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 Post subject: SmallFry's 1500L System
PostPosted: Jul 2nd, '11, 14:49 
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Woohoo - I got my system installed yesterday, and have just started it running - put tap water in yesterday. I've done my first lot of tests
pH : 8.5+ (maybe 9)
Ammonia : 0
Nitrite : 0
Nitrate : 0

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The system is really robust - tried to knock over the stand and it isn't going to happen, so the kids can run madly around it and I wont be concerned. Looks great! Love it.

There is a rumour that I'll also be getting a $100 voucher to go visit the Woodvale fish and lily farm.. that should get me well and truly started! I should be getting madly ready for the 40 odd people coming over to join me in my celebrations, but I'm too excited about my new system lol. Good thing DP wouldn't let me turn it on till most of the work was done!

Now off to have a few celebratory drinks :drunken:

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PostPosted: Jul 2nd, '11, 15:32 
Welcome Smallfry... nice looking little system... hope you get much enjoyment from it...


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PostPosted: Jul 3rd, '11, 06:36 
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looks good - have fun at th efish farm... :wave1:

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PostPosted: Jul 4th, '11, 15:42 
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Went for a bit of a look see this at Woodvale this morning - and I picked up a 600x1200 (300 deep) tank for under the grow bed - hoping to use this for duckweed and some yabbies.

They have some little silver perch's for $4 each, and I think yabbies for 10 for $30 for the small ones. Hoping these are OK prices. I'm only going to need about 10 fish to get this thing going as I only have 300L of growbed's at the moment (Sure that wont last long lol)

Kids couldn't wait to get things planted - so I put in some lettuce's, english spinach and a couple of small eggplant's that I had that were going to go in the front garden bed.

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Not that they are going to go to well at the moment - checked the water temp and it's about 9deg at the moment. So I'm not going to be cycled for a while.. patience....

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PostPosted: Jul 4th, '11, 16:26 
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Yeah, slowly, slowly... Might want to get some more plants into there soon as well, or perhaps some seeds..

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PostPosted: Jul 4th, '11, 17:50 
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OK - good to know. Was thinking that the plants wouldn't be much use until the bacteria actually get's going, those ones were just chucked in so the kids could see something happening. Will probably go with seedlings for now, although once it's more established I'll be using seed. Hmm, now time to plot what I would actually LIKE to grow.

Thanks!

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PostPosted: Jul 5th, '11, 12:16 
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Nice looking system and you cant only have 1 GB, it will be 2 then 4 and so on :P

Also if you have kids remember to get a cover for the fish tank to protect the fish (also to stop algae from growing) oh and the kids too haha

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PostPosted: Jul 5th, '11, 13:03 
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Really nice looking system. Zman's right :) u may as well start saving up for 2 or 3 more grow beds now :).

Most people like to plant day 1, just know they won't grow as well until things start really movin. You may want to add a little maxicrop (or seasol) with iron. Helps the plants while the system isn't cycled yet.

Look forward to see how it progresses, keep us updated on the pics :).

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PostPosted: Jul 5th, '11, 13:27 
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I'm already looking at possible expansion idea's... Heading down south for a holiday soon and I think a stop in at BYAP on the way back will be in order. Shame it's so far south of me.

FT Top - on my list to do as the new addition is already attracting the crow's attention :(

Temporary measure is a couple of beams I had left over from building the chicken coop. They are wide enough to go across the whole tank. So that and some bird netting and maybe some shade cloth to start with as I have those already. And I'll look at doing something more permanent later. Kids are old enough now that I'm not too stressed by them being near open water (7 and 9). I also let them put their hands in the other day so they KNOW how cold the water is. They aren't going near it :D

Still umming and arghing over whether I put couple of fish in (maybe 5 little SP), and then go on holiday, or let DP piss in it a few times before I go away. I can't see it having cycled in that time. And no one would be feeding the fish while I'm gone (but someone will be around to check that it's running while they feed the cat/quails/chickens)

First ever family holiday and he chooses AFTER I get the AP system installed.

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PostPosted: Jul 11th, '11, 17:45 
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Added 10 tiny little SP's (no more than 5cm long). On Tuesday, on Wednesday the water started to go cloudy. On Friday the kids chucked a hissy fit over the fact they couldn't SEE the fish (the SP's kept hiding around and under the pump). So back to the Woodvale Fish and Lily farm to purchase two decent sized goldfish. Water was starting to clear so I wasn't too concerned. Today the water is clear and I got to see the SP's darting around a bit more, and the goldfish are still going well.

