Aquaponic Gardening

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Just thought I'd share a weekend project I did to make a homemade overflow for my new aquaponic aquarium. CHIFT-PIST design.  This takes the overflow from the bottom of the fish tank and gravity feeds it to the grow beds. 

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Hung the bucket as high as possible.  Remember, the stand pipe in the bucket is the water height in the aquarium.   Hanging the bucket lower means a taller stand pipe and  leaves less room for the drain underneath which needs to be higher than the grow beds.   I found that about 3″ of water in the bucket works nicely.  In future versions, I may cut the bucket shorter before hanging.

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For mounting, l found perfect little U shaped metal hangars in the lumber section of the hardware store.

The whole point of this is to get the solids from the bottom.  Goldie here is showing you where the solids come from in case you didn’t know.

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The siphon was the biggest challenge and something that will change in version 2.   The little tube is for starting the siphon but I am looking for a clear middle section so I can see if there are any air bubbles left.   The risk is that too much air gets in and the siphon fails.  If that happens, the tank will overflow as the sump empties into the aquarium and does not drain out.    My sump is about 15 gallons so not the end of the world but not fun at all to clean that off the basement floor.

If the pump loses power, no problem, the tank will just stop draining due to the stand pipe and the water level will remain constant.

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For more details and updates, I am posting them on my site at: 


http://jread.us/2013/02/home-made-solids-lifting-overflow-for-aquap...

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I should give credit to some people who contributed to my learning process on this. 

http://mike.creuzer.com/2011/01/aquaponics-solids-lifting-siphon-ov...

http://365aquaponics.blogspot.com/2011/09/bell-siphon-parts-list.html

Also, I changed out the siphon with a solid tube.   Updates have and will be posted at

http://jread.us/2013/02/home-made-solids-lifting-overflow-for-aquap...

That's MUCH bigger than I made mine. Mine's ran great when it's not sucking up snail shells.

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