Is lifereef really the best skimmer?

JMM744

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I found a used one here in Ohio and bought it. Came with a mag 9 pump. I set it up on my 70 mixed reef and once I got it settled in have just let it run. Very impressed with the simplicity and fact they do not become obsolete. Honestly that’s why I am buying another for my big system. It’s the last one I will buy! No more buying and then needing parts and not finding them or not being able to resell them. I have 3 skimmers I can’t sell now and a 4th once my new lifereef shows up. . If a person bought the Lifereef to begin with it certainly would save them a lot of issues down the road. One and done!!
 

Silent

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I used to have the 4 foot tall VS3-48 lifereef skimmer with the Iwaki pump and their special Mazzei venturi. It was a beast but was HUGE and the pump used so much electricity. I ended up selling the whole thing for $300 locally. I don't miss it but I do miss the lifereef dual chamber calcium reactor I sold.
 

Combs1ng

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I am inexperienced with protein skimmers as I have never used one before. I am currently designing a large system and want to get as much right from the get go and am researching almost every night. I have read this entire thread as I am leaning towards a LifeReefer skimmer (was seriously thinking of the Tunze 9430 as well). But I jumped on Jeff's site and love all the beneficial aspects of his skimmer, especially the ease of use, little need for adjustments, and a great system to limit pod destruction. I have seen mention of an optional "flange" and also mention of a Mazzei Venturi intake. Could someone explain the need/benefit for the flange and difference between a standard Venturi and Mazzei?
 

DCR

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I am inexperienced with protein skimmers as I have never used one before. I am currently designing a large system and want to get as much right from the get go and am researching almost every night. I have read this entire thread as I am leaning towards a LifeReefer skimmer (was seriously thinking of the Tunze 9430 as well). But I jumped on Jeff's site and love all the beneficial aspects of his skimmer, especially the ease of use, little need for adjustments, and a great system to limit pod destruction. I have seen mention of an optional "flange" and also mention of a Mazzei Venturi intake. Could someone explain the need/benefit for the flange and difference between a standard Venturi and Mazzei?
The flange provides access to the inside of the cylinder for cleaning. I think it is standard on the larger skimmers you would be looking at. The Mazzei has a true venturi design with a gradual constriction and expansion versus the standard spa device which is just a restriction orifice. It will provide better pressure recovery which in theory allows you to achieve the same air draw with less motive fluid head (or flow). How significant the improvement is debated. I think Jeff says for the shorter skimmers (24-30") it is not worth it. For the taller units I think people think it is worth the additional cost.
 

saf1

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lg_upperflange_text.jpg


The flange is not optional, it is part of the design. I've had my 72" for over 5yrs on my 1100g system and love it.
Maybe today :)

Skimmers dating back to 1999 - 2000 it was an option. Trust me - I have one going that far back and it was an option. I asked Jeff before I installed it on my upgrade if anything major changed that would warrant a new one. He said no. Checked his books as to when I bought it and sent another message to say no - it is perfectly fine.

And it is - works wonders. Glad I spent the extra back then because it saved me money in my upgrade.
 

Water Dog

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Skimmers noted with the prefix SVS2 do not come flanged. Skimmers with the prefix SVS3 are flanged. With the flanged skimmers, in addition to allowing access to clean the body of the skimmer, you can also expand the capacity of the skimmer by making it taller. Jeff sells flanged expansion cylinders so your skimmer can be expanded to increase its skimming capacity.
 

dadnjesse

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I am inexperienced with protein skimmers as I have never used one before. I am currently designing a large system and want to get as much right from the get go and am researching almost every night. I have read this entire thread as I am leaning towards a LifeReefer skimmer (was seriously thinking of the Tunze 9430 as well). But I jumped on Jeff's site and love all the beneficial aspects of his skimmer, especially the ease of use, little need for adjustments, and a great system to limit pod destruction. I have seen mention of an optional "flange" and also mention of a Mazzei Venturi intake. Could someone explain the need/benefit for the flange and difference between a standard Venturi and Mazzei?
I just put the Mazzei Venturi on my SVS2-24. When I called Jeff he seamed reluctant to want to sell me one and honestly I can't tell the difference from the stock Venturi
 

JoshH

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lg_upperflange_text.jpg


The flange is not optional, it is part of the design. I've had my 72" for over 5yrs on my 1100g system and love it.
The flange is absolutely optional on the smaller versions otherwise I'm not sure what I got cause it doesn't have a flange ;Bored (Purchased 2016) Unless you were referring specifically to the larger models to which I'm not sure

Skimmers noted with the prefix SVS2 do not come flanged. Skimmers with the prefix SVS3 are flanged. With the flanged skimmers, in addition to allowing access to clean the body of the skimmer, you can also expand the capacity of the skimmer by making it taller. Jeff sells flanged expansion cylinders so your skimmer can be expanded to increase its skimming capacity.
Best explanation right there!
 
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lavoisier

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Maybe today :)

Skimmers dating back to 1999 - 2000 it was an option. Trust me - I have one going that far back and it was an option. I asked Jeff before I installed it on my upgrade if anything major changed that would warrant a new one. He said no. Checked his books as to when I bought it and sent another message to say no - it is perfectly fine.

And it is - works wonders. Glad I spent the extra back then because it saved me money in my upgrade.
Do you have a pic. Clearly, I have no idea what this optional flange is.:rolleyes:

Never mind! I just saw the post below yours. Yes, now I know what you are talking about. I have one which I used to get my skimmer to 72".
Skimmer.jpg
 

JoshH

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Do you have a pic. Clearly, I have no idea what this optional flange is.:rolleyes:

Never mind! I just saw the post below yours. Yes, now I know what you are talking about. I have one which I used to get my skimmer to 72".
The optional flange is what you have, the skimmer without the flange simply has a flat acrylic plate on top so it can not be disassembled...

20191202_134122.jpg


Oh btw I think you could still squeeze another extension on there ;)
 
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Chad3407

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Do you have a pic. Clearly, I have no idea what this optional flange is.:rolleyes:

Never mind! I just saw the post below yours. Yes, now I know what you are talking about. I have one which I used to get my skimmer to 72".
Skimmer.jpg
Why is the cup drain hooked the the Venturi?
 

lavoisier

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Why is the cup drain hooked the the Venturi?
That was an old pic the day I set it up (6 yrs ago). It took a couple of hours before I realized my mistake! :eek:

Here is the current set up with a CO2 scrubber. I also recently replaced the gate valve as the old one finally failed.

Skimmer set up.jpg
 

saf1

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Why is the cup drain hooked the the Venturi?
On mine, and assuming the rest, but the hose coming out of the top of the collection cup is for two reasons.

1 - is in the event of a overflow it will go back into the sump area or intake and not flood the house.
2 - it also cleans the venturi

Jeff is not a fan of draining the collection cup into a bucket or jug or anything other than the collection cup more or less. Mine also had an option valve to open/close the collection cup drain so I would always have to remove the cup. I've since added a John Guest valve on it to connect 1/4 tubing so open/close and drain as I see fit. Now I only remove the cup maybe once or every other month.

They really are a good skimmer.
 

Combs1ng

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The flange provides access to the inside of the cylinder for cleaning. I think it is standard on the larger skimmers you would be looking at. The Mazzei has a true venturi design with a gradual constriction and expansion versus the standard spa device which is just a restriction orifice. It will provide better pressure recovery which in theory allows you to achieve the same air draw with less motive fluid head (or flow). How significant the improvement is debated. I think Jeff says for the shorter skimmers (24-30") it is not worth it. For the taller units I think people think it is worth the additional cost.
Thank you DCR
 
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