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  1. Like
    Slipshodman reacted to Grover65k in Giant Pink Gourami – Billabong Ontknoping   
    Rise of the CST...
    And now, the all NEW! and EXCITING! Cetus Sieve Thingie !!!
    With a little help from a Seth Afrikaan friend, the Cetus Sieve has been installed in lieu of the BCF.  (It's only been a year or two since I bought it - you can't hurry these things.)

    And yes, it's rather BIG !
    I've lowered the frame it sits on (weight rating of the frame is 1,000kg - it should hold up), and tomorrow I'll restart the plumbing installation. The timber panel is marine plywood to spread the weight, and it'll get a coat of outdoor varnish to encourage longer life.
    Similar to before  - the water flow will be through the CST, down to the Blagdon UVs, then up in the BBB (Big Blue Barrels), and then off to the BBF (Bog Bed Filter) which is still being (slowly) filled as I wash the scoria. From there it should trickle back as CLEAN water to the Billabong. Did another bag today, so only 30+ to go       And the housemate wants to plant cherry tomatoes in the scoria !
    Small technical alteration to the CST.
    The clean water drain was only a single 45mm outlet, so I re-drilled that hole to 50mm and added a second 50mm one on the other side to install the Pool Eyes (reference: a couple of posts prior).  This way I can split the water between the 4 Blagdon UV pairs.

    The other thing I've learnt in plumbing is to connect all the ag pipe first and leave the pool eye install right at the end. This is because you are always screwing or twisting the ag pipe connectors and right-angled bends to get a minimum of kinks in the hose path, and the very last bit should be the attaching of the pool eye which is then slathered in silicone and stuck where it is supposed to go (meaning no screwing things into the pool eye which would break the silicone seal).
    That's it for today.
    (Billabong temperature has dropped to 21degC - no cause for alarm yet but he is a lert.
    Also alert, but basically he's one of the "lert" variety of aquariusists)
  2. Like
    Slipshodman reacted to DFishkeeper in Large breeding fishroom for sale ~ Gold Coast   
    Hi Winston, no longer having a big fishroom will definately decrease my stress levels as well as the strain on my dodgy old knees and back  
    As far as my favourite memories about the hobby, these are my top few memories :
    (i) ~ I really enjoyed the personal contact and camaraderie in the hobby in pre-internet days, particularly the 1980's and 1990's when attending fish club meetings and auctions was the only way to meet experienced breeders  and obtain information and hard to get fish. Most weekends I had lots of visitors who I enjoyed showing around my garage fishroom and talking about fishkeeping and breeding. Unfortunately the advent of the internet and facebook has changed the hobby and people in general, and in the last 12 years or so I found myself no longer willing to entertain strangers in my fishroom and home.
    (ii) I can't remember the exact date but a few months after the restrictions on importing Frontosa were lifted I managed to buy one of the very first imported wild caught groups of Ikola frontosa. I bought 7 young fish at around 12cm or so from Bay Fish and ended up with a nice colony of 2m 5f. After only having access to Burundi and Kigoma variants in Australia prior to this, the Ikola were a stunning contrast and were my favourite fish for many years.
    (iii) Around 20 years or so ago I managed to obtain an adult breeding colony 1m 3f of cuckoo catfish (Synodontis multipunctatus) at a time when they were quite scarce and expensive in Australia. I was fascinated by their breeding method and bred them in good numbers for quite a few years with a variety of hosts and never got sick of them, they have remained one of my favourite fish right to the end.
    (iv) In 2007/2008 my children finished school and became relatively independant, so I was able to get my wife's support to build a 12 x 4 metre shed in the backyard to setup as a dedicated breeding room. My old fishroom in the garage had evolved over the years and was made up of piecemeal racking systems and tanks, including some home made tanks. It was a dream come true for me to be able to design and build a purpose built fishroom from scratch and I thoroughly enjoyed the whole exercise. When I built the fishroom I planned to be using it well into my 70's, but the universe has different ideas, at least I got 12 great years out of it.
    Cheers, Doug
  3. Like
    Slipshodman reacted to aquaholic99 in heater time!   
    Most heat is lost through the top of the tank so make sure you have full cover lids. One of my sheds is not room heated so I put sheets of 15mm polystyrene on top of the glass lids and throw a plastic sheet over the whole rack. I see lots of condensation and the air feels warm underneath so I am sure it works. At least that's what I tell myself. I get scary power bills.
    You can use a light beam thermometer gun if you want to find heat leakages on tanks or fish rooms. Good for annoying the neighbours cats too.
  4. Like
    Slipshodman got a reaction from crusty76 in Auto Siphons   
    thank you @aquaholic99 for sharing this knowledge, I really appreciate the time you have taken putting this down in print
    I am still taking it all in and working out how i might apply some of this to my garage set up 
    Thanks again 
  5. Like
    Slipshodman reacted to aquaholic99 in Auto Siphons   
    Here is a photo of an auto siphon to create a flushing filter. This is an overhead filter using a 200L barrel but it could be in a sump and doesn't need to be as big.
    The inside pipes before media is added - very simple. Water comes in through the 90mm pipe at top. The water level rises and falls inside the filter to create a wave tank.

