Result Of The Day:

    "garypower" on the UR site: "i was on one of the first couple of pages on this thread and decided like others to give it a go! my screen is now 2 months on, and its there as predicted, full of algea turf deep red brown colour and having to start using a blade to make space! my tank parems have gone to non-detectable po4 and zero nitrates! the tank in appearance looks like polished water yet i dont run carbon! my skimmer is now only running one hour every four hours with my ozone unit on a timer, i have a much better growth rate with my corals, there is less build up of algea on the glass i only use a magfloat once a week to clear very faint dusting of algea."

  9. #9
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    Re: Results of Successful Scrubbers

    .
    This is a big Success Of The Day: "zennzzo" on the MFK site has the first freshwater scrubber success story of any thread, and he did it with a solar powered scrubber! Has has an outdoor inflatable pond that went from this:






    To this...






    ... and it's still improving. He's in Southern California, and here are the pertinent parts of his build:


    10/10: Subscribed for sure. I'm going to try this oustside in the sunlight...I would think there is enough light?

    10/12: I am building one right now with plexi sheet. Started with a 1/8th sheet of clear plexi. 32" x 15" = 480 sq. inches. (good for a 650gal huh?) I sanded the plexi sheet with 40 grit in a cross-hatch pattern. Did the frame with 3/4" PVC pipe and couplings. I cut the slots with a table saw for the water to flow and used zip ties to keep it in place. A 1/2" hose barb for the water inlet on a "T". I'm building the stand so it will set in a small rubbermaid tote. I'll run a submersible pump with prefilter via hose to the 1/2" hose barb, then I will plumb an overflow, 1" gravity fed, a few inches off the bottom of the tote, back to the pond. These are pics of what I have so far...










    10/13: [Realized he needed screen and not plexi] Plastic Needlepoint canvas...piece of cake, WalMart carries that. Does the holes per inch matter?, because the thicker it is, the larger the holes are. [Answer: Not really]

    10/15: [Will be in] direct sunlight aprox 7 hrs. AM sun on one side and PM sun on the other... southern exposure.

    10/16: "sunshine on my scrub-ber, makes me hap-py" **














    After rubbing what green Algae I could scrape up, into the mesh like a caveman, the water is now running full width, and it looks slimey(?) shiney. [Flow is] 400-450 I would have to estimate, possibly more. I used a table saw with a carbide tipped blade for the slot and cross-cuts...Make [the pipe] longer than you need so you have something to hang onto while you are sawing the slot. The cross cuts are 1" apart and the blade height was set at 1/4" for the 3/4" - sch 20 PVC pipe.

    I am chalking the ground to see if there is better exposure time about 80-90 degrees counter clockwise.

    10/22: Woooot! OK we have what looks like the start of something very interesting. Here's the thing... it's down at the bottom where it gets the least amount of direct sunlight...??






    The canvas was seeded with what I could, and then rinsed thoroughly. That's something you said in the thread. There was no visable green on that canvas [when started].

    10/26: 10 days out, no foil, no mirriors, just good ol sunlight. I did move the tub 45 degrees counter clockwise to pick up more direct sun...








    There are 4 medium KOI in there, and it's cycled. Just recently, 2-3 days ago? Algae took off in the pond almost over night.

    10/30: day 15, pure solar power. this is what she looks like now...








    I didn't see anything for a week, and then it started as a little bloom on just one square. After seeing where the growth pattern is, I would have used some 10 grit carbide paper on the plastic...the rougher the surface the easier the initial the spores can attach. The top where the plastic canvas goes into the spraybar, got scratched the most from fitting and re-fitting the screen...it has thick green algae on it and it is shaded alot of the time. So in summary, go as rough as possible on the prep...I say. See the high spots of the grid? I wish I would have sanded the crap out of it with bigger grit. I'm still getting good flow across the canvas anyhow.

    11/1: same position 17 days from virgin screen. Seems the last 48 hours has been a bit overcast and the screen looks fuller...anybody else think so?...










    11/4: here ya go, 20 days out. funny thing is it's been overcast and it rained a couple of days...








    11/6: 21 days out, and now it is filling in with dark slimey looking stuff. And here is side view of the frame...












    11/9: 25 days out... The algae [in the pond] is receding. 3 days ago [the pond] was totally covered. Like Magic it is disappearing. And this pond is in direct sunlight too...








    11/10: will see if the algae grows thick now...it is filling in real good. Here are some shots of some super clear water...It has always been decent, but since the algae has been disappearing from in the pond, it is getting noticeably crystal like...the fish, at the same temp seem to be more active as well...












    11/11: the bottom [originally] looked like the dark green you see here, but all the way across, no clean areas at all. You can see the algae is receding in the pattern of the current...








    11/12: 28 days from bare screen; indirect sun for all of the daylight hours, and 4 solid direct sun hours...








    It's a relatively inexpensive project for the results you can produce. If you are anything like me, no matter what others are getting, I had to see for myself, first hand. I have less than 20.00 invested, but I use the Sun and a gravity return. The concept is basic, add your twist to it and see what you come up with...it just might be better than the others.
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  10. #10

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    Re: Results of Successful Scrubbers

    That's a fabulous result for fresh water ATSs.
    I'm seriously considering building one for my nile puffer/oddball tank, always has high nitrates (big (14") puffer = lots of poo!) in the water and it's been running for several years, so nicely matured.
    I just regret taking the overflow weir out of the tank now (used to be a 60"x20"x20" marine tank, but the overflow looked ugly).

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