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Old 10/02/2014, 04:52 AM   #26
DiscusHeckel
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Quote:
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Looking great Bulent! You have PM regarding the PacSun tubes.
Thanks Sahin. I have not received any pm from you so far.


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Old 10/27/2014, 06:49 PM   #27
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I have been experimenting with the new Pacific Sun T5 tubes for the past two months. I replaced my existing ATI tubes with their Pacific Sun equivalents (i.e. PS Crystal Blue instead of ATI Blue + and PS Spectra + instead of ATI Coral +). My experiment ended last Saturday after I decided to go back to ATI tubes. I will create a thread soon in "Lighting, Filtration & Other Equipment" to share my experience with the rest of you.

I also upgraded my light unit to 8 X 39W ATI Powermodule.The new light unit arrived last Friday. I sold my old Sunpower last Saturday before unpacking the new light unit. I felt quite a lot of unease about this in case the unit did not work. Fortunately, my fears were unfounded. The fan speed is set at 9V. The unit is not any noisier than before despite having two extra fans, which I am pleasantly surprised about. I installed 5 X ATI Blue + and 3 X ATI Coral +. The previous combination (3 X ATI Blue + and 3 X ATI Coral +) proved to be really successful in encouraging rampant growth and producing excellent fluorescent and reflective coloration of corals. Additional two blue + tubes are expected to mirror the TMC's royal blue leds I used to use. Here is the new tube layout:

front

ATI Blue +
ATI Blue +
ATI Coral +
ATI Blue +
ATI Coral +
ATI Blue +
ATI Coral +
ATI Blue +

back

The photo period is as follows: dawn to dusk- 12 hours and full photo period- 8 hours

I hanged the unit 5" over the water surface to ensure good light distribution. After installing new T5b tubes, I normally wait for at least 100 hours before taking PAR reading new T5 tubes. Since some of my corals have started to exhibit symptoms associated with over exposure to light, I have decided to take some measurements earlier than planned. As soon as I have put the Apogee sensor into the tank water, I have nearly dropped my light meter on the floor with excitement and astonishment because I have 350 read mmol on the sand bed (nearer the front glass) Whereas the same spot received around 200 mmol before. Another example is that my Montipora setosa flourished under 255 mmol PAR before, whereas it is now receiving 440 mmol I feel that I have no option but to raise the unit until stress symptoms exhibited by some corals ease.

Here is a FTS I took yesterday. The rock structure is deliberately loose and minimal, but by no means is final. My wife does not like it. However, she likes the idea of giving fish free swimming space, which was my objective in the first place. I deliberately keep the coral numbers low because I want them to grow as much as possible without territorial disputes. So, my view is a long term one and is based on patience. Having said that some rocks are still empty and require a few acropora frags on them. I could not place acroporids on them before due to lack of light intensity.

FTS (26/Oct/2014) by M Bülent Özcan, on Flickr

Montipora setosa in the picture above is situated 20" below the light unit and receives (as I already wrote) 440 mmol (nearer the front glass). The pink Stylophora pistillata is situated 18" below the light unit and receives 550 mmol (nearer the front glass). Yippee ....


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Old 10/28/2014, 04:42 AM   #28
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Looking great Bulent. 5inches above water is too low for ATI units with ATI tubes...this combo give the most PAR IMO. I've always had my units about 8-10inches.

If you lived closer to me, I'd have taken a frag of the Setosa off you and gave you frags of my Red Planet and Blue Tort for safekeeping.

If you are ever coming down to London, let me know.

Do you still have Claytons Acropora Turaki? If so, what colour is it in your tank? I grew mine to a large colony and lost most of it. Now have a small frag left.


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Old 10/28/2014, 05:36 AM   #29
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Looking great Bulent. 5inches above water is too low for ATI units with ATI tubes...this combo give the most PAR IMO. I've always had my units about 8-10inches.

If you lived closer to me, I'd have taken a frag of the Setosa off you and gave you frags of my Red Planet and Blue Tort for safekeeping.

