Backyard Aquaponics
http://www.backyardaquaponics.com/forum/

where to buy expanded clay, fish and other stuff in Melb?
http://www.backyardaquaponics.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=7&t=19564
Page 1 of 4

Author:  Ark [ Nov 16th, '13, 13:05 ]
Post subject:  where to buy expanded clay, fish and other stuff in Melb?

So im completely new to this, but got my first IBC, picked up an angle grinder, a drill, and raring to get started. Now I can probably figure out where to get the pvc piping and so on, and make that work. But dont know where to start looking for expanded clay at a decent price, also not sure what sort of pump to get, or what sort of price i should be paying for it.

Also hoping someone can point out some places that I may be able to source fish from, though i am not quite up to that part yet :)


I live in Cranbourne (south east of melbourne) and anywhere this side of the CBD is probably ok to get to. Will i be better off ordering all the stuff off ebay?

Many thanks,

Author:  Live Beyond [ Nov 20th, '13, 16:33 ]
Post subject:  Re: where to buy expanded clay, fish and other stuff in Melb

Hi Ark

We have clay for sale at $30 a bag until end of November.
We don't sell fish, but Glenwaters Native Fish will have SP in mid Dec.


Regards
Dean

Author:  Yavimaya [ Nov 20th, '13, 16:43 ]
Post subject:  Re: where to buy expanded clay, fish and other stuff in Melb

I get my trout from macclesfield.
i got my clay from garden world for $38.50/bag, is that a good price? no idea. :shrug:

Author:  earthbound [ Nov 20th, '13, 16:44 ]
Post subject:  Re: where to buy expanded clay, fish and other stuff in Melb

I don't know... First post in 2 years and he's advertising.... Do you wanna mention the pots while your at it mate? :D

Author:  IceManDude [ Nov 20th, '13, 19:40 ]
Post subject:  Re: where to buy expanded clay, fish and other stuff in Melb

Macclesfield would be the closest to you for trout otherwise its off to glenwater in glenburn for natives.
As for clay... look around but when I can a trailer load of 14mm scoria for less than 2 bags of clay balls I don't see the attraction... but that's just me.

Author:  Ark [ Nov 21st, '13, 05:57 ]
Post subject:  Re: where to buy expanded clay, fish and other stuff in Melb

Thanks for the info.

I found a hydroponics store near my office that sells expanded clay for $30 per 50L so i may grab there.

Thanks for ideas on where to buy fish. I reckon i will finish building my setup by either this coming weekend or next, so December sounds about right. For Cranbourne area, what sort of, and how many fish would be recommended for about 750-800L of water and around 16 plants (herbs and chillies)

Author:  Journeyman [ Nov 21st, '13, 06:47 ]
Post subject:  Re: where to buy expanded clay, fish and other stuff in Melb

Hi Ark, welcome to the forums.

I'm in Bendigo so a little warmer on average than Cranbourne. I have a FT about that size and I have ~35 silver perch and 8 tandanus catfish in there. For most people here, that is overstocked, but it is working well so far and has been that way for about 11 months.

The normal stocking density without external (other than GB) filtering is maybe 25 fish for the size of FT you have. If you want to run more, add a swirl or radial filter (SF or RFF) and even perhaps an extra biofilter. But better to start low density stocking until things settle in.

Did you mean 16 types of plants? Because you will get considerably more plants in a GB than you will in the same area of dirt. Once your system is cycled and steadies down, you will see an explosion of growth you will not believe. If your GB is the top of the IBC you could probably quadruple that number of plants and certainly double would not over tax the system.

Also you will find a testing kit is useful in knowing what is going on. I got mine from ebay, and have NH3/NH4, NO2, NO3, an electronic pH meter and a refracter salinity tester. I also got a 20kg bag of pool salt from Bunnings - way oversize I think but at $7 for the bag, I figure it can't hurt to have it around.

Also, when you get your fish, don't forget to transition them into your water gradually. People lose fish by just dumping them into a new environment.

Good luck and have fun.

