By Reefhacks.com: DALUA Australia enters the US market with the new skimmer: Detailed Review.

By Toni Nan Xiong
on May 21, 2019

By Reefhacks.com: DALUA Australia enters the US market with the new skimmer: Detailed Review.


DALUA Australia enters the US market with the new skimmer: Detailed Review.

The question that always makes me concerned is the cleanliness of the water in my reef tank. So in my article today I would really like to answer the question of how it is possible to keep the tank clean from food and other organic waste that can cause the harmful environment for the corals and fish. As you know I’m a big fan of the water changes and you can check my full article on this subject here - Clear Advice – Exploring Reef Tank Water Changes. I replace at least 10% of the water in my reef tanks every week. When only water changes are enough to keep your nutrients in check for low stocked tanks, for larger and heavily stocked aquariums a right filtration system is crucial for the organic waste that is constantly growing in your tank. You might choose using only biological filtration to deal with this problem, but experienced reefers are using a protein skimmer because it has a range of advantages that will be revealed in my article below. For now I will just say that it is worth considering for those who have a saltwater aquarium.

Author:

As a lifelong aquarist, Yuliya has an endless curiosity about our underwater universe. After graduating with a bachelor’s in Environmental Engineering, she transformed her passion into a successful career. While working at the Institute of Environmental Protection in Moscow, her passion for saltwater and reef aquariums only increased. Moving to the United States in 2013, Yuliya embarked on another impactful journey by sharing her unprecedented experience for all aquarium hobbyists ... Read More.

Let’s get down to business, are protein skimmers necessary?

Skimmer cleans the water in the tank by removing organic waste from the water before it has a chance to break down and release nitrogen compounds back into your reef tank, which will affect your nutrients levels. This device makes your aquarium a healthier place for its inhabitants because parasites and other harmful microorganisms prefer to live in a dirty environment. So the main benefit of using a skimmer is that it could reduce the number of diseases among your aquarium creatures by keeping your nutrients levels in check. Click here to earn more about Nutrient Export Method Hack and How To Choose Your Ideal Method.

Secondly, skimmer helps you in a battle with algae that can really destroy all your efforts to keep your reef clean and thriving. And also, as a positive side effect, more light will pass through your aquarium, providing corals growth, and in prospect, corals will have more intense color.

Finally, organic compounds floating in the water can change the pH level. Unstable pH level is one of the factors that make a bad influence on life in your tank.

So what’s the secret, how does the skimmer work to prevent pollution of your reef?

As you know, as an engineer I love technical things, investigating how they work and making some scientific research. I am always amazed by protein skimmers, how effective and easy to use they are. Simply put, protein skimmers clean the water by the attraction of organic molecules to the thousands of air bubbles, which then move to the waste container. It’s easy isn’t it?

The liquid then becomes dark and dirty - it is called skimmate and should be emptied before it has a chance to overflow back into your tank. Can you imagine that all this was in the tank but invisible to eyes? I am sure, every reef aquarium will benefit from a quality protein skimmer. I don’t know a better way to remove organic waste from the tank. For instance, a mechanical filter can trap some visible particles, but if it has not been cleaned, in time all the nutrients will release back into the aquarium. Instead, protein skimmer pulls the waste out the water and you only need to clean the container. If we continue to compare protein skimmer with chemical filters, we will also find some further advantages of the skimmer. These two methods have a similar aim - to keep your reef tank nutrients levels in check. A chemical filter absorbs waste into chemical media, and when it is filled up it should be replaced. If you forget to do it, all pollutants can leach back into the tank.

A protein skimmer, on the contrary, has an endless surface to absorb waste due to the constant generation of air bubbles, all you need to do is to keep an eye on the collection cup. Protein skimmer is crucial for marine aquariums with sensitive reefs and heavily stocked aquariums.

So what’s it all mean?

Protein skimmer prevents your inhabitants from different diseases, stops aggressive growth of algae, cleans the water from visible and invisible toxic compounds and makes the saltwater clear and your corals flourish. OK, I know what you’re thinking ...

What protein skimmer should i get?

There are a lot of quality products in a category of protein skimmers and one of the remarkable models which worth your attention is the Skimmer Model GW-10 by Dalua Australia. For a very long time, I wanted to get in hands this skimmer for a test and finally, my dreams come true.

