New Avast Marine Auto feeder

BroccoliFarmer

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I won one of these in the give away contest and it has been rock solid and I love it. My only REAL complaint about it is that it the assembly instructions were tough to follow. Outside of this minor, one time annoyance...I am over the moon happy!! Its a tank
 

BroccoliFarmer

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Ok, I have my Plank setup with my GHL Profilux 4, and I didn't see it covered in here, so I'm going to do a quick guide. This is assuming you know the basics of using the timer features on the profilux. It's really not hard at all, just setting timer modes for the mixing pump and feeding motors, you can easily integrate a feed pause for your circulation pumps as well using this setup method. For full control you need 2 or 3 channels available on your powerbar, but for basic control you can get away with just a single channel for the feed motor and leave the mixing pump running continually.

You need to set up TWO timers inside the 'Processes' tab.

Timer 1 (or another timer setting of your choice): This controls your mixing pump on the plank, and alternatively can also control your circulation pumps if you want them powered down.

In the 'Switch Mode' tab, set it as a normal timer, and put your description name in there as well.

In the 'Schedule' block, have an appropriate start and end time. You can add multiple timeframes in this timer if you want to feed multiple times a day. I have mine set up at a single time right now. ON at 5:00pm and OFF at 5:15pm.

Timer 2 (or another timer setting of your choice): This controls your "Keg" feeder motor to actually dispense food.

In the "Switch Mode" tab, set it as a "Short" timer. Also add your description name in the switch mode tab. Having it set for "Short" allows you to have the timer on for seconds as opposed to minutes. I have mine coming on at 5:05pm for 30 seconds in this example. This allows time for the gyre to stop, the mixer to start, and fish to recognize the upcoming feeding.

Increasing or decreasing the duration in Timer 2 will regulate the amount of food being dispensed. This is going to be very different for each of us, so I highly recommend you measure a few feeding cycles to make sure the time duration of this motor is correct for your feeding amount.

Like timer 1, in timer 2 you will also potentially set multiple timeframes for multiple feeding events during the day.

Switch Channel: Mixing and Circulation Pumps

Whichever channel you have your plank mixing pump on, set that channel function to "Timer 1", with invert not highlighted. This will make your plank mixing pump turn ON during the times you programmed into "Timer 1".

I have my Gyre pump also set to "Timer 1", but with the invert highlighted, meaning it will turn OFF during the times programmed into "Timer 1".

Switch Channel: Plank Feeding Motor:

The channel with your plank feeding motor gets set to "Timer 2", with invert turned off. This will activate your feeding motor at the time indicated in "Timer 2", for the duration set in that timer.
I just bought an amazon splitter. Those timers are too big for most power bars.

 

ctenophore

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I won one of these in the give away contest and it has been rock solid and I love it. My only REAL complaint about it is that it the assembly instructions were tough to follow. Outside of this minor, one time annoyance...I am over the moon happy!! Its a tank
I'm glad you like it, assembly instructions aside! If you'd be willing to give some feedback on what was confusing, I'd appreciate it very much- I'm working on some assembly manual updates, as well as smart wifi plug control instructions. Just send any recommendations to [email protected]. Thank you!
 

ctenophore

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I've had my Plank for 6 months now. It works perfectly and I love it. Fish are so happy and healthy.

I have noticed that some food gets stuck in the tube chamber. This food is usually larger or lighter food. To keep it from becoming a phosphate and nitrate factory I just pour some tank water in the tube a couple times a week. This flushes the tube and cleans all the parts out well.

LOVE THIS FEEDER! Spend the extra money and get this feeder! Your fish deserve it!
Hi Kevin,

Just curious, do you use the little brush that comes with it? I use mine, so I've been including one with every Plank. I haven't noticed food buildup in mine, but I've been using only Reef Jerky for the past few years. That tends to flush through pretty cleanly. Feel free to send pics of the buildup before you clean it if you think about it- it's always helpful to see what's going on with them "out in the wild". Thanks for the compliments and feedback!
 