    The media used can be anything that doesn't float.
    The photo below is rapid seeding of hydroton clay balls. No fish, just a heap of ammonia. If you want to boost other (hetrotrophic) microbes for bio film production you can add sugar as well. Power head circulating flow through an aged sponge filter.

    This is the end result below. As I didn't want to waste the energy of pumped water up to the barrel, I decided to add a moving bed bedside the flushing barrel as well.
    A moving bed of K1 is a bio film filter. Often confused with a fluidised bed filter. Happy to asnswer any questions but please google first as there is plenty of better explanations online elsewhere. Simplistically, having the media circulate to the surface allows fish waste and oxygen to the bacterial colonies. There is 16500 LPH of pumped water flowing through the moving bed barrel so the air pump is not necessary but it's a good safeguard against power failure if your air pump is backed up. This is energy wasteful so I was going to replace this with a normally closed solenoid tap to drain out. During a power outage the solenoid fails open so all the water drains out. However after some thought, I decided to drill a permanent 4mm hole. When the pump runs, there is plenty of water. If the power fails, the barrel will slowly drain allowing air to get in. No moving parts to fail. Saved $12 on a solenid tap. I have removed the air pump now.
    After the moving bed, the water gravity drains into the flushing filter. The flushing filter will re-oxygenate the water and provide additonal bio and mechanical filtration. Instead of having the media move (like a moving bed filter) the water level rises and falls so oxygen and fish waste are brought to the media in a different way.

    Photo of inside the moving bed filter below. The thinner pipe on right (40mm) is incoming pumped water which goes to the bottom of barrel and points back up to stir. The left thick pipe is 90mm stormwater as an overflow drain. It has lots of slits to stop K1 escaping and a T at top to let air out.

  6. Like
    Slipshodman reacted to gingerbeer in Corona Project   
  7. Like
    Slipshodman reacted to Grover65k in Giant Pink Gourami – Billabong Ontknoping   
    Thanx @Slipshodman
    That made me LOL !
    Excellent idea, and just to keep you updated - I managed to was a whole 3 bags of scoria yesterday
    (his back is recovering today!)
  8. Haha
    Slipshodman got a reaction from Grover65k in Giant Pink Gourami – Billabong Ontknoping   
    I think i see the problem @Grover65k
    A very large BBF v's a small strainer for scoria , not a fair match up at all.... 
    Save your back and think bigger on the cleaning process 
    Start with an old washing machine, 

    Add Stones, well in this case Scoria .

    And run , can even chuck in  a pair of jeans to get that stone washed look like this guy...
    Wash till machine carks it and start again at step one, find another old washing machine ...and so on 
    Good luck 
    ***Beware if you use someone else's washing machine, I think there may be hell to pay 
  9. Like
    Slipshodman reacted to aquaholic99 in Auto Siphons   
    Usage #1 - Tank turn over
    To keep the crap off the bottom of glass bottom tanks, most recommend a water flow which turns the tank volume over several times an hour. This stirs the muck into the water column and stops it from settling out so the power filter can pick it up.
    For a 120 litre tank, it is pretty easy to turn over 3 times an hour but this becomes a bit more difficult for a 12,000 L tank or system of tanks. Yes it is possible with big powerful pumps but the running costs become prohibitive. A swim pool pump (high volume - high pressure) for example will do this effortlessly but power consumption is high. It is difficult to find high volume - low pressure water pumps unless you attempt to run several smaller pumps at the same time. Some pond pumps come close and more recent technology has improved this somewhat.
    This is a photo of my goldfish racks. It holds 60 x 200L tanks (90cm x 60cm x 38cm) on three tiers. Goldfish are particularly messy fish.
    The top tier of tanks each recieve a slow water fill from a central sump filter with the water pump. Every tank has air driven sponges, so the sump and water turn over is primarily for auto water change and evenly distribute water chemistry. However I want to reduce tank maintanance without high power bills.

