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Paintball CO2

Discussion in 'CO2 Enrichment' started by nerbaneth, Oct 14, 2008.

  1. nerbaneth

    nerbaneth Guest

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    Hi!,

    So I am a few steps away from having a tank that I am very pleased with. I only have 3 more things to make it match what my 'goals' are.

    I need a little more light: the light is already in the mail!
    I need to fix my substrate: I am in the process

    and the last thing I want to do is pressurized CO2 - but I am on a college student budget!

    The most I could spend would be $100 and that would only cover the tank! I have been reading about some systems that use paint ball tanks (which I could buy off my friend for $20!) and I could get a regulator for paintball tanks at the local fish store that is closing down (20% off everything in the store)

    I think I could afford this method, but would it be sufficient(last a good while before refill.. a month or two) for a 90 gal?

    Also, If I decided down the road to get a 5# or 10# CO2 tank.. would it fit on the paintball regulator? - or could I at least adapt it?

    The other option is to wait until Christmas or summer when I have a job and buy a decent setup like all you guys have.

    Thanks!,
    Nerb
     
  2. VaughnH

    VaughnH Lifetime Charter Member
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    You can also trade your time for $$, by carefully watching forum "for sale" ads and jumping quickly when you see a good deal on a CO2 system. I think you can do it for $100 if you work at it. Regulators and needle valves don't wear out during the amount of time and cycling we use them for. A used setup should work fine.
     
  3. nerbaneth

    nerbaneth Guest

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    I almost bought a setup off craigslist for $100 with a ph controller and an ada diffuser, bubble counter, and co2 drop checker.. I emailed the guy like 10 minutes after he posted it and it was gone :)
     
  4. Panda

    Panda Guru Class Expert

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    I used a paintball style CO2 system on my 90 g tank. It works but you will spend a lot of money refilling the tank about every 3 weeks. I think you should wait for a good price on a normal system. The regulator for the paintball system will not fit a 5,10 or 20 lb tank of CO2.
    Mine ended up on a 10g tank and bought another system...in the long run I ended paying a lot of money...:mad:
     
  5. nerbaneth

    nerbaneth Guest

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    12:55 AM
    Thanks panda.. I think that is exactly what I needed to know.
    What size was your paintball tank and how much did it cost to refill?

    Thanks,
    Nerb
     
  6. beastboi

    beastboi Junior Poster

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    with your budget i would diy co2 until you save up enough money to get a system, the paintball co2 isn't worth it for a 90gal. from what I’ve experience the paintball regulator will not fit a regular cylinder. gl :)
     
  7. Panda

    Panda Guru Class Expert

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    the bottle is 20 oz and cost around $5 to refill and the tanks cost around 25. So, for a 90 g tank you will be refilling around every 3 weeks. I also bought another 20 oz tank to reduce the trips to the gotcha shop.
    trust me, you will get tired of refilling so often!!
    in the long run a regular set up is a better choice for bigger aquariums.
     
  8. =ACID RAIN=

    =ACID RAIN= Junior Poster

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    For $100 I bought a 10lb tank with regulator, a new valve for the regulator and a smaller barb for standard airline. I just used my previously owned airline valve to keep backpressure on the line and regulate the bubble count. No need for a needle valve unless you want exact control.

    I set the regulator to ~5lbs PSI and it stays there. The CO2 comes out of an airstone and goes into my canister filter intake where it dissolves in the circulating water. I use an air pump with another airstone elsewhere in the tank to balance CO2/O2 levels for fish and plants. Takes a little fiddling, but it's becoming constant now. I'm only just getting it really balanced after having the tank going for 2 months. I just upgraded my lights today as well, so I expect a big explosion of plant growth soon :)

    You will need to spend 20 to get it filled or swapped, but only swap with bottles that won't be duds in a year, because those bottles last quite a while ;)
     
  9. SpeedEuphoria

    SpeedEuphoria Prolific Poster

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    Check you local phone book, look up fire extinguisher in the yellow pages. My local welding gas places wanted $110 for a full 5# tank and $130 for a full 10# tank. This fire extinguisher place wanted $53 out the door for full tanks between 10-15 lbs, so I obviously got the 15# full for $53.

    I got a Victor regulator off ebay for $50 and thats most of what you need.

    Personally if I was to use paintball CO2, I would buy a normal regulator and one of the adapters to use it, then if you want to buy a real CO2 tank in the future you dont have to rebuy the regulator. I think at that local place I could have gotten a 2.5lb CO2 tank for the price of a 20OZ paintball tank
     
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