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 Post subject: Re: 3rotor's Progress
PostPosted: Apr 22nd, '19, 07:01 
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This is a worry, any Adelaidians know him?

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 Post subject: Re: 3rotor's Progress
PostPosted: Apr 8th, '20, 18:26 
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I'm still alive, just silly busy with 2 jobs and volunteering not to mention the kids, have been focusing on other projects as well! im the kind of person that puts in all my efforts into a few things and they have 100% of my attention!

I was pressed at the time to at least dig out the hole and fill it in with all the left over steel and ibcs that were hanging around in the yard; and i've just been flat out with getting a business off the ground and when you see a good opportunity you have to go with it.
Also the mentor i had initially to get me started with the project has moved to WA, and i got up to the stage where i needed to put more money into the build and arrange somehow a sump to be made as i couldn't find a drop in solution.

I am nearly the completion of my current project a car ive owned for over 20yrs and i saw a moment where i could help out a mate with establishing his workshop in turn getting my car done for a nut and bolt restore.
I do appreciate all your messages, i am at the mercy of the search engine and learning what to do all over again, i had some notes for circuit boards, programming ardiunos planned and sensors ordered from china. All these things lost and now have to be re-researched again! I was hoping i could find someone locally that could point me in the right direction as i know i have actually designed a complicated setup.

joblow - 25mm black poly pipe from bunnings with just regular irrigation fittings for feed water, what sort of size would you recommend for drain/dump water? thats some good guidance for the siphons thanks!

boss - yes indeed mate, its a mazda rx7 ive been working on. So far over the years we haven't seen much water come in from the grass or underneath; here in adelaide it never rains :D the corrugated iron is sunken into the ground a further 75mm and the totes are sitting on steel pallets on top of clay.

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 Post subject: Re: 3rotor's Progress
PostPosted: Apr 18th, '20, 21:29 
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made a start to the build this year, and i loaded up on the bunnings and got my wishlist ready.

managed to get the wife on board and let me us the credit card

heres the bounty: (pump, stuff for siphons, some trial fittings)

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and how it panned out:
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needs some more 65mm caps and another 2 ibc for the sump

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 Post subject: Re: 3rotor's Progress
PostPosted: Apr 21st, '20, 22:21 
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had a play with the siphons today, and i couldn't get them to cycle on que, the stand pipe isnt level so i think that isnt helping, will try again tomorrow with some more bracing - if the grow media was in there it would hold it straight and wouldn't allow air locks in the system.

I also think i might have made the bells too short

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 Post subject: Re: 3rotor's Progress
PostPosted: Aug 23rd, '22, 11:16 
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Oh so many starts and stops with this project, life keeps getting in the way. shifting interstate and working FIFO taking up oportunities that up. Even helped startup a small business and setup our own airbnb in tailem bend. We have settled back in to adelaide and ive managed to continue on again.

Mentor moved away, and another AP guy got married and i havent seen him in ages :( so lots of research on youtube and following alot of Robs Aquaponics to get me moving with a bit of vigor.

It started with a redesign of the backyard and another plan. something that wasnt that apparent when i layed out the initial system was the angle of the sun during winter, leaving my growbeds in darkness, so i ended up swapping over my beds where the IBCs were planned.
I also needed alot more room than i thought, i set out an additional 3.5m x 6m, removed one of the grow beds and changed a whole lot of things around.

2x media grow beds (1/3 filled with blue metal rock, 2/3 clay balls)
1x floating raft bed
2x half barrel dutch bucket beds, planning to expand to 6 more if they prove to work
2x fish tank IBCs, used for seperation and scale
2x In ground sumps
bio reactor
solids lifting overflow

unfortunatly with initial design of my system, i shouldnt have put the huge sumps in the ground, they would of better left slightly under the grow beds, as a result the meager 6000ltr pump i have has no head and is hardly up for the task of shifting all that water just over 2m to the top of the fish tanks. I have since ordered a new dc pump 20000 ltr to cover all the additional height and fittings that have hard 90 D bends in it. All my piping will eventually be 40mm from the pump into 'wye' fittings (tee fittings are too restrictive) into 25mm poly and 50mm return into sump/filter

