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- Jun 7, 2011
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- West Des Moines, IA
In my true form, I thus reveal information in a really long and rambling post
- Rev 5 due out in
- It's gonna rock
- You really should read all of this post
- Mainly, changes are so I can make them faster and meet demand
- Having a day job sucked and was holding me back
- Instead, I now own/part-own 3 businesses and still don't sleep much, but it's better quality sleep
- Get on the list with no commitment by shooting me a PM
- If you can't wait I have discounted "Ding & Dent" Rev 4 units available while supplies last
- Here's some really small text. Here's some more that you can't see unless you highlight it. It's like a hidden track on a CD.
APRIL 2020 UPDATE:
Insert boilerplate "COVID-19 has totally hosed my plans" statement. Yes, right now everything has come to a screeching halt; truth be told, I was running behind on the design, kept coming up with better ideas and solutions, and got very busy with other things in life as well.
In mid to late March, when everything really hit the fan, I re-purposed my workshop (which has a full size 100W industrial laser cutter) and I started making Face Shields for Medical Workers and Emergency Management groups. Short version, I'm completely slammed. And in true engineer-businessman fashion, I have developed a good product at a decent price, compared to a lot of other companies making there (of which there are now quite a few).
So until this crisis is over, I'll be making 10,000-30,000 Face Shields per week. Everything else is on hold. Sorry about that. If you gotta move on, I get it. But still, Rev 5 will be worth the wait. Honestly I think the Reef Aquarium hobby is going to come to a screeching halt for 6-12 months, so I'm pulling back and making sure I can keep a roof over my family's head and food on the table for now.
If you are interested or know anyone in the health care world that would be interested in high quality, cleanable and reusable Face Shields at a fair price, have them visit my website at
Yeah, I scored that URL big time, can't believe it was available. I had to check my spelling of "shield" like 20 times, then I bought the version with "sheilds" as well, just in case.
Original post from December 11, 2019:
Anyone who has sent me an email inquiry over the last few months knows about this, but I was holding off on the public announcement until I was sure about a few design aspects!
While I can't let the cat completely out of the bag quite yet...
Rev 5 is scheduled for release in early 2020! I'm shooting for late February to early March. The exact date will depend on some production lead times and parts vetting, so I will keep this first post updated as often as I can.
** UPDATE ** As of February 5, 2020: the release date has slid to mid- to late-April.
My goal has always been to consider every aspect of the Algae Scrubber concept, and come up with a comprehensive solution that is easy to install and maintain. I feel like I hit the mark pretty well with Rev 4. The issue was that I created a bit of a monster when it came to fabrication - I have a lot of fine details and quite a few work-arounds that were the result of the parts not quite working together exactly as planned, along with some part production issues (like tolerances, etc). This resulted in excess production times and huge lead times. I've learned many lessons since releasing Rev 4 in early 2016, so it's well past time for a makeover. So what has been the holdup?
Simple - Life. I've been doing acrylic work and building Algae Scrubbers as a side gig since late 2011, I've always had a full-time job and full-time family. While I still have the full-time family, the "job" part has been in a radical state of flux...
Long story short, I went from being part-owner of a multi-discipline consulting engineering firm to the sole owner of my own one-man engineering firm over the last 2 years after a failed merger/acquisition. So essentially, my "day job" went away.
Then, earlier this year, I had the opportunity to team up with @[email protected] and we formed @CWT Aquatics where we designed a series of sump that are compatible with both of our Algae Scrubbers, as well as ATOs, custom sumps, frag tanks, aquariums, and anything else we might come up with for the aquarium industry.
Incidentally, you can buy one of our sumps from
@Bulk Reef Supply
Bulk Reef Supply - Saltwater Aquarium Supplies for Reef Tanks
Free Shipping on Everything, Rewards, Free Swag, Price Matching & Free Returns.
