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  • Results 1 to 17 of 17

    Thread: New House, New Pond!

    1. #1
      DragonFireSG is offline Senior Member
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      New House, New Pond!

      Lo Folks,

      Been away for a bit. Really busy this year, flying all over the place. Thankfully the pond has been doing well, and the RDF's kept things spick and span with minimal incidents. I've figured out that a lot of my problems have been to do with excessive pressure. Fitting a cheap regulator between my pressure pump and the RDF should hopefully reduce the incidence of further issues.

      My family's recently acquired an empty piece of land just down the road from where our house currently is. It's about 1.5x what we have currently, and we're in the process of planning the construction of a new home on it.

      The fish will be getting a new home too, if things play out well and good. It'll be a while yet before earth is broken, but much of the joy is the process of getting there!

      I'm going to move away from the formal square hole-in-the ground model. The new land is at the base of a 45degree incline, and includes much of the gradient. I'll be using that, and putting in a good sized 10-15ft waterfall in the corner. I'm hoping to increase overall pond volume, including filter to 20000 gal.

      The new filter should be an adventure in the making. I've been looking at installing a sieve and RDF in series to optimize waste removal from the water stream, and now I have the space to actually do it.

      The plan right now is to grossly oversize the sieves, allowing for theoretical max capacity of 40000gph.

      The RDFs will have in comparison maybe only 20000gph of handling capacity (I'm planning on installing two modified BE RDFs), and will be used only for removing things that get past the sieves. They will be run on a timer; If they block before the timer triggers, excess flow will just bypass the units. The same timer will operate jets to purge the sieve screens.

      The idea is that the RDFs will filter only part of the water moving through the system. They can also be completely shut down for servicing, at the relatively low cost of less than crystal clear water, since the relatively maintenance-free sieves are taking the worst of the debris out of the water stream.

      The BE RDF modifications will likely be as follows
      - 200mm (8") single intake, 6" twin outlets

      - Rework of the hydro drive to remove the internal solenoid/float as I plan on triggering the RDFs using a out-of-pond AC solenoid valve managed by a Neptune Apex controller. All the RDFs need is an adequately pressurized water supply to run.

      - Metal drive gear. This is a nice to have, and isn't absolutely essential. It rapidly gets very expensive as relatively exotic metals like duplex/SS316L/Ti need to be used for the corrosive pond environment. I am asking Aquscience if they can look at making something like this standard or an optional upgrade. For them it might just add 200bucks to the unit cost. For us, one-off pieces might cost upwards of $1000.

      For sieves, I have two options.
      1. Ultrasieve XL "LOW' units in parallel, 200 micron sieve upgrade.
      2. A custom made sieve bend

      Leaning to #1 right now as I am not confident of getting the sieve angle right. Waste collection and management is also a bit scary as all I have is paper diagrams that in practice may not work well.


      I'll do a pit drawing in a bit.

    2. #2
      icu2's Avatar
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      Congratulations on the new property and I hope it all works out!
      The system sounds adventurous to say the least and I can't wait to see how you bring it together!

      --Steve
      Find more about Weather in Poulsbo, WA

      "It is far better to be alone, than to be in bad company." --George Washington

    3. #3
      DragonFireSG is offline Senior Member
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      Cheers Steve!

      Some early plans regarding the waterfall. Gonna hide a shower in the back, with output over the rock face being combined with the shower output down on the bottom.
      The shelf will be used for some large rocks (real or fiberglass TBD at the moment) and some plants anchored in the water flow.
      The plants will be in stainless steel baskets and held down using pebbles. That will allow easy removal for cleaning.


    4. #4
      DragonFireSG is offline Senior Member
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      Been going slow due to some issues regarding the build envelope of our property. Land plots in Singapore are generally small, and universally expensive. There are pages upon pages of guidelines to follow to keep neighbourhoods neat, and prevent overzealous neighbours from causing each other issues when maximizing the use of their properties. One of these guidelines sets the maximum height of the property. This is 40ft for my area, up to a max of 2 floors and an attic. Therein lies the trouble. My property sits on and includes the base of a hill, and the access road to the property is actually 20ft up. There were uncertainties as to whether the 40ft allowance starts from the access road, or from the bottom - an issue that wasn't well handled by the published guidelines. We have since sorted that out. The front of our property will go up 40ft from the road surface with any floors under that counted as a basement. The rear will start 40ft from the base of the hill. The result will be that we will have a large sloping roof joining front to back. A relief of sorts as it would have been bad if we'd had to have our driveway - and main door - on the second floor of the house.