Dalua Australia is famous for its filtrating and LED lighting systems. At first, I saw this company at one aquarium exhibition, where they presented their products. Sometimes it is important not only to see the logo of the brand but also get to know, who stands behind the product. The team of this company consists of passionate manufacturers, who find the best solutions to make great quality products. They even called their new model of skimmer - Great White. The background story of developing this skimmer was just amazing. Can you imagine that these guys have simply used a standard skimmer model for their research with the hope to improve it and make it more user-friendly? With so much passion, there is no surprise that they succeeded in that. Together with changing technological and design features for the new model, they also put an extra effort to make it upgradable, which means that Co2 scrubbers and lanthanum chloride drips can be added directly into the venturi. If to forget about skimmers for a short while, their overall product range combines great quality with attractive design. I know, that this brand is new in the USA but I believe that soon it would be well-known among reef-lovers. 

Now let’s take a closer look...

Benefits of Skimmer Model GW-10 by Dalua Australia.

Great White Skimmer includes 55W Italian made AC Eden pump, which provides strong skimming power to produce an enormous amount of air bubbles every second. On top of all the technical advantages of this skimmer, the thing that I appreciate a lot is that it is super quite. My test showed only 52 decibels rating which is a very nice result for a skimmer of that size. Moving closer to its capacities, it is able to filtrate up to 500-1,000 liters (up to 260 gallons) of water with an impressive air intake of 400-750lph.

This brand provides post-sale assistance and professional customer support service, ready to answer all your questions even in social media and reef forums like Reef2Reef.com, which also adds proses to this particular brand. Along with I have to mention that the quality makes me believe it will be trustworthy and long-lasting as the main part of the skimmer is made from high-quality acrylic. What also I like about this skimmer is that here is employed in my opinion the most convenient mechanism for water level regulation. To raise the water level you should rotate regulator in the minus direction - it will restrict water from leaving. On contrary screwing regulator in the plus direction will drop the water level. It is very simple and standard mechanism that allows you to make precise water regulation without any difficulties.

What else? After purchase, you get it in separate parts but it is very easy to assemble. You don’t need any hand tools. Every detail is developed that way that it is suitable for screwing by hand. So the setup of this device is pretty easy even for those who have never done it before. But I'd like to see a connector/stand for the pump in the next versions of this skimmer, this would be much easier to align the pump inside the air chamber. At this moment it's just standing on the bottom of the skimmer on rubber feet and you need to make sure that the bubble diffuser plate is aligned well on the center before you start using it.

Naturally, for a passionate reefers not only the technical side of the product matters but also the design. My new GW-10 skimmer is quite similar to other skimmers of the class - it has a conical body, which makes it compact and a good fit for even very tight space. Along with, the cup is large and it is very easy to clean it. However, there is one visual feature of this skimmer that makes it remarkable among other skimmers - it is an uncommon design of bubble diffuser plate. In contrast to other skimmers, it has holes along all perimeter of the plate, while the most common design is to have holes on the top. Overall, the design of the skimmer looks excellent to satisfy enthusiastic reefers.

You can buy this skimmer from our friends at Unique Corals by clicking here.

From Australia with Love, Skimmer Model GW-10 - Final Thoughts.

In closing, I want to summarize that this skimmer is a great choice for an affordable price. It delivers constant cleaning to your aquarium and due to its capacity, it can be adjusted to the tanks of different sizes. It does everything it was bought for. So my first experience with a new brand in the USA market - Dalua Australia was great and I can’t wait to see more products released by them.

Be sure to follow their Facebook Page, and while you’re at it, send us a message with any questions you may have. Although mastering the artform of reefing is a lifelong journey, you aren’t alone! As always,

Happy Reefing! by Yuliya Ivanova for ReefHacks.

ReefHacks.com

The Great White Protein Skimmer Product Review by Afishionado for Reefs.com

By Toni Xlong
on February 14, 2019
"Last year during MACNA, I was hanging out and talking to my friend Sanjay Joshi and like we do at every trade show, I was asking him who he thinks that I should talk to and which product that I should check out. As soon as I said that, he led me to Dalua Australia's booth and introduced me to Christian and Anthony. Fast forward few months, here is what I found out personally about their flagship skimmer, appropriately (in my opinion, it catches the Aussie vibe very well) named Great White Shark skimmer. Check it out." - Afishionado

The Great White is back in stock! GW-5 & GW-10

Joe's thoughts on Dry Rock vs Live Rocks

By Toni Xlong
on September 13, 2018

 

Recently there was a thread on Reef2reef where reefers were debating the merits of each type of rock and more specifically the issue of Dinos.

