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Journeyman

Journeyman's AP Journey

76 posts in this topic

I've been learning and reading heaps and I have an IBC FT with an IBC cut-off GB above it. I started with a couple of goldfish and managed a few weeks back to kill them by adding some of our local water.

A friend had a yabbie in bubble so I dropped her in and haven't seen her since. I put pipe cutoffs in the IBC for them to have as habitats.

As soon as the weather lets up on the soul-searing temps I will get started finally on building my GH - in the meantime I've been thinking through design issues and possible setups for the system I will be putting in the GH. Apart from my current system I have 4 more IBC's (there's a good source for them in Shepparton, $50 each and clean as new - can get plenty of them he says) a couple of joined-at-the-base half 200L barrels, (GB's) a 1000L green basin tank I plan to have as a ST, and a couple of flat plastic boxes I plan to use for growing seedlings.

I also have PVC pipe parts from the previous owner that I have been trying to make fit into what I want to build; it is possible I will need to just buy lengths to set up the plumbing I envision.

Today I bought 40 SP's about 4cm long and after letting the cooler water they were in heat up to near the GB temp I added them into the FT. Several hours later and no floaters so, so far, so good. :D

With fingerlings that size, do I need to hunt out the female yabbie and remove her to protect my fish? She would be only just breeding size, probably about 8cm long. Are the fish likely to be mature enough to avoid her?

Also, with fish that size, how small should the food be? I have some pellets that would be 1mm or less - should I crush them a bit until the fish are bigger?

I also tested my system today before adding the fish. I got a test kit for NO3 and another that does NH4/NH3 combined and a pH meter. My first readings are:

NH4/NH3 - very slightly greener than the lightest chart yellow, but not as green as the 2nd colour. The 1st is 0 and the 2nd is 0.1 mg/L

NO3 - Again, slightly darker than 1st, not as dark as 2nd so between 0 and 6mg/L

pH is 8.2 at top of tank.

I'm presuming from what I have read that I am reasonably safe for the moment with the high pH because the ammonia/nitrites are so low? I'm guessing nitrates are up because I have a treasonable coating of algae on the sides and bottom of the FT - is that correct or have I misunderstood?

I topped up the FT with water treated a week or so back with Seachem Prime - it's been sitting out in the sun for that time and a couple of times I left the lid open in case the chlorine/chloramine removal caused gasses to release. When I got the pH meter yesterday I tested both the water coming into the GB from the reserve IBC and the IBC itself - 10.1 from the reserve and 8.7 in the tank. I dosed the FT with salt - about 400gms, all I had around - into about 900L water. Measured again just before adding the fish and it was down to 8.2. If it isn't down again tomorrow AM I will get some more salt into it.

I've been reading about the Vitamin C treatment for water - not sure where to get it in bulk, but reading what I could find on the Prime there doesn't seem to be too much wrong with it - still I'd prefer to use something like Vit C just to be safe. I'll do some searching but if anyone can point me to a thread on how much to use and what form? About all I know is I can get soluble VitC tablets in a hjar of 1000 for about $10 - should I look for powdered ascorbic acid or similar?

Anything jumping out to anyone as an "OMG what have you done?" :D

Pics will be coming soon as I get going on the building. When the temp comes under 40º that is... :lol:

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I have a birthday coming up and what I want is a hole saw set. When I look online I find there are a number of them but the sizes are strange. I want to be able to cut for 19mm, 25mm, 40mm, 50mm pipe. It would be nice also to be able to do 32mm and 90mm but not essential. The problem is those sizes are internal diameters and I am unsure just how thick the various sizes of pipe are PLUS I'd be using bulkheads or maybe uniseals.

Can anyone tell me what sizes of hole saw I need for those pipes plus bulkheads or uniseals?

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Hi Journeyman,

The photos show the details for 50mm DWV and pressure pipe.....and for 40mm DWV and pressure pipe.