But enough of that, let's talk about Rev 5! Here's a partial list of the changes I'm working on:
1) Light fixture form factor change
- New heat sink
- Modular design allows for literally any size array
- Sealed (but no, you won't be able to submerge it)
- Revised mounting method
- New power supply
- New LED board & Driver design
- Step-dimming (instead of analog potentiometer dimming)
- "Rail" design will be maintained and improved
- You will still be able to slide fixtures to the side to view growth
- Working on the ability to allow for easy removal of the entire side panel & light fixture for maintenance
- i.e. you will be able to remove the growth chamber from the side, in addition to sliding out the end or lifting out the top
- Allows for installation in spaces with nearly zero clearance for maintenance without having to fully remove the scrubber
- No change to the spectrum
- The new fixture function the same as the Rev 4 lighting
- At least initially, this will not be backwards compatible with the current Rev 4 design
- Compatibility is possible, but would require development of adapter parts
- Brand new concept for water distribution
- Solves a few minor issues that customers have mentioned
- Shooting for both Metric and Imperial compatibility
- Super secret so I can't tell you anything else yet.
- neener neener neener
- Going after a patent on this one so no one else can rip it off or copycat it **AHEM**, or at least if they do, they can't stop me from making it (since that's really all patents are good for these days...)
- Backwards compatible with Rev 4
- Still troubleshooting this one, so the Mortar Screen might survive to Rev 5 for a short time
- Primary driver for this is that is sucks making screens
- On the flipside, my right arm gets pretty buff every time I make a large batch of scrubbers
- Also super secret
- Backwards compatible with Rev 4 (when used with new Slot Pipe)
- Hard to explain, so this one will just have to wait until the reveal
- May be backwards compatible with Rev 4
- Again, another part that is kind of a pain in the **** to make
- Will still allow for remote-control of the valve position for installations where the drain area is not easily accessible
- Will not look "trailer park" anymore (I had one customer call it that, in a funny haha way)
- Backwards compatible with Rev 4
- Yet another part that was great on paper, but takes way too much time to assemble
- Otherwise will function the same and will look a bit prettier
- Backwards compatible with Rev 4
I've already started an "interest list" for anyone wanting first crack at a Rev 5 unit. Shoot me a PM here if you would like to be added to the list! There is no commitment and no pre-payment required. Once I have a firm delivery date, I'll start taking orders.
Pricing: There will likely be a slight price increase for all units. I've managed to keep prices stable ever since releasing Rev 4, but material costs have gone up. For anyone who gets on the Interest List before the official release date (which is still TBD as of this post on 12/8/2019) you will get the opportunity to purchase it at the current Rev 4 standard retail price, which is as follows:
The latest version of my Turbo Algae Scrubbers is referred to as the "Rev 4" - The L2, L4 and L8 are all in production! The L16 is currently under very limited production - contact me if you are interested in this size. In order to inquire about a unit, get
L2: $399 + $25 shipping
L4: $549 + $35 shipping
L8: $849 + $45 shipping
** Shipping rates are subject to change and are for the US Lower 48 only. All other rates are quoted on an individual basis. I reserve the right to discount the shipping to sweeten the deal. This text is really small.
Now that that's out of the way, let's talk about Rev 4
I still have a handful of parts in stock, but they're not all "perfect". Some heat sinks have dings and imperfections, I have some growth chambers that didn't quite pass my QC (like discoloration, scratches, etc) and then there's the "new version is right around the corner" thing...I hate being the guy that buys something only to find out a new version is coming! In light of all of that, I'm offering Rev 4 L2s, L4s, and L8s at a 10% discount off the normal retail prices, and I'm also throwing in free shipping within the lower 48, and the equivalent discounted shipping for International customers. So for those of you who do not want to do the pesky math, that means you can get a "ding & dent" Rev 4 at the following prices:
** As noted above, but instead now in really REALLY small text, international customers will receive the equivalent discount on shipping
Note that I prefer that international customers wait for Rev 5, due to the following:
I will also offer anyone who buys a current Rev 4 design to get free upgrades for anything that is listed as backwards compatible in the Rev 5 features list above (basically, everything except the new light fixture). I would only ask you to pay shipping (this mainly why I prefer international customers to wait for Rev 5...)
This offer will run until I run out of parts (and I don't have a lot...). This offer is not valid for the L16, which I will be discontinuing in it's current form. Rev 5 is set up for the possibility of an L12 and L16, but that will be down the road a bit, and that would be longer units instead of taller units. Easter Egg: Incidentally, the new slot pipe design is intended to solve the issue with uneven flow along a really long slot due to the high flow rate and pressure issues.
I will wrap this up with a request: for anyone currently using a Rev 4, please let me know if you have a recommendation for improvement. I always try to think of everything, but sometimes a different perspective helps. If you give me an idea that I haven't considered, and if that ends up being another improvement, I'll treat you right!