If you are ever coming down to London, let me know.

Do you still have Claytons Acropora Turaki? If so, what colour is it in your tank? I grew mine to a large colony and lost most of it. Now have a small frag left.
Thanks for your compliment Sahin.

Perhaps I am comparing oranges to apples, but when I had the ATI Sunpower unit (6 X 39W), I hanged it at about 5.5" above the water surface to begin with when I installed new ATI tubes and lowered it gradually down to 3.5" as the tubes got older to maintain consistent PAR and intensity (it took about ten months to get down to the lowest level though). And yet the intensity and PAR I got at the time were nowhere near to what I am getting with the Powermodule. When I added two extra tubes, I expected some PAR increase, but only in the front and the back part of the tank, but not in the middle. I am absolutely astonished about the difference. Hence, I can't imagine what PAR would be like if I had bought the hybrid Powermodule

Regarding the frag exchange, I was in London three times last summer within a space of three weeks, but did not have time to visit you. I am interested in your offer and will make a special coach trip (I can't afford trains anymore!) for this purpose in one weekend when there is a special exhibition in one of the art galleries, so that I can kill two birds...

I do not keep Clayton's Acropora turaki at the moment, but I used to keep it in my previous tank. It looked grey-green/blue depending on the light intensity and spectrum. I have recently purchased a frag from him, which resembles A. turaki. However, its colouration is grey/blue and nowhere as blue as Clayton's A.turaki. I am hoping that given time it will look bluer.




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Old 10/28/2014, 06:46 AM   #30
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With respect to the increase of the PAR, I believe it is due to a few of reasons:

1. Increased number of tubes.
2. The curve on the Sunpower reflectors isnt as sharpe as the curve on the PM reflectors, hence the more acute angle of curve on the PM reflectors would focus the light a bit more...I saw an image of the light spread from both fixture's reflector compared by a hobbyist on a Chinese website and the reflectors on the PM focus's light more than the slightly flatter angled curve on the Sunpower reflectors.
3. Improved cooling: with the extra fans on the PM perhaps the tubes are being cooled very close to 35'C and thereby producing max PAR?
4. Perhaps there are better ballasts being used on the PM? This is purely a guess though.

With regards to the swap of frags. I would love to get a frag of the Setosa...let me know in advance of you coming down to London, if I obtain a frag of the Setosa before you come down, then you can bring something else that takes my fancy. Will defintely give you frags of the Red Planet and Blue Tort. -I see sharing of nice SPS corals as insurance.

I gave a frag of my Red Planet to Paul at ACC and it is growing very nicely in his tank.


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Old 11/01/2014, 11:09 AM   #31
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Some close-up iPhone photos I took today:

Montipora setosa


Acropora aspera


Seriatopora pistillata


Acropora gomezi



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Old 12/08/2014, 12:36 AM   #32
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Very nice tank Discus. I see you're going all sps now, why the change?


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Old 12/08/2014, 06:47 AM   #33
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Very nice tank Discus. I see you're going all sps now, why the change?
Thanks.

Keeping healthy and nicely coloured sps corals have always been my main objective since I bought my first Montipora digitata frag for my nano tank six years ago. Any other type of coral is just distraction for me because I have to compromise. If I keep, for example, lps corals, I have to compromise flow and light intensity. For this reason, I sold all my clams and lps corals and went 100% sps last September. Because my tank is shallow, no matter where I put my lps corals, there was too much light.

I have got really good growth at the moment, but the coral colouration can be a lot better. I am working on it though.


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Old 12/08/2014, 03:16 PM   #34
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Wow! How did you get such nice close ups with the iphone? My 6 completely blues out. Also how is the skimmer doing? Quite and sufficient?


