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Re: Bucket Ponics!

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  • hemnancy
    I m new at aquaponics also, but I was considering a system kind of like yours and was told the roots of the plants would fill the medium then grow through the
    Message 1 of 20 , Nov 1, 2008
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      I'm new at aquaponics also, but I was considering a system kind of
      like yours and was told the roots of the plants would fill the medium
      then grow through the basket down into the bucket so soon there
      wouldn't be much room for the fish in the bottom. I'm changing to a
      bucket sitting on top of a 10 gal. aquarium to use for the fish and a
      small pump to fill the bucket, then possibly a Bell siphon in the
      bottom of the bucket to drain it. I've been experimenting with a
      larger system with a hole in the side of the GB and a Loop siphon and
      I'm having a hard time getting it to cycle, I have to submerge the
      end of the siphon tubing in water before it will build up enough flow
      to drain faster than the pump, and when the water level gets to the
      bottom drain the siphon will then keep up with the pump instead of
      cutting off so the GB can start to fill again. I'm presently trying
      to think of how I could use some kind of float for a flapper valve to
      shut off the drain pipe briefly and cut off the siphoning. Any
      ideas? Any insights into Loop siphons?

      Good luck with your system. Do you have a second bucket you could
      use for a separate fish tank? I'm trying starting some seeds in
      Hydroton and the small seeds seem to fall too far into it and have
      trouble reaching the surface, but beans and cucumbers are coming up.
      The perlite might be better for small seeds but does it try to float
      out of the basket or strainer?

      Nancy

      --- In barrelponics@yahoogroups.com, Tom & Ella <pate9628@...> wrote:
      >
      >  
      >  
      > Chris, you need to pump water up and over top and through the
      peralite to have an effective biofilter.
      >  
      > TomPate
      >
      > --- On Fri, 10/31/08, Chris Johnson <crjm28@...> wrote:
      >
      > From: Chris Johnson <crjm28@...>
      > Subject: Re: [barrelponics] Re: Bucket Ponics!
      > To: barrelponics@yahoogroups.com
      > Date: Friday, October 31, 2008, 4:17 PM
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >
      > my concerns are my questions.  The water flows up, but doesn't
      spread over the top.  I figure it is spreading out at the surface,
      and there is probably 2 inches of water going up the colander, and
      water is spreading out there, but I don't know if that is sufficient
      to create a sufficient biofilter, or if there is enough free movent
      of water down there to allow water to flow over everything.  At the
      same time, I think about the size of my bio bag and the pad used to
      catch and hold bacteria (which is much smaller than the area of
      perlite that is submerged, but inexperience makes me feel insecure.
      >
      > I'm about to leave to get a bigger air pump and buy an airstone
      which will be mounted directly under the colander.  Maybe that will
      be all I need?  If no one else here knows, I guess I'll have to take
      a chance. 
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >
      > From: Greg and April <gregandapril@ earthlink. net>
      > To: barrelponics@ yahoogroups. com
      > Sent: Friday, October 31, 2008 3:22:14 PM
      > Subject: Re: [barrelponics] Re: Bucket Ponics!
      >
      >
      >
      >
      > I see you voicing a concern, but do not see a question being asked.
      >  
      > Greg H.
      >  
      >
      > ----- Original Message -----
      > From: Chris Johnson
      > To: barrelponics@ yahoogroups. com
      > Sent: Friday, October 31, 2008 12:16
      > Subject: Re: [barrelponics] Re: Bucket Ponics!
      >
      >
      >
      > second paragraph of original post
      >
      >
      >  
      >
    • Travis
      Now you know why I use a siphon where I do (to fill the counterweight). Unless you can overcome the amount of water needed to fill the pipe above and beyond
      Message 2 of 20 , Nov 1, 2008
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        Now you know why I use a siphon where I do (to fill the counterweight).
        Unless you can overcome the amount of water needed to fill the pipe
        above and beyond the air trying to come back up the pipe the siphon will
        not initiate. Siphons are not a problem as long as you have a pump large
        enough to do the job. The setup you are describing sounds complicated
        with all these siphons needing to do their ob or the system has
        problems. You also run into the problem of not being able to adjust the
        cycle times by very much. Why not just build a flood tank as in the
        barrel-ponics manual? You would already be up and running in no time. I
        have one scaled down to use a 5 gallon bucket as a flood tank and it
        works beautifully. I also have one made from ferrocement that floods
        over 35o gallons of water per cycle and it has worked beautifully for
        over 2 years now. The flood valve solves your problems with piping
        sizing you are having with the loop siphon as it cuts off the water to
        the counterweight and allows it to close the valve once drained. There
        has been several people do the loop siphon thing and from the emails I
        have gotten they are finicky. Not really a way to do aquaponics if you
        ask me. You want reliability throughout. You are correct that getting
        to the fish is very important and should be a design consideration in
        any aquaponics project.

        Trav.