Author:  Mr Damage [ Nov 21st, '13, 07:53 ]
Post subject:  Re: where to buy expanded clay, fish and other stuff in Melb

Ark wrote:
what sort of, and how many fish would be recommended for about 750-800L of water and around 16 plants (herbs and chillies)

Your safe fish stocking density has nothing to do with your FT water capacity or the amount of plants in the system... it's the amount of wet gravel in the GB that determines how many fish the system can handle. For fast growing fish such as Trout you need a minimum of 25L of wet gravel per fish, for Silver Perch 20L+

Author:  Journeyman [ Nov 21st, '13, 08:33 ]
Post subject:  Re: where to buy expanded clay, fish and other stuff in Melb

@Mr Damage - I presumed he has an IBC top as the GB from the OP. If that is so, your formula gives him 10 SP's in his tank. From a practical PoV he can stock considerably more than that in a normal IBC system.

Author:  Mr Damage [ Nov 21st, '13, 09:11 ]
Post subject:  Re: where to buy expanded clay, fish and other stuff in Melb

An IBC cut to give a GB with a gravel depth of 300mm (320L of gravel) and flooded to about 40mm from the surface of the gravel, will give approx 270L of wet gravel... so 13 or 14 x SP's... but he can put 50 in there if he wants.

Author:  Ark [ Nov 21st, '13, 09:55 ]
Post subject:  Re: where to buy expanded clay, fish and other stuff in Melb

So when you say gravel is this the same as expanded clay? I was about to purchase 200L of expanded clay to put in the system. Should i be using something else?

Author:  Yavimaya [ Nov 21st, '13, 10:14 ]
Post subject:  Re: where to buy expanded clay, fish and other stuff in Melb

common cheap media are blue metal and scoria.

both are harder to work with than bioballs, but a lot cheaper.

all need cleaning before using, no advantage there.

you need to take vinegar to the store and test the blue metal if you plan to use that. it will bubble if alkalai.

surface area - scoria > bioballs > blue metal.

Author:  Mr Damage [ Nov 21st, '13, 10:54 ]
Post subject:  Re: where to buy expanded clay, fish and other stuff in Melb

If you are going to use gravel instead of expanded clay... ensure your grow bed is WELL supported... even with expanded clay and the bottom of my IBC grow bed having four horizontal supports, the bottom still deformed and sunk in between the supports.

Author:  jayendra [ Nov 21st, '13, 11:09 ]
Post subject:  Re: where to buy expanded clay, fish and other stuff in Melb

I've had great success with scoria 2/3rds and 1/3rd river pebbles.

see here I'm filling up with scoria
Image

Author:  Journeyman [ Nov 21st, '13, 11:58 ]
Post subject:  Re: where to buy expanded clay, fish and other stuff in Melb

If you haven't already cut your IBC consider getting another - you can leave the supports across the top of the FT one and add a couple of planks in between, and you get 2 GB's or a GB and a sump from the other IBC.

There is one fact about AP I don't think anyone disputes... you WILL expand your system if you stay doing AP. :D

I have gravel, but I wish I'd gone clay balls (not the same thing as bio balls - bb's are plastic balls with complex slots and lots of space for bacteria to colonise. I don't see any reason you couldn't use them for a GB but clay balls are something different - clay formed into balls and the baked to provide lots of cracks etc.

200L of clay balls in an IBC GB may not be enough - if there aren't enough in there you can have floating problems plus clay balls need to soak a bit - they will float initially which makes it hard to plant stuff at first. There's a balance between enough keeping costs down and in there to weigh them down by their own weight.

Scoria and bluemetal have one big disadvantage - they tend to have edges and that gets painful at planting time.

Also a good way to clean any media is to hire a cement mixer for a day. Shovel in, run hose and rinse until clean. Tip out into wheelbarrow and load the next lot. This might be overkill for a single IBC GB where you can load the GB and just run water through it until it runs clean. DON'T have the outlet running into the FT or you then have to clean that. :D

Page 1 of 4 All times are UTC + 8 hours
Powered by phpBB® Forum Software © phpBB Group
https://www.phpbb.com/