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 Post subject: Skeg in the hills
PostPosted: Jun 29th, '13, 22:13 
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Howdy folks,
I have finally started the main system :cheers:
Gravel cleaned, ft level, sump installed, trenches dug, drain laid, supply glued, gb's levelled, sw filter made, power connected, water filled, slo connected and contact.
3 months of planning, replanning and changing.
What an effort, blood, sweat, tears and a pair of gumboots.

Maybe I should start at the beginning.
I'll make this brief cos I know u like photos and in sets of 3's this could take a while...
I joined the ap revolution three months ago when brother J made me get a second hand byap kit, 1kl &3kl ft's,4 500l gb's, an ap test kit, a heap of fittings and a few bags of clay pebbles.
I began with the 1kl ft and 1 500l gb to get started fishless cycling. Got a bit carried away with Charlie carp and had a few weeks of massive amm readings and introduced 20 rainbow trout. This was just the start of my main system to get a handle on the whole thing. I've been reading all I can and following this forum like a man possessed, if I put this much effort into school I could have been anything I'd have liked!!!
So while the veggies have been growing I've been building the real system, digging, moving levelling, re digging, removing and re levelling... I'll run ya thru it. 2 ibc's joined underground sump, 6000l pump thru 25mm to 3kl ft. 90mm slo into blue drum swirl, 90mm header to 40mm feeder pipes to 20mm gb distribution, 3 beds(so far,have 1 ibc gb and 3 bbs to plumb in the future) 1xcracked gravel, 1x18mm pea gravel and 1 canna clay, into 90mm drain back to sump.(sounds so simple now..)
Anyway I've just flicked the pump today and the cycling has begun with a bit of help from a few buckets of water from sys 1. So far so good.
Stay tuned for more pics :D
Special thanks to JJL for the help.


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 Post subject: Re: Skeg in the hills
PostPosted: Jun 29th, '13, 22:31 
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So this is the site, stage 1 up and running and the sump hole excavator dug, clay soil, I've dug enough holes here to know the futility of hand digging a hole big enough for 2 ibc's... No turning back now.


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 Post subject: Re: Skeg in the hills
PostPosted: Jun 30th, '13, 07:25 
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I'll start with the sump. I had the hole dug so I just needed to dig the level, extra width and straighten the sides. Fitted the two ibc's then put supports over the top, all easily remove able if need be. I needed to be able to push a wheel barrow over the top so strengthened in a few places. I had some 12mm plastic lying around so used it around the edges and put a couple of old jarrah doors over the middle for access. Then some rubber I had laying around and finally some synthetic grass over the top. Tanks joined with bulk head fittings and 50mm pipe and a valve I had in the shed.
So far so good :thumbright:


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File comment: Couple of doors from off the side of the road.
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File comment: And finished with a bit of grass also from off the side of the road.
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 Post subject: Re: Skeg in the hills
PostPosted: Jun 30th, '13, 07:42 
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Looking good Skeggley! Is there a chance that the sump hole might fill with water?, not sure how long the metal IBC frame will last if it is submerged for any length of time...

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 Post subject: Re: Skeg in the hills
PostPosted: Jun 30th, '13, 10:35 
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Hiya gazza, nah, unless we get some extreme rain it's all good, it was covered up last rain we had and the only water in there was condensation. Worst case scenario, it floods, I've got a new fish tank :thumbleft:
When I clean up the construction site I'll put in a ramp to redirect the water just in case.

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 Post subject: Re: Skeg in the hills
PostPosted: Jun 30th, '13, 15:32 
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Good luck skeggley,

Next time I need a big hole dug I'll get you over for a BBQ.

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 Post subject: Re: Skeg in the hills
PostPosted: Jun 30th, '13, 18:36 
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Grow bed, I planted quite a few plants in the first gb, heard you could plant them really close so I did :) I thought I could transplant them later into the main system as I'd heard it was easy to transplant too.
We've had a few salads and stir frys in the last few weeks so its been enough to keep the other half off my back while I suffered a severe case of aquaponica :D
Been gardening for a while and am impressed with the production. Looking forward to planting out the new beds and experimenting.