Image

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Last edited by 3rotor on Aug 23rd, '22, 11:34, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: Re: 3rotor's Progress
PostPosted: Aug 23rd, '22, 11:33 
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whats left of the grass we put down
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new setting out, kids have out grown the playground
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wife said i can cut up the backyard as long as she doesnt have to see 'the science experiment'
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fruit trees for along our western side, guava, chilli, mango, lime
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added another 90mm pipe for air lines, sensors, additional feed lines if needed in the future
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started plumbing in feed and drain lines
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cut down the grow bed frame to suit large 'dutch buckets at the end'
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painted all surfaces for algae reduction
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plumbing for grow beds completed, used a 1" manifold for feed, and 50mm drain (this should of been upgraded to 90mm) i ended up putting tee fittings on the 50mm drain pipe to help with overflow.
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beds and buckets filled with 20-30mm blue metal, tested with vinegar
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hydroton/clay pebbles cleaned and washed
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aeration pump received, testing for supply and noise
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first plants going in, strawberries and tomato cycling started
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 Post subject: Re: 3rotor's Progress
PostPosted: Aug 23rd, '22, 11:46 
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One week down on the cycling progress, i am adding 5 capfuls every 2 days of Charlie Carp system water total currently would be around 800-900ltr

Trying to get system prepared and cycled for middle of spring another 6 weeks away

Ph 6.8-7.2 (have had alot of rain)
Ammonia 0.25 ppm
Nitrite 0.25 ppm
Nitrate 0 ppm

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 Post subject: Re: 3rotor's Progress
PostPosted: Sep 6th, '22, 23:18 
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my 20'000 ltr DC Pump has arrived and i have jerry rigged it in while im waiting for the handful of parts to come in. Its great to be able to control the rate and fiddle with the wattage as well as the valves ive installed everywhere.

another quick update, have now had my ammonia spike and then my nitrite spike.. have now managed to get them both to consistent levels. ammonia jumped to 3-4, and my nitrite was sitting very high at 4 for a few days. I caved in and kept taking water out

bought a handful of goldfish to help keep the bacteria fed as i have ran out of charlie carp, i was putting in around 5-7 capfuls every 1/2 days for my 800ltr sump and 2 grow beds currently running.

have put a few plants in and now up to day 21. results are as such and consistent 3 days in a row:

ammonia: 0.2~0.25
nitrite: 0.15~0.3
nitrate: 0 (suspect this could be due to the low temp we are having in Adelaide coming out of winter, and the plants i have in)
PH tends to spike to 7.6 with the amount of rain we have had, but its hovering around 7.2

My 25mm feed and all the bends have restricted the flow quite a bit in the system, so i decided to double down and upgrade all the 'manifold' plumbing to 40mm and take out every 90D bend in the system. Everything is now running on a wye/Y fitting and has a 40mm feed then into 25mm. Once this was setup i was able to turn down the pump 7%! and still have the same flow rate as previous.
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lots of cutting and testing, be nice if it would just stop raining for me to finish!
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have bought the drums for the bio reactor and SLO filter, K1 Media from WA, a bunch more 40/50mm fittings and timber sheets for the fish tank covers.

further research on the fish: i think im keen to get some catfish to start then move up to get some kind of perch.

great to see the end of winter, and fingers crossed ill be getting the rest done soon enough

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 Post subject: Re: 3rotor's Progress
PostPosted: Sep 10th, '22, 23:11 
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consistent results on the water testing now, got trace ammonia and nitrite but still no nitrate

completed the lids for the fish tanks, just need some paint and again for it to stop raining for more than 2 days in a row

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have completed the plumbing for the radial flow settler and bio reactor
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the second outlet will be from the other fish tank, if and when its needed
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as expected the first wet test i did, all the 25mm uniseals leaked. i was very careful with the holesaw but unfortunately they have slow leaks. So had to take them all out and reset them with thread tape

was hoping just to use silicon or polyurethane but as i found out basically nothing cures/sticks to hpde, here's what i did to fix them:

How to fix a unisel

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 Post subject: Re: 3rotor's Progress
PostPosted: Sep 12th, '22, 18:23 
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Pretty nice ' elaborate ' setup you have there. Time & effort usually bring success.

You've got that covered.

Won't be long now to reap the rewards!

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 Post subject: Re: 3rotor's Progress
PostPosted: Sep 21st, '22, 07:00 
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quick update, have plumbed up

one of the fish tanks
started up the radial flow settler
installed simple temp monitoring probes
Painted the lids and installed aerators (they dont have as much bubbles as i thought, unless the pump is set above 80% duty cycle, which is 160w+)

Image

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tomatoes are doing that well i picked up a few more
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have started buying things for the 6x planned constant flow drums out the back of the shed, been doing alot of testing with different plants to see what they prefer more, DWC/flood drain/constant flow

33 days in now, and im still getting consistent water testing results:
PH 7.2~7.4
Ammonia 0.25-0.35
Nitrite 0.25
Nitrate 0

still have the 10 goldfish in and feeding once a day to keep the ammonia churning over.

