Introducing the new Turbo Algae Scrubber! (Rev 4)

Discussion in 'Turbo's Aquatics' started by Floyd R Turbo, Sep 5, 2015.

  1. Floyd R Turbo

    Floyd R Turbo Super Duper Member R2R Supporter Gold Sponsor Toys For Kids 2016 Article Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    UPDATE: L4, L8 and L16 are planned for release in Mid-July. This is pending verification of all final parts (should be done by 6/30/16).

    >> CLICK HERE FOR PRICING AND WAITING LIST INFORMATION ON ALL SIZE UNITS <<

    Introductory pricing offer for larger units will continue until JULY 15th! Just contact me to get on the waiting list!

    To get on the list, open a support ticket by following the instructions here: Turbo's Aquatics - Ordering

    ^^ this is just as simple as sending me an email, which is listed on that page. You can provide your other information later if you want!

    Hello Reef2Reef!

    I've been wanting to become a Sponsor on Reef2Reef for a couple years but I had a feeling that the exposure would increase demand for my Algae Scrubbers, and I've never been able to keep up with demand as it is.

    Things are about to change though, as I am pulling the trigger on mass production!

    My goal has always been to come up with the most efficient, effective, and user-friendly Algae Scrubber available. I've spent countless hours over the last few years sketching these ideas down in the middle of raging brainstorms. These ideas have all finally come together into reality, and I am very happy to announce the 4th revision of my Turbo Algae Scrubber line of products!

    The following renderings are just rough concepts and are missing a few features, but I'm to the point in development where final 3D models are nearly complete and ready for manufacturing, so it's time to lift the curtain on what I have been working on!

    Here is a rendering of the fully assembled L2 Turbo Algae Scrubber (2 cube/day guaranteed filtration capacity):

    [​IMG]

    The Rev 4 (which I will, from now on, refer to as just the "Turbo Algae Scrubber") will be composed mainly of injection molded Black ABS parts. The false bottom (not shown) will be extruded ABS, and the Growth Chamber will be injection molded clear Polycarbonate.

    I have had a custom heat sink developed as well, which will be black anodized.

    Here is a rendering showing the movable/removable parts

    [​IMG]

    The new Turbo Algae Scrubber will be composed of a series of parts:
    • Base
    • J-channels (shown above, bonded to base, with cutouts for screen illumination)
    • Growth Chamber with dual 1.5" ID drains (O-rings and internal Divider, not shown)
    • False Bottom (not shown)
    • End Plates
    • Lid
    • Slot Pipe
    • Heat sink and Heat Sink End Caps
    • LEDs mounted on custom MCPCB (Metal Core Printed Circuit Board)
    • Custom multi-channel dimmable LED Driver board & Power Supply
    • Drain control valve assembly & sock/bag holder (not shown)
    Here is a rendering showing how the Growth Chamber and Slot Pipe fit together. In this view, the J-channel has been moved away so the interior of the Turbo Algae Scrubber can be seen (the J-channel is bonded to the base and will not be removable as it functions to hold the Heat Sink Assembly safely in place)

    [​IMG]

    And a further expansion of that rendering, showing how the Growth Chamber slides out the end

    [​IMG]

    The Slot Pipe itself is something that I spent a lot of time thinking about, until it finally hit me one day while I was sitting in a coffee shop while my stepson and his friends were waiting for a concert to start. That's when I came up with the design, and subsequently coined the term SquarePipe.

    [​IMG]

    SquarePipe solves the problem with a slot that is cut into a piece of pipe - the pipe tends to pinch closed in the center over time. SquarePipe provides extra rigidity to prevent this from occurring, and also integrates Light & Spray Blocking into the Slot Pipe itself. Prior to this, I developed a snap-on Light & Spray Blocker that is good for use on any 3/4" PVC pipe

    I still have a few hundred feet of Light Blockers for you DIYers - it's one of the best parts I've developed up until now, and it's only $10/foot and $5 shipping (Lower 48)

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    The Growth Chamber is a lift-and-slide-out design that seals into the base. This is achieved by way of two drain extensions, each with a double o-ring seal (O-rings not shown). Removal of the Growth Chamber is as simple as removing the Lid and one End Plate, then lifting up on the Growth chamber (about 1") and then sliding it out the end of the Base assembly.

