DIY CO2 regulator - Page 4 - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #46 of 196 (permalink) Old 11-17-2018, 02:05 AM Thread Starter
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I am not thrilled with how huge this regulator is. I dont know if it really shows in the picture, but it is almost 4 inches across on the body. I am sure it would work perfectly. But, I feel I could do better on scale and quality. I did a little scouting and found a beautiful VWR 55850 2 Stage Regulator for $40 and change including shipping. I did a bit of research on it and found out that they sell for around $500 new and could not resist getting it. I am going to hang onto the Harris for a bit to make sure the VWR works well, but I will probably end up selling the Harris. the only thing I like about the Harris regulator is the large gauges. I may decide to swap the Harris gauges to the VWR regulator. I like the idea of having large gauges in the range that I will be using it. The low pressure gauge is scaled 0-60 on the Harris and the smaller gauge on the VWR is scaled 0-150. If I were to swap them I would swap them both for symmetry (OCD). The high pressure gauge is pretty much the same range. Does anyone foresee a problem running a 0-60 psi gauge on a 0-125 psi regulator? I think it would be unlikely that I would crank it up to max pressure, but do you think I could damage the gauge by over pressurizing it?

Last edited by AguaScape; 11-17-2018 at 04:41 AM. Reason: Gauge
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post #47 of 196 (permalink) Old 11-19-2018, 11:52 PM Thread Starter
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Yay! Yay! Yay!!! My "real" lab regulator arrived!!! In case you haven't noticed, I am pretty excited. It is a VWR 55850 and it is gorgeous. It weighs about the same as my Harris, but it is way more sexy. I may change the gauges in the future (maybe 0-1500 and 0-100 glycerine filled). But, these are in perfect condition and I do not want to add to the cost of the build quite yet. I will be making a trip to the store today to get a couple brass fittings I need to get everything in the configuration I want. I am taking photos of each step, but I will probably just post a photo of the regulator (as bought) and the completed build here. Saving the photos in case I decide to do a step by step thread later.

Bump: Special thanks to @PlantedRich, @jeffkrol, and @Botia dude who has been helping in the background.

Assembly is complete and I am thrilled with the result.

First photo is the regulator body as it arrived

Second photo is the parts laid out in the general planned layout.

Third photo is the completed assembly in operation.

I am so happy that you all helped me not only choose what to get but took the time to explain the hows and whys behind every part.

Thank You all!

Edit: the little bright spots on my table are bits of glitter bonded to the painted surface. Part of having a 4 year old daughter.
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Last edited by AguaScape; 03-26-2019 at 06:27 AM. Reason: glitter
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post #48 of 196 (permalink) Old 11-20-2018, 12:09 AM Thread Starter
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I wanted to make sure that all gauges and knobs were easily accessible from the front. I could have made it much more compact if I did not keep the shut off valve coming off the regulator and the adjustable pressure relief valve. But, it does make it easy to isolate the after body components and bleed off the pressure. I am amazed at how precise everything is.

Last edited by AguaScape; 11-20-2018 at 07:09 PM. Reason: Typo
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post #49 of 196 (permalink) Old 11-20-2018, 12:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AguaScape View Post
I wanted to make sure that all gauges and knobs were easily accessible from the front. I could have made it much more compact if I did not keep the shut off valve coming off the regulator and the adjustable pressure relief valve. But, it does make it easy to isolate the after body components and bleed of the pressure. I am amazed at how precise everything is.
That reg is looking super sexy in all brass! Congrats on completing your build. I'm happy to have helped in a small way.
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post #50 of 196 (permalink) Old 11-20-2018, 12:52 AM
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Same...
Looks really clean.. actually one of the best I've seen that left on the shutoff valve..

anyways how was the CGA removal?

Bump:
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post #51 of 196 (permalink) Old 11-20-2018, 12:58 AM Thread Starter
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Same...
Looks really clean.. actually one of the best I've seen that left on the shutoff valve..

anyways how was the CGA removal?

Bump:
Thanks! Removing the old CGA was not too hard. I used a 11/16-6 pt. socket (the 6 pt. part is important, a 12 pt. socket would end up rolling off since it does not have sharp corners). That and a little elbow grease. I placed the regulator body on a towel, put my weight on it, and pushed down on the socket wrench.