        --- In barrelponics@yahoogroups.com, "hemnancy" <hemnancy@...> wrote:
        >
        > I'm new at aquaponics also, but I was considering a system kind of
        > like yours and was told the roots of the plants would fill the medium
        > then grow through the basket down into the bucket so soon there
        > wouldn't be much room for the fish in the bottom. I'm changing to a
        > bucket sitting on top of a 10 gal. aquarium to use for the fish and a
        > small pump to fill the bucket, then possibly a Bell siphon in the
        > bottom of the bucket to drain it. I've been experimenting with a
        > larger system with a hole in the side of the GB and a Loop siphon and
        > I'm having a hard time getting it to cycle, I have to submerge the
        > end of the siphon tubing in water before it will build up enough flow
        > to drain faster than the pump, and when the water level gets to the
        > bottom drain the siphon will then keep up with the pump instead of
        > cutting off so the GB can start to fill again. I'm presently trying
        > to think of how I could use some kind of float for a flapper valve to
        > shut off the drain pipe briefly and cut off the siphoning. Any
        > ideas? Any insights into Loop siphons?
        >
        > Good luck with your system. Do you have a second bucket you could
        > use for a separate fish tank? I'm trying starting some seeds in
        > Hydroton and the small seeds seem to fall too far into it and have
        > trouble reaching the surface, but beans and cucumbers are coming up.
        > The perlite might be better for small seeds but does it try to float
        > out of the basket or strainer?
        >
        > Nancy
        >
        > --- In barrelponics@yahoogroups.com, Tom & Ella pate9628@ wrote:
        > >
        > >
        > >
        > > Chris, you need to pump water up and over top and through the
        > peralite to have an effective biofilter.
        > >
        > > TomPate
        > >
        > > --- On Fri, 10/31/08, Chris Johnson crjm28@ wrote:
        > >
        > > From: Chris Johnson crjm28@
        > > Subject: Re: [barrelponics] Re: Bucket Ponics!
        > > To: barrelponics@yahoogroups.com
        > > Date: Friday, October 31, 2008, 4:17 PM
        > >
        > >
        > >
        > >
        > >
        > >
        > >
        > >
        > > my concerns are my questions. The water flows up, but doesn't
        > spread over the top. I figure it is spreading out at the surface,
        > and there is probably 2 inches of water going up the colander, and
        > water is spreading out there, but I don't know if that is sufficient
        > to create a sufficient biofilter, or if there is enough free movent
        > of water down there to allow water to flow over everything. At the
        > same time, I think about the size of my bio bag and the pad used to
        > catch and hold bacteria (which is much smaller than the area of
        > perlite that is submerged, but inexperience makes me feel insecure.
        > >
        > > I'm about to leave to get a bigger air pump and buy an airstone
        > which will be mounted directly under the colander. Maybe that will
        > be all I need? If no one else here knows, I guess I'll have to take
        > a chance.
        > >
        > >
        > >
        > >
        > >
        > > From: Greg and April <gregandapril@ earthlink. net>
        > > To: barrelponics@ yahoogroups. com
        > > Sent: Friday, October 31, 2008 3:22:14 PM
        > > Subject: Re: [barrelponics] Re: Bucket Ponics!
        > >
        > >
        > >
        > >
        > > I see you voicing a concern, but do not see a question being asked.
        > >
        > > Greg H.
        > >
        > >
        > > ----- Original Message -----
        > > From: Chris Johnson
        > > To: barrelponics@ yahoogroups. com
        > > Sent: Friday, October 31, 2008 12:16
        > > Subject: Re: [barrelponics] Re: Bucket Ponics!
        > >
        > >
        > >
        > > second paragraph of original post
        > >
        > >
        > >
        > >
        >
      • Chris Johnson
        I m new at aquaponics also, but I was considering a system kind of like yours and was told the roots of the plants would fill the medium then grow through the
        Message 3 of 20 , Nov 1, 2008
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          I'm new at aquaponics also, but I was considering a system kind of
          like yours and was told the roots of the plants would fill the medium
          then grow through the basket down into the bucket so soon there
          wouldn't be much room for the fish in the bottom.

          >> Yes the roots will definetly fill the bucket.  That is not a problem for me, I'm anticipating that, and am looking forward to it!  For example.

          I plan on cutting the bottom out of this bucket (soon I hope) and stack it on top of another bucket.  This will give me room for more water and more fish.  More water for more fish, and more water for more water pressure to help out the water flow.  I'm also gonna add an air stone a few inches under the colander to provide extra aeration and saturate the perlite with oxygen.  I believe that will give the bacteria plenty of oxygen, and should (in theory) provide circulation in the substrate

          I'm gonna power my system with feeder guppies, and mostly females.  The feeder guppies will help stock up the tank so I don't have to buy more guppies.  The roots will be shelter for the fry as well!  Pretty smart hu?

          I'm changing to a
          bucket sitting on top of a 10 gal. aquarium to use for the fish and a
          small pump to fill the bucket, then possibly a Bell siphon in the
          bottom of the bucket to drain it. I've been experimenting with a
          larger system with a hole in the side of the GB and a Loop siphon and
          I'm having a hard time getting it to cycle, I have to submerge the
          end of the siphon tubing in water before it will build up enough flow
          to drain faster than the pump, and when the water level gets to the
          bottom drain the siphon will then keep up with the pump instead of
          cutting off so the GB can start to fill again. I'm presently trying
          to think of how I could use some kind of float for a flapper valve to
          shut off the drain pipe briefly and cut off the siphoning. Any
          ideas? Any insights into Loop siphons

          >> I'm gonna fishless cycle the system first so I can fully stock the bucket immediately and not have to worry about quarantining the fish.I wish I could be more help to you, but I chose this method because deep water cultures are simplistic and very effective.  


          Good luck with your system. Do you have a second bucket you could
          use for a separate fish tank? I'm trying starting some seeds in
          Hydroton and the small seeds seem to fall too far into it and have
          trouble reaching the surface, but beans and cucumbers are coming up.
          The perlite might be better for small seeds but does it try to float
          out of the basket or strainer?

