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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Well, I am not interested in being tied to a daily schedule of ferts... so I finally got into the autodosing realm. Once again, I wanted everything plumed inline, which I have seen others have issues with... I am hoping that keeping it undercomplicated and actually OVER diluted will help things out.

I purchased 3 of these pumps from ebay. Total of $59 after shipping. with new 3/16 tubing! Had no idea if they would work... but went out on a limb. these are industrial dishwasher pumps. No crappy plastic parts here. I think I could run it over and it would still work. Not exactly kidding...


I went to walmart and purchased 3 7 day timers and set it to dose as per the EI schedules. KNO3 M-W-F /Fleet M-W-F /Flourish T-T-S, each for one minute. Then I mounted it all on a board that I havent figured out how to hang in my tank yet... because the pumps are REALLY heavy....


I have figured out the dosing amount which is very high compared to what most people use here, but I am wondering if it might perhaps work in our favor? has anyone tried it?? 1 minute on these pumps = 65ml. This is wicked high. I also found that something overheats quickly... When I was trying to figure the dosing accuracy, the pumps would shut off and not turn back on after 4 minutes give or take. Let them cool, and they would work again. I think this might be some overload of the walmart timer? I dont think there is any overload protection in the pump, so there must be a breaker in the timer.. I must be pushing the timers. Think 1 minute every other day will keep it happy?

This is all plumed inline right after the output of my 2217 using a T connector. I had to fudge it a bit, because I was way to impatient to get a 1/2-1/2-3/16 T in the mail...so its hotglued together...*cough* Anyone know a better way to get inline????


I currently have 600ml of plain water 3 containers under the tank. I am going to wait for 8 dose cycles to complete, and I will check the level of each container. I am expecting/hoping for 80ml left in each bottle. which will mean my dosing is accurate, there is no drip back, no need for check valve, blah blah blah.

Update later when I have more info! as it stands, I believe I have a fully automated, highly adjustable, dosing system for a healthy bit under $100.
 

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A better way to get it inline could be making something like a DIY CO2 reactor with pvc. Instead of one drilling one hole for the CO2 inlet, you would drill 3. It will work better than the T connections that you have right now. You could also add liquid check valves.

ps. Judging from the hole in the stand you dont have much patience, :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
its all 120v.

As to my hack hole...well yea, it was a bad day....I decided to get the job done.......I plan on covering that at some point...once the filter is plumed straight up w/ bulkheads...*cough*...The idea is getting everything perfect...eventually...:icon_mrgr which is why the pump board looks so nice.

I'm planning for an eventual custom 75 gal on the stand, so I'm trying to keep it in mind when making/placing equipment.

I already have a rex reactor on the other side of the stand...just kind of hesitated to drill holes into it w/o knowing if it would work...(see? not TO hasty! :D)
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
well I have the board hung now. 1 of my control bottles is garbage now. I apparently screwed up the timer schedule and didnt have a shut off for friday on it... Thats what this test is for though huh? In anycase, it dumped into the tank, so I cant check the level lol. 2 others though, that should be enough honestly, the pumps are all the same.

I am having a leaking issue though. it is just a slow drip, but the tubing from the pump to the output of the canister is leaking at the junction on the pumps. all three. I'm guessing this is because I have no check valves? I cant find any tubing clamps the right size to help with it. zip ties did nothing. I am surprised its leaking actually, as it was rather tight to put it on by hand. Its just 3/16 line from home depot.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
something was obviously going on with the timers, as they were the only possible thing that could 'cool down' and then start working again, as the problem seemed to be.

In actuality, the pumps do get hot after 4 minutes of running. These were designed for dishwashers, where they shut off usually after 5-10 revolutions, not made for 1 minute runs.

Perhaps its related, perhaps not. Im usually home when the pumps are going to be running, which means I will notice if they dont work.

Getting anxious to check the fluid levels and see how accurate the dosages are!!! at 65ml a dosage though, 1-2 ml in either direction really is inside the margin of error.....
 

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Timers are not going to have any type of thermal protection nor do they need to. They are nothing more then a switched gateway. Those pumps are thermal protected and are not designed for anything more than short burst injection. Running them any longer then their intended use will result in an overload and they will shut down. The third pic from the Ebay source shows on the label of the pump that they are a thermally protected pump.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
ouch. Didnt exactly expect this. 1 minute should be ok long term yes? it takes approx 4 1/2 minutes to overheat and shutdown. Anything less then that should be fine, and cause no issue. (the built in circuit breaker being the fail safe, as long as it doesnt go off, im fine?)
 

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Its hard to say at what time frame will cause damage to the pump. If it takes 4.5 minutes to overheat than 1 minute should be fine Remember the thermal protection in the pump is to protect the pump and to meet UL standards for fire safety. Pumps have the ability without thermal protection to reach very high temperatures and possibly cause a fire, hence the thermal protection. Obviously you can't give any guarantee's to the longevity of the pump or the absolute safety of the pump in its DIY enviornment. Just be wary of fire and electric shock with anything DIY in this hobby and use common sense. And when in doubt.... throw it out.
 

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That is some gheto plumbing job you got there. I would have just hung it over the side of the tank until you had the proper fitting. That thing just screams LEAK.

ou have referred to overheating. Are you SURE its over heating? what evidence is there that this is the case or are you just assuming its overheating??? Have you run the pumps without the timer just to see if the problem persists? How about plugging the timer into a lamp or something to try it that way and see if the timer trips off.

Did you check the load rating of the pumps? Is it possible that the amperage draw of the timers exceeds the timers relay?
 

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Timers are typically over built and can easily handle a pump that has an ampage draw of 1.75 amps, that 1.75 amps is clearly listed on the pumps label right above THERMALLY PROTECTED. You can look at the back of the timer for the load ratings. I'd be shocked if it was anything less than 8 amps 900w resistive/inductive, even your really cheap pin type lamp timer should be that minimum. Some will even give a max hp rating. But still timers do not have thermal protection, your just going to fry the timers lead, and probably trip the house breaker. Everything that has been posted clearly indicates the thermal protection in the pump is being tripped. Pump runs to hot, thermal protection kicks in and shuts down pump, 4.5 minutes pass, pump cools down, is now functional again.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
well, they have been running fine for 2 weeks on water. Measured the water after 2 weeks, and discovered that I was around .5 ml off on my first measurement of 65 ml. its a bit closer to 66... but .5 ml is way within the margin of error when we are talking about 65-66 ml as a daily dose.

Decided to try the checkvalved cap method for keeping the ferts from going bad instead of using excel. I mixxed up 5 weeks of ferts using less then a gallon of distilled water (at less then $2 a gallon, I can handle that once a month) , and neatened up the setup. I'm very happy with it.

Fully programable 3 pump Peristaltic Autodosing set up for a healthy bit under $100. I'm happy as a clam. I watched his other pumps on ebay. no one here bit on them, I was pretty surprised.

 

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i hate to bring this back from the dead, but perhaps a bump to get some other people thinking about this type of setup. i think its awesome!!! great job... i am about to hit buy on a set of these pumps to automate my EI dosing regime.
 

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There's a sticky in the ferts forum about building this type, and other types of autodosing set ups. I'm going to build a peristaltic set up when I get the time. I routinely get called out for several days without notice, and need some way to have dosing automated.
 
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