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That reg is looking super sexy in all brass! Congrats on completing your build. I'm happy to have helped in a small way.
You were a big help. Thanks!

Last edited by AguaScape; 11-20-2018 at 05:15 AM. Reason: 6 pt.
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post #52 of 196 (permalink) Old 11-20-2018, 01:10 AM Thread Starter
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Anybody know why no one manufactures male-male NPT 90's? They really would have helped with making things cleaner and tighter with less extra connections.
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post #53 of 196 (permalink) Old 11-20-2018, 01:13 AM
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Anybody know why no one manufactures male-male NPT 90's? They really would have helped with making things cleaner and tighter with less extra connections.
Like these guys?
https://www.swagelok.com/en/catalog/...il?part=B-4-ME
https://www.swagelok.com/en/catalog/...il?part=B-8-ME


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post #54 of 196 (permalink) Old 11-20-2018, 01:38 AM Thread Starter
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That 1/4 NPT would have come in handy. Could have used a couple 1/8 NPT male 90s as well.
What I really wanted was a 1/4 NPT male to 1/8 NPT male reducing 90.
I could not find any at three different hardware stores or on flea-bay.

It's ok though. Just had to adjust a bit and get creative.
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post #55 of 196 (permalink) Old 11-20-2018, 02:17 AM
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That 1/4 NPT would have come in handy. Could have used a couple 1/8 NPT male 90s as well.
What I really wanted was a 1/4 NPT male to 1/8 NPT male reducing 90.
I could not find any at three different hardware stores or on flea-bay.

It's ok though. Just had to adjust a bit and get creative.
Just found this. They're out there, just not common.

https://www.fittingconnection.com/el...elbow/130fr-42


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post #56 of 196 (permalink) Old 11-20-2018, 03:38 AM Thread Starter
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Just found this. They're out there, just not common.

https://www.fittingconnection.com/el...elbow/130fr-42
That would have worked beautifully.
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post #57 of 196 (permalink) Old 11-21-2018, 09:28 PM
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Awesome job, has me questioning my odd behavior from my Aquatek regulator, that is making a clicking sound as the CO2 flows and the pressure drops and then comes back up to the 40psi I have it set to. If you find anymore of those VWR's let me know. I wouldn't mind a better regulator that just works! LOL
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post #58 of 196 (permalink) Old 11-21-2018, 09:56 PM
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Awesome job, has me questioning my odd behavior from my Aquatek regulator, that is making a clicking sound as the CO2 flows and the pressure drops and then comes back up to the 40psi I have it set to. If you find anymore of those VWR's let me know. I wouldn't mind a better regulator that just works! LOL

just get this one..
132860053021
it's been taunting me for awhile now..


don't even need to swap CGA..

not new, gauges exchanged.. for comparison..
292788400122
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Last edited by jeffkrol; 11-21-2018 at 10:02 PM. Reason: edit
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post #59 of 196 (permalink) Old 11-22-2018, 06:51 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by jeffkrol View Post
just get this one..
132860053021
it's been taunting me for awhile now..


don't even need to swap CGA..

not new, gauges exchanged.. for comparison..
292788400122

That second one has two 0-60 gauges on it. It will blow the gauge as soon as CO2 is connected. I noticed that one and messaged the seller. He messaged me back "Thanks for the info, D". He still has not taken it off or put the correct gauge on it.
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Last edited by AguaScape; 11-22-2018 at 09:09 AM. Reason: response
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post #60 of 196 (permalink) Old 11-22-2018, 08:06 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by chayos00 View Post
Awesome job, has me questioning my odd behavior from my Aquatek regulator, that is making a clicking sound as the CO2 flows and the pressure drops and then comes back up to the 40psi I have it set to. If you find anymore of those VWR's let me know. I wouldn't mind a better regulator that just works! LOL
I picked up a few that I will be selling later. I removed details on them after reading the Sticky on the For Sale or Trade forum and I feel like that post did not belong here.
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Last edited by AguaScape; 11-26-2018 at 05:47 AM. Reason: Compliance with forum rules.
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