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Old 02-21-2003, 05:34 PM   #1
DHS
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Idea for a lift system

I've been reading alot about air lift systems to get pods from a sump to the main tank without chopping them to bits. From what I've read though air lifts only seem to have a short head level....so I came up with the idea below. Basically I plan on having a 1/4" pipe leading about half way into the refugium (?) that will connect to a Y piece. Now the main pipe will be 1" and the water flow will be pushed by a Mag 7....I'm just wondering if anyone thinks this idea will work or if I'll just be loosing to much presure for it to be useful. Any ideas would be greatly appriciated.

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Old 02-21-2003, 06:30 PM   #2
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I really think the whole pods get chopped to bits idea is a bit blown out of proportion.

Sure I can see some of them getting chopped up but most of them are very small and I can see where many of them would be able to get past the impellers relitivly safely.


One thing I see would be that if/when power goes out will the 1/4" pipe from the refuge get filled with air? if so would the pull from the water flowing past the "Y" fixture be enough to syphon up the water from the refuge?

Also would the pump push water past this Y fitting or would the water end up flowing back down into the refuge?


I guess trying it out is the only way to definatly answer these questions.
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Old 02-21-2003, 07:12 PM   #3
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The main idea behind this is so that my larger pods (which I'm proud of) won't get chopped up....least that's the plan. As for the questions:

Quote:
if/when power goes out will the 1/4" pipe from the refuge get filled with air?
following the basic principles of gravity I expect that yes it will fill with air to a certain point.

Quote:
if so would the pull from the water flowing past the "Y" fixture be enough to syphon up the water from the refuge?

Also would the pump push water past this Y fitting or would the water end up flowing back down into the refuge?
Following basic laws of least resistance, when the pump turns back on a slight amount of water would fill the 1/4" inlet tube enought to push all the air out. from that point on water would follow the wider path (ie the 1" tube) thus once again drawing out the little pods with no ill effects.

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Old 02-21-2003, 09:22 PM   #4
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Ok. Glad to see you konw more about fluid dynamics than I.

Good luck and report back how it works.
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Old 02-21-2003, 09:27 PM   #5
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Sounds like you're trying to get a venturi effect similar to what some skimmers use. It might work as long as the venturi was designed properly. I don't know if the sizes of pipe you're planning to use are in correct proportion. It'll be interesting to see how well it works out though. I think, with some tweaking, it could work. How will the fuge be supplied with water?
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Old 02-21-2003, 10:17 PM   #6
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Actually loganj thats exactly where the full idea came from....the idea of the airlift started it but staring at my new skimmer the air intake gave me the idea. As for the pipe sizing I'm using the idea of the OD being 1/4" and the ID being about 3/16"...so I hope that it works. But if anyone knows more about tubing and lifts of this type I'd love to hear the info. As for the fuge its water is being supplied from the sump, where it is attached to it. When I finish the full layout of the tank ~> sump ~> tank layout I'll put the diagram up.

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Old 02-21-2003, 10:47 PM   #7
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It sounds as if the air lift will work just the same way an air brush works. The flow of the water thru the 1inch pipes sucks water thru the 1/4inch pipe?
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Old 02-22-2003, 11:24 AM   #8
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That's what I was thinking also. I think the inlet for the line coming from the fuge will have to be relatively low or there may not be enough suction to pull water from the fuge into the main return line. What you might do is take a close look at a Python or Lee faucet pump and try to design your system in a similar fashion. You might even be able to cut one of these apart and incorporate the center part containing the venturi into your setup. Keep us posted anyway....you've definitely got my attention with this project!
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Old 02-22-2003, 10:00 PM   #9
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I am thinking also, if you extend the tubing into the T up in the 1inch pipe about 3 inches, you will greatly improve the suction on the 1/4inch tube because of the speed of the water going by the tubing inside the pipe not technically on the outside.. basically like this


|.........| Water flow to tank
|.../ /..|
|./ /....|
|/ /.....|<----Tubing inside of pipe
/ /......|
/........|
|........|
|........|
|........| From pump


This comes from the theory of air brushes and Auto body spray guns...??????
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Old 02-23-2003, 11:00 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DHS
Following basic laws of least resistance, when the pump turns back on a slight amount of water would fill the 1/4" inlet tube enought to push all the air out. from that point on water would follow the wider path (ie the 1" tube) thus once again drawing out the little pods with no ill effects.

Unfortunately I believe your least resistance is going to be back down the 1/4" inlet tube do to the distance your lifting the water. You will get water back up the return but I don't think it will draw water out of the 1/4" tube but will rather force water into the tube and back down to the refuge. The reason the Python water change systems work is because there is no resistance to the water once it passes the point where it draws from the inlet. With your return system there is resistance all the way back to the tank.
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