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About Ravnis

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    APHQ Ambassador

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  • Biography
    Worked in plastics and for defense contractors primarily aerospace for 20 years. Now in nursing trying to give back to humanity.
    Aquaponics is my hobby and started in '08. I experiment more than produce trying to learn and the more I learn the more I realize how much there is left to learn.
  • Interests
    computers, video games, renewable energy

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  • Location
    Texas, near Dallas

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  1. I found this link when trying to find more info as I had not heard of this. Anything with an 80 percent remission rate is worth more investigation. Study ERW and Rheumatoid Arthritis I realize the sample size is extremely small, so I would like to see further studies on that with a larger sample size. Overview of research on health effects. It seems similar to when we replace some water in our aquaponic systems and we get a short boost in growth. From what I can gather there are very specific devices for making this water and a lot of quack devices that claim to make it, but really are scams.
  2. Hi, Brushhippie. I did exactly that. There are many ways to do this. There are pex fitting that will connect to 1/2 NPT fittings as well as PVC counterparts. The outer diameter of pex tubing is smaller than same size pvc pipe as that are referring to the internal dimension instead of the outside dimension. The wall thickness are different. There are Sharkbite fittings made out of bronze and other similar fittings made out of plastic. I found the plastic ones at a local Lowe's and if I messed one up, it was cheaper to replace a few dollar fitting than the metal ones that can be up to $20 per fitting. I would run your pvc pipe through the uniseal then attach the pex to the pvc stub with an adapter. Though there was one time I could not find the right fitting and had to get creative with cpvc as an intermediary adapter. Another way I did that was simply have the pex tubing loops just go over the top of the tank and the weight of the tubing would make it sink in to the tank with sufficient loops. the fish just swam around it. Though it did get in the way when trying to net the fish out at harvest, so I would just remove it for that , and then throw it back in. By the way what is the heat source you are planning on using? Wood fire, solar, or something else altogether.?
  3. I don't know the exact height, but looking at pics of others that used shade cloth it tends to be about 6 ft above the plant bed or a little higher. Most commercially made greenhouses typically have a window and it's generally opens when it's above 80F in the greenhouse. I've had my poorly sealed greenhouse reach upper 80's with outside temps in low 20's with the sun shining and 60 to 70's with cloudy days depending on the amount of wind. Even with it closed wind hitting the plastic will cool it to a degree. As far as heat gain with the NFT style setup, it's not the height of the system , it's the flow through the pipes exposed to sun that act as solar water heaters till the foliage develops that I would be concerned with. If you were able to run it last summer without heating above 80 then shouldn't be too much a problem. FYI, my experience with greens is they actually like the cold and handle temp swings to below freezing well for a short period of time without a covering and heat reflection by the shadecloth (works both ways) may be enough to handle a short light frost/freeze.
  4. My first greenhouse, I was pretty clueless and limited budget. I used builders plastic from a big box store. It lasted a few months then split as it was not UV stabilzed and broke during a freeze. An awful inconvenient time to have to recover a green house. True "greenhouse plastic" is thicker i.e. typically 4-6 mil for builders plastic vs 20 mil and has UV stabilizers in it. It's much more expensive , though. My temp control plan has mostly been contain heat and thermal mass. A trickle of water will experience much wider temp swings than larger volumes. I am concerned that your NFT style system will be a net gain of heat for your system water. Do you have a separate tank for the NFT water or way to take heat out of the system? If it were me , I would wait till spring and set it up and see if the heat problem worked like I wanted it to, before worrying about the added cost of freeze protection. My .02. As far as shade cloth, Aluminet worked well for me , but had a little hype attached to the heating/cooling effect. I did not get as much temp control out of it as I had hoped. Make sure you avoid blue shade cloth and look at white shade cloth. I'm guessing that your in the southern part of Texas if you rarely get freezes. Best of luck to you.
  5. Sorry took me so long to respond. My dad is 85 and has had to have a basketball sized tumor removed from his chest and that's been taking up most of my free time for the last few months. Lucky for me that my little system is back to throw a handful of feed a day to fish and pick some bell peppers every now and then. The bags are 50 lbs bags by weight, not sure of the volume. I was able to fill up my 3ft x 2ft tubs about 6 inches deep with 9 of them. I have one bag for make up sand left over. The bags were $5 dollars and some change US. I don't know if there are volume discounts, got it at home depot locally. Comparing the 5 dollar bag that fills about as much volume as the $55 dollar hydroton bag I first started aquaponics with 10 years ago, it's a steal in comparison. If I could find a little bit coarser sand I would go with that. Since the last post, I've had to slow down the flow a little as roots started compacting the sand together. Here is a link from the manufacturer. I hope it helps. Quikrete pool filter sand
