Converting a Skimz algae reactor to a scrubber

Holy_makerel

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Ha! I did something very similar a few weeks ago. I upgraded the lights too right after this. Mine has been growing algae so I'm hoping it will exploded with growth here soon
IMG_20181023_221741.jpg
 
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Yes, I would recommend gha over Chaeto for a low nutrient tank. If I was OP, I would have dosed iron. Photosynthesis is not limited by the most abundant nutrient, it is limited by the least abundant nutrient.

I have no idea as to best flowrate. I would think that light intensity is more important than flow rate.
 

saltyfilmfolks

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Yes, I would recommend gha over Chaeto for a low nutrient tank. If I was OP, I would have dosed iron. Photosynthesis is not limited by the most abundant nutrient, it is limited by the least abundant nutrient.

I have no idea as to best flowrate. I would think that light intensity is more important than flow rate.
Interesting.
Randy always seems to think enough iron should be coming in with food and water changes.
Me, dunno.

I kinda feel flow is an issue. Isnwoth coral and terrestrial plants, as far as boundary layers too.
 

Crabs McJones

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Interesting.
Randy always seems to think enough iron should be coming in with food and water changes.
Me, dunno.

I kinda feel flow is an issue. Isnwoth coral and terrestrial plants, as far as boundary layers too.
Agree. Flow is a huge factor. I have about 10x turnover on my fuge. Dont dose anything other than 2 part :)
 
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mta_morrow

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Ha! I did something very similar a few weeks ago. I upgraded the lights too right after this. Mine has been growing algae so I'm hoping it will exploded with growth here soon
IMG_20181023_221741.jpg

Cool! Please feel free to post you progress and observations here if you don’t already have a thread going!
 

Subsea

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Ha! I did something very similar a few weeks ago. I upgraded the lights too right after this. Mine has been growing algae so I'm hoping it will exploded with growth here soon
IMG_20181023_221741.jpg

I like the algae reactor with external rope light better for simplicity. Also, after 47 years with marine tanks, as much as possible, I keep electrical devices out of the water.

The really nice thing about these algae reactors is how easily they can be plumbed in. I considered a syphon feed from display thru reactor into the sump. On a differrent thread, carbon dioxide was brought up as a possible limiting factor. They suggested a co2 air bubbler in front of reactor. I don’t think it is necessary to bring co2 into system, it does it easily by itself. Increasing flow rate thru reactor should accomplish the same thing. In BRS TV Invistigates, 1700 PAR on a 12 hour opposite light cycle a pH of 8.9 was established at refugium discharge. Obviously, carbon dioxide was uptaken by photosynthesis faster than it could dissolve into the water. To accomplish 1700 PAR on a 25G refugium required a $1500 light. I believe intense PAR levels can be reached in a clear acrylic tube for < $100 using string led.
 
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vetteguy53081

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Great concept and nitrate reducer.
In this hobby. . . .. . .

 
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Long story made short......

I have some sea lettuce coming soon.

I think I am going to put some in the upper section of the reactor and see what happens.

Anything wrong with trying this that I’m not aware of?
 
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Any updates on the conversion?
Sorry I didn’t respond sooner. I took it offline as I had a bout with cyano in the tank and that’s all that was growing in the reactor.

I will start posting here again once I put it back on line.

Right now I’m at

PO4 .018
NO3 16

So until those start rising, no need for me to do anything.
 
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Ok, so I started this little project back up again. The converted reactor has been in the sump for 8 days and I have the first signs of hair algae growing.

Here is a short video of the conversion

And here is a pic from above looking down into the reactor. You can see the first small patch growing on the screen.
196A398A-8C0D-4F50-BC29-9F5139817C88.jpeg
 
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I’m nearing the 30 day mark with this.
I can see plenty of hair algae growing inside, but the clear plastic top has algae growing on it as well and is limiting my view.

I will wait till next weekend then pop off and clean the top to get a better view.
 
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And I’m currently running the lights 6 hours on, 6 off. So a total of 12 hours per day.

Now that I’m seeing growth I will change it to run 10 pm to 10 am, opposite of my LED’s
 
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Ok, it’s really looking like algae growth is exploding in the reactor. Display is totally clean if algae as it has been for along time.

I think it’s about time to open it up and get a good look. Shooting for this weekend.
 

