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    Thread: Rotating Drum Filter For all.

    1. #1
      LynxDK is offline Junior Member
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      Rotating Drum Filter For all.

      Hey all.

      This is my first post on this forum, but i thought it was time for me to share an idea i had, to hear what you guys are thinking.

      im having a 55000 Liter Concrete Pond with Koi's, sturgeon and some other fish.

      from the beginning i wanted to build my own filter, and was very impressed with the Nexus systems. which resulted in me making 2 static kaldnes filters from 2x200 liters barrels i had.

      the pond have been running with those for 2 year without any problems accually, only thing that annoyed me was the amount of water going to waste in every cleaning. And if i wanted my pond nice a clear, i needed to clean those drum at least every second day.

      After the first year i started to look for something else, and i ofcourse got amazed by the Drum Filters.

      When i made my Filter i made sure to make room for any future testing of other filters.
      Right now my filter looks like this:

      Pond -> 1000 Liter Vortex -> 2x200 Liter Static Kaldnes Filters -> Empty 1000 Liter pallets Tank -> 1000 Liter Moving Kaldnes Bed Pallet Tank -> 1000 Liter Pallet Tank with UV Light -> 1000 Liter Pallet Tank with 20000 Liter Pump.

      So yes, the entire filter seems like Overkill for my pond, but my idea was that i wanted to play a little with different filtrations and i wanted enough space for that. And all this is put beside the Pond in a shed "basement" at the same level as the Pond, so i dont have to lift the water.

      Then Last year i started a company with my friend,, which mean that we suddenly had alot of machines in our shop, CNC Mill, 3D printer & Laser Cutter, and that gave me the possebility to make my own Drum Filter.
      So i began to draw the filter, and my first idea was to make it as small as possible, and i also didnt want the filter to be a "unit" by itself, i wanted it to be lowered down into a Pallet Tank, without a watertight outer casing, but simply just being a part of a allready existing filter.

      However not long in the design i figured, why not make it so it would be easy to manufactor the parts, and design it in a way, so that other people than me would be able to maybe purchase the parts, and assemble it easily. In a way to make it possible for everyone to get a cheap Rotating Drum Filter.

      I got some parts designed, Machined and assembled, However, a growing success with our newly started company, made the project stop for a while, and it went on the shelf.

      Then this year, we had an very unusual start on the summer, as the temperature went from 6 degrees Celcius to 26-28 Degrees Celcius over 3 days. and the the temperature stayed that way with Heavy Sun and no Rain for a little over a month.
      That meant that my pond exploded with Seeweed, which plugged static filters, and never gave the biofilter a chance to get started.
      Every time i cleared the filter from weed, 10 minutes went by and it stopped again, meaning the pump was running dry, and i had to stop it. And now it became very clear to me, i had to resume my RDF Filter project, or my pond would end up as algae soup.

      Okay so now i told you a little about the setup and why i wanted a Drum Filter, now to the fun stuff :)

      As mentioned before, i wanted the filter to be a unit that should be lowered down into my Pallet Tank, it dont have to be a pallet tank, but some sort of square or round tank, why i wanted that was because many people like me have tried building their own filter, and have used such a tank for the project.

      I also wanted the filter to be made from nice and durable materials, alltho still being cheap.
      The result was using PEHD for each side of the Drums, and 3D printed ribs to connect them.
      And before any of you say that 3D print dosnt work for that, i will just say that i have been testing the PLA i use for printing, 2 Years outside, in sun and cold, underwater in my Pond, all through winter frozen up, and i tell you, its very VERY Durable. And also very hard to break.

      Ontop of this stainless steel is installed, with 3D printed Gears on the side, which gets turned by a Stepper Motor controlled from an arduino board.

      This filter is not very big, it supports 1x 110mm ingoing pipe, and 1x110mm outgoing Waste pipe.

      So here is a couple of pictures, and i want to remind you, that what you see is a prototype, which mean that the drum is build with the PEHD Material, with 3D printed parts and stainless Mesh. Where the frame holding it, is made from cheap Acrylic i had in store, simply because i wanted to test the positions of things, before i make the final assembly.

      This is the drum:
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      And this is the setup before i install the Spray Bar and motor:
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      And this is what the filter will roughly look like when its all done and tested:
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      I installed it in my pond with 300 Micron mesh, to be sure that the flow wasnt too little that it would not run properly. And it have been running with that for the past 14 days, and wow is that a relief.

