CO2 regulator choice: Paintball or CGA320?
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Old 12-28-2012, 05:31 PM   #1
mobruler78
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CO2 regulator choice: Paintball or CGA320?


So I'm starting my journey into pressurized CO2 and want to make sure I get it right the first time. Space and $$ are a concern and I will be using this on my nano 5.5g tank with a paintball tank.

I'm looking at getting an AquaTek regulator (since these are available on Amazon and I have a ton of giftcards...and they look ideal for a starter) and I was wondering if I should get the Paintball regulator ($90) or a standard CGA320 w/ the adapter ($94 + $17)?

Paintball

CGA320
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Old 12-28-2012, 08:04 PM   #2
scbrooks87
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I'd say go with the regular Paintball version... Having a regulator, then an adapter to make it fit a paintball tank seems like 1 more thing that could possibly go wrong hehe. I'll be ordering the paintball one in the future, just gotta save up for it!

That's my $.02 anyway...

Oh! and it looks like the CGA320 is more meant for introducing co2 into the air, rather than water, as it appears to have an air flow meter on it... that wouldn't be useful for aquatic purpose, as you'd want a bubble counter if anything.

Just another though!
-Scott
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Old 12-28-2012, 10:53 PM   #3
kevmo911
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Get a standard regulator with a paintball adapter. That way, when you upsize your cylinder, you won't have to immediately upgrade your regulator (well, not yet, anyway).

However, you said you want to get it right the first time. Unfortunately, the Aquatek regulators are not really compatible with that goal. Do some thread research here before you decide whether to buy. There's a very good reason the Aquateks are as cheap as they are.
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Old 12-29-2012, 01:54 AM   #4
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do what kevmo says. i did the whole regulator plus paintball adapter setup. in my 7 gallon, with glass diffuser, a 2 20 oz bottles last me about 3 months. i got tired of filling paintball tanks and upgraded to a 5 # tank. i recently upgraded from my milwaukee to a dual stage regulator, but im still working on rebuilding it. aquateks and milwaukee regs are usually a hit or miss kinda thing. spend the money on a custom built one from a member here on the forum.
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Old 12-29-2012, 03:44 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kevmo911 View Post
Get a standard regulator with a paintball adapter. That way, when you upsize your cylinder, you won't have to immediately upgrade your regulator (well, not yet, anyway).

However, you said you want to get it right the first time. Unfortunately, the Aquatek regulators are not really compatible with that goal. Do some thread research here before you decide whether to buy. There's a very good reason the Aquateks are as cheap as they are.
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Originally Posted by vnghost View Post
do what kevmo says. i did the whole regulator plus paintball adapter setup. in my 7 gallon, with glass diffuser, a 2 20 oz bottles last me about 3 months. i got tired of filling paintball tanks and upgraded to a 5 # tank. i recently upgraded from my milwaukee to a dual stage regulator, but im still working on rebuilding it. aquateks and milwaukee regs are usually a hit or miss kinda thing. spend the money on a custom built one from a member here on the forum.
I'm going to disagree here. Chances are that by the time you decide to upgrade the cylinder size, you'll also probably want to upgrade the regulator as well. I guess I'm just looking at it from a different angle.

I guess my point is that if you go cheapo the first time, you'll probably end up getting better equipment later. (I know I usually do...)

If size is an issue, you might consider a #2.5 cylinder and an atomic regulator. (That's about $100 more than what you'd be paying for the aquatek + paintball cylinder.)
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Old 12-29-2012, 03:49 AM   #6
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I see your angle. My upgrade from paintball to a bigger cylinder did push me into a regulator upgrade. I'm still working on that solenoid btw. I guess it depends on your budget and how u plan on using your co2


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Old 12-29-2012, 04:05 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oldpunk78 View Post
I'm going to disagree here. Chances are that by the time you decide to upgrade the cylinder size, you'll also probably want to upgrade the regulator as well. I guess I'm just looking at it from a different angle.

I guess my point is that if you go cheapo the first time, you'll probably end up getting better equipment later. (I know I usually do...)

If size is an issue, you might consider a #2.5 cylinder and an atomic regulator. (That's about $100 more than what you'd be paying for the aquatek + paintball cylinder.)
Thanks for the feedback, always appreciate the wisdom from this forum. I have some decisions to make. Not sure if I can afford the bigger system at the moment but also don't want to be disappointed if I could have just spent a few more dollars. This hobby kills me.
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Old 12-29-2012, 05:22 AM   #8
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hahaha it kills me too. but if i can do it all over id probably skip the cheap stuff i spent on. its all sitting in my closet now, my paint ball tanks, co2 adapter. once i get my nice dual stage regulator running ill be tossing all my old equip.
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Old 12-29-2012, 09:10 AM   #9
Darkblade48
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I've always taken the stance that pressurized CO2 is something that you should invest once in (properly), and that should be the end of that.
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A Primer to Pressurized CO2 and A Primer to Planted Tanks
Eheim Pimp #362 - Eheim 2213 x2, Eheim 2028, Eheim 2217, Eheim surface skimmer and Eheim autofeeder.
Victor Pimp #33 - HPT272-125-350-4M
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Old 12-29-2012, 05:25 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Darkblade48 View Post
I've always taken the stance that pressurized CO2 is something that you should invest once in (properly), and that should be the end of that.
I found a new 5lb tank on craigslist for $50 that I'm picking up today. I'll keep looking for the right regulator that fits in my budget. Thanks again for stern advice. I need it.
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Old 12-29-2012, 08:56 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mobruler78 View Post
I found a new 5lb tank on craigslist for $50 that I'm picking up today. I'll keep looking for the right regulator that fits in my budget. Thanks again for stern advice. I need it.
I would make sure that the CO2 cylinder has been recently hydro tested or else you will end up having to pay that fee yourself, adding to the cost of the cylinder (making the savings moot).
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A Primer to Pressurized CO2 and A Primer to Planted Tanks
Eheim Pimp #362 - Eheim 2213 x2, Eheim 2028, Eheim 2217, Eheim surface skimmer and Eheim autofeeder.
Victor Pimp #33 - HPT272-125-350-4M
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