Triton and Pax Bellum ARID

CMO

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What have you all done with the refugium chamber in your sump when running the ARID? I have a large refugium space in my sump and wondering if there is anything I can run along side the ARID that would be beneficial. Would a sand bed with MarinePure or live rock to promote pod growth be beneficial or does this conflict with Triton / ARID?
 

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The Triton Core 7 line is sufficient enough off to adequately provide the necessary major and minor elements for a diverse reef tank with the emphasis on SPS. Since each tank is different, individual element testing and spot dosing is always needed to more closely hit the target NSW values. The Base Element version of Core 7 will satisfy the needs of a properly sized refugium or an ARID as well. Since the elements that are contained within the PAX supplements (Iron and Manganese) occur at levels found in seawater that is below/at the LOD for Triton ICP testing, one should experiment with additional dosing to get the growth and nutrient levels they desire for their particular system. With regular use of the Core 7 Base Elements you should feel confident that these two elements will not be limiting to growth. Experimentation with individual dosing is still always recommended to achieve the best results. ICP testing will provide relief that this experimenting is not being overdone.
@joefishUC my new Triton / ARID tank is currently cycling and I will begin dosing Core 7 soon. Do I understand the above correctly that the Core 7 elements would replace the the Nitrate and Moybdenum supplement but that I should still dose the Iron and Manganese pax supplement. Is that accurate or did I misinterpret. Thank you
 

joefishUC

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@joefishUC my new Triton / ARID tank is currently cycling and I will begin dosing Core 7 soon. Do I understand the above correctly that the Core 7 elements would replace the the Nitrate and Moybdenum supplement but that I should still dose the Iron and Manganese pax supplement. Is that accurate or did I misinterpret. Thank you
Hello Chad. There is no one size fits all answer to that question. The core 7 should supply enough trace elements to support the chaeto growing inside the Pax Bellum making additional dosing not entirely necessary. Since Mo, Mn, Fe are all limiting to the growth of algae, experimenting with spot dosing should only encourage the growth of the algae and be worth a shot. It is rather hard to overdose on Mn and Fe since they get used up so quickly in saltwater (as long as typical dosing is what is being done). Mo can go up pretty quickly. Core 7 won't supply any nitrate so if you find that you need to boost No3 levels a bit you can use the Pax solution. Additional Mo being added shouldn't be much of an issue. Again, periodic ICP testing will show if things are in an acceptable range. Good luck!
 
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Algae reactors are great for nutrient export, however as alluded to earlier in this thread, they are not a replacement for all of the roles of the macroalgae refugium used in the Triton Method.

It's important for users and vendors to understand the method.

In a Triton Method tank, the refugium is a central part of the ecosystem. It provides:
- Mechanical filtration
- Biodiversity (pods, worms, nems, molluscs)
- Constant pH buffer
- Nutrient Uptake (NO3, PO4 & certain trace)
- Source of aminos and sugars as older algae breaks down.

Conversely a reactor works differently, with it's primary advantage being export of NO3 and PO4 through fast growth & harvesting. This they do extremely well, but it is not IMHO, a replacement for a refugium in the Triton Method.

Personally if I were running algae reactors, I would use the full triton core 7 solutions as they contain the trace elements required to support macro-algae growth.

I hope this helps
 

joefishUC

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Algae reactors are great for nutrient export, however as alluded to earlier in this thread, they are not a replacement for all of the roles of the macroalgae refugium used in the Triton Method.

It's important for users and vendors to understand the method.

In a Triton Method tank, the refugium is a central part of the ecosystem. It provides:
- Mechanical filtration
- Biodiversity (pods, worms, nems, molluscs)
- Constant pH buffer
- Nutrient Uptake (NO3, PO4 & certain trace)
- Source of aminos and sugars as older algae breaks down.

Conversely a reactor works differently, with it's primary advantage being export of NO3 and PO4 through fast growth & harvesting. This they do extremely well, but it is not IMHO, a replacement for a refugium in the Triton Method.