      Back to ponding matters...

      I have scrapped the plan to have sieves in front of the RDF. A large mesh tray/leafcatcher will be put in place to keep large solids out of the RDF. The need to dig the filter pit extra deep to cater for the previous model made things untenable as we now have (thanks to regulatory requirements) to have the entire pond in the ground, as opposed to half in/half out. Above-ground ponds need to be 2m away from the property line, whilst fully submerged ponds may abut the property line. This is probably so alterations made by the neighbour on his/her side of the fence don't inadvertently cause a pond wall collapse, which would be bad (tm)

      I will add a third BE RDF to the design for extra peace of mind, and more filter throughput.

      Modifications aplenty will be made, especially to the water feed system. Some are detailed in the picture attached. My intent is for every mechanical component to be easily accessible from the top.
      As is the case with my current pond, the RDF will be operating in a flooded pit to save on real estate. Main change will be that the float based trigger will be replaced by a electronic sensor and DC actuated valve (not unlike what a levelor autofill might use) The waste tray will be set up to be perpetually above water, as I have found the waste piston to be a frequent point of failure. The waste tray will do double duty as the pond overflow, a function which should keep the waste lines flushed well given the constantly high volume of rain we get.

      I will post a more detailed pond schema soon.

      Name:  rdfupgrade2018.PNG
Views: 347
Size:  29.0 KB
      Last edited by DragonFireSG; 4 Weeks Ago at 04:39 AM.

    5. #5
      DragonFireSG is offline Senior Member
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      Early days (tm)

      Redundant moving bed + zakki based shower hidden behind the waterfall.
      3x 6" BDs, 1x 4" BD and 2 skimmers provide waste water return to filter.

      I might add some large airlifts that take water from midwater inlets to make the upper left section flow a bit faster.

      Basic calculations show that this pond should be about 15,000g

      That little rectangular, relatively isolated section on the bottom left is a 1 ft deep "Zen" water garden that is fed by the output of a phoam phractionator hidden behind the waterfall. It will be walled off with rocks to prevent koi from beaching like the whales they are. There will be some potted plants in there. Some smaller, not too proliferate fish like tiger barbs may be put there for bug control. The powers that be save me if the household dowager decides she wants some Ranchu in there.

      Name:  pondplans2018.PNG
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      Last edited by DragonFireSG; 4 Weeks Ago at 05:26 AM.

    6. #6
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      Schema for RDF drive lines and automatic refill.
      Sensor logic schema to follow in a day or two.

      Name:  PondWaterConnections.jpg
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    7. #7
      icu2's Avatar
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      I'll be interested to see how the drive piston modifications work out...

      --Steve
      Find more about Weather in Poulsbo, WA

      "It is far better to be alone, than to be in bad company." --George Washington

    8. #8
      DragonFireSG is offline Senior Member
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      Quote Originally Posted by icu2 View Post
      I'll be interested to see how the drive piston modifications work out...

      I have enough spare parts (especially the drive piston) to put together a rough mockup. Going to do that during my end of year vacation time to see how things go.

      The ASCO 8316 is an interesting but somewhat expensive piece of kit. I was talking to a F&B processes engineer the other day, and he suggested this part for operating what essentially is a single throw actuator (the drive piston). When off, the piston is vented to the outside (in this case to the pond) - which is exactly what we need for fast retraction, and less need to mess with somewhat icky modified check valves.

      Edit: Quite a few pieces of the 8316 on Ebay. I wonder if 1/2" piping will suffice considering that the water is being supplied at relatively high pressure. Any thoughts? I need to pick up a used piece for testing em paper plans.
      Last edited by DragonFireSG; 4 Weeks Ago at 06:48 AM.

    9. #9
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      Here is a variation on the plumbing on the RDF to allow the use of both ports for water release. I expect retraction to be really quite snappy with this setup. Gotta test it out tho to see if the extra elbow grease is worth the effort.

