That sounds like a decent prefilter.
The filter featured in the REI link is not quite as user friendly as it might appear and be aware the pads required to keep this filter working are not cheap either.
Perhaps a better idea would be to have a hollow filter body with a S.S. screen for each end. In the open space between you could install various types of pre-filter media. The options could be Aquarium Fluff for the sediment or even Charcoal to reduce a nasty chemical taste. The main idea is to make the pre-filter user friendly as well as the main filter.