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I'm building a small DWC system, and am trying to decide what kind of filter to use for solids removal.

Is a swirl filter better, or should I use one of those filters with a sheet running through the middle the the water has to go under.

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Hi Jim,
I know this is off subject. But this week I had some great growth The best Yet. I noticed this weekend that there is a Green like algae with bubbles in it starting to grow on the surface. And a darker kinda hairy looking stuff forming on the rocks. The water is clear. Is this a bad thing? Or part of the Eco system? Or if you know Jeremiah :)

Thx Aquaman

new territory to me as well.........but I would think its ok. I made a koi pond once out of a railroad tarp.....as in the kind that covers an entire rail car ...... I worked for Osuliven ind. and we made ready to assemble furnature.....got wood in by the train load and we were free to take them home. I don't remember the exact size but it was huge and I had an extra (I used to bring them home to cover rows of big round baled hay we fed in the winter to livestock)...it worked for several years with no ill effects on the koi. was still holding water when I tore it out after 5yrs.

btw I fully intend to take a pic of that SOS skimmer and post it.........as soon as I figure out how to post pics . I accualy think I can copy it into a bigger model and one that includes the bottem filter pipe jims pic shows.
 
Jim Fisk said:

There is less turbulence in my swirl than there is in his plate. That and the gentle centrifugal force is what allows the solids to settle. It works perfectly. It does what it is supposed to do; keep any and all solids from leaving the filter. Swirl filters are used in industry all the time for separating out solids.

Ready for the liner. Tomorrow. Hey, you guys know if an above ground pool liner is ok? A freebie from my son that will save a bundle but this IS new territory for me. I'll have to look it up. I do see lots of FTs made from above gr pools so I have assumed it is ok. Thoughts?

@ Jim, I'll be that the swimming pool liner is probably not food-safe but it's probably also not dangerous.  I've got a friend who worked for the FDA for a while, and he says that the most common problems from stuff like that is where it was used to line tanks that had chemicals in them.  The plastic absorbs the chemicals and then releases them over time.  Not sure if your pool liner is used or not.

@ aquaman.  I've had the problem you describe with an older system.  It's fungus.  It might bother your plants or it might not.  In aquaponics there is so much bacteria that and nutrients that your plants will likely be healthy enough to weather the competition.  If you can, I'd add a couple more inches of media or lower the overflow a bit.  If you only flood up to 2-3" below the top of the media the algae will grow less.  Or you could do what I do, which is insulate the top and then there's no algae.

that was the only issue I could think of too jeremiah.......plastic and chems.........but I also am not familiar on what kinds of chems are used in pools either  .  however I did some research and you would be surprised  what "fish safe" on a label really means. it isn't much because there are no real standards to meet . Firestones standerd is to put fish in there liner and if there still alive after I think it was 5 days, its "fish safe". also I looked around on some pond and koi sites and it turns out pool liners are used fairly often with no ill effects. most all who build big ponds don't even use the liners sold for koi ponds they use something else. pool liners, EPDM roofing, ect because of what a traditional liner would cost in a comparable size. some have been in use for several years and no ill effects on the fish.

I know there are some differences, like "our" fish are for human consumption and so are the plants........but it seems they will survive anyway
 
Jeremiah Robinson said:

@ Jim, I'll be that the swimming pool liner is probably not food-safe but it's probably also not dangerous.  I've got a friend who worked for the FDA for a while, and he says that the most common problems from stuff like that is where it was used to line tanks that had chemicals in them.  The plastic absorbs the chemicals and then releases them over time.  Not sure if your pool liner is used or not.

@ aquaman.  I've had the problem you describe with an older system.  It's fungus.  It might bother your plants or it might not.  In aquaponics there is so much bacteria that and nutrients that your plants will likely be healthy enough to weather the competition.  If you can, I'd add a couple more inches of media or lower the overflow a bit.  If you only flood up to 2-3" below the top of the media the algae will grow less.  Or you could do what I do, which is insulate the top and then there's no algae.

Should be fine. Green is good in my experience. Pretty much what Jeremiah said. Less Sun hitting the water wherever possible should keep it under control. You might be on the verge of a bloom when all the water turns green soup. That happened to us early on and my sediment poly-fil filter straightened that out in 24 hrs just by trapping the little green buggers. I only ran the bypass water thru it and it did wonders. Slotted down pipe in lid and a T exit dropping right back into the below grade sump:In small quantity they actually add oxygen and food but when a bloom dies suddenly that overwhelms the system and sucks all the O2 out of the system. So keep an eye on that clear water. Now the black bacteria that were building up around my inlets in the GB gravel started making me nervous and that is why I stopped all perceptible solids with the swirl filter and changed out most of the black gravel. Looking much better now. Staying alert to changes is very important.

Thanks for the liner info to all. It is used but has sat for a few years so any chlorine, assuming they used it, should be long gone. I get to see it today and figure out the best way to cut it. I really hate the idea of big goofy corner folds. Anyone had any luck seaming or repairing that stuff? I am tempted to try making neat, cut and welded corners. Here's a pic of the new bed. 12' x 40"

aquaman said:

Hi Jim,
I know this is off subject. But this week I had some great growth The best Yet. I noticed this weekend that there is a Green like algae with bubbles in it starting to grow on the surface. And a darker kinda hairy looking stuff forming on the rocks. The water is clear. Is this a bad thing? Or part of the Eco system? Or if you know Jeremiah :)

Thx Aquaman

Ok, I just had to share this  with you guys. This note:

"Thanks Guys, God bless Uncle Sam and American Engineering! Regards, Marg & Gary" 

just came in with an order for 4 siphons from Australia (again) and apparently even there it is hard to get the materials to make a simple siphon and isn't that where AP started? We are so blessed in the US that we take simple things like plumbing materials for granted. A large portion of our siphon sales is coming from over seas now and it is getting very apparent from my correspondence with these customers that this is universally true even in Germany, England, Ireland, Affganistan (well that makes sense) Hong Kong, Sweden, and on and on. Often the shipping and the import duties are more than the siphons. We should count our blessings. This has been a real eye opener.

