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I was reading a thread and thought what the heck is this? I must have missed the boat when this topic came up. Anyone care to explain what this is and why it so much better then ceramic diffusor in the water flow. From what I gather you run the pump externally into the return of your canister and bubble the CO2 into the pump?
 

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The pumps are used mainly for protein skimmers. But for our application it works very well and has a few added benefits.

One would be you get added flow to the tank.
2nd. You get tons of fine mist distributed in the tank much like a Mazzei or diffuser.

The impeller is a little different than your average impeller. Its needle like instead of paddle like. This is what provides the fine mist. :)

I hope that all made sense..
http://www.plantedtank.net/forums/e...eel-co2-diffusion-fractionating-impeller.html

-Orlando

P.S

You dont have to plumb them into filter lines. I use them on there own separate loops...
 

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I've been using them for a while, and think they are great.
extremely efficient, and easier to dial in than mazzei. (my opinion)
the only downside, which I consider an upside is the microbubbles.

microbubbles of CO2 enter the water column and are spread all around the tank.
some say they are unsightly, I say they help me visually manage flow.
If I see microbubbles entering and leaving the plantbeds, then I know flow is good.
this has been extremely beneficial to me when managing dense plantings.

a couple feet back from the tank you cannot see the bubbles.
for closeup photos you can shut off the gas.
 

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Adding a pump to the return of a canister significantly boosts the canister output. Running a closed loop will increase water movement in the tank even further.

The main benefits over a ceramic disk are bubble size and lack of cleaning. Some people claim to have ceramic diffusers that produce ultrafine, mist like bubbles, but I have yet to see one. A plumbed needlewheel produces extremely small bubbles.
Ceramic diffusers do best with regular cleaning, if needlewheel pumps ever need to be cleaned at all, it is very infrequent.

Overall, it is just another way of getting CO2 into the tank. If you already have adequate water movement, and a well functioning ceramic disc that you don't mind cleaning, then there really is no benefit.
 

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I've been using them for a while, and think they are great.
extremely efficient, and easier to dial in than mazzei. (my opinion)
the only downside, which I consider an upside is the microbubbles.

microbubbles of CO2 enter the water column and are spread all around the tank.
some say they are unsightly, I say they help me visually manage flow.
If I see microbubbles entering and leaving the plantbeds, then I know flow is good.
this has been extremely beneficial to me when managing dense plantings.

a couple feet back from the tank you cannot see the bubbles.
for closeup photos you can shut off the gas.
I'm a little confused about what you are trying to do? It seems that you are trying to make carbonated water!

What is controlling the final concentration of CO2 in your set up? Tom Barr recommends 30 ppm and I think 20 ppm is more than enough. What are you setting as your tank limit?

At 20 ppm I more than double the biomass of my plants in 6 mo.
 

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regulator
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In my case there is no target or controller and I have only a needle valve to meter the gas after the regulator, but the needlewheel pump could be part of any controlled system that kicks gas on and off by a pH reading or something else. and it is a lot like carbonated water ;) or more like a nice stout :drinkers: .

the bubbles are *tiny* when its going well, think of the little bubbles in guinness. After a pint is pulled notice the bubbles move downwards, swirl around - they follow flow readily and are less in a hurry to reach the surface. So CO2 is distributed all around the tank as a fine mist. I have no scientific reason why I've had so much success using needlewheels, but I like it very much.
 

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In my case there is no target or controller and I have only a needle valve to meter the gas after the regulator, but the needlewheel pump could be part of any controlled system that kicks gas on and off by a pH reading or something else. and it is a lot like carbonated water ;) or more like a nice stout :drinkers: .

the bubbles are *tiny* when its going well, think of the little bubbles in guinness. After a pint is pulled notice the bubbles move downwards, swirl around - they follow flow readily and are less in a hurry to reach the surface. So CO2 is distributed all around the tank as a fine mist. I have no scientific reason why I've had so much success using needlewheels, but I like it very much.
Well put! :)

Thanks! Im thirsty now :)
 

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yeah I made myself thirsty orlando..

I don't know who came up with the idea of using the pump off a protein skimmer to mix CO2 into our tanks but bless 'em!
 

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I remember seeing wasserpest's suggestion to put an AC30 powerhead ontop of a sponge, running CO2 into the impeller. That was around '06, and I remember seeing people melting holes in the impeller blades and also cutting them to increase fractioning not too long after that. I cant remember where I saw the OTP series needlewheels in action, maybe the youtube video. But I got one ASAP and now I have 3 running. I use smaller powerheads on smaller tanks, some with modified impellers.

one thing I haven't tried yet is stainless mesh for chopping up the bubbles. How about you Orlando? I'm a bit worried about it becoming clogged with debris but maybe thats not an issue. I have a stock OTP-1000 that has run 24/7 for 1.5 years now and hasn't been cleaned yet. I don't prefilter the intake on it. So for a long term solution I think the needlewheel misting is pretty stable.
 

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That youtube video is what got me started! Lol!

I have seen people use those mesh mods, have you seen them? It a little kit with some funky mesh and I think zip ties?
I know the reef folks use them all the time. Personally I dont really see a need for them with our tanks.
One thing I was thinking of is building a PVC fitting with one of Hydor ceramic tubes inside afixed some how and have co2 mist going into the pump.
What do you think?
 

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regulator
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so you gonna try it? ;)
I'd be willing to give it a shot. I think the stock venturi I have needs to go also.

heres a quick pic of an unmodified octopus impeller, to show what needlewheel looks like :

 

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I found this thread on RC that is specific to my octopus pumps, looks like the impeller mod is reversible since the mesh is just zip tied to the blades and trimmed. Let me know how it goes. I think I'll order some of the enkamat mesh this week.

glad this thread got started..just a little nudge to get me to go a bit further with the needlewheel method.
I monitor power draw on my pumps so I'll be able to see what happens there also.

edit : well I read the thread(s) closer instead of just a skim, and its not reversible (doh!)
you cut off the top row of impeller blades. I do have a spare impeller but I still hope I dont screw up when I add the mesh.
 
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