DIY External Heater (56k!) - Page 7 - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #91 of 108 (permalink) Old 01-09-2009, 12:14 AM
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Just wanted to update on how my inline combination heater/co2 reactor has been long term.
I built mine long before the beginning of this thread. Its been running great with no problems for 3 about years now. I installed a larger heater and addied a 1/8" bleed line at the top when I had the tank down a week last year for a rescaping.
Mine is made from 4" PVC pipe for the main body. (left over scrap from another project)Cleanout for a top and a cap for the bottom. The heater gland nut, the inlet, outlet and CO2 inlet were just drilled, tapped (threaded) and glued into the sides or top of the fittings.

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post #92 of 108 (permalink) Old 02-24-2009, 04:52 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crazy loaches View Post
I successfully made mine with that free Heyco sample but it has little effect for what I wanted. I made an inline heater for cold water line for my autowater changer.
I want to do the same. Can't use hot from the tap because it goes through a water softener. From the spigot it is about 63F. I figure with a 3x400w heater, I can heat 30 gallons of water about 10F over 45 minutes (30g is how much I need when doing changes in all my tanks).

Quote:
Originally Posted by crazy loaches View Post
Even though my flow rate is slow, and I used larger 2" pipe, it still makes only a minor difference (with a 400W heater mind you).
I don't think the pipe diameter matters. Keep in mind that the heat has to go somewhere. As long as the heater stays on, and you don't have stagnant area that result in heat escaping through the PVC, the heat will transfer to the water. In fact a smaller diameter probably would be better so you always get a good flow of water over the heater. With a big pipe, water could be somewhat stagnant and cause the heater to turn off.

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Originally Posted by crazy loaches View Post
Even though my flow rate is slow, and I The only thing that would concern me for regular aquarium use, at least with the Theo heater (not sure about others) is the minimum water level for the heater seems to be right at the end of the glass. So inside one of the cordgrip fittings the actual water line is almost 2" away from minimum which might effects its temperature control. Apparently this isnt a problem for most, or someone would have mentioned it.
Good question. I have 7 heaters in various tanks and storage. All have the min water line just below the temp control. Maybe this is a problem and is why yours wasn't working well.

It would great if anyone who has this working would mention which heater they are using. I want to use the Haydor Theo, since using 3 400w Theos is the cheapest way for me to get 1200w. I see some are using Jagers, but a 250w Jager is as much as a 400w Theo, and I'd need to deal with 5 heaters instead of 3.
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post #93 of 108 (permalink) Old 06-08-2009, 07:44 PM
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Has anyone tried this design with the new updated jager heater that is fully submersible?
I ordered a heater to make this, when I got it in and opened it up i noticed that they moved the minimum water level line up to the head. Just checking to see if anyone else has ran across this. Thanks
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post #94 of 108 (permalink) Old 06-10-2009, 11:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SpeedEuphoria View Post
Just an Update, Heyco sent me 2 free cordgrips today as free samples. I asked for 4 but they only gave me 2(all I needed anyway).

I update when I try the Stealth heater in it and see how it seals and post a pic of the final project
I used my 200w stealth. It sealed beautifully, and looked snazzy, as the top rubber is removable, you can slide the glass almost all the way in. 30 minutes later, it was shattered. I dont know what happened.

I used mine upsidedown, to avoid a co2 bubble from making problems. I have not gotten a response anywhere to find if this was the problem.


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post #95 of 108 (permalink) Old 06-11-2009, 02:06 AM
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Any pictures of design? A list of pieces used?
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post #96 of 108 (permalink) Old 10-01-2009, 02:42 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zavikan View Post
I used my 200w stealth. It sealed beautifully, and looked snazzy, as the top rubber is removable, you can slide the glass almost all the way in. 30 minutes later, it was shattered. I dont know what happened.

I used mine upsidedown, to avoid a co2 bubble from making problems. I have not gotten a response anywhere to find if this was the problem.
A stealth heater is plastic, no glass on it at all.

Btw, has anyone tried this with a stealth heater? My only concern is that the stealth heaters have those four groves along the body. Would that prevent it from getting a perfect seal?

Thanks,
Harry
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post #97 of 108 (permalink) Old 10-17-2009, 01:51 PM
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I'm looking to do the same but over here in the UK.

It's with a hydor 25w heater as I don't want it to be in my 12" x 10" x 8" tank.

I'm having trouble finding the end connectors, such as the cord grips? They might be called something else over there.

In addition, how do the filter hoses get connected to this?

I have a 40mm PVC tube with the tee and the bend section, it's just the rest!

Any help is appreciated.
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post #98 of 108 (permalink) Old 01-18-2010, 07:41 PM
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What are your thoughts on my setup? I am setting up a 58 gallon tank and want/need the heater to be external. I am using a Fulval FX5 and have it T-off into two return lines, one of which passes over a 200 watt jager heater. I have not glued everything together yet but want to do so tomorrow. My fear is that air is going to get traped in the top of the heater section and not provide enough water contact with the heater.


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post #99 of 108 (permalink) Old 01-18-2010, 07:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gotfrogs View Post
What are your thoughts on my setup? I am setting up a 58 gallon tank and want/need the heater to be external. I am using a Fulval FX5 and have it T-off into two return lines, one of which passes over a 200 watt jager heater. I have not glued everything together yet but want to do so tomorrow. My fear is that air is going to get traped in the top of the heater section and not provide enough water contact with the heater.
I can understand your concern. The more flow capacity you add to your return line(s), the slower your flow will be. You still get the same volume of water flow (maybe a bit more), but at a slower speed, and this slower speed may not be enough to force air bubbles down the return tube and into the tank. However, I have no idea if it will be a problem with your setup.

BTW, where did you get the piece that seals your jager heater into the pvc T. I've seen them mentioned in old threads before, but could never find a link to merchant that would actually work.
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post #100 of 108 (permalink) Old 01-18-2010, 08:38 PM
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One problem when you divide the flow into two parallel paths is that there is no guarantee that each path will get anywhere near 50% of the flow. The path with the heater might be restricted enough to get only 10% of the flow, for example. You almost have to use flow control valves in each line to equalize the flows.

You can add a bleed valve at the top of the heater path, and use that to bleed off any air bubble. Then occasionally you can bleed it again just to be sure no air is collecting.

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post #101 of 108 (permalink) Old 01-18-2010, 10:01 PM
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I ordered it from mouser PN 836-8438. They are out of the black one but have the gray (836-8438) in stock. I am not really concerned with having an even flow distribution. I am using a really big filter/pump so even if I only get 10% of the flow directed over the heater I don't think this will be a problem. I am concerned with air building up in the heater chamber. Adding a bleed valve may be the best option.
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post #102 of 108 (permalink) Old 01-19-2010, 10:41 PM
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I went ahead and added a bleed valve up near the top of the heating chamber.

Hopefully my heater and intake strainer get delivered today and I can start gluing everything together.
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post #103 of 108 (permalink) Old 01-21-2010, 01:07 AM
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I finished all of the plumbing and sliliconed the background in place. Hopefully I will have the tank full of water with no leaks this weekend!

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post #104 of 108 (permalink) Old 01-28-2010, 10:59 PM
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It all seems to be working. The tank has been running for a week now and I have not had any problems.
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post #105 of 108 (permalink) Old 01-31-2010, 05:15 AM
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heyco cord grips are backordered

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