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Am1000

Discussion in 'CO2 Enrichment' started by scottward, Jul 9, 2009.

  1. scottward

    scottward Guru Class Expert

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    Hi,

    After thoroughly reading (and re-reading various threads), I am pretty certain that I need a much better method CO2 reaction method, and better distribution method.

    Currently I am feeding my CO2 into the intake of a powerhead and blasting it along the length of the tank. If I crank the bubble rate up incredibly high, I do see definite improvements in the plants, however, I chew through a lot of CO2!

    I was also having a problem with leaves drooping during the first 1-2 hours of lights on. I'm pretty sure that this is because the CO2 response time (i.e. time it takes to get a decent level of CO2 once the solenoid/timer turns the gas on 1 hour before lights on), is not fast enough.

    With regards to the reaction method, I have a bit of 'fish budget', so I'm thinking of purchasing an Aqua Medic 1000 external reactor and an Aqua Medic Ocean Runner pump. I know this isn't cheap but I don't have a great deal of spare time to DIY and don't want to take the risk of having it leak on me!

    Could anybody that has an AM1000 please comment on what they think of the product? Cost aside, is the product good?

    Regarding distribution, I am currently discussing, in another thread, the usage of a spray bar along the substrate coupled with some general circulation powerheads as the best means of distributing the CO2 enriched mix.

    Thoughts?

    My tank is ~100 gallon.

    Thanks in advance for any advice.
    Scott.

    P.S. I had a look at the doco for the AM1000 and it says to use a pump of at least 1000 litres per hour flow. This doesn't really tell me much. For my size tank, what are other users using at the moment? Too slow a flow is probably better than too fast? If the flow is too fast, it might push the bubbles out of the reactor before properly disolving them? But then, if I use the spray bar approach, I need pressure to make sure I even distribution along the length of the tank.

    P.P.S. Help! ;-)
     
  2. Gerryd

    Gerryd Plant Guru Team
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    Hi Scott,

    I hope this will answer the various c02 questions you have out there at the moment....

    Needle wheel:

    A needle wheel pump seems to be a good fit for you. This is easy to hook up and provides extra current/flow as well.

    Get yourself a needle wheel pump around 200-300 gph or so. Or modify the impeller on a powerhead as per threads on this site. The impeller is what helps chop the c02 as it enters the powerhead. Better mixed before it flows out.

    Then just input the c02 right into the needle wheel pump, some models have a venturi built in, and this will provide a nice mist and really chop up the c02. If possible place this flow from the bottom outwards to keep as much of the c02 enriched water in the water longer.

    Octopus OTP Needle Wheel Water Pumps

    Misting disk:

    You can also use a diffusor disk and place underneath a powerhead. the mist rises into the powerhead water stream and is dissolved. A nice method for many.

    Bubble rate:

    You should not be using as much c02 as you are. That indicates a leak or poor distribution method. I was using the same amount as you for a long time. I am just recently at about 10-15 bps or so. Not as much pearling but slower and very nice growth, no algae, clean water, etc.

    Reactor method:

    The am1000 is a decent reactor and works well but you can DIY a nice one for < $20 or so. The pump size to run it is based on the size of the reactor and the inlet/outlet size, basically how much you want to run through it. Use a throttle valve so you can adjust the flow.

    You may then want to merge this flow with the outlet of your main filter for distribution for the tank. A reactor can be in or out of the tank. The needle wheel can be in a sump if you have one, and the disk must be in the tank or sump (I guess).

    Hope this helps.
     
  3. dutchy

    dutchy Plant Guru Team
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    Hi,

    I'm kind of new here on this very helpful site so I think it's my time to help someone too. I'm using the AM1000, which is inline with my Eheim 2071 canister filter. This filter puts out a 1000 liters per hour bare pump capacity. The installed effective amount of flow is 540 liters per hour, and after the installation of the AM1000 it drops to 400 liters per hour, which is in my case 2x the total amount per hour (52 gal. of water).
    The AM1000 does a good job, has very good dispersion (not much visible bubbles)and has an extra air bleed valve which is very useful.
    1 bps is enough for my heavily planted tank (Ph 6.9) without making the Ph controller switch on and off all the time.