Since UniSeals come in imperial sizes, this US link should be useful, too.

You can buy sets of hole saws.....but it's unlikely that a set will contain all of the hole saws that you'll need for UniSeals.

If you're serious, I'd suggest that you buy the arbor.....and individual hole saws.....like these. You'll get both at Bunnings. They're a lot more expensive....but you'll have them a lot longer.

You can buy the UniSeals from Paul (EG).

Gary

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So I went to B to see what they had to offer - I'd been looking online and what I really wanted from all I saw was $85 - and adjustable hole saw from 20mm to 220. Sounded great but given my current prospective uses it was both overkill and over-priced. The lesser ones were iffy so I went to B to get an idea of what was available - in the past I have found their website doesn't match what they have in the stores.

Then I was going to go to Mitre 10 and after that, look into plumbing stores. Instead I found the Craftright Hole Saw set - it was only $18.50 and has 19,22,29,32,38,44,54,64,76,89,102 & 127MM saws, 2 arbors, one with centre drill and the other not and a backing plate for the larger saws - presumably to counter torque forces on the bigger diameters.

Advertised as suitable for Wood, Plaster Board, Plywood, Plastic and Fibreglass I figure it will see me through most of what I want to do - it would be lovely to go buy a Milwaukee set but I kinda like my wife - be a bugger to see her walk out over something like a hole saw.

:lol: And just to show my bona fides, Gary I have left out at least 3 slightly obscene puns, innuendos and aspersions... :lol:

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Next I am pricing bulkheads - there are a couple of plumbing supply places to check as well as the above retail stores - does anyone know if I need anything more than an ABN to get 'Trade'?

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G'day JM

It can be a little diffucult to get trade at B as they generally require you to have a min monthly spend. You can read their terms and cond. on there web site. I think they also offer a cash trade card but similar restricting terms. Your best bet to get a good trade price is at your smaller chains like M10, Tlink, Home etc. they are normaly quite compedative and normaly offer trade on proof of ABN witout the carry on or commitment.

regards

Brownie

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Hi,

And getting (and keeping) an Australian Business Number (ABN) isn't as easy as it used to be.

Gary

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I have one - got it years back when I was looking into contracting. Used it as recently as 2nd half of last year. We're planning on setting up as a small business for a variety of reasons (not AP related) so I was wondering what the restrictions migh be in getting non-GST prices etc.

Just got in from fixing up the battle ground outside. Bloody yabbie ate some of my fingerlings - the bitch is now in her own 200l tank and I've got maybe 35 SP fingerlings now. Mind you, some of them seem to have grown at least a cm in the 4 or 5 days. I swear none looked over 4cm when they went in last Friday and today there were several around 5cm. I got a close look because I emptied the tanks, cleaned out the poop from the bottom and refilled it.

Nh3/Nh4 and NO3 are all fine but part of the reason for the cleaning was I was getting some almost foam bubbles collecting like scum on the surface. Fish are healthy, water was a bit murky prior to cleaning but I am curious as to what the bubbles were. I left the pump off yesterday for a while during the hottest part of the day and about 30 minutes after I restarted the bubbles were all gone, but they were back again this AM.

Any ideas?

I can't give pH because the meter I got seems to be faulty (display will not settle properly - tried new batteries and still no go) but the latest reading was 7.6 down from 8.2 so I think it's fine for now. Mind you that was before I pumped the water out and back in, so I presume my cleaning will have stirred things up a bit.

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@Wacker - any idea what constitutes proof of an ABN? I presume it is more than just quoting the number? Would letterhead do it? I have one I use fr invoices...

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I was getting some almost foam bubbles collecting like scum on the surface. Fish are healthy, water was a bit murky prior to cleaning but I am curious as to what the bubbles were. I left the pump off yesterday for a while during the hottest part of the day and about 30 minutes after I restarted the bubbles were all gone, but they were back again this AM.

Any ideas?

