I helped a friend work on her aquaponics system, and it was really daunting! I'd like to start one as well, but I'm more hesitant to invest the thousands of dollars necessary for a larger system
I'm trying to find a DIY manual or kit for my first system. I've seen the ones at Friendly aquaponics, and I'd like something to compare them to. Can anyone offer another place for DIY manuals?
Yeah, BYAP's "The IBC's of Aquaponics" is a good read, and Travis Hughleys "Barrelponics" manual might be good too...Both are media filled types...Friendly's is raft only...so it depends on what you're looking to build...really though, in a way, much of this site, the other AP sites, and 'the net' in general is a big DIY manual...
There seem to be many, many 'different' ways to do AP. Most of those 'differences' are cosmetic, while only a small few are not. As they all respect a few basic principles and ratios in order to work properly. Like cars...many different flavors out there, but they all basically do the same thing, in the same way...some more efficiently, some with more 'vroom', some more cheaply, while others with useless expenses attached...but still very much the same beast once you strip things (basic functions) down to their most basic...
If you are looking for "complete info in a nutshell" I would go with the 2 mentioned Barrelponics and IBCs of Aquaponics for designing a system. I would say from the knowledge that I know, start with a smaller media based system like these two, with design consideration of adding a raft system later on if you would like to expand.
I am not a fan of endorsing stuff normally (im a bit of a wierdo) but if you really want a foolproof'ish A to Z guide on how to build, cycle and manage a successful the system, Syvlias book is the most complete and accurate guide and for the $20 its worth every penny for the time consideration.(Aquaponic Gardening: A Step-By-Step Guide to Raising Vegetables and...) The internet is still your best source but the hours you need to spend absorbing it all is ridiculous.
Also if you have a good memory, you can use the "rules of thumb" on this site for free as a knowledge reference for the book, and re-gift it :)