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Is draining a media bed into a raft bed feasible? To be more specific: will a 3ft x 4ft (1ft deep) IBC media bed's auto siphon (1inch pipe) discharge move enough water thru a 3ft x 6ft (1ft deep) raft bed, to sustain leafy greens? BTW, siphon drains twice an hour(ish) (250gallon FT, 200 gallon sump, 1100gph pump)

Thanks for your time,

Joel

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Hey Jon.  I was just wondering why a media bed is stressful to maintain?  I thought media beds were easier to maintain as they act as bio filters, solid filters, etc.  And with DWC you had to deal with those things?  

Just wondering.


Jon Parr said:

Using flood and drain media beds would have quadrupled my costs, yielded less than half of the produce, taken a couple of weeks to build, and been stressful to maintain. IMO.




Either/or. I build my beds 12" total, because that is what the materials that I use lend themselves to (72" skrim liner, and 48" rafts), so in my case the rafts would surge from 8-11" (over flow at 12"). If your materials allow you a deeper bed, then that is even better

Joel said:



Jon Parr said:

Actually, I typically don't use flood and drain anymore, and when I do, I use larger raft beds than 3' x 6'. So my fluctuation is less. Still, 3" fluctuation in a raft (12" deep), is fine, no special features needed. 

But since you mentioned it, I do use some special features. More later.

So is your raft at 9" and surges to 12" or 12" surging to 15"?

 

R.K., a flood and drain bed must (regularly and always) flood and drain, or else it fails. One auto-siphon or pump-and-timer is a joy to have, 3-4 is still fun and interesting, 20 is work, and 5000 would be absolute hell. 

Perfect for beer battered fish 'n chips. The only way to get the flavor to work its way throughout the entire fillet.

Question of the day: If you raise a tank of sharks with this method, do you get "hammered"-head sharks?

Vlad Jovanovic said:

Sorry Alex, that must have been a 'typo'. I meant to say ICB's...not IBC's

I hear ya...

I thought people that are doing the big systems are usually only using 1 pump?  

Or did you mean 5000 auto-siphons?  That would suck


Jon Parr said:

R.K., a flood and drain bed must (regularly and always) flood and drain, or else it fails. One auto-siphon or pump-and-timer is a joy to have, 3-4 is still fun and interesting, 20 is work, and 5000 would be absolute hell. 

Yes, RK, 5000 siphons, or pumps or indexing valves, or some combination thereof. Pick your poison.

The point is, I get stellar results from wicking beds and floating rafts, and all of the problems of flood and drain are alleviated, without penalty. I'm not against F&G, by any means, and my evolution of the ideal system may certainly circle back someday. Who knows? That's the fun part. One thing I've not yet experimented with is the FLOUT, which I did get to see in operation at TC's farm. Damned cool, need to try that.

O.K. I'll bite, whats a FLOUT?

Jon Parr said:

Yes, RK, 5000 siphons, or pumps or indexing valves, or some combination thereof. Pick your poison.

The point is, I get stellar results from wicking beds and floating rafts, and all of the problems of flood and drain are alleviated, without penalty. I'm not against F&G, by any means, and my evolution of the ideal system may certainly circle back someday. Who knows? That's the fun part. One thing I've not yet experimented with is the FLOUT, which I did get to see in operation at TC's farm. Damned cool, need to try that.
Yes...what's a Flout and do you have any pics of the wicking bed dwc raft working together? That seems really interesting.
http://www.aquaponiclynx.com/products/aquaponic-systems-and-compone...

Pictures of wicking/raft combo will take a little bit. My experiments are dismantled at the moment, and new beds are being built at the new GH next week. Should have some pics in a week or two. Bug me again for them.

Okay...I'll bug you after I get back from my trip.

You have pics of the raft to wic bed?

What? Raft to wicking bed can't work, the loss of water would to much to manage. Right???? But if you have one running I'd like to see that too.

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