fluval co2 mini system
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Old 01-11-2013, 01:30 AM   #1
briansbelle
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fluval co2 mini system


does anyone use this? i plan on using a bigger setup later on but this is just a starter setup.

can i use a glass bell diffuser for this? or would it not put out enough psi?

thanks!!
belle
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Old 01-11-2013, 02:00 AM   #2
kevmo911
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The cost over time of cartridge systems is phenomenal. Don't do it.

It will also not be possible to use much, if anything, of the system when it comes time to upgrade to a paintball or industrial cylinder rig.

But yes, you can use any basic diffuser with this system.
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Old 01-11-2013, 02:11 AM   #3
briansbelle
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Thanks! I already have it, picked it up used for cheap. Will only be using it for a very short time until my bday in April...then I will upgrade to a paintball setup.
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Old 01-12-2013, 01:38 AM   #4
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I was very interested in this system when it first came out. I already have a full size CO2 setup but I wanted something simple at my GF's house, before we moved in. The cost of the system, plus refills is astronomical compared to a standard setup. Some members have said it's not a true regulator, just a glorified needle valve setup. Supposedly it's hard to dial in. Threads are propriatary too so it takes modification if you want to use other cartridges. Just saying, no reason not to use it now but if you keep it for any period of time, you are wasting money.
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Old 01-12-2013, 01:55 AM   #5
briansbelle
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Yeah I wont use it long term. Maybe keep it around just as a backup incase my.larger system runs out and I cannot get to refill it.

Now any ideas on a good co2 setup for an 11.4 gallon?
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Old 01-12-2013, 03:38 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by briansbelle View Post
Yeah I wont use it long term. Maybe keep it around just as a backup incase my.larger system runs out and I cannot get to refill it.

Now any ideas on a good co2 setup for an 11.4 gallon?
A standard 5 or 10 pound CO2 cylinder would be fine.
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Old 01-12-2013, 03:47 AM   #7
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regulator types?

Thanks
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Old 01-12-2013, 04:23 AM   #8
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There are an enormous number of threads dedicated to the types and availability of regulators in the equipment forum. Start with the stickies and work from there. The price range will be from $35 to $200 for decent-to-excellent regulators. Victor, Harris Group, and Parker are a few widely-rebranded, high quality manufacturers. All manufacturers have a range of models from "kia" to "freaking maserati".

Milwaukee, Azoo, Aquatek, and Dici (and their clones) are examples of complete rigs. They are also examples of what not to buy if you expect to not replace your regulator in the next year or two. Again, look through some threads.
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Old 01-12-2013, 05:19 AM   #9
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Whatever you do, don't buy those over sea clones. When the box says "Two Stage" and the manual has translation problems, I should of known that it was a bad idea.

You got a wrench? You got Google? You can build one yourself.

BUT,

I don't agree fully with what kevmo says about the retail ones. There are people using these cheap regulators and are doing fine. My Aquatic Life was on a 5lb for nearly a year, it gave me a stable bubble count and had no problems.

And no, I'm not bias, I'm building a custom one myself.

I used to think the custom build regulators people sell were completely over price. After trying to find and build one myself, the price is actually really fair. I think there a few threads with a complete set up for sale at around 200 - 250.

Search for some Matheson or a Concoa. I think there a Matheson 3810 listed right now, best looking regulator in my opinion.
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Old 01-16-2013, 03:32 AM   #10
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To answer your initial question, I have a co-worker who has been running the 88g version of the fluval disposable cartridge CO2 setups at home and he loves it. You do have to manually turn it on and off daily, but for what it is and how small it is, it's pretty nice if you understand the long term cost of the canisters.

I think for a small 5G tank, the one you have would be perfect for an environment with less space that you wanted to run CO2 in

As far as long term, I know I already mentioned it when I picked up the Chi, but I've been running an Aquatek paintball regulator. It's ready to connect to the tank out of the box and was about 95 shipped. Plugs right in to my timer, uses no tank adapters and it includes a bubble counter/check valve. Admittedly not the raddest looking bubble counter, but it's there and it does its thing. I just picked up a second one to run on my 35 gal planted tank at home and ordered the accessories from one of our vendors since they have the diffusers and drop checkers and tubing etc pretty cheap.

Total spent about $155 for a complete setup with regulator, bubble counter, drop checker, tubing, diffuser and paintball tank (including $20 for the tank, filled at the paintball store in the heath mall)

Good luck with the setup. Stoked to see both of them flooded
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Old 01-16-2013, 11:05 PM   #11
briansbelle
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is the milwakee regulator that bad? i found one for a reall y good price. with dual gages and bubble counter.
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Old 01-17-2013, 12:13 AM   #12
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is the milwakee regulator that bad? i found one for a reall y good price. with dual gages and bubble counter.
The MA957 usually comes with dual gauges and bubble counter.

Some people will swear by the MA957 while others do not like it. There are both good and bad reports.

In the end though, it is up to you what you want to do.
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A Primer to Pressurized CO2 and A Primer to Planted Tanks
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Old 01-17-2013, 12:25 AM   #13
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I just want something cheap and easy to use, just not cheaply built.

I can get the regulator and a 5lb co2 tank shipped for $159.
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Old 01-17-2013, 01:03 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by briansbelle View Post
I just want something cheap and easy to use, just not cheaply built.
In general, those two are mutually exclusive adjectives...

Quote:
Originally Posted by briansbelle View Post
I can get the regulator and a 5lb co2 tank shipped for $159.
I would check to make sure the cylinder is hydrotested.

I would say this is not a great deal. I think the MA957 can be had brand new for ~$90, and then a 5 pound cylinder filled costs ~$65.
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A Primer to Pressurized CO2 and A Primer to Planted Tanks
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Victor Pimp #33 - HPT272-125-350-4M
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Old 01-17-2013, 01:13 AM   #15
briansbelle
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The $159 is brand new, both.
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