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Old 12/08/2014, 04:24 PM   #35
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Wow! How did you get such nice close ups with the iphone? My 6 completely blues out. Also how is the skimmer doing? Quite and sufficient?
Thanks. I agree that pictures taken with iPhone look rather on the blue side. Purples always look blue. I place my iPhone literally on the glass and use the digital zoom (if necessary). I have learned this technique from Mr. Biggles, the Ozzy (Australian) reefer. He uses an iPhone macro lens, whereas I do not use one. Here are a few more pictures I have literally just taken:





My skimmer is really quiet, but requires regular cleaning of its air venturi because it gets clogged with salt crystals. I remove the venturi to thoroughly clean it every three to four weeks. I am happy with the skimmer's performance. I skim quite wet. The amount of skimmate shown in the pictures below is 300 ml, which is one day's job.






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Old 12/14/2014, 06:04 PM   #36
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Latest photos (Acroporas at low tide- 14/12/2014)







The acroporas shown above receive in excess of 600 mmol as they are the nearest to my Powermodule (about 8-9 inches), whereas the orange Montipora receives a little less than that because it is directly beneath a brace bar.

All my sps corals seem to be growing vigorously. RHF recipe dosages are all time high at 234 ml per day for both the alkalinity and calcium parts. In addition, I have recently started to top up alkalinity/calcium with limewater. I am manually dosing about 3.5 lt of saturated limewater to top up the daily evaporation. Alkalinity is steady at 8.45 dKH. I expect this to drop gradually as I have recently started to use Tropic Marine Pro Reef salt. Subject to testing errors in various tests and salinity, salt mix with Tropic Marine Pro salt at 35 ppt produced the following water parameters with Salifert test kits (date: 7th December 2014):

Mg: 1300 ppm
Ca: 425 ppm
KH: 7.15 dKH
K: 400 ppm

Finally, I have started to fluidise GFO (Rowaphos) in a TLF reactor as an important biomark for phosphates (bubble algae) has appeared in the display tank. I am also using Rox 0.8 carbon in a 200 micron bag on a continuous basis in my sump.


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Old 12/14/2014, 06:59 PM   #37
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Wow tank is looking nice. Beautiful SPS


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Old 12/14/2014, 07:23 PM   #38
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Looking awesome Bulent!

How much Rox carbon are you using on this system? And how often are you replacing it?

I have been looking at swapping to Rox but afraid it might strip out too much.


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Old 12/15/2014, 02:43 AM   #39
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Wow tank is looking nice. Beautiful SPS
Thanks

Quote:
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Looking awesome Bulent!

How much Rox carbon are you using on this system? And how often are you replacing it?

I have been looking at swapping to Rox but afraid it might strip out too much.
Thank you Sahin.

I am currently using 75 ml of carbon in a 200 nylon micron filter sock and replace it every three weeks. I will increase this amount to 90 ml this week and will replace it every three weeks. I will also rinse it under RODI every week as per Boomer's advice, which is something I have not done so far.

I know for the fact that in my tank this is a safe amount because it did not trigger any adverse reaction from any of my corals, including clams, when I fluidised it in a TLF reactor in the past. 90 ml is the recommended maximum according to the instructions printed on the packaging for my tank's volume.


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Old 12/15/2014, 03:35 AM   #40
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Beautiful tank
Good job


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Old 12/27/2014, 10:13 AM   #41
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Beautiful tank
Good job
Thanks.

Greetings from snowy Sheffield. I hope you are having a good Christmas if you are celebrating it.

It is update time.