Testing today, water temp 11 deg.
pH : 8.5+ (maybe 9)
Ammonia : darker than 0.4, but not quite at 0.8mg/l
Nitrite : over 0.1, but again not up to 0.25
Nitrate : 0

Added another dose of the beneficial bacteria to the FT and GB.

So things are starting to move. Feeding very very lightly at the moment. I can see the goldfish are eating, haven't seen the SP do so as yet. But I have a little bit of duckweed on the top so that while I'm away if they do get the munchies they can have some of that as they wont be getting fed. Leaving on Saturday and leaving instructions DO NOT TO FEED the fish.

I am wondering how much I should be feeding the yabbies in a separate tank - there are 5 in a 200L (1.2m x 0.6m x 0.3m) container under the growbed. I put a couple of pygmy perch in there to hopefully keep down the mosquito's. Hopefully they will be smarter than goldfish and manage to avoid the yabbies.... (not holding my breath on that one) Just have some duckweed on top, and some pvc pipe's for them to hide in. The water in there tests the same as the main FT at this stage.

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PostPosted: Jul 11th, '11, 20:13 
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Yabbies dont eat much fry. You could leave them for a month or more and it wont bother them although it is not ideal. Besides they will be knocking off your perch day by day. What are you feeding them at the moment?

I like these galvo systems, kinda cool. :thumbleft:

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PostPosted: Jul 11th, '11, 20:37 
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I picked up some sinking pellet's from the Woodvale Fish and Lily farm that are suitable for edible fish. The yabbies seem to be enjoying those (is there anything they don't eat?)

I put a couple of pieces of carrot in today for them - will fish out the leftovers tomorrow.

I like the look of the tanks as well - though I probably would have preferred a larger growbed (or two). I'll be looking at expanding once everything is cycled and has settled in. I'll definitely be calling in down at BYAP in the near future. Been writing out a wish list :D

At this stage I'm wishing dad had taught me some welding skills along with the woodworking. I nearly cry when I think of all the equipment we got rid of after he passed away. He was a mechanic, trained up in the army - but a bit of a jack of all trades, he used to have the workshop in Mingenew (for all those country people).

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PostPosted: Jul 11th, '11, 20:56 
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Raw carrot and potato is good but yea make sure you get rid of the left overs the next day. I havnt experimented with many types of pellets but your right they do eat all types of things as most bottom feeders do. But as I said dont fuss too much on there feeding, they will be fine while you are away.

As a tradesman I could see your pain in not being able to weld as I experienced that through my apprenticeship many moons ago but dont ever doubt yourself as there are so many options in perth for training if you find the time. Practice, practice my old man always said. Keep at it bud, youll be a champ in no time. :thumbleft:

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PostPosted: Jul 12th, '11, 08:53 
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Thanks - done a few TAFE courses over the years - the loss of the equipment is more heartbreaking, I think mum sold most of it for a fraction of it's original cost. I got the woodworking stuff as mum knew I would use that. But the mig welder and such all got sold off.

Poor dad never got over the fact he had 3 daughters. And all of us (and our partners) are in IT. Poor poor man....

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PostPosted: Jul 22nd, '11, 14:56 
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OK - back from the holiday in Dunsborough/Busselton (can you believe the 30min drive from BYAP took us over AN HOUR!!) Hi Faye :wave1: it was lovely to meet you!

Looking at the fish tank
:upset: - one of the silver perch's looks like's it's got white cotton growing on it's back. Assuming this is probably a fungus. Have chucked in the 3kg of salt that I brought down at BYAP - however that only makes it 2 parts (1500L system) so I probably need to go find another 1kg - is pool salt OK ??? Goldfish appear fine, and no dead bodies that I can see.

- Ammonia went down during the week, it was around 2 last Saturday, testing today it's 0.4. pH dropped to 8.0 (was 8.2) still basically a trace of nitrite and no movement on the nitrates. It is cold, so wasn't expecting anything much to happen.

- if I'm salting the system should I rescue the strawberries and chuck them in a garden bed for now ?

Thanks for any help

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