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View Full Version : Removing the impeller assembly for cleaning - RD3


jedimaster1138
05/02/2017, 09:57 AM
What's the secret to disassembling the RD3 Speedy - the DC pump - for cleaning?

I can't get the impeller assembly out of the motor anymore (I used to be able to, with great, great effort) If I just yank on the needle wheel head, that much will come off the shaft, but the entire black plastic head + shaft etc doesn't come out. It moves a little, say 5mm but removing it completely, not so much.

I'm hesitant to use a flat blade screwdriver etc to pry the black plastic under where the o-ring retainer tabs are. Not that I could get a blade in that opening anyway....

Any tips, or am I just being a wimp and have to Hulk-up? Though I don't know where the Hulk is going to grab...

Thanks!

slief
05/02/2017, 01:47 PM
Just grasp the needle wheel and wobble it back and forth while pulling it. "It's all in the wrist".. No need to pull to hard but the trick is moving it side to side a bit while pulling. The tolerances are really tight where the shaft goes into the base of the block and where the cavity cover meets the block just below the needle wheel. Also, the magnet is incredibly strong too. Thus you need to finesse it off with a bit of wiggle and pull. I've got it down to a science with my RD3 skimmer pump but I clean mine every 4-5 months. Worse case, if it's been a while since you cleaned yours, put some vinegar in a bucket of water 50/50 and run the pump in it for about 10 minutes. That probably won't be needed though. The wiggle trick should free it.

jedimaster1138
05/02/2017, 05:08 PM
Splendid. Thanks. I will try this. I usually clean it 3x a year or so, but we had a baby a year ago and thus my maintenance schedule has uh, lapsed. heh It's probably been 6 or 8 months, give or take. (Man I wish there was a skimmer and self cleaning head for babies... can you can ask Klaus and the engineers in Germany to work on that? Diapers are awful...)

I use an RD as a return pump as well, and that's next up on the maintenance schedule. I have a gallon jug of used vinegar ready to go.

slief
05/02/2017, 05:37 PM
Splendid. Thanks. I will try this. I usually clean it 3x a year or so, but we had a baby a year ago and thus my maintenance schedule has uh, lapsed. heh It's probably been 6 or 8 months, give or take. (Man I wish there was a skimmer and self cleaning head for babies... can you can ask Klaus and the engineers in Germany to work on that? Diapers are awful...)

I use an RD as a return pump as well, and that's next up on the maintenance schedule. I have a gallon jug of used vinegar ready to go.

Glad to help. The lack of maintenance has probably contributed to the impellers stubbornness. Vinegar is our best friend when it comes to pumps. Not so much babies though. Just be sure not to soak the pumps too long in the vinegar. Vinegar is used in the marine industry to clean up expoxy and prolonged exposure in vinegar can actually damage the pumps since expoxy is used in the manufacturing process. Also avoid soaking the o-rings.

Congrats on the baby! We will get to work on the Royal Exclusiv self cleaning baby device! :lolspin:

jedimaster1138
05/02/2017, 08:16 PM
I'm just curious how you would define too long a soak in vinegar?

There have been times in the past where I've let things soak for a solid 24 hours, but they were messes of hardened coraline etc. I've never soaked a RE part that long - more like a couple hours max because I'm paranoid about damage to the most valuable parts in my reef. But I'd love to hear your perspective on appropriate soak duration.

I generally use something like 1/3rd vinegar - 2/3rds tap water, but that's not really chiseled in stone. Stronger for shorter time or weaker for longer?

slief
05/03/2017, 08:21 AM
I honestly avoid soaking my pumps any more than 30 minutes. Usually after 10 minutes to 15 minutes, I will hold them for the vinegar scrub them and rinse them. I didn't repeat the process if necessary. But I also use straight vinegar. The only time I've ever needed to resort to any real long soaks would be my Tunzes which I severely abuse. Most pumps have epoxy where the wires go into the body and as I mentioned above, vinegar can soften the epoxy so prolonged soaks really should be avoided. Some people use Muradic acid which is even worse.