Personally if I were running algae reactors, I would use the full triton core 7 solutions as they contain the trace elements required to support macro-algae growth.

I hope this helps
Perfectly stated. Its been a long time since I read this thread but yes, the algae reactor is NOT the same as the Triton Method Refugium. Many people have had success running it in place of the refugium but the classic TM relies on a true refugium with multiple species of algae that is typically only occasionally harvested. The refugium offers much more stability to the system over the algae reactor.
 

CMO

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Thank you @joefishUC and @tastyfish. Great info. I'll be running some marine pure blocks in my "refugium" to encourage pod populations. As for the PH buffering, running a reverse light cycle should provide this benefit without a traditional fuge, no?
 

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Thank you @joefishUC and @tastyfish. Great info. I'll be running some marine pure blocks in my "refugium" to encourage pod populations. As for the PH buffering, running a reverse light cycle should provide this benefit without a traditional fuge, no?
The issue is that the point of the reactor is that it grows algae quickly and you harvest regularly. Hence, sometimes it will be full, sometimes it will have very little. It's not a buffer for the system, it's a nutrient export method.

I would not run Marine Pure blocks in a closed (no WC) system, check the Triton Facebook support group for instances of high levels of undesirable elements, especially aluminium found in systems running it without water changes.
 

e34stx

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i cant see the difference! above stated what a fuge can do, but the reactor does the exact same thing. i have pods, filtration, minimal ph swings. all just in a separate unit thats easy to maintain.
 

CMO

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I would not run Marine Pure blocks in a closed (no WC) system, check the Triton Facebook support group for instances of high levels of undesirable elements, especially aluminium found in systems running it without water changes.
Interesting. Figured this stuff functioned just like live rock. So it would be better to replace the Marine Pure for live rock in the refuge??
 
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joefishUC

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If the tank has sufficient live rock in the display tank and is not overfed or grossly overstocked the surface area on the live rock should be adequate to keep the nitrogen cycle in check. Additional surface area should only be considered if it is truly needed down the road or if a very minimal aqua-scape is considered from the start. We have found the ceramic media to leach aluminum and when in a system with minimal to no water changes can reach very high levels.
 
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CMO

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Alight it's coming out, thanks for letting me know! Would it be beneficial to replace the ceramic media with some live rock (or something else?) in the sump to promote pod growth? Or is this again not necessary if I already have enough rock in the DT? I have about 150 pounds of rock in the display of a 165 gallon tanks and 2" sand bed. I have an empty refugium chamber in my sump and would like to do something beneficial with it that would aid in the Triton / Arid system.
 

e34stx

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i have the largest marine pure block you can get in my 350. my al was 25ug/l, i bet most of that came from the triton al99. previous to using 99 the al was 4ug/l.
 

tastyfish

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Alight it's coming out, thanks for letting me know! Would it be beneficial to replace the ceramic media with some live rock (or something else?) in the sump to promote pod growth? Or is this again not necessary if I already have enough rock in the DT? I have about 150 pounds of rock in the display of a 165 gallon tanks and 2" sand bed. I have an empty refugium chamber in my sump and would like to do something beneficial with it that would aid in the Triton / Arid system.
It depends on your system TBH, if you are struggling with nitrite or ammonia and added the marine pure to help with surface area for bacteria to colonise to help with this, then I would be careful removing all at once.

Personally, I would get your refugium going and then look to remove it, monitoring aluminium levels. It's not difficult to remove the Al, rowa or other GFO based PO4 media do a good job of removing it.
 

CMO

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Personally, I would get your refugium going and then look to remove it, monitoring aluminium levels. It's not difficult to remove the Al, rowa or other GFO based PO4 media do a good job of removing it.
There ARID takes the place of a traditional refugium and specifically states not to run a refugium for nutrient export with the ARID. So that's my question, if the ARID is now the refugium, what to do with the refugium space in my sump, if anything. Maybe i'll just make it a frag chamber.

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Aero175

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@Chadmowens how is the arid doing with the triton method? I plan to have the same set up. Are you running the core 7 full method? Or the core other methods? I’m going to be setting up a Red Sea reefer 525, and just won’t have the space for a fuge.
 

