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Thread: DIY Algae Scrubber

  1. #1

    DIY Algae Scrubber

    I started this on UltimateReef so I thought I should share this with you here too. So, here are he details and pictures of my scrubber build...

    DIY Algae Scrubber

    So for this project I’ll be using…

    780x210mm Sheet of 3mm Perspex
    280x210mm Perforated plastic sheet (to be used as screen)
    1 x Rigid pipe per metre (25mm)
    1 x Hexagon adapter socket x female thread (25mm x 1/2")
    1 x Hosetail (16mm x 1/2")
    1 x End Cap (Glued) (25mm)
    2 x Elbow 90 degree (25mm)
    1 x Union Coupler (25mm)
    1 x Ehiem Compact 1000 pump
    1 x 16mm flexible hose

    Note: I have not decided on the lighting options yet

    From the spare piece of Perspex left over I have build the support housing for the “waterfall pipe”. I have constructed it from a single piece of Perspex which I marked up to the required measurements.

    I used a heat gun to bend along the blue lines into the shape of a box and then glued along the red lines to join the two ends together.

    Finally, to allow the pipe to rest on it I have cut a slot on both ends on the housing.

    Here are a couple of pictures of what it looks like when it complete…

    Connected the pipe pieces together to construct the waterfall pipe for the scrubber and cut a 4mm slot for the water outlet.

    Initially I started to glue the plumbing together but after only gluing a couple of pieces decided to use PFTE tape and just push fit the remaining pipes. This is so that I can take it apart if I need to.

    Then I marked out the slot on the pipe and used a Dremel with a grinding disc to cut it out.

    Here are a couple of pictures of the plumbing and the slot for the water outlet…

    And this picture shows how the plumbing will sit on the scrubber housing I built earlier.

    The screen was very easy. Cut a notch at each corner at the top of the screen where it will fit into the slot and a small hole just below each notch for attaching to the pipe with a cable tie.

    Here are some pictures to illustrate this…

    More to come...

  2. #2

    DIY Algae Scrubber

    Right then, I have had the scrubber running for 3 days now. The water isn’t flowing over the screen completely as I expected but it seems to be doing ok and there are no leaks. As for the lighting, I have temporarily turned my pod light into the light source for one side of the screen. This light is an energy saving 11W and 6700K full spectrum compact light.

    I know I’m supposed to seed the screen with some algae but I haven’t got around to doing that; don’t have significant amount of green algae to seed it with anyway. Having said that, there seems to be some discolouration of the screen in the area where the water has been running over it; possible signs of algae growth.

    Here are some pictures to illustrate this…

    More to come...

  3. #3

    DIY Algae Scrubber

    It’s now been a week and here are a couple of pictures to show you the state of the screen. I still haven’t had the time to sort out adequate lighting for the scrubber and home to put extra lighting this week.

  4. #4
    kcress's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Santa Cruz, California, USA

    Re: DIY Algae Scrubber

    Pretty cool!

  5. #5

    Re: DIY Algae Scrubber

    Algae Scrubber Update…

    It’s now been 2 week and here is a picture to show you the state of the screen. I have added an additional 11W and 6700K full spectrum compact light but these are not sufficient. I need to sort out adequate lighting for the scrubber but will have to wait until next year as I’m due to go on holiday soon.

  6. #6

    Re: DIY Algae Scrubber

    Is it too early to clean one side?

  7. #7
    Super Moderator
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Santa Monica, CA, USA

    Re: DIY Algae Scrubber

    Go ahead and start cleaning one side per week.

  8. #8

    Re: DIY Algae Scrubber

    Quote Originally Posted by SantaMonica
    Go ahead and start cleaning one side per week.
    Thanks, I'll have a go at doing that.

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