How to Choose a Good Protein Skimmer - Aquarium Forum
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post #1 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-20-2015, 02:56 PM Thread Starter
 
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How to Choose a Good Protein Skimmer

How to Choose a Good Protein Skimmer
As the cost of buying a high-end protein skimmer for home tank now reaches $1.5K and yet there are no quantitative tests to justify its purchase. For this, and for fun as well, I've spent time to study the design principle, practice and evaluated skimmer products on the market for my own benchmarking and decision. This thread does NOT promote/demote any brands nor reveal any product names evaluated, simply provides a summary of what I think an efficient and cost effective skimmer should be and hopefully help fish geeks of this Forum to make a wise purchase decision by the following guidelines.

Principle in layman's term: Blow bubbles into the bottom of a column of water and fish wastes in the water will be swept away by the ascending bubbles to be collected on the top. More finer bubbles and more bubble ascending time would drag more fish wastes out by this skimming action.
How are bubbles generated: Bubbles generate by two ways: air diffuser with a air pump on the bottom of water column or alternatively, a venturi tube on the suction side of a water pump.

Pros and Cons: Air diffuser is 5 times slower than venturi (actual data measured) under same water flow rate in waste removal of the same design but requires no extra water pump to operate and is silent. Diffuser needs to be cleaned weekly and replaced every few months. The high efficiency of venturi bubbler is traded by the NOISY cavitation sound inside the venturi and extra power consumption. High end skimmers have good silencers but it's for tank owners' decibel reduction not for your poor tankmates because silencers are always out in the air. Constant high noise level may stress fish.
Efficiency tests: In a 5-gallon bucket with 3-gallon seawater add 20mg(2mL of a 1% PO solution) of Palmolive Ultra Concentrate (PO) dish washer detergent, put your skimmer in and turn it on, time it until no continuous bubbles coming out from the collection cup. A good skimmer will take less than 5min to pull all detergent out of the bucket, leaving absolutely no bubbles in the bucket. This bubble-free sate would occur prior to no bubbling in the collection cup. Most high-end commercial skimmers tested passed 10min mark, one passed 5min mark. All high efficiency skimmers are noisy to fish (push my ear to the tank to check) but not to human; most low ends are noisy to both. I also used FW to test efficiency. The FW results are very interesting, to be published later.
Shape of water column: Best fluid dynamic design is a circular cone,straight circular tube is a near 2nd, do not consider rectangular tube due to dead space and low/no RPM, thus low efficiency.

What is your RPM: Key to high efficiency of skimmers is a combination of tangential inlet and countercurrent flow design. A new quantitative measure of water cyclone spinning RPM is used to evaluate all skimmer products. Just measure the pump flow (G, in gph, normally 2x or higher of your tank volume) rate, water column diameter (D, in inches at where inlet located) and inlet tube id (r, in inches) with the formula below:



The higher RPM the better( Dyson vacuum commercial?) skimming efficiency, but after 400RPM, diminishing gains is reached with a tubular design.

So hopefully by now everyone knows how to pick a good protein skimmer or concluded as I did, make one by DIY, without the influence of metaphysics, alchemy and pseudoscience on the Web.

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post #2 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-20-2015, 07:30 PM
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Re: How to Choose a Good Protein Skimmer

I disagree big time. You left off very important things to a skimmer.....VERY IMPORTANT ITEMS!

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post #3 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-20-2015, 08:57 PM Thread Starter
 
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Re: How to Choose a Good Protein Skimmer

Welcome to spell it out. This how we don't get into alchemy and metaphysics.
I do have enough engineering and science training to analyze your proposal.
Thanks.

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post #4 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-20-2015, 08:59 PM
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Re: How to Choose a Good Protein Skimmer

You read to much old school. You don't know much about the new skimmers? And no, Im not going to spell it out. Tired of going back and forth with you.