Dissolved Organic Carbon (DOC)

http://www.esf.edu/hss/DOCWS/DOC%20Workshop/Boyer_DOC.pdf

cheers

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In some cases you will also be required to fillin forms for pre approval ie. B

in many of the smaller just quoting your abn is fine but does change between busineses. You can be required ie. Solver etc to quote builders licences as well to get discount. ABN in these cases is not enough.

Some a simple bus card is enough, realy depends on the store and changes between owners of simmilar chains.

Best is to ring prior to going to find out there policy.

good luck.

Brownie

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Dissolved Organic Carbon (DOC)

http://www.esf.edu/hss/DOCWS/DOC%20Workshop/Boyer_DOC.pdf

cheers

Thanks for the link - are you suggesting the bubbles are DOC? The doc doesn't actually say anything abiout them although it does mention water discolouration. I thought mine was from the algae but thinking back, when it was clear rather than murky, it was a distinct brownish tinge. With the murk, which I am pretty sure is me scraping around trying to catch my fish in the net, the colour is distinctly green.

I'll see how much of the murk clears up with a night of GB filtering.

Any idea how long the yabbie will last in 200L with an airstone before I need to filter the water? I'm looking at what timeline I have to get her a cage to go in the FT and/or to get a filter running. Seems more suited than trying to hook up the 200L to the current system with only one pump available.

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Thanks for the link - are you suggesting the bubbles are DOC? The doc doesn't actually say anything abiout them although it does mention water discolouration. I thought mine was from the algae but thinking back, when it was clear rather than murky, it was a distinct brownish tinge. With the murk, which I am pretty sure is me scraping around trying to catch my fish in the net, the colour is distinctly green.

I'll see how much of the murk clears up with a night of GB filtering.

Here

Muddy Water and Surface Films : Extension : Clemson University : South Carolina

Protein skimmer: Information from Answers.com

Try removing the pants hehe

cheers

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Water is looking clearer, pH is 7.5, Nh3/Nh4 are minimum (just barely not the 0.0 colour but nowhere near the next up the scale 0.1) NO3 is under 6mg/L. Pumping seems to have cleared the murkiness and cleaning the tank seems to have stopped the 'foam' - which from Ande's link looks like it was algae related.

And no floating fingerlings...

All seems well...

(people can see into the yard - pants stay right where they are... *grins*

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And yet another question... :D

My IBC's have large outlets in the base of one side - usual enough I guess. I would like to use it in the FT to make waste removal easier by running a pipe out of there to a collector - the idea is to aerate the wastes and use them as fertiliser on normal beds or wicking beds. It seems an obvious choice because the inside base of the IBC is grooved and sloped towards the outlet - if I agitate the contents it should help collect any solids into the channel and move them towards the outlet.

I had a cruise through Bunnings looking for something that might fit in there but nothing jumped out as obvious. Have any of you used those outlets and if so what did you use to connect?

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Hi,

The "foam" is the product of a number of things.....explained fairly well here.

It can be removed by incorporating a simple skimmer (where a small percentage of the water is drawn off from the surface of the tank) into the system design.

There is always something floating on the water surface. Often it's just oil from the feed......but it can also include wind-borne dust or debris, insects, uneaten food.....or various dissolved organic compounds (the foam)......so incorporating a simple skimmer device into your tank design can be useful.

And (before you ask) no....you don't need a protein skimmer (AKA foam fractionator).

Gary

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Paul had a design with a large surface area sitting around his outlet - I presume that's something like what you are talking about? Does the surface stuff get 'caught' in the plate and left behind while the water overflows the edge into the outlet?

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Hi Journeyman,

Anything that allows for drainage of water from the surface of the fish tank is going to fit the bill.

The attached photos show two (so-called) solids lifting outlets. While neither of them was being used as a skimmer at the time the photos were taken, enabling them for that function is a simple as drilling a few holes.....or creating an overflow weir.....at just just below the waterline - so that a portion of the water leaving the tank does so through the top of the skimmer device.