    With a corner divider in each tank, I create an internal chamber containing an auto siphon which will fill and fast drain. 

    So top tanks slowly fill until this triggers the auto siphon drain which rapidly empties the corner internal chamber into the tank directly below to produce a quick fill (and stir) followed by a rapid drain into the tier below. If you look at the dark tank picture attached below you can see bottom pipes (45 degree elbowed pipes) which drop into the tanks below. I am able to use a 10,000 LPH pump to clean cost effectively.

    The fish love the oxygenation aspects. And I fill the drain chamber with bio balls to make a wet dry flood zone of bio media because it would be a waste of energy not to.
    This creates a noisy system so you do need to love the sound of water.
  10. Like
    Slipshodman reacted to aquaholic99 in Auto Siphons   
    Usage #2 - Rapid sump drainage
    On another system I run 18 x 500L green tubs (9 tonne water). These are circular tubs so very easy to create a circular swirl flow with a tap positioned tangentially. With a central drain pipe and outer sleeve, I can pick up the bottom crap easily. In fact I can harvest fish by pulling both pipes and letting the fish drain out to a collection net in sump as the pipes increase in diameter. This system has automatic water change via a 24/7 constant drip.

    One of the problems with this setup is the lack of space under the bottom tubs for a sump. I did not want to cut the concrete slab or put an external sump outside the shed (below ground). There is only 30cm clearance. It is possible to daisy chain several sumps to gain a bigger volume but that creates further issues. And I wanted a glass sump because I harvest fish through the sump. In fact, I empty one tub at a time during harvest by pulling out the central stand pipes drain.
    So my sump needs to be big enough to handle the excess water (overflow from tanks) if a power outage occurs but this is very difficult on small sumps for large volume racks. However with the constant drip water change, the sump is quite full. This is also to safe guard against the pump running dry and burning out.

    So I use an auto siphon on the sump which will rapidly drain water during a power outage. This still leaves enough water for the system to restart when the power returns and the drip will top back up within a day.

    The U tube is the auto siphon. The adjacent vertical pipe (stand pipe drain) is the water height I want to retain in the sump. There isn't a lot of difference in height but these siphons can be very precise if you design with care. Take note of the siphon break hole on the U tube stem.
    During normal use, the vertical stand pipe drains out the excess water from the constant drip. This does not need to be a big drain as even a slow continual drip can change considerable volumes of water. I set this for 20% daily as these are growout tubs.
    During sudden water height increases, the vertical stand pipe drain can't cope so the water level rises until the auto siphon kicks in. This drops the water level down until the anti siphon hole is reached which breaks the sipon. And if water is still coming in and overwhelms the vertical standpipe drain again, the cycle repeats. This is quite reliable as there are no moving parts.
    The photo below may explain better.
    Ignore the downward elbow on closed valve tap as this is to drain the sump completely if I need to clean it. Having tight sump clearances create lots of issues.
    I have started using sumps on steel post (rollers) to slide out now but that's another topic.

  11. Like
    Slipshodman reacted to aquaholic99 in Auto Siphons   
    Didn't want to de-rail Grover's BBF thread so I will start a new topic about auto siphons.
    There are at least three different designs and several variations of these auto siphons, but the principle is always the same.
    * Water fills the tank which can take a while if the tank volume is large or the water flow is small.
    * At the set volume (water height), the siphon self generates when internal air inside the siphon is displaced and the falling weight of water pulls more water down with it.
    * A siphon drains water much faster than an overflow drain. If this is greater than the incoming water, the water level in the tank will drop until no more water is left to remove and air is sucked in which breaks the siphon cycle.
    * A new cycle is completed and tank starts to gradually fill again.
    Most commonly used in hydroponic flood beds.  Look up Bell siphon, affnan siphon, auto siphon etc. Youtube would have educational videos and clearer explanations so I won't bother but please ask if you have questions.
    Onto the interesting usage aspect(s). Most fish keepers love water. I use auto siphons in a few different ways. These are not for everyone, but might be interesting for some and might spark some improvement ideas for others.
    This is a simple auto siphon - hmm not sure if the photos will end up where I want them to be...

