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Old 06-08-2004, 01:00 AM   #1
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Bio-Wheel with spraybar on Aquaclear 500 HOB

I've added a bio-wheel and a spray bar to help drive it, to one of my Aquaclear 500 HOB filters.
My wife saw the idea (Just the Bio-Wheel mod) on another forum and I decided to give it a whirl with some improvements.
I decided to add a spraybar and make some mod's to the way they had the bio-wheel attached to the filter.
I used two F160/170 bio-wheels, I trimmed the filter material on both by about a half inch enabling me to fit one axle thru both endcaps of the wheels with about a quater inch to spare and connected that axle and the other together with a plastic dowel drilled to take the ends of the axles making it one long wheel, this fits almost perfectly in the filter outflow.
I then measured out where the axles would need to sit and marked them, drilled holes in the filter and cut down to the holes forming slots for easy installation/removal of wheels.
I dropped the bio-wheel in and it worked like a charm, unfortunately the cover would not fit now so I cut it to fit around the wheel, problem solved and it looks good too if I do say so myself .

For the spraybar I used a small powerhead (170gph), some quater inch hard plastic tubing for the bar and soft plastic tubing to connect them together.
I measured off the hard tubing to fit the length of the bio-wheel with some extra and drilled small holes (small holes=better water pressure) spaced along the length of it and capped the end. Figured out where I wanted it to sit behind the wheel and drilled a hole thru the side of the filter to insert the spray bar thru. Connected the powerhead to the spraybar via the soft tubing and gave it a try.... it worked nicely.
I had to cut/drill a piece of flat plastic to hold the far end of the spraybar level and in line with the bio-wheel, this sits on the filter media (All we use are sponges) and is further held in place by the filter cover.

These are the test models and will be refined, I was using what I had on hand and was learning as I went along.
Next round I'll probably connect the two bio-wheels together with silicone plus drill the the endcaps themselves and insert the dowel thru them for better rigidity.
The spraybar will only have three or four holes for each section of filter material on the wheels instead of along the entire bar and will mount on the edge of the filter cover behind the bio-wheel so as to better direct the spray downward onto the wheel.

These mod's are working nicely but I know I can do better.

Work in progress......... Beware of mad fishkeeper!
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Old 06-10-2004, 03:08 PM   #2
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I'm a little confused. If the powerhead is running the spraybar, why do you need the AC 500? Just to hold the biowheels?

I was also wondering- do you get any spray from when the water from the spraybar hits the bio wheel?

Thanks,

-J
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Old 06-10-2004, 04:37 PM   #3
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Yes, the filter serves as the mount for the wheel and the outflow is the primary drive for the wheel.
If the filter quits the spraybar will keep running the bio-wheel and vice-versa thus keeping the bio-filter alive and working. Plus the the bio-wheels can become rather heavy after awhile and the filter outflow may not be enough to keep it turning if its on low-output.
By utilizing a smaller powerhead the pressure is not that strong as to mist or splatter much, also the spraybar is mounted flush under the filter cover and is pointing downward on to the wheel so any spray is asorbed by the filter media. My sponges sit slightly above the waterline and any spray is beneficial in keeping the top moist and the bio-filter active, kinda of wet/dry.
Its working beautifully and I'm going to convert the other AC500 as well with the improvements I learned doing the first.
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aquaclear, aquaclear 50, bio, bio-wheel, clear, eel, hob

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