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Re: M3 & Clippard valves & things that change temp in the night

Mary Alice Kropp quoted Chcuck Gadd and then commented:

> From Chuck Gadd:
> >I'm interested in hearing what's wrong with the M3 valve.  I've
> >been using one for a few years now, connected to the regulator
> >I got from Dave.   They two play perfectly together, and I get
> >very nice and precise control of the bubble rate.
> Is that a Cliipard valve? Because I've got one, also from M3, and it
> frustrates the heck out of me. Every time it needs adjusting (for
> example,
> when I need to change the CO2 canister, it gets all out of whack), it
> seems
> to take days to get it readjusted. Granted, we rigged up our own
> bubble
> counter rather than purchase one, but a bubble is a bubble, right?
> Any hints
> on what I may be doing wrong? (Other than obsessing, because both
> plants and
> fish seem to be doing just fine, despite my best efforts to thwart
> that!
> <G>)
> - -Mak

One thing that can make it hard to fine tune you CO2, I think, is the
check valve.  Usually, it takes more pressure to open these than to
keep them open.  Also, I suspect that some check valve, even expensive
ones, vary with temperature (the diaphragm is stiffer when colder). 
Other elements in a CO2 system vary with changing room temps also --
e.g., CO2 tank pressure changes with tank temperature -- not much but
we're dealing with trickle flows of CO2.  The regulator is essentially
just a spring-loaded valve, so if high side pressure changes with
ambient temperature, so can the low pressure coming out of the
regulator. All of which makes it hard to set your valve for a precise
result.  I find it very frustrating to try to be very precise on some
setups, even with very expensive, high quality valves and regulators.  
Of course, once I stop trying to be so precise, I am happier -- almost
as if I just donated to the fund ;-) .

Scott H.

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