Hi folks I have been using my x swimming pool for over a year.  Have had no bad things happen.  In the enclosed picture you`ll profuse growth of plants.  They are beautiful and the catfish, sunfish and minnows that are buzzing around under  seem to be quite happy.  As soon as the tilapia grow to fingerling size they will find there new home there, well which ever I have the most of boys or  girls.  What ever is the least amount will be the aquaponics tank IBC. 

larry poe said:

that was the only issue I could think of too jeremiah.......plastic and chems.........but I also am not familiar on what kinds of chems are used in pools either  .  however I did some research and you would be surprised  what "fish safe" on a label really means. it isn't much because there are no real standards to meet . Firestones standerd is to put fish in there liner and if there still alive after I think it was 5 days, its "fish safe". also I looked around on some pond and koi sites and it turns out pool liners are used fairly often with no ill effects. most all who build big ponds don't even use the liners sold for koi ponds they use something else. pool liners, EPDM roofing, ect because of what a traditional liner would cost in a comparable size. some have been in use for several years and no ill effects on the fish.

I know there are some differences, like "our" fish are for human consumption and so are the plants........but it seems they will survive anyway
 
Jeremiah Robinson said:

@ Jim, I'll be that the swimming pool liner is probably not food-safe but it's probably also not dangerous.  I've got a friend who worked for the FDA for a while, and he says that the most common problems from stuff like that is where it was used to line tanks that had chemicals in them.  The plastic absorbs the chemicals and then releases them over time.  Not sure if your pool liner is used or not.

@ aquaman.  I've had the problem you describe with an older system.  It's fungus.  It might bother your plants or it might not.  In aquaponics there is so much bacteria that and nutrients that your plants will likely be healthy enough to weather the competition.  If you can, I'd add a couple more inches of media or lower the overflow a bit.  If you only flood up to 2-3" below the top of the media the algae will grow less.  Or you could do what I do, which is insulate the top and then there's no algae.

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Looking good Melvin. Thanks for the info. I feel better already. Great looking Hyacinth, I believe? I will have to get some for my Trout. Could get in the way I suppose during harvest, would be my only concern here.

Hey thx so much guys. So Jeremiah how do you insulate the top of the GB? I am getting ready to put up shade material over the grow beds will this help some?

Hey Jim  Tks.  If and when your ready to harvest just move the Hyacinth out of the way.  Just put it on the ground then when dun harvest just put it back.  If your are in cold country it will die off mostly.  Save a piece inside then put it in when spring shows up.  There is also "fresh water seaweed" below.  Looks like anacherous(spelling).  Great hiding place for fish and crawdads.

Jim Fisk said:

Looking good Melvin. Thanks for the info. I feel better already. Great looking Hyacinth, I believe? I will have to get some for my Trout. Could get in the way I suppose during harvest, would be my only concern here.

Aquaman, I have taken to covering my media grow beds with white sheets (in place of the Winter's heavy duty bubblewrap from furniture store dumpsters) placed on the same tunnel that I made to keep them warm during cold Winter nights. It seems to help a lot as we see our water temps hitting 70F which is as high as I want to see them for the trout's sake. I find that 10' sections of 1/2" cpvc (HW pipe) fit the IBC frame well, can be squeezed in between the frame and the liner about every 3-4' and take on a nice curved shape. Keeps the lettuce from bolting as well. A ridge pole ties them together at the top and is held in place with zip ties. This way you can make any length cover fast. A GH within the GH. Once your GBs are naturally covered with greens you are all set but getting to that point can take a little nudge with said cover. The frame work can support beans, peas, or any other vine that can take the place of the sheets as well down the road.

My 5 IBC FTs are in their own shaded and ventilated fish room on the N side of the GH so those tanks are all set. I will be replacing the brown metal roof and the clear panels in there with all white panels in the future (metal and plastic alike). Winter Sun never hits that roof, only Summer Sun. One more learning lesson that needs to be addressed down the road as $ allows. Those brown panels get real hot just when you don't want real hot and the clear panels let a bit too much Sun in there for no good reason. There were no white translucent panels available when I covered the fish room and I already had the brown panels in stock at the time.

I plan on a second layer of shade greens for the new raft bed as well, grown on a framework about 4' above the raft bed.

aquaman said:

Hey thx so much guys. So Jeremiah how do you insulate the top of the GB? I am getting ready to put up shade material over the grow beds will this help some?

Great, that sounds easy enough. I hope to keep the system water above 60F next Winter so I wonder if it will tolerate that. Haven't done the FT veggies for a year at least.  Now that it is all very stable I will have to try it again. The fish will be thrilled.

Melvin Avery said:

Hey Jim  Tks.  If and when your ready to harvest just move the Hyacinth out of the way.  Just put it on the ground then when dun harvest just put it back.  If your are in cold country it will die off mostly.  Save a piece inside then put it in when spring shows up.  There is also "fresh water seaweed" below.  Looks like anacherous(spelling).  Great hiding place for fish and crawdads.

Jim Fisk said:

Looking good Melvin. Thanks for the info. I feel better already. Great looking Hyacinth, I believe? I will have to get some for my Trout. Could get in the way I suppose during harvest, would be my only concern here.

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