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 Post subject: Re: JimV's IBC starter
PostPosted: Mar 21st, '15, 06:53 
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JimV wrote:
And TCLynx recommends getting potassium bicarbonate from a homebrew store. I'll check later this morning when they open.

http://community.theaquaponicsource.com ... -potassium


    Brew Ferment Distill (Oak Park) $2.50/oz. This is my go-to brewing store, great service.
    Original Homebrew Outlet (near North Highlands) has "potassium carbonate", ~$2/2 oz. Beware! Bad reviews
    Brewmeister (West Sac, Folsom, and Roseville) $4.95/5 oz bottle. (I called the WSac store, never been to any of these, but looking like that will change...)

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 Post subject: Re: JimV's IBC starter
PostPosted: Mar 23rd, '15, 12:10 
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I made a fair bit of progress this weekend, although not as much as I'd hoped. As usual...

My FT is covered, pet- and child-safe! But I got in a bit too much of a hurry when I was designing the cover, and ended up running out of structural lumber (redwood 2"x4"), so I need to get another piece of lumber to finish it. Also need to install the hinges for the fish feed/water access door. I also need to get some paint to help weather-proof the cover. Photos when it's done.

My pump arrived today -- A Laguna 960 (4000 L/hr). Far larger than I need right now, but it should be just about right when I get the south yard cleared and set up the system there. I hope to be able to accomodate 8-12 media beds, along with a larger FT.

I got one bag of media rinsed yesterday, and loaded the bottom of my one-and-only GB. Did some drain testing this morning, and learned a few things:

#1 My stand pipe was too high, which was intentional. Stand pipe has been trimmed to approximately the correct height today.

#2 My media guard FLOATS?!? On the next test, I will have a few rocks or other various weights close to hand so I can see how much buoyancy I need to overcome. Maybe I can just stick some weight in my atrium grate?

#3 Holes in the media guard are large enough to allow some of the smaller LECA to pass through. I'll sew up a sleeve of nylon window screen around the media guard before the next test.

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 Post subject: Re: JimV's IBC starter
PostPosted: Mar 24th, '15, 13:04 
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Bought what I hope will be the final parts needed to get my system cycling:
- Another piece of redwood to finish framing the FT cover.
- Fiberglass window screening, to wrap my media guard and exclude small media.
- 1.5 inch PVC and fittings for water distribution.
- Fittings to connect the pump to the PVC.

But shopping for parts is pretty much the only thing I got done today. :(
Well, at least I'll be able to get straight to work when my wife and I get home tomorrow! (Good thing, because our eldest is having us over for dinner on the following night.)

Attachment:
File comment: 1.5-inch (40 mm?) water distribution fittings.
image.jpg
image.jpg [ 141.81 KiB | Viewed 2271 times ]


Attachment:
File comment: Fittings to connect 1.25-inch barbed to 1.5-inch slip. Seems a bit fiddly.
image.jpg
image.jpg [ 113.56 KiB | Viewed 2271 times ]

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 Post subject: Re: JimV's IBC starter
PostPosted: Mar 26th, '15, 00:57 
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TCLynxhas some excellent advice for using swimming pool diversion valves and actuators with indexing valves, including selection of the valve and motor/actuator.

In this setup the pump runs continuously, with the diverter valve cycling between two separate indexing valves. This saves wear the pump (no starting/stopping), and allows for twice as many GB's.

I won't be using this trick on my starter system, but I wanted to keep all my notes together in this thread.

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 Post subject: Re: JimV's IBC starter
PostPosted: Mar 26th, '15, 06:59 
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Possible irrigation supplier in Perkins (very close to where I found IBC's). They are open to the public, according to the somewhat hesitant person who answered when I called a few minutes ago.

