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Reactor plumbing and pumps

Discussion in 'CO2 Enrichment' started by fjf888, Jul 20, 2009.

  1. fjf888

    fjf888 Guru Class Expert

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    I started tinkering with my setup that I have had for two years almost. 72G with a sump with two pumps. My original setup is the Barr Reactor, with a 300 gph wonbrothers pump in to the reactor , the outflow of the reactor fed into the impeller of my mag 5 pump which feeds then to the tank.

    I am an idiot when it comes to plumbing, but I thought I would run the CO2 into the 300gph pump pre impeller then into the reactor and out of the reactor to a 3/4 tee with the mag5 feeding into the tee as well. I was not impressed with the flow into the tank. The primary objective of this was to improve the flow into the tank and to use CO2 more efficiently. I go through a 5 lb tank every 5 weeks.

    Would it be better simply to run the 300gph pump inline, which I think I can do. Any other suggestions would be helpful.

    Thanks

    Fred
     
  2. Gerryd

    Gerryd Plant Guru Team
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    Hi Fred,

    How about any of the following options:

    1. Run the reactor and main sump outlet lines SEPARATE back to the tank. Do not merge the flows. This means one more line in the tank but is offset by better positioning of two outlets.

    2. Discard the reactor and run a needle wheel or DIY mod from the sump back to the tank. A 300-500 gph will chop the c02 nicely and provide a nice current to the tank. I tried a DIY on a mag 500 and it sorta worked, but I most likely did not do it correctly :)

    3. Get some loc-line outlets and configure your outlet flow optimally.

    Something is not right with 5 lbs in 5 weeks.

    Please describe more of your /inlet/outlet/sump config?

    How is the water level in the wier? More than an 1" will offgas c02.....Is the sump sealed? Wet/dry sumps will offgas c02 as well.

    Hope this helps.
     
  3. fjf888

    fjf888 Guru Class Expert

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    Gerry

    Thanks for the reply. As I was travelling and could not mess with the plumbing I did a quick and dirty mod of a rio 800 powerhead running a CO2 line into the impeller with the snips, took about 15 mins, it seems to be working at least as effectively as the reactor, but a bit noisy. I turned the bubble rate down a good bit and still seem to be getting sufficient CO2 based on the growth I am seeing. If this was a more quiet option I would probably go with it. I get good misting and improved flow.

    I have a "mega flow" reef ready 72G tank. I have flex pvc into the sump. In the sump I had two pumps. A mag 5 and a won300, which is a 300 gph pump. The won 300 pump was attached to the reactor, I fed the outflow of the reactor into the impeller of the mag 5. The outflow of the mag 5 feeds back to the tank. This works but uses a lot of CO2. You advised some on this way back.

    This is basically an out of the box setup, with the exception of the reactor and the second pump attached to the reactor. I seal the sump with black plastic and some tape.

    I now realize the tee was a stupid idea and clearly would slow down flow.

    Due to my limited plumbing skills, I am not sure what a wier is. I googled and determined that it might be the outflow box or the entire distance between the water out of the tank and into the sump. Here is a pic of what I believe my setup is pReviews_Image.jpg picture by fjf888 - Photobucket


    I think I am going to go with #2 and loc lines. Another problem I seem to have is a tough time getting CO2 to the far left corner to the left of the overflow I can't get any stem plant to get much height in that section of the tank. Not coincentally, I believe the plants in the heart of the outlet flow grow most quickly, so #3 make sense. Attached is the pic of return into the tank

    IMG_2396.jpg picture by fjf888 - Photobucket

    Thanks Gerry
     
  4. Biollante

    Biollante Lifetime Charter Member
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  5. Gerryd

    Gerryd Plant Guru Team
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    Hi Fred,

    Yes I meant the overflow box and the 'fence' as it were.

    If the water passing through the fence or grill has more than 1" before it hits the water in the overflow box, it could cause c02 loss.

    You can change the intake pipe in the box to be a Durso or other type that will allow the water in the box to be HIGHER and so less waterfall distance, less noise and less c02 loss.

    The loc-line has helped many folk and is a great tool!

    Please note that I got MUCH improved flow from my setup when I STOPPED merging lines as much. I had it where 3 compnents (mech, bio, c02) were merged to 1 single merged line which then split to 2 outlets. I simply added a second outlet after the merge so that each outlet was fed from the 3 merged lines directly, rather than being constricted and merged.

    The PSI on my guages plummeted after doing this and my flow visibly increased.

    Just some support for multiple outlets. Looks uglier I agree but can be hidden....

    Adding ball/throttle valves at input and outlet lines are always good to have as well.......Just a thought....

    Biollante,

    You have helped others, no need for an excuse to compliment someone else :)

    I agree that it is a nice tank....


    Hope this helps.
     
  6. fjf888

    fjf888 Guru Class Expert

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    Appreciate the kind words Gerry and Biollante.

    Will let you guys know how things work out, I am definitely doing the two line approach as you suggest, in the meantime the powerhead mod is working quite well.

    Right now have been so busy I have stem plants growing out the sides of my tank and burning up against the light fixture. I need a lower maintenance tank :)
     
  7. Biollante

    Biollante Lifetime Charter Member
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    HEEhehehe...

    ain't it great!!:eek:

    Biollante
     
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