  6. Update on the all purpose sand. There is big variance between sand bags and the last ones I bought had a lot of shells in them and compacted. I had moved the system outside for the summer. Drainage became slower till the point it would take an hour to drain and with Daytime temps over 100F it started killing the plants and killed the nitrifying bacteria. This answered by personal question for myself, can flow rate be adjusted to compensate for sand that drained less that ideal. The answer in this particular scenario of high temperatures is a resounding NO. I have since replaced it with pool filter sand from the same company and nitrification has restarted and the plants are rebounding and putting of fruit. So to recap, quickcrete all purpose sand --- too much variation from bag to bag and some bags had high amounts of fines in them. quickcrete pool filter sand -- bought 10 bags so far- appears to be finely ground and sharp quartz crystals- good drainage, no alteration of ph, no visible signs of shells. The roots expand better in the pool sand than the all purpose sand , so growth is definitely better in the looser sand.
  7. After cleaning fish in the 100s at a time camp, I tried the "brain spike" method after watching some videos. If you're just doing a few , say 10 or less at a time, it's probably a good way to do it. The spine and thus spinal cord of tilapia is so close to top of the head, that a good quality cleaning knife cuts though it in about the same amount of time as the spike does anyway, so I quit trying to do it. I've seen other members use clove oil. I've used ice. It slows down their movements, as well as slows down any spoilage while cleaning. Downside is your fingers get very cold.
  8. Is ash clean out any trouble? Really impressive setup.
  9. I had problems with my LED grow-light burning the leaves of my plants, but I had gone from 12 hours light to 24 hours of light and the plants had grown up and were within 18" of the light. I raised the light higher and that stopped the burning.
  10. I'm not a disease expert. Have you considered it might be this. White rust What is your pH. I've found high pH to cause all kinds of problems.
  11. Hey Bigdaddy, Our economy has suffered almost every time a "businessman" has become president. The job of promoting welfare of a country is almost a complete opposite of the mindset of running a business. I found this article interesting. Businessman presidents.
  12. The only way the gubmint is getting mah shark is if they pry it from my cold, dead hands!!!
  13. You can't expect the donald to know what comes out of a "Shole" country now can you If he could only be informed.
  14. David, I would invite you to read or reread about a very similar president of the United States. I won't tell you what to think, but rather ask you to draw your own conclusions. It has been said that history repeats itself if we don't learn from past mistakes. Never before has information been so easily accessible by the masses. This might just make the difference this time. Herbert Hoover As far as news, I would invite you to examine Brainwashing of my dad. A video on tactics the media uses to reprogram the brain. I work in psychiatry and can tell you there are truthful facts in that video. As to the conclusions that are drawn, I believe it is important for everyone to evaluate and draw there own conclusions. This quote is old , but I do believe it applies today. Hear me, people: We have now to deal with another race- small and feeble when our fathers first met them, but now great and overbearing. Strangely enough they have a mind to till the soil and the love of possession is a disease with them. These people have made many rules that the rich may break but the poor may not. They take their tithes from the poor and weak to support the rich and those who rule. Sitting Bull
  15. Cecil, This divide you speak of is it the cause or a symptom of a greater problem. For the last 40 years, our education system has been under attack. Finding people who even pretend to think critically is getting harder to find. I was talking with someone about there values. They were smearing people they classified as Liberals. Yet there values were pretty liberal, but I didn't argue with them. They said they voted the way they did because the church they went to supported that candidate. I just shook my head in disbelief. To me it's an alarming trend that people want others to think for them. Then gripe about the "guvment" cause it wants to tell them what to do. This kind of cognitive disconnect seems to be growing at an alarming rate. Bigdaddy, One of the big problems is that Trump did not win the majority of the vote, but won by the Electoral college votes. He only won the vote by a little more that 25 percent. The electoral college math was messed up when they capped the number of representatives almost a century ago. The number of representatives was supposed to increase with population increase. Since capping it, it gives rural voters almost a 5 to one vote ratio as Urban dwellers. The electoral college's original purpose was to keep a demagogue from being elected, but twice in my lifetime it has caused it to happen. It's an outdated concept that needs revision, but due to our present system it won't. I think eventually we well either have our own version of Hitler or another civil war, That is if global corporations don't render our government systems moot as they take over the world's resources.