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Thread: brand new to site and scrubbers

  1. #1

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    brand new to site and scrubbers

    I have a 100g reef set up, I built a ATS from the help of this site. Its 10" across and 13" down being fed off my return with a strong flow(full wall of water at the bottom) just increased the flow from a slower waterfall effect. Have a 75watt flood light in a standard reflector pointed directly at it only on 1 side. Space and outlets dont permit 2 sided. Should I keep this size if feeding about 4 cubes daily? The first week I got the dark dark green brown black algae. Rinsed in fresh water and now at end of 2nd week alot brighter green but still darkish. This OK? But I have noticed more turf algae growing in display but my nitrates are almost half of what they were(25-30ppm) to now about 10-15ppm and phosphates about 0. Is the light bright enough and if flow is too strong will spore go back into tank and cause more growth? Sorry this all over the place but never have posted in my over 15 years in the fish hobby. Love the idea and how much my nitrates have dropped just a bit confused if I am doing this right. ALSo sorry if this in the wrong place. Didnt see general question forum? Thanks M

  2. #2
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    Welcome.

    First is to check on the wattage; sounds like it's a 75 equivalent watt, which is about 13 real watts. If so, 13 watts is good for 13 square inches, not 130 square inches, which would explain the dark growth.

    Any growth will reduce nutrients, as you have seen, but it will get tougher as the nutrients get lower.

  3. #3

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    Hey SM! Thanks for getting back to me. So what size light bulb do I need then? and do I need that large of a screen with all the new resizing info that you are talking about. Are you saying the lower the nutrients get it will be harder to grow the algae on the screen or inside the display? Isnt the goal to grow large amount of thick dense algae to keep lowering the nutrients? And if we are growing this type of algae wouldnt that really mean that there are still alot of nutrients in the water or am i just getting myself confused?

    bottom line, what type of light bulb exactly, i have a standard home depot clamp light with reflector with a screw in socket. and how far away from screen?
    -is too much flow just a s bad as not enough?
    -is that screen size(10"x13") ok if feeding 4 cubes daily?
    -should i rinse now before end of week 2 if its not super bright green more like half and half?

    Thanks again, your site is super helpful and informative

  4. #4
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    The goal is to have low nutrients, no matter what type of growth you have. Usually, however, the thick bright green growth filters better than dark thin slime. But all scrubber will vary from start to finish. And it will grow more when you feed more, because of the extra ammonia put into the water by the animals.

    Area for 4 cubes vertical would need 4 x 12 = 48 square inches, so horizontal would be 4 X 48 = 192 square inches.

    Light for 4 cubes vertical would need at least 4 X 12 = 48 total real (not equivalent) watts, so horizontal would be 1.5 X 48 = 72 real watts. But this could be doubled, too.

    So technically your screen is small, and your lighting is way too small. But since it's already built, just get stronger lighting and see how it goes. An LED grow bulb light these would be good:

    http://algaescrubber.net/forums/show...-led-grow-bulb

  5. #5

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    Thanks again so much SM!!

    That cleared a few things up!! But you say my screen is small when its 10" by 13" so 130 square inches. Isnt that much bigger than what you suggested or am I not calculating the inches properly?

    Should I get a bigger reflector as well or just bigger wattage???

    Lastly, what should I be thinking about the new growth of turf algae within my display?? Its seems to be spreading quicker than without ATS? Will it die off soon/halt growth??

    Thanks again for your unparrelled guidance!! Cheers mateo

  6. #6
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    I calculated 192 square inches. Yours is 130.

    I have not seen your reflector or bulb, but is should put all the light onto the screen.

    The new nuisance algae in your display is probably phosphate coming out of the rock, which is good.

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by SantaMonica View Post
    I calculated 192 square inches. Yours is 130.

    I have not seen your reflector or bulb, but is should put all the light onto the screen.

    The new nuisance algae in your display is probably phosphate coming out of the rock, which is good.
    Isn't the setup being discussed here a one sided waterfall scrubber?

    The calculated 192 is for a horizontal??

  8. #8
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    Ah yes you are right. So the recommended size would be 48 square inches, with at least 48 real (not equivalent) watts.

  9. #9

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    Thank you again, I really started to think I was going crazy. So my screen is too big I will reduce and add more real wattage lighting. Will keep you updated. Last question for now.... I should always clean the screen if its the darker green algae even if its not been the full week correct?? thanks again M

  10. #10
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    Well a week is good. But yes when the growth is black then you want to get it all off.

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