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View Full Version : Cad Lights Conic Protein Skimmer (TIA-1150)


Dearth
08-08-2013, 02:19 AM
Just thought I'd post my thoughts on this skimmer I've had it for 2 months now and let it run in a tank for a few weeks before using it in the sump. For people on a budget or requiring a smaller footprint the Cad lights skimmer line definitely fills the bill and comes with the built in pump and comes ready to use


Positives
-It is very quiet has 4 rubber foot pegs on the bottom for noise dampening and anti vibration my return pump is noisier than the skimmer
-foot print is small 9.75 inches by 6.5 inches by 18.5 high
-no micro bubbles produced
-very easy adjustment for producing bubbles and simple design makes it user friendly
-collection cup can be connected to an external drain and only requires half and inch of space to remove the cup for cleaning
-easy to clean skimmer without pulling apart can put in a vinegar bath and let it self clean for a few hrs

Negatives
-rubber foot pegs are a pain easy for them to fall off
-electrical cord relatively short
-pipe used for bubble and flow adjustment tends to bind making micro-adjustments annoying


This is still a relative new comer to the aquarium hobbyist but is already making quite a splash due to its low cost and ease of use and is pretty durable.

ScubaSteve
08-08-2013, 06:10 AM
I've been eying up this skimmer as well. What's the performance like? Have you had other skimmers you could compare it too? What size tank are you running and what's your bioload?

hunggi74
08-08-2013, 06:16 AM
I have the same skimmer and am quite happy with it. It is super quiet! Have had it running for almost 4 months and haven't had any issues yet. Will have to wait and see in regards to longevity. The price is definitely right for the performance you get. Even in my small tank with only a clownfish and dotty back, it's able to pull in a fair amount of skimate. Hope this helps (or adds to the headache) for anyone looking for an affordable skimmer.

Dearth
08-08-2013, 06:21 AM
I've been eying up this skimmer as well. What's the performance like? Have you had other skimmers you could compare it too? What size tank are you running and what's your bioload?

I am cycling my 95 gallon tank with it and not much load as of yet but it has been skimming pretty good so far making some pretty good sized bubbles with it. Unfortunately this is my first experience with in sump skimmers so still on a learning curve but I am extremely impressed with how quiet it is and easy it is to adjust the flow and bubbles.

Dearth
08-08-2013, 06:47 AM
took some picts of the skimmer in action

The collection cup with drain hose connection
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v447/Dearth01/DSCF0212_zpse4a34894.jpg (http://smg.photobucket.com/user/Dearth01/media/DSCF0212_zpse4a34894.jpg.html)

On the left hand side is The flow and bubbler adjustment pipe it pulls right out and has 45 degree cut for flow opening twist left or right to increase or decrease flow and bubbles. Tube on the right is connected to the venturi some people have bored out the venturi to get better bubble flow
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v447/Dearth01/DSCF0210_zps96ce9609.jpg (http://smg.photobucket.com/user/Dearth01/media/DSCF0210_zps96ce9609.jpg.html)

Side view with the inlet to pump with venturi the motor sits directly underneath the skimmer and adjustment pipe is connected to the discharge side
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v447/Dearth01/DSCF0209_zps6d5ee3da.jpg (http://smg.photobucket.com/user/Dearth01/media/DSCF0209_zps6d5ee3da.jpg.html)

Dearth
08-29-2013, 09:19 PM
It's been just over 2 months since the skimmer started skimming and I couldn't be happier with it I'm running on the heavy side of a medium bio load and the skimmer is pulling tons of solids out of the system I am emptying the cup every 3 or 4 days and has heavy buildup of material in the cup. I would recommend this skimmer to anyone it's a joy to work with

oupulino
09-02-2013, 04:07 PM
It's been just over 2 months since the skimmer started skimming and I couldn't be happier with it I'm running on the heavy side of a medium bio load and the skimmer is pulling tons of solids out of the system I am emptying the cup every 3 or 4 days and has heavy buildup of material in the cup. I would recommend this skimmer to anyone it's a joy to work with
can you post some pictures of skimmate in collection cup.How thick is acrylic cone and quality build is thicker than Bubble Magus Curve 5 Protein Skimmer

Dearth
09-04-2013, 02:27 AM
can you post some pictures of skimmate in collection cup.How thick is acrylic cone and quality build is thicker than Bubble Magus Curve 5 Protein Skimmer


Sorry didn't reply sooner was too damn tired last night. I don't know the comparison with the Bubble Magus Curve 5 Protein Skimmer but the acrylic is thick for both the cone and skimmer collection cup several MM thick and has proven to be durable as well the cup is 4.5 inches deep and 5.5 inches wide and already has been dropped a couple of times. I see no real issues as of yet with the skimmer it is doing the job as advertised and it is dead quiet.

Included 2 pictures of the collection cup

This is with 3 days of skimming on the high end of a medium load
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v447/Dearth01/003_zpsae4b6ea0.jpg (http://smg.photobucket.com/user/Dearth01/media/003_zpsae4b6ea0.jpg.html)

Inside the cup just before cleaning
http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v447/Dearth01/004_zps1365e4b0.jpg (http://smg.photobucket.com/user/Dearth01/media/004_zps1365e4b0.jpg.html)


Hope this answers some of your questions

oupulino
09-04-2013, 05:37 AM
looks good I think to get this one how to find out who make the pomps for them ?

Dearth
12-15-2013, 07:01 AM
It's been 6 months now since I started using the cadlights full time and I have nothing but praise for it the skimmer still runs silently have not had any issues with micro bubbles or the motor and the skimmer cup works awesomely. I just cleaned the skimmer in a vinegar bath and it cleaned up surprisingly well I am very impressed with the ease that it pulls apart for cleaning and very simple to put back together with no fighting to fit parts.