      Alltho it runs on a timer right now, i tell you, it just removes all the waste, and algae without any problem.
      So today i installed a 125 Micron mesh to see how that would go... remember it only runs on a single 110mm Pipe, and that just made everything better.

      So next is to try 70 Micron Mesh, and installing some good water level sensors.

      When i began this project, the prices on those RDF's where redicules, however those prices have been going down, and small rdf's aint that expensive anymore, However the bigger ones are still pretty expensive.

      But now i want to ask you guys, would this be of any interest to any of you.

      When its all fully tested and running flawlessly, i was thinking about offering all these parts, machines and printed, complete with screws and hardware, and the Motors and controllers to run it. So all you have to do is assemble, and install into an existing tank and then you have a RDF.

      I dont have a clue about the price on this thing yet, so it might not even be cheaper than buying one of those small rdf's.... but maybe its way cheaper...
      I ask the question because if this where of any interest, then i would think a little bit differently when i make the final tests and changes.

      For those of you thinking... This is too small, a Much bigger version will come after this one, with being around 600mm in diameter, it will be twise the Diameter, and will be able to support many more 110mm Pipes:

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      But i need to test and finish this small one first, as when thats done, it will be fairly fast and simple to make the bigger one.

      Let me know what you guys think, and dont hesitate to ask question.
      However dont expect this to be finished right away... i want to test it and make the right changes before i will offer it to the public.

      Also, more pictuers of the Rough installation to be pond will follow... it aint pretty "yet" but its working :)

      Best Regards.
      LynxDK

    2. #2
      rcmike is offline Supporting Member
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      Very nice! On the 3D printed parts. Have you ever thought of using PETG? I find it stronger and it's supposed to last longer in the elements than PLA.



    3. #3
      LynxDK is offline Junior Member
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      No i havent accually.... but that might be worth looking into for the final product thx.

    4. #4
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      Welcome and thanks for joining Koiphen!

      Good luck with the project and enjoy the forum!
      --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

    5. #5
      rcmike is offline Supporting Member
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      Quote Originally Posted by LynxDK View Post
      No i havent accually.... but that might be worth looking into for the final product thx.
      No problem. It is harder to get the settings right for PETG but once you do it prints great. Good luck on your filter. It looks like you're off to a great start.



    6. #6
      wingrider is offline Supporting Member
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      I'm interested.

    7. #7
      LynxDK is offline Junior Member
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      Here is a couple of quick pictures of the drum installed in the pallet tank.

      It was installed in a very very dirty tank, and i didnt do any cleaning whatsoever, which is why it looks pretty dirty after running 14 days. however the drum itself looks fine as new, this is the new 125 micron screen installed, but the 300 micron looked just as fine.

      I will clean the filter tanks one of these days so i can pictuere the water before and after the drum.

      One of the adjustments i have to do it raise the spray bar, its missing 10mm of the screen in the middle, and i dont want to install 3 spray heads, as that will just result in more water usage, so by raising them 5-10mm it should solve that problem.

      and then im designing a new connection entry for the waste tray, so that you will be able to get your hand into the waste tray, and remove string algae if needed.

      Also in the long run, a protection screen will be needed for the gear, so you cant get your fingers stuck if it starts running, i will take better pictures of the gearing later on.

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      Oh yea, and the spray bar just runs off the tap water, through a electric valve which is controlled by the arduino.
      However, a pump could be used, and eventually i will problaly make a "mini" sieve, with a 30 micron screen, which will sort out the waste from the waste water, and then pump the clean water back into the pond, so you reuse the water.

    8. #8
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      We have lots of DIY'ers on this site, so if you are able to design and produce a dependable RDF at low cost, you will have lots of interest ! The key word is dependable, as many have tried building their own RDF, but it seems they all have failure points at some time. Either the electronics fail, or pump seals/bearings go, or some other technical issue comes up that render the RDF incapacitated. The 24 x 7 use is tough on electronics and parts, and I don't think anyone has figured out the best setup yet. The new commercial Red Label unit has a lot of promise , and is just being sold now in the US, so a lot of people are following the results of the early adopters.

