The Planted Tank Forum banner
1 - 19 of 19 Posts

·
ShrimpRetirement
Joined
·
8,313 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Alright guys, here's my dilemma: I'm planning to go out of town for 3 days/2 nights this weekend since we all know, it's Labor day weekend :icon_mrgr. I've done it in the past with leaving everything off except the filter (pretty much a blackout period to kill algae hehe). That didn't turn out too well for my 10g which had more demanding plants such as HC and Limno Guinea 'broadleaf'. They all died pretty much.

I don't want to risk it again so I now have a light timer that's set to 8hrs of light. Here are my options that I came up with: Let me know which option you guys think would be the best for what I have:

1. Leave CO2 on 24/7 with lights on 8hr timer
2. Leave CO2 off with lights on 8hr timer
3. Leave everything OFF for the entire 3 days to kill some thread algae :hihi:

Please share your opinions/expertise. I know, I really need to get me a solenoid.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
655 Posts
I think the best option is #2 i . I would not take the chance of killing all of your fish by giving them more co2 than they can handle by leaving the co2 on the whole time. Your plants will be ok without co2 for a couple days. If #3 did work the first time then i would not try it again and push your luck, but i dont see why your plants would not be ok without lights for 3 days... I have done it to mine several times back when i was fighting algae and i had some harder to grow plants.
 

·
Children Boogie
Joined
·
16,743 Posts
gah, a solenoid would solve your problem. CO2 & lights on the timer.

yeah, #2 is the way to go.. you might want to do 5-7 hours of light. Nothing will grow. But nothing will die as well. If you have Excel, throw some in before you leave, couldn't hurt.
 

·
ShrimpRetirement
Joined
·
8,313 Posts
Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I think the best option is #2 i . I would not take the chance of killing all of your fish by giving them more co2 than they can handle by leaving the co2 on the whole time. Your plants will be ok without co2 for a couple days. If #3 did work the first time then i would not try it again and push your luck, but i dont see why your plants would not be ok without lights for 3 days... I have done it to mine several times back when i was fighting algae and i had some harder to grow plants.
Yeah... Option 2 seems decent, but what about algae? That would mean algae would have a nice 3 day growout time to show it's ugly head, since there's no CO2 to keep it dormant.

Option 3 is what I'm leaning towards the most. I just found it hard to believe my last vacation (4days), my 10g crashed with this option.
 

·
ShrimpRetirement
Joined
·
8,313 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
gah, a solenoid would solve your problem. CO2 & lights on the timer.

yeah, #2 is the way to go.. you might want to do 5-7 hours of light. Nothing will grow. But nothing will die as well. If you have Excel, throw some in before you leave, couldn't hurt.
Good point mg.

This could be a good option to consider. Thank you sir!

I'm still working my wallet to grow big enough to get me a solenoid. Too bad it doesn't grow as fast as my plants.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,742 Posts
Why wouldn't you run co2 at 1 or 2 bubbles a second 24/7? I run co2 24/7 at 3 bbps in a 46 gallon, done so for at least 2 years, never lost a fish, never have seen them gasp either. I have surface rippling enough to break up surface scum. My drop checker is yellow green. I've gone on 10 day vacations without losing any fish. I would try the 24/7 routine a few days before you go, so you feel comfortable with it though.
 

·
ShrimpRetirement
Joined
·
8,313 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Why wouldn't you run co2 at 1 or 2 bubbles a second 24/7? I run co2 24/7 at 3 bbps in a 46 gallon, done so for at least 2 years, never lost a fish, never have seen them gasp either. I have surface rippling enough to break up surface scum. My drop checker is yellow green. I've gone on 10 day vacations without losing any fish. I would try the 24/7 routine a few days before you go, so you feel comfortable with it though.
That's a good option as well. :proud: I'll try it out today.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
386 Posts
I do not have a solenoid switch on my tanks eversince and my c02 is on 24/7 with no problems. Just try to lower it down a mere minimum. I go on vacation for a week with no problems. You should be alright.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
12,014 Posts
gah, a solenoid would solve your problem. CO2 & lights on the timer.
I agree with this. A decent solenoid is only ~$20, so it shouldn't be too hard on your wallet.

As for your options, as hbosman and 4f1hmi suggested, the best way to go is to just crank your CO2 down to minimal levels and having it on 24/7 while leaving your lights as they are.
 

·
ShrimpRetirement
Joined
·
8,313 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I agree with this. A decent solenoid is only ~$20, so it shouldn't be too hard on your wallet.

As for your options, as hbosman and 4f1hmi suggested, the best way to go is to just crank your CO2 down to minimal levels and having it on 24/7 while leaving your lights as they are.
Thanks guys, all good suggestions.

Where can I find a decent solenoid for 20 bucks? Do tell. I'll buy it in a heartbeat.
 

·
Banned
Joined
·
5,009 Posts
Thanks guys, all good suggestions.

