Aquaponic Gardening

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the big tank is 4'x8'x18"

the 2 smaller ones are 4'x4'x10"

and a 27 gallon rubber maid

 

I can get or make from pond liner one more tank to use in the system , not sure what to add. I want to grow prawns under a raft and trout or tilapia and lots of veggies. Any suggestions are welcome. Pictures on my page

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If you are worried about things that can fail and cause problems, then I would recommend against float switches since they are not perfect either.

If you want to do CHIFT PIST (constant height in fish tank pump in sump tank) then you will have to drill a hole and plumb through the fish tank.

 

If you want to keep it simple but still protect your fish in case of plumbing getting knocked out of a grow bed or something,

I would recommend installing the pump a few inches up off the bottom of the fish tank so that if something does go wrong, it will probably only be your pump that pays the price (and many mag drive pumps have thermal cut off in case of running dry of you want to shop for that.)

Anyway, if you secure your plumbing and have the pump off the bottom between 4-10 inches then you have a good chance of your fish surviving as long as you are around to catch the problem before it persists too long.

thank you for the CHIFT PIST translation .... I am considering doing that .......

1) what do I use after I drill the hole , like a giant grommet , can I get them at home depot in the 1" or 2 " size  ?   

2) my tank is fiberglass .....

3)How big does my sump have to be ?

4) what size pump so I can expand  but not over circulate what I have now..... ?



TCLynx said:

If you are worried about things that can fail and cause problems, then I would recommend against float switches since they are not perfect either.

If you want to do CHIFT PIST (constant height in fish tank pump in sump tank) then you will have to drill a hole and plumb through the fish tank.

 

If you want to keep it simple but still protect your fish in case of plumbing getting knocked out of a grow bed or something,

I would recommend installing the pump a few inches up off the bottom of the fish tank so that if something does go wrong, it will probably only be your pump that pays the price (and many mag drive pumps have thermal cut off in case of running dry of you want to shop for that.)

Anyway, if you secure your plumbing and have the pump off the bottom between 4-10 inches then you have a good chance of your fish surviving as long as you are around to catch the problem before it persists too long.

Size of the plumbing will need to be based on the flow rate and you will probably be limited by those little spillways and the flow through those beds.

Seeing as you are starting out doing constant flood in your system, there isn't much danger of water level fluctuation so your  sump tank needs to be big enough to keep up with your pump.

 

Normally a sump tank is sized to handle all the water level fluctuation to flood the grow beds all at once plus some extra to keep the pump from running dry (most pumps can't suck the last inch or so out of a tank and you want a little extra sump tank capacity so you don't have to do the topping up every single day to keep the pump from burning up.)  Since you are not doing flood and drain at this point you might get away from a fairly small sump but don't go so small that your pump will be sucking air once the pipes are all full of water.  Like something bigger than a 5 gallon bucket would be advisable.

 

So how many gallons is that fish tank do you estimate?  Then figure you need to pump at least that much water per hour at the head required.  Then make sure your plumbing from the fish tank tot he sump will be able to handle at least twice that under gravity flow.  Or start with the 2" drain and if that isn't enough you get another.

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