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Old 08-16-2003, 08:00 PM   #1
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whats a protien skimmer?

havent gotten into salt yet but i got a fresh i may convert in the future... but what is a protien skimmer? i think it gets rid of waste or something? and if i bought one now can i use it in my freshwatter tank? i got a really messy 13 inch pleco
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Old 08-16-2003, 08:15 PM   #2
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A skimmer utilizes the natural higher surface tension of saltwater to remove disolved organics from the water.

This is how it works.

Water and air is mixed and pumped into a reaction chamber. This chamber is usually a long round tube. Within this chamber the micro air bubbles circulate and as they rise up the tube the bubbles with higher surface tension (ones with disolved organics in them) will start to stick to eachother. As they reach the top they continue to grow into larger and larger bubbles. These bubbles are then pushed up out of the main water column into a collection cup.

The resulting skum is a liquid that has a high concentration of organics and is usually the color of a dark tea.

Skimmers really do not work with freshwater because the surface tension of freshwater is much lower than that of saltwater. I have read in some books that if you wanted to use a skimmer on freshwater it would have to be very tall and have a very powerful water and airpump. The size of such a unit would make it unpractiable for all but the largest of freshwater displays.
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Old 08-16-2003, 08:17 PM   #3
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This >>article<< should answer most of your questions about protien skimmers and skimming.

Quote:
and if i bought one now can i use it in my freshwatter tank? i got a really messy 13 inch pleco
I have only seen skimmers work in FW on very dirty tanks, or tanks with alot of yellowing agents, like lots of driftwood, etc.. Even in those tanks there is not enough surface tension on the bubbles for efficient and effective skimming, for the most part they are useless on FW tanks.
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Old 08-16-2003, 08:29 PM   #4
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OFF TOPIC! but i dont care

We just passed a milestone.

Kevin just posted our 50,000th post!

Do I hear fireworks and a marching band in the background?
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Old 08-16-2003, 08:32 PM   #5
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Old 08-16-2003, 09:01 PM   #6
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Old 08-16-2003, 09:07 PM   #7
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Grats, AA.com!

You guys have an awesome site. Keep it up.
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