Where can I find a decent solenoid for 20 bucks? Do tell. I'll buy it in a heartbeat.
Solenoid (You will need to purchase a grounded power cord separately)
1/8" FPT: Part # MME-2PDS-D110 - $19.70 ea.
http://www.clippard.com/store/display_details.asp?sku=MME-2PDS-D110

I'm pretty close. :)

You can probably get the Clippard solenoid above from Rex, SuMo or GLA for around $40 including shipping and with the power cord.

Some of the people that bought the Parker solenoids recently may part with one.
 

·
Children Boogie
Joined
·
16,743 Posts
here's a great thread on clippard parts.. You'll need needle valves and check valves too.
http://www.plantedtank.net/forums/equipment/61330-list-important-clippard-part-numbers.html

It's probably too late for the labor day weekend but for the future. Shipping and handling is a bit steep and will take a week or so. They're from my home town too (5 miles away from where I live)... But if I don't want the shipping and handling, I'd have to go to their distributor which is 25 miles away.

ps. the clippard solenoid gets a bit hot.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
12,014 Posts
Here is an even better deal than Left C posted ;)

eBay item number: 300343760219

It is the Parker solenoid that Left C was talking about. Several users including myself use this solenoid. I believe one person had a problem, but after negotiating with the seller, he was willing to replace the solenoid.

The Parker solenoid doesn't come with a power cord, but you can easily find one from some spare electronic that you don't need (I used an old hair dryer cord). You also need some connectors (of which the name escapes me at this time), but a picture is worth a thousand words (credit goes to krtismo for the pictures)

http://www.plantedtank.net/forums/equipment/83070-where-can-i-get-cheap-replacement.html#post797597
 

·
ShrimpRetirement
Joined
·
8,313 Posts
Discussion Starter · #15 ·
So basically It'll cost me around $100 for everything shipped?

I know Rex is still alive but no longer active on this forum so that being said, can I just buy the already put together Clippard w/ power cord from Rex and use my current needle valve that came with my M3 regulator?

This is how my regulator & needle valve looks:


Or do I have to buy a whole new regulator and parts to obtain the solenoid function?
 

·
ShrimpRetirement
Joined
·
8,313 Posts
Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Here is an even better deal than Left C posted ;)

eBay item number: 300343760219

It is the Parker solenoid that Left C was talking about. Several users including myself use this solenoid. I believe one person had a problem, but after negotiating with the seller, he was willing to replace the solenoid.

The Parker solenoid doesn't come with a power cord, but you can easily find one from some spare electronic that you don't need (I used an old hair dryer cord). You also need some connectors (of which the name escapes me at this time), but a picture is worth a thousand words (credit goes to krtismo for the pictures)

http://www.plantedtank.net/forums/equipment/83070-where-can-i-get-cheap-replacement.html#post797597
Thanks for that link... those pictures are worth a million bucks. I'm a visual learner so that helps alot.

Now with this solenoid, same question as well... will my current regulator work with it?
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
12,014 Posts
So basically It'll cost me around $100 for everything shipped?
That is only if you are in the market for a new regulator, needle valve and solenoid. If you are only looking for a solenoid, the Parker on eBay will work fine.

I have read reports that the M3 needle valve is not the best, so you might want to consider upgrading that while you take apart your regulator to install the solenoid (which would go between the regulator and the needle valve).

I know Rex is still alive but no longer active on this forum so that being said, can I just buy the already put together Clippard w/ power cord from Rex and use my current needle valve that came with my M3 regulator?
Absolutely. It'll cost a little more, and take longer, but if you feel uncomfortable with your DIY skills and then plugging it into 120VAC (;)), then this is the safest way to go.

I am not sure of the orifice size of the M3 regulator; I would assume it is 1/8" (female). The Clippard that Rex sells as well as the Parker on eBay also uses 1/8" (female). As a result, to connect them, you will need a 1/8" male nipple.

Depending on the size of your needle valve, you may or may not need adapters.

Or do I have to buy a whole new regulator and parts to obtain the solenoid function?
No, as mentioned, you can take apart the regulator you currently have and install the solenoid between the regulator and the needle valve.

Now with this solenoid, same question as well... will my current regulator work with it?
As mentioned above, either the Parker or the Clippard will work. If the orifice size on your regulator is not 1/8", then it is just an additional matter of finding the right sized adapter from your hardware store.

The Clippard gets quite hot (almost too hot to touch) during operation, but it has a nice red LED to indicate it is open and allowing CO2 to flow. The Parker does not run as hot, but does not have the LED feature. It is cheaper, however ;)

And I finally remembered that the connectors are called "spade connectors"
 

·
ShrimpRetirement
Joined
·
8,313 Posts
Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Dark,

Thanks for all your help. I think I'll read up some more on the links you guys provided and make my decision after that. I just want to make sure I have all the nessisary parts on hand before I attempt to even take apart my regulator. Last thing I want to do is become CO2less for an extended amount of time.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
499 Posts
For the weekend I would go with the option #1 and a timer with an air pump like suggested. I did that for a while and it worked perfectly. My drop checker would be blue when the air pump was on and green when it was off.
 
1 - 19 of 19 Posts
Top