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Becketts Foaming Venturi Nozzle for Oxygenating Water in Fish Ponds

This page shows you a Becketts nozzle which I have attached to the top of my in-pond venturi and pump as an experiment after a friend sent it for me to try out. The pump (a Hozelock Cascade 4000) is being used to power both the Beckett foaming fountain nozzle and my underwater venturi.

Read on for more information....

Jims Pond Blog

To get the latest news on my ponding bio-filter and venturi experiments why not visit Jim's Pond Blog. You can subscribe to my blog's RSS Feed powered by Feedburner to ensure you get the latest updates. It will work with most Atom and RSS 2.0 compatible news reader software, such as Bloglines, Desktop Sidebar, NewsGator, MyYahoo, etc.

FISHY FORUMS

For great fish-keeping communities visit my favourite forums at:-

They are very friendly and knowledgeable groups of people who will make you feel very welcome. There is tons of discussion going on about fish of all kinds, problems whether relating to the health of your fish or the state of your pond, and advice on filters, pumps and anything else you can think of!

I highly recommend Bradshaws Direct (UK) for all your ponding supplies:-

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This is a picture of the foamer nozzle before attaching to the pump. You can see the airholes in the sides which are used to draw in air by the venturi effect due to the speed of the water flowing through the unit, which in turn bubbles air into the water, and so providing oxygenation.

First thing I think is that Beckett made the nozzle inlet an odd sort of size (no doubt it is designed to fit their own pumps). Why couldn't they have made it more a standard pipe size? Anyway as you'll see from the photos after some fiddling I was able to fit it to the fountain head upright tube on my Hozelock Cascade fountain which I use for my in-pond venturi.

Here is the Becketts nozzle attached to the top of my Hozelock Cascade 4000 litres per hour 24 volt pump. The white piping is my home made "tooth" design venturi. The valves on the sides of the fountain pipe can be used to adjust the flow between the foaming fountain nozzle and the venturi.

My friend Dex found a guy in the states who sells these foamer jets on Ebay.

Although many pond owners like these kind of foaming nozzles for use in their ponds, marine aquarium enthusiasts also use them for homemade designs of "skimmers".

A side-note on Skimmers

A skimmer (the technical term is "foam fractionator") is generally intended for use in marine (saltwater) aquariums, and commonly uses some kind of foaming nozzle or other device to bubble air through the water. Its primary use is not as an aerator, but as a means of cleaning the water.

Due to the proteins and particles present in the salt water the bubbles break the surface tension of the water and create a fine foam, more so than it would in fresh water. The fine bubbles float to the surface taking up any other fine particles, sediment, fish poo etc, and form a foam on the surface of the water in the skimmer, which traps all the waste particles, and then the dirty foam overflows via a "skimming" outlet (hence the name skimmer) into a drain cup or recepticle which can be emptied at regular intervals.

Here is an example of a skimmer used in a marine aquarium.....

Underworld SeaClone Protein Skimmer

SeaClone 100 Protein Skimmer

The SeaClone is powered by a MaxiJet MP1200 Powerhead (included) and can be used either as an external 'hang-on' or an 'in-sump' model. It now comes with new snap fittings for greater performance, reliability and easier cleaning. Designed for aquariums up to 455 litres (100 gal). The Overflow Extension is an optional extra for aquariums with a greater than 25mm (1'') brace.

Source: The Aquarium Shop (UK)

The general conscensus of opinion however, is that while the Becketts nozzle is ideal for general aeration of pond water, the bubbles it produces are not very small unless operating under high pressure, and apparently for skimmers in marine aquariums, the finer the bubbles, the better will be the foaming ability to float and trap the waste particles. If you are interested in the Beckett being used in skimmers, see the Pictures link in the Resources section below.

The Beckett Corporation is based in the USA, and their web site at the time of writing can be found at www.888beckett.com however they do not appear to sell this particular nozzle separately any longer (only included with some of their fountain kits). See Resources section further below.

Anyway, here are a couple of shots of the unit once taken apart to reveal the magic innards that make the venturi effect, which sucks the air in via the 5mm airholes and mixes it into the water. Bear in mind that the design of this unit is to be used as an above water vertically mounted fountain head. This means it will not work as an underwater venturi.

Another view of the foamer venturi unit with the inner ball nozzle removed, clearly showing the design.

In conjunction with my own venturi it works great, and using the valves I am able to adjust the water to either or both of the venturi and the foamer nozzle, so I get the benefit of both a strong current (which the fish like to swim against, which in itself gives them exercise and keeps them healthy) and plenty of aeration in the pond, plus the extra aeration from the Becketts nozzle giving the fountain.

1. Here is the pump feeding just my venturi....

2. And here it is feeding both venturi and Beckett fountain.

3. Here it is with a bit more volume of water fed to the foamer nozzle, but still some aeration from the below-water venturi.

4. And finally, we have the Beckett foamer fountain nozzle in full flow (no flow going to the underwater venturi). Whoah! This is actually rather too much! It ends up splashing water over the sides of my small pond. But this would probably be ideal in a larger pond.

Resources / Where to Buy

Here are some further links to pages I found during my own research on the Beckett foaming fountain nozzle. Many pages discussing the device listed by Google had dead links, but at the time of writing, the links I selected below were all ok. If you find that any become dead please let me know.

Although there are lots of fountain pumps available by several different manufacturers, there are not that many that include a foamer nozzle. These are details of the few I located.

Pictures

http://www.rl180reef.com/pages/filtration/beckett.htm - although a bit old (2001) Richard Durso's page provides some more pictures of Beckett nozzles, however which of these are still available from Beckett I am not sure. The page also details how Richard tried the Beckett nozzle in an experiment to provide improved performance within marine aquarium skimmer units. Further down the page is some more interesting information on how bubble-size greatly affects the performance of the skimmer, and most important an updated summary and conclusion on whether it was worth it. Richard Durso's new web site provides a page showing more pictures of his dual-Beckett nozzle skimmer (or click here for the Home page of his RL180Reef web site). The web site is well worth a look just for the colourful pictures of anemones, clownfish, clams and corals and DivX movies of his beautiful marine fish. See the Picture Gallery. I know its a bit off-topic for my pond site, but my wife and I are keen scuba divers and love the amazing colour and variety of marine life.

Little Giant

An equivalent bubbling fountain head can be found here (MarketExpo sell the Little Giant line of fountain nozzles, and are based in Texas, USA):-

http://www.marketexpo.com/prod_2344_m3_1s14_2s58_3s104.htm

This is what someone had to say about the Little Giant bubbler (although in the context of use in a skimmer - it is probably perfectly adequate for general aeration use in a pond):-

"I too tried the Little Giant bubbler (from Lowes) when I couldn't find the Beckett - it was satisfactory only in the upright position, and then only marginally so. I had modified it a bit to get more airflow, so I wasn't returning it, but when I get my pond finished, it will probably find a home there - BTW - it needed a LOT of water to get fine bubbles - a 3/4" line and close to 30 PSI and flow upwards of 8-12 GPM. yup, good for a pond."

Oase

Oase make a foamer nozzle as well, although they appear to be quite pricey! The following link is the catalogue page for the UK based SeaPets online shop:-

http://www.seapets.co.uk/search-results.html?searchvalue=foam+nozzle&results=0&category=8

http://www.oasefountain.com/nozzles/nozd.htm

 
 
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