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Discussion in 'Site Announcements' started by Turbo, Nov 23, 2013.
It's my honor to be the newest inductee on the first multi-banning day.
Well Deserved Jez. As a prize you will receive F-All
Someone else is apparently gunning for a ban.
Yep, I'm now banned.
That's what you get for being a friend of the competitor. What really needed explaining is that the SM100 is a 10 cube/day unit and the 3x is, well, 3 cubes/day. So maybe jimrawr1 will find this post and get the answer to his question "Matt, why?"
Opinions are not encouraged on that site. It's a bit lame getting banned for a few words of realism. Oh well, the exclusive scrubber club gains another member
Though the 3x won't actually remove 3 cubes per day.
It is lame. I don't really care except for the fact that there's a lot of people buying his products and many will be disappointed, which reflects badly on algae scrubbers in general.
Not to go too far off track, but I had a discussion with someone that uses several of his products and his consensus on the SURF was that it just wasn't working, which seems to be the case for many - hit or miss. However his experience with the newer HOG scrubbers was markedly different. The older screen-based HOG scrubbers were not that great, but the ones with the quartz growth surface perform well as far as growing algae (whether that means they actually effectively filter is IMO yet to be proven). The downsides are still clogging of the airline and magnets that rust and fall off. But he has followed along with my recommendations for reducing lighting intensity on initial start-up to avoid photosaturation. I started that with the diffuser on the Rev 1 and Rev 2, and then locked in on that concept with the PCB with jumpers on it and no diffusers for Rev 3. The shade-cloth recommendation came way after my Rev 1, in fact, I think it was not even until this year (Rev 1 came out in the summer of 2012)
I guess that makes sense. Air bubbles in the HOG style travel the full length of the screen because they are mounted vertically. Since the SURF scrubbers are mounted horizontally the bubble only touches a few appendages before escaping the water. Also the water flow in the HOG must be far better than the SURF, being pulled from the bottom and exiting through the top.
I think the HOG style scrubbers probably work OK for small tanks, because the turnover rate will be reasonable. Surely it's a case of diminishing returns as the tank gets bigger.
I'll be testing out a submerged scrubber where both the water and the algae screen moves - in the idea of getting lots of agitation on the surface of the screen, just getting the acrylic laser cut. Will be interesting to see how well it works. I think the HOG style and SURF style are essentially submerged scrubbers, though I don't think SM would agree with me.
Just for sake of comparison, I have used LED light from Turbo's Aquatics L4, for DIY SURF and DIY HOG on same tank here with each for a month. I was using 1/4 inch gravel substrate bound with silicone as screens, so this is pretty close to SM screens. Photoperiod was same on all three units.
I did get some small growth, but this was around 10% in comparison to Turbo's Aquatics L4. Better flow and waterfall system is proved to work as advertised.
I think that I am only one who tried those three systems with same lighting, in same tank with same water parameters.
I really took my time to build those units just to be able to say to people my experience, because I was thinking that this couldn't work and I was right.. Without any doubt there is astronomical difference.
I got so much growth with Turbo's Aquatics F4, that I even managed to deplete essential elements or trace elements for algae growth in this tank.
With little bit of tweaking this is easily manageable, but my point is that Turbo's Aquatics waterfall scrubbers can produce so much more algae, that you end up with more filtration power than you will even need. In my case, I must use this unit at 1/16 power for my 100g tank, because of low bioload.
I am not saying "waterfall scrubbers" but instead "Turbo's Aquatics scrubber", because I am sure that balance between LED smart build, good screen concept and adequate flow is the key!
Thanks @Peter for posting that. I think you are probably right, I haven't heard from anyone else that used my LED light fixture to light up a UAS.
I do have an L2 UAS on a 40 breeder. When I made my very first L2, I accidentally forgot to cut the bottom drain hole. About a week later, Bryan came out with the UAS. So I left it without the drain and turned it into a UAS test unit. I documented it pretty well on AS but it got deleted when I got banned. I basically turn the side drain into the primary drain by putting bulkhead in there and an up-turned elbow so the box would stay full, then I use a dedicated pump (Cobalt 900) to supply the water, and an air pump with a slotted piece of hard airline tubing underneath an L2 false bottom with holes drilled in it.
