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Old 07-17-2007, 04:41 PM   #1
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DIY CO2 or Pressurized?

OK, so I think I need (want) to go all out on the new 46 gal and do CO2. I am inexperienced with it but have been reading the stickies etc.

My question is....what are your recommendations based on your experience? This tank will eventually be a home to discus so I want to have it consistent and not have the ph bouncing around. Although, I suppose that would be bad for any fish.

My KH is 8, GH is 11 so from what I have read that is a good reading for buffering capacity....am I understanding that correctly?

So has anyone had good exp with DIY? Or do you usually just end up going pressurized and wonder why you waited so long?

And what are the best sources for pressurized eqp?

edit--anyone ever see one of these? I am interested in a review if so
http://www.aquariumguys.com/carboplus.html

Thanks!
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Old 07-17-2007, 06:48 PM   #2
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I've done DIY and I now have pressurized. Pressurized lets me get much higher levels of CO2 with a lot less hassle. I recommend it. I bought my regulator and tank off ebay, put my diffuser together myself and got the tank filled at the local welding shop.
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Old 07-17-2007, 06:58 PM   #3
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If you can afford to do so I would recommend getting pressurized for sure. Much easier to work with, easier to regulate and also keeps CO2 levels constant which can be the most important thing when it comes to plants growth and algae inhibiting. I used DIY and it worked great for growth but the levels were never constant and I got BBA because of it. I had never had it before I tried DIY.
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Old 07-18-2007, 12:09 PM   #4
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Definately go with Pressurized CO2 if you can afford it. Especially on larger tanks like you'll probably be using with Discus, it will save you a lot of headaches.

Don't, I repeat, don't even think about the Carbo Plus system. It's about the same initial investment as a pressurized system, but much more expensive to maintain. Further it works by breaking down the KH in your tank and therefore will either be changing your water parameters or won't work at all depending on the tanks current KH. Just not worth the expense and hastle.
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Old 07-18-2007, 12:33 PM   #5
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Thanks for the recommendation on the Carbo Plus. I have been considering it but have read many reviews and most of them have been limited long term success at best. It does appear to be just as expensive and long term far more expensive. I totally agree with you.

Any idea how long a 5 lb tank would last on 46 gal? Trying to decide which one would fit in the cabinet under my tank.

THanks!
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Old 07-23-2007, 12:49 PM   #6
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A lot will depend on your particular setup. I've got a 5lb cylinder feeding three aquariums (2.5 gal, 5.5 gal, and 10 gal) running 24/7 and it lasted 6 months. I suspect that using a single cylinder on multiple tanks tends to run through the CO2 faster, but I don't know for sure. If you were to either only run your CO2 during the day or to use a PH Controller, then the cylindar would last even longer.

Get the largest one that will fit in your cabinet, taking into consideration the height of your regulator. The cost difference isn't that great for initial purchase or refills, so the larger cylinder is definately going to be more cost effective.
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