Gary

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And (before you ask) no....you don't need a protein skimmer (AKA foam fractionator).

Gary

I agree you don't need a protein skimmer.

How ever they are one of the easyest DIY projects you can do.

Here is a simple but good xsample DIY Protein Skimmer

In high density aplications I would recomend or wlecome any/all x-tra filtration

cheers

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Hi Ande,

In high density aplications I would recomend or wlecome any/all x-tra filtration

I agree. My comment was specific to Journeyman's situation and was intended to suggest that he should keep things simple until he get something going. Some of us (me included) tend to spend too much time planning and not enough time doing.

Gary

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I appreciate the time people are taking to help me sort things out. I tend to be the type that gets an idea then starts implementing and kind of adjusting as things become necessary. I promised the missus that this time I would get things right from the start and set things up well enough that she could run it if needed - which basically means it better not be one of my normal 'ongoing tinkering' jobs.

And I have another question :D - I'm wondering if I can make a sort of wicking bed in an IBC base to grow out my seeds. I'm thinking having the wicking set up with water from the FT being maybe 10cm deep in rock media, then mesh (shade cloth or similar) above that with soil on top. The soil would be garden soil mixed with some old compost product. (the place we live had a compost bin down the back - it has long since broken but there's a pile of material still in it) Any suggestions as to what else might be needed would be appreciated. I figure I need something to ensure the water wicks so my growing soil is moist to about a couple of cm from the surface.

The idea is to pipe the water into the base level where the rock is, and use the IBC outlet for drainage if needed. The bed will be in the GH so growing conditions should be good.

Any reasons why this would not work? I'm assuming here that the FT water will replenish the bed with nutrients to grow out the seeds. The water will be coming from the swirl and biofilter to prevent clogging the media - I'm still a bit gobsmacked at how much organic material is in the bottom of the IBC bed I've been running since last June. :)

I'm also working out how I can have tree-type plants in 20L buckets with water piped in and controlled by tap. I'm a bit concerned about height - I'm thinking I will need to raise my FT up so I get more vertical space to use for water fall so I can still pipe back to the ST.

How the heck does anyone produce those lovely diagrams in Sketch-up? I think I'd have to take a week off and ONLY work on that program to get to a point where I can use it effectively. *grumble, grumble* Still I have been able to DL some of the designs and I'm working on producing something I can post to see if and how far my head is up my arse. :lol:

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So I have what I think is something close to what I will be building. Measurements are close enough that I am confident I can place things where they are and still get to everything.

The sun rises from top left corner and crosses diagonally to bottom right.

Any comments, critiques or change suggestions are welcome.

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Note the rain storage feeds in through the GB's deliberately to minimise any shock to the fish from strange water entering.

Also I haven't added in the heating ideas yet - I'm leaving that till I find out how controllable the warmth is using the auto-vents in the GH.

I'm thinking I will be running something like a trombe box design - like a wall but with black tubing full of water in there as well - both water and air will enter the GH at the left end.

I have insulation batts to cover the FT's and any other warm elements - I've got 18 sq m and can get more as needed. I have a sheet metal sheath for one FT along with a cover for the top and the 2nd FT there is not going to be in place initially, so I can trial the heating side of things and see how it goes.

I've got SP fingerlings that seem to be growing very well - I haven't checked them by getting them out but I swear some of them have doubled in size (from between 4 and 5 cm to over 8cm long) since 5th Jan when I got them. I'm getting some eel-tailed catfish tomorrow as well.

They will live in the IBC system until I have the GH system up and running.

So, does this look workable and what have I forgotten?

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The Updated version - added in the proposed hot water system... The fan is low power just to push the air through the Trombe box and into the GH. I'm not sure how much height I will get for the hot water just from the 'heat rises' effect so that may require a low power pump to move it through as well - or more likely a small diversion from the pump in the ST to move it along.

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