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just to be clear, the housing is 5" in diameter at the top. it takes 2.5" cartridges if using it as an actual RO housing. you can get housings that take 4.5" cartridges, like this one:



https://ifilters.com/products/water...inch-34inch-ports?_pos=6&_sid=3bb3abed7&_ss=r


i don't have any issues with the linked housing, but i have plumbed a bypass to reduce reactor flow, and my largest tank is 80 system gallons. i can definitely see how a larger one could be useful for a much larger tank than my own.
don't assume, that is why a lot of people picking the 20X 2.5 thinking it is more efficient than the 10X 4.5.

 

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Yup. I checked the dimensions, the housing itself is 20"x5"x5"

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compare it is inner diameter of the case, where the threads at, it is also the wildest position.

correction:
ehh, actually, compare the inner diameter at the middle of the shell case.




see the difference? anyway, 20X2.5 is fine as long as it works well for your planted tank, ...
 

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i'm new here and genuinely curious...

i see plenty of people noting they use 20" housings for diy cerges reactors - are any/many/most using the 20x4.5? having the 2.5" cartridge versions and seeing how big they are, and looking at that picture^, they must be truly massive!
 

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i'm new here and genuinely curious...

i see plenty of people noting they use 20" housings for diy cerges reactors - are any/many/most using the 20x4.5? having the 2.5" cartridge versions and seeing how big they are, and looking at that picture^, they must be truly massive!
how big the filter housing to choose, depends on the water flow rate and the size of your planted tank.

as I said, 20 X 2.5 is fine if it works well, what I want to make clear here is the 10 X 4.5 is more efficient than the 20 X 2.5 for co2 diffusion, so if you can pick the 4.5 diameter and it is best to avoid 2.5, and of course, the best is 20 X 4.5 if it is needed for a large planted tank.

add:
20x4.5 or 10x4.5 is not big, it is big if the planted tank it works with is normal size.
 

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I've used this exact build on an FX5 with no problems. Black tubing inside the filter is just 1" corrugated pond tubing cut to size. I'd recommend this type of reactor for your 125g tank. You can also split a line before and after the reactor with a ball valve on the other line to control how much flow goes into the reactor if for whatever reason it is too much. This build was about $30 total:

Clear 10" filter housing with 3/4" ports - $20 on eBay
3/4" PVC nipple - $0.78 from PVC Fittings Online
3/4" FPT Tee - $1.41
3/4" x 1/4" reducer MPT x FPT - $0.60
3/4" Barb x MPT adapter - (2) $1.62
1/4" MPT x 3/16" barb brass fitting - $5 at Home Depot

 

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So what actually breaks up the CO2 bubbles in something like this? I'm asking because I pick up a system tomorrow that I am putting on my 180 gal and Something like this would work better I think.
 

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CO2 will simply dissolve in water, as long as there is enough surface area of the gas bubbles (diffuser), or there is something that keep the bubble tumbling in current (reactor). The purpose of this discussion is that there needs to be the correct amount of water flow for the amount of CO2 you're injecting. Too much flow, and the water pushes the bubbles out of the reactor. To little flow, and the bubbles gather into a pocket at the top of the reactor.
 

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Discussion Starter #29
I've used this exact build on an FX5 with no problems. Black tubing inside the filter is just 1" corrugated pond tubing cut to size. I'd recommend this type of reactor for your 125g tank. You can also split a line before and after the reactor with a ball valve on the other line to control how much flow goes into the reactor if for whatever reason it is too much. This build was about $30 total:

Clear 10" filter housing with 3/4" ports - $20 on eBay
3/4" PVC nipple - $0.78 from PVC Fittings Online
3/4" FPT Tee - $1.41
3/4" x 1/4" reducer MPT x FPT - $0.60
3/4" Barb x MPT adapter - (2) $1.62
1/4" MPT x 3/16" barb brass fitting - $5 at Home Depot

Oh sweet. Thanks for the detailed build explanation. I was looking for where to find the adapter for the co2 tubing cause i couldn't find the name of it. My housing should come in tomorrow. Amazon said the dimensions were 20x4.5, but the photos looks kinda sketch. If it's not, then I'll have to return it.

