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Thread: Tom Barr's DIY Internal Reactor w/venturi

  1. #1
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    Tom Barr's DIY Internal Reactor w/venturi

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    Hi Folks, this is the design of Tom's DIY Internal CO2 reactor w/venturi. Easy to make and works great. Enjoy!

    Diagram 1


    Diagram 2


    Picture of the Final Product


    Permission granted by Tom Barr for use of pictures.

    Section Mods or Admin, can you put it as a sticky...I forgot to click the sticky button again.

    Regards
    Peter Gwee
    Last edited by PeterGwee; 12th Jun 2005 at 09:41.

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    What is the "Burp tube"? I can't see in the final product picture.

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    Roger, the burp tube is the one coming out from the bottom side of the output area. Its attached to a length of air-tubing going back into the intake strainer of the powerhead.

    This is prevent the CO2 from accumulating too much in the output area and allowing it to be sucked back into the powerhead and diffused into the output area again. Much like a self-bleeding mechanism to prevent the gas from being trapped.
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    Is there a good flowrate of the pump to recommend for a 2ft tank?
    Does the diameter and length of the tube matter significantly?

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    Quote Originally Posted by |squee|
    Is there a good flowrate of the pump to recommend for a 2ft tank?
    Does the diameter and length of the tube matter significantly?
    80-120gph should be good.

    The diameter and length should be pretty standard. 2" dia x 4" or 6". Smaller ones are better as they are internals. Multiple units can be used to increase the responsiveness for bigger tanks.

    Regards
    Peter Gwee

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    Burp Tube

    Quote Originally Posted by stormhawk
    Roger, the burp tube is the one coming out from the bottom side of the output area. Its attached to a length of air-tubing going back into the intake strainer of the powerhead.

    This is prevent the CO2 from accumulating too much in the output area and allowing it to be sucked back into the powerhead and diffused into the output area again. Much like a self-bleeding mechanism to prevent the gas from being trapped.
    Stormhawk/Roger,

    I think the "burp tube" is just a hole in the container. This acts as a second level check for excessive CO2. Once CO2 reach the burp level, it will be release straight out to the top bypassing the diffusion process.

    Cheers

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    mab, you got a point there. I must have mis-read the diagram.

    Anyway, getting some Viewtainers (same as those that Tom used) from a friend in the USA. Will be making my next prototype.. hopefully just as good as Tom's. I made one version already but I forgot to add the angled joint to the output. This prevented the water from coming out in a circular motion but rather in a single straight motion. Not good enough for total CO2 diffusion.

    Will post up images once I have the Viewtainers and have started on the 2nd prototype.
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    Quote Originally Posted by stormhawk
    Will post up images once I have the Viewtainers and have started on the 2nd prototype.

    I'm eagerly waiting for your pics. This will be my next project after completing my DIY cabinet (my wife has been complaining on the ugly sites of cannister filter & CO2 cylinder in the living room )

    Cheers

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    Quote Originally Posted by PeterGwee
    80-120gph should be good.

    The diameter and length should be pretty standard. 2" dia x 4" or 6". Smaller ones are better as they are internals. Multiple units can be used to increase the responsiveness for bigger tanks.

    Regards
    Peter Gwee
    Peter,

    Recently I tried to make a similar setup, but quite of CO2 fine-bubbles came out from below and rose up the tank top. How can this effective as many bubbles came out ? Wherelse the external Venturi (long PVC pipe) version does not produce bubbles for me .

    Any comment to this ?

    As you also mentioned many times to measure the effectiveness of the reactor, we need to check the PH before/during/after lighting period. Before the measurement of PH all CO2 injection, powerheads, filters are shut off. At the end of lighting period , PH usually is around 5.7 (low PH could due to DW). In the morning before CO2 injection is around 5.9.

    My CO2 injection is thru a separate 1260 pump now , and no longer connect to my 2262 filter and chiller.

    Setup as follow :
    tank--> 1260 pump --> external venturi reactor (1M long with bioballs) --> NA reactor (more swivel water movement) --> tank

    Right now I am still experimenting . Prior to that, the previous setup tank--> filter --> external venturi --> chiller --> tank, I still see BBA rampant, even crank up the CO2, and not much plant bubbling. With this new change, plants bubbling like mad. Wait for few weeks to see the result.

