How to Mod the Sea Clone

Discussion in 'Protein Skimmers' started by RHorton, Dec 21, 2008.

  1. RHorton

    RHorton Fire Goby

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    I decided to make a thread on how to mod the seaclone for those of us who have one. I know this has been done before so I thought I would show my experiences with this skimmer.

    Mod 1: Modding the impeller

    There are different ways to do this, mesh, bioball cut in half, drill holes in the impellers and the fishing string. I chose to do the fishing string one because at the time I didn't have mesh or a bio ball.

    Start by cutting notches in each propeller on the top and bottom. I made about 3 notches on each side BE CAREFUL doing this because it is very easy to cut through the impeller.

    You basically just want to have little notches to hold the fishing line.

    Then take a small piece of fishing line and tie it around the base of the impeller and starting with the outer notch wrap the fishing line over and under each impeller and work your way to the center. Then cut the line and tie it to the base(which is not the easiest to do). All the mods do the same thing to break up the bubbles more.
    [​IMG]

    Mod 2: Cut the inner most tube down.
    this mod is a little harder to do because the inner tube is glued in. The purpose here is to allow the bubbles more contact time in the chamber.

    Take the skimmer cup off, remove the o-ring and take the outer tube out. Hopefully you can fit your hands down in to grab the inner tube and wiggle in back and forth till it comes out. You can use needle nose pliers.
    When I did mine it broke towards the bottom I had to superglue it back in.
    You can try hot water to try and loosen up the glue.

    Once you get it out, cut 2 inches off the tube.
    [​IMG]
    How much I cut off.
    [​IMG]

    Then replace the longer piece, using superglue if necessary to put it back in exactly the way it came out.

    Mod 3: Adding an air diffuser.

    This mod is to create more bubbles and by far has resulted in the biggest improvement to the seaclone.
    First you will need a wooden air diffuser, airpump, airline, package of air regulators and a wooden air diffuser.
    [​IMG]

    Start by cutting a hole in the top of the skimmer cap:
    [​IMG]
    Slide the airline through the top far enough to reach the bottom of the skimmer. Attach the air diffuser to the line and slide it down through the small inner tube (the one you cut in the previous mod.)
    [​IMG]
    Make sure the diffuser sits in the bottom chamber.
    [​IMG]
    Then hook the airline to a pump with a air regulator on it.

    The last mod I did was to cut a latex glove so it fit the bottom of the collection cup so it made a gasket between the collection cup and the second inner tube it sits on ( the o-ring is suppose to make a airtight seal but it doesn't).
    You will have to tune both regulators to get the skim you want.
    After I put the air diffuser in the cup was filled to the brim by morning what a difference.

    Well I hope this helps someone, any questions feel free to ask!
    Happy Reefing!
    Last edited: Dec 21, 2008
    5 people like this.
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  3. scenario1313

    scenario1313 Tassled File Fish

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    Nice step by step.
  4. coral reefer

    coral reefer Giant Squid

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    Nice job but in my opinion the best way of modifying the Sea Clone is by tossing it in the trash!
    I hate those things and think that their are so many other alternatives to this type of skimmer for a few dollars more!
  5. scenario1313

    scenario1313 Tassled File Fish

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    I agree but if you already have one why not make it better if you can. I made the mistake of getting one when I didn't know any better and I went the route of getting a better skimmer but some times you gotta do what you gotta do.
  6. ComputerJohn

    ComputerJohn Panda Puffer

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    I got one as well as my first skimmer and if not tuned correctly you get a mess of salt build up on the outside of it. I do like the mods, esspecially the airstone trick. I now have a use for my airpump, from my freshwater days of old. lol...
  7. coral reefer

    coral reefer Giant Squid

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    I guess alot depends on what is involved in modifying it and how much better it will be as oppossed to spending a few more dollaes for one that will double the outcome. It seems like you are picking up pennies and passing up quarters, in my opinion...but best of luck to you and hope it all works out.!
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2009
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  9. Dr.Fragenstein

    Dr.Fragenstein Panda Puffer

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    Nice take on a old mod! The pics will help where others failed! All else fails pay the extra $50 or so and get a small ASM or something!

    Happy modding!
  10. Big Fish Brian

    Big Fish Brian Astrea Snail

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    The Sea Clone was my first skimmer, and I REALLY hated the return '"waterfall" back into my tank, lots of salt creep and noise..

    Other than that, nice step by step!!
  11. PharmrJohn

    PharmrJohn Giant Squid

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    I love mods myself. Makes me think I can start tinkering around with my old 182......Nahhhhh.
  12. joelc

    joelc Plankton

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    RHorton, thanks for the mod suggestion!
    I have done them but have not been able to achieve the necessary results yet.

    Question; I am using an air stone, not a wooden air diffuser, how important is this?
    Also, what suggestions can you, or anyone, offer to set the air (bubbles) properly.

    Thanks a bunch!
  13. RHorton

    RHorton Fire Goby

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    Using an air stone won't work, it doesn't create small enough bubbles like the wooden diffuser will. I have tried many times before with a stone and never could get them to create foam (the bubbles are just to big).
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  15. Russter

    Russter Flamingo Tongue

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    Here is one week of collection from my SeaClone with the fishing line mod and using part of a rubber glove to help seal the collection cup to the main body. I noticed a huge difference in amount of bubbles after I modded the impeller. For smaller tanks, people on a budget, or people who didn't know better when they bought one (like me :-/), this mod makes a mediocre piece of equipment into a useful one.

    Attached Files:

  16. grubbsj

    grubbsj Gigas Clam

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    I made the "drilled holes" version of the above mods, with out adding the air diffuser, and have not been able to get skimate that dark... I still use this skimmer for the few times I need/want a skimmer on the medic/quarantine tank... Time to add the diffuser...

    Thank you for the update to Modifying the SeaClone.
  17. prat4821

    prat4821 Astrea Snail

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    This is the best set of pictures I've been able to find for the bio-wheel mod; pretty simple stuff.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Seems like a useful trick for making a moderately viable supplemental skimmer.
  18. GarB3ar

    GarB3ar Astrea Snail

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    Just modded mine, did the impeller, tom i am going to stop by the LFS and pick up an air diffuser. Hopefully once i get my sump setup I can get another Skimmer.
  19. s10lowrider1994

    s10lowrider1994 Feather Duster

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    We picked one up along with a bunch of other random marine goodies for $25 recently. Some local guy bought a big marine setup and decided to use it a freshwater so he put everything saltwater related that came with it on craigslist for $25. It sucked stock so we modded the tubes, added a new flow control, sealed the cup to the main body and ran a rigid airline straight to the bottom with a wooden airstone. Considering what it cost total it is working out pretty good so far.
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  21. kimberlee

    kimberlee Flamingo Tongue

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    I have to agree, I'm the on the budget type, and ended up w/ this skimmer. Didn't work all that great, them we ran across theses same instructions to mod it. I must of been lucky w/ the mods, because mine works better than I could of hoped for, and I've had no good reason to get another skimmer. For those who are on the fence about bothering w/ the mods, they can work, and are worth trying.

    Great step by step guide, it's very easy to follow.
  22. michaellis93

    michaellis93 Plankton

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    is the air diffuser supposed to spin around and tap and stuff?
  23. RHorton

    RHorton Fire Goby

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    nope the air diffuser just sits in the bottom of the tube and creates air bubbles.
  24. RHorton

    RHorton Fire Goby

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    very nice!