DIY CO2 kit online - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-28-2013, 02:55 AM Thread Starter
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DIY CO2 kit online

has anyone bought the DIY kits that are sold on fleabay that have those screw on caps with the pressure gauge piped and the line for it too? It looks like they're under $30.
If you're new to CO2 with a moderately planted tank with moderate lighting and only 29 gallons is that the way to go? Or, does someone recommend a better option? And if you do this DIY system do you just let it run 24/7 at this relatively small level or do you have to manually shut it down each night? I don't want to have to turn something off each night but if it can be left on (maybe because it doesn't generate enough CO2 to hurt any fish) or it can be tied to a timer somehow (I do have a dual dial timer for lighting), that would be good. Appreciate any help on this. I'm trying to get my new planted tank balanced out and I have the right substrate, I have enough lights, I have the plants, etc but I'm missing the CO2.
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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-28-2013, 03:02 AM
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I have seen those kits and think the caps look interesting. I can tell you from experience you will not produce enough co2 in a DIY system to gas your fish at night, so it runs 24/7 with no issues. I have a 20g long and use 2 separate 1g jugs for my co2 production and have had no problems. With that being said, I feel like DIY co2 is an upgrade waiting to happen. If its something you're just wanting to experiment with go for it, but I grow tired of replacing solution and having fluctuating gas levels in my tank. A pressurized system will be much more reliable and will be able to eradicate any algae much easier than a DIY unit because you can dial in a consistent rate of co2.
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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-28-2013, 03:45 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Edub View Post
I have seen those kits and think the caps look interesting. I can tell you from experience you will not produce enough co2 in a DIY system to gas your fish at night, so it runs 24/7 with no issues. I have a 20g long and use 2 separate 1g jugs for my co2 production and have had no problems. With that being said, I feel like DIY co2 is an upgrade waiting to happen. If its something you're just wanting to experiment with go for it, but I grow tired of replacing solution and having fluctuating gas levels in my tank. A pressurized system will be much more reliable and will be able to eradicate any algae much easier than a DIY unit because you can dial in a consistent rate of co2.
Thanks for the input. I was looking at the pressurized systems but I can't afford these couple/few hundred dollar systems anytime soon. I also looked at the sub $100 ones for a tank like my size (29 gallon) but it seems replacing those little cylinders may add up too??? Is there another system you know of that I'm missing? I'm not thrilled about having to constantly keep mixing stuff up and checking on it either. But I can't spend a few hundred bucks and whatever I do has to fit within the confines of my stand underneath the tank since this is in Kitchen and visible to everyone. I need to get my algae under control in the tank and if lack of CO2 is what's doing it then I need to get on the ball..

I just saw another DIY two bottle system from Hong Kong or wherever that has a box that connects the two 2L bottles and the system comes with a diffuser, the gauge, tubing, and the control valve. I think it was $36. They seemed to talk about using citric acid and baking soda I believe for the reaction. But I see a lot of people on the forum talking about yeast and water, etc. Is one better than the other?

I also so an electric solenoid so that answers my one question about being able to turn the system off by timer I guess...
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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-28-2013, 01:50 PM
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I have a diy and its doing great. A few plants are even pearling.


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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-28-2013, 02:34 PM
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Yeast and water is cheap and readily available. With a good mix and a leak proof system you should get 2-4 weeks of bubbles at least. I use champagne yeast in my set up and it lasts a bit longer, a local store has it for a few cents per pack more than bread yeast.

As far as cheap pressurized systems go, paintball co2 might be the best option. I know you can buy a cheap (cheap) regulator for under $100 that will fit a regular tank or a paintball tank with an adaptor, or you can buy a smaller paintball regulator for much less than that. Of course paintball tanks are available at Walmart, Craigslist, etc. The more bells and whistles you want on your regulator the more expensive It gets. There's a member on here that has a pretty extensive thread on setting up a paintball co2 system, give it a look.

