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PostPosted: Jun 25th, '08, 19:41 
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I have been browsing through the forum for a while now, the bug has bitten and the planned system is under construction now :D

First I would like to offer sincere thanks to all the members, the quality of people, systems, help and information is astounding.

Ok, my setup is planned to be in two separate systems, as I live in a temperate region I have decided to try to run one for trout and one for warmer water fish (probably silver perch.)

Part one is the cold water system, it is planned to be CHIFT PIST with insulated tank, sump and growbeds. Tank is 1100L, sump 500L and three growbeds of 700-900L.

Part two is to be in a 4.4M x 8M greenhouse. Specifications not finalized yet but probably about 3000L of tanks and 6000L in growbeds. I scored the greenhouse for $300 so that was a good start.

So the construction is progressing hoping for fish soon, the only major problem at the moment is my missus is not allowed to look at the fish! She would give them names and then not let me eat them :( I told her about the member that wanted to grow muscles as they don't have eyes :lol:

Below is the sketch-up of the cold water system. My land has a mild slope which I used to put the sump downhill to the tank.

Real pics to come soon


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cold water.png
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PostPosted: Jun 25th, '08, 20:09 
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Hey novaris, nice sketchup work. Nice to have another Vic on board.
Geek Gardener is hosting a Vic meet Saturday the 5th. They are informal and good for picking up hints, meeting other aquaponic loonies etc. If you can make it, it would be great. We will be joined by royalty from Townsville, should be fun all round.

Like you, I picked up a cheap greenhouse, mine was 7m by 5m, cost about the same as yours including mucho shade cloth. Beware, final cost including fish has nudged 4 grand. However it was a fantastic experience putting it all together with dad last winter.

You are prolly a bit late for trout unless ur ready to go on that system. You can get 150mm trout from Macclesfield that will grow out before summer.
If I was you, get the system ready next couple months and run with silvers first. John at Glenwaters will have silver fingerlings from September. You will be able to pick up 100mmtrout say end of March next and get 6 good months growing into them before the water temps become a problem.

Post lots of pics, it will keep u motivated when u hit the wall. It happened to me a few times, but u look at the pics and realise how far u have come and how close u are to finishing things.
Good luck and keep us all informed.


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PostPosted: Jul 6th, '08, 17:40 
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Ok finally a picture :) The sump tank is now done and is temporary home to 60 small trout, in the background you can see the stands for the first growbed and the main tank. The sump is currently hooked up to a temporary 200l growbed with some self seeded lettuce and silverbeet in it.

I had my first HSM the day after I added the fish. I topped up the tank came out a bit later and several trout had bailed out. two were still alive so I rigged up a bucket with air and pumping but they only survived a few hours. So tank cover was now a priority.

Sump has air line and continuous pumping at about 1000lpm, trout are only being given 1/2 feeds every other day at the moment, I have plenty of tank and rain water to do water changes as required during cycling. I am getting fluctuating ammonia conversion which seems to relate to temperature. Average water temp is 10deg C, daily temp variation is water +/- 1deg C, air +/- 7deg C.
Currently I am keeping Ammonia < 2 and nitrite < 0.25.

Trout are very active and decimate feed in about 20 seconds.

I hope to have main growbed and tank online in the next 2 - 3 weeks.


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sump.jpg
sump.jpg [ 57.75 KiB | Viewed 12182 times ]

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PostPosted: Jul 6th, '08, 18:32 
60 little trout in 500ltr, with a 200ltr uncycled growbed.... humm...

Yep I think you'll definitly need to be ready and do some water changes...

At those temps it's going to take some time to cycle.... and 200ltr isn't a lot of growbed... hence bacterial capacity.....

Might be enough to get you started if you can get it cycled before the fish grow bigger....

I'd be adding another 200ltr tub asap I think....

Don't see anyway around the ultimate need for water changes though... unless you can heat your sump a bit to speed up the bacterial process....

If you could... great... at least you have some additional aeration and a high flow rate as well...

Good luck... and keep testing and posting your results in case help is needed.


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PostPosted: Jul 6th, '08, 18:59 
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Seriously, this cant be healthy.
Seriously, this cant be healthy.
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Depends how small they are rupe, and how much C1 feeds them, woops I mean novaris :D

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PostPosted: Jul 6th, '08, 19:17 
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I am watching carefully and the current setup was seeded from a humonia setup that had cycled over the last 5-6 weeks. New 700L GB is close to finished, and I have 9000L water available to do changes, at our place it only takes 50mm rain to refill the main water tank. Overflow from the tank goes to the wife's earth garden :)

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PostPosted: Jul 14th, '08, 18:40 
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Things are progressing gradually :)

Trout are all doing well, I am getting good ammonia conversion but I am having mild problem with nitrites building up. Luckily I can do water changes as required I am currently keeping the system at:
pH 7.2
Ammonia 1 - 2
Nitrite 1
Nitrates at about 5 but lettuce and silverbeet are starting to grow.

