Good precise needle valves? - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-05-2020, 07:00 PM Thread Starter
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Good precise needle valves?

Just realized one of mine is going out. I can open it awfully wide and only get 2-3 bps. Diffuser is only 6 months old, so feel pretty certain this is the part giving me trouble. I got the original from Rex Grigg 15 years ago, and it's been in use a little more than half that time so I don't feel it was a bad purchase. I'd much rather drop more $ on one that I won't have to think about for a while though than get something that is either short-lived or hard to keep set. What are you guys using? TIA.

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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-05-2020, 07:16 PM
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Reg Grigg use fabco NV-55, ideal series 1 and swagelok, which one is yours?
you turned it too hard? the needle might be damaged, if not, you can open it, clean inside and see if the orings/seals need to be replaced.

there is another possible problem which cause the low bubble count, not the needle valve issue but there is a leak.
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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-05-2020, 07:25 PM Thread Starter
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It's a Fabco. I have a pair of them feeding 2 aquariums off of one regulator, and of course it would die on the one without a pH controller. I suppose it's possible that I turned it too hard, but I don't see how. I got them both adjusted, set up and running and suddenly in the last few days this one has been slowing way down. There's pressure on the line, I can't rule out a minor leak somewhere but I sure can't find one with soapy water. I'm inclined to replace rather than take this one apart but if I thought I could actually accomplish anything I'd dig into it once I have something else in hand in case I break it (or finish breaking it).

Would you have a link to anything you'd recommend?

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post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-05-2020, 07:49 PM
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I think the culprit is the leak, need to check a little bit more further, leakage is the most sneaky problem when we are dealing with co2 system issues.

for the needle valve, the same fabco nv-55 is available on evil bay, and official website.
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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-05-2020, 08:00 PM Thread Starter
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Checking your leak thread now, thanks for all the help!

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post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-06-2020, 02:14 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blue Ridge Reef View Post
Checking your leak thread now, thanks for all the help!

Can you take any check valves out of the line?
Besides soap tests it's the next thing to look at. Don't forget the one built into a bubble counter IF that applies.


Cranking the pressure up also helps reveal a sticky check valve.

Inless it's dirt in the needle valve the above 2 things are more likely..
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post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-09-2020, 12:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blue Ridge Reef View Post
Just realized one of mine is going out. I can open it awfully wide and only get 2-3 bps. Diffuser is only 6 months old, so feel pretty certain this is the part giving me trouble. I got the original from Rex Grigg 15 years ago, and it's been in use a little more than half that time so I don't feel it was a bad purchase. I'd much rather drop more $ on one that I won't have to think about for a while though than get something that is either short-lived or hard to keep set. What are you guys using? TIA.

I had a similar issue, thought the needle valve wasnít working, or something wrong with the regulator. I had placed a new diffuser on it about 2-3 months before. What I found was the diffuser was getting clogged very easily. I would clean out the diffuser, even bleached dip, worked well for 2-3 days then very little flow. Tubing was well pressurized just like you are seeing. Gas just didnít want to push through. I changed the diffuser and everything is working well.


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post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-09-2020, 12:49 AM Thread Starter
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Worth a shot. I have a whole new regulator coming this week from @Bettatail. If that doesn't solve the issue, I'll order a new diffuser and see if that does the trick. Thanks!

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post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-09-2020, 01:35 AM
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Worth a shot. I have a whole new regulator coming this week from @Bettatail. If that doesn't solve the issue, I'll order a new diffuser and see if that does the trick. Thanks!
If you have the room and are inclined to DIY, reactors (Griggs or Cerges) make life easier than using diffusers.
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post #10 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-09-2020, 01:48 AM
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Worth a shot. I have a whole new regulator coming this week from @Bettatail. If that doesn't solve the issue, I'll order a new diffuser and see if that does the trick. Thanks!


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post #11 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-09-2020, 07:58 PM Thread Starter
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Sorry, confused members! @Flowerfshs, got my lines crossed.
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post #12 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-27-2020, 08:11 PM
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Hi, just curious if you were able to fix the issue you had.

Quote:
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Worth a shot. I have a whole new regulator coming this week from @Bettatail. If that doesn't solve the issue, I'll order a new diffuser and see if that does the trick. Thanks!


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post #13 of 13 (permalink) Old 07-28-2020, 12:16 AM Thread Starter
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Not really, but I'm closer. When I first installed the new regulator, the bubble counter ran like a champ for a few, then petered out to where it had been. SO I know that a pressure surge will get it moving. I have a new check valve I'll replace the old one with before I try anything else, but that's going to involve boiling water to soften the (rather old) CO2 tubing attached to the bubble counter. I've had a lot on my plate this last few weeks, I'd have usually gotten to it by now but the tanks are doing well so I can move it down the list. If replacing the check valve doesn't work, I'll order a new needle valve. If that doesn't work, I'll replace all of the tubing at which point literally everything will be new.

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