It used the Rev 1 array which was 6 deep reds and 1 royal blue, all at full power. Took forever to get going, and the tank went to hell. The waterfall unit on it now does excellent (also a Rev 2 with a modified LED array). I put the L2 UAS on a 40 Breeder, which has only had 1 clown and a shrimp/goby pair in it, fed about 1/4 cube every other day, for well over a year. It did grow algae very well, eventually. But it took removing nearly all the bioload to get it to really kick into high gear.
Recently, the tank took a dive. I had neglected it and the alk/cal/mag levels got way out of whack, and algae took over in the tank. I just cleaned it last night, I put a Magnum 330 canister filter on it and scraped the glass (algae came off in sheets, like nori) and let it filter it out. I started mixing up 20g of SW in prep for a PWC (the levels were so out of whack, it's the only move). Cleaned all the power heads too and put in a Jebao WP-25 on wavemaker mode. I also had a small HOB with a piece of filter pad and a 100mL bag of Purigen running, and I cleaned those out too and am recharging the Purigen (which got really nasty after only 2 or 3 months). I took a few hours for the filter to start to clear up the water (tank was totally opaque after scraping) so I let it run overnight. Cleaned off the canister this AM and blew off all the rocks - tank opaque again. Then I turned to the scrubber. I had just cleaned it a few days ago and there was hardly any algae growth. The pump intake was pretty jammed up so water flow through the unit was not very much. Note that N=0 and P=0.14 in this tank. But the algae on the rocks and glass was so much, I don't know which was doing the better job. Sand bed was pretty clean though. Lights on the tank are 2 older Kessil LEDs.
So this UAS has never really performed well from a filtration perspective, meaning that it can't grow lots of algae under a high bioload. Under a low bioload (meaning, the unit is vastly oversized) it does quite well, growing as much if not more algae than a waterfall L2 on my 120g, which has many more fish and is fed 4x as much. Something worth noting, the trickle of water through the L2 UAS parallels the SURF in a way - low water flow + lots of contact time = super polished output water. Problem is, it doesn't work well in real life, and neither does the SURF. When any low-flow scrubber grows algae in great volume, it is, in my experience, a false flag.
Bubbles themselves are not the driving factor. The whole diagram about the wet-dry-wet action of rising bubbles through a mat of algae being the rationale for bubbles just never really made sense to me. All you have to do is watch one and you can see that the algae (and water) just moves out of the way when the bubble passes. It is the action of the bubble passing that results in a highly localized rapid action of water movement that causes a reduction in the boundary layer near the algae which facilitates nutrient transfer. Only when the growth chamber gets so full of algae than the bubble path is significantly impeded do you get any algae exposed to air. I think that is the rationale behind calling the HOG scrubbers with the strings "2 sided", because the strings encourage growth that blocks the bubble path and the strings are difficult to clean (you don't want to completely clean them anyways), whereas without strings the algae has to grow for a longer period of time before this happens, and then after cleaning it's all gone. Why he even sells scrubbers without strings is beyond me, I guess it just takes that much more time to make them = labor cost and people are looking for the cheap option.
Flow is the driving factor, and I have absolutely zero doubt about this. My L2 UAS has very little bubble action because the slotted hard airline is totally encrusted and beyond the point where it could be cleaned. I originally had poked holes in it with a hot pin, those clogged, I expanded them, those clogged, I cut notches in them with a hacksaw blade, those clogged, now I just leave it be and I get maybe 2 or 3 spots where big bubble blurp out a couple every second maybe, and I get growth everywhere throughout the box - wall to wall, side to side, top to bottom. Bubbles have ZERO direct impact on growth. None. Let me say that more clearly. None. Bubble action is only the driving force behind the primary means, which is water movement.