Joe chimed in and here's his reponse:

"Love all of this people! 
Joe here-

Having done this for 30 years now, I would like to share my quick opinion on the subject of dead vs live rock. 

It is kind of a no-brainer that from a naturalist or purist point of view, the best biological substrate for a reef tank would be the actual rock found on a coral reef. It contains many strains of healthy bacteria that have been proven to be absolutely beneficial to the biological stability of a delicate marine system. Not having these bacteria will increase the chance of nuisance algae and pests from taking hold, especially in the chaotic and unbalanced nature of a new tank. The reality of reefing today means experimenting and trying different substrates since live rock is almost impossible to find, and also quite damaging from an environmental perspective. (This is a whole different topic) After-all, the rock itself, whether live or dead really is inert so as long as the material is not toxic or causing other detrimental issues, we are really limiting our conversation to the effects of biological seeding via live rock vs biological seeding vs alternative methods. 

When all the pros and cons are weighed I think there is a growing argument to choose a live rock alternative such as Marco Rocks. Closer attention will have to be paid to the biological balance of the system and it has always been Marco Rocks stance to go slow, seed with bottled bacteria or with bacteria inoculation from an older, established system, etc. I personally think people start up a tank and lack the patience that it needs to slowly mature. With my own tanks, I use dry Marco rock and leave the lights off for the first month or two. I run all filtration but do not add fish. I feed the tank sparingly and seed it with a few pieces of rock from an older tank. Snails or urchins can be used to keep the minimal algae growth in check. They also kick the detritus up and into the water column where it can travel to the filtration. Not keeping fish in the tank allows the copepod and micro-fauna to absolutely explode. After one month it will look like a copepod tank. They will become the apex animal in the tank! Utilize extra strong flow during this stage and just let the tank become stable. Up the feedings as the algae becomes more and more encrusting and calcified in nature. (Harder to remove from the glass is a great test) 

The rock will become coated with a biological film that will inhibit the growth of unwanted algae/dino. Should you see a dino outbreak, UV sterilization has been seen to be quite effective. (For many common strains). 

At the end of the day it is a personal choice of what substrate to use but if done right, many of the problems mentioned above can be avoided in part or entirely while also feeling great about not having wild rock ripped from the ocean to start your tank."
If you would like to follow this thread, go to this link: https://www.reef2reef.com/threads/a-brand-new-marcorocks-reef-tank-in-socal-250g-tank-using-prime-cuts-and-premium-shelf-rock.450454/

Triton thoughts by Joe

By Toni Xlong
on August 19, 2016

Triton thoughts by Joe

I spend a lot of time talking to reefers about Triton so I figured why not share some thoughts on the theories behind Triton with you all here. Many of these thoughts are my own after working with the wonderful products and method for several years now. 

Triton and nutrients- Regarding the filtration component that is triton- one would setup the system to include a large algae filter, first inline from the output of the overflow box, followed by the skimmer and fluidized reactor section followed last by the section housing the return pump. Nice and simple. 

I would use a very small amount of GFO and keep the po4 levels on the low side while the tank is maturing. Think of your food as phosphate and adjust the amounts you feed to control the level of po4 in the tank while using only a small and consistent amount of gfo to assist in its removal. The use of a quality gfo like Rowa Phos will possibly prevent the introduction of less stable forms of iron and other nasties from contaminating the water chemistry. Using a lot of gfo then feeding heavier to maintain slightly elevated levels of po4 will be tough to balance. Too much power on either side of the equation. Triton aims to keep things simple by frontloading the system with nutrients in the form of food then letting nature process, breakdown and recycle the waste as a form of needed energy. Once we have a well oiled system in place with the right macro algae, bacteria and a stable population of animals in the tank we can ease up on other forms of maintenance like water changes and the use of micron socks until there is arguably no difference if using them or not. The food is eaten by the fish and coral, the extra making its way into the algae filter where it is further broken down by physical forces, bacteria and the algae. Bacteria coats the food particles and detritus and if these make it past the skimmer and into the return pump, then they are blasted back into the display tank to be hopefully fed to the corals they come in contact with. On the backend of this "system" is the small amount of carbon and gfo keeping things from getting too far out of hand should something go awry with the system. These should not be viewed as the reason why a triton tank is successful. The success comes from mature natural processes. 

