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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 09-01-2006, 06:27 PM Thread Starter
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PVC leaks

So I built my first CO2 reactor the other day.

And it leaked at the screw-in joins.

Lesson learned: teflon tape does NOT seal screw-in joins. Rather, screw that sucker as tight as possible and use PVC-compatible pipe thread compound. I used Harvey's TFE Paste from Home Depot. It's non-hardening, non-toxic, and best of all NON-LEAKING!

Me so happy now. Got it hooked to my new Rena XP3 and my green babies are pearling like there's no tomorrow.
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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 09-01-2006, 06:35 PM
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By chance is this your design or information gathered from the net? I would like to see some documentation if you might have some.
Thanks
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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 09-01-2006, 07:04 PM Thread Starter
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The reactor is based on the design at Rex Grigg's site (Rex's Guide to building a CO2 reactor. I had to mickey-mouse a few extra parts because I couldn't find exactly what Rex used at Home Depot. My wife has our digital camera with her at work but I'll see if I can post a pic or two of the finished reactor tonight.
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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 09-01-2006, 07:34 PM
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Teflon tape will seal PVC threads. But you have to use the thicker variety and still screw that thing down tight.
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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 09-01-2006, 07:50 PM
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The general use standard that I learned many years ago calls for 3 full wraps of tape around the threads. But if the fit is loose a few more wraps may be called for (or else try a different combination of parts).

I've been using the cheap, thin teflon tape from Lowes/HD for years and haven't had a threaded connection fail me yet.

óBill

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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 09-01-2006, 08:45 PM Thread Starter
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Hmm... The first time I wrapped around 3x and had leaks. The second time I went around 6x and had leaks. Then I ran out of teflon tape (the thin variety) so a trip to Home Depot was in order. There I talked to a seemingly knowledgeable employee (always hit or miss at HD) who said teflon tape is more intended as a thread lubricant so you can tighten the threads as easily and tightly as possible. He said it's the pipe THREADS not the tape that seals the joint. He had 3 recommendations for me: 1) no tape and just tighten as hard as I can; 2) use a thicker tape and tighten hard; and 3) use the putty and tighten hard. I chose #3 and it's working for me. :-) But really, whatever works for you is the best option to follow.

This was my first time working with PVC so it's all been a learning experience for me.
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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 09-01-2006, 11:29 PM Thread Starter
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Here's a photo of my finished reactor.

http://www.winterlong.com/CO2_Reactor.jpg
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