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 Post subject: My test system
PostPosted: Jun 10th, '18, 07:48 
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So, I kind of ended up in the aquaponics world by accident, a friend toldme he wanted to develop an idea he had related to aquaponics, but he desn't have the manual skills or time to do it, and asked me to do it for him.
We set the expectations for our project and I rapidly started to work on it but i realized that I needed more than cnstruction or growing skills, so i began to read, a lot, one full week of work, with over time, and the more I read the less I understood, so I decided to build a small model, with some simple items, and this is the result.
The system can hold 4 plants, and has 4 aquarium fish (which rigth now i don't remember the kind they are).
That picture is teh finished second model, the first failed due to some issues with the construction materials (mostly recycled stuff) and those plants pictured there died.
Now I germinated directly in the growbed and so far seems to be holding, Ph is on the high side (between 7,5 and 8) and nitrites are in excess of ,05 mg/l (which if i understood properly, is a good amount of excess).
I reduced the amount of feed a bit and still trying to figure how to lower the Ph (water is really hard here and the buffering thing I don't understand completely yet).
I made some more changes, in the bell syphon and location of the water pump to make it easier to aireate the water and now things are looking more or less stable and going forward.
So, I got a little carried away with this intro, but here is the picture, I will post a more recent one with the basil and lettuce plantules that managed to grow.

Any feedback is appreciated

Attachment:
File comment: The APU-1.2
Captura.PNG
Captura.PNG [ 713.26 KiB | Viewed 424 times ]

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My test system
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"La comodidad te hace debil"
"Comfort makes you weak"


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 Post subject: Re: My test system
PostPosted: Jun 10th, '18, 10:22 
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>> the more I read the less I understood

modern, first world issue that one :D

#1 is you don't need the siphon and you can often make AP much more simple than people on the internet suggest. There is a bit of an issue with people brandishing their excellence in complexity....particularly on places like YouTube.

Like most things there are lots of ways to do it and at end of the day there are just a few fundamentals that are basically applied to a variety of scenarios.

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 Post subject: Re: My test system
PostPosted: Jun 10th, '18, 11:59 
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dlf_perth wrote:
>> the more I read the less I understood

modern, first world issue that one :D

Jaja I kind of ramble when thinking :D after I finish writing I tougth "Dude, you will get a lot of tl;dr on this"
dlf_perth wrote:
#1 is you don't need the siphon and you can often make AP much more simple than people on the internet suggest. There is a bit of an issue with people brandishing their excellence in complexity....particularly on places like YouTube.
Like most things there are lots of ways to do it and at end of the day there are just a few fundamentals that are basically applied to a variety of scenarios.

The options I have are constant flow or a different siphon?
Or I am unaware (very possible) of another method for water flow and filtering, and root aireation?
Thank you for the input, I will research a little more on this

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 Post subject: Re: My test system
PostPosted: Jun 22nd, '18, 00:50 
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OK, I have been running the test system for a couple of months now, no plant success but at least the fish still alive; I also got a chemistry kit and started testing the water, this gave me an idea of what can be wrong.

I started to measure Ph, NO2, GK and GH today, the readings don't look good as you can see:
  • PH 8
  • NO2 0,15/0,20 mg/l (I was not sure about this so we voted at home and everione agrees is between those values)
  • GH: 19ºdGH
  • KH: 9ºdKH

As you can see, the PH is off, big time, and the hardness of the water migth give me some problems to bring PH to balance (that is what I understand from some reading about what is water hardness) however,I found an article where it says that peat can lower hardness, or that i can use mineral water or distilled water from the store. Rigth now my water source is a well, that can explain the hardness

Any ideas on a good approach to fix this? I will probably just go with some distilled or mineral water to beging with , but need to figure a long term fix because i have lots of water loss due to evaporation (average temp here is around 30-35 degrees Celsius.
Attachment:
File comment: Growbed with a pair of basil and a pair of lettuces
image.jpeg
image.jpeg [ 200.25 KiB | Viewed 295 times ]


Attachments:
File comment: Fishes doing their thing and acting all fishy
image.jpeg
image.jpeg [ 140.45 KiB | Viewed 295 times ]
File comment: Water flowing from the gb to the fish tank
image.jpeg
image.jpeg [ 153.54 KiB | Viewed 295 times ]

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Humberto.-
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 Post subject: Re: My test system
PostPosted: Jun 23rd, '18, 05:10 
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Figured out why the water ph was so high all the time.
I am using tap water, and I decided to test for hardness and ph to see what I have, turns out water from the tap has some fairly normal levels, Ph is 7, KH is 9, and GH is 10 (still hard water but ph is ok).
I remembered that I read how to test rocks for calcium carbonate you can use some acid (chloridric or something like that) but if you don have access to it you can use vinegar, it won't be as fast a reaction, but still you will see bubbles; in my case, it was like putting an effervescent pill in water, the rocks bubbled as if they were aerator rocks, so there, source of high Ph is my rocks. Now I just need to find a new source for grow media, will look for river rocks because for some reason here in town is really complicated to find expanded clay or similar stuff.
Any ideas on what cheap and easy grow media I can use will be highly appreciated (someone mentioned petit bottle caps but I am not sure, maybe I read wrong)


Attachments:
File comment: A view from the top, bubbles everywhere
image.jpeg
image.jpeg [ 92.97 KiB | Viewed 259 times ]
File comment: Bobbling like an aerator rock, water looks white because of how many bubbles there are.
image.jpeg
image.jpeg [ 92.19 KiB | Viewed 259 times ]

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Humberto.-
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My test system
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"La comodidad te hace debil"
"Comfort makes you weak"
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 Post subject: Re: My test system
PostPosted: Jun 23rd, '18, 07:49 
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Bottle caps can be used but might be tricky to get enough. What about a crushed granite type media? There are plenty of other rock types which are usually cheap and readily available at soil supply stores and more pH neutral.

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