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RE: CO2 Atomizers and CO2 Visual Tests

Harvey is wondering about the pressure required to operate a CO2 atomizer
(like the Dupla, Eheim, or ADA units) -

>Could you give us an estimate of how many PSI are required?

Christopher Coleman would probably be better at this than I would be, or
possibly Dave Gomberg - but I would guess that you would need approximately
15 psi to get a good flow of CO2 through one of these units. Just like what
you would expect from a pressurized gas system.

He's also wondering about souping up a Yeast Reactor to increase the
pressure -

>It is
>possible that DIY CO2 would work with an assist from an air pump. This
>would require a rigid wall bottle so that the brew doesn't get sucked
>into the tank. A higher tech approach ( to satisfy our techie urges)
>would be to use a pressure sensor to sense the reduction in bottle
>pressure. This way we would know when to run the pump, and when to
>change the brew.
>Even if the air pump needs rebuilding periodically the cost  of
>ownership would be considerably lower than a full CO2 rig.

Consider for a moment, if you will, the cost of repainting your living room,
steam cleaning your carpets and upholstered furniture. Should a Yeast Method
soda bottle explode due to your attempt to increase the internal pressure I
wouldn't want to be the one responsible for cleaning up the mess. Go check
out that in the archives.

If you have "techie urges", get yourself a cheap gravel washer, the kind
with a big open ended tube. Attach two suction cups to the side of the tube
and epoxy or somehow attach a circle of open mesh plastic needlepoint canvas
to the open end. Cut the hose which is attached to the fitting on the other
end shorter, just long enough to reach to the output of a power head. Fill
the tube with mini bio-balls, reattach the top, and place the input airline
tube from your Yeast Method CO2 reactor into the bottom of the tube (thread
it through the plastic screen). Put the whole thing in your tank, attaching
it via the suction cups to the glass, and turn on your power head. The power
head will push water from your tank into the device, where it will flow
over, around and through the bioballs. The CO2 gas, introduced into the
bottom will rise against this current and dissolve into your water. Very
efficient, very safe, and it WILL work with Yeast Method CO2 just fine.
Without increasing the danger of your pop bottle blowing up.

Kew thinks that the ADA CO2 visual test is cool too -

>I guess the best deal (albeit expensive),is ADA's "teardrop" unit. Just
>fill up with your tank water,add the solution and over turn!! ;-)

Re-read my original post - the ADA "Drop Checker" is certainly beautiful and
very elegant, I don't think that we'd expect anything any less from an Amano
product. But just because it is pretty doesn't meant that it is well
designed. The most important thing about these devices is that they be easy
to read. The ADA unit is totally transparent. Most plant tanks have dark
backgrounds. The ability to discern the colour changes produced in the
indicator fluid of the ADA unit by varying levels of CO2 in the water is
"iffy" at best, at least to my aging eyes. I much prefer the Dupla unit,
even though it is plastic - the base of the unit is white in colour and the
color of the indicator fluid inside is easy to judge regardless of the
background color of the tank.


And finally, Bob Dixon has another option for CO2 diffusion -

>variation of this idea would be to place an inverted saucer on the bottom
>the tank and introduce the CO2 there, trapping it until it was dissolved.

Mmmmm, what would happen if my elderly aunt dropped by for tea? She won't
use a mug, always insists on a cup and saucer. This would mean that I'd have
to go rooting around in the aquarium for her saucer every time she came to
visit. My plants would surely start to resent her, especially if she wanted
a second cuppa.....


James Purchase