    9. #9
      LynxDK is offline Junior Member
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      Quote Originally Posted by stevek View Post
      We have lots of DIY'ers on this site, so if you are able to design and produce a dependable RDF at low cost, you will have lots of interest ! The key word is dependable, as many have tried building their own RDF, but it seems they all have failure points at some time. Either the electronics fail, or pump seals/bearings go, or some other technical issue comes up that render the RDF incapacitated. The 24 x 7 use is tough on electronics and parts, and I don't think anyone has figured out the best setup yet. The new commercial Red Label unit has a lot of promise , and is just being sold now in the US, so a lot of people are following the results of the early adopters.
      If this works out, it would be a complete kit, that the buyer should assemble themself.

      And you say it needs to be dependable, and thats exactly why i will test the unit myself to be sure things work out. And as i said, its not even for sure that i can make it cheap enough to be interesting.
      However, it will be a module build, which means that if something should break, it can be replaced at a real low cost, and i will of course keep supplying the parts. But as i said, i will only use high end materials to ensure high durability.... i even dropped the drum from 1,5 meters down onto the concrete floor, the PEHD disc got a little scratch, nothing happend to the 3D print, alltho that was all that kept it together... and the drum weighs about 5 kilos....

      The Electronics is the big question, since its positioned outside in all kind of weather, the good thing is tho, that again, its Very Very cheap.. so if you have a unit running for a year or 2, and the Arduino Break, the cost for a new one is below 10 Pounds. So the key thing here is that every single part for this RDF is low cost...

      A pump i wont be providing, but i will make ready for activating a pump in the controller unit.... also want to add automatic pond refill in the box, to ensure that the pond level wont get too low for the RDF.

      And also, as this is a kit, it will be faily simple to ship World Wide.

      Thank you for your input, i hope for more to share their opinion and ideas, as well as critique on the design and project, dont hold back

    10. #10
      BWG is offline Senior Member
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      A DIY reasonable cost kit that also ships for a much lower cost would be very attractive. Maybe a simple lower cost timer control as standard and a more advanced one with bells and whistles as an option.

      For mass production CNC router/mill or waterjet cut plastic parts are more cost effective (and most likely more consistent strength) than 3D printing at this time. Redesign of some of the parts would be needed.

    11. #11
      LynxDK is offline Junior Member
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      Quote Originally Posted by BWG View Post
      A DIY reasonable cost kit that also ships for a much lower cost would be very attractive. Maybe a simple lower cost timer control as standard and a more advanced one with bells and whistles as an option.

      For mass production CNC router/mill or waterjet cut plastic parts are more cost effective (and most likely more consistent strength) than 3D printing at this time. Redesign of some of the parts would be needed.
      A timer is only for my tests, it's not a good idea because if you set the timer too high and there is a lot of crap, then the water level can raise above the waste tray, and you will loose unnessesary water.

      The difference between a timer and a water level sensor isn't much, around 10 pounds, I'm looking into using an IR sensor for water level sensor, so you don't have a float which can get stuck.

      About the price on mass production, that really depends on how big a scale you are talking about.
      I'm using high end printers for all my productions, and the good thing about prints is, I don't use any of my time on the parts, I press print, and I can leave it, and when it's done, the parts go straight from the printer into the shipping box, so that makes it the cheapest way for me to produce parts as these.

      Now the drum filter have been running for 2 days with the 125 micron screen, and the visibility in my pond have gone from 30cm to 2 meters.... so it's definately working.

      If this goes like planned, I'm thinking about have a couple of "testers" it's allways good to have other people get hands on and try the stuff, to get possible problems spotted so they can get fixed.
      Those testers will only have to pay for the materials, all the machining and programming/ wiring will be on me. But I have to get better version finished before I will be ready for that.

    12. #12
      BWG is offline Senior Member
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      Best of luck in your endeavor. If your final design can flow 25 m3 hour or greater I would be interested.

    13. #13
      LynxDK is offline Junior Member
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      Quote Originally Posted by BWG View Post
      Best of luck in your endeavor. If your final design can flow 25 m3 hour or greater I would be interested.
      Thank you

      As this is a modular build, it can be modified to suit all needs, the Diameter will obviously have to be bigger to support more inlets, and if the flow wont be enough trough the screen, then i can just add another section, so you get twice the width of the drum, and double the flow. a bigger drum might need a bigger motor though, but other than that is basically just scaled up using the same parts.