  12. Like
    Slipshodman got a reaction from Pepperbris in Giant Pink Gourami – Billabong Ontknoping   
    Hi @aquaholic99
    Love to see a diagram (explanation) of this if you ever have the time, mainly around the flood drain auto siphon.
    (side note: thank you for always sharing your experience) 
    P.S. Love ya work Grover, so glad you are back tinkering around the billabong. love the read 
  13. Like
    Slipshodman reacted to aquaholic99 in Giant Pink Gourami – Billabong Ontknoping   
    Hi Grover, 
     Lots of fans watching and wishing you luck. If it wasn't for our unfortunate times, you could have an army of excited volunteers. 
    Don't seive the scoria when dry. I suggest filling your seive about a third full of scoria straight out of the bag and swirling it in a container full of water. This will remove all the dust - mud -  small particles at once. Don't stop for clean water between sieves but do expect lots of red mud at the bottom. So chose a convenient location for that. 
    I used my scoria in 2 x 200L blue barrels which flood & drain automatically by siphon. The water is pumped in at a constant rate, the barrel fills up until a siphon is triggered then drains out faster than the pump fills. No moving parts. This was to maximise all the media as a wet-dry bio filter without requiring a drip tray or spray bar to distribute and also prevent channeling in media. Having the water rise within the barrel pushes all the old air out so it gets replaced fresh air each time (guaranteed) enabling excellent aerobic conditions which is good for bio bacteria and good for the tank so I don't need a re-gassing section (replacing depleted oxygen). If there is a lengthy power or pump outage, the media stays moist and aerobic for over a week. I put a venturi on the siphoned water not because aeration is needed but because it's a very easy visual check. 
    In your case, the BBF area is so large that a flood is not needed. Just run about 15cm of water through the bottom as a constant submerged filter. Very very good biological capacity doing that alone. Flooding will not give you more bio filtration as fish load will be the limiting factor. You can't grow more bacteria unless there is enough food for them. And your plants will reduce this even more. However, if you do flood, I suggest to install a clear external pipe or silicon tube so you can monitor the water height (unseen) on the inside. Not essential but convenient for an easy visual check. 
  14. Like
    Slipshodman reacted to QldMick in who wants colored natives?   
    just run into a few of these on the net lately so i thought i would save as many as i could on the computer.
    sorry some of these have already been posted here but now they'll be all together so people can see the possibilities for natives out their.



  15. Like
    Slipshodman reacted to Grover65k in Giant Pink Gourami – Billabong Ontknoping   
    BBF Re-Run!
    (or "The Bog Bed Filter finally gets put together")
    OK cobbers, it's been a few years waiting but Grover is finally getting his act together in the filtering department.
    I've decided that this stay-at-home exercise is the time to move on re-building the Billabong filtration area. You saw the tank and stand go in (yes, a year or more ago), and have been patiently waiting for something (anything!) to actually happen. Now it is !

    The tank was cleaned of bird poo, leaves, and algae growth. The geo-tex matting stuff has been laid on the bottom to at least slow down the scoria from trying to wear holes in the bottom of the tank.  And a few bags plopped in to hold the matting down temporarily.
    Grover then goes off to read the aquaponics threads about the use & mis-use of scoria in aquaponic garden beds...
    Backyard Aquaponics - 2011 onwards
    Of course my nearby LFS (aka "Bunnings") has bagged scoria for a price.  Don't worry - my intent is to let it get rinsed with rainwater for as long as it takes to remove the red dust, and then to check the pH levels of the water to ensure it is safe for the GPGs.

