DIY Nilsen Reactor project

Hooked

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Okay, I'm getting ready to build a Nilsen kalk reactor and need some input. I have 4 1/2" o.d. acrylic tubing which I plan to use with pvc fittings. This will not have a magnetic stirrer, but a pump to stir the kalk.

Questions--

1. Some plans show the fittings threaded into the body and some show them glued in. Is one better than the other?

2. I've read that I should use Weld-on 4052, or 40, or 42 to attach acrylic to pvc. I attached a pvc fitting to a scrap of acrylic with Weld-on 16 and it seems to make a good bond. Is it okay to use 16, or will I have a problem in the long run?

3. Finally, dosing. If I use Spectrapure's single liquid level controller I estimate it will add about a gallon of kalk at one time. This seems like too much in a 90 gallon tank??? Would I be better off to use a peristaltic pump? Can you run a peristaltic pump on a timer? I'd rather dose only at night.

Sorry so many questions. All replies appreciated. :cool:

I'll post pics of the construction, but it'll probably be a couple weeks--busy social life :rolleyes:
 

reedman

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I glued my fittings into the body of the reactor. I feel better about the seal, as opposed to threaded. This is just where you are comfortable with your DIY skills. If you are good with a tap and dye set then you should be just fine with the threaded.

I ended up using weldon 16 and it was fine, but I'll let the experts here answer that for you.

I would definetly recommend a peristaltic pump. My kalk topoff runs 24/7 without any issues and I evaporate a little over a gallon a day on my 75. It's your call as to weather to run it only at night or all the time.
 

reedman

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The experts have spoken. I would do what they say as they have plenty of experience with acrylic.
 

Hooked

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Thanks everyone. Sounds like the Weld-on 40 is the adhesive to use.

Any input on the dosing method/equipment?

TIA :)
 

wanareef

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Weldon 16 works and mine has not leaked since day one, plus it's cheaper than 40.

I have our topoff on a float switch, that turns on a PH from the ro/di tank through the kalk reactor and to the sump. On the kalk ractor (diy) there is a PH that is on a timer that comes on every 6hrs for about 5mins - didn't want to spend $20 on a digital timer-that mixes the kalk. Nothing fancy- but it works.

hth
 

Hooked

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Thanks wanareef

I'm trying to find a 1/4" pipe tap. The 1/4" tap at the local hardware is 1/4-20 and I believe pipe thread is 1/4-18. Can anyone confirm that and suggest a place to buy such a critter?

I found one online, but they had a $25 minimum order--the tap was only $5

FWIW-- I'm going to tap my threads into a pvc plug. So if I screw it up I can just try again and the body of the reactor won't be ruined.
 

Otter

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Yes a 1/4"pipe tap is 18 threads per inch it also is made on a taper for sealing purposes
 

Zephrant

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You might try harborfreight.com. They have a complete set of pipe taps up to 1.25", for not too much. I use them a ton now.

Zeph
 
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wanareef

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As Zeph suggested, harbor frieght is a great place. That 1/4-20 is a "regular" thread size and would be "straight" and not tappered. Kind of confusing.
 

Hooked

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I have it partially assembled. This is a pic of it -- not glued yet and still don't have the fittings for the water in/kalk out yet. The fittings on the collar are for the mixing pump which will be a Eheim 1048.
 

Hooked

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I actually remembered to take some pics during construction, so I'll post a few.

I drilled two 13/16" holes in the slip coupling 90 degrees apart using a wood boring bit, then cleaned up the hole with a sanding barrel on a dremel

I clamped the coupling to my workbench so it would be nice and steady.
 

Hooked

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The pic doesn't show it very well, but I used the dremel to cup the edges of the fitting to fit the outer contour of the coupling.

I want to use John Guest fittings for the water in/kalk out and I have a 1/4" pipe tap, but I can't find a tap handle large enough to hold it (if it's not one thing, it's another :( )

Sooo...I noticed US Plastics has 1/4" schedule 40 fittings and thought I'd just use a reducer for 1/2" to 1/4".
 

Blane

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Why not get a tap handell for your tap? The JG fittings are mighty handy. I'm sure that you could get a tap handell from home depot or harber freight. Just a thought.
 
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