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Discussion Starter #30 (Edited)
So what actually breaks up the CO2 bubbles in something like this? I'm asking because I pick up a system tomorrow that I am putting on my 180 gal and Something like this would work better I think.
From what I've seen, people fill up the housing a type of media of their choosing. I plan on taking a sponge that ill cut to size for a disk or two, and then fill the rest of the housing with small lava rocks. Im gonna try about 1/3 sponge and 2/3 lava rock.

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Discussion Starter #32
I dont know why I didn't do this sooner.

I didnt check the outside dimensions of the 20x4.5. Theyre bigger than the outside dimensions of the 20x2.5. Welp, I made a mistake. I got ahead of myself and just assumed rather than taking 2 extra minutes to double check.

I hope someone can learn from mistake.

I canceled my order on the 20x2.5, and ordered a 20x4.5. There was an option to get it "Used, Very Good" which made it cheaper and just barely within the budget, so im glad it worked out.

Thank you guys for all your help and patience with me as I learn.

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Discussion Starter #33
What about using something like K1 in there? I have a bunch of that I'm not using right now.
Again, im still learning about this, so im only speaking from what I learned through research and watching/learning from some experienced aquarists.

I think it K1 media should work. It'll provide a physical substance to break apart the bubbles, and also provide additional bio filtration. I've seen people put in those bio-balls, so it doesn't seem to me that what you put in there is super important.

The reason I'm gonna be using sponge and lava rock is not because I think it's superior, but because it's what I have on hand and don't have to buy extra. And lava rock for me was less than $5 for 50lbs at Homedepot. So I bought two bags.

I used up 1 bag already cayse I used about 60% in my scape to put under the substrate (to help prevent ammonia pockets from top thick of a substrate level, and also extra bio-filtration cause it's heavily porous so lots of surface area for beneficial bacteria to grow). The remaining 40% of the first bag i put into different tanks in mesh/netted bags so that I can jump start my 125 and make the cycling period shorter. I'll just put the bags of lava rock in th3 sump and then pour in loose lava rock (from the 2nd bag) to fill in the remaining space.

Sorry, I went a little off topic, but to come back around, in my inexperienced yet researched opinion, I think K1 would work great.

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i'm curious if there's really any net benefit to putting media in your co2 reactor.

part of the beauty of a cerges reactor is that it's largely a maintenance-free device. if you put media in there - especially sponges - you're going to have to clean it out regularly and your flow will degrade as the media get clogged. just an open space for bubbles to churn but not escape is all that's really needed.
 

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Discussion Starter #35
i'm curious if there's really any net benefit to putting media in your co2 reactor.



part of the beauty of a cerges reactor is that it's largely a maintenance-free device. if you put media in there - especially sponges - you're going to have to clean it out regularly and your flow will degrade as the media get clogged. just an open space for bubbles to churn but not escape is all that's really needed.
Mmm. Interesting. I didnt know that reactors were purposed for being little to no maintenance. I specifically wanted to put sponges to help filter out some of the stuff that got missed in the sump filtration.

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Mmm. Interesting. I didnt know that reactors were purposed for being little to no maintenance. I specifically wanted to put sponges to help filter out some of the stuff that got missed in the sump filtration.

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i would caution against trying to double purpose your co2 reactor as additional mechanical filtration. i think it will only add maintenance for you and has the potential to induce inconsistency in your co2 infusion rate.
 

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Discussion Starter #38
i would caution against trying to double purpose your co2 reactor as additional mechanical filtration. i think it will only add maintenance for you and has the potential to induce inconsistency in your co2 infusion rate.
Yea, I agree. And now im thinking of building my own housing instead of buying one. Here's a YouTube link to a video I saw a while ago which I think I might base my build off of.



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I'd say the flow pattern of #1 with the co2 injection point of #2.

Edit: if you inject the co2 at the bottom of a Cerges it will immediately get sucked out of the reactor. You want to force the bubbles to churn high in the reactor and only be able to get near the bottom once they're quite small.
 
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