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About Mikhail

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    Software engineering, gardening, automation, aquaponics

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  1. Hi Aufin, blasting sand is fairly expensive, twice or 3 times the price when purchasing from homedepo or lowes, and it will be another research project to find local provider for such quality sand. i think i will stick to the quarry order and get it processed this week. i feel i have done plenty research for the local source and ended up finding something 51 miles away. many can claim its easy to find sand, well not the right kind of sand that will #1 drain properly over time, #2 allow furrows to flood consistently, #3 provide oxygen as it drains retaining it to feed the good bacteria that is key to the system and #4 survives the times! that is beside the fact it must be inert and doesn't cause disbalance to ph. not much room to choose how it looks i was fairly obsessed to find the right sand, determined and tried to follow all advice based on reason and analysis to come to best conclusion from my understanding. i might be over-analyzing things but i dont have any better guidance than what i got from various forums. not much of a local source to give me face to face advice and react to questions in real time
  2. so i got a quote back for the spec combination which is a custom order. its pricey, however, its 5 yards, i might as well stock up on this sand if i am to continue to do IAVS with lack of good sources around. i dont know, the problem with local sources is their aggregate is fairly mixed of wide range or sand sizes across the spectrum. they dont exactly have consistent combination. in most cases their particle sizes are too fine. the pricing from local providers for random aggregate is 3 times less, however, getting consistent aggregate from homedepot, lowes in bags will be 500$ more ontop of what i am paying from quarry with delivery. so get trash sand for 3 times less and risk it or get custom order for 3 times more or get it in bags for almost 5 times more than the cheapest solution.
  3. i am probably annoying the quarry sales person with my "custom" order questions for "small" 3 cubic yards of sand (comparing to what they order in minimum, around 20 cubic yards)
  4. Thank You Vkn, i have been in contact with quarry to see if any providers that order from them have similar aggregate of what you mentioned. i am definitely making sure i make the right choice without being too hasty
  5. Hi Gary, i have read this article before and partly agree. I agree on the part that i have plenty of "sources", from Lowes, Homedepot, to local providers, but not local quarries. i am looking for best option, and weighing in on what risks i should take. According to the article, it seems the fine white sand represents what he used. with exception that it looks like fine white sand looks more like crushed granite vs coarse quartz. the silt level also looks to be less than 8% comparing to other grades. the sizes seem to represent same % groups. if that is acceptable then i will just go with fine white sand since it will cost me almost 3 times less than the quarry delivery about 51 miles away of Water Treatment Grade sand that is consistent 1.6 mm that will cost 249$ for the sand with 360$ estimated delivery. Even if i rented the trailer that would haul 3 yards using my SUV or got mini dump truck with maximum capacity of 5 cubic yards myself it will cost about the same :). so this total comes out to be 600$ for 3 Cubic yards of maximum quality sand. versus local provider fine white sand for about 300$ with delivery of 5 cubic yards, that 2 yards more for less. i will do bit more research using the article you included to see what i can find from local providers once again. there are plenty to sift through for sure. Thanks, -Mike
  6. i am coordinating the logistics of sand delivery now, its definitely going to cost either way. however, i understand that the better sand is the sand necessary to have 100% full proof system. so i will take that risk and go forward with this. i have some friends willing to help me transport the product. we will see what happens over the course of next two weeks. in the mean time today i was using hammer drill to get through the final layer of my backyard "dirt" which is past 3.5 feet to bury my 300 gallon ibc tote for the central sump system where the two grow beds will drain and the pump will pump on timer to the 300 gallon fish tank which in turn will fill the grow beds . on friday i went to Harbor Freight and got an 80$ hammer drilll with 20$ bits (vs renting for 70$ for 2 hours + single bit to rent is 20$). it took me 3-4 hours to remove the compacted decomposed granite with the infused rocks which was about 1 foot deep in a about 4x4 foot area. the problem was not hammering the problem was removing what i hammed out ^^. here is the area dug out for the ibc tote/sump: here is the tote placed into the area: that the part where i was still digging: here are the grow beds side by side prepped for positioning after i bury the sump and do all of the plumbing (note the original chop 2 plumbing still present and in background i have my fishtank circulating with single chop 2 approach where some stuff is growing): anyways this is just begining of iavs build... i will post at some point in member build area.. however i did not see designated member built forum section... i will search around
  7. i got a quote, $59.50 a ton. i need about 3 cubic yards so that will be around 7000 pounds which comes out to $416.50. this is also a quarry so i need to get my own 12 foot trailer to pickup the product vs paying 150$ an hour for delivery. loading is only monday - friday 6 AM to 2 PM. this will be interesting.
  8. thanks! i will go with #12
  9. here is what i got from sri. looks like the #12 is my sand to go with which is between 1 to 2 mm. #10 is almost 2 mm in size and maybe too large? if you had a choice between consistent 1.6 mm vs 1.9 mm what would you choose?
  10. i got a reply from sri, they are 51 miles from my location. asking about logistics and details about their products. looks like we may strike some deal.
  11. here is my sand analysis and source from original test: source: size: turbulence test: settling test over night: drainage test:
  12. i left sri a request on their website with requirements and my contact info. will see if they get back to me. if not i will contact them by phone. wish me luck!
  13. thank you! i have not seen this source. i will give it a try! i was almost going to settle on the fine white sand, however last night testing yielded similar results as neighbor with sand leaking through the holes and water being bit dirty containing what seems to be very fine particles yet possibly containing some silt/clay. so i was on fence to make that decision. i didnt want to spend 300$-400$ on 5 cubic yards of sand that will just be wasted. i guess not fully wasted since my kids will love to have gigantic sand playground. i am curious if neighbor ordered the sand from sri company and what where the logistical costs. i sent private message, however her last activity was sometime ago. i will call sri today to find out their pricing, they seem to serve mostly industrial level demands, maybe they serve small folk like picky aquaculture enthusiasts. i hope it wont be too expensive. even if double the price of normal sand delivery i guess will be "OK" vs having wasted effort on properly functioning IAVS. i will have to bag the remaining sand into containers and store it as if its gold.
  14. Hi!