          >>why not start your seeds in a clear sandwhich bag with a damp paper towel or newspaper under them so you can watch the seeds grow to the size you want?

          Chris

          PS.  I did a modification, and am about to upload the pic to my folder.  Hopefully it won't be very long till its approved.


        • Chris Johnson
          I agree with you 99.9%, but I have a love for DWC, and I need to start a project now. Right now I m working with what I have. I had just about everything I
          Message 4 of 20 , Nov 1, 2008
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            I agree with you 99.9%, but I have a love for DWC, and I need to start a project now.  Right now I'm working with what I have.  I had just about everything I need to build one, with the exception of more powerful air pump, and a few misc parts.

             I want to build an ebb and flow system like yours, but as of now it I would be waiting months before I have a working system assembled.  My grow lights are mounted.  I would need to buy new fixtures, bulbs, materials to build the frame, ect ect ect.  For now I'm collecting what I need and the fact that I can't find the parts fast enough is getting on my nerves.  Hehe.  Such is life! :)


            From: Travis <barrelponics@...>
            To: barrelponics@yahoogroups.com
            Sent: Saturday, November 1, 2008 9:06:41 AM
            Subject: [barrelponics] Re: Bucket Ponics!


            Now you know why I use a siphon where I do (to fill the counterweight) .
            Unless you can overcome the amount of water needed to fill the pipe
            above and beyond the air trying to come back up the pipe the siphon will
            not initiate. Siphons are not a problem as long as you have a pump large
            enough to do the job. The setup you are describing sounds complicated
            with all these siphons needing to do their ob or the system has
            problems. You also run into the problem of not being able to adjust the
            cycle times by very much. Why not just build a flood tank as in the
            barrel-ponics manual? You would already be up and running in no time. I
            have one scaled down to use a 5 gallon bucket as a flood tank and it
            works beautifully. I also have one made from ferrocement that floods
            over 35o gallons of water per cycle and it has worked beautifully for
            over 2 years now. The flood valve solves your problems with piping
            sizing you are having with the loop siphon as it cuts off the water to
            the counterweight and allows it to close the valve once drained. There
            has been several people do the loop siphon thing and from the emails I
            have gotten they are finicky. Not really a way to do aquaponics if you
            ask me. You want reliability throughout. You are correct that getting
            to the fish is very important and should be a design consideration in
            any aquaponics project.

            Trav.

            --- In barrelponics@ yahoogroups. com, "hemnancy" <hemnancy@.. .> wrote:
            >
            > I'm new at aquaponics also, but I was considering a system kind of
            > like yours and was told the roots of the plants would fill the medium
            > then grow through the basket down into the bucket so soon there
            > wouldn't be much room for the fish in the bottom. I'm changing to a
            > bucket sitting on top of a 10 gal. aquarium to use for the fish and a
            > small pump to fill the bucket, then possibly a Bell siphon in the
            > bottom of the bucket to drain it. I've been experimenting with a
            > larger system with a hole in the side of the GB and a Loop siphon and
            > I'm having a hard time getting it to cycle, I have to submerge the
            > end of the siphon tubing in water before it will build up enough flow
            > to drain faster than the pump, and when the water level gets to the
            > bottom drain the siphon will then keep up with the pump instead of
            > cutting off so the GB can start to fill again. I'm presently trying
            > to think of how I could use some kind of float for a flapper valve to
            > shut off the drain pipe briefly and cut off the siphoning. Any
            > ideas? Any insights into Loop siphons?
            >
            > Good luck with your system. Do you have a second bucket you could
            > use for a separate fish tank? I'm trying starting some seeds in
            > Hydroton and the small seeds seem to fall too far into it and have
            > trouble reaching the surface, but beans and cucumbers are coming up.
            > The perlite might be better for small seeds but does it try to float
            > out of the basket or strainer?
            >
            > Nancy
            >
            > --- In barrelponics@ yahoogroups. com, Tom & Ella pate9628@ wrote:
            > >
            > >
            > >
            > > Chris, you need to pump water up and over top and through the
            > peralite to have an effective biofilter.
            > >
            > > TomPate
            > >
            > > --- On Fri, 10/31/08, Chris Johnson crjm28@ wrote:
            > >
            > > From: Chris Johnson crjm28@
            > > Subject: Re: [barrelponics] Re: Bucket Ponics!
            > > To: barrelponics@ yahoogroups. com
            > > Date: Friday, October 31, 2008, 4:17 PM
            > >
            > >
            > >
            > >
            > >
            > >
            > >
            > >
            > > my concerns are my questions. The water flows up, but doesn't
            > spread over the top. I figure it is spreading out at the surface,
            > and there is probably 2 inches of water going up the colander, and
            > water is spreading out there, but I don't know if that is sufficient
            > to create a sufficient biofilter, or if there is enough free movent
            > of water down there to allow water to flow over everything. At the
            > same time, I think about the size of my bio bag and the pad used to
            > catch and hold bacteria (which is much smaller than the area of
            > perlite that is submerged, but inexperience makes me feel insecure.
            > >
            > > I'm about to leave to get a bigger air pump and buy an airstone
            > which will be mounted directly under the colander. Maybe that will
            > be all I need? If no one else here knows, I guess I'll have to take
            > a chance.
            > >
            > >
            > >
            > >
            > >
            > > From: Greg and April <gregandapril@ earthlink. net>
            > > To: barrelponics@ yahoogroups. com
            > > Sent: Friday, October 31, 2008 3:22:14 PM
            > > Subject: Re: [barrelponics] Re: Bucket Ponics!
            > >
            > >
            > >
            > >
            > > I see you voicing a concern, but do not see a question being asked.
            > >
            > > Greg H.
            > >
            > >
            > > ----- Original Message -----
            > > From: Chris Johnson
            > > To: barrelponics@ yahoogroups. com
            > > Sent: Friday, October 31, 2008 12:16
            > > Subject: Re: [barrelponics] Re: Bucket Ponics!
            > >
            > >
            > >
            > > second paragraph of original post
            > >
            > >
            > >
            > >
            >