    Compared with cubic meter price in Melbourne (where they actually have extinct volcanoes in the countryside), "B" are somewhat exorbitant. But then the transport cost from VIC to QLD means buying it from Melbourne is NOT cost effective either!   Oh well.   
    Now I just need a 4.5tonne truck to deliver a pallet load to fill the BBF...
    Stay tuned 
    ( PS: the GPGs are alert, but not yet alarmed! )
  16. Sad
    Slipshodman got a reaction from danfishy84 in Growth on mouth - URGENT assistance please   
    Thanks mate
    Unfortunately what ever it was progressed so quickly overnight the growth swelled so large it blocked his whole mouth and he was dead this morning  
  17. Like
    Slipshodman reacted to aquaholic99 in How do i connect Acrylic panels to stand?   
    As you already have the acrylic panels and you want light in, I would screw in an aluminium U channel at top and bottom to make sliding rails. I thinkyou can get single or double rails depending on how you want to slide panels. Allow gap - room to lift the panels out when needed. The acrylic will bend with time and letting light in may cause an algae issue. 
    Could try plastic channel but aluminium will withstand rough treatment much better. 
  18. Haha
    Slipshodman reacted to danfishy84 in Corona’s affect on the hobby   
    It's a bit hard breeding fish when your trying to make them keep a safe distance from each other. Don't even get me started on them washing their fins. Better chance training them to crap up the same end of the tank and I think we all know how well that would go down. 
    Someone offered me a trade last night on a gum tree ad.
    Pleco for toilet paper swap...... I sh!t you not.
  19. Like
    Slipshodman reacted to Grover65k in Giant Pink Gourami – Billabong Ontknoping   
    Ha ha!
    Rumours of Grover's demise have been greatly exaggerated 
    He's currently in Sydney, for a few weeks of work, and has left the GPGs in the care of a new housemate. Fully detailed instructions about feeding peas, beans, cherry tomatoes, and the tearing apart of lettuces with your bare hands were provided. Also, the fishy filters were cleaned and water plant islands reviewed. New housemate looks to be a very reliable lady and is not fazed by giant monsters in the Billabong, nor by The Dog. Actually The Dog quite approves of her if the tail-wagging is any guide.
    Grover has been a good procrastinator lately. He's decided that re-building the Big Box Filter can wait til Easter. Taking some work leave then to do the plumbing job properly ( = expensively).
    Thanx for the vote of confidence, I only write this because I know there's at least 6 people who read it !!
    Cheers, Grover
    (We want less about him and more about the fish )   
  20. Like
    Slipshodman got a reaction from crusty76 in How good is this rain !!   
    Giddee Up
    How good is all of that ....
    Well said , Sydney dam numbers have cracked 70%, I don't care if they leave water restrictions on for a bit though till be get it even higher 
    Glad you figured out your password @aquaholic99.. need all the experience and action on here as we can get 
    HGIT !
  21. Like
    Slipshodman reacted to Grover65k in Giant Pink Gourami – Billabong Ontknoping   
    Night photo
    Looks like the floating islands of Elephant Ears have already got themselves sorted for my Billabong make-over!

  22. Like
    Slipshodman reacted to Grover65k in Giant Pink Gourami – Billabong Ontknoping   
    Inspiration while walking The Dog!
    Brisbanites on the north-side will know that Kedron Brook is a great place to run your dogs. It also a great place for inspiration after the recent flooding rain.
    Kedron Brook in flood - Feb 2020
    As the creek banks are lined with reeds, tall grasses, and Elephant Ear plants; all of this was washed downstream and into great mucky piles of vegetation. Just perfect for GPGs to use as nest building materials!
    This had me thinking (at 1.30am in the morning !) of how I can make the shallow end of the Billabong more nest-friendly for the GPGs.
    All those years of ‘Technical Drawing’ have paid off as you can see in the above diagrams. I seem to remember that my middle-of-the-night idea was to put the large cane baskets back on the edge interspersed with lily plants in pots, and to invent “something” (in grey) to make the pool shallow at this end, but not “something" that would trap a GPG under it. The floating islands could then form a loose barricade at the surface. I’ve learnt from experience, meaning that the plant pots, cane baskets, and anything else will have stainless steel cables ensuring that they don’t end up (down!) 1-2 meters down in the depths.
    Also, I would have to source either long grass or hay (straw, lucerne, or sugar cane) or something like the mucky vegetation from Kedron Brook and give up trying to make the Billabong ­un-green.
    So… any comments / suggestions from the ½ dozen QLDAFers who actually read these posts?
    (once more – he tries to give the giant pink gouramis an environment like their S.E. Asian home)
  23. Like
    Slipshodman reacted to ROAR99 in New wild caught fronnie tank   
    New  5x2.5  setup runing 4ft sump.. wanted something with a bit of character  so picked up this wild caught colony of fronnies,, big 40cm male & 2 females,(otheres are in shed)..  such a beautiful placid male he just cruises around & loves attention .. 

  24. Like
    Slipshodman got a reaction from chazycraig in airline piping for large air pumps.   
    I have one large pump under my house (LP 200 i think) which i run black irrigation tube, (the flex 4mm, same size as normal airline) to 8 different tanks all over my house, and a couple of lines into ponds outside 
    I split it at the pump and have one line fully open to allow any back pressure to get out 
    I use normal airline for the last section that actually goes into the tank though as i don't know if over time the black tube would leech anything into the water 
  25. Like
    Slipshodman got a reaction from chazycraig in airline piping for large air pumps.   
    Only downside is balancing the air pressure across the tanks as the lines to the tanks are different lengths but i just run a airline tap on each one at the tank to get the pressure i want 
    the  open line at the splitter at the pump i have faced back under the pump at the intake to try and help avoid dust getting it clogged up as it is under the house, upside i cant here the pump running at all 
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