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Old 04-21-2007, 06:44 AM   #1
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Milwaukee PH Controller

I bought the controller and set it up to just measure the PH. As soon as I find a place to fill the Co2 tank, I'll be connecting it to the solenoid. My question is how to set the dial on the controller and how that works with the alarm.

What I'm seeing is that the alarm goes off as the PH rises ABOVE what you select. So, that tells me the solenoid gets turned on, Co2 released and the then when the PH reaches below that point, the solenoid is turned off. The odd thing I'm getting from this is that the Co2 is being released while the alarm is on. Do I have this correct?
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Old 04-21-2007, 08:52 AM   #2
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To set the dial takes some patience. What I did was hooked it all up, got the current PH reading. Turned the dial all the way counter clockwise (low), Turned on the Co2 and waited for the PH to drop to what I wanted. I then slowly (it's sensitive) increased the dial until the alarm shut off (And Co2 stops).. From that point on, it kept my PH within .2 of where I wanted it.

The Alarm light flashes when Co2 is running.

Also, make sure you calibrate the meter. (there is a hidden adjustment on the back for the slope.) I used White Vinegar (PH 2.8) and a PH 7.01 package.

Use the 7 mixture to set the front calibration to 7, then put the probe into the vinegar and use the one on the back to adjust it to 2.8, then back to the 7 and re-adjust it again, and back and forth until it's correct for both without adjustment.
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Old 04-21-2007, 09:06 AM   #3
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The manufacturers instructions say not to use the 4.0 solution that they provide. Just the 7.01...
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Old 04-21-2007, 12:55 PM   #4
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So this isn't on page 2 of the manual?

Code:
CALIBRATION PROCEDURE:
• Remove the protective cap from the electrode.
• Immerse the electrode tip into a new sachet of pH 7
calibration solution and allow the reading to stabilize.
• Adjust the OFFSET calibration trimmer (on the front)
to display "7.0 pH".
• Open a new sachet of pH 4 calibration solution and
use a small quantity to rinse the electrode.
• Immerse the electrode tip into the pH 4 sachet and
allow the reading to stabilize.
• Adjust the SLOPE calibration trimmer (on the rear)
to display "4.0 pH".
• The calibration is now complete and the meter is
ready to take measurements.
• It is suggested to recalibrate the meter at least
once a month, after a prolonged stocking time
and after pH-electrode replacement.
That is taken from the manual on their website.

I just recommend doing it a couple of times and use white vinegar instead of 4.0 (it's value is 2.8 which is a more precise slope)
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Old 04-21-2007, 12:58 PM   #5
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it is, but they included a small sheet of paper that says it's no longer neccesary to use the 4.0 solution for calbration
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Old 04-21-2007, 01:26 PM   #6
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That sheet is there for measurements within 5.5-9 however, there is a 2 point procedure for accuracy which should be encouraged. In either case it may work with a single point, but I would not trust the readings it will get..

Think of PH as a triangle. You know the peak is at 7', but that is all you know. How tall is the triangle @ 5' to the left of the peak? Without the second point of reference, you really can't tell, you can estimate, but that's not really that accurate..

If I told you the Triangle was 7' high, and @ 10' it's 2.8. You can calculate that @ 5' it is

7-2.8 = 4.2/10' = .42/foot (this is the slope) so 7' - (.42 x 5') = 4.9'

This is why setting the slope is important to making sure the reading is correct. (.2 or .3 is a huge difference in Co2 levels)..

Going through the trouble of buying precision equipment, just to leave it inaccurate is kinda pointless.. Mine also included that sheet, and I tossed it out.. When I did the first run, it was off on the slope by 1.6PH.. this affected my ph reading by .3-.4
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Old 04-22-2007, 01:48 AM   #7
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In the past.. most PH controllers were used for SW applcations.. high PH.. so they would assume thats what everyone needs it for and write the included instructions accordingly.

CA reators and such.
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Old 04-23-2007, 01:28 AM   #8
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personally these days I use my controller just as a way to spot check.. I use a co2 drop checker for co2 control and a solenoid on a timer to shut the whole thing off at night. I've become convinced by teh crowd chanting that co2 at night only stresses fish and does no good.

Have you read any of the threads on drop checkers?
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Old 04-23-2007, 10:00 AM   #9
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Prettyfish - Calibrating the meter should be pretty easy. Then set it to the pH you would like to maintain. Whenever the pH starts to creep up past that point, the "alarm" will flash and CO2 will be added to drive the pH back down.

If you want to turn it off at night, just add a timer to the setup before the pH meter plug. A Drop checker is a nice visual double-check and will let you quickly realize your CO2 is empty, etc. Perhaps once you feel comfortable with your current setup, start looking into that.

I am now running my CO2 24/7 again after a few months turning it off at night. I don't see much of a difference either way.
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