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Scotschult
04-07-2008, 06:28 PM
Great Thanks to Notchback for showing a link to a skimmer design in another thread!
I bought a setup that has a (I believe) SeaClone Skimmer. Found numerous reviews that basically said this was so-so at best. Since this is my first attempt at saltwater, I want to try do everything right the first time, or at least the best I can, till I learn otherwise. So I thought "Hey, why not try a DIY? I'm a pretty handy guy!". That being said:
My setup is-75 gal, with about 80-90 lbs live rock. No livestock yet. Right now the plan is FOWLR, eventually going to reef. The tank is starting to cycle, and I want to take it slow & easy, as in Baby Steps. Out all of the skimmer designs I've found, the one mentioned previously seems (to me, anyway) to be a pretty straight-forward design. However, most designs I've found (including this one?) seem to be geared towards having a sump, which I do not. No room. I'd like to try to recycle the SeaClone pump if possible. Does the attached picture seem feasible? Part of me say's "Sure, no problem!", while the other half say's "No way will that EVER work!". Thoughts? Input? I'm open for whatever.

Diagram is in no way to scale, but it's fairly close, with my (added) plumbing in red, and expanded/edited for clarity. Any/all help is appreciated.

Scott

http://i85.photobucket.com/albums/k49/scotschult/skimmer.jpg

Deuce67
04-07-2008, 06:36 PM
Skimmer input is way too high. You want that towards the bottom so there is more bubble contact time.

Scotschult
04-07-2008, 07:18 PM
Skimmer input is way too high. You want that towards the bottom so there is more bubble contact time.

The specs I have/plan to go by are: Body is 4" diameter, 4' high. Input fitting is 6" below the top. Would you think lower still? 12"-18"? Or maybe at the bottom?

Scott

Deuce67
04-07-2008, 07:25 PM
About 3/4 of the way down should do it. 4' high with a 4" body seems to much. What skimmer pump are you running?

Scotschult
04-07-2008, 08:19 PM
No specific plans on a pump, other than trying to make the SeaClone work. The more I read, the more confused I get. You know, one guy says to blow all you can thru it, and the next says to go as slow as you can, for more reaction time. I figured, since I'm in no great hurry, this would be a good place for trial & error (but hopefully not too heavy on the error part).

Jiggyfly
04-07-2008, 09:03 PM
upgrade your skimmer and you will never regret it.skimmers are the heart of the system IMO.I wish I would have upgraded mine alot earlier as I can see the noticable diff now that its made.I personally like the needle wheels designs.there are a few needle wheel skimmers that are quite affordable. for a 75 g tank I would get something for a 180 ish size.

notchback5.0
04-07-2008, 09:35 PM
The design is a counter current skimmer. In order for it to work you need to maximize water to air contact. Your air source needs to come from the bottom of the skimmer and the water source from the top exiting the bottom. This causes the air to take a longer time to reach the top of the skimmer maximizing the contact time. Your design really will not work well because the air has an extremly short contact rate. I am still trying to get mine working properly. I had eric make a skimmer cup but I think I need to modify the vent for it to work correctly but we will see. If my design works correctly, I will let you know. I used a modified design from the snail man design, but it basically follows all the rules. If you want to build a 4 inch skimmer, I have a large quanity of 4" pvc if you need to buy some and dont want to buy a 5 foot section... I also would like to point out that snailmans recommendations state the skimmer body should be no less than 29 inches... Mine right now is only about 22 inches and seems to be working...

notchback5.0
04-08-2008, 09:27 AM
update:

Woke up this morning, and the skimmer had made about 1/2 a cup of skimmmate. The skimmate is a yellow color, but still a little wet. I adjusted my water level down about another 3/4 of an inch to lenghten the reaction chamber. I will see what it does in another 12 hours.... Hopefully i get a little less skimmate, but more of a yellow/brown....

How much skimmate does everyone get from their skimmer in a 24 hour period? My remora had to be cleaned out about once every 3 or 4 days on this tank, and the skimmer cup would hold about a 1.5 cup total....

notchback5.0
04-08-2008, 01:17 PM
:nopics:

Here is a picture of my skimmer body. I did not like the thought of "Gluing" fittings to PVC using the snail man design, but I came up with something better. His design is a serious leak waiting to happpen. My way the whole body is bonded using pvc piping and pvc cement. To me this design is much better. I made a different outlet that goes an inch from the bottom to stop from getting micro bubbles and my inlet is different using a 45 degree fitting to make the water swirl. mine does not swirl enough but will once i modify the outlet it will. .

