CO2 System Build questions - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 26 (permalink) Old 05-28-2020, 06:16 PM Thread Starter
dow
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CO2 System Build questions

Well, I've decided to do a build-your-own CO2 system and have purchased a used regulator off of the bay. It's a VWR 55850-416, and I got it for a really good price. Seller claims it's in good working order, and offers 30 days to return. Anyway, I looked it up before making my offer, and here's the manufacturer's page: VWRģ Multistage Gas Regulators with Stainless Steel Diaphragms. Looks like their MSRP is $569, so I'm pretty happy with it provided that it arrives in advertised condition.

I've also found this Ideal metering valve (ebay no: 274375026815), so that leaves the following:
  • solenoid
  • manifold
  • bubble counter
  • check valve
  • tubing
  • diffuser
  • drop checker
  • and a handful of 1/4" and 1/8" NPT nipples and ells (which I'll map out once the regulator and valve get here).
Do you see anything that I may have missed?

Thanks,
Dow

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post #2 of 26 (permalink) Old 05-28-2020, 06:48 PM
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fitting list:
1/4 male npt to 1/8 male npt hex nipple
solenoid(manifold type, numatics or clippard)
1/8 male npt to 1/8 male npt elbow
ideal valve
1/8 male hex nipple


final setup with a burkert solenoid


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post #3 of 26 (permalink) Old 05-28-2020, 07:24 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the fitting list, Bettatail. Looks like I can source all of those locally at one of the big box stores . Now to locate the other components.

Oh, and I realize this is after the fact, but that regulator should be okay, shouldn't it?

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post #4 of 26 (permalink) Old 05-28-2020, 07:33 PM
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the regulator is a good one, but make sure the output pressure is within the range for our co2 system.

also, there is a video I make a while ago, about ideal needle valve 52-2-12, its precision is not as good as a swagelok S series, but it is readily available in 1/8 npt ports and it is ability to micro-adjust flow rate is within the manageable level. it is one of the best choice ATM, imo, another good candidate is the 1/8 npt port swagelok M series angle pattern metering valve(talk to flowerfishs, he has some).



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post #5 of 26 (permalink) Old 05-28-2020, 08:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dow View Post
Thanks for the fitting list, Bettatail. Looks like I can source all of those locally at one of the big box stores . Now to locate the other components.

Oh, and I realize this is after the fact, but that regulator should be okay, shouldn't it?
I think you are the one bought the ideal from me. Itís a good valve.
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post #6 of 26 (permalink) Old 05-28-2020, 08:40 PM
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I didn't see any mention of the solenoid cord or adapter plug. Make sure you have the correct one, or the solenoid will be toast.


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post #7 of 26 (permalink) Old 05-29-2020, 12:39 AM Thread Starter
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Bettatail: the valve I got was a 52-1-12, not the 2-12, so my understanding is that it's way more precise than the 2-12 valves.

flowerfishs: Was the valve you sold this one?



Joshism: Roger that. Once I get a solenoid heading this way, I'll locate an appropriate power supply for it.

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post #8 of 26 (permalink) Old 05-29-2020, 01:19 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dow View Post
Bettatail: the valve I got was a 52-1-12, not the 2-12, so my understanding is that it's way more precise than the 2-12 valves.

flowerfishs: Was the valve you sold this one?



Joshism: Roger that. Once I get a solenoid heading this way, I'll locate an appropriate power supply for it.
Yes. Thatís the one. Itís the 2 series.
The 1 series is more precision, but 2 series is good enough for what you need.
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post #9 of 26 (permalink) Old 05-29-2020, 01:56 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by flowerfishs View Post
Yes. Thatís the one. Itís the 2 series.
The 1 series is more precision, but 2 series is good enough for what you need.
Rats! I thought it was 1 series. I swear that I must be dyslexic part of the time.


Oh well.

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post #10 of 26 (permalink) Old 05-29-2020, 03:30 PM Thread Starter
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Special thanks to flowerfishs for offering to exchange the 52-2-12 valve that I mistakenly bought with more precise a Swagelok Nupro B-2MA2 “M” Series. He didn't have to do that, and I'm extremely pleased that he did.

