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EvoKnvl

Guide to Installing an Aquaticlife 115 Skimmer into a Biocube 29, Chamber 1

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EvoKnvl

So here is my write up on installing an AquaticLife 115 Mini Skimmer into a Biocube 29, Chamber 1. Please feel free to leave any comments or suggestions. Also, feel free to add this to the Biocube Resource Guide if you deem it worthy.

 

I chose to put it in the 1st chamber since the water level doesn't change. The water level in the 2nd and 3rd chamber tend to drop as the water evaporates. The heater was relocated to chamber 3 as I already have chaeto and Chemipure Elite in chamber 2. Filter floss and egg crate were used instead of the stock filter as you will obviously not be able to use the original one. StevieT's Media Rack also works great in Chamber 2 in conjunction with this mod. So on with the install!

 

Step 1: Prep the tank

Remove the false bottom and the filter holder. To remove the false bottom, take a screw driver and press down on one corner. It should pop right out. To remove the rear filter holder, just wiggle it around and it should come out.

 

The parts should look like this

1.jpg

 

And what your chamber 1 should look like after the parts have been removed. I left the silicon glue on the back because I'm lazy...

2.jpg

 

Step 2: Prep the skimmer

So, the skimmer comes with 2 bracket pieces. Select the smaller of the two. Insert it into the top mounting clip on the skimmer. Push it as far as it will go

 

The brackets

3.jpg

 

Right side view. Bracket Installed. You may also notice in the picture the green tube. I saw someone else do this and it's a great idea. Since the adjustment knob is a real PITA to get to (esp if the hood is on,) this tube extends it further up. This makes it easier to adjust, if necessary. Cut it so it is the same height as the cup.

4.jpg

 

Step 3: Installation

Ok, so now it's time to install this thing. The suction cups and bracket should be facing the rear of the tank. Carefully slide it in. Now, when you get to the problem areas (as seen in the previous pic) you're need to help it through. It's a tight fit (and even tighter with the suction cups on.) You may have to gently move the false wall, in the front, forward to get these parts past. Just take your time and it'll get through.

 

Suction cups get in the way. The 1st time I installed the skimmer, I took them off. The 2nd time I reinstalled it (to take these pics,) I put them back in. It works. Don't know if it makes a difference, but you'll need to help them so they don't fold over on themselves and make it even harder to get through.

5.jpg

 

In place!

6.jpg

 

Step 4: Finishing touches

Secure the bracket using the mounting lock (totally forgot to take a pic, but I'm sure you can figure it out.) Also, place a piece of filter floss over the outlet so that microbubbles don't re-enter your tank. Plug it in. Adjust the bubble level as necessary. That's it! You're done! Unless you're using the hood, then continue on below!

 

Filter floss over the outlet and you can kinda see the lock, that secures the bracket, behind my stylish green tube

7.jpg

 

Step 5: If you have the hood

So the bracket that you used to secure the skimmer obviously sticks up over the rim. That means if you're using the hood, the bracket is going to make it stick up... So it's time to dremel, cut, file, sand, whatever you want! Basically you're going to extend the hole that was already cut out (for the wires,) adding another 1-2" (I don't remember the exact measurement.) After that, you're all done!!!

 

Template :P

8.jpg

 

Finished install from the back

9.jpg

 

Finished product from the top with the hood open

10.jpg

 

And closed (Like you haven't seen this before) :lol: :lol:

11.jpg

Edited by EvoKnvl
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jdmkid

nice let us know how that skimmer does

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nanew reefer

nice work lets see the skimmate it pulls!

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EvoKnvl
nice work lets see the skimmate it pulls!

 

I posted a pic of the skimmate in my other thread. Here you go... This was one week after installing it... I'm still adjusting the bubble level. You can see that the overflow in the center has a thick coating of crap in the inside. I cleaned it off since it was pretty nasty stuff...

 

IMG_0499.jpg

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crx2ner

nice right up, thanks... i'll be using this when i get this skimmer

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Strong

By putting the skimmer in the first chamber, are you lowering your GPH of flow through the sump? Are you seeing issues with water flowign around the skimmer and into chamber 2?

 

-Strong

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fishfrenzy

nice write up.... would the install be about the same if one were using the biocube nano skimmer?

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EvoKnvl
By putting the skimmer in the first chamber, are you lowering your GPH of flow through the sump? Are you seeing issues with water flowign around the skimmer and into chamber 2?

 

-Strong

 

Strong, don't notice a problem with water flow. The water level in chamber 2 and 3 are still the same. I assume your concern is that the skimmer is impeding the water flow into the back chambers causing the pump to push water out faster than it can go back into chambers 2 and 3? If so, it's not a problem. I've upgraded my pump to the Hydor Pico Evolution 1200 which pumps out 300gph as well.

 

Water flow around the skimmer seems fine. My filter floss is still picking up stuff as well.

 

 

nice write up.... would the install be about the same if one were using the biocube nano skimmer?

 

The Biocube Nano skimmer is a lot smaller and a different type. It's meant to fit in a 14 and a 29 so I don't think it's very difficult to install. However, I have heard that it's not a really good skimmer...

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gutterguy

Evo, so awsome to see you do this. I just bought this skimmer from a member here about 2 weeks ago and played with it for at least 90 min trying to get in. Same issues that u show trying to fit in. I got mine in but my hanging bracket is on the side, dont remember why i couldnt put the way u have but now that i know that it will go i will attempt to change. Also i played with levels and bubble output for the first day and finally decided to let it go and at about 6 days started foaming good and now after 2 weeks pulling dark green but still watery every 4 days. I am a believer in skimmers especially if you cant keep up on the weekly WC. I do about every 2 weeks and i think having the skimmer will definitly help. You cant beat this one for the price.

