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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-23-2007, 01:17 AM Thread Starter
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Auto top-off/change

Has anyone seen this system?

http://cgi.ebay.com/Tsunami-Auto-Top...QQcmdZViewItem

A pressure sensor turns power on and off, could be utilized with a solenoid.

or

Rex, do you have any clippard parts that would be comparable to these?

http://www.autotopoff.com/products/solenoid/index.htm

After my CO2 substandard solenoid (everyone's dead) experience, I'm even less interested in solenoids that don't fail closed.
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-23-2007, 05:59 AM
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Originally Posted by original kuhli View Post
Has anyone seen this system?

http://cgi.ebay.com/Tsunami-Auto-Top...QQcmdZViewItem

A pressure sensor turns power on and off, could be utilized with a solenoid.

or

Rex, do you have any clippard parts that would be comparable to these?

http://www.autotopoff.com/products/solenoid/index.htm

After my CO2 substandard solenoid (everyone's dead) experience, I'm even less interested in solenoids that don't fail closed.
While I'm not Rex, I do have some of those autotopoff.com solenoids. I'm not sure I'd classify them as substandard. Decent quality. Maybe not Clippard level, but I plumbed two of them inline for redundancy with a 1/4" stainless nipple, and with these, it's inexpensive enough to do reasonably.
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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-23-2007, 03:15 PM Thread Starter
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To clarify, the solenoid that failed open was a blueline/milwaukee one. It killed everything in my tank when it dumped all the CO2 in. My question should have been more like "what reputation for quality do these solenoids have?".

Redundancy isn't a bad idea. Do you drain your tank with a 1/4 line? If so, how long does it take to drain say 10%? I'm guessing these might be on your fill line. If that's the case, how's the fill rate?
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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-24-2007, 12:48 AM
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To clarify, the solenoid that failed open was a blueline/milwaukee one. It killed everything in my tank when it dumped all the CO2 in. My question should have been more like "what reputation for quality do these solenoids have?".

Redundancy isn't a bad idea. Do you drain your tank with a 1/4 line? If so, how long does it take to drain say 10%? I'm guessing these might be on your fill line. If that's the case, how's the fill rate?
I cannot speak for their reputation, but I've not had any problems in 9 months of continuous use.

I use two of them inline for tap filling the tank, but I don't use tap. Just there in case I want to use tap for the minerals, etc. I have a separate controller with dual solenoids integrated (Oceanus Systems) for controlling RO fill. This is what I use as fill solely. It tops off about once a day and fills up after a water drain daily.

I use one of the autotopoff.com solenoids for the drain. I didn't see the need for redundancy in a drain. Even if it stuck open, I would still have 60% of the water in the tank before an airlock prevented further drainage. Instead of 1/8" NPT to 1/4" JG fittings, I put on 1/8" NPT to 3/8" JG fittings on both ends and I use a 3/8" line for drain. I'm using a dedicated pump for this purpose, though (Iwaki MD-15R), and it takes about 30 minutes to drain 20% (20 gallons). That's through at least a 30 foot run ...
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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-24-2007, 01:54 AM
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I have. It's a POS.

The pressure sensor utilizes a cheap membrane that is air permeable. That means, when you are using air to pressurize the sensor - as this rig does, you will experience significant change in the levels in which it detects a high or low conditions. That's because the air in the tube leaks through the membrane, lowering the pressure in the tube.

Don't waste your money. I already did it for you. Now we both know.

PS - every system on the market, marketed for less than a few hundred bucks, that works the same way will use the same crappy sensor membranes. I've got some "perfectly good", "barely used" ones that anyone foolish enough to buy should PM me for.

Steve - 33g reef and a 180g planted in need of a re-scape.
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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-24-2007, 03:59 PM
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Solenoids should have at least 2 for a back up, stay away from those pressure membrane things, bad idea.......float valves.........better idea. Don't forget to flush

Regards,
Tom Barr




Regards,
Tom Barr
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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-24-2007, 04:50 PM
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Solenoids should have at least 2 for a back up, stay away from those pressure membrane things, bad idea.......float valves.........better idea. Don't forget to flush

Regards,
Tom Barr
Flush the drain water line? Good idea. I was wondering if/when crud would block up the thing. I have it plumbed after the filters, though, so macro-crud should be minimal.
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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-24-2007, 04:58 PM Thread Starter
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I've convinced myself that the redundancy is necessary on the fill, and that the drain can get by with one. Thanks for all the good info.

Now on to the float switch...I'm a bit saddened as it will be the only thing in the tank...gonna have to find a sexy solution...
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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-24-2007, 05:19 PM
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www.aquahub.com sells the parts for DIY ATO systems. Looks a lot better than the autotopoff.com systems. I have 3 sets of the autotopoff.com systems though, they work great.


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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-27-2007, 06:48 PM Thread Starter
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Found this one too, a slick way to escape the DIY planning pain. Trouble is I've an AC Jr in between the power and the sensor.

http://www.reefwerks.com/index.php?a...od&productId=2
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post #11 of 11 (permalink) Old 08-27-2007, 11:06 PM
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sorry to totally hi-jack the thread but just how does a auto empty-refill water change work? I'm not Mario so can't figure out how one would work
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