Reservoir / Water Bottles
For as long time I used drink bottles, especially bottles from sport drinks that had nipple style top. I then moved to lab squirty bottles which I bought from the same place I got the retort stand. Later, when I upgraded the stand to 2020 extrusion I started using the T33 filter holders.
The lab squirty bottle has a tube that runs through the lid and this makes it easy to turn them in to a Mariotte syphon. A Mariotte syphon delivers a constant rate of flow regardless of the liquid level inside the bottle.
I remove the top tube and then I make a small hole at the bottom and hot glue a piece of stiff tube in the hole. This then allows PVC tube to be attached.
T33 Filter holders are very popular and used by some of the commercial systems. A benefit of these is they have threaded connections so nozzles can be easily attached.
Any soft plastic tubing will suffice. I buy general aquarium tubing from the local fish market. The most common sizes are 6mm and 10mm, depends on the size of the nozzles you use on the water bottle and the in side of the valve.
Almost anything can be used as the splash tray/container. I have a thing for Chinese tea cups (my mother-in-law has some really nice ones). I have used baking trays, CD containers (the lids), bowls, glasses.
After I became more serious with water drop photography I had a couple of acrylic trays made. One is 80x40cm and the other is 60x30cm. I also bought black and white acrylic sheets to use as inserts.
To the liquid used in the reservoir (used for the actual drops) I add Guar Gum, this thickens the liquid. I mix a level teaspoon of Guan Gum powder to 1 litre of warm water. I blend this is an electric blender and then strain with muslin cloth to remove any bits. This gives me a cloudy thick liquid which I dilute with cold water as I use it.
To the water in the splash tray I add various detergents or cleaning fluids (I have tried lots of different ones). One that works well is natureclean’s All Purpose Cleaning Lotion. This works very well and was recommended by Corrie White sometime ago.
I now use single voltage power supplies; either 12V or more commonly these days 24V.
Make sure you use a PSU that is able to supply a decent current. Most valves require around 0.2 to 0.275 amps each. I tend to error on the side of caution and the ones I use are rated around 5 Amps.