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post #5 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-20-2015, 09:05 PM Thread Starter
 
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Re: How to Choose a Good Protein Skimmer

You mean needle-impeller type? This one is a whole new design of its own but everything else fluid dynamically is the same that why I did not even touch it, just like I did not evaluate square tube skimmers.

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post #6 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-20-2015, 09:26 PM
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Re: How to Choose a Good Protein Skimmer

You need to do a bunch more homework. Your not even in the ballpark. Most skimmers use Needle Wheel Impellers.
You evaluated Old School Skimmers, that are no longer in use today.

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post #7 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-20-2015, 09:44 PM Thread Starter
 
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Re: How to Choose a Good Protein Skimmer

Haha, I got it right. Yes, there are many new designs that improved efficiency and I have data to prove all that and I've searched a few new patents and patent applications of all these new designs before I got serious on picking what to evaluate the products on the market by which method. Please do not under estimate my efforts in handling these critical decision points in this fun project.

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post #8 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-20-2015, 09:55 PM
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Re: How to Choose a Good Protein Skimmer

Interesting. If you were evaluating current skimmers and how to pick them, you did it entirely the wrong way, and gave information on old school info. Most if not all today are done 2 significant ways. Thats it. Good luck, I've said enough.

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post #9 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-21-2015, 11:06 AM Thread Starter
 
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Re: How to Choose a Good Protein Skimmer

Scientific principles are eternal truth and fluid dynamics is one of them. Do not side-tract by this pointless discussion on new or old schools, pick a skimmer, test it to verify that it got your money's worth.

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post #10 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-21-2015, 02:21 PM
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Re: How to Choose a Good Protein Skimmer

You've got no idea what your talking about, and anyone reading this should beware, the info above does not have anything to do with new school skimmers and how they can and do operate. He's left off very key pieces of info, and this info is very important on how you choose a Skimmer. Beware of what you read. Im not here to pick this guy apart, he's making this to easy anways.
If you'd like to know. Ask Coral Bandit.

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post #11 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-21-2015, 02:38 PM Thread Starter
 
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Re: How to Choose a Good Protein Skimmer

Efficiency data is what counts......Cost /benefit ratio is your bottomline, data again.

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Re: How to Choose a Good Protein Skimmer

Oh, and also, can't wait to see your skimmer test results in FW.........Being as they do'nt work in FW..............Thus the reason FW folks don't know what they are or what they do. Because its a pointless piece of equipment for them to use.......
What year is this data your using???1970?? Not anything in this era I can tell you that right now.

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post #13 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-21-2015, 04:03 PM Thread Starter
 
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Re: How to Choose a Good Protein Skimmer

FW people don't spend big bucks on equipment, not skimmers not working on FW. Glad you got my attention again. Imaging you have a 400G FW tank with Polka dots and a few Arowanas...data on 2004. Stay tuned.

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Last edited by treliantf; 02-21-2015 at 04:10 PM. Reason: more info
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Re: How to Choose a Good Protein Skimmer

Ok, if you think that protein skimmers work on FW tanks, then Im going to post everything to show that you are wrong there.
Do You Need a Fish Tank Protein Skimmer? | Aquarium Care | Howcast
Why don't we use Protein Skimmer in freshwaterautolinker.com autolinking image tank?
freshwaterautolinker.com autolinking image Protein Skimmer--Anyone tried before?
Buy a Protein Skimmer for your Aquarium.

How much more proof does anyone need? I can go on.

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post #15 of 23 (permalink) Old 02-21-2015, 11:41 PM Thread Starter
 
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Re: How to Choose a Good Protein Skimmer

I think you send what I exactly expected: (read the Bold sentence)

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Re: Why don't we use Protein Skimmer in freshwaterautolinker.com autolinking image tank?
Reply #2 on: April 13, 2008, 11:15:02 AM
Yep, you could if you wanted to.

