Local Fish Stores



Recent forum topics

NEW SITE
Mike
Top for 93 cube
2018 Frag Swap
75G Mix Reef Build
75 Gallon Reef Tank
 

If this is your first time visiting since the Upgrade please reset your password.

You need to log in to create posts and topics.

Aiptasia Zapper DIY. (Lots of Pictures)

Pages:12

Okie doke, have some time to put this together tonight. A while back some local reefers bought an aiptasia zapper but it broke so quickly there wasnt enough use to understand if it was beneficial or not. I knew there were a bunch of diy versions but it seemed the designs were all poor. I decided to make one and make it so it will last. Its got some rough spots but it does the trick.

Step 1. I needed to get something that would hold up to multiple uses. Some have tried welding rods, plain wire, and sewing needles with limited success. Seemed outside of the welding rods they all disintegrate after a few uses. I bought a pack of knitting needles from walmart - $4. They are nice and thick.

[attachment=1130]Aneedle.jpg[/attachment]

Step 2. With my job I have access to lots or weird stuff. I snagged an insulin training pen and removed the rubber stopper.

[attachment=1131]2stopper.jpg[/attachment]

Step 3. I drilled a hole through the center of the stopper and attempted to glue it into a syringe, it didnt work, to much pressure from what is to come. I also drilled the "tip" of the syringe to widen the mouth a touch. The knitting needle fit perfectly into the tip and then into the plunger. I pushed the needle about 1 inch through the stopper.

[attachment=1132]4syringe.jpg[/attachment]

Step 4. I took a 10-12 AWG connector and glue it into a piece of 1/4 ID tubing. This size connector allowed the knitting needle's blunt end to enter the open side of the connector. Verbiage doesnt make sense but the pic does.

[attachment=1133]5connector.jpg[/attachment]

Step 5. After connecting some 14 gauge wire to the connector I glued it together with the syringe. The tubing fit nicely into the opening on the syringe. Using epoxy again, I sealed all the necessary parts.

[attachment=1134]6syringeglued.jpg[/attachment]

Step 6. Needing some graphite, I used a carpenter's pencil and my band saw to expose guts. After a laborious process of pulling all the little tiny slivers off, I had a nice piece of graphite for use. Smaller/thinner graphite breaks down quickly and seems to be a problem area for many diy zappers.

[attachment=1135]7pencil.jpg[/attachment]

[attachment=1136]8pencil.jpg[/attachment]

Step 7. Using the insulin pen's needle cap I capped off one end of a short piece of 1/4 ID tube with epoxy. I drilled a bunch of small holes into the tube to allow tank water to flow in and out. I inserted the graphite and left about 3/4 inch exposed for electrical contact.

[attachment=1137]9graphiteend.jpg[/attachment]

Step 8. I used some shrink tubing to be sure my glued parts sealed 100%. The whole purpose of this arm is to expose the graphite to the saltwater and obviously keep the remaining wires sealed off.

[attachment=1138]99completegraphiteend.jpg[/attachment]

Step 9. I inserted the knitting needle into the syringe and through the rubber stopper to its final, but removable, resting place.

[attachment=1139]9999.jpg[/attachment]

Step 10. I took a project box from Radio Shak, added a momentary switch, wired the two points to a wall-wart, and viola! I thought I had a smaller project box, this thing is waaaaay to big!

[attachment=1140]999box.jpg[/attachment]

My thoughts on the build.

First, there are a bunch of DIY threads out there but nothing really complete. I had to track down a couple people and ask a bunch of basic questions, like how is it powered, why are the rods degrading so quickly, etc. Basically, use better grade materials and you will be fine.

Second, I wish the knitting needle was shorter. I think this would give me better control. It is not just the tip of the needle, rather the whole exposed part, 2-2 1/2 inches, that gives off the chlorine. They dont really "Zap" as all the names suggest. The reaction via graphite/electricity create chlorine. So in essence you burn the pest anemone or mushroom.

Third, you cant really see it but I used RO/DI tubing (PEX) for the needle side. It is a pain in the arse to maneuver. I would definitely swap it out with some other tube if at all possible. I ran out and I had this laying there.

All in all, it was a fun build and I have used this about 5-6 times already. I dont have aptasia in my tank so I cant report on that. I have nuked some green shrooms that are taking over a colony of zoas. I blasted 6-7 of them into mush but I wanted to be careful not to do to much at one time as I wasnt running carbon. I have used it on some GSP with limited success, I think there is just to much needle to get a good concentration point.

Hope this is helpful and if any other pics are needed please let me know.

I have a few in my fuge you can test it on. lol

Nice build Mike...what would you estimate your total cost and time spent on this?

Do you think one of those curved syringe tips that they supply you with in the Joes Juice or AiptasiaX kits would work?...I have one if you think it would and want to try it out

Nice build, but I am at a loss for how it works and the actual wiring. Admittedly, I don't know much at all about these zappers.

[quote="jb61264" post=9701]Nice build Mike...what would you estimate your total cost and time spent on this?[/quote]

Cost for the project was pretty cheap. Lets see if I can break it down.

Knitting needles - $4
syringe - $1
Epoxy - $4
1/4 ID tube 3 ft - $1?
Project box - $5
Momentary switch - $5
Mist wire - $1

Total I would estimate $20-25 for the build. My cost was actually $9 as I only bought the needles and the switch.

[quote="jb61264" post=9701]Do you think one of those curved syringe tips that they supply you with in the Joes Juice or AiptasiaX kits would work?...I have one if you think it would and want to try it out[/quote]

It would work if the internals were setup to make contact with the metal. The female spade connector is how the knitting needle makes contact for power. There was a post online and the guy did something like that with an actual needle. It slid into the opening of one of those.

[quote="elderfo" post=9702]Nice build, but I am at a loss for how it works and the actual wiring. Admittedly, I don't know much at all about these zappers.[/quote]

This is where I had a hard time wrapping my head around the idea too.

The wall-wart powers two sides; positive goes to the knitting needle and the negative to the piece of graphite. When powered up, vodoo magic jumps in. Because of the reaction of the graphite in the saltwater the "loop" is completed and in turn chlorine is given off from the needle side. It bubbles like alka seltzer.

I might be off a bit on the chemical reactions, but this is how it was explained on various sites.

Great write up on your build! Even though I don't have any aptasia right now I'm half tempted to build one anyway ๐Ÿ˜† !

[quote="flyguy1821" post=9706][quote="elderfo" post=9702]Nice build, but I am at a loss for how it works and the actual wiring. Admittedly, I don't know much at all about these zappers.[/quote]

This is where I had a hard time wrapping my head around the idea too.

The wall-wart powers two sides; positive goes to the knitting needle and the negative to the piece of graphite. When powered up, vodoo magic jumps in. Because of the reaction of the graphite in the saltwater the "loop" is completed and in turn chlorine is given off from the needle side. It bubbles like alka seltzer.

I might be off a bit on the chemical reactions, but this is how it was explained on various sites.[/quote]
Thanks for the clarification!

Pages:12

 
 
 
 
 
 
Pic Of The Week


Contest Winner