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 Post subject: orcys brisbane system
PostPosted: Mar 6th, '10, 18:48 
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well, i've been lurking around here a while now, and have finally been given permission to start an aquaponics system in the back yard. This system has to pass the "must be pretty" test, so i'm kind of limited in my ability to create the perfect system, but I think I have come up with a design that will work.

FT will be 2000-3000l inground pond. dug into clay, with a pondliner. some sort of rocky surround, with a small waterfall at the back for aeration. Depth from 300mm to around 900mm. This will probably initially house some ornamental fish, but planning on a couple of tandanus and perhaps a couple of jade perch as well to see how they go. otherwise, big goldies, or perhaps a whole mess of guppies/white clouds/danios. i've always wanted a tank with a few thousand or so of those, and I think the brissie weather will allow them to live outside the whole year. theres also the chance of some water-lillies in the pond, depending on the "prettyness quotient" i achieve elsewhere.

either way, there will initially only be one growbed (one of the commercial fibreglass 500odd litre type jobs), with plans in place for a second assuming I can prove that we can actually grow stuff in it. I'm thinking 20 minus blue metal or 20-25mm riverpebbles for the growbeds. river pebbles will fix the "pretty" test, but I believe the blue metal or drainage gravel will be much cheaper, and probably mostly invisible under the plants.

As the pond is under ground level, i'm leaning towards either a continuous flood system or a slow fill/quick drain. i'm leaning towards continuous flow simply to help keep the level of the pond continuous. As the system is severely under filtered, I'm planning on having a big tub full of duckweed to help polish the water before return to the pond, and perhaps a big tub of waterchestnuts as well. compost worms will handle the solid processing in the growbed, and the pond will be designed to allow collection of solids towards the centre of the pond for manual removal if needed. the waterfall will be supplied by a separate pump with its own solids filtering.

have I forgotten anything? I'm open to suggestions if anyone has any.

anyway, we started digging the pond today, in the belief that the ground would be softer after the rain. well, the ground was soft, and we got the first level, and most of the second level dug, then it rained, and now we have a hole full of water. I'll post some pics tomorrow, but it looks like a muddy couple of days emptying the pond so I can dig it properly.

cheers

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PostPosted: Mar 6th, '10, 19:59 
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cheers orcy2010

I wondered where all our rain had gone. :) Good luck with your system. Looking forward to the photos.

Malcolm


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PostPosted: Apr 8th, '10, 10:27 
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well, its been a while since I started, but over easter things finally got moving.
dug the pond back in march.
Image

but alas, just two days later, this happened

Image

so we had to wait for the weather to clear, and some materials to be delivered. so over easter, it was completely cleaned out, and concreted

Image
Image

then the brickwork started, and finished
Image
Image

and the two growbeds set in behind the system

Image

so now all I have to do is finish the plumbing, concrete the waterfall, render the pond, seal the render, test the flowrates, and start the whole thing up.
it will all be powered by a maxflow11000 (or some such thing I had left over from a previous project) this will be tee'd off to supply a heap fo water to the waterfall, and a small flow to the growbeds. the grownbeds will return through a smaller tank full of duckweed for final nitrate polishing.

to start with, it will have 1/2 dozen goldfish. later on, i'm thinking maybe 20 sleepycod. not so worried about the fish, more interested in growbeds. if i can prove that these two grow good vegies, i'll have open slather on setting up at least 2 or 3 more full sized BYAP style beds

hopefully i'll have more pics next week of the rendering and stuff completed

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PostPosted: Apr 8th, '10, 10:31 
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looking good....

looking forward to more pics

jT

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PostPosted: Apr 8th, '10, 11:16 
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Very nice Orcy.....

So did you manage to get her to dig most of the hole, or is that just posing for the shot... :wink: :D

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PostPosted: Apr 8th, '10, 12:02 
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It certainly looks like it will pass the "pretty" test to me. I'm looking forward to seeing your progress! Why the bricks sticking into the pond at regular intervals?


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PostPosted: Apr 8th, '10, 12:07 
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they will hold some sort of "just underwater" cover. probably poly pipe the same shape as the pond, with black netting/wire stretched over it. should be about an inch under the surface, and almost invisible.

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PostPosted: Apr 14th, '10, 07:32 
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well, got a little closer on the weekend. rendering is now complete. Just needs a good scrub out, some of the rough edges taken of the render inside the pond, and two coats of waterproofing membrane

Image
Image

Water will be pumped from the tank to the waterfall (through the back of the tank with 40mm pressure pipe). a small amount is then piped off for the two growbeds (again, still in 40mm pressure), which will return via autosyphon (32mm hansen fittins out the bottom) to the smaller black tub, which will be full of duckweed (and waterchestnuts at the right time of year), then returned by gravity to the main fishtank (50mm hansen fittting, drawing water from the bottom).

plumbing is almost complete, just have to waterproof and fill so it can all be tested. Then fill with 20mm river pebbles and plant.

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PostPosted: Apr 14th, '10, 09:59 
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Nice one Orcy. Looks like it'll be very attractive when complete.

You mentioned a 'just underwater' cover. Does this mean the fish will not be able to reach the surface?


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PostPosted: Apr 14th, '10, 10:09 
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I'm still not sure on that one. I really want some sort of cover to keep birds and children and dogs out of the pond, but I really dont want to see it either.

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PostPosted: Apr 14th, '10, 10:27 
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Yeah, I know what you mean.

I had my little niece come to stay so was forced to build a more robust cover than the one I threw together to keep down sunlight. Not really happy I can't just walk out and look at the fish without sliding it back... which is what I have to do at feed time too. However I know I'd want my fish to be able to get to the surface if they wanted to.


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PostPosted: Apr 14th, '10, 10:59 
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well, i'm hoping not to have to cover the fishpond at all as far as sun keeping out goes. i've had enough ponds that have no problems to think it may be possible. its just keeping unwanted guests out that bothers me

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PostPosted: Apr 19th, '10, 13:53 
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not much done this weekend, but at least the GB plumbing is finished, and only the one through tank fitting to finish off (after waterproofing).
waterfall pond also waterproofed (gripset51), and the rest will be done next weekend assuming the rain holds off.

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PostPosted: Apr 19th, '10, 17:59 
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nice stuccco job :thumbleft: :thumbright:

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PostPosted: Sep 28th, '10, 11:18 
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Hey Orcy any updates?


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