    Cheers

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    Hmmm... the very common green internal CO2 reactor that we get here can be DIY'd with the features from Tom's design. The burp hole is 2.5", and the venturi is 2" from the top of the reactor, as per Tom's original design.
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    The orientation of the powerhead needs to change or else it will airlock. Removing the bottom cap will help and there will little to no backpressure exerted on the CO2 line.

    Regards
    Peter Gwee

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    Hi,

    I am currently following the Vinz's version of the venturi using the taiwan brand internal reactor container. I place the powerhead and reactor at the back (left side) of the tank and blow toward the right side of the tank. Also adjusted the rainbar (back) to shot front/downward at half the height of the tank, to push some of the bubbles to the front of the tank.

    I have this venturi running the last 4 days I can see lots of bubbles shot out (I think it is good thing now) and attached to the leaves.

    What is the purpose of the burp hole as I can feel that strong current/jet of water shot out from this burp hole ?

    My observation :
    a) lots of bubbles shot out
    b) lots of bubbles attached to the leaves
    c) more bubbling from the plants (I can tell the difference). As my lighting setup <-- 150w MH -- 110w PL --- 150w MH---> . If I just turn on the 2 x 150w on both side on and off the 2 x 55w pL , there is less bubbling effect vs all light on. Bubbling start time now is also reduced.
    d) water is clearer
    e) BBA is persist probably too early to tell. Trim and cut some of the eye-sore place. Spray Seachem Excel on the infected leaves and DW.

    Any clue whether lots of bubbling can clear up the water ?

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    The higher DO helps bacteria work better.

    Regards
    Peter Gwee

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    Peter,

    What is higher DO ?

    Cheers

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    Quote Originally Posted by neon
    Peter,

    What is higher DO ?

    Cheers
    Dissolved Oxygen...

    Regards
    Peter Gwee

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    wanna know wat is the "venturi" thingy for?
    how do you connect the end which is in the inlet of the powerhead? juz stick the tube in or wat?

    dun really understand the venturi part from the diagram... wanna ask clearly before i start making one over the weekend...

    btw vinz, where do u get the clear container from?

    stormhawk, did u manage to get ur diy internal reactor project going? wanna see ur end product...

    Quote Originally Posted by PeterGwee
    The orientation of the powerhead needs to change or else it will airlock.
    how should the powerhead be positioned in the tank then? and wat do u mean by airlock?
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    thanks peter for the post, quite clear. looks like burp hole is positioned lower than the venturi loop co that co2 is not wasted or any other gasses trapped inside can let itself out.
    now to go looking for the container...some goldfish pellet containers...hmmm
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    Here is a crude prototype I made using the above plans, an old internal reactor and a 800L/hr powerhead.

    Results: noticed more mirco bubbles circulating within the tank, some some them are attached to the leaves.

    Is it necessary to have the burp hole? A fair amount of gas is escaping from it.


    Tks



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    I replicate Tom's design by making use of material available locally, so that perhaps others can use as reference :

    First, find the smallest (and cheapest) internal power head, cost around S$11:



    Then find some cheap plastic pepper shaker (or spice bottle). I found this in local NTUC Super Market a pack of 3 only around Singapore three dollars plus :



    Heres a closed up view of the plastic cylinderical container :



    After some drilling and adding tube fitting ...

    Heres the finished product :



    And fitting into the tank :



    The only feature I omitted is the burp tube, which I found that for my configuration if the powerhead is stopped for the night (to prevent over buildup of CO2 level at night**) the CO2 bubble will escape vertically up the outlet of the power head and out from the water inlet.
    (** This is for the case of DIY CO2 injection. For pressurized CO2 system simply control the CO2 injection by solenoid timed with the light switch.)
    Also I found adding the filter floss help to retain the bubbles/mist within the cylinder, while the venturi feature keep the mist cycling inside.

    And heres a small movie clip of the reactor in action :

    http://web.singnet.com.sg/~dslchua/p...ctor_Movie.mpg

    Finally, a big thankyou to Tom for his generous sharing of innovative ideas and guidance, and thanks Peter for his advice too.

    Added refinement (14 Jun 06) :



    I found that switching the inlet and venturi connection give a better misting effect.
    Last edited by dc88; 14th Jun 2006 at 20:28.

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    Hi All,

    Is this work effective for a big tank like 6 ft??

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