    No powerheads or spray bars in use, just the filter outlet that is adjusted diagonal from the rear to the front.

    Regards,
    HJ.
     
  4. cggorman

    cggorman Prolific Poster

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  5. scottward

    scottward Guru Class Expert

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    Hi Guys,

    Thanks for the detailed replies, much appreciated it. It is good having a bunch of interested people to talk to about this sort of stuff.

    You can't pull the AM1000 apart for cleaning? Really? So the bioballs are permanently in there and cannot be removed? This seems crazy?!?!?

    Does the AM1000 come with hoses or do you have to buy them seperately?

    Is a dedicated external pump, like an AM Ocean Runner fine for this type of application, or would I be better off just using a regular powerhead? If a buy an external pump, like, say, an Ocean Runner (2500lph), does it come with hoses?

    Scott.
     
  6. scottward

    scottward Guru Class Expert

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    Just a little bit worried about what pump to use with the AM1000. I'm worried that too fast and I might blast the bubbles out the bottom.

    Would an Ocean Runner OR 2500 be too fast (650gph). I know the manufacturers over-estimate a bit, and when actually under water etc, it will be less than quoted.

    My tank is 100g.

    Scott.
     
  7. inkslinger

    inkslinger Guru Class Expert

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    You can use up to a 500gph pump , I use a normal Mag 5 or you can use a Mag 5 needle wheel pump for even more co2 mix.
    My tank I have a close loop Mag5 ,AM 1000, 300w Hydro Heater. and I use a Eheim 2028 filter and this is not enough water circulation for my 110g tank.
     
  8. scottward

    scottward Guru Class Expert

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    Thanks for the info. How do you know that 500gph is the max? I have printed out the instructions for the AM1000 (from the Aqua Medic website) and it doesn't say anything about a maximum, just a minimum.

    Scott.
     
  9. inkslinger

    inkslinger Guru Class Expert

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    CO2 Reactor - Closed external CO2 reactor for aquaria up to 500 gal - Aqua Medic

    It say's Max Flow 250 gph ?

    CO2 Reactor 1000 Stats
    Tank Capacity Installed Dimensions
    Width Height Depth
    500 gallons 3.5" 14" 4.5"

    Reaction Chamber Dimensions Max Flow
    Diameter Length Volume
    3.25" 10.5" 0.375 gallons 250 gph

    Hose Connections CO2 Inlet
    Inlet Outlet
    1/2" 1/2" 1/4" OD

    http://www.aqua-medic.com/products/docs/CO2_Reactor_1000.pdf
    I see where you got the min 250gph.
    best thing too do than is just email them and ask witch is right!

    I use a Mag 5 500gph pump
     
  10. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    I use 300-400gph, that's about the most you can get in through it with decent results.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  11. scottward

    scottward Guru Class Expert

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    Thanks guys!

    The Aqua Medic team need to fix up there doco - It should say *Min* Flow is 250gph (which is ~1000 litres per hour which matches up with the handbook).

    So, 300 - 400 gph is about 1100 - 1500 litres per hour. I could still use the Ocean Runner which does 650gph (2500 lph), but I'd have to bleed the line for feeding into the AM1000 at a slower rate. That's cool. I'd rather have some power in reserve than not enough.

    Scott.
     
  12. jonny_ftm

    jonny_ftm Guru Class Expert

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    Hi, scottward

    Sorry but just read your PM

    My AM1000 is running on an Eheim 2028. I see no build up of CO2 at anytime. My tank is in my signature. My bubble count is around 80-100/mn and it is enough (decreased light power and switched to most swords/crypts and rare stems)

    The +
    - hidden out of the tank
    - end of the annoying cleaning routine of those CO2 in-tank diffusers


    The -
    - no easy way to clean it. After a few period, it will release light mulm particles that can deposit on plants on low flowing areas
    - small audible click when bubbles are released if you have a very silent setup
    - 12/16 hoses diameter

    I'm thinking to use plug-in hose fittings for instant removal of this device

    I think a mysting wheel setup is a better choice to avoid cleaning, but too noisy for my taste
     
  13. scottward

    scottward Guru Class Expert

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    jonny_ftm,

    Thanks for getting back to me with the info, appreciate it.