BroccoliFarmer

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I'm glad you like it, assembly instructions aside! If you'd be willing to give some feedback on what was confusing, I'd appreciate it very much- I'm working on some assembly manual updates, as well as smart wifi plug control instructions. Just send any recommendations to [email protected]. Thank you!
honestly...the confusing part what how to assemble the lower piece that goes in the water. What is the top..how to get in the 'periscope' piece, how to insert the pump. Do I leave the set pin in or take it out. I kept putting things upside down and trying to put things on the wrong end. a couple of 'etches' to say A is the top, B is the bottom would make this a slam dunk.

Insert periscope Z side up into section A.
 
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BroccoliFarmer

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I'm glad you like it, assembly instructions aside! If you'd be willing to give some feedback on what was confusing, I'd appreciate it very much- I'm working on some assembly manual updates, as well as smart wifi plug control instructions. Just send any recommendations to [email protected]. Thank you!
Instruction video was excellent. Wish I had that when I assembled. Looks like my only complaint with the avast system has been resolved. Kudos!!!
 

ctenophore

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My waterline fluctuates between 1.12-1.5" from the top of the rim. Is the standard mixing tube size still the recommended? Just wanted to check before placing an order.
Hi Sean,
Yes, the standard 6" tube will be fine for this. It's designed for 1-2" below the rim.
 

sector9

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I love my Avast Plank! I have been running mine for about 5 months.

I was wondering if anyone runs their auger pump first to let the food rehydrate in the tube then turn the pump on 5-10 minutes later? I have found that some of the food in the Reef Jerky, and definitely most of the BRS freeze dried mysis, will go straight to the surface of the water. However if I give it some time to rehydrate first then it seems to stay in the water column
 

ESH

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Just got one setup on my tank to replace a 3yr old neptune feeder that broke on me.
Very happy so far. Silent, easy to setup, looks great too!

I'm using a KASA smart outlet to program the timing of it that I picked up off of Amazon for about $60. All of my APEX gear that controls the tank is in the basement fish room, and I didn't want to spend a ton for another APEX outlet that would only manage 2 outlets. Appears this outlet will let you program many on/off times, not sure how many but so far I out in 3, each at 4 minutes. Might go down to less time based on how I see feedings go.

Only question I have is, do I keep the mini pump running 24/7, or only run for a specific about of time, near or post feeding? Not sure what the best approach to this is.

Also, the setup video on the website worked, only challenge I had was figuring out how to take apart from how it was shipped and configuring it to put on the tank, but after reviewing some other customer photos I was able to figure it out. Last, there was a QR code sticker in the box did not work and went to a website that was no longer being hosted. I've an apple iPhone, but don't know if that has anything to do with it.
 

ctenophore

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I love my Avast Plank! I have been running mine for about 5 months.

I was wondering if anyone runs their auger pump first to let the food rehydrate in the tube then turn the pump on 5-10 minutes later? I have found that some of the food in the Reef Jerky, and definitely most of the BRS freeze dried mysis, will go straight to the surface of the water. However if I give it some time to rehydrate first then it seems to stay in the water column
That's worth trying. I've always left the mixing pump on 24/7, but if you get escapee floater mysis, letting them sit like that for a little while first before mixing may work well. Also, you can turn down the pump speed using the little slider. Less water flow may keep them in the chamber longer until they're ready to be neutrally buoyant.
Just got one setup on my tank to replace a 3yr old neptune feeder that broke on me.
Very happy so far. Silent, easy to setup, looks great too!

I'm using a KASA smart outlet to program the timing of it that I picked up off of Amazon for about $60. All of my APEX gear that controls the tank is in the basement fish room, and I didn't want to spend a ton for another APEX outlet that would only manage 2 outlets. Appears this outlet will let you program many on/off times, not sure how many but so far I out in 3, each at 4 minutes. Might go down to less time based on how I see feedings go.

Only question I have is, do I keep the mini pump running 24/7, or only run for a specific about of time, near or post feeding? Not sure what the best approach to this is.

