Welcome to APC. I am fairly new to the forum as well, but have found it very helpful.
There are several basic planted tank guides listed on this forum you might want to read if you haven't already. Located here: http://www.aquaticplantcentral.com/f...ted-aquariums/
They have some good information.
Also, an external blog that I found informative was guitarfish.org. In particular check out: http://www.guitarfish.org/planted-aquarium-guide
This planted aquarium guide provides some basic information. Plus it goes a little further presenting what the author uses in their setup. Included is easy to understand information on nutrient dosing, and CO2 systems. Also, they have a good section on algae.
Could you provide more information on your current configuration? Information such as substrate, filtration, light parameters, water parameters, current plants, and how heavy you planted, like 75% etc? This would make it easier for others to offer advice. Perhaps a picture of your setup?
A lot of people talk about balance, but I personally think a better word is consistency. Maintaining a STABLE environment, i.e. not changing everything all the time goes a long ways towards success. Light is the driving factor in the planted tank, so matching nutrients (CO2 and fertilizers), and filtration to work in harmony with the light you have is key. In other words you dont want a ton of nutrients if you have low light, or vice versa. You want to match the light to the nutrients, to the filtration etc.
In regards to the CO2 systems, I'm sure others can provide better information. However, I have heard very nice things about the systems at http://greenleafaquariums.com/co2-systems.html
They have complete systems, and components to put your own together.
You mention building your own LED systems. Have you proceeded in building a planted tank LED system? If so would you mind providing some information on it here? There are others on this forum working on the same thing. You can find their post in the Lighting section.