Once again nothing against DIY, but I'm in the process of upgrading myself and thought I'd let you know the path of co2 and gorgeous plants only pulls you in deeper and deeper...
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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-29-2013, 02:37 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the advice. I'm thinking the same thing about DIY. I like the idea and cost factor of it but I can also see how messing with the mix may get old among other things I have to do. would a 29 gallon tank moderately planted burn through the paintball canisters quickly or is that something that could last a reasonably long time? I'm not trying to create the next award winning aquascape. I just want something that will look nice in my kitchen with some cool fish and get the whole ecosystem going.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Edub View Post
Yeast and water is cheap and readily available. With a good mix and a leak proof system you should get 2-4 weeks of bubbles at least. I use champagne yeast in my set up and it lasts a bit longer, a local store has it for a few cents per pack more than bread yeast.

As far as cheap pressurized systems go, paintball co2 might be the best option. I know you can buy a cheap (cheap) regulator for under $100 that will fit a regular tank or a paintball tank with an adaptor, or you can buy a smaller paintball regulator for much less than that. Of course paintball tanks are available at Walmart, Craigslist, etc. The more bells and whistles you want on your regulator the more expensive It gets. There's a member on here that has a pretty extensive thread on setting up a paintball co2 system, give it a look.

Once again nothing against DIY, but I'm in the process of upgrading myself and thought I'd let you know the path of co2 and gorgeous plants only pulls you in deeper and deeper...
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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-29-2013, 04:24 PM
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Today I setup my Sodastream conversion kit.

So 18 for over a years worth of CO2 :-) I currently have it at 1 bubble every 5 seconds, as its only a 19l tank.
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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-29-2013, 05:03 PM
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I seen thst the other day, it looked like a cool idea.. I also seen one with a changable carbon block, would like to know how well they work for the money??? I believe the second onr was around 50 $
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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-29-2013, 05:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Edub View Post
With that being said, I feel like DIY co2 is an upgrade waiting to happen.
Absolutely this!!! I was running 2 seperate systems on a 20 and 10 gallon and finally got tired of it. Some sort of pressurized system is what you are going to get eventually, just do it now.

A paintball system is probably the cheaper way and the bottles are easy enough to find and refill. There are a lot of threads on here about setting one up.

Keep an eye on Craigslist and Kijiji to.
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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-30-2013, 02:36 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Rocky5 View Post
Today I setup my Sodastream conversion kit.

So 18 for over a years worth of CO2 :-) I currently have it at 1 bubble every 5 seconds, as its only a 19l tank.

Neat pic. Now how much does that regulator and pressure gauge cost? that's an electronic solenoid too, right? that system seems pretty simple. Tank looks big.
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post #11 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-30-2013, 02:48 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Edub View Post
Yeast and water is cheap and readily available. With a good mix and a leak proof system you should get 2-4 weeks of bubbles at least. I use champagne yeast in my set up and it lasts a bit longer, a local store has it for a few cents per pack more than bread yeast.

As far as cheap pressurized systems go, paintball co2 might be the best option. I know you can buy a cheap (cheap) regulator for under $100 that will fit a regular tank or a paintball tank with an adaptor, or you can buy a smaller paintball regulator for much less than that. Of course paintball tanks are available at Walmart, Craigslist, etc. The more bells and whistles you want on your regulator the more expensive It gets. There's a member on here that has a pretty extensive thread on setting up a paintball co2 system, give it a look.

Once again nothing against DIY, but I'm in the process of upgrading myself and thought I'd let you know the path of co2 and gorgeous plants only pulls you in deeper and deeper...
Do you think a 20oz tank is large enough? Or should I be trying to get a larger cylinder? The tank is 29 gallons.
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post #12 of 12 (permalink) Old 07-30-2013, 03:42 AM
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Neat pic. Now how much does that regulator and pressure gauge cost? that's an electronic solenoid too, right? that system seems pretty simple. Tank looks big.
29.99 for the sodastream adapter & 47 for the regulator + solenoid + 8 delivery.

The tank is a fluval spec v panted.

Have it setup to come on with the light & off.

Supposedly you can get about 4 months out of one 60L Co2 bottle if you have it at 1bps for 8 hours a day, I have mine at 1bp5s for 12 hours, going to reduce this to 9, so my bottle will last 10 fold & I bought two, also you get a discount when you take an empty back.
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