          • hemnancy
            ... towel or newspaper under them so you can watch the seeds grow to the size you want? ... folder. Hopefully it won t be very long till its approved. ...
            Message 5 of 20 , Nov 2, 2008
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              --- In barrelponics@yahoogroups.com, Chris Johnson <crjm28@...> wrote:
              > >>why not start your seeds in a clear sandwhich bag with a damp paper
              towel or newspaper under them so you can watch the seeds grow to the
              size you want?
              > Chris
              > PS. I did a modification, and am about to upload the pic to my
              folder. Hopefully it won't be very long till its approved.
              >

              Chris- I'm starting them in Hydroton as an experiment, to see what
              Hydroton is like and how well it starts seeds. I'm pleased with the
              sprouting of the beans and cucumbers but think I should start the
              lettuce and tomatoes in the plastic bags with paper towels. I like
              that I can just stick the plastic mesh basket into the gravel and not
              disturb the roots of the plants at all. I think it should make it
              easier to remove them when they are done producing, too.

              Nancy
            • hemnancy
              Travis- That certainly makes sense. I ve had a difficult time with the loop siphons. I don t know where to put a flood tank though since I m using a corner
              Message 6 of 20 , Nov 2, 2008
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                Travis- That certainly makes sense. I've had a difficult time with
                the loop siphons. I don't know where to put a flood tank though
                since I'm using a corner of my dining room next to a sliding glass
                door to use the available daylight. It would have to be mounted over
                the FT which is a 40 gal. stock tank, so it would be difficult. I'll
                see what happens with trying to adjust the loop siphon....
                Nancy

                --- In barrelponics@yahoogroups.com, "Travis" <barrelponics@...>
                wrote:
                >
                >
                > Now you know why I use a siphon where I do (to fill the
                counterweight).
                > Unless you can overcome the amount of water needed to fill the pipe
                > above and beyond the air trying to come back up the pipe the siphon
                will
                > not initiate. Siphons are not a problem as long as you have a pump
                large
                > enough to do the job. The setup you are describing sounds
                complicated
                > with all these siphons needing to do their ob or the system has
                > problems. You also run into the problem of not being able to
                adjust the
                > cycle times by very much. Why not just build a flood tank as in the
                > barrel-ponics manual? You would already be up and running in no
                time. I
                > have one scaled down to use a 5 gallon bucket as a flood tank and it
                > works beautifully. I also have one made from ferrocement that
                floods
                > over 35o gallons of water per cycle and it has worked beautifully
                for
                > over 2 years now. The flood valve solves your problems with piping
                > sizing you are having with the loop siphon as it cuts off the water
                to
                > the counterweight and allows it to close the valve once drained.
                There
                > has been several people do the loop siphon thing and from the
                emails I
                > have gotten they are finicky. Not really a way to do aquaponics if
                you
                > ask me. You want reliability throughout. You are correct that
                getting
                > to the fish is very important and should be a design consideration
                in
                > any aquaponics project.
                >
                > Trav.
                >
                >
                > --- In barrelponics@yahoogroups.com, "hemnancy" <hemnancy@> wrote:
                > >
                > > I'm new at aquaponics also, but I was considering a system kind of
                > > like yours and was told the roots of the plants would fill the
                medium
                > > then grow through the basket down into the bucket so soon there
                > > wouldn't be much room for the fish in the bottom. I'm changing to
                a
                > > bucket sitting on top of a 10 gal. aquarium to use for the fish
                and a
                > > small pump to fill the bucket, then possibly a Bell siphon in the
                > > bottom of the bucket to drain it. I've been experimenting with a
                > > larger system with a hole in the side of the GB and a Loop siphon
                and
                > > I'm having a hard time getting it to cycle, I have to submerge the
                > > end of the siphon tubing in water before it will build up enough