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Still too early to tell, but I should know more soon. Starting with dry rock and sand my cycle took about 2 months so I'm just now starting to get a decent stock/bioload in the tank. My experience so far with the Arid is that the algae grew like crazy in the beginning while I was cycling but died off completely towards then end (due to insufficient bioload/nutrients is my guess). My nitrates were high but phosphates where zero which is my best guess as to why the algae died. I have another round of chaeto coming tomorrow so we'll see how it fairs now that I have about 9 fish and a handful of soft corals in the system. I'm using the triton base elements (full triton method); however, one of the Triton reps mentioned in another thread that the other methods supplements might be better suited for a system with a smaller reactor like the arid vs. a "very large" traditional fuge of greater than 10% of the tank volume. I'm going to stick with the full triton additives for now and see how things go since from my understanding the full method contains additional elements such as iron to help the algae grow (which should eliminate the need to dose the Triton iron supplement as well). I imagine ICP tests will show any potential build up of unused elements if the reactor turns out to be too small for the full triton additives (just got my first test back and so far everything looks good). This is going to take a bit of trial and error but I will post my successes and failures on my build thread as I find what works and what doesn't. I've finally got my nitrates down to below 5ppm post cycle so this should be the start of no more water changes where I'll be able to really see how the arid performs.

One piece of advice on your choice for a reactor pump is that you may need a larger pump than you think to get the required flow through the ARID with 1/2" lines. I started with a varios s2 which only gave me about 140 gph on full speed. This is under recommendation of 180-250 gph so I just switched it out for a varios s4 which now gives me 190 gph on full speed. I'm running a Neptune flow meter so I know for sure, but would have never guessed a pump rated for nearly 800 gph would only pump 140 gph. The 1/2" line really reduces flow (I get about 400 gph through my chiller on 3/4" lines with an s2 for reference).
 

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Algae reactors are great for nutrient export, however as alluded to earlier in this thread, they are not a replacement for all of the roles of the macroalgae refugium used in the Triton Method.

It's important for users and vendors to understand the method.

In a Triton Method tank, the refugium is a central part of the ecosystem. It provides:
- Mechanical filtration
- Biodiversity (pods, worms, nems, molluscs)
- Constant pH buffer
- Nutrient Uptake (NO3, PO4 & certain trace)
- Source of aminos and sugars as older algae breaks down.

Conversely a reactor works differently, with it's primary advantage being export of NO3 and PO4 through fast growth & harvesting. This they do extremely well, but it is not IMHO, a replacement for a refugium in the Triton Method.

Personally if I were running algae reactors, I would use the full triton core 7 solutions as they contain the trace elements required to support macro-algae growth.

I hope this helps
Hi not sure this thread is being followed any longer but I have a question in regards to the above-

Doesn't the ARID do several of those things mentioned above-
pH stabilization, Nutrient uptake?

Also if one were to limit harvesting such that there is some die off of the Cheato in the ARID wouldn't that also provide some of the Triton refugium benefit in terms of return of amino's, sugars, etc.?
 

tastyfish

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Hi not sure this thread is being followed any longer but I have a question in regards to the above-

Doesn't the ARID do several of those things mentioned above-
pH stabilization, Nutrient uptake?

Also if one were to limit harvesting such that there is some die off of the Cheato in the ARID wouldn't that also provide some of the Triton refugium benefit in terms of return of amino's, sugars, etc.?
You hit the nail on the head in that harvesting is one of the main issues - if you massively reduce the algae, you are going to have pH swings. A reactor is also not going to be as large and as good a place for pods as a refugium.