    [​IMG]

    Not shown in the above rendering are 3 things:

    1) the false bottom, which is an extruded ABS part that is flat on top, with legs to keep it above the drain. There will also be tabs formed into the inside of the Growth Chamber to keep the False Bottom in place.

    2) O-rings, as previously described

    3) A divider between the two drains. The left drain is located in the center of the main section of the Growth Chamber - right below the screen. The right drain is an Emergency Drain. The divider is a molded-in-place wall, about 1"-2" in height, that will be located right next to the Emergency Drain. More on the purpose of this divider later on...

    The Slot Pipe is formed such that it fits snugly in U-shaped cutouts formed into the Growth Chamber. The Slot Pipe has a matching U-shaped form at each end so that there is no mistake that the Slot is pointed straight down at all times.

    [​IMG]
    In this much more awesome rendering (thanks Dan!), you can see how the growth chamber interior in a lot more detail. Tabs for False Bottom, Divider, glands for o-rings,etc. Also shows the o-ring lead-in on Base, channels in Base for locking in the End Plates (they also lock into the J channels), and a slot pipe cross section. Also if you look close you can see another feature, the bottom of the Growth Chamber is sloped toward the drain, so that when you shut off flow, all the water will drain out instead of pooling in the corners (and running out as soon as you tip it)

    [​IMG]

    Another cross-section view: this one shows the J-Channel & Base assembly (these form grooves for sliding in the light fixture), and the lid and SquarePipe cross section - the lid will hold everything together as well as keep water that condenses on the lid from getting out, via a drip tab. If you look closely, you can also see the tab sticking off the End Plate that locks into the J channel. So, you put the Growth Chamber in place (with Slot Pipe installed) and then put the End Plates on, and the lid on top and it's all locked together. Note that the cutouts for the light fixtures aren't shown (the rectangular cutout in the J-Channel).

    [​IMG]

    The last thing not shown is the Growth Substrate, or Screen. At this point in time, I am working on development of a new technique that will mean I don't have to rough up plastic canvas anymore. Because, it sucks. Especially when you have done hundreds of them. What you might notice is that there is no rotatable ring. Well...I can't reveal EVERYTHING quite yet, can I?

    Here's a few features and benefits of my new Turbo Algae Scrubber:
    • Dimensionally, it's actually smaller than my previous versions, which has the Emergency Drain on the side (elbow down).
    • Heat Sinks with End Caps installed slide into a rail assembly on each side, and can be left there indefinitely
    • Heat sinks do not need to be removed to view growth: an End Plate can be removed
    • Slot pipe locks into notches on Growth Chamber (with vibration isolation)
    • Lift-and-Slide-Out Growth Chamber means the new version can be installed in places with as little as 8" from top of sump to bottom of stand
    • Dual Drain design allows for extended growth period without the danger of overflow
    • Drains are 1.5" ID - meaning, huge flow capacity
    • Base pipe extensions are 2" OD for standard US PVC pipe
    • Drain valve assembly (under development still) will allow for easy "tuning" of the drain to achieve dead-silent operation
    A bit about the LED fixtures:
    • Heat Sinks are a custom profile extrusion, with locking rails on each end (so they can be used for multiple sizes of scrubbers, like the L4 and L8)
    • LEDs used are top quality Philips Luxeon 660nm Deep Red and SemiLED Hyper Violet
    • LED Driver is extremely robust, developed specifically for me by Steve's LEDs using their Bucking Linear 700mA chip.
    • Driver has on-board potentiometers for individual channel dimming (3 channels)
    • Driver has a port for an external dimming knob
    • Levels for individual channels can be set on the board, then dimmed in unison with the knob
    • Driver has input ports for PWM dimming control (which means it's Arduino Ready)
    • Driver has a power out jack that can be used to power either an Arduino-based controller (such as a Typhon) or an Apex interface board (so that you can control the LED dimming level with an Apex); this means you have a single-point power connection to the LED fixtures.
    I'm probably forgetting a bunch of things, but, eh.