                flow
                > > to drain faster than the pump, and when the water level gets to
                the
                > > bottom drain the siphon will then keep up with the pump instead of
                > > cutting off so the GB can start to fill again. I'm presently
                trying
                > > to think of how I could use some kind of float for a flapper
                valve to
                > > shut off the drain pipe briefly and cut off the siphoning. Any
                > > ideas? Any insights into Loop siphons?
                > >
                > > Good luck with your system. Do you have a second bucket you could
                > > use for a separate fish tank? I'm trying starting some seeds in
                > > Hydroton and the small seeds seem to fall too far into it and have
                > > trouble reaching the surface, but beans and cucumbers are coming
                up.
                > > The perlite might be better for small seeds but does it try to
                float
                > > out of the basket or strainer?
                > >
                > > Nancy
                > >
                > > --- In barrelponics@yahoogroups.com, Tom & Ella pate9628@ wrote:
                > > >
                > > >
                > > >
                > > > Chris, you need to pump water up and over top and through the
                > > peralite to have an effective biofilter.
                > > >
                > > > TomPate
                > > >
                > > > --- On Fri, 10/31/08, Chris Johnson crjm28@ wrote:
                > > >
                > > > From: Chris Johnson crjm28@
                > > > Subject: Re: [barrelponics] Re: Bucket Ponics!
                > > > To: barrelponics@yahoogroups.com
                > > > Date: Friday, October 31, 2008, 4:17 PM
                > > >
                > > >
                > > >
                > > >
                > > >
                > > >
                > > >
                > > >
                > > > my concerns are my questions. The water flows up, but doesn't
                > > spread over the top. I figure it is spreading out at the surface,
                > > and there is probably 2 inches of water going up the colander, and
                > > water is spreading out there, but I don't know if that is
                sufficient
                > > to create a sufficient biofilter, or if there is enough free
                movent
                > > of water down there to allow water to flow over everything. At
                the
                > > same time, I think about the size of my bio bag and the pad used
                to
                > > catch and hold bacteria (which is much smaller than the area of
                > > perlite that is submerged, but inexperience makes me feel
                insecure.
                > > >
                > > > I'm about to leave to get a bigger air pump and buy an airstone
                > > which will be mounted directly under the colander. Maybe that
                will
                > > be all I need? If no one else here knows, I guess I'll have to
                take
                > > a chance.
                > > >
                > > >
                > > >
                > > >
                > > >
                > > > From: Greg and April <gregandapril@ earthlink. net>
                > > > To: barrelponics@ yahoogroups. com
                > > > Sent: Friday, October 31, 2008 3:22:14 PM
                > > > Subject: Re: [barrelponics] Re: Bucket Ponics!
                > > >
                > > >
                > > >
                > > >
                > > > I see you voicing a concern, but do not see a question being
                asked.
                > > >
                > > > Greg H.
                > > >
                > > >
                > > > ----- Original Message -----
                > > > From: Chris Johnson
                > > > To: barrelponics@ yahoogroups. com
                > > > Sent: Friday, October 31, 2008 12:16
                > > > Subject: Re: [barrelponics] Re: Bucket Ponics!
                > > >
                > > >
                > > >
                > > > second paragraph of original post
                > > >
                > > >
                > > >
                > > >
                > >
                >
              • Chris Johnson
                I had a decent flow going on with the loop, but I broke it.... long story. I have just an air stone bubbling under the colander. I believe that will do the
                Message 7 of 20 , Nov 2, 2008
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                  I had a decent flow going on with the loop, but I broke it.... long story.  I have just an air stone bubbling under the colander.  I believe that will do the job on its own.  Air bubbles are coming out of the sides of the colander so the question now is will it cycle?  In theory it should.  The air is displacing water and creating a current. There is plenty of o2 for the bacteria, and since natures likes to keep things in balance, any ammonia and nitrites towards the bottom of the bucket should disperse upwards.  That is if I remember my high school chemistry correctly.