    someone mentioned that you are near the sacramento area and also performed some research on sand source. i am curious if you found a proper sand source? if you did would you point me to the source? That would help me alot since i have already checked several providers and they are no go. 

    thank you in advance!

  15. Hello Everyone, for the past year i have been on a crusade to build my own IAVS system. The next challenge in my IAVS build is to find the right type of sand in the Sacramento area to fill my two grow beds approximately 2.5 yards. However, while searching, i have not yet found the right type of sand that complies with size requirements in the http://iavs.info/how-to/sand-selection-guide/ (1-2 MM approx 40% ). I have found that some samples do better than others to comply with clay/silt contents in the http://iavs.info/how-to/the-5-gallon-bucket-tests/. However, i still have concerns with the ones that contain least amount of silt/clay since the particle size for the majority of the batch seems too fine, thus the sand almost becomes watery when testing the 5 gallon bucket test which leaks out of the 3/16 holes. here are some samples i have tested from local sources: http://www.nimbuslandscapematerials.com/products-cat/masonry-sand - Masonary Sand - washed - particle size is ok sand is inert with vinegar test and ph test was good contains way too much clay and silt. the water was still muddy over night with the settling test that is supposed to settle in few minutes. was not worth to do drainage test since contained way too much clay and silt. http://www.gohasties.com/apps/photos/photo?photoid=78274671 - Fine white sand - washed - granite based particle size is concern, which seem to small, even through i took some samples and checked against the ruler. sand is inert with vinegar test and ph test was good. clay and silt test was way better than the masonry sand. the water was partially gray after allowing to settle for few minutes. the drainage test was a concern. initial gallon of water was fully absorbed and did not drain even through the sand was somewhat moist. after few more gallons it finally started to drain. it took about 2 minutes for single gallon of water to pass through after several cycles. however, the smaller particles of the sand was escaping through the 3/16 holes that where draining the water i took couple of other samples i have yet to test for particle size, ph, vinegar test, which i will then go purchase to do the 5 gallon drainage test. however, if anyone in the Sacramento region knows of a quarry source that can provide the sand that i can trust please forward me the location. this is a fairly tedious process and it seems that i am on some pilgrimage to build IAVS while others looking at me as if i am crazy. When i ask the providers these questions they give me dear in the headlights look as if i am a scientist and belong in the lab. Most of what i have done so far was through personal trial and error with some help from forum. it would be great to find local help. Thanks in Advance! -Mike