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PostPosted: May 9th, '11, 04:12 
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Thanks, arbe, zsazsa, and mcfarm.

I set up my 1 IBC system at the GH to get some gravel cycled up (sorry for the poor light on the 2nd pic):
Image Image
and I'll add some active gravel from my inside AP systems on my next trip, along with some tank heaters. I'll add my remaining 5 tilapia in about a week.

The gravel in there is full of fish poo from last fall, so there's ammonia to start up the bacteria already. Surprisingly, the gravel hadn't turned anaerobic. It was frozen all winter, of course, but it smelled fine when I moved it.

I now have access to the clean, non-fertilized water. So after the the system was pumping for an hour or so I took some initial readings:
Ammonia: 0.25
NitrItes: 0
NitrAtes: 0
pH: somewhere between 7.4 and 7.6 (much better than the off-the-scale high pH the fertilized water was!)
KH and GH just off the scale.

Hopefully, once I get access to the entire GH in June, I'll have enough bacteria to really kickstart the big systems.

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PostPosted: May 14th, '11, 16:17 
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Have you priced how much it would cost to make your troughs by dry stacking cinder blocks like Travis Hughey used on his pond? See this link: http://www.fastonline.org/component/option,com_gallery2/Itemid,41/?g2_itemId=243&g2_imageViewsIndex=1. Constructing and moving it later would suck, due to the weight of the blocks, but it should give you the strength and depth you desire. You would lose some space due to the thickness of the blocks, but you could make up for that by making one 8 foot wide trough instead of two 4 footers. It would make plants in the middle hard to access, so I guess it depends on what you plan on growing. I suppose single harvest crops like lettuce would work well, but if you plan on floating any multi harvest crops, probably not feasible.

Just a thought, and I look forward to seeing which option you end up using.

Also, before posting this I just read back and saw your liner is 12'x100'. To get the two foot height in the troughs you want, using 8 foot wide troughs built with cinder blocks, you would need to order wider liners. I'm guessing that's not an option. Even so, I personally like the strength, cost, and wear resistance for the blocks, so I would probably use the liners you have and settle for a 14"-15" depth.


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PostPosted: May 17th, '11, 04:47 
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Moved my surviving 6 tilapia (+ one very long-lived goldfish) from my basement to the GH today:

Image

(Sorry no polarized lense on this one. Goldie in the lower left.)
Image

They're in the IBC now:
Image

I did the transition pretty quickly (about 30 min), given the differences in the water (city water to well water), so I hope they're OK tomorrow when I go check!

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PostPosted: May 26th, '11, 21:53 
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I'm hungry for news! Give us stg to chew on!

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PostPosted: May 31st, '11, 17:06 
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swanberg
news pls did the fishies survive ?? have u gotten a greenhouse full of wood and bits yet ? sorry been reading ur thred and want to follow verry verry closely. i envy your braveness and wish you all the luck in the world and great sucsess.

thanks

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PostPosted: Jun 1st, '11, 06:02 
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How did you pick a SCORE mentor or mentors? Did you use online mentors or one on one?

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PostPosted: Jun 2nd, '11, 08:22 
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Hi Zac and Zsazsa, I'll be updating as I get more pics and info!

Bob;
I called them, and gave them the 30 second overview of what I was up to, and then they chose the mentor team for me. I've only been to SCORE once, though.

Update!
Zac, the fish made the transition just fine! Seven less-than-plate-sized fish in a 270gal (1000l) IBC. Oh yeah, they're happy... :shark:

Some throw-away seedlings in the temporary IBC AP setup to suck up nitrates:
Image

Current readings:
H20 temp: 78ºF (25.5º C)
Am: 0.25
Ni: 0
Na: 40-80
pH: 8.0

Seeds! Bought small packs of a wide variety of stuff to see what would work best in this particular environment.
Image

Foam! The rafts have arrived. I couldn't find the Dow blueboard in an un-scored format, so I ended up with a local yellow foam. Same stuff, as far as I can tell. 2" (50.8mm) extruded polystyrene. Portapotty for scale. :-P
Image

Building Stuff:
Image

I now have my pumps, aerators, tanks, stock tank growbeds, liners for trough growbeds, foam for rafts, and a fair number of bits and pieces, but I haven't yet started hard-core construction because the GH is still occupied by the spring renters. They should be out in the next few days, and I can start building like a crazy woman. I have some work days coming up, so if anyone feels like flying in from Perth...

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PostPosted: Jun 2nd, '11, 10:26 
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Alright..... :headbang: Thats quite a stack of foam, are you going to cut them down a little? What size are you thinking of going for?

Time is a bit booked up around here at the moment.... :)

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PostPosted: Jun 2nd, '11, 14:12 
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The 2" foam comes in sheets that are 4' x 8' (122cm x 244cm). I'll start by cutting most of them into thirds, so the rafts will be 4' x 2'8" (122cm x 81cm).

That's what the Friendly's use, and they find it a great size, big enough to be efficient, small enough to be easy to handle. I did some handling of them when I was there for training, and was happy with the size.

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PostPosted: Jun 2nd, '11, 14:31 
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Be sure to paint them well. If it's anything like the ones we had, wherever there was a poor paint covering you could see them disintegrating because of the UV..

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PostPosted: Jun 2nd, '11, 19:46 
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tahnks for the update mate. wish i could fly over and help out. im so jelluss that you are following yoru dream. again i wish you all the luck in the world. once your done and established id recomend u do greenhosue tours and maybe set up a caf for ppls to come visit. but that would be a long way off and the facility may not be up for that. jsut a idea mate.



gl and best wishis


zac


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PostPosted: Jun 3rd, '11, 12:34 
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Video is about 4:30. Sorry for the poor audio.



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PostPosted: Jun 3rd, '11, 13:30 
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That's it. I am now green with envy.

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PostPosted: Jun 3rd, '11, 14:31 
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Great looking setup. Thanks for the video tour :thumbright: .


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PostPosted: Jun 4th, '11, 07:43 
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WOW very nice!

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