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Old 11-21-2006, 08:06 PM   #101 (permalink)
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Here is a simple way to DIY this, using clear acrylic tube in 1 inch diameter and 1/2 inch diameter, plus two acrylic discs 7/8" in diameter and one such disc 3/8" in diameter. Tap Plastics has all of these shapes.



The advantages are:
The air gap has a maximum area and minimum length to decrease the response time.
The tube of indicator solution is small enough to take very little solution, but is easily viewed in the aquarium.
It can be mounted in the tank with a "heater holder" suction cup device made for a 1" diameter tube. The clip can be easily cemented to the device.
It is small enough not to be overly obtrusive in the tank.

But, the disadvantage is that it takes a syringe with a bent needle to squirt in the solution.

I haven't made this yet, but will do so shortly.
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Old 11-21-2006, 10:39 PM   #102 (permalink)
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hhmmm... if one could add threads or a perhaps an o-ring to make a tight fit the top part of the unit could perhaps be removable?
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Old 11-22-2006, 07:16 AM   #103 (permalink)
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I was wondering if I could heat a test tube thing on the gas cooking range, fill it with sand or salt, and bend; or would the heat distribution be inadequate?
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Old 11-22-2006, 08:06 AM   #104 (permalink)
 
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I received my two types of drop checker from HK recently and have to say that I'm extermely pleased with both of them.

It was fiddly trying to get 4 dKh in distilled water, especially as i was running out of KH reagent but finally did it.

the drop checkers seem decent quality and both look good. My comments on them are that there are no instructions with them and the reagent is from a CO2 tester and doesn't mention using distilled water of known KH or anything - just 5 drops of the reagent into 'some' tank water. Oh. and why oh why do thye come with black suckers rather than clear ones? These are minor points and would not stop me buying any more.

Thank god for this post which inspired me to buy them in the first place. I give them a glance every morning and has taken all the guesswork out about Co2 levels - it's already saved a lot of tests and calcs - thanks Hoppy!



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Old 11-22-2006, 11:14 AM   #105 (permalink)
 
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Swifty do you notice any difference in the two styles as far as response time for a color change. Does one seem to lag behind the other?
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Old 11-22-2006, 11:51 AM   #106 (permalink)
 
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My drop checker (kH approx 5) still reads green the next day before the CO2 comes on again, which I guess is a good thing, but it surprised me. I confirmed that when I remove the drop checker from the tank, after a few hours the color is a deep blue (approx 7.5-7.6 pH).

I expected that much of the CO2 would outgass overnight, but I guess I was wrong. I run my spraybar horizontally at one end of the tank, angled slightly downward, which produces a slight surface ripple.
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Old 11-22-2006, 12:01 PM   #107 (permalink)
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My drop checker fluid goes to blue green overnight, then back to green in a couple of hours with the CO2 on. I was a little surprised at how little of the CO2 is lost overnight too.

fredyk: I don't think a gas range will be enough heat, concentrated enough to allow you to bend a glass test tube. If you try it, don't put anything in the tube, like sand, or it will make it much harder to heat up the area hot enough, and it will tend to imbed into the glass. The way real glass blowers do it is to slowly push the ends of the tube to shorten the test tube, thickening the glass where it is to be bent, then very gently blow into the tube as you bend it. That is a lot easier with a longer tube, of course. If you try this, be very careful!!
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Old 11-22-2006, 01:18 PM   #108 (permalink)
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Great thread. I ordered the ADA style knockoff yesterday and can't wait for it to arrive. Sometimes I think I enjoy the "stuff" as much as the fish and plants, lol.
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Old 11-22-2006, 04:15 PM   #109 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hoppycalif View Post
Here is a simple way to DIY this, using clear acrylic tube in 1 inch diameter and 1/2 inch diameter, plus two acrylic discs 7/8" in diameter and one such disc 3/8" in diameter. Tap Plastics has all of these shapes.



The advantages are:
The air gap has a maximum area and minimum length to decrease the response time.
The tube of indicator solution is small enough to take very little solution, but is easily viewed in the aquarium.
It can be mounted in the tank with a "heater holder" suction cup device made for a 1" diameter tube. The clip can be easily cemented to the device.
It is small enough not to be overly obtrusive in the tank.

But, the disadvantage is that it takes a syringe with a bent needle to squirt in the solution.

I haven't made this yet, but will do so shortly.

From the looks of the design it could just float in the tank also, only problem I see is you would have to hunt for it to check it.

I run my CO2 24/7 and the indicator solution stays the same color night and day. Maybe the plant uptake is a minor part of the total CO2 injected into the tank so the CO2 content of the tank water stays the same whether the plants are using it or not.
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Old 11-23-2006, 03:44 AM   #110 (permalink)
 
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Nah, i didn't really see any real difference in response times between the 2 styles. They both changed to green within 2-3 hrs, although you can see a colour change within about 30 mins.

I run my Co2 24/7 so don't notice any subtle colour change overnight.

When i first installed them the teardrop shaped one was almost yellow so I tuned down the Co2 a bit.

I've just bought a solenoid valve so may add this to the bigger tank overnight, pureley to save on Co2. If I notice any colour change overnight when I fit it I'll let you know.
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