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    Thread: Ben's Pond, take 1 and redo.

    1. #1
      mplskoi is offline Supporting Member
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      Ben's Pond, take 1 and redo.

      Greetings all,
      I have been meaning to post my pond for some time. Mostly done now, and when I was working I was always to focused on the job to pause and take a picture. The first pics are of my first version. 1500 gallons, all in ground, DIY skimmer, submersible pump, no BD. A Laguna pressure filter with UV and a nonconventional SG did the dirty work. I also ran water through planters for additional "bog style" filtration. Several biocensus pots (anoxic filtration) also sat in these planters.





      my first fish collection:


      I am able to wrap the pergola up like a green house, using clear plastic like construction workers do I can give my pond some winter protection. Also I lay about 3.5 inches of insulation right on the top cap of the wall. Fish have wintered outside with pretty low mortality rates. (1 in 2 years). A little ice builds up, but not much.

    2. #2
      mplskoi is offline Supporting Member
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      So over this last winter I thought through a lot of possible changes that I might make. I really love the space where the pond sits, and the surface area that it consumes. It sits right off a patio where I grill and my family eats a lot of meals. Also right near my back bedroom door- I sit on that split maple log bench a lot late at night. Enjoying the quiet of a big city sitting by fish and moving water.
      But I wanted to have top shelf fish and top shelf fish health, and top shelf water quality. I really felt the need to get above 2000 gallons, and no one has ever regretted putting in a BD. So despite all of the ideas of how to get around having a BD I decided to bite the bullet (or rather handle of a well worn shovel) and put in a BD. My pond is surrounded by patio area (one side) yard (one side) and 2 foot high retaining walls (two sides). I decided to build my pond two feet higher, snake the BD line under a retaining wall and gravity flow to a 275 gallon tote that would sit behind the wall.
      SO I pulled my fish, sold and gave away most of them and started rebuilding.

      Old pit with new BD plumbed in. I have pure sand subsoil, so I never felt the need for concrete. My below grade is 2 x 12 green treated lumber. Had a epdm liner with folds in first version.


      ANd here is a view of where the tote will go. Note 3 inch BD line coming up, and two aeration lines. One for BD, and one to run an airlift that I put in a long sweep 90 where my water turns from horizontal to vertical flow. With a burst of air I can purge my BD line. Amazing how much extra will come out in one of these purges.

      Last edited by mplskoi; 12-21-2014 at 03:15 PM.

    3. #3
      mplskoi is offline Supporting Member
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      Ok, so here we are after the rebuild. I used 2 x 4 green treated lumber and framed another two feet of height. I used two layers (of 2 x 4 )where I attached it to the top of the 2 x 12 in ground wood. I also used two layers on the top cap. I over lapped the corners sill boards to keep the corners from blowing out. Sorry no pics on the framing. Like I say, when I get rolling on a project I forget about taking pics. I lined the inside of the framing with green treated 1/2 inch plywood, layer 3/4 inch pink board insulation over the entire interior and dropped a custom made drop in liner. The walls are full of 3.5 inches of insulation and the exterior above grade is sided with concrete backer board. Backerboard is skim coated with concrete and painted. Top cap is 2 x 8 rough sawn cedar. One board wide on three sides, but two boards wide on the far end where my SG/waterfall planter sits. I put a 24 x 48 inch piece of 3/8ths acrylic window in. It overlaps on all 4 edges up against two 2 x 4 edges. Making the window only 18 x 42. I predrilled holes every 2.5 inches about 2 inches in from the edge of glass. I then put two big wide beads of 5200 sealant on acrylic and slapped it into place. As I set the screws (with oversize pan head) I could see the 5200 get flattened out into a full three inch wide gasket all of the way around the window.
      This pic from the patio end of things. You can see a DIY skimmer box hanging off the right hand side of the pond. Also back on the right, behind the ferns a Birdman style blue barrel SG filter. Not a true Birdman though, some mods that I will show later.



      Window view:


      This is where I relax (and am right now), on the log bench.
      Last edited by mplskoi; 07-24-2014 at 11:56 PM.

    4. #4
      mplskoi is offline Supporting Member
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      One of my filters. Pretty pleased with it, but gonna make another one even better. (Hopefully have Zac P custom build it). This filter has a fine enough mesh at the bottom that while I call it a Sand AND GRAVEL, there is not gravel. Chicken grit only. Coarser granite in the first layer, finer oyster shells on top.
      Water up flows through grit, then spills down back trough over cermedia, falls into raceway and heads towards weir waterfall.