    Tonight I purchased an AM1000 and an Ocean Runner OT 2500 pump.

    Once I get them I will figure out how I am going to run the hoses. I'm thinking I might bleed some off the OT2500 for flow along the front glass and send the rest into the AM1000. I think I will split the return from the AM1000 into 3 streams directed at the back left, back centre, and back right. I'll see how that goes.

    What do you think?

    Scott.
     
  14. jonny_ftm

    jonny_ftm Guru Class Expert

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    Hi,

    I can't say how it will react with a strong pump, but, in the worst case, splitting it will solve the issue

    As of the output, it depends, sometimes, one more strong current is better than 3 slow ones. It really depends. It could be you have to test different setups and find what sweets you. One output will simplify the whole setup and reduce hoses in the tank
     
  15. scottward

    scottward Guru Class Expert

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    I'll play around a bit with the outputs and see what happens.

    By the way, I forgot to ask you why you put "12/16 hoses diameter" as a downside?

    Scott.
     
  16. jonny_ftm

    jonny_ftm Guru Class Expert

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    Because most big canisters are 16/22mm diameter, so you'll need clamps or reducers and it'll cut a bit the filter output when connected to an external canister
     
  17. scottward

    scottward Guru Class Expert

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    I received my AM1000 and Ocean Runner OR2500 pump last week and have finally finished setting it up. I will take some photos and put them on here.

    I ended up putting both the AM1000 and the OR2500 pump underneath my tank in the cabinet. The hardest part was routing the hoses so that they didn't kink.

    I have a tube with an Eheim intake strainer fitted to it in the tank to suck up the water, this tube leads to the intake side of the OR2500 underneath in the cabinet. I ended up pulling the suction cups of the pump and screwing the pump to the timber underneath the cabinet, it was the only place I could put the pump where I could access it easily without hose kinks.

    The outlet side of the pump then leads into the top of the AM1000, and the outlet from the AM1000 at the bottom leads back up to the tank. Here, I connect to a spray bar theat runs the entire length of the tank but rather than having lots of holes in it, it only has 3 holes, 1 hole at each and and 1 hole in the middle with a tap connected to each hole so that I can regulate the flow. I didn't end up having to touch the last 2 taps, I only had to close of the first tap closest to where the incoming water is to get equal flow at each output. This seems to be working quite well, the idea being that the CO2 enriched water is being equally distributed by dividing the tank into thirds and pumping an equal amount of CO2 into each third (I also have a powerhead assisting in the circulation of the water just to be thorough).

    I have started pumping the CO2 into the AM1000 at a fairly slow rate, probably about 5 - 6 bps which is only just countable. I will see how things go at this rate for a week or two.

    I also rigged the bleed valve on the AM1000 back to the Eheim intake strainer to reduce the back pressure on the pump and also to chop up any gas that builds up at the top of the reactor.

    So far so good. My aim is to (obviously) get the CO2 dissolving in the most efficient manner so that I don't have to get my gas bottle refilled all the time and also to have excellent distribution of the CO2 enriched water.

    Fingers crossed. Will put some photos on here when I get time.

    Scott.

    P.S. I have reduced my lighting again and I think I may dose half EI for a while to see how things go.
     
  18. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Give it a week or two, it takes a bit longer for things to really correct themselves after CO2 limitations. Maybe longer. But you should see signs in many species after 1-2 weeks or so.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  19. scottward

    scottward Guru Class Expert

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    Thanks Tom, will do. All I will do over the next 2 weeks is water change and dose fertilisers, usual EI stuff.

    Will 'report' back how things are going.

    Scott.
     
  20. scottward

    scottward Guru Class Expert

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    I notice that there are the odd few smallish size bubbles (i.e. smallish but not mist sized) of CO2 coming out through my spray bar; the rate at which I am injecting CO2 is not overly high so I'm guessing that maybe the flow rate through my AM1000 might be a little fast?

    Is this anything to worry about? The odd few bubbles come out maybe every 2-3 minutes.

    Scott.
     
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