Sacramento Windustrial
5800 Warehouse Way
Sacramento, CA 95826
+1 (916) 381-4661
Mon-Fri 06:30 AM - 16:30
http://www.sac-windustrial.com/index.ph ... 4&Itemid=5

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 Post subject: Re: JimV's IBC starter
PostPosted: Mar 29th, '15, 10:05 
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First plumbing test this evening!
Attachment:
File comment: Beginning of full plumbing test. All fittings are friction-fit at this time.
image.jpg
image.jpg [ 103.44 KiB | Viewed 2214 times ]

Unfortunately it was a bit of a failure. But hey, that's why we test, eh?

This temporary system has the growbed on sawhorses. A few days ago, I had to move one of them away fom the edge of the IBC. And I forgot to move it back when I was done. So when the GB was full of water, the plastic pallet at the base of the IBC deformed significantly. Not enough for a catastrophic failure, but I got out of the way (just in case) and emptied the GB pretty damn quick!

Sunset is upon us here, and I've been at this all day, so it's time to call it quits for the night. Tomorrow morning I should be able to re-position the sawhorse, run another plumbing test, and see how much Hydrocorn media I can wash.

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 Post subject: Re: JimV's IBC starter
PostPosted: Mar 29th, '15, 11:01 
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While setting up my system my wife was joking that I had a second job. It's good to see the progress JimV. If your using a bell siphon make sure you get it working right before you add your media.

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 Post subject: Re: JimV's IBC starter
PostPosted: Mar 29th, '15, 11:49 
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Max47 wrote:
While setting up my system my wife was joking that I had a second job. It's good to see the progress JimV. If your using a bell siphon make sure you get it working right before you add your media.


:laughing3: ha ha ha, yep! My wife keeps telling me it seems like I'm having to work pretty hard at this, to which I replied that it's not work if I'm having a good time! :D

My bell siphon is working pretty well, but I think it could drain faster. (Hard to be sure right now. Wthout media I have ~2.5x more water that I will once the GB is loaded.) I think the limiting factor is my 3/4" drain tube. I have a decent media guard in place, and I got an assortment of Uniseals from TCLynx, so I may yank out the bulkhead fitting and install a 1" drain. That should just about double the drain rate.

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 Post subject: Re: JimV's IBC starter
PostPosted: Mar 30th, '15, 02:54 
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Priming and painting the FT cover this morning, and rinsing media this afternoon.
Attachment:
File comment: Priming the FT cover
image.jpg
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 Post subject: Re: JimV's IBC starter
PostPosted: Mar 30th, '15, 23:36 
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IceMan recommends adding white pansies to the GB to cut down on caterpillars.
http://www.backyardaquaponics.com/forum ... 73#p500073

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 Post subject: Re: JimV's IBC starter
PostPosted: Apr 5th, '15, 12:45 
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I got about half of my media washed today, but I don't think I'll be getting a whole lot more done tomorrow. ;)

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 Post subject: Re: JimV's IBC starter
PostPosted: Apr 5th, '15, 22:22 
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Jim - have you cycled yet? I'm in winters every tuesday/thursday and have plenty of water and/or a sponge filter i could throw your way to speed things up.

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 Post subject: Re: JimV's IBC starter
PostPosted: Apr 5th, '15, 23:20 
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Not yet. Thanks for the offer! I'm going to get some water from AquaNate, but we have also been talking about "cross pollinating" our systems for increased bacterial diversity.

Thursdays in Winters could definitely be a possibility -- It's pretty easy to talk my wife into heading out there after work for dinner at Ficelle.

I've still got to rinse 5-6 more bags of Hydrocorn and finish loading up my first GB. Hopefully I can get a bag or two done every evening this week.

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 Post subject: Re: JimV's IBC starter
PostPosted: Apr 7th, '15, 12:06 
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I got another 3 bags of Hydrocorn rinsed after work today. (Hooray for longer days!) I have another bag spread out on AquaNate's gravel rack, hoping that we'll get enough rain in this next storm to rinse it off.

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 Post subject: Re: JimV's IBC starter
PostPosted: Apr 7th, '15, 12:09 
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Oh, I just noticed that @smatthew is Scott's Pride Farm! Great work on the water testing posts.

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