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 Post subject: A few teething problems
PostPosted: Mar 18th, '19, 08:43 
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Hey everyone, I am venturing back into Aquaponics after a four or 5 year break. Well it is amazing how much one forgets in that time. I've come across a few problems along the way and been able to solve most. But I have listed below issues that are still troubling me. If you can offer advise or help in any way it would be appreciated.

Firstly, I have used a IBC for my setup and when I invert the top to become the grow bed, obviously there are the two low sides where water sits (To the right and left of the centre screw on cap. well my question is this. One side has my bell siphon, so it drains completely but the other side will constantly hold water. Will this not become an anaerobic problem, given that I cant drain that side?

Secondly, I want to have a SLO (Solid lift outlet) in order to do so, does my down pipe have to be at a lower level than the pump in order to work via gravity or am I missing something? If it does have to be lower it presents a problem, because the pump sits on the bottom of the IBC, I.E. Ground level, so how do I get lower? Do I have to raise the tank or the pump?

Those are my two mai problems for now. Again TIA
Rod

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PostPosted: Mar 18th, '19, 11:50 
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Quote:
Firstly, I have used a IBC for my setup and when I invert the top to become the grow bed, obviously there are the two low sides where water sits (To the right and left of the centre screw on cap. well my question is this. One side has my bell siphon, so it drains completely but the other side will constantly hold water. Will this not become an anaerobic problem, given that I cant drain that side?
Nope, not necessarily. Last year I dismantled an IBC system I'd had on display in my shop for over 5 years and there was very little in the way of waste build-up in either of the two lower sides/shoulders, about 1cm max, and I don't have my bell siphon drawing from the very bottom of the GB, but about 30mm up from the base. What little build-up that was there, wasn't anearobic.

If your system is well designed, not overstocked, water is well aerated, and you have worms in the GB, they will clean up the waste. In fact, the biggest issue I faced was with a layer of built-up worm castings across the entire GB, about an inch thick, at and above the high water mark. It had the consistency of soft clay.

Being worm castings, they were just about pure nutrient, my plants loved it. Every few months I would clear the layer out of about a 1/4 of the bed at a time by scooping the top 2-3 inches of expanded clay media out into a large tub with a heap of 6mm holes drilled in it, like a colander, which was then lowered into another large tub that was half full of system water, swish the beads around until they were clean, then put them back in the GB. The dirty, nutrient rich water was then put around shrubs out on the verge in front of the shop, they absolutely loved it.

Have a squiz at this thread, it contains photo's of the GB clean out, including pics of the build-up in the shoulders of the IBC and the layer of worm castings I mentioned... http://aquaponics-forum.com/threads/gro ... tion.8541/

Quote:
Secondly, I want to have a SLO (Solid lift outlet) in order to do so, does my down pipe have to be at a lower level than the pump in order to work via gravity or am I missing something? If it does have to be lower it presents a problem, because the pump sits on the bottom of the IBC, I.E. Ground level, so how do I get lower? Do I have to raise the tank or the pump?
Bit hard to get a mental picture of exactly what you are asking, maybe draw a quick plan, in side view so we can see what you are saying about heights.

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PostPosted: Mar 18th, '19, 16:57 
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With a SLO in the fish tank the water and fish waste usually goes onto your growbed then from there drains into a sump (lowest point)

Pump in sump , pumps water back to fish tank (I like this setup as pump doesn't have to handle fish waste solids from my big fish)

Alternate method is Fish tank SLO to sump , pump in sump , water goes to growbeds which drain to fish tank .(might be useful in some situations such as split level garden)

If your setting up a simple pump up to growbed and drain back to fish tank system you don't need a SLO

As Damage has described have your siphon leave a bit of water in the growbeds (holes up the side of your bell ) if you constantly draw from the bottom of your growbed your water wont clear properly (sediment goes round and round)

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