My tank is doing fairly well. Corals are growing, water chemistry is "stable" (KH = 8.00 dKH; Ca = 415 ppm; pH = 7.92-8.16). Coral coloration is still not as optimum I would like. I have plenty of light over the tank with the right spectrum and intensity. I have no complaints on lights anymore. I think that I need to do more work on the water chemistry, especially on reducing organics. I still have some cyano despite having brief spell of success in the past. Clearly certain things are still not in balance. I have started to fluidise Rowa Phos. I am also using Rox 0.8 passively in a 200 micron bag in my sump. I have no sign of micro algae on rocks or glass. However, I have to clean the front glass every day. Cheato growth has slowed down significantly after starting to fluidise Rowa Phos. I am going to experiment with KZ coral snow and KZ zeobac in the new year. I need to break cyano's dominance somehow as reduced organics in the water column does not seem to be working. When I dosed white vinegar last year for a period of one month, the cyano completely disappeared when the dosage amount reached up to 12 ml per day. Clearly encouraging the growth of heterotrophic bacteria broke cyano's dominance at the time. Unfortunately, I had to abandon carbon dosing as all my acroporas started to suffer from STN. I still do not know why this happened. I have no intention to repeat this experiment in case STN reoccurs. I dread it as much as I dread AEFW. Moreover, I have started to dose limewater recently to bind phosphates and heavy metals in the water column. I dose approximately 3 litres every day. I have had to reduce two-part dosing in return. I am dosing limewater manually at present, but have plans to automate it. I was going to purchase a kalk stirrer, but have then decided to dose it from a container using a peristaltic pump, which will be connected to a digital timer. I will stir calcium hydroxide once in a while to ensure that its potency is maintained.

Here are some pictures I took a few hours ago:
















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Old 01/30/2015, 12:09 PM   #42
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Amazing SPS grow!!!

Did you notice a big diference in the corals between the 2 fixtures?


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Old 01/30/2015, 02:23 PM   #43
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Amazing SPS grow!!!

Did you notice a big diference in the corals between the 2 fixtures?
Thank you very much.

I am pretty impressed with the growth rates of my corals if I must be honest. My new ATI powermodule certainly made a big difference because I can put my sps corals literally anywhere in my tank. They simply keep growing.

When I replaced my sunpower module (6 X 39W: 3 C+ and 3 B+) with a powermodule (8 X 39: 5 B+: 3 C+), I thought I was going to get PAR increase at the front and back of my tank, but as it turned out even the middle section started to receive a lot more PAR. At present PAR varies between 250 ± 10% mmol/m2/sec to 675 ± 10% mmol/m2/sec. The powermodule is hung 8" over the water surface. When I had the sunpower I could not raise the unit more than 5" from the water surface.


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Old 01/30/2015, 02:23 PM   #44
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Sweet sps!


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Old 01/31/2015, 09:22 PM   #45
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Very nice tank Bulent, you should be very proud. definitely following this one


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Old 02/01/2015, 04:56 AM   #46
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Sweet sps!
Thank you

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Very nice tank Bulent, you should be very proud. definitely following this one
Thank you Rory. This is not as an exciting thread as most other threads on RC, especially the ones in the sps section. My coral selection and photography skills (and my selection of photography equipment) could have been better, but I take pride in the long term survivability of my corals, some of which have been with me since I started reef keeping over six years ago. Having said that I have been very very lucky so far by not getting any AEFWs on my corals. I fear of these pests so much that I can no longer buy acropora colonies or frags unless they are very tiny (e.g. less than an inch) so that I can inspect them with a magnifying glass before introducing them to my tank. However, my patience and resolve have been tested in the past by pyramidellid snails and montipora eating nudibranches. I have successfully got rid of them. That I am also proud of.

The latest story is my battle against cyanobacteria, which have infested my tank to a moderate degree since I set up this tank nearly three years ago. I have recently started to use some Zeovit products. It appears that I am about to reach a successful conclusion with this battle too (hopefully). This ongoing battle has taught me a lot about water chemistry, bacteria, DOCs and TOCs, and equipment selection. I have been publishing my interim results on a UK forum. Once I am satisfied that the battle is over I will publish an executive summary in this thread.

Thanks for reading.

Bulent

PS. I bet you did not expect this long a reply, did you?


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Old 02/01/2015, 05:10 AM   #47
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Thank you



Thank you Rory. This is not as an exciting thread as most other threads on RC, especially the ones in the sps section. My coral selection and photography skills (and my selection of photography equipment) could have been better, but I take pride in the long term survivability of my corals, some of which have been with me since I started reef keeping over six years ago. Having said that I have been very very lucky so far by not getting any AEFWs on my corals. I fear of these pests so much that I can no longer buy acropora colonies or frags unless they are very tiny (e.g. less than an inch) so that I can inspect them with a magnifying glass before introducing them to my tank. However, my patience and resolve have been tested in the past by pyramidellid snails and montipora eating nudibranches. I have successfully got rid of them. That I am also proud of.