I purchased a cheap filter from Dr. Fosters & Smith that has a built in protein skimmer, just out of curiosity. It does a nice job of removing the oily protein build up on the surface in a tank that I have problems with, worked well except that the plants keep getting in the way and tangling with the equipment. Sort of silly because it's those same plants that are allowing the surface to get oily because they interfere with the filter flow around the tank. Smiley I suppose I could move the filter to the other side or trim the plants but I like to make things difficult for myself. lol
I have no problems with your english. Smiley

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Re: How to Choose a Good Protein Skimmer

You evidently can't read well. You need to read all the way through junior.......
This is why you fail. Then when I smoke you on this one, maybe just maybe, I'll tell everyone why you don't know a thing about how to choose a protein skimmer. Prolly not, because they'll see what you messed up saying they can use one on a FW tank....... LMAO!!!


End of conversation:

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Re: How to Choose a Good Protein Skimmer

You got it wrong completely, junior (I may be senior than you are)!
There is a due process, called "peer review" to fix this pop culture of cut and paste that created so many pseudoscientist (alchermists) and I'll beat them down one by one by data. I had been in scientific paper editing and I know how to do it. Stay tunned.

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Re: How to Choose a Good Protein Skimmer

So far you can't beat your way out of a wet paper bag. You still have skimmer choice all wrong!!
LH/ AIR INTAKE
BUBBLE PLATES
AND THE PUMPS ARE THE MOST IMPORTANT!!
YOU CAN TAKE A CRAP SKIMMER AND PUT IN A BUBBLE BLASTER AND BAM!!! YOU NOW HAVE THE GREATEST SKIMMER THAT YOU'VE EVER SEEN, NOW MATCH THAT WITH L/H AIR INTAKE, AND YOU REALLY GOT IT ROCKING.
NOW THAT I'VE SHOWN YOU HOW IT WORKS, LEARN A THING OR 2. YOU OLD SCHOOL DOG!!! THE PUMPS PUT INTO SKIMMERS RELATIVE TO THEIR SIZE HAVE ALL ABOUT THE SAME GPH!! THE DIFFERENCE IS THE NEEDLE WHEEL OR MESH IMPELLER
IN TODAYS DAY AND AGE YOUR SKIMMER CHOOSING IS BUTT BACKWARDS.
#1- LOOK FOR CONE SKIMMER
#2- LOOK FOR BUBBLE PLATE
#3-LOOK FOR L/H AIR INTAKE, THE HIGHER THE BETTER

i OUTA KNOW ALL THIS, I DID THE WRITE UP ON DOZENS OF SKIMMERS!! AND COMPARED THEM!!
NOW QUIT WASTING MY TIME, NEWB!!!

And if your a peer, then yo uneed to go back to school, and learn how to read and take instruction from a PRO!

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Re: How to Choose a Good Protein Skimmer

#1- LOOK FOR CONE SKIMMER
#2- LOOK FOR BUBBLE PLATE
#3-LOOK FOR L/H AIR INTAKE, THE HIGHER THE BETTER

Obviously YOU did not read well.
#1: Best fluid dynamic design is a circular cone,straight circular tube is a near..
#2: More finer bubbles and more bubble ascending time would drag more fish wastes..
#3: (G, in gph, normally 2x or higher of your tank volume) rate, water column diameter (D, in inches at where inlet located) and inlet tube id (r, in inches).
There are tons of data in my hands I just don't want to bother to go into details.

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Re: How to Choose a Good Protein Skimmer

#2- LMFAO, and where in there does it say Bubble Plate!!! NO WHERE!
#3- Incorrect again! The bigger skimmer pumps usually top off at a rate of 750GPH, TOP SKIMMERS!
Again, you haven't a clue how to use nor analyze nor give advice on Skimmers. Go stay at a Holiday Inn with Goby, the 2 of you could teach each other the art of bullshtology.
Im through with you. I've said my peace, and have proven you don't have a clue.
I disagreed, and came up with what people can solidly look up, not BS that you think you've scientifically thrown together and called data............
I've done...I will not comment again......

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