I am feeding about 3/4 the recommended amount daily.

I am a little unsure if the nitrite needs to be diluted more? Water temp averages about 10c so I am not worried about the ammonia.

The 1st 700-800L growbed is almost ready, main tank should be done some time next week.

Picks of progress below.

Fist pick is the GB ready for load testing, which all went Ok. I know some people now don't bother washing gravel but I can afford to lose some weight so what the hell. I don't have a ute or fire hose so I used the washing basket in the cement mixer trick (picks later as they are on the wife's camera).

Second pick is the tank stand ready for insulation and tank.


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Grow bed near done.jpg
Grow bed near done.jpg [ 124.79 KiB | Viewed 12118 times ]
tank base.jpg
tank base.jpg [ 116.12 KiB | Viewed 12103 times ]

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PostPosted: Jul 14th, '08, 20:37 
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Seriously, this cant be healthy.
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That looks great, the water readings are fine too :)

I recommend just doing small (5-10%) water changes daily, rather than big ones every couple of days.

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PostPosted: Jul 14th, '08, 20:41 
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Get that baby hooked up quick! I understand that trying to cycle a system in the cold with trout is a challenge. One trick I did that seemed to help, I put paint strainer bags full of gravel into the fish tank to start the seasoning process before the additional grow beds were done. Once the next grow bed was done, I could put that small amount of pre-seasoned gravel into the middle strata of it for a little quicker seeding action. Then I would re-fill the paint strainer bags with more fresh gravel for the next bed and stick them into the tank again. This works better if there is plenty of aeration and you already have a huge load of gravel on stand by for the project to move along step by step.

Some salt in the system can help against nitrite toxicity. If you keep the salt level below 3 ppt, is shouldn't bother your plants too much and it can help reduce stress on fish too.

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PostPosted: Aug 3rd, '08, 15:50 
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Time for my latest update :D

Since I got the trout I have lost a couple that jumped out of the tank, one that trapped itself in a fold of the pond liner and one that I don't know what happened (about 10 days ago) I will include a pic of the unknown cause of death.

I Moved the fish from the sump to the tank today. All went well and they are feeding well in their new home. The first of the main grow beds is now working, its about 800L and is filling in 25m, bell siphon drains in 8m. I have a continuous flow into the tank with an adjustable flow rate to the GB the rest returns straight to the sump should be turning over the tank water about 1.5 times per hour.

The temporary 200L GB was not quite able to handle the current fish load at the moment. So I did small water changes every couple of days.


current water test
temp 9c
pH = 7.4 (usual 7.2 new GB scoria has lifted pH)
ammonia: = 0.5 after a feed and our tank water usually reads over 0.25, thanks to the possums
nitrite = 0
nitrate = 15

By accident I have learned to control the feed when needed, for the first few days I did not feed then I began to increase feed (could not resist, they swim around with open mouths :cry: ), but I had misread the weight reading and it turns out for 3 weeks I fed only one tenth of the amount I should have :shock: Anyway all bar one survived and I have been feeding full amount for about a week now.

Pics to follow.


Attachments:
File comment: The tank is now running, sump, grow-bed and tank all need painting with thermal insulation paint and they are finished.
Start of system.jpg
Start of system.jpg [ 106.16 KiB | Viewed 11982 times ]
File comment: This is the fish that just turned up dead, when I went to clean him I found a small amount of blood came from the vent and also the gills.
fish dead.jpg
fish dead.jpg [ 79.29 KiB | Viewed 11974 times ]

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PostPosted: Aug 3rd, '08, 18:27 
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Outbackozzie wrote:
Depends how small they are rupe, and how much C1 feeds them, woops I mean novaris :D



:geek: :geek: :geek:

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PostPosted: Aug 3rd, '08, 20:26 
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Seriously, this cant be healthy.
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Hehe your a bit slow C1 :D

Novaris - I just feed mine as much as they will eat :cheers:

No deaths since bringing them home. 1 dead fish is nothing to be concerned about though, they just do it sometimes :|

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PostPosted: Aug 4th, '08, 12:50 
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Go Further, Faster. :lol: he ain't going no where :shock:

OBO is right, sometimes they just die, I would be keeping an eye on the rest tho.

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PostPosted: Sep 9th, '08, 20:09 
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I am intrigued by the "GB sequencer" mentioned on your Sketchup drawing

please explain

frank


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PostPosted: Sep 9th, '08, 22:36 
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he must have seen the price for the graduate programs ;)

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