The latest story is my battle against cyanobacteria, which have infested my tank to a moderate degree since I set up this tank nearly three years ago. I have recently started to use some Zeovit products. It appears that I am about to reach a successful conclusion with this battle too (hopefully). This ongoing battle has taught me a lot about water chemistry, bacteria, DOCs and TOCs, and equipment selection. I have been publishing my interim results on a UK forum. Once I am satisfied that the battle is over I will publish an executive summary in this thread.

Thanks for reading.

Bulent

PS. I bet you did not expect this long a reply, did you?
Look forward to your write up. I find your posts/thread interesting Bulent hence why I follow it.


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Old 02/01/2015, 05:19 AM   #48
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Look forward to your write up. I find your posts/thread interesting Bulent hence why I follow it.
Thanks Sahin.


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Old 02/01/2015, 05:30 AM   #49
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Thank you



Thank you Rory. This is not as an exciting thread as most other threads on RC, especially the ones in the sps section. My coral selection and photography skills (and my selection of photography equipment) could have been better, but I take pride in the long term survivability of my corals, some of which have been with me since I started reef keeping over six years ago. Having said that I have been very very lucky so far by not getting any AEFWs on my corals. I fear of these pests so much that I can no longer buy acropora colonies or frags unless they are very tiny (e.g. less than an inch) so that I can inspect them with a magnifying glass before introducing them to my tank. However, my patience and resolve have been tested in the past by pyramidellid snails and montipora eating nudibranches. I have successfully got rid of them. That I am also proud of.

The latest story is my battle against cyanobacteria, which have infested my tank to a moderate degree since I set up this tank nearly three years ago. I have recently started to use some Zeovit products. It appears that I am about to reach a successful conclusion with this battle too (hopefully). This ongoing battle has taught me a lot about water chemistry, bacteria, DOCs and TOCs, and equipment selection. I have been publishing my interim results on a UK forum. Once I am satisfied that the battle is over I will publish an executive summary in this thread.

Thanks for reading.

Bulent

PS. I bet you did not expect this long a reply, did you?
Well your tank is a lot better than mine at the minute and as long as your proud of it, that's all that matters. If that was my tank I'd have a grin from ear to ear One day I'll be there (and at the rate that my tank is improving since its low spot that will be very soon ). I admire your anti-pest routine when looking for pests on incoming frags and I hope that you remain pest free. Haha lol, well I've spent enough time with Biggles, Sahin and Mike that now I expect anything and everything


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Old 03/15/2015, 05:03 AM   #50
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It is update time:

I have made three changes.

First, I have removed cheato completely. Prolonged use of KZ ZEOzym, KZ cyanoclean and KZ Coral snow in my battle against cyanobacteria has taken its toll on my cheato. It has stopped growing. It is the first time since the early days of keeping my nano tank some six years ago that I have started to run a reef tank without macro algae. The impact of its absence is yet to be felt. I have moved all my live rock pieces, which were kept in the skimmer compartment of the sump, to where the cheato was kept. There is some nice sponge growth on some of the pieces.



Second, I have recently started to use a product designed to reduce nitrates and phosphates by actually adding nitrogen, phosphorus and organic carbon, along with some trace elements and potassium. What I use is called Tropic Marin NP Bacto balance. The starting daily dose is 0.25 ml per 100 l. The maximum daily dose is 1 ml peer 100 l. I started very cautiously on 28th February with a daily starting dose of 0.1 ml per 100l. After one week I increased the daily dose to 0.16 ml per 100 l. I am now dosing 0.25 ml per 100 l daily. I will increase the daily dose only fractionally every two weeks from now on.