      Name:  RDFTopology.PNG
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    10. #10
      jasonir129 is online now Senior Member
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      Quote Originally Posted by DragonFireSG View Post
      Here is a variation on the plumbing on the RDF to allow the use of both ports for water release. I expect retraction to be really quite snappy with this setup. Gotta test it out tho to see if the extra elbow grease is worth the effort.

      Name:  RDFTopology.PNG
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      Very cool plans happening. Really excited to see how this pans out. I'm also thinking about some fun tech mods for my BE and was under the impression that the piston reset was really just a function of the spring inside the piston discharging to push the water out. Are you saying that you can essentially pull the water out and force a faster retraction?

      Sent from my SM-G950U using Tapatalk

    11. #11
      DragonFireSG is offline Senior Member
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      The main factor affecting how fast the piston reset is the small water outlet.

      There are 2 ports on the first revision drive piston - the one designated for water egress is 5mm ID (bore of the PU hose), the one designated for ingress is limited by the ball valve controlling how fast the piston operates.
      The egress port has a cheap disk type check valve on it to prevent water from entering that way when the system is pressurized. This isn't the most reliable thing. Furthermore, the only place the water can exit the system is via the highly restrictive spray bar ports.

      Current revision units have a larger bore exit port (10mm I think. Need to break out my calipers.) A modified, spring loaded large bore inline check valve opens the drive line (piping after the solenoid) into the clean water side of the RDF when the system isn't under pressure.
      This together with the large bore exit port allows the rapid discharge of piston contents when the solenoid valve is shut. Previously, the water would have to slow drip out of the highly restrictive spray bar ports.

      My planned changes will use a Neptune Apex contolled 3/2 solenoid to replace the modified check valve and modified float actuated valve. When the system is deactivated, the water in the piston will simply flow out the way it came in, and be shunted into a pipe leading back to the pond. All the solenoids and electronics will be outside the filter area - probably in a control cabinet so everything is roughly in one place, and protected from the elements.

    12. #12
      DragonFireSG is offline Senior Member
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      Changing the control schema a bit to not use the 3/2 solenoids. Turns out they are made of leaded brass. I will be replacing each with a pair of 8212 series 2/2 solenoids made of composite, and drinking water certified.

      One will be NO and the other will be NC. NC controls the feed of pressurized water, and NO lets the line drain after the system is de-energized. Cost wise, I might actually save some money as the composite 2/2 solenoid valves are cheaper than the 3/2 brass valves. The need for more check valves may offset gains - but check valves are generally cheap.

    13. #13
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      New drawings.

      Name:  pondplans2018.1.PNG
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    14. #14
      jasonir129 is online now Senior Member
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      Very cool, do you know if there's a way to purchase the newer piston in the US? It would be cool to get one, use that and keep the old version I have as a backup.

      Have you had issues with the magnetic solenoid for triggering with the float? I know you're getting rid of the float to control with your neptune so that needs to go but for the rest of us has it had any issues for you current stock system?

    15. #15
      kimini is online now Senior Member
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      Curious if you've figured out the expected electrical costs.

    16. #16
      DragonFireSG is offline Senior Member
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      On the new drive piston:

      You could try contacting the Chinese manufacturer. I figure the main difficulty woukd be payment. It is likely you would need to do an international bank transfer. Changing the drive piston will require you to rebuild the plumbing system a little as the check valve setup is quite different. I am still using my stock piston for that reason.

      The float system IMO is a robust one. No issues with it so far. My main gripe with it is that it is fully reliant on the water level of your system, and needs a LOT of tweaking to get right.

    17. #17
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      Quote Originally Posted by kimini View Post
      Curious if you've figured out the expected electrical costs.
      Chillers aside (don't want to think about that - not even sure I will put those in)
      Pumps will run 1kW - 1.5kW total
      Aeration probably about 250W
      UVs are unclear. Probably 200W

      I have plans to install a 20kWp solar system that should completely offset power usage for a good number of hours daily.
      Whether or not I run chillers is quite contingent on whether that solar system is put in - they could run 6kW for a pond this size.

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