03-04-2003, 05:40 PM
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: West Side Massachusetts
Everything you wanted to know about macroline.
Written up at the request of me. Great job cocker kid! -Bourne
Macroline can be a tricky thing at times, and I have noticed throughout this site that not everyone knows how to use/properly install macroline and other people don't know whether to get macroline or steel braided hose. So listen up closely and I'll answer all your questions about macroline in this thread.
Macroline looks and feels like plastic. It has the same standard ID size as steel braided hose, meaning that neither one will offer higher flowing performance. Macroline is very easy to install correctly, but is also very easy to install incorrectly so you need to be careful when you're cutting your macroline hose to your desired length or you may just screw it up.
When you first get your macroline kit, which can be found here - the first thing you need to do is install the fittings.
Normally you three choices:
- One 90* fitting and one straight fitting
- Two straight fittings
- Two 90* fittings
The only difference between the two kinds of fittings is to make your macroline setup look as good as possible. To install the fittings, my tool of choice would be an adjustable cresent wrench. I use a fully adjustable so you know you can get a good fit on the macroline adapters and you won't scratch them up, as you run the risk of doing if you do the job with pliers or other such tools that require you to put a lot of pressure on the fitting.
Next step to installing a macroline setup is the part where most people fail if they are new to macroline. When you first take the macroline out of the package you will notice that is very smooth on the ends of the hose, both sides. If it has rough edges or is cut unevenly it can leak. So when you are trying to cut your macroline to the desired length I recomend you do two things:
1) Cut the hose about an inch longer than it needs to be(i'll explain why later).
2) Cut it with a very sharp object like a pair of kitchen scissors.
Something I've seen countless people do is try to cut their macroline hose with a steak knife or other similar utensil which is most likely the least effective way to get a good clean cut. What a steak knife will do is just leave a ragged cut since the knife itself has a ragged edge on it. The other part that is bad about cutting a macroline with such a tool is you have to do it with the macroline sitting on some sort of "flat" surface and you cannot always ensure a cut that's right down the center. It can either vary by moving a bit to the left or a bit to the right. Either way is unacceptable, as it will be off a bit and most likely leak.
Now, why make the hose an inch or so longer you ask? Very simple, macroline is not the strongest thing, it can wear away in the fittings and become uneven on one side which will require you to trim your macroline every now and then, and the last thing we want is to have the macroline perfect length, only to need to cut some off making it too short and also making it useless. I have found over my past experiences with macroline, that it tends to wear away more with the usage of pure co2 over anti-siphoned co2 or nitrogen. I think thats pretty obvious why, if liquid co2 touches part of the fitting it can cause it to crack, cracks can mean small, unoticable leaks but leaks nonetheless that will drain your tanks faster than you think. With anti-siphoned co2 and nitrogen you will notice the same wear and tear that you should expect to get, eventually it will wear away at the hose, but thats why you leave the hose an inch longer so you can trim it and still use it for a good long time. And even when it is time to replace the macroline hose, it only costs a dollar per foot, so its not like its going to cost you an arm and a leg.
Another thing that people who are new to macroline can get confused over is how to uninstall the hose itself from the fittings. This is a very simple process. All you need to do is pull out on the ring on the top of the macroline fitting when you pull out the hose. So in other words, you pull out the hose, and you will notice a ring that looks like its trying to come out but is stuck, while you keep pulling on the hose, all you do is push down on the ring, and it will release the hose from the fitting. Look at the side of the fitting that is pointing upward, you can see the ring that needs to be pushed down Here is a pic of the straight elbow, casually look at the top portion of the elbow and you will notice the same design, all you do is push down on the ring and pull the hose out at the same time with this fitting as well and the hose will come free.
So there you have it, all the wonders of macroline are revealed, hope this helped!