This also is why larger bubbles work, and smaller bubbles do not. Smaller bubbles, like what is created from a skimmer pump or a wood airstone, do not move anything around, they drift more freely with the flow and move around obstacles (algae). Dissolved gases in the water are taken up by the algae, and passing large bubbles through a water column fast, yes, does induce some level of air infusion into the water, either as the bubbles rise and/or break the surface tension. But most people don't have a problem with dissolved gases in their systems. Perhaps the only factor that the UAS has on it's side is CO2 infusion, which is supposed to help prevent excess Alkalinity uptake by the algae when CO2 is depleted from the water. But I'm not sure I buy into that as well, because that doesn't happen to everyone once you start to factor in other things going on in their system.
I had one tank with a huge red cap in it, about 16" in diameter and 8" deep (scrolled up big time). It sucked down at least 0.75ppm Alk out of the water column daily. When I lost it, the alk uptake dropped to roughly 1/3 of that.
The other fallacy of the UAS is that they cure up faster. This was stated right from the beginning and it became clear that they started fast in freshwater, but were at a crawl in saltwater. This was when the plastic canvas was being used, which was used on the first HOG by the way. Then Bryan came out with the quartz surface and that works well underwater. His explanation was that the plastic canvas was too slick and came with a mold-release wax on the surface that took time to go away. The reality of it is that the waterfall standby roughed-up plastic canvas material was and is the completely wrong material for a submerged scrubber because submerged algae attaches weakly, so you need a much rougher surface for it to anchor to. And he has still yet to admit this apparent fact about submerged algae.
Meanwhile, for some reason, waterfall grown algae anchors extremely well to roughed up plastic canvas. My thought on why is that the waterfall sheet is much more turbulent, and the algae must adapt and attach better. Ironically enough, Bryan made the claim that a UAS screen must be really really rough because the bubbles cause such a high level of turbulence that the algae would have a difficult time attaching. He just makes it all up as he goes along, he's managed to nail it with the latest version of the HOG but even a broken clock is right twice a day.
And in keeping on topic with this thread title: don't challenge him on his "Algae Scrubber" forum about the claim he makes about the UAS. That forum started out as the end-all-be-all place to talk about any kind of algae scrubber, but not too long after the UAS came out, it became something else. As soon as I stuck my head out and started calling him out on a few things, I was banned and nearly all of my threads were deleted - especially the ones about my UAS.
Meanwhile, this forum started out as a support forum for my customers, and when I saw what was going on over there, it became apparent that there needed to be a different place for people to go to and be able to openly talk about any algae scrubber. So I made the change to algaescrubbing.com and it's for any discussion about algae scrubbing, anything at all. It's not an anti-UAS or anti-SantaMonica forum but when it walks and quacks like a duck, I'm calling it a ^%$#@^% duck.
For reference here is my thread on here for waterfall vs UAS and you can see how much the UAS grows. The tank still went to hell
Interesting test! Do you have more information about your builds so we can know what kind of apples and oranges you are comparing? How can you be sure that the UAS/HOG scrubbers also had "good screen concept and adequate flow"?
I will try to find photos, but anyway I will make new photos of those units for you to see.
I have made mistake in previous post, and I said UAS and HOG, which is essentially the same. I wanted to say UAS (HOG) and SURF versions. (I will edit this).
I am absolutely sure that I got adequate flow and screen for both. Air pump power is clearly stated, and roughness of screen. My screens may be a bit different, but I would expect up to 50% less algae than, and not just up to 10% as I got.
Wouldn't surprise me if he got banned for that comment, he sure has a point...
Ban stick could be making another appearance.
What was the thread? It's gone
First thread was questioning the rusting of the magnets in the hog scrubbers.
Second thread was asking where that thread had gone, SM must have deleted it.
They are both deleted now.
Huh I thought I saw that thread the other day, or maybe it was on one of the forums he sponsors. SM responded to it even saying they started using plastic coated magnets plus double silicone, etc. He's been questioned before about using magnets and them swelling and rusting. I've seen him reply that the rust it ok as it adds iron to the water or something like that. Which is ridiculous. That's probably what happened...
Yep it had been there for a few days. SM must have decided to delete it. The new thread got deleted not long after Atoll posted it.
Yeah magnets rusting is certainly not a good thing, that's a really dumb thing to say.