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File comment: Last week of June.
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 Post subject: Re: Skeg in the hills
PostPosted: Jul 2nd, '13, 22:01 
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The system is cycling with Charlie carp. Quite a sound with the water splashing in different parts of the system, drains being the biggest culprit. im using the cheap ebay pump in the sump at the moment and it is struggling to pump the head, still filling the three gbs in 15mins though but its at its limit i think.
We filled the system with rainwater from the green pool. Now I'm wondering if the algae will clear in a couple of weeks when I'm hoping the cycling will finish and i can start introducing fish. I'm adding a 20l bucket or so of cycled water a day. Don't want to put 5kl of tap water in if it can be helped. Am I just feeding the algae with the cc?
I'll start sprinkling seeds into the beds this week to begin the garden.
We haven't had much rain here for a while, just had the 2nd driest June on record. I've got a fruit fly magnet apricot tree here and it hasn't even dropped its leaves yet!
Beautiful sunny days with cool nights. Winter?
Inconceivable.
Got a list of things other than ap to do around the place so whilst the cycling is taking place and I'm playing the patience game, other overdue jobs take centre stage.
All good. :)


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File comment: 90mm supply from the swirl...
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File comment: To the 40mm distributors to the gb's.
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File comment: 90mm drain in position
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 Post subject: Re: Skeg in the hills
PostPosted: Jul 3rd, '13, 05:55 
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Loving the pictures!
Is that a tomato plant I see? Perth winter tomatoes? Jealous.

I love your aquaponica obsession .

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 Post subject: Re: Skeg in the hills
PostPosted: Jul 3rd, '13, 06:41 
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Hiya Jay, yep there's a couple in the gb there, chucked in some old seeds when I first set up and are really starting to take off, I'd like to get some bb cut and transplant them but I've been banned from ap for a few weeks while I catch up the job list.... Not sure what's going on with the weather here, I had to turn the air con on in the car yesterday! :dontknow:

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 Post subject: Re: Skeg in the hills
PostPosted: Jul 3rd, '13, 08:06 
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Yep the lack of rain is a bummer, but can't knock wearing shorts and shirt in the middle of winter! :headbang:

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 Post subject: Re: Skeg in the hills
PostPosted: Jul 10th, '13, 22:19 
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Hooray rain.... Mud... Mess.
10 days in since the 2nd system started, test today; .25 amm, 0 rites, 40 rates, 8 ph. Looking good.
Still swapping water daily. Covered the ft with black plastic to destroy the algae and is starting to clear :cheers: .
Have been transplanting the bok choi and leeks into the new system, really like the lack of transplant shock.
Sprinkled some seeds into a gb too, let the rain sprout them.
Going to change the sw filter into rff in the near future, make adapters so I can switch between the two later when the fish get moved. Was thinking about putting a couple of trout into the big tank whilst cycling and have ordered a 50 lpm air pump which I will rig up to come on when the pump is off as am planning to only run the pump every second hour during the nite whilst is is quite chilly.
Moving some pavers round to the ap area, covering the pipe work and tidying up between whipper snipping, chopping wood and other neglected duties.
Temporary system veggies going great guns still, always something to munch on. Tomatoes getting bigger so need to get the bbs cut and plumbed along with the ibc gb cleaned painted and plumbed. Small steps.
Happy days.

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 Post subject: Re: Skeg in the hills
PostPosted: Jul 11th, '13, 15:10 
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Man, You deserve a medal. I was knackered digging the pad for my shed, in sand, not that red stuff you have to contend with.

Looking great. Love the turf!

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 Post subject: Re: Skeg in the hills
PostPosted: Jul 12th, '13, 21:23 
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Ha, not fun digging, levelling and now filling (did my shed a few years back too) I could always see a light at the end of the tunnel, means to an end.(just given up smoking too so took my mind off it, only missed it when I'd finished for the day and I stood back and admired my hard work with a beer in the hand.) I read so much about expansions I wanted to prepare early so probably got a bit carried away.... I was more impressed with my levels in the pipe work, when I tested the drain I poured a cup of water in the end pipe, 8M away and got 1/2 cup return to the st. :D

Tested again this arvo and have got my nitrate spike 13 days in, in winter too.
Fish seem to have an issue with their top fin, in that it looks like the top of it is deteriorating, need to take a photo with a manual focus camera. Prob lost most of the salt with my water transferring so will drop in at a pool shop on the way home from work and grab a bag and chuck in a kilo.

Days seem to get shorter as I get older, so much to do, so little time.

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 Post subject: Re: Skeg in the hills
PostPosted: Jul 12th, '13, 21:26 
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Looks like easy digging compared to the crap we have in Kal.... :)

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