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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
i think im in need of a co2 setup but i dont know squat about them really so any suggestions on a good complete setup?

i thinkin low maint and under or around 400 buckeroos
 

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i thought this was a good deal for a regulator
http://www.aquabuys.com/page/aqb/PROD/co2_kit_basic
You will find that many people do not recommend the Milwaukee regulator. While some people have had great experience with this regulator, others have had terrible experiences with it.

The stock needle valve that comes with the Milwaukee is not the best, and may require frequent readjusting before you obtain a stable CO2 rate.

You are definitely better off buying a quality system from Orlando on GLA if you are unwilling to buy the parts separately.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
You will find that many people do not recommend the Milwaukee regulator. While some people have had great experience with this regulator, others have had terrible experiences with it.

The stock needle valve that comes with the Milwaukee is not the best, and may require frequent readjusting before you obtain a stable CO2 rate.

You are definitely better off buying a quality system from Orlando on GLA if you are unwilling to buy the parts separately.
is buying the parts separately cheaper? and i know nothing about c02 systems is there a list of stuff id need somewhere?
 

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is buying the parts separately cheaper? and i know nothing about c02 systems is there a list of stuff id need somewhere?
Buying the parts separately will be cheaper, especially if you bargain hunt and wait for the best deals on eBay and/or the Swap and Shop forums.

Here is a list of parts that you will need.

CO2 Tank
Get the largest tank that you can afford. Tank prices are not that all that different. For example, a 10 lb tank will not cost twice as much as a 5 lb tank. In addition, the larger the tank, the less often you will have to refill it. Refill costs are another issue. Larger tanks in general, cost nearly the same to refill as a smaller tank.

Regulator
This controls the delivery of the CO2. It will reduce the tank pressure from 800 PSI to about 30 PSI. There are many different regulators you can look at, such as Victor, Cornelius, Mattheson, Concoa, etc. There are single stage and dual stage regulators. Try to get a dual gauge (note, dual stage is not the same as dual gauge) regulator, so that you can monitor both delivery pressure as well as the CO2 tank pressure (amount of CO2 left in the tank).

Needle/Metering Valve
A good needle/metering valve is your best friend and arguably the most important piece of equipment. The needle/metering valve will reduce the pressure from 30 PSI to a few bubbles per second. Again, you have several brands to choose from including: Clippard, Fabco, Swagelok, and Ideal. The latter 2 are probably the "best" brands (i.e. they are ht most reliable and will not float once they are set).

Solenoid (Optional)
This will allow you to turn off your CO2 automatically via a timer or a pH controller. Some people like to keep their CO2 on all the time, while others use a solenoid to turn it off at night.

Check Valve ("Optional" - see below)
Technically optional, but is required. You don't want water to back siphon and destroy your regulator. Brass ones are better than plastic ones, which will be corroded by the CO2 with time.

Bubble counter (Optional)
Will allow easy monitoring of the CO2 flow rate. You can DIY one yourself if you want.

Drop checker (Optional)
Allows easy monitoring of the amount of CO2 in the aquarium. Again, you can DIY one yourself or purchase one.

Diffuser/Reactor
You will need some way to get your CO2 to efficiently dissolve into the water column. Whether this be with a glass diffuser with a ceramic disc or an in-line reactor will epend on the size of your aquarium and what kind of setup you have.
 

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My main advice would be to spend a bit more on an "aquairum specific" regulator. They arn't actually aquarium specific, but something that a reliable aqurium company has hand chosen the parts for. This is basically the most important part of the system. It has to be accurate and reliable. There are a few options, I would search around the boards and pick your price point. This would include the regulator, needle valve, and solinoid in most cases. It may include a bubble counter as well. You can even get one that can be used on multiple tanks.



I have a generic regulator/needle valve and when it is setup, it is consistant. It is super hard to dial in and you can't go off of any settings on the regulator to hope to get the same results as the time before. People like to fiddle with mine for some reason when I am not in the room and it can take me weeks to get mine exactly where I want again.




Outside of that, everything is pretty generic. You can get a nice looking tank but you may find that local places don't actually fill your tank, they exchange it. You would be better off buying a used tank here, assuming that is the case, as you would trade your new tank for something that is most likely well worn.

You have a variety of ways to actually diffuse your co2. A good diffusor is very important but not hard to find at all.
 

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thanks for the list thatll help a bunch

any preferred parts?
I personally like dual stage regulators (Victor, Matheson, Concoa are all good brands), but a solid Cornelius single stage regulator will work also.

For needle valves, you can't go wrong with the Fabco NV55, Ideal or Swagelok.

As for the solenoid, most people go with the Clippard, the Burkert or the Parker (that has been appearing a lot on eBay as of late).
 
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