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Old 09-06-2013, 06:39 PM   #1
chrispena33
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CO2 Suggestions


So, I'm trying to piece together everything that I'm going to need for my new 55G. I'm going to be honest and say that the only things I really know about CO2 is that it would really help out my plants flourish and that a 55G is too big for a DIY rig. I was hoping that someone could point me in the direction of a fairly inexpensive, yet effective pressurized system. I would like it to be a complete system if possible. I just don't know enough to have to look for specific parts.

Thanks in advance, guys and gals!
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Old 09-06-2013, 07:09 PM   #2
jfynyson
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First of all a DIY set up (sugar / yeast) is not insufficiently "sized" for a a 55gal. I did it years ago for a low tech set up. The issue with any DIY set up is inconsistent flow of CO2 which makes dissolution more difficult and can lead to algae issues. Perform a few searches on this forum for CO2 set ups for a 55gal, DIY, pressurized, paint ball, fire extinguisher, etc.

Look into the paintball gun CO2 set ups I hear they work really well and are really cheap. If you wish to go pressurized, which I highly recommend then you should not cut yourself short of the regulator as that's key to success.
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Old 09-06-2013, 07:34 PM   #3
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I second jfynyson's comments. Go big or don't go at all with co2. You'll save yourself a bit of headache especially if you're not familiar with it. There are lots of tanks that are nice without co2. The trick is to not have too much light. You should probably still fertilize though. Look through Darkblade's Primer to planted tanks and then check out the low tech section of the forums to see what people have done to implement their "balance".

However, if you still want to do co2 on a budget because it's cool and you feel that you need it to achieve your balance, you can go pretty big even with DIY
ultimate DIY CO2 with benefits… wine byproduct!

And finally, if you can budget for it, build your own Dual Stage Regulator and get yourself a real co2 tank. How to build a co2 regulator [56k!] This is one of those things where if you can cough up the initial investment, it will save you in the long run.
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Old 09-09-2013, 02:30 PM   #4
chrispena33
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Thanks for your help, guys. I was doing a little more research and found this nearly complete kit.

http://www.drsfostersmith.com/produc...35&pcatid=9935

Seems like all I have to get is the tank for this kit.
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Old 09-09-2013, 04:08 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chrispena33 View Post
Thanks for your help, guys. I was doing a little more research and found this nearly complete kit.

http://www.drsfostersmith.com/produc...35&pcatid=9935

Seems like all I have to get is the tank for this kit.
It would behoove you to do a little more research on the Azoo regulator as I recall a lot of folks having issues with them or maybe it was the Milwaukee brand regulators....I know I was about set to order their complete system until I reasearched a little more and began noticing a lot of issues with it. I elected to pay more for a better system when looking back may have been cheaper and just as good to get one from here. Also search this forum for someone who builds them as you'll likely get out even cheaper with a higher quality product ?
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Old 09-09-2013, 04:34 PM   #6
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I think most of the pre built ones have mixed reviews. I've looked into the AquaTek kits on amazon for 90.00, there is a mix of reviews just as there are on here. I'm thinking about going with the AquaTek and a 20lb bottle for my 29 gallon. Seems most have issues with them when they reach the 2 year mark.
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Old 09-09-2013, 11:40 PM   #7
chrispena33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Italionstallion888 View Post
I think most of the pre built ones have mixed reviews. I've looked into the AquaTek kits on amazon for 90.00, there is a mix of reviews just as there are on here. I'm thinking about going with the AquaTek and a 20lb bottle for my 29 gallon. Seems most have issues with them when they reach the 2 year mark.
Which kit are you referring to? I just tried looking it up and just found individual pieces.
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Old 09-10-2013, 12:07 AM   #8
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I guess kits was the incorrect verbage. I was looking at the cool touch and mini versions
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Old 09-10-2013, 12:19 AM   #9
chrispena33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Italionstallion888 View Post
I guess kits was the incorrect verbage. I was looking at the cool touch and mini versions
Ahhh gotcha. Yeah, I would prefer to go with a complete package to start off with just because I don't have a whole lot of knowledge about it yet. Thanks for sharing!
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Old 09-10-2013, 01:03 AM   #10
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From my understanding all you need for the aquatek is a diffuser and bottle. Co2 line if you don't have it. I would rather learn on something cheap before I break something expensive. Lol
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Old 09-10-2013, 06:10 AM   #11
chrispena33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Italionstallion888 View Post
From my understanding all you need for the aquatek is a diffuser and bottle. Co2 line if you don't have it. I would rather learn on something cheap before I break something expensive. Lol
Haha I hear ya.
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Old 09-10-2013, 08:14 AM   #12
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But the whole point is that the 'expensive' stuff (ie quality parts) does not break. (At least not under reasonable conditions in this hobby). A quality set-up will last a lifetime. The other stuff is a different matter: buy cheap, buy twice.

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Old 09-10-2013, 04:02 PM   #13
chrispena33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OVT View Post
But the whole point is that the 'expensive' stuff (ie quality parts) does not break. (At least not under reasonable conditions in this hobby). A quality set-up will last a lifetime. The other stuff is a different matter: buy cheap, buy twice.

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That makes sense, OVT. The thing is that this is my first go around with Co2, so if for whatever reason it doesn't work out for me or I don't really like it I don't want to have invested half my life savings into it. Now, if its working out for me and I do really like it then I wouldn't have a problem trading up for something that's a higher quality and more long term.

Here's to hoping it works out!

Now if I could only find the right lights....
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Old 09-10-2013, 05:53 PM   #14
Lornek8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chrispena33 View Post
That makes sense, OVT. The thing is that this is my first go around with Co2, so if for whatever reason it doesn't work out for me or I don't really like it I don't want to have invested half my life savings into it. Now, if its working out for me and I do really like it then I wouldn't have a problem trading up for something that's a higher quality and more long term.

Here's to hoping it works out!

Now if I could only find the right lights....

Part of it though is that if you buy inferior and you have problems that can do a lot to dissuade you into getting further along in the hobby or progressing with CO2. It could also be more expensive in the long-run by causing you to spend more money in other aspects of the tank to make-up for or recover from short-comings of the CO2 system. Finally, the resale value for the quality components is much better. There are a lot of "cheap" used CO2 systems around and that's for a reason, people have progressed beyond them and wish to go with something better/easier. Should you buy a quality CO2 system and decide you don't like it, your resale value and market will most likely be better.
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Old 09-10-2013, 06:36 PM   #15
Italionstallion888
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For someone like me that doesn't have the time to dedicate to building one, nor has the funds to buy an expensive set up, the AquaTek seems like the best option. Complete low budget co2 for less than 130.00 w/bottle. Every other aspect of the tank has been covered except for the co2. I don't mind my hagen kit, but I'm tired of my crypts melting every time I have to make a mixture. I would rather go cheaper on my smaller tank, learn and potentially gas a smaller tank than my 50 I've put a lot of money into. I understand the buy cheap get cheap. I'm an old school mechanic. Buying cheap parts usually means you are replacing them in 2 years vs 5 with a quality part. Sometimes it's just the better option.
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