Which Co2 system for the technically challenged? - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-23-2006, 06:15 PM Thread Starter
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Which Co2 system for the technically challenged?

Can someone suggest a complete system for a newbie who is not good with technical stuff such as myself? ; ) I have a 30 gallon cube with 96 watt Coralife Quad fixture (swapping bulbs to the freshwater 6500k bulbs.) Would it be easier to do DIY Co2? I know I could build that but I'm afraid of not regulating it correctly and messing it up. This is all foreign to me since I have reef aquariums and never ventured into freshwater plants before. Thanks.
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post #2 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-23-2006, 08:03 PM
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Define "complete".
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post #3 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-23-2006, 09:21 PM Thread Starter
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Well I mean all the parts are there except for the tank, I think. I just want a way of delivering Co2 that's easy to do without racking my brain excessively which I do every day anyway ; ) Foster and Smith sells a semi automatic and a fully automated system. The semi automated system is more appealing to me because of the price and it still seems to be pretty easy to manage. Fish : CO2 Systems & Accessories
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post #4 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-23-2006, 09:38 PM
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No check valve, wrong tubing, cheap regulator.

If all you want is a system that you can control with a solenoid then look for the Azoo regulator. It's on sale at one place for $56. Get some tubing, a check valve, a timer and the cylinder and you are pretty much ready to go once you also get the diffusion method.
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post #5 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-23-2006, 09:57 PM
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Just get everything from Rex. Go to Rex's Guide to Planted Tanks and to the CO2 stuff for sale page. Better yet, read through Rex's pages. I did...many many times. I got a solenoid, needle valve, brass check valve, and Clippard tubing from Rex and love it. The only reason I didn't get everything else is because I got a used tank with a regulator on it already locally.

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post #6 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-23-2006, 11:08 PM
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And I will be building some bubble counters this weekend.
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post #7 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-24-2006, 03:09 AM
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Rex, the tubing included in the semi automatic package from Drs F&S isn't C02 Proof . . .?!?!
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post #8 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-24-2006, 04:46 AM Thread Starter
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Thank you for your help. I have read Rex's guide but that was several months back when I first started thinking of going green. I was out of the loop for a while but now I'm back. I set up a new reef tank and my little cube is getting ready for some plants and fish.
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post #9 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-24-2006, 06:51 AM
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Originally Posted by Rex Grigg View Post
And I will be building some bubble counters this weekend.
Dang, and right after I did a DIY water bottle bubble counter.

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post #10 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-24-2006, 12:02 PM
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Rex, the tubing included in the semi automatic package from Drs F&S isn't C02 Proof . . .?!?!
Define CO2 proof.

It doesn't break down in the presence of CO2 so that's one definition. But since it's silicone it does lose a lot of CO2. Up to 6% per foot.



The bubble counters may or may not work out. But I'm going to give it a try.
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post #11 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-25-2006, 02:08 AM
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Sorry to hijack the thread...but it begs to be asked...Rex, what will the bubble counter be like????
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post #12 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-25-2006, 12:19 PM
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3/4" clear PVC with straight though design. With a neat vacuum clamp to hold it to the aquarium.

I will get a picture posted as soon as I get it built.
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post #13 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-27-2006, 02:23 AM
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That sounds cool Rex!

BTW for folks that are not technically skilled I would recommend using a diffuser as opposed to a reactor as the way of dissolving Co2 into the tank. No special plumbing or pumps needed! A little more maintainance though because you have to clean when it gets coated with algae and debris.
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post #14 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-27-2006, 03:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rex Grigg View Post
3/4" clear PVC with straight though design. With a neat vacuum clamp to hold it to the aquarium.

I will get a picture posted as soon as I get it built.
Nice, can't wait to see this.

Walter

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post #15 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-30-2006, 12:47 AM
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Or you can get a Milwaukee Co2 regulator, which has been the best selling Aquarium C02 regulator in the USA for the last five years, for 78 dollars, which includes the regulator, a bubble counter, and a solenoid valve.

Milwaukee regulator

Polyeurathane tubing from Clippard is more rigid and not as porus as silicone tubing, but I do not know where Rex gets this 6% leakage per foot, or whatever he said. That seems quite high. With that much of a leak you would hear a hiss and it would bubble when sprayed with water: and that does not happen. The gas passing thru silicone are micro fractures and not traceable.

Reactors are easy to hook up. No plumbing needed. The one pictures by Dr Foster and Smith is the Reactor 1000 from Aqua Medic which is an external reactor for large aquariums. The Plant Guild Power reactor has been a favorite for almost ten years now. It includes a Rio 50 pump already attached. All you do is plug it in and connect the C02 tubing and you are done. A diffusor is a glorified air stone that simply bubbles the gas into the water. Cheap, easy to hook up. Wastes a lot of gas.

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