skimmer vs dsb

Discussion in 'General Discussions and Advice' started by Konrad, 16 Dec 2010.

  1. Konrad

    Konrad

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    Ive got a 300 litre display tank and a 100 litre sump which is housing my ro bubble blaster skimmer xp1000 (exellent skimmer!) and a dsb and the 3rd compartment my return pump. Would it be more effective removing the dsb and replacing it with a ro skimmer? At the moment the dsb does not appear to do much.
     
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  3. leslie hempel

    leslie hempel Moderator MASA Contributor

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    Konrad

    the DSB and the skimmer service 2 different functions,

    the skimmer removed waste before it puts pressure and the DSB removes nitrate by the anerobic bacteria it houses (which only developes and becomes established after a period of 6 months).

    the skimmer is essential in taking pressure off of other filters in removing any waste before it puts strain on them. so the 2 work hand in hand

    now the other factor to consider is:

    is the DSB big enough to service the 300lt capacity? thus actually performing its function. in most cases they rarely are.

    i personally dont use a DSB but i do feel i am losing out on valuable pod production which also happens in this space of the filter.

    i do howerver perform large water changes (as much as 500lt on a 650lt system) to help with nitrate controll
     
  4. Manic

    Manic Moderator

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    I would skip the whole dsb thing, it doesn't seem to work effectively. If you want a space for pods to grow and reproduce I would suggest some form of macro algae in the sump. It works a lot better than a dsb.
     
  5. magman

    magman

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    eish Les, you must still be young, if you want more pocket money you can come do water changes for me.

    Konrad, imo go as big as you can with the skimmer, "I think" the RO BB2000 should be perfect for your size, when I broke down my dsb and redid my sump, measured the size the sump would be, and then the compartments were all built around the size of the skimmer. Your skimmer is the first priority in the sump, don't compromise it for anything else.

    [​IMG]

    first chamber (35%) skimmer,
    second chamber reactors and LR, (30%)
    chambers 3 and 4, small LR and cheato and local macro algea, (15%)
    5th Chamber, return and chiller pump, and LR, (20%)
     
  6. Nemos Janitor

    Nemos Janitor

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    +1 on that

    I go with a refuge and nitrate filter. One can hack one up with a canister filter and a few PVC fittings.

    But before you go hacking up your filter, what is the reason for the change?
     
  7. magman

    magman

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    lol, I am glad somebody else said it, I think they a waste of time, glass and space, I know 5mm in LR you get anearobic bacteria, where as in a DSB it has to be 50mm,
     
  8. leslie hempel

    leslie hempel Moderator MASA Contributor

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    i aminclined to agree.
     
  9. magman

    magman

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    thanks!!!

    I think for a fuge they nice for the worms etc, they more nice to see the goggas etc, but for a fuge to be effective, I think it must be above the DT so that it can be gravity fed with goggas to feed DT.

    I am thinking to put a mangrove outside, and then maybe a basket with sand in and refuge.
     
  10. RiaanP

    RiaanP Moderator

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    IMO, a DSB works. But, it must have a big enough footprint. A little 30 by 30cm DSB simply will not do it. And you need to seed it from another DSB, And reseed it every couple of months. It is the cheapest, simplest filter you can DIY, for any beginner. Yes, Vodka dosing and bio-pellets and whatever other advance techniques might be better. But I for one, will never even advocate any of those applications to anybody other than the most experienced reefers. And they will know more than me, so I will rather keep quite in their presence.

    Problem with DSB is that it takes it time to actually mature enough to be fully effective. Between 3 to 6 months. And the flow over the DSB should be ok, not too fast and not too slow.

    The rule always advocated is between 3 to 5 times your display valume per hour. So that should be easy, take example a 500L tank with rim at 1.6m, then you need a pump that delivers between 1500 and 2500 at 1.6m. But in this rule I do have my own issues. This rule does not take into account the width of the DSB. So a 300mm DSB and 600mm DSB flow rates on same display volumes will be different. I have this problem on my big tank.

    3 imporant questions that matters
    • How old is your DSB?
    • What is your flow rate?
    • How big is your DSB?
     
  11. RiaanP

    RiaanP Moderator

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    ok, just saw your other thread.
    So a month ago you increased your tank tempereature. Half the live you had in the DSB is most likely dead or can not cope with the higher temp. So that is why your DSB seems not to do anything.

    Ever tried a microscope? Only then would you see the live inside the DSB
     
  12. Konrad

    Konrad Thread Starter

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    Must probably get a microscope to discover the live in my dsb lol, im sure when a dsb is working properly it must be very effective, i just get the feeling there may be other, also effective ways in reducing nitrates. I dont think my dsb is that effective at the moment, must probable give it more time. Ive looked at many systems on ultimatereef.net and there are very few systems that make use of a dsb, dsb's seems to go a little out of fasion nowadays, is that because it is very tricky to get a dsb to work properly and effectively for every specific system?
     
  13. RiaanP

    RiaanP Moderator

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    Nothing good happens fast - we as humans are far to impatient. We want results like in yesterday. Were nature does not know time, or care about time. Take for example the time it takes to germinate mangroove seeds and some palm trees species.

    What I'm saying is that we should give the DSB time to mature. Yes it is very boostfull to your image to run some scietifically advance filtration system. Bling factor.

    My DSB is part of my display. sump is open, and I got some interesting stuff in my DSB, small white sand anemones, Brachiopods bi-valves and a nice yellow tube anemone. Plus the copepods and bristle worms.
     
  14. magman

    magman

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    Riaan, I hate DSB's, had mine for about 18 months, it was massive as well, over 1m x45cm, I think there is just so much more you can do with that space. Maybe a DSB has worked for you, but IMO, and I know alot of guys think too, it is a waste of space
     
  15. rakabos

    rakabos

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    Hi

    So if not a DSB, what would you guys use in that space in the sump, a stack of LR ?
     
  16. RiaanP

    RiaanP Moderator

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    A understand Magman.
    my DSB on my big tank is 850 by 600. Also massive.

    I did start this thread 2 months ago,
    What is the correct flow over your DSB? - Marine Aquariums of South Africa
    Yes, my DSB was not ok, in my eyes. And relooking at it, and the flow rate advocated, I think we have to redo the formula used to calculate the flow rate. Your DSB at 450 compared to mine at 600, on same volume system, simply cannot have the same size return pump. Either the 600 will have settlement, or the 450 will have not enough time to do the settlement. Other factors like cheato ball blocking the flow etc, does make an impact.
    I got better result by putting another pump in my return that pumps directly back to my skimmer. A lot more flow over the DSB.

    But, even now after more than 2 years experience in reefing, I still prefer a DSB over other methods like dosing and bio pellets etc. All methods, do have their drawbacks and plus points.
     
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