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Strong

Thanks for the reply. Yes, I was concerned about the water flow through the sump since I currently have the same skimmer, but in the second chamber. I may give this a try.

 

Thanks for the instructions.

 

-Strong

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bird

Nice. So the skimmer is still working to your satisfaction?

I am thinking about getting one myself.

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EvoKnvl
Nice. So the skimmer is still working to your satisfaction?

I am thinking about getting one myself.

 

So far, it's working great. I'll take another picture of the cup when I clean it again. It's definitely quieter than when I first got it. It's quieter than the fans, but after that, I would say it's the next thing in line. I can't really hear it when the lid is fully closed.

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bird
So far, it's working great. I'll take another picture of the cup when I clean it again. It's definitely quieter than when I first got it. It's quieter than the fans, but after that, I would say it's the next thing in line. I can't really hear it when the lid is fully closed.

sweet. I needed salt anyway so I ordered one today.

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Freakin

Heater in chamber 3 is a bad idea because of how drastically water level changes. Don't check it for a few days and it could be dry and burned up

 

Also, nice write up. I have the early model sapphire in my bc29 and it takes up the ENTIRE 2nd chamber. I want a media rack and fuge! Trying to decide if it's worth it to ditch the sapphire (already have intank media basket omgomgomg I can't use) and get the aquaticlife. Not sure if I want to drop the coin on the tunze 9002 and slim skimmer cup when I need to upgrade my lighting

Edited by Freakin

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EvoKnvl
Heater in chamber 3 is a bad idea because of how drastically water level changes. Don't check it for a few days and it could be dry and burned up

 

Also, nice write up. I have the early model sapphire in my bc29 and it takes up the ENTIRE 2nd chamber. I want a media rack and fuge! Trying to decide if it's worth it to ditch the sapphire (already have intank media basket omgomgomg I can't use) and get the aquaticlife. Not sure if I want to drop the coin on the tunze 9002 and slim skimmer cup when I need to upgrade my lighting

 

Yeah, I was worried about that... Since it's closed top, I don't lose that much water at all. I also stuck it really far down where the sponge used to be. Also, because of the weather here, I'm only using a 50w as well. In fact, I have it hooked up so that it only works on the night cycle. On the day cycle when the lights are on, the heater is off.

 

I was considering going with the Tunze as well, but after calculating the cost of the 9002, the StevieT cup and the media basket, I decided to try this route instead. It's been working great for me so far...

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Freakin
Yeah, I was worried about that... Since it's closed top, I don't lose that much water at all. I also stuck it really far down where the sponge used to be. Also, because of the weather here, I'm only using a 50w as well. In fact, I have it hooked up so that it only works on the night cycle. On the day cycle when the lights are on, the heater is off.

 

I was considering going with the Tunze as well, but after calculating the cost of the 9002, the StevieT cup and the media basket, I decided to try this route instead. It's been working great for me so far...

Yeah I've been reading insanely positive reviews of this thing the last hour or so. I may try to sell my bc29sapphire and buy one of these with the money. It would be nice if i could use the media basket I bought

 

Skimmer in chamber 1, media basket and fuge basket (w heater in fuge basket) in chamber 2, mj1200 in chamber 3. Think that would work as well as i hope?

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EvoKnvl
Yeah I've been reading insanely positive reviews of this thing the last hour or so. I may try to sell my bc29sapphire and buy one of these with the money. It would be nice if i could use the media basket I bought

 

Skimmer in chamber 1, media basket and fuge basket (w heater in fuge basket) in chamber 2, mj1200 in chamber 3. Think that would work as well as i hope?

 

I don't see why that wouldn't work. Remember that Chamber 2 & 3 will share the same water level. So you will still have to monitor it with the heater in there... Other from that, I don't see how that would be a problem...

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EvoKnvl

So pulled the cup today and took a pic. So this was from 5/27-5/31. I think I may lower the level a little bit. I did not adjust it at all since I first installed it.

 

CollectionCup53110.jpg

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EvoKnvl

Here's the latest... Lowered the bubble height a little bit... Looks better!!!

IMG_0520.jpg

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nanew reefer

NICE man.

 

Im getting closer to starting my build, this skimmer looks way better than the oceanic brand.

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evokid511

just about to order mine evo, you still liking it? im going to do the install the same way as yours but im a litle worried about the heater since im running an open top with a 150w MH but well see just gonn ahave to get an ato or something if i have to go away for a few days

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EvoKnvl

I'm loving it... I actually just pulled the cup again today... I did an experiment and turned it 90 degrees clockwise. Wanted to see if it made a difference... Didn't really notice anything, so I put it back the original way since I didn't feel like dremeling a hole out on the side. It's actually a little harder to get in that way as well...

 

With the open top, it is a bit of concern. I actually only run a 50w since my place is already a consistant 75-77 degrees. That puts it at 80-82 all the time. I did put it in the slot where the sponge used to be to get the heater as low as possible. Don't know how much that will help if you're running a 100w though.

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evokid511

yeah im running a 100w but i may downgrade to a 50 because i have it on a timer to only run at night when the temps would usually drop, during the day my light and a comp fan keep it steady at 80* so we'll see maybe a 50w is the way to go... where did you order your skimmer from?

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EvoKnvl

I bought mine locally from my lfs... That said, I see it at marinedepot for $47.99 right now...

 

Marine Depot

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evokid511

yeah thats where im thinking of ordering it, 55 shipped isnt bad gotta see if my lfs has got one in stock for about the same price first

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