                  I have an off the topic question.  Since you don't do water changes in aquaponics systems (unless necessary) do salts tend to build up?



                  From: hemnancy <hemnancy@...>
                  To: barrelponics@yahoogroups.com
                  Sent: Sunday, November 2, 2008 7:06:59 AM
                  Subject: [barrelponics] Re: Bucket Ponics!

                  Travis- That certainly makes sense. I've had a difficult time with
                  the loop siphons. I don't know where to put a flood tank though
                  since I'm using a corner of my dining room next to a sliding glass
                  door to use the available daylight. It would have to be mounted over
                  the FT which is a 40 gal. stock tank, so it would be difficult. I'll
                  see what happens with trying to adjust the loop siphon....
                  Nancy

                  --- In barrelponics@ yahoogroups. com, "Travis" <barrelponics@ ...>
                  wrote:

                  >
                  >
                  > Now you know why I use a siphon where I do (to fill the
                  counterweight) .
                  > Unless you can overcome the amount of water needed to fill the pipe
                  > above and beyond the air trying to come back up the pipe the siphon
                  will
                  > not initiate. Siphons are not a problem as long as you have a pump
                  large
                  > enough to do the job. The setup you are describing sounds
                  complicated
                  > with all these siphons needing to do their ob or the system has
                  > problems. You also run into the problem of not being able to
                  adjust the
                  > cycle times by very much. Why not just build a flood tank as in the
                  > barrel-ponics manual? You would already be up and running in no
                  time. I
                  > have one scaled down to use a 5 gallon bucket as a flood tank and it
                  > works beautifully. I also have one made from ferrocement that
                  floods
                  > over 35o gallons of water per cycle and it has worked beautifully
                  for
                  > over 2 years now. The flood valve solves your problems with piping
                  > sizing you are having with the loop siphon as it cuts off the water
                  to
                  > the counterweight and allows it to close the valve once drained.
                  There
                  > has been several people do the loop siphon thing and from the
                  emails I
                  > have gotten they are finicky. Not really a way to do aquaponics if
                  you
                  > ask me. You want reliability throughout. You are correct that
                  getting
                  > to the fish is very important and should be a design consideration
                  in
                  > any aquaponics project.
                  >
                  > Trav.
                  >
                  >
                  > --- In barrelponics@ yahoogroups. com, "hemnancy" <hemnancy@> wrote:
                  > >
                  > > I'm new at aquaponics also, but I was considering a system kind of
                  > > like yours and was told the roots of the plants would fill the
                  medium
                  > > then grow through the basket down into the bucket so soon there
                  > > wouldn't be much room for the fish in the bottom. I'm changing to
                  a
                  > > bucket sitting on top of a 10 gal. aquarium to use for the fish
                  and a
                  > > small pump to fill the bucket, then possibly a Bell siphon in the
                  > > bottom of the bucket to drain it. I've been experimenting with a
                  > > larger system with a hole in the side of the GB and a Loop siphon
                  and
                  > > I'm having a hard time getting it to cycle, I have to submerge the
                  > > end of the siphon tubing in water before it will build up enough
                  flow
                  > > to drain faster than the pump, and when the water level gets to
                  the
                  > > bottom drain the siphon will then keep up with the pump instead of
                  > > cutting off so the GB can start to fill again. I'm presently
                  trying
                  > > to think of how I could use some kind of float for a flapper
                  valve to
                  > > shut off the drain pipe briefly and cut off the siphoning. Any
                  > > ideas? Any insights into Loop siphons?
                  > >
                  > > Good luck with your system. Do you have a second bucket you could
                  > > use for a separate fish tank? I'm trying starting some seeds in
                  > > Hydroton and the small seeds seem to fall too far into it and have
                  > > trouble reaching the surface, but beans and cucumbers are coming
                  up.
                  > > The perlite might be better for small seeds but does it try to
                  float
                  > > out of the basket or strainer?
                  > >
                  > > Nancy
                  > >
                  > > --- In barrelponics@ yahoogroups. com, Tom & Ella pate9628@ wrote:
                  > > >
                  > > >
                  > > >
                  > > > Chris, you need to pump water up and over top and through the
                  > > peralite to have an effective biofilter.
                  > > >
                  > > > TomPate
                  > > >
                  > > > --- On Fri, 10/31/08, Chris Johnson crjm28@ wrote:
                  > > >
                  > > > From: Chris Johnson crjm28@
                  > > > Subject: Re: [barrelponics] Re: Bucket Ponics!
                  > > > To: barrelponics@ yahoogroups. com
                  > > > Date: Friday, October 31, 2008, 4:17 PM
                  > > >
                  > > >
                  > > >
                  > > >
                  > > >
                  > > >
                  > > >
                  > > >
                  > > > my concerns are my questions. The water flows up, but doesn't
                  > > spread over the top. I figure it is spreading out at the surface,
                  > > and there is probably 2 inches of water going up the colander, and
                  > > water is spreading out there, but I don't know if that is
                  sufficient
                  > > to create a sufficient biofilter, or if there is enough free
                  movent
                  > > of water down there to allow water to flow over everything. At
                  the
                  > > same time, I think about the size of my bio bag and the pad used
                  to
                  > > catch and hold bacteria (which is much smaller than the area of
                  > > perlite that is submerged, but inexperience makes me feel
                  insecure.
                  > > >
                  > > > I'm about to leave to get a bigger air pump and buy an airstone
                  > > which will be mounted directly under the colander. Maybe that
                  will
                  > > be all I need? If no one else here knows, I guess I'll have to
                  take
                  > > a chance.
                  > > >
                  > > >
                  > > >
                  > > >
                  > > >
                  > > > From: Greg and April <gregandapril@ earthlink. net>
                  > > > To: barrelponics@ yahoogroups. com
                  > > > Sent: Friday, October 31, 2008 3:22:14 PM
                  > > > Subject: Re: [barrelponics] Re: Bucket Ponics!
                  > > >
                  > > >
                  > > >
                  > > >
                  > > > I see you voicing a concern, but do not see a question being
                  asked.
                  > > >
                  > > > Greg H.
                  > > >
                  > > >
                  > > > ----- Original Message -----
                  > > > From: Chris Johnson
                  > > > To: barrelponics@ yahoogroups. com
                  > > > Sent: Friday, October 31, 2008 12:16
                  > > > Subject: Re: [barrelponics] Re: Bucket Ponics!
                  > > >
                  > > >
                  > > >
                  > > > second paragraph of original post
                  > > >
                  > > >
                  > > >
                  > > >
                  > >
                  >


                • Travis
                  Hey Nancy, Did you see the photo album titles A Single Barrel System in the photo s area of this group? I have a small system set up next to the door in my
                  Message 8 of 20 , Nov 2, 2008
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                    Hey Nancy,

                    Did you see the photo album titles "A Single Barrel System" in the
                    photo's area of this group? I have a small system set up next to the
                    door in my greenhouse. Takes up very little floor space and is less
                    than 4 ft. tall for the entire system. Mount the flood tank over the
                    fish tank and pipe the water to the growbeds. This way it doesn't take
                    any more floor space. Personally I would put the growbed over the fish
                    tank as well with enough room left to access the fish.

                    Trav.