Remember folks, when buying something on ebay that you're not entirely familiar with, ALWAYS double-check your numbers and then double-check them again.

Thanks flowerfishs!
Bettatail and flowerfishs like this.

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post #11 of 26 (permalink) Old 05-29-2020, 06:09 PM
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One of the tiny things and easy to miss in buying all the big stuff?
Between all the shopping, did you get a reg that already has the CGA 320 type nipple and nut for CO2? Also you will need a washer of some type, fiber, nylon or Perma-seal that goes between the flat face of the CO2 tank and the CGA320 nipple.
These are almost always easy to pick up at a local welding gas supply place. Often around the Ten dollars range so shipping is not always worth it to try to get a small savings online. If shopping at a welding shop, I tend to NOT mention, I'm changing a reg from one gas to another as some places are a bit gun shy about letting you do that.
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post #12 of 26 (permalink) Old 05-29-2020, 06:14 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by PlantedRich View Post
One of the tiny things and easy to miss in buying all the big stuff?
Between all the shopping, did you get a reg that already has the CGA 320 type nipple and nut for CO2? Also you will need a washer of some type, fiber, nylon or Perma-seal that goes between the flat face of the CO2 tank and the CGA320 nipple.
These are almost always easy to pick up at a local welding gas supply place. Often around the Ten dollars range so shipping is not always worth it to try to get a small savings online. If shopping at a welding shop, I tend to NOT mention, I'm changing a reg from one gas to another as some places are a bit gun shy about letting you do that.

Roger that. The reg came with a CGA 320 nipple and nut. There's also a nylon gasket in there, but it's in pretty rough shape. I took it out to look at it, and it looks like it's been on there for a while, so I'll be replacing it. There's some slight discoloration around the nipple where the nut rides on it when connected to a tank. From the looks of the nylon washer, I'm thinking its likely because of a leaky connection. I'm planning on having it checked out when I go to pick up a tank. If it leaks, then I'll just replace the nipple and nut.

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post #13 of 26 (permalink) Old 05-29-2020, 08:16 PM
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Sounds like a time to replace the washer just as a really cheap item that can save a loss of the whole tank of gas if we don't check carefully. One of those things that are so simple and cheap I don't remember what I paid for them! Some say to change it every time we fill the tank but if we are used to doing tank changes and have the right tools, like a good Crescent type wrench so we can get good torque on things, it will make the washer last much longer. The thing about washers of this sort is that we need to get them tight enough to compress a bit and not leak but they last nearly forever if we don't just screw it down so tight it kills the washer. Kind of one of those things that come with practice and using tools more. I would guess around the .25- . 50 range but I see Amazon has 10 for 5.99 and they are often not the cheapest place to buy as well as ten is way more than I would keep on hand. Got a home brew supply house any where close?
https://www.kegconnection.com/co2-cg...le-and-washer/
There may be some corrosion looking stuff if somebody has been doing leak checks with soap solution and not getting it wiped off really good. A soak in vinegar and wipe down my make it look new again.
Maybe worth a try to have a nice new look all around.
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post #14 of 26 (permalink) Old 05-29-2020, 08:44 PM
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If you get the Ideals with vernier handle is it more precise? I remember reading about that ages ago.
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post #15 of 26 (permalink) Old 05-29-2020, 09:09 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks PlantedRich, I suspect you're right. That washer's looking pretty rough. Here's a link to some pics I took of the washer, discoloration on the nipple, and the regulator itself. I'd say I got a pretty good deal for $40 plus shipping.

WVR Regulator Pics

Quote:
Originally Posted by gus6464 View Post
If you get the Ideals with vernier handle is it more precise? I remember reading about that ages ago.

It's not the vernier knob, it's the taper of the stem inside the valve itself. Here's a link to the Ideal valves: Forged Brass Needle Valves | Ideal Valve Inc. The 52-1-xx valves are more precise than the 52-2-xx valves. The last two numbers are just how the valve can be mounted.

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