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I'm not sure where you get your cost info.  The Rapids catalog, www.4rapid1.com, has the Norgren regulator (my personal favorite) with two gauges (and a Carbon Dioxide Cylinder Connector) for $65.95.  The various fittings from Home Depot should only be a couple of $$.

The fitting you use between the regulator and the needle valve is called a nipple.  You will need to remove the 3/8-inch valve/barb from the regulator first of course.

I agree that the ARO valves, which I use BTW, are not very good for our application but the Nupro valves are way overkill.  Also the F01 is not a needle valve so that could be part of your problem.  The correct model is N01.  If you can find the Clippards for $25 or so you should be able to build a respectable system for less than a hundred bucks.

Lyndle Schenck

I've been doing my research on adding compressed CO2 to my planted tank. 
I am currently using sugar-yeast on my 25g, but i'm not always around to 
  change the solution out and since i'm moving to a 75g, I figured it 
was time to move up to compressed CO2. I'm trying to decide between 2 

Less Expensive System:
53.95               KegWorks Beer Regulator
14.91               ARO FO1 Needle Valve
$68.86 Total

More Expensive System
47.60  B-SS4        Swagelok Nupro S Needle Valve
   .50  B-405-3      Brass Insert for Tubing, 1/4"OD - 3/16" ID
40.65  R83-200-RNEA Norgren Regulator
  6.00  18-008-002   Carbon Dioxide Cylinder Connector
18.35  18-013-244   2000psig Gauge
  9.15  18-013-083   60psig gauge
  7.45  16-009-001   1/4" PTF male to 1/4" tube
$129.70 Total

Will the less expensive setup work? Or should i spring for the Nupro S 
needle valve and Norgren regulator?  Any other suggestions?

Thanks for everybody's help on this.


PS: I haven't quite figured out what fitting I need between the 
regulator and needle valve in either setup.