      Inside:

      And with stainless steel flour milling sieve in place: Note in above photo that I have water come in through a manifold, you will see two manifolds, one for air, one for water. I like the concept of better distribution of water with manifold.

      In above pic you can see where water can overflow out a 3 inch opening. It flows into the box seen below, which is full of cermedia.

      The water then flows underneath and out:

      That silver thing is a sheet of aluminum that I forged into a nice weir.

    5. #5
      mbrian1226's Avatar
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      Very nice! I like the window.
      Brian



      Click for Springfield, Oregon Forecast

    6. #6
      birdman's Avatar
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      Very nice, thanks for sharing.

    7. #7
      icu2's Avatar
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      Great job!
      --Steve
      Find more about Weather in Poulsbo, WA

      "I know what I have to do now. I got to keep breathing. Because tomorrow the sun will rise.
      Who knows what the tide could bring." --Tom Hanks in Cast Away

    8. #8
      z_zk_z is offline Member
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      Can you please talk (post) more about how you made the window?

      I put a 24 x 48 inch piece of 3/8ths acrylic window in. It overlaps on all 4 edges up against two 2 x 4 edges. Making the window only 18 x 42. I predrilled holes every 2.5 inches about 2 inches in from the edge of glass. I then put two big wide beads of 5200 sealant on acrylic and slapped it into place. As I set the screws (with oversize pan head) I could see the 5200 get flattened out into a full three inch wide gasket all of the way around the window.

      Can you please talk (post) more about how you made the window? For example:
      1) Is the thickness of the acrylic window 3/8 inch (0.375”)?
      2) Are you using a single sheet or multiple sheets?
      3) How did you connect the pond liner to the acrylic window (is the liner sandwiched between two layers of acrylic sheets or did you cut an acrylic strip?
      4) What size bolts and nuts and washers are you using?
      5) How far is the top-of-the-window below the ponds water level?
      6) Where did you purchase the acrylic sheet and its price?
      Thanks in advance for your time…

    9. #9
      mplskoi is offline Supporting Member
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      zk-
      I used 3/8 inch (.0375) acrylic. Single layer. I called a large plastic sheet supply warehouse. They provide materials to all sorts of industries and have engineers on staff to help make recommendations. I was going to use polycarbonite, but the guy said that for my use 1/4 inch acrylic would be fine. I upgraded to 3/8 just in case. One downside of acrylic is that you have to be super careful to not scratch it, though I have been told the same applies to polycarb. I am totally satisfied with the strength of the window. My supplier says it will not yellow and has more impact resistance than almost anything else. Around 45$

      I used GRK brand 1.5 inch "cabinet screws" to attach. Not sure why they call them cabinet screws, but the have a big wide pan head, so no need for washers. They are rated for use outdoors, and have a nice smooth head that shouldn't scratch a fish. I believe this is the same screw that Karl (Koi Valley) uses for his window building in indoor pools.

      If I could have taken a pic…. But instead try picture this in your head- if you were to cut my wall in half and look down on it and see a cross section- you would see on the exterior 1/2 concrete backer board, then, moving inward towards the water, you would see 2 x 4's on edge, then a layer of plywood, then 3/4 inch of pink board insulation, then a drop in liner. Except, around the window, because I wanted to sandwich the liner between the acrylic and something very sturdy, I cut the insulation back three inches, up, down, and to each side. So looking down right at the spot of the window, you would see a pair of 2 x 4's sitting side by side, with plywood, then another 3/4 inch thick piece of wood, 3 inches wide, attached firmly to the 2 x 4's. Then liner, then 5200, then acrylic. So the acrylic pushes up against 5200, which pushes up against the liner, which pushes up against very firm and sturdy wood framing.
      As I noted earlier, I put screws every 2.5 inches around the perimeter, about 2 inches in from the outside edge. I got all of the screws just barely started (PREDRILL!), then put two big lines of 5200 on the acrylic, one just inside the line of screws and one just outside of the line of screws. Then with two helpers to steady the glass, I started driving the screws in. I got the corners in place then started working y way around tightening lightly, then a little tighter and tighter. As I put the final tightening turns in, I could see that the two beads of 5200 spread out and made a three inch wide gasket the full perimeter of the window. So I can think of no way that that seal could fail. I had drops of 5200 ooze out under the pan heads of every screw, so as long as the 5200 doesn't fail, the window should be tight.

      The window is at the highest point possible. Some of the very top of it can be seen from inside the pond.