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 Post subject: Re: 3rotor's Progress
PostPosted: Sep 25th, '22, 17:20 
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Wow....this has been a labour of love & I admire your determination to get your system up & running!
I am glad to see your tanks are no longer under the grow beds - access is needed for a variety of reasons, as I have found on numerous occasions.
Barramundi used to be available from West Beach (I haven't purchased for a few years) & would be a good fish over the warmer months.

Well done [CLAPPING HANDS SIGN]

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 Post subject: Re: 3rotor's Progress
PostPosted: Sep 30th, '22, 00:19 
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team41 wrote:
Wow....this has been a labour of love & I admire your determination to get your system up & running!
I am glad to see your tanks are no longer under the grow beds - access is needed for a variety of reasons, as I have found on numerous occasions.
Barramundi used to be available from West Beach (I haven't purchased for a few years) & would be a good fish over the warmer months.

Well done [CLAPPING HANDS SIGN]

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thanks 41,
have learnt the error of my early ways :D about the only good thing about the tanks being underground is the temp during summer. It was hard enough to get the goldfish out of the sump the other day!
Had i did it again i would of put a few half tanks under the grow beds as a sump
has jade perch been raised in SA? i am a bit worried about the cooler months. even now the sump is under 15 during the day most of the time.


update:

started adjusting the radial flow settler, i think i need something slightly longer than the height of a 20ltr bucket, it does a much better with the solids - not that i have many currently
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bio reactor: still turning over slowly. will see if the one airstone is enough. the ebay venturis are dud, they just block up daily, restrict so much flow AND do a poor job at aerating the water! hands down useless
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fish tank:
have shifted all 12 goldfish into the big tank, and bought my first 10 silver perch. They all spend most of the time hiding in the pvc pipes and on the bottom. Not eating much - have heard that if they stocking density are low the fish don't have the prey drive to eat them self silly, low water temp and 20 fish under 6cm for 900ltr. I figured id give them 2-3 weeks if i don't kill any and then finally get my order in when i decide what to actually raise.
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beds:
corn taking place as with the tomatoes, lettuce gone ballistic and all the white aphids have eaten all the cabbage to death :(
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DWC Bed:
started planting out, shifted strawberries, bok choy and lettuce over
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Tomatoes needed some kind of trellis, so i have put together a make shift one temporary until i shift them all to the back of the shed. Actually just need 2 more blue food quality barrels, no stock for 6 weeks! then i can setup all 6 half barrels
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water quality:
still no change i think we are 42 days in, added a bottle of bactabooster no change after 3 days. still dont know if i can call the system 'cycled' if i leave it any later im going to miss the spring warm weather

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 Post subject: Re: 3rotor's Progress
PostPosted: Sep 30th, '22, 19:30 
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I haven't heard of Jade perch being successful in SA, Silvers are common though & I have some that must be 8 years old. The barramundi & trout are good seasonal options.
I am surprised your system hasn't cycled yet - it is certainly taking its time!

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 Post subject: Re: 3rotor's Progress
PostPosted: Oct 26th, '22, 18:44 
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finally getting glimpses of sunlight! here we are 4 weeks later and i have most of the tomatoes fighting for sun! We have harvested two MASSIVE lettuce, basil and strawberries. So great to see some results and get the family involved. DWC bed appears to work very well, i think i will need to move to a larger size netcup - good problems to have

-- FISH --
unfortunately the fish i have are still too small and young and i'm getting lots of nutrient loss in the leaves, we bought yet another 15 goldfish and they have been taking the feed whenever the temp has risen over 19deg. Silver perch have been still very skiddish but are feeding after the goldies

we have put our order in for December run, 40 silver perch and 20 tandarus catfish. Have plenty of space for them i will most likely put all the silvers in together to get them to eat up over summer and then split once the temp starts to drop. Have read they tend to eat more when there is more fish to contend with.


-- Issues --
I have had some annoying issues with the siphons not starting in the far end grow bed, hence the stunted growth. Need to try a few other designs and figure out why they work a few times a day not every-time!

Algae has moved into the sump and it looks like ill need to cover up a bit more, its not a solid green film its more a brown heavy stain.

-- Filters --
Bio reactor now have another aerator stone in and has been churning/cooking over really well, been adding 4-5 ltr of media a week and within a few days the fresh ones turn to a slight brown/tan color which is working out great!

Moved to weekly checks on testing, i will increase this as the water in the fish tank increases towards summer.

Have removed the junk aerators out of the system, they take so much flow out of the system and produce so little bubbles and air, have switched back to a fountain style fall - filling the fish tank and ive managed to drop my pump speed down another 15% and 'more' flow. Done two radial flow settler cleans, and it appears to be working well with the makeshift bucket i placed in, i still think there could be a better way to slow down the water entering the drum. Most of the solids were uneaten food but it has been working very well.

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-- Results --

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beans and sage setting up shop!
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