    The L2 size of the new Turbo Algae Scrubber product line should be available in January and the current plan (SUBJECT TO CHANGE) is that it will be initially priced at $399 - that's the price of my previous version.

    Anyone who has been a customer can attest to my level of customer service. If you aren't happy, I'll do everything I can to help you out, or make it right. I've never really offered any written warranty because to me, a warranty is only as good as the guy providing it. I suppose I'll have to come up with one though because I've had brick & mortar stores asking me for years to carry my Algae Scrubbers, and this version will be carried in stores, and will be eventually be available in stores internationally.

    I will also be starting a companion thread to this one that outlines the process for getting on the Wait List for your Turbo Algae Scrubber

    So, that's it for now folks!

    If you have any questions, ask them!

    Thanks!
    Bud
     
    Last edited: Jun 21, 2016
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  2. Floyd R Turbo

    Floyd R Turbo Super Duper Member R2R Supporter Gold Sponsor Toys For Kids 2016 Article Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    Related to the above Announcement:

    Turbo Algae Scrubber Models and Availability Dates

    The L2 will be the first Rev 4 Turbo Algae Scrubber available and is currently slated to start shipping around the end of January.

    Plans are also in the works for the L4 and I expect that model to be available in the early Spring 2016. If there is enough demand for it, the L8 will also go into production at the same time or shortly thereafter.

    Note: the naming convention "L2" "L4" etc is subject change, but physical sizes will stay the same

    Limited-Time Introductory Pricing: REVISED DATES

    I will be offering Introductory Pricing for the roll-out of the new Turbo Algae Scrubbers!

    Introductory pricing is only guaranteed to be available to those who are on the Wait List prior to January 1, 2016, or the first unit ships (whichever comes first). I reserve the right to implement MSRP and/or MAP pricing at any time after 1/1/16.

    Introductory Pricing has yet to be finalized, as I am waiting on the final production quotes; I will update this post with the prices when everything is ready to go ("soon") and bump the thread accordingly. However, it will very likely not be less than my current pricing, which is:

    L2 (2 cube/day guaranteed filtration capacity): $399
    L4 (4 cube/day): $549
    L8 (8 cube/day): TBD

    Shipping prices are also yet to be determined because I am working on the packaging means, which will hopefully reduce my historical shipping rates. I expect the L2 to ship for around $25-$30 and the L4 to ship for around $35-$40, but that's just a guesstimate at this time (and those are lower than my current shipping prices, generally). Those are prices for the USA Lower 48 only.

    **Introductory pricing is for personal purchases only; if you have a brick & mortar store and wish to stock or offer Turbo Algae Scrubbers, please contact me via conversation.

    The Wait List & Advanced Payments

    I have historically refrained from taking down payments or advanced payments. Part of this is due to PayPal refund policies, or refund policies related to any kind of pre-payment for that matter. But mainly, it's because life is unpredictable, and delaying orders after payment is made, meh, not so good! :eek:

    If you think you want one when they come out, please let me know either by posting in this thread, or start a conversation with me. There is no commitment on your part, and no down payment required - it just holds your place in line. I will not accept a down payment in order to get you to the front of the line. Priority is solely based on when you requested to be on the Wait List!

    By the time I have units in stock and ready to ship, I will have my shopping cart system up and running. By requesting to be added to the wait list, you will be price-locked into the introductory pricing for a minimum of 2 weeks after you receive the Shopping Cart link. When your price-lock expires, the then-current pricing will apply (as if you were never on the Wait List).