      I started with this small 1x110mm inlet version to see if anything needed to be changed, and so i could learn a little. However this just works like a charm. as mentioned im printing an open tray, so that i can get my hand inside the waste tray, and remove sticks and string algae.

      I might need a flow friend to test the flow through the filter, otherwise it will be hard for me to know 100%

      But now that i know that this works, im problaly going to make a bigger one as version 2, which will support 3x110mm inlets, this way i can connect my skimmer too. that one will have twice the amount of surface than this one... because i will be able to lower it further down into the water.

    14. #14
      rcmike is offline Supporting Member
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      I might possibly be interested in testing a small one for a quarantine setup. It wouldn't need such huge inlets and outlets but around that size probably. Does it have to be put inside of a tank though? Could it be used as a stand alone unit?



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      wingrider is offline Supporting Member
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      What would the smallest build look like for those with smaller ponds- at/under 3000g.

    16. #16
      LynxDK is offline Junior Member
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      Quote Originally Posted by rcmike View Post
      I might possibly be interested in testing a small one for a quarantine setup. It wouldn't need such huge inlets and outlets but around that size probably. Does it have to be put inside of a tank though? Could it be used as a stand alone unit?
      The inlets can be printed to whatever size you would need, and yea, it have to be put inside of a tank, thats because that makes it possible for me to ship it easy, also you dont have to "glue" or "weld" anything together to get a watertight assembly. However it shouldnt be too hard to find a suitable tank you you to put it in, drill holes and connects the pipes to that, and then connect the RDF inside that tank, that way it would work as a stand alone unit... i can get you approximated size for the rdf when i get home.


      Quote Originally Posted by wingrider View Post
      What would the smallest build look like for those with smaller ponds- at/under 3000g.
      The smallest would be this one, that supports as much flow as you can get thought that 110mm Pipe in gravity setup.
      at 125 micron screen, im pumping around 10000 liters through this thing without any problems, i have ordered the 70 micron screens to see how that goes, but that would be sufficient for smaller ponds i believe.
      and again, i can print smaller connections for the intake, and also more than one if they can fit

    17. #17
      LynxDK is offline Junior Member
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      The drum filter as it is now have these dimensions:

      Height: 500mm
      Width: 420mm
      Depth: 400mm including motor and inlet and waste tray flanges. When i make an open Waste tray it will be around 100-150mm more in depth.

      Then you need to add the room for connecting those to existing pipes

      This is the smallest model, as i make bigger models, the will stay the same in Depth, but Width and Heigh will go up.

    18. #18
      LynxDK is offline Junior Member
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      a couple more pictures, keep in mind its a test setup.... no finish whatsoever.

      The Gearing.
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      The Motor.
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      The top connection is the waste tray, and the lower is the inlet.

      and here is the valve opening for the water to the spray bar

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    19. #19
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      I have roughly a 2000 gallon pond/tank for my GH that I am trying to find a way to introduce RDF into the loop.

      I would be VERY interested in helping you put it through its paces b/c I am trying to find an effective way to capture solids so I can further break them down to inject downstream to feed my growbeds. Not only would this allow you to serve the Koi ponds, but also expand into the world of aquaponics.

      I am looking at a larger unit (commercial) to purchase for my soon to be koi pond, as well as a smaller unit, but would love to be able to incorporate. It would be married with my existing system and not the sole means to remove debris.

      reasonable costs and shipping expected for your time.....

    20. #20
      LynxDK is offline Junior Member
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      Quote Originally Posted by BroHay View Post
      I have roughly a 2000 gallon pond/tank for my GH that I am trying to find a way to introduce RDF into the loop.

      I would be VERY interested in helping you put it through its paces b/c I am trying to find an effective way to capture solids so I can further break them down to inject downstream to feed my growbeds. Not only would this allow you to serve the Koi ponds, but also expand into the world of aquaponics.

      I am looking at a larger unit (commercial) to purchase for my soon to be koi pond, as well as a smaller unit, but would love to be able to incorporate. It would be married with my existing system and not the sole means to remove debris.

      reasonable costs and shipping expected for your time.....
      Yea, hit me an email on info@lynx.dk and well figure it out

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