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A few weeks ago I also changed an old cheato reactor that I had build (basically a DI resin filter from an RO system) with growth LED strip around it. Was unable to grow cheato in it but I did try it out by seeding it with hair algae and it has been growing nice for a week but than it stopped. I did notice that my NO3 dropped to 0.5 so probably thats the reason. Although I have some algae in the display tank.

I'm waiting for materials to build an algae scrubber using waterfall because it would be a lot easier to remove the algae than in a reactor. And if it isn't easy, I would probably leave it in for too long which might cause nutrients to drop too low while if you remove it every week from an easy to access scrubber, it might give better results.

Did love to use it in a reactor though as it is nice and clean and doesn't take up a lot of space.
 
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Ok, it’s been 50 days since I put it in the sump with a little algae rubbed into the screen.
i pulled it yesterday and cleaned it / harvested. Got way more than I thought I would based on how little algae I had to try and seed it. It was enough to fill a red plastic cup 1/3 of the way!
6DCB8BC1-48C9-49F9-B5BA-6F83D1B2E31D.jpeg
 

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Hello,you still use it,what was your results on the phosphate and nitrate?
 

code4

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Ok, it’s been 50 days since I put it in the sump with a little algae rubbed into the screen.
i pulled it yesterday and cleaned it / harvested. Got way more than I thought I would based on how little algae I had to try and seed it. It was enough to fill a red plastic cup 1/3 of the way!
6DCB8BC1-48C9-49F9-B5BA-6F83D1B2E31D.jpeg
Hello,you still use it,what was your results on the phosphate and nitrate?


I am also needing to know. Is is worth doing? Planning on doing this first thing in the morning. Any update would be appreciated. Thanks
Shelley
 

dimsim

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Cool idea + thread! To get some more air/water interface action going on, maybe you could route an airline in through the outlet standpipe, and then back down (up and over so to speak) to one of those flexible airstone/bubble wand type of things (bent into a ring arrangement), so as to create a 'curtain' of bubbles upflowing against the inner surface of the screen. I think the air build up would still be able to escape the reactor through the outlet, but might result in some weird gurgling noises...?

Or, perhaps more simply, maybe an airline hose (w/valve + some kind of silencer) could be affixed to the pump intake to create an aspirating venturi (err... I guess this would be like a needlewheel, but just with a normal impeller), hopefully resulting in frothy/turbulent conditions.

Come to think of it.... a cheapo HOB protein skimmer could be modded fairly easily into what I'd imagine would be a pretty powerful algal turf scrubber. I'm thinking LED strip wrapped around the outside, along with maybe a submersible glass one hung in through the middle (where the foam would normally collect), such as to light both sides of a tubular screen (much like your design). Probably wouldn't want the bubble density too high though, as I'd imagine this might impede light transmittance to the screen (actually, unlike a skimmer, larger bubbles might be better in this case...).
Anyways, sorry for the long + rambling post; keep us posted on the algal harvests!
 

code4

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Cool idea + thread! To get some more air/water interface action going on, maybe you could route an airline in through the outlet standpipe, and then back down (up and over so to speak) to one of those flexible airstone/bubble wand type of things (bent into a ring arrangement), so as to create a 'curtain' of bubbles upflowing against the inner surface of the screen. I think the air build up would still be able to escape the reactor through the outlet, but might result in some weird gurgling noises...?

Or, perhaps more simply, maybe an airline hose (w/valve + some kind of silencer) could be affixed to the pump intake to create an aspirating venturi (err... I guess this would be like a needlewheel, but just with a normal impeller), hopefully resulting in frothy/turbulent conditions.

Come to think of it.... a cheapo HOB protein skimmer could be modded fairly easily into what I'd imagine would be a pretty powerful algal turf scrubber. I'm thinking LED strip wrapped around the outside, along with maybe a submersible glass one hung in through the middle (where the foam would normally collect), such as to light both sides of a tubular screen (much like your design). Probably wouldn't want the bubble density too high though, as I'd imagine this might impede light transmittance to the screen (actually, unlike a skimmer, larger bubbles might be better in this case...).
Anyways, sorry for the long + rambling post; keep us posted on the algal harvests!

I see where you are going with this ramble. Thanks you have given me some thoughts. Will see where I can go with them as soon as I finish up my other projects. Thanks again
 
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