The issues are not to do with the Pax Bellum or any other brand specifically, just differences between the methods. Reactors are best suited to nutrient export, they do not replace all the functions of a full refugium, but provide a more compact option with some of the benefits
 

roberthu526

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Still too early to tell, but I should know more soon. Starting with dry rock and sand my cycle took about 2 months so I'm just now starting to get a decent stock/bioload in the tank. My experience so far with the Arid is that the algae grew like crazy in the beginning while I was cycling but died off completely towards then end (due to insufficient bioload/nutrients is my guess). My nitrates were high but phosphates where zero which is my best guess as to why the algae died. I have another round of chaeto coming tomorrow so we'll see how it fairs now that I have about 9 fish and a handful of soft corals in the system. I'm using the triton base elements (full triton method); however, one of the Triton reps mentioned in another thread that the other methods supplements might be better suited for a system with a smaller reactor like the arid vs. a "very large" traditional fuge of greater than 10% of the tank volume. I'm going to stick with the full triton additives for now and see how things go since from my understanding the full method contains additional elements such as iron to help the algae grow (which should eliminate the need to dose the Triton iron supplement as well). I imagine ICP tests will show any potential build up of unused elements if the reactor turns out to be too small for the full triton additives (just got my first test back and so far everything looks good). This is going to take a bit of trial and error but I will post my successes and failures on my build thread as I find what works and what doesn't. I've finally got my nitrates down to below 5ppm post cycle so this should be the start of no more water changes where I'll be able to really see how the arid performs.

One piece of advice on your choice for a reactor pump is that you may need a larger pump than you think to get the required flow through the ARID with 1/2" lines. I started with a varios s2 which only gave me about 140 gph on full speed. This is under recommendation of 180-250 gph so I just switched it out for a varios s4 which now gives me 190 gph on full speed. I'm running a Neptune flow meter so I know for sure, but would have never guessed a pump rated for nearly 800 gph would only pump 140 gph. The 1/2" line really reduces flow (I get about 400 gph through my chiller on 3/4" lines with an s2 for reference).
Hi do you have any updates on this? I am thinking about getting one for my 400G system but want to see some real user reviews before pulling the trigger. Any feedback is much appreciated!
 

CMO

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Hi do you have any updates on this? I am thinking about getting one for my 400G system but want to see some real user reviews before pulling the trigger. Any feedback is much appreciated!
Hi There,

First off I'll say that if you decide to go the reactor route, the ARID is top notch quality, comes with very thorough instructions / FAQs and the company / owner is very responsive via email with any questions.

Having said that, I ended up removing it from my system in place of a traditional fuge for the following reasons:
  • The ARID required quite a bit of regularly weekly maintenance in my experience to keep the cheato trimmed (or clean of melted Chaeto) and clean of excess detritus. I was getting crazy amounts of detritus build up in the reactor very quickly and the only way I could really clean it out was to pull the reactor from my system, drain it completely, rinse the chaeto and then refill it with fresh salt water. Not something I really wanted to do regularly, especially since I don't normally mix new salt water with Triton on a regular basis.
  • For whatever reason, after initial success with growing Chaeto in the reactor I had 4 straight rounds of chaeto melt on me with the reactor. However, immediately upon switching to a traditional fuge with a Kessil H380 my Chaeto took off like crazy with the same water chemistry (more details in my build thread if you're curious). I have no doubt these reactors can grow Chaeto so I don't want to sound too negative on this point, but my experience wasn't great. I will also add that my tank was not mature at this time which could have contributed to it not growing well. But again, same Chaeto in the same water took off in a normal fuge so go figure...
  • Limited pod activity. For whatever reason I couldn't maintain good pod activity with the reactor. Not sure if other experience the same but that was mine.
There are other issues I faced as well such as limited flow but I see you're looking at a unit for a 400 gallon system which would likely not have flow issues given larger plumbing. I found it very difficult to get the required flow on 1/2" lines that the N24 comes with, especially when considering the requirement for a one way no spill valve on the inlet for those of us installing inside a cabinet (can't raise the unit to drain it prior to removal as Pax suggested - nor would I want all that detritus back in my tank even if I could). Pax Bellum should really consider 3/4" lines on these units (with optional no spill valves) so we don't need such large pumps to power them. I would have had to use a Varios S6 or similar on this unit to get the required flow which is ridiculous (Varios S4 barely cut it).
 

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