I have not had to deal with customer service so on that end I can offer no comment but then again I have had no issues with the skimmer either but for the price it packs a pretty good wallop and even though it's the new kid on the block I would have no problems recommending this to others.

gmann
03-18-2014, 07:51 AM
what water level do you have your skimmer in? I have min in 10" and it is overflowing like crazy...

gmann
03-18-2014, 07:54 AM
what water level are you having yours sit in? I have mine in 10" and its overflowing like crazy no matter what direction i turn the pipe

Dearth
03-18-2014, 03:21 PM
what water level are you having yours sit in? I have mine in 10" and its overflowing like crazy no matter what direction i turn the pipe

Try lifting it a bit as optimal operating for the Cadlights is 7-9 inches mine is set at 8 inches with no issues

oupulino
03-18-2014, 05:18 PM
put at 7 " that is the best setting anyway the pumps in this skimmers are junk if you can returned do it and buy other skimmer .I like aquamax great skimmers and quality build pump not much a deferents in the price

gmann
03-18-2014, 06:40 PM
thanks i will try 8"

Dearth
08-01-2014, 12:47 AM
So its been a year since I bought the Cadlights skimmer and after a year I am still thoroughly impressed with the skimmer I've done 2 complete cleanings of the skimmer.

Likes

-Very easy to pull apart and clean very few moving parts
-Still very quiet with no vibrations
-still skims like it was new
-very easy still to adjust bubble flow
-power costs are low
-very easy to pipe if you need to


Dislikes

-Had to do a minor modification to the venturi to improve bubble flow(supposedly has been fixed in newer models)
-Anti-vibration rubber foot pegs are a waste of time they keep falling off
-collection cup drain tube plugs up easily(if you choose to use it I used it for 3 months didn't really like the drain tube)
-electrical cord is 2 feet too short


Overall it still performs well does as advertised and unlike some other name brand skimmer models I've seen in action this runs very quiet my lights cooling fans are noisier than my return pump and skimmer combined

I have no qualms recommending this to anybody

intarsiabox
08-01-2014, 12:59 AM
So its been a year since I bought the Cadlights skimmer and after a year I am still thoroughly impressed with the skimmer I've done 2 complete cleanings of the skimmer.

Likes

-Very easy to pull apart and clean very few moving parts
-Still very quiet with no vibrations
-still skims like it was new
-very easy still to adjust bubble flow
-power costs are low
-very easy to pipe if you need to


Dislikes

-Had to do a minor modification to the venturi to improve bubble flow(supposedly has been fixed in newer models)
-Anti-vibration rubber foot pegs are a waste of time they keep falling off
-collection cup drain tube plugs up easily(if you choose to use it I used it for 3 months didn't really like the drain tube)
-electrical cord is 2 feet too short


Overall it still performs well does as advertised and unlike some other name brand skimmer models I've seen in action this runs very quiet my lights cooling fans are noisier than my return pump and skimmer combined

I have no qualms recommending this to anybody

Thanks for the long term review. I just happen to be looking for a new skimmer for a 75g FOWLR and will look into this one as a candidate.

Dearth
04-16-2015, 03:05 AM
Just a quick update

Pump has been running almost non stop for approx 19 months now aside for 6 hrs for cleaning at 6 and 12 months and today no vibration or noises evident still runs silent no heat buildup detectable nor any electrical issues aside from the ridiculously short power cord (my biggest complaint)

Still skims well however adjustment pipe for flow sticks and can be a pain to micro adjust (been using pliers to adjust flow)

The impeller is still in great shape next to no buildup in the pump

Only issue is scum and slime buildup around the Venturi which was inhibiting bubble flow

Overall still extremely impressed with the Cadlights skimmer and still would have no issues recommending this to people

Dearth
11-17-2016, 05:24 AM
Another update:

Its been almost 3 and a half years since I started using this skimmer

Pump is still in great shape no noise or damage visible and bubbler is still working well

other than the previously stated issues I have not noticed any major problems

I just cleaned it tonight after it has run continuously for the past year with next to no maintenance due to medical issues and have only had to do minor adjustments on the bubbler to optimize its operation

Still a good product IMO for those on a budget

Dearth
09-24-2017, 07:35 PM
Final update on this skimmer

When Cadlights first came out it was a relatively unknown skimmer when I bought mine. I don’t believe the model I have is sold anymore however some of the issues I previously mentioned have been fixed in later models

The pump and pin wheel still function awesomely I have never had to clean the pin wheel or pump as both work as if brand new still just pull apart for inspection purposes only

The body of the skimmer is still in great condition and no issues very sound and well built and is still as quiet as the day I bought it no noise at all

It is still one of the easiest skimmers I have found to adjust for flow just use the pipe to adjust flow and instant results no waiting to see if that adjustment was wrong or right

Biggest issue I have found is the pipe will bind after sometime of not moving and I have to use a pair of channel lock pliers to loosen the pipe

One of the things Cadlights fixed in later models is the size of the hole that the bubbler tube attached to as in earlier models like mine you had to drill out the hole to make it marginally bigger as the hole was too small and tended to plug off

One thing I would like to see is a screen over the opening of the bubbler to stop snails, larger detritus and algae from clogging up the body of the bubbler the DIY ones I build are crap

Other than that I am quite pleased with the skimmer it is very easy to use and adjust and very few parts so it’s not complicated to put together and is relatively cheap compared to some of its competitors