Backyard Aquaponics

Westfield Primary Aquaponics Setup
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Author:  Burnsy [ Aug 10th, '11, 10:17 ]
Post subject:  Re: Westfield Primary Aquaponics Setup

mattyry wrote:
thats a lot of leaf eaters??

True but the gardens are pretty extensive so probably no different to most that don't use any type of bait.

Author:  Burnsy [ Sep 12th, '12, 10:19 ]
Post subject:  Re: Westfield Primary Aquaponics Setup

Wow, it has been a year since I posted here, how time flies! The system has been ticking along with little if any love until yesterday when I found the tank had run right down in water overnight. Some head scratching and fault finding found the original ebara sump pump had failed. This would normally cause no issue as the second grundfos sump pump is up to the the job on it's own. However, one of the bains of my life - the plastic wrappers off juice box straws, had not only limited flow on the grundfos but had also jammed up both non-return valves meaning the sump pump could not keep up with the inflow from the tank. Subsequently the sump was overflowing every cycle.

Stripped and cleaned out the non-return valves and pumps. Removed the rocks and sludge out of the bottom of the sump and a new replacement grundfos will be installed today for the ebara.

Author:  arbe [ Sep 12th, '12, 12:16 ]
Post subject:  Re: Westfield Primary Aquaponics Setup

Just goes to show when you dont keep tinkering with your system that it will just keep humming along - unless those pesky plastic wrappers get in the way.

Any new pics Burnsy?

Author:  Burnsy [ Sep 12th, '12, 13:34 ]
Post subject:  Re: Westfield Primary Aquaponics Setup

arbe wrote:
Any new pics Burnsy?

Not really, looks the same as it did last year in the photo's Faye posted, just not as well planted out.

Author:  Burnsy [ Mar 13th, '14, 20:06 ]
Post subject:  Re: Westfield Primary Aquaponics Setup

Big day today, found the tank was suddenly dirty overnight. We are currently running koi (as it negates animal ethics - no killing fish for consumption) and some of them are monsters and tend to mess up the tank quickly. Great for the kids as they are better to look at than SP or trout on a day to day basis.

Cause was the Laguna Powerjet 16000 had died. A look back through the thread indicates this was commissioned in Dec 2010 so it lasted 3 years and 3 months - 3 year warranty - go figure :dontknow:

Also found one of the Grundfos unilifts had died sometime in the last two weeks (last cleaned and inspected) only showed up as it was acting as an element and the lack of flowing water from the Laguna meant a sump 1/4 full of tempid water. $1000 later, two new pumps fitted. Another Grundfos and a PondMAx 16000. Be interesting to see if the Pondmax lives as long as the Italian Laguna.

Author:  Sleepe [ Mar 14th, '14, 07:01 ]
Post subject:  Re: Westfield Primary Aquaponics Setup


I would install large prefilters/ screens on the pump intakes, I have two on my pump about the size of soccer balls filled with bioballs.

A cheap way of doing it is to get those black plastic mesh vege market trays stick the pump outlet through the lid with a threaded flange then zip tie about four complete trays together together; filled with bioballs is good.

Author:  earthbound [ Mar 14th, '14, 16:35 ]
Post subject:  Re: Westfield Primary Aquaponics Setup

Interesting feedback Mike...

Hope the pondmax does you well, I love them... Why? Because they last and people don't bring them back broken.. :)

Though saying that, we had one 4500 come back yesterday, opened it up to find the impeller fins broken off. The guy was shocked we didn't have any spare impellers but I reckon that's the first one we've ever had come back broken like that..

Author:  Burnsy [ Mar 15th, '14, 19:58 ]
Post subject:  Re: Westfield Primary Aquaponics Setup

Joel, I pulled the Laguna down and it was a failure due to circumstance not the pump itself. Impellers though not broken were jammed full of lumps of stick. Once released it was very loose and beyond use for the system.

Sleepe, I think I will create a basket using shade cloth, no bioballs though. Will do the same for the two sump pumps as I need to keep the leaves, hydroton, straws and plastic wrappers out of the non return valves. At the moment they need cleaning out fortnightly to keep them from jamming open.

Author:  Burnsy [ May 14th, '14, 21:09 ]
Post subject:  Re: Westfield Primary Aquaponics Setup

Bit of an update and probaly the last post I will make to this thread with any current updates or details.......... I have moved on from Westfield Park Primary and leave as a legacy two operating systems. Hopefully they will be maintained and provide educational benefit for many years to come :wave: .

Personally I have not left the education or AP fold and am now teaching Cert I in Agrifoods at Hillside Farm. We have a two bed BYAP system there and are currently in the process of putting together a donated IBC system I grabbed off a forum member late last year.

For any people local to Westfield Park Primary interested in AP and wanting to get involved with the school system, please give them a call. A local volunteer gardening group has become involved with the dirt gardens and AP there with a view to creating a local community garden so I expect any experienced or enthusiastic novice APers would be welcomed.

Author:  Harley1997 [ Jul 19th, '14, 18:32 ]
Post subject:  Re: Westfield Primary Aquaponics Setup

HI Burnsy,,,

Not sure if you remember me I'm Harley one of the students that used to attend westfield park i help set up the aquaponics and the backup air pump.. just commenting to see how the system is going and what not I'm starting my own system soon so should be pretty cool let me know how its going would love to know cheers mate

Author:  Burnsy [ Sep 22nd, '14, 18:25 ]
Post subject:  Re: Westfield Primary Aquaponics Setup

Hi Harley, definitely remember you :wave: I am not at Westfield any more and have moved to Hillside farm. There was a community garden group there starting out when I left that was going to look after the system. You should drop by and check out how it is going and give us all an update.

Author:  Harley1997 [ Oct 8th, '14, 17:09 ]
Post subject:  Re: Westfield Primary Aquaponics Setup

Do you have another way i can contact you besides this forum :)

Author:  Group 1 [ Jul 26th, '17, 11:58 ]
Post subject:  Re: Westfield Primary Aquaponics Setup

No problem if the sump runs right down, we don't need to have any fish or crustaceons in it - my figuring was that it should otherwise the ebara would be running continuously.

What would be the problem with making up the additional volume required in the FT by locating the venturi at the level I suggested and having the tank filled to above the overflow point as I have suggested?

Mike :mrgreen:

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