Also, the setup video on the website worked, only challenge I had was figuring out how to take apart from how it was shipped and configuring it to put on the tank, but after reviewing some other customer photos I was able to figure it out. Last, there was a QR code sticker in the box did not work and went to a website that was no longer being hosted. I've an apple iPhone, but don't know if that has anything to do with it.
I haven't used the KASA but if it's a IFTTT capable device, you should be able to get seconds-level resolution with the timing.

I've always kept mine running 24/7, but a lot of people seem to put them on a timer as well. sector9's idea above is good also- dispense food first, wait 15 min, then turn on mixing pump for x amount of time.

Sorry about the QR code- we had a mix up with the software on our end and some of those are now broken. We've since fixed it.
 

BroccoliFarmer

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Just got one setup on my tank to replace a 3yr old neptune feeder that broke on me.
Very happy so far. Silent, easy to setup, looks great too!

I'm using a KASA smart outlet to program the timing of it that I picked up off of Amazon for about $60. All of my APEX gear that controls the tank is in the basement fish room, and I didn't want to spend a ton for another APEX outlet that would only manage 2 outlets. Appears this outlet will let you program many on/off times, not sure how many but so far I out in 3, each at 4 minutes. Might go down to less time based on how I see feedings go.

Only question I have is, do I keep the mini pump running 24/7, or only run for a specific about of time, near or post feeding? Not sure what the best approach to this is.

Also, the setup video on the website worked, only challenge I had was figuring out how to take apart from how it was shipped and configuring it to put on the tank, but after reviewing some other customer photos I was able to figure it out. Last, there was a QR code sticker in the box did not work and went to a website that was no longer being hosted. I've an apple iPhone, but don't know if that has anything to do with it.
I bought a two for one splitter. There is sometimes a small amount of food left over..but it gets washed out the next feeding.


 

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@AVAST Marine Quick question although I plan on getting freeze dried foods can you mix that in with some pellets as well primarily looking to add on Hakari seaweed pellets.

My plank should be arriving this week and looking forward to using it.
 

PedroYoung

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@AVAST Marine Quick question although I plan on getting freeze dried foods can you mix that in with some pellets as well primarily looking to add on Hakari seaweed pellets.

My plank should be arriving this week and looking forward to using it.
I’m using freeze dried mysis shrimp along with new life spectrum marine pellets (1mm) and works great. I layer in the drum about 1 tablespoon at a time
 

ctenophore

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@AVAST Marine Quick question although I plan on getting freeze dried foods can you mix that in with some pellets as well primarily looking to add on Hakari seaweed pellets.

My plank should be arriving this week and looking forward to using it.
Yes, mixing things in like this works well. Upping the veggie content especially when you have a lot of herbivores makes sense.
 

Betex

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Nope as I want all my foods to be sinking . If anything floats , it won’t be eaten in my tank and will go down the drain . However if you k ow the food you want to try , why not just NOT use the feeding tube and just let the feeder drop food in the water ?
Do you end up with some food floating atop? I just got mine this week and got it all setup and have the mixing pump pretty slow so that it doesnt just throw the food in tank and float up but I seem to be having some particles still float and cant get them all to hydrate. I am currently using the avast marine jerky and BRS mysis shrimp.
 

AJsReef

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Finally have some stock in my tank so went ahead and installed my Plank. Impressed with the design for sure!

Decided to put it in my return chamber to avoid having to modify my lid. The food is going to be pushed through my UV housing which isn't ideal but going to try anyway.

My only oversight is the tube isn't long enough. Went ahead an ordered an 8" replacement. In the meantime going to let it dump in the sump and see what happens.

For those with sump mounted planks, any need to a small circulation pump in the return chamber? Or does nothing settle? I've been pondering getting one for awhile so I can dose right into the circulation pump just to mix "optimally"
 

malfist

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Anybody know what the run time for reef jerky is in the plank in mysis cube equivalents? I'm used to feeding only frozen foods to my tank and I have no idea how long to run the plank for. If I want to feed 1 cube equivalent, how long should I run the plank for?

I've tried just running it until the fish stop eating, but my clowns are fat ***** and continually pick the bits out they love from the reef jerky.
 

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