    For example: You request to be on the list today. Your turn comes up and you receive the link on January 10th - you will have until at least January 24th to place your order.

    I'll keep the cart invisible unless you have a direct link to it (or password-protected) so that you can place your order prior to anyone who has not requested to be on the list. I will release the link in batches, so the first 10 on the list will get a few days to place their order, then the next 10, and so on. This way I won't get overwhelmed with having to ship 50 orders right away, and you will get your Turbo Algae Scrubber in a timely manner from the date you make payment! :)

    Why all this hullabaloo you say? :confused: Well...

    A bit about me

    I have a passion for this hobby and a passion for entrepreneurialism. Every now and then, I get the question "when are you going to quit your day job??"...but I find that people overestimate the size of this hobby. I have a full time job that I won't be walking away from anytime soon (part owner), a wife & 4 kids (7, 13, 16, 19), I'm heavily involved in my local Reefkeeping club (Webmaster, Treasurer, Fest Coordinator, etc), I'm a soccer coach...so yeah, life is busy!! All I ask is your patience! :cool:
     
    Last edited: Dec 8, 2015
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  3. Jlobes

    Jlobes Well-Known Member

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    NICE. I was wondering if you were gonna post up over here on R2R as well. looking good, like the improvements and latest ver.
     
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  4. Maximus

    Maximus Well-Known Member

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    I have an L2 now but can't wait for the new generation one! Love my current L2 but I always like the latest and greatest! Put me on the list for the new one!!
     
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  5. Floyd R Turbo

    Floyd R Turbo Super Duper Member R2R Supporter Gold Sponsor Toys For Kids 2016 Article Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    Done!

    Can someone check out a link for me? I tried embedding a "conversation" link but I can't test it as one cannot start a conversation with yourself, and it gives me a "user not found" error instead of "you cannot start a conversation with yourself" error

    NVM I figured it out
     
    Last edited: Sep 5, 2015
  6. MikeyB

    MikeyB Well-Known Member

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    Nice Bud! You have me on the list right from when i originally sent you a pm over on your algae scrubbing forum right?

    Gonna send you a pm as well as i have a question
     
    Last edited: Sep 5, 2015
  7. Floyd R Turbo

    Floyd R Turbo Super Duper Member R2R Supporter Gold Sponsor Toys For Kids 2016 Article Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    Yes, I do have you on the list already @MikeyB!
     
  8. Shep

    Shep Acan Connoisseur Staff Member Team R2R R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Photo of the Month Award

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    Looks awesome, possible suggestion for you. It would be really helpful if you did a rendering of it installed w/arrows for flow directions and labels. I'm pretty interested in it
     
  9. chris31759

    chris31759 Well-Known Member

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    Hi Bud. I see the commercial model is coming along nicely. I see you have added even more features. Looks great. I am sure the s rubber will be well received.
     
  10. ReefMadScientist

    ReefMadScientist Well-Known Member

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    I'd be willing to test this out on my tank. I am tired of algae issues in my main display with undetectable PO4, no amino acids being dosed, and light feeding. Still algae persist.

    Would be nice to add one of these to direct algae growth in one area.

    One question, how you one replace or clean the unit?
     
  11. Floyd R Turbo

    Floyd R Turbo Super Duper Member R2R Supporter Gold Sponsor Toys For Kids 2016 Article Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    Ok this is really ugly but it cover the question, I think!!
    Cutaway 1 flow.jpg

    Thanks! I'm not sure what else I could add to it, I'll have to go through my stack of sketches and see if I forgot anything

    That's the idea!