I think of a new triton tank as a bicycle starting from a dead stop. There is a series of training wheels that get stripped away in layers allowing the system to gain speed as it wobbles less, sheds weight and straightens out. (weight is maintenance practices for this analogy) First thing to go is the micron socks, then the detritus siphoning from the sump and display tank, then the water changes and finally the heavier use of gfo and water testing. Of course nature doesn't always work in predictable ways and there are many variables that affect the outcome of a given system but in theory this is how a triton tank could mature. One can expect to see some cyano, maybe some hair algae in the display, some diatoms, etc as the tank goes through its maturing cycles. Don't be discouraged. There isn't a method out there that has zero hiccups. The idea is to remain calm, believe in the system you have created and offer input to it where needed. 

The goal, and I have seen this on many amazing Triton tanks, is to create a system that achieves success by focusing on stability by way of minimizing variables. This is key. By using only the essential components of the tried and true sps dominated reef tank can one create a system that is largely replicable by the masses. Sure people can and are encouraged to tweak their individual system to squeeze the most horsepower out of it but the method can only be such if it is stripped down to a common denominator of working parts. I think of the algae bed as the huge suspension system of the tank. It is there to absorb most things you can throw at it. If an auto-feeder malfunctions or an unexplained coral die-off happens it is there to assist. It can expand and convert those nutrients into sugars for the corals in real time. If there is a nutrient drought occuring in the tank then the algae growth will slow down and even possibly die off a bit releasing some needed nutrients into the system. It may not be as fast acting as a well running bio pellet reactor but I feel it sure is more forgiving than the latter in the event of a filter mishap. 

Triton and dosing: When people receive their ICP tests and see how certain levels have drifted pretty far out of whack they often contact me to help get things back inline. Without knocking any method or product it is quite logical to think that the less we do in terms of dosing, water exchanging, etc the less potential for drifts in water chemistry from NSW levels. Working hard with them to get things back inline, once they do they of course want to do everything in their power to keep things good (green on the ICP test) 
This is where using something like the Base Elementz comes into play. It is a four part mix of major and minor ions that gets dosed throughout the day (typically by a precision doser like DOS) to replenish those ions lost via the systems filter and animal components. It is formulated to work with a triton system in that certain traces are spiked in the mix knowing that things like carbon, the algae bed and the skimmer will be removing them. Since all four parts are dosed exactly the same amount (enough to maintain the alkalinity at 8dkh), the ionic balance is largely maintained. No other form of regular mineral dosing is needed. Just small corrections should be done once things are stable. Water changes, calcium reactors, kalkwasser dosing, etc are all redundant and will most likely throw off the balance and are strongly not recommended when using the Base Elementz. Since every system is different, each system will start to slowly shift away from ionic balance as the minerals are removed from a given system. This shift away from balance should be less than in a typical reef tank where typically just the calcium and alkalinity are dosed daily and the other minerals dosed when they are felt like or tested for typically with hobby kits. Routine water changes will replenish lost ions as well but you can see how this is a gross way of replacing ions that are lost constantly throughout every day. This is the opposite of riding that wave or chemical stability that is so present on an actual coral reef. At least triton comes close by dosing things all day long. The only thing better would be to exchange water constantly from a known, high quality trusted saltwater source. If you were to exchange enough water constantly to maintain alkalinity then you would also arguably be replenishing most if not all of the other needed ions as well in a most balanced formula. The daily or constant water change cannot be knocked aside from its largely impractical appeal. 

I will be setting up my 1200 gallon reef tank at home in the next few weeks and will share the progress pics here with you all. It will be a super simple Triton setup. Thanks for reading!
Pics below:  
1- The Arid c30 by Pax Bellum working its magic on a 500 gal Triton reef for an LA client.  
2- A screen grab off a Triton UK Facebook page.  Jamie Craggs has successfully spawned these research corals using Triton Base Elementz, supplements and ICP testing to match the natural chemistry of the Singaporean reefs where these colonies were collected.  By matching the Lunar cycles using Radion Lighting he has done something we could only dream about years ago. 
3- The tumbling chaeto ball created by Jake Adams at Unique Corals.  This growing "head" effectively reduced nutrients in our Triton reef while putting smiles on the faces of all as it bounced and tumbled around. 
4- The massive coral colonies living large in the Triton display at Triton headquarters- Dusseldorf Germany.