There is hardly any information and reviews about this product other than what is provided in marketing blurb on Topic Marin's website. I have managed to access to a German forum in which there was a thread on this product. After reading 47-page long threads, I was able to get in-depth analysis of the product by the proprietor, Herr Hans-Werner Balling, along with empirical data about the long term use of this product. Herr Balling emphasises the importance of maintaining a ratio of 10:1 between nitrates and phosphates. He argues that sudden removal of phosphates by GFO or other means causes not only STN/RTN on corals, but also cyanobacteria. I am yet to figure out why this is. My only guess is that unless there is sufficient nitrates in the water column bacterias' ability to consume phosphates in tandem with nitrates diminishes. What is interesting is that Herr Balling argues that so-called "nitrate limitation" cannot happen in reef tanks due to constant feeding of fish (unless there is carbon dosing). I am going to re-read the whole thread once again to assimilate his theories. I have no clue what my measurable phosphates are at present. I am going to order an Elos phosphate test kit soon. If Herr Balling is right and it turns out that nitrate-phosphate ratio in my tank is not 10:1, I may have to intervene by introducing additional nitrogen source to my tank (e.g. sodium nitrates). At present, I hardly get any nitrate readings on Salifert in spite of removing cheato.

Third, I replaced my Bubble Magus Nac 6a skimmer with a Deltec SC 1350 two weeks ago. I was not happy with the BM for a long time. My main gripe was that it did not produce consistent foam head. After reading a thread on RC and getting advice from @Sahin, I removed its bubble plate and cup. It improved but its skimmate production was still not consistent. I then questioned whether or not this skimmer's neck size was too big for the nutrient load of my tank (read this as was it too big for my tank). I sought help from a fellow reefer, @rishma, here on RC. He provided some visible metrics to evaluate the appropriateness of a skimmer:

"Here are my current thoughts on skimmer sizing (assumes well designed skimmers with balanced air/water and neck diameter):

Perfect Sizing: A perfectly sized skimmer is probably not realisitc, but it is a good starting point. This skimmer would skim consistently and remove waste down to the acceptable levels at the same rate waste is introduced to the tank. Little to no adjustment required, set it and forget it. A perfectly sized skimmer would never be idle, but would be close.

Undersized: Skims consistently with little to no adjustment but waste builds up in the tank water and the skimmer cannot keep up.

Slightly oversized: Skims well most of the time but goes idle when waste levels drop below the amount that can form a stable foam head in that neck diameter. Requires adjustments to keep skimming consistently and likley skims wet. With adjustment, it will maintain low waste levels in tank but not as low as the "Perfect Size".

Grossly oversized: May skim when first broken-in if waste levels are high enough, but strips the water quickly to the a waste level that cannot maintain a stable foam head. Very frequent adjustments to keep it skimming and it will skim wet. Remaining waste level in tank can be an unacceptably high in concentration.

So how to get a perfectly sized skimmer? Its probably not possible
"

The BM skimmer definitely exhibited signs of being a "slightly oversized" skimmer. On the other hand, the new Deltec SC 1350 appears to work flawlessly, producing consistent foam head without requiring any adjustments. According to @rishma's definitions, it is either "perfect" or "slightly undersized", but it is definitely not "slightly oversized". Future measurements on nutrients will confirm one way or the other what type of skimmer it is for sure.

I have built a platform to raise it so that it sits in 8" of water depth.



It seems to be skimming quite dry despite the fact that the water outlet is almost closed. As you can see, the foam does not drain but kind of "hangs", which I am not mistaken is an indication of dry skimming. I may attempt to tinker with the water level in the future, so that I will get wetter skimmate, but will leave everything as is.





Finally, here are some photos, which I took last night. Everything is OK except cyanobacteria. Corals are growing, their polyps are extended and their colours are OK. I am fairly happy overall.












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65G SPS Reef- ATI 8 X 39W PM; Tropic Marin [NP-Bacto-Balance; A-, Reef Actif]; GAC
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