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  Topic Review (Newest First)
06-18-2007 12:53 PM
spypet If you google around the web you will fine that people sell these cheap green plastic chambers from China for $10 to $30 depending on how big a pig the reseller is. they are all pretty much the same, some having one ball, some having 6 balls and twice the length, some having spiral fins, some have a white airstone, some don't, but the key is to get the same plastic top/bottom screw on/off housing with the in/outlet mounted at a tangent, and at least one length of middle housing pipe. The in/outlet tubing will adapt to our 1/2" size which is what most cheap gravel vacuum lift tubes use. If you get one with an airstone, I recommend yanking it out, so you'll have one less item to clean when it inevitably gets clogged over time. with shipping I got my "Up Aquarium Supply" D-402 off ebaY for only $15 just a few Months ago. BTW one "bad" thing about having a high Co2 diffusion rate, is it continuously tries to make your tank water more acidic, so be prepared to keep pH buffering it with baking soda almost daily. Limestone Calcium Carbonate like Texas Holey Rock my help keep the pH above neutral, but it does not look very natural in a planted tank.

here's the whole cheap Chinese line;

this Malaysian is selling the D-421
06-18-2007 06:07 AM
dwstonebraker Spynet said
". I purchased a simple $10 cheap, small 14cm long ball reactor, then took the ball out since the top and bottom twist off, and I got a nice little vortex going off my XP3 outlet."

Where did you purchase this?
06-16-2007 03:57 AM
spypet I'll eventually post more about this in my own photo album thread on the new foot deep breeder tank I'm developing, but I love how this came out so I though I'd share it now shame my photography skills and camera suck. That's a medium size X shaped piece of cheap Fellerstone Malaysian Driftwood, a Hydor LED red light, CaribSea's peace river 1-2mm gravel, and the water is coming from my XP3 water outlet piped using 1/2" tubing and a rounded elbow, under and up after it's gone through my vortex reactor. This gravel geyser has been running for days now, and I have not had to resupply the gravel to that corner at all. It makes for a really great visual effect day and especially at night when the lights are out, and is completely harmless to even the smallest of fish who all seem fascinated by this corner. I could mount the LED buried in the gravel pointing up into the geyser, but I didn't want to waste another $40 just to bring the gravel level of my whole tank up another inch, as this tank will only house shallow root plants, so it does not need more than the two inches already there, only to end up stealing another inch of swimming space from my fish.
the lesson here; do your own thing - don't just copy everyone else's tank
sadly, my pictures barely do this thing justice;

06-14-2007 04:13 PM
tropicalfish Question: How is it too much resistance for the CO2 when people have all these inline CO2 reactors with twists and turns in the pipe to the outlet?
06-14-2007 04:07 PM
spypet a reaction bottle AND spraybar might be too much water resistance for
your Co2 gas input and your canister filter to handle properly.
using the hamster bottle will be fine as long as you regulate the outflow
using the XP3's valve so that not too many bubbles spit out the bottom
06-14-2007 03:27 PM
tropicalfish Do you think it will work well in the same way except attached to a FilStar xP3 output? With the spraybar at the end of the bottle at the bottom? That is what I am testing...

EDIT: My reactor is a small 6 inch long hamster water bottle. The spraybar attaches to the outlet. A hole is drilled at the top on the side for the water input. CO2 will enter from the top of the bottle. Is the bottle too small for diffusion?
06-12-2007 05:45 PM
plantbrain You can easily get this same effect with the old design I used, a nice little tornado of bubbles of various sizes.

This adds more surface to flow area= more efficacy.

That's the whole idea with micro bubbles and disc also, I just recirculate them a bit more and as the gas builds up, the venturi purges the false gas.

Adding a restriction (the cap with a smaller outflow) at the bottom reduces flow and allows a larger single bubbles tornado. The Plant Guild Reactor and several other DIY things add a sponge to save these bubbles.

You get better results by NOT saving these bubbles after the gas starts to build up.

For a rate of dissolution, you cannot merely add gas to a reactor a run for 1 minute.

Time of running and time of day are also important, a sustained rate of dissolution is quite another matter in other words.

The open end to the reactor tube allows a nice gentle flow, no need to have a high point source flow. This also allows only tiny micro bubbles out, just like a glass disc.

Dissolving gas in other words is not the main goal although part of it to some degree, adding CO2 to grow plants well is the goal. By purging the false gas and making the mist, you have better results and these may be measured using a O2 meter to gauge plant growth rates.

Disc work in a similar manner when combined with gentle current.

CO2 gas is cheap, a stable method to mist the plants with CO2 seems to give the best(versus ones that also work) results, both myself and Amano seem to think so.

Tom Barr
06-12-2007 03:42 PM
spypet Thanks for the bump, guys.
24 hours later and it's still going strong as
the course sand cycles back into the center.
my Endler's are really getting a kick out of it.
during the day it looks like a water geyser
and at night it looks like a lava flow vent.
since I'm using my reactor outflow, all I need
was some 1/2" tubing and a plastic elbow.
but the key element is that gravel which is
round, uniform in size, and relatively heavy.
it's called Peace River Sand from CaribSea.
what's interesting is the sand movement
takes ALL the flow energy out of the out
rushing water, so my tank water is dead
still unless I add a separate water mover.
06-12-2007 03:32 PM
crazy loaches Neat-o!
06-12-2007 04:25 AM
NoObLet Well done....
06-11-2007 10:40 PM
spypet Let the Insanity Continue!

Now for the World Premier of:

SpyPet's Gravel Fountain!
with Co2 Diffusion!
<--click here <--night version
06-11-2007 09:41 PM
Joetee I like the vortex design. I use a regular PVC Reactor designed by Rex that I built and works just fine. No noise. No loss of C02. 100 % desolved C02. But I don't know how large a tank this one will be able to handle though.
06-07-2007 01:40 AM
spypet if you want something hi-tech for your nano try one of these spiral diffusion disk glass models sold all over ebaY. personally I hate diffusion disks because they require cleaning, but until you get a bigger tank, something like this is tiny, will look awesome, and still satisfy your vortex shaped fantasies. oh, and don't bother diffusing O2 into a 5gal nano as it really is not necessary at all in a planted tank since the water surface and plant O2 respiration are already providing all the O2 the limited bioload of a 5gal tank could ever need.

06-07-2007 01:28 AM
garuf im not going to lie to you spypet i simply like hitech stuff i can build myself and the vortex ticked all the right boxes *looks ashamed*.
i realy like the concept and ill almost certainly use one if i go bigger im interested to see the final outcome of this thread though vortex reactors have to be one of if not the best way of geting c2 into the system, shame ones over kill for my 5g
06-07-2007 01:20 AM
spypet I honestly don't think a vortex reactor is practical at all for a 5gal tank as the reactor itself along with a powerhead would take up too much valuable growing space. you are better off using a disc or airstone diffuser, feeding your gas into your canister inlet, or using an external inline reactor along your canister outlet. If you insist on a vortex reactor, may I suggest experimenting with small plastic soda bottles until you reach the desired results. Keep in mind people pursue vortex reactors for their high gas volume diffusion potential, which really is not a relevant feature when serving only 5gal of water.
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