Deuce67
04-08-2008, 01:31 PM
update:

How much skimmate does everyone get from their skimmer in a 24 hour period? My remora had to be cleaned out about once every 3 or 4 days on this tank, and the skimmer cup would hold about a 1.5 cup total....

This is what I get every 2-3 days. Cup is 8.5" in diameter and is around 6" tall with a 5" neck

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v485/Deuce67/skim2.jpg


http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v485/Deuce67/skimmate1.jpg

Huhhhhh
04-08-2008, 02:14 PM
Dam that's impressive for 2 to 3 days.

LDogg
04-08-2008, 02:27 PM
my Orca should be here next week. Shan is shipping it out today.

notchback5.0
04-08-2008, 02:46 PM
WOW! Mine is no where near that dark. mine is much more yellow. Its crazy how such a white foam turns into a nasty brown substance. I am still working on determining the correct air settings. I lowered the air current as well and the bubbles at the top seem smaller. The foam seems more dense like in the picture in yours... Where are the diy settings for my skimmer! :icon_blaugh:

Deuce67
04-08-2008, 03:15 PM
There is nothing wrong with a DIY skimmer. The only thing is, the template you are using is snailmans design. Its a pretty outdated skimmer. With other skimmer manufacturers copying features from other high end skimmers such as a Bubble King, prices are really not that bad nowadays.

notchback5.0
04-08-2008, 04:20 PM
The theory behind skimmers has not changed, and the attraction of organics to air still remain the same. My skimmer is producing good skimmate and is working for me. I did a DIY skimmer because of space constraints and because I did not want a hang on tank type, and I have not found any good diy skimmer designs for cocurrent.... I have no way of fitting one in my sump either LOL. When I do my 100 gal, I am going to use a 20gal long and build a sump that I can fit a good skimmer in.

notchback5.0
04-09-2008, 08:03 AM
This design seems to be quite easy to duplicate. Would this type of skimmer be worth making? I could make one of these that I could fit in my sump most likely. This is made by ORCA I believe.

http://www.protein-skimmer.com/images/customers/446996/eshop_images/DASskimmer.jpg

I am guessing these recirculate the water and maximize air to water contact time.

Murfman
04-09-2008, 09:03 AM
I am guessing these recirculate the water and maximize air to water contact time.

Yep it is a recirculating type. Some of the bigger ones have up to 4 pump recirculating. I am thinking of modifying my Octopus to a recirc.

notchback5.0
04-09-2008, 09:42 AM
recirculating seems to really make the footprint much larger. I will probably make one of these when i set up the new tank.. i think I am going to use a 55 gal as a sump instead a 20 gal...

notchback5.0
04-09-2008, 02:22 PM
Duece, do you have a diy skimmer design that uses a recirc, or co current design? I would love to make a skimmer that is more efficient than mine... Mine works fine but takes a long time to start producing skimmate and if i have to turn it off for any time, it has to build up again which takes a few hours. I may be able to modify my current skimmer to add a recirc but i would rather redesign it out of acrylic which will be cheaper in my opinion.. I also would have to find some type of pump that will not leak if set up externally...

Deuce67
04-09-2008, 03:51 PM
Thats Deuce! Lol, Russ is fine. Nah, I dont have any skimmer design. Even my skimmer takes a few to restart after feeding or when I shut it off for cleaning. I diy'ed a few thing but never a skimmer. Acrylic tubing just cost too much.

notchback5.0
04-09-2008, 03:54 PM
my roommate goes by duece on all the boards and he spells it incorrectly.. I'm just used to spelling it that way LOL...

notchback5.0
04-09-2008, 06:23 PM
Where the heck is the guy who started this thread LOL....

Update:

i came home today and there was about 1/2 a cup of skimmate in my container over about a 24 hour period. The color seems to be getting darker as the skimmer is up and running, but still no where as dark as the one pictured. I boosted the air ever so slightly to see if that will give me a little more skimmate about the same color. I am amazed this actually works. I was about to give up on this thing, but finally got it working once I added more wooden air stones. (4 total inside) I bet one that is 4 ft tall would really kick out some skimmate, but it really would need a good air pump due to all the head pressure.

I really dont expect to get a bunch of skimmate at this time being that I only have a few fish... I am assuming a lower load will result in less skimmate overall and since this is a counter current skimmer it will only foam up when there is something in the water to remove... So far, I will say my design is working efficiently and doing its job, but if I convert it to a recirc design, it probably will work better since it will prolong the air/water contact time...