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Old 03-18-2006, 07:39 PM   #1
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DIY CO2 takes forever

I just changed out my DIY CO2 and I have noticed a trend. It takes a good 24 hours after starting a new one before it builds enough pressure to start feeding my bell. Is there something I can do to speed this process up or is this the normal time frame for DIY CO2?

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Old 03-18-2006, 07:46 PM   #2
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That's a fairly normal time frame. One thing that you can try is to foam the yeast. Even if it doesn't get you a faster start it will help ensure that you get consistantly good starts.

What you do is fill a bowl with some tepid water and a tablespoon of sugar, then added your yeast. Let it sit for 30-60min and then add it to your bottle. This ensures that your yeast has a good start before being added to the bottle.

Something else that you can do is to run two bottles instead of one, and then change them out on alternating weeks. This way you always have some CO2 output at all times. Say if you are currently running a 2 Liter bottle, you could switch to two 1 Liter bottles.

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Old 03-18-2006, 08:16 PM   #3
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Well as soon as I get the bulkheads for the bottles, I will run 3 bottles, probably 1.5-2 liter so I have it in both of my 10 gallon tanks. Will set up a seperator at the same time. Is good my red melon sword still pearls, telling me it is still happy. Not as much pearling but it still pearls.

Will this cause a raise in the pH that can be harmful to the fish? I mean not having the CO2 running for 24 hours?

One other thing, what brand power head is the best to use for a power diffuser? It seems really easy to set up but the power heads I have all have a wide opening where the water sprays out making it almost impossible to use as a diffuser.
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Old 03-18-2006, 08:30 PM   #4
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What I used to do was pour out all but 1/8 of the bottle (so leave the bottom 1/4-1/8 full, do not shake and pour gently) add 3 cups of water and add more sugar, no yeast needed and it would start almost instantly.

The yeast is consuming the sugar, producing CO2 as it replicates. you are pouring out yeast to add new.. give it a shot and see what happens, worked well for me and saved me buying yeast all the time. in fact, I only ever used 1 tsp of yeast out of a three pack.

Life Cycle of Brewers Yeast:
1. Respiration - Also known as lag time. In this stage, the yeast is reproducing to reach critical mass, which then leads to the second stage, fermentation. You want to minimize the time the yeast spends in this stage because you want the yeast to start alcohol fermentation as soon as possible to prevent invasion and spoilage from bacteria or wild yeasts. This is why proper sanitation and pitching healthy brewers yeast or a yeast starter is essential.

2. Fermentation - In this stage, the yeast is actively consuming the sugars in the wort, turning them into CO2 and alcohol.

3. Sedimentation - The yeast enter this stage once the sugar level starts to drop. The yeast drop out of solution and become dormant, flocculating (dropping out) to the bottom of your fermenter or bottle forming sediment. Again, the yeast go dormant, they do not die. If additional sugars are added the yeast will go full-throttle again.

- Quote above from http://www.homebrewzone.com/beer_yeast.htm

I replace the alcohol with fresh water because I'm not trying to make pure alcohol.. tho you could, and probably have a great party..
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Old 03-18-2006, 09:08 PM   #5
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Great idea, just make sure to remind those that try this that it can foam like a rabid dog and run everywhere. I tired this with an almos full bottle and it erupted, almost litterally. This will work well for when I am ready to switch to the smaller bottles. Just take the remnants from the 3 liter and ditribute it into the new smaller ones. Maybe this should be added to the sticky so new comers who want to DIY CO2 have a reliable way to seed new bottles and keep the CO2 at regular levels.
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co2, diy, diy co2

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