      One mistake that I made- I should have beveled the edge of the glass where the fish could scrape themselves. A few of my fish had minor scrapes, so I drained the pond down two feet, jumped in and used hand planers to bevel the edges after the fact. COuld have done it much more perfectly/effectively beforehand.

      I hope that description of the window install makes sense.

    10. #10
      rayjay's Avatar
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      Very nice !! Looks like your planter SG box is made out of plywood, what are you using to coat the plywood?

    11. #11
      mplskoi is offline Supporting Member
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      Rayjay,
      Yes, my SG planter is made of plywood and 2 x 4's and 1 x 2's that I mitered and edged to give them a more "dimensional" and trim like appearance. I used LOTS of screws, and predrilled to avoid splitting. I coated the wood in a pretty standard fiberglass gel coat available at HD and other big box outlets. I then brushed on a thin patching style concrete slurry. Then painted it with an all weather product.
      It turns out I must have a very minor leak in my fiberglass gel coat. I can tell this due to some swelling and cracking of paint, from water coming from behind the paint. I will use this unit til fall, then let it dry over winter inside my house. Before spring I will repaint the interior with an EPDM/paint on rubber product.
      I really got the look that I wanted from the front and sides of the unit, just hope that I can seal it up to become a long term component in my system.

    12. #12
      rayjay's Avatar
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      Yea, it looks great! Thanks for the info.............

    13. #13
      KoiKid55 is offline Senior Member
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      m
      Last edited by KoiKid55; 10-03-2014 at 11:02 AM.
      Well I messed that one up
      BULKHEAD Y U NO WORK



      Music Makes Life Kenny Chesney Zac Brow Skrilex Enimem


    14. #14
      mplskoi is offline Supporting Member
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    15. #15
      KoiKid55 is offline Senior Member
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      Nope I see what I did only me lol
      Last edited by KoiKid55; 10-03-2014 at 11:03 AM.
      Well I messed that one up
      BULKHEAD Y U NO WORK



      Music Makes Life Kenny Chesney Zac Brow Skrilex Enimem


    16. #16
      mplskoi is offline Supporting Member
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      Ben's version of an sieve driven by an airlift. 3 inch BD line, 45 watts of air pushing 1500-2000 gph over a 125 micron stainless steel sieve from a wheat milling plant:

      Another shot of my sieve on outdoor pond:




      Ben's version of an airlift:

      Screen like this is wedged into airlift to diffuse bubbles:



      This another DIY sieve that gravity flows out of my indoor winter tank. Around 800 gph gravity flows from retro BD into a 55 gallon barrel. Barrel has settlement chamber features also, and I often keep bioballs in there too. Submersible hangs in this barrel and pumps to SG then to cermedia shower.
      Last edited by mplskoi; 12-25-2016 at 05:26 PM.

    17. #17
      vipertom1970 is offline Senior Member
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      Cool design !!!

    18. #18
      mplskoi is offline Supporting Member
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      Thanks vipertom1970, these units have been working pretty good for me. They are not as easy to clean as the commercial units, and they have as a downside that you have to keep the pond water level pretty stable. At least in the airlift mode. But they do catch a lot of stuff. Mulm, algae, and any twigs or leaves that make it to the BD. And because I can get this stuff for free, the price is right.
      The sieve for my outdoor pond usually lifts only about 1-2 inches. I get at least 2000 gph for 45 watts of power when it is set just right. Of course lifting it more very quickly lowers the gph.
      In this system I go BD>sieve>MB of K1>SG>gravity back to pond.

      Anyone checking out the airlift- I use a hole saw blade to cut from a scrap of the same sieve material (careful- use a drill press and clamp material well) that will fit just inside the diameter of the T sweep fitting. In the picture above you are seeing a 2 inch line, where the 1/2 inch airline plumbs into the bottom and pushes air in the air has to go through this sieve material. This sieve material cut into the perfect size circle is wedged up in there before the fitting is glued into place. It seems the magic to efficient airlifts is bubbles not too big nor too small. The sieve that I use gives me a bubble size that works well.
      If this airlift goes in where you need to put in a 90 degree bend anyhow you can put it in for just a few dollars more. Then if you ever need to do a clean out of a line you can.
      The airlift running my BD has been in operation for two years and has been 100% trouble free.

      As many of you know I love to tinker and experiment, it is half of the fun of this hobby. My sieve and DIY airlift are two experiments that have been very successful for me.

    19. #19
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    20. #20
      Lewdis is offline Junior Member
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      Wow.. So beautiful. How large are the fish?

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