    In the janky sketch above, you see the screen. This is where the algae grows, and it's removable. So you either 1) lift out the screen/pipe or 2) lift out the entire Growth Chamber, then remove the screen/pipe at the sink (or wherever the other half approves of you doing this) and scrape off the growth, rinse, reassemble
     
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  12. Shep

    Shep Acan Connoisseur Staff Member Team R2R R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Photo of the Month Award

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    Any way we could cap off the sump exit and have it flow back to the tank? I do not have a sump :(
     
  13. Floyd R Turbo

    Floyd R Turbo Super Duper Member R2R Supporter Gold Sponsor Toys For Kids 2016 Article Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    You can install it on top of the tank, but it's not the most ideal location just because of the flow and trying to control bubbles, but I run one that way (a rev 1). You can also shelf-mount it and pump water up to it and let it gravity drain, but that makes controlling bubbles a little worse even.

    Bubble control is one thing I didn't discuss, that's part of the drain control valve that I'm working on. The method I use now (a big single-union ball valve and a filter sock) is very effective, but bulky and not perfect. I like perfect.
     
  14. ReefMadScientist

    ReefMadScientist Well-Known Member

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    Let me know when you have a few concepts ready. I want to try it out.
     
  15. TaylorPilot

    TaylorPilot Well-Known Member

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    Everything looks great Bud, and even better than I had envisioned. I think you are going to bring algae scrubbers to the main stream with the product. Look forward to seeing your success!
     
  16. Floyd R Turbo

    Floyd R Turbo Super Duper Member R2R Supporter Gold Sponsor Toys For Kids 2016 Article Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    I've been making these for over 3 years, this is the 4th version so I know that it works conceptually. I had acrylic parts CNCd for a few prototype L2s and L4s but cutting the gland/groove in the drain pipe of the Growth Chamber is not as easy as you think (cutting an exact 1/8" depth cut in 2" OD 1.5" ID acrylic tube with a router...yeah...). The drain seal (o-ring) design works, it's just that there is a very fine tolerance range where the o-ring is too loose (prone to leaking) and too tight (hard to push the 2 parts together). Then, getting 2 grooves just right on 2 pipes, then cutting them off on the ends to bond perfectly perpendicular, THEN the drain pipes they sleeve into being also cut to fit perfectly perpendicular, THEN making sure that the spacing is correct between the 2 drains - these are nearly impossible to make by hand, let alone in a timely manner and have a high level of quality. So as far as prototypes go, I'm almost past the point where that would reveal anything. When I started going into discussion with the fabricator about dimensional tolerance possibilities, shrinkage, etc and then got my CAD modelling guy on board, that's when it really came into place fast and made me realize that fussing with a hand built prototype wasn't worth it. But I might still have something knocked out on a 3D printer as a non-functional mock up.

    I should have the sample run of injection molded parts sometime in late October/early November, as long as I can get all the fine details in place on the models soon, so that's where my focus is, rather than - hopefully before the GIRS Fall Fest, where it will then be publicly debuted.
     
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  17. cthedaytrader

    cthedaytrader Well-Known Member

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    Looks awesome, can't wait to get mine. I think this is going to be exactly what I need to polish my tank off and keep up with feedings.
     
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  18. ReefMadScientist

    ReefMadScientist Well-Known Member

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    I am down. Let me know when.
     
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  19. charleslotz

    charleslotz Well-Known Member

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    Add me to wait list .... Please ...would like a custom size to fit my sump pm when ready...
     
  20. Floyd R Turbo

    Floyd R Turbo Super Duper Member R2R Supporter Gold Sponsor Toys For Kids 2016 Article Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    @charleslotz I can put you down on the general wait list, as for the custom size, do you have a really large system, or just a complex/constrained sump?

    FYI the way the unit will be made, the base will be easy to mount on rails spanning across a sump. I'm looking into having a modular rail system manufactured as well - I currently make something by hand out of acrylic, customized to the destination system.

    The current idea I have for the modular system would be 2 parts that slide together and can be easily cut to fit, something like this, where the main brace is what the scrubber sits on, and the T-Support slides into it to give it rigidity and load support capability (the L4, full of algae, can weigh in the range of 15-20lb)

    Bracket 1.JPG

    Bracket 2.JPG
     
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