                    --- In barrelponics@yahoogroups.com, "hemnancy" <hemnancy@...> wrote:
                    >
                    > Travis- That certainly makes sense. I've had a difficult time with
                    > the loop siphons. I don't know where to put a flood tank though
                    > since I'm using a corner of my dining room next to a sliding glass
                    > door to use the available daylight. It would have to be mounted over
                    > the FT which is a 40 gal. stock tank, so it would be difficult. I'll
                    > see what happens with trying to adjust the loop siphon....
                    > Nancy
                    >
                    > --- In barrelponics@yahoogroups.com, "Travis" barrelponics@
                    > wrote:
                    > >
                    > >
                    > > Now you know why I use a siphon where I do (to fill the
                    > counterweight).
                    > > Unless you can overcome the amount of water needed to fill the pipe
                    > > above and beyond the air trying to come back up the pipe the siphon
                    > will
                    > > not initiate. Siphons are not a problem as long as you have a pump
                    > large
                    > > enough to do the job. The setup you are describing sounds
                    > complicated
                    > > with all these siphons needing to do their ob or the system has
                    > > problems. You also run into the problem of not being able to
                    > adjust the
                    > > cycle times by very much. Why not just build a flood tank as in the
                    > > barrel-ponics manual? You would already be up and running in no
                    > time. I
                    > > have one scaled down to use a 5 gallon bucket as a flood tank and it
                    > > works beautifully. I also have one made from ferrocement that
                    > floods
                    > > over 35o gallons of water per cycle and it has worked beautifully
                    > for
                    > > over 2 years now. The flood valve solves your problems with piping
                    > > sizing you are having with the loop siphon as it cuts off the water
                    > to
                    > > the counterweight and allows it to close the valve once drained.
                    > There
                    > > has been several people do the loop siphon thing and from the
                    > emails I
                    > > have gotten they are finicky. Not really a way to do aquaponics if
                    > you
                    > > ask me. You want reliability throughout. You are correct that
                    > getting
                    > > to the fish is very important and should be a design consideration
                    > in
                    > > any aquaponics project.
                    > >
                    > > Trav.
                    > >
                    > >
                    > > --- In barrelponics@yahoogroups.com, "hemnancy" <hemnancy@> wrote:
                    > > >
                    > > > I'm new at aquaponics also, but I was considering a system kind of
                    > > > like yours and was told the roots of the plants would fill the
                    > medium
                    > > > then grow through the basket down into the bucket so soon there
                    > > > wouldn't be much room for the fish in the bottom. I'm changing to
                    > a
                    > > > bucket sitting on top of a 10 gal. aquarium to use for the fish
                    > and a
                    > > > small pump to fill the bucket, then possibly a Bell siphon in the
                    > > > bottom of the bucket to drain it. I've been experimenting with a
                    > > > larger system with a hole in the side of the GB and a Loop siphon
                    > and
                    > > > I'm having a hard time getting it to cycle, I have to submerge the
                    > > > end of the siphon tubing in water before it will build up enough
                    > flow
                    > > > to drain faster than the pump, and when the water level gets to
                    > the
                    > > > bottom drain the siphon will then keep up with the pump instead of
                    > > > cutting off so the GB can start to fill again. I'm presently
                    > trying
                    > > > to think of how I could use some kind of float for a flapper
                    > valve to
                    > > > shut off the drain pipe briefly and cut off the siphoning. Any
                    > > > ideas? Any insights into Loop siphons?
                    > > >
                    > > > Good luck with your system. Do you have a second bucket you could
                    > > > use for a separate fish tank? I'm trying starting some seeds in
                    > > > Hydroton and the small seeds seem to fall too far into it and have
                    > > > trouble reaching the surface, but beans and cucumbers are coming
                    > up.
                    > > > The perlite might be better for small seeds but does it try to
                    > float
                    > > > out of the basket or strainer?
                    > > >
                    > > > Nancy
                    > > >
                    > > > --- In barrelponics@yahoogroups.com, Tom & Ella pate9628@ wrote:
                    > > > >
                    > > > >
                    > > > >
                    > > > > Chris, you need to pump water up and over top and through the
                    > > > peralite to have an effective biofilter.
                    > > > >
                    > > > > TomPate
                    > > > >
                    > > > > --- On Fri, 10/31/08, Chris Johnson crjm28@ wrote:
                    > > > >
                    > > > > From: Chris Johnson crjm28@
                    > > > > Subject: Re: [barrelponics] Re: Bucket Ponics!
                    > > > > To: barrelponics@yahoogroups.com
                    > > > > Date: Friday, October 31, 2008, 4:17 PM
                    > > > >
                    > > > >
                    > > > >
                    > > > >
                    > > > >
                    > > > >
                    > > > >
                    > > > >
                    > > > > my concerns are my questions. The water flows up, but doesn't
                    > > > spread over the top. I figure it is spreading out at the surface,
                    > > > and there is probably 2 inches of water going up the colander, and
                    > > > water is spreading out there, but I don't know if that is
                    > sufficient
                    > > > to create a sufficient biofilter, or if there is enough free
                    > movent
                    > > > of water down there to allow water to flow over everything. At
                    > the
                    > > > same time, I think about the size of my bio bag and the pad used
                    > to
                    > > > catch and hold bacteria (which is much smaller than the area of
                    > > > perlite that is submerged, but inexperience makes me feel
                    > insecure.
                    > > > >
                    > > > > I'm about to leave to get a bigger air pump and buy an airstone
                    > > > which will be mounted directly under the colander. Maybe that
                    > will
                    > > > be all I need? If no one else here knows, I guess I'll have to
                    > take
                    > > > a chance.
                    > > > >
                    > > > >
                    > > > >
                    > > > >
                    > > > >
                    > > > > From: Greg and April <gregandapril@ earthlink. net>
                    > > > > To: barrelponics@ yahoogroups. com
                    > > > > Sent: Friday, October 31, 2008 3:22:14 PM
                    > > > > Subject: Re: [barrelponics] Re: Bucket Ponics!
                    > > > >
                    > > > >
                    > > > >
                    > > > >
                    > > > > I see you voicing a concern, but do not see a question being
                    > asked.
                    > > > >
                    > > > > Greg H.
                    > > > >
                    > > > >
                    > > > > ----- Original Message -----
                    > > > > From: Chris Johnson
                    > > > > To: barrelponics@ yahoogroups. com
                    > > > > Sent: Friday, October 31, 2008 12:16
                    > > > > Subject: Re: [barrelponics] Re: Bucket Ponics!
                    > > > >
                    > > > >
                    > > > >
                    > > > > second paragraph of original post
                    > > > >
                    > > > >
                    > > > >
                    > > > >
                    > > >
                    > >
                    >
                  • hemnancy
                    Travis- Yes, I looked at it. Does the flood tank work on the same principle, the bottle filling with water then triggering the flush, as the regular barrel
                    Message 9 of 20 , Nov 3, 2008
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                      Travis- Yes, I looked at it. Does the flood tank work on the same
                      principle, the bottle filling with water then triggering the flush, as
                      the regular barrel ponics system? The system looks very cool. Is that
                      a hand pump on top, and does it actually pump water up into the flood
                      tank or is there an electric pump?

                      I bought stock tanks before I joined the barrelponics forum. Maybe
                      they are a mistake but I'm working with them for now. Maybe next
                      spring I can try a real barrelponics system outdoors. I guess I would
                      like the growbed on top, fish tank below setup to work if possible. My
                      grandkids visit and my DIL is concerned about the water in my FT. She
                      would like your single barrel system since the FT is concealed and
                      inaccessible to children.

                      I worked on my loop siphon some more today and put an elbow of
                      polyethelene at the bottom of the loop. It actually was flooding and
                      draining so I feel encouraged to put gravel into the grow bed tomorrow
                      and try to start some fishless cycling. My pole bean seedlings are
                      starting to elongate and I am anxious to get some nitrates forming, I
                      hope it won't take too long. Does anyone know a harmless to fish
                      fertilizer I could put into the water to keep the beans green?

                      Nancy

                      --- In barrelponics@yahoogroups.com, "Travis" <barrelponics@...> wrote:
                      >
                      >
                      > Hey Nancy,
                      >
                      > Did you see the photo album titles "A Single Barrel System" in the
                      > photo's area of this group? I have a small system set up next to the
                      > door in my greenhouse. Takes up very little floor space and is less
                      > than 4 ft. tall for the entire system. Mount the flood tank over the
                      > fish tank and pipe the water to the growbeds. This way it doesn't take
                      > any more floor space. Personally I would put the growbed over the
                      fish
                      > tank as well with enough room left to access the fish.
                      >
                      > Trav.
                    • Travis
                      Hey Nancy, I will clip your message below to answer your questions. Does the flood tank work on the same ... Yes. It is the exact same principle but using
                      Message 10 of 20 , Nov 3, 2008
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                        Hey Nancy,

                        I will clip your message below to answer your questions.

                        Does the flood tank work on the same

                        > principle, the bottle filling with water then triggering the flush, as
                        > the regular barrel ponics system?

                        Yes.  It is the exact same principle but using different parts.  This design is very adaptable to what you have and your imagination.  One just needs to understand how it works.

                         

                        The system looks very cool. Is that

                        > a hand pump on top, and does it actually pump water up into the flood
                        > tank or is there an electric pump?

                        It was designed to look like a hand pump for aesthetics. The "handle" is the lever that pulls the valve (made from pvc pieces) open with the counterweight on the end.  Yes it does use an electric pump.


                        >
                        > I bought stock tanks before I joined the barrelponics forum. Maybe
                        > they are a mistake but I'm working with them for now. Maybe next
                        > spring I can try a real barrelponics system outdoors.

                        Stock tanks are no problem and the only reason I use barrels is they are cheap for me.  Once again when you understand the principle you can adapt it to the materials at hand.

                        I guess I would

                        > like the growbed on top, fish tank below setup to work if possible. My
                        > grandkids visit and my DIL is concerned about the water in my FT.

                        That's no problem as long as you design overflows all leading back to the fish tank.  That is what the extension on the tube on the toilet valve is for in the original design.  If the valve doesn't work for any reason the water simply bypasses into the growbeds and then on into the fish tank.  Any design should have safety features built in to ensure the fish stay wet.

                         

                        She

                        > would like your single barrel system since the FT is concealed and
                        > inaccessible to children.

                        Actually the flood tank is on top and would be accessable. The main thing here to keep children from messing with it would be to secure it properly.  I made mine to be moved easily so everything comes apart very easily.

                        Does anyone know a harmless to fish

                        > fertilizer I could put into the water to keep the beans green?

                        Maxi-crop with iron. Great stuff.

                        >
                        > Nancy
                        >
                        > --- In barrelponics@yahoogroups.com, "Travis" barrelponics@ wrote:
                        > >
                        > >
                        > > Hey Nancy,
                        > >
                        > > Did you see the photo album titles "A Single Barrel System" in the
                        > > photo's area of this group? I have a small system set up next to the
                        > > door in my greenhouse. Takes up very little floor space and is less
                        > > than 4 ft. tall for the entire system. Mount the flood tank over the
                        > > fish tank and pipe the water to the growbeds. This way it doesn't take
                        > > any more floor space. Personally I would put the growbed over the
                        > fish
                        > > tank as well with enough room left to access the fish.
                        > >
                        > > Trav.
                        >

                      • Chris
                        I added a picture to my folder showing how I believe my set up works. I m not sure if the physics are right, so I could use your opinion. Here is the link
                        Message 11 of 20 , Nov 3, 2008
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                          I added a picture to my folder showing how I believe my set up works.
                          I'm not sure if the physics are right, so I could use your opinion.
                          Here is the link

                          http://us.a2.yahoofs.com/groups/g_18446573/4bfd/__sr_/c45b.jpg?gro99DJBKFwcDKQU
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