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    Thread: DIY Bead Filter

    1. #1
      birdman's Avatar
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      DIY Bead Filter

      A while back there was three good threads on DIY low pressure bead filters. All three were lost with the computer crash. They had a lot of good ideas and thoughts about different media to use for beads. I am going to re-do mine. Hopefully Luke and Garrett will do the same.
      Garrett came up with the origional concept, to build a low pressure bead filter for polishing water that could be made from a 55 gal barrel. The key to the low back pressure is using 4" well screen pipe with 40 thousands slots in them. This 4" well screen pipe in and out will flow large amounts of water with out creating very much back pressure. Thus being able to use a barrell. Luke with Garret's help made the prototype and it worked well. So well I decided to make one also.
      Instead of a barrel I am using one of the well pressure tanks I got for free. Basicly you use a 4" well screen pipe in the bottom for flow in from the pump, and a 4" well screen pipe at the top for flow out to the pond. Use floating beads. The flow out the top is split in two, one going to the pond, the other going to waste. You use a blower for stiring up the beads when flushing and a vent at the top when flushing.
      For flushing divert the flow from the pond to waste, open the vent, and turn on the blower. The blower will dislodge all the dirt and it will flow to waste. The open vent prevents the barrell from building up to much back pressure.

    2. #2
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      using the 3 foot high by 2 foot wide fiberglass Tank I had I 1st drilled a 5" hole in the bottom right for the inlet and a 5" hole in the top left for the outlet. These holes will accomidat the 4" uniseals for the 4" inlet and outlet piping. The air from my 2 HP blower will come in the bottom. I am using a 2" bulkhead fitting with a screen. My tank does not have a lid so everything I do has to be done in the right order, through the 5" holes. Last picture is the 2" bulkhead and screen in the bottom for the blower inlet.
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    3. #3
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      The vent coming out the top has to have a screen to prevent the beads from coming out when you open the vent. I used a short piece of the 4" well screen pipe for this. With a male adapter on the top and a cap on the bottom. Last picture is looking through the top 5" hole at the well screen pipe installed.
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    4. #4
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      The next thing I did was make the two 4" well screen pipes for the water in and out. I ordered my 4" well screen pipe from AES. I cut them to the correct length, glued a shortened cap on one end and a shortened coupling on the other. I then made a short piece of 4" pipe belved on one end to put through the uniseal. I put the inlet well screen pipe in the bead filter through the 5" hole and inserted the 4" pipe through the uniseal and into the coupling on the well screen pipe inside the bead filter.
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    5. #5
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      Once I had the inlet well screen pipe installed I made my base and installed the filter, and plumbed my pump up to it. 1st and 2nd pictures. Also when plumbing the blower I put a "T" in the 2" line so I have a drain from the bottom to waste. You can see the knife valve for that, I haven't finished plumbing it to the main drain line yet, to darn cold.

      Next picture shows the 2 HP blower installed. I don't remenber where I got it, Bill from Roseburg, OR. sent me the link but it was only $120 or so. I put a 2" spring check in the line to keep water from backing into the blower.

      The last picture is the alum. tray I used to fill the filter with the beads. A friend in CA. sent me 7 cubic feet of beads to use. Just the right amount to fill the filter half full.

      That's it for now. Next is installing the outlet well screen pipe and then the discharge piping.
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    6. #6
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      Here are a couple of pictures of the outlet well screen installed. I filled the filter with water so the beads would float just high enough to hold the well screen pipe in alignment with the hole. Then I installed the short 4" pipe through the uniseal and into the well screen coupling.
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    7. #7
      Koi-Toys is offline Senior Member
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      I have a some of your's and Luke's threads saved in pdf format if that will help.

      ~Raymond.

    8. #8
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      Looking good.

      My tank is much more squatty. Had to go a different route. I did get the last valve today and it's in the "will it hold water test".

      I'll re-start a thread soon. If it's nice enough tomorrow I may flow some water through it without beads and get some numbers.

      Garrett

      EDIT: Raymond, does that save the pics and everything? More info please. It may be a good way to back up my own threads.

    9. #9
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      Hows this for a plumbing mess. This is the outlet manifold from the bead filter. The top 3" line will go up to the vent, the bottom 3" line with the clear pvc goes to waste. The 3" line going left goes to the discharge manifold. This manifold will have three 2" single union ball valves to control flow through the three 2" lines going to the pond. The 1st and 2nd lines will each go through a 40 watt UV. The 3rd line will be stubbed in for a possible future heat exchanger if I ever install a heating system. The 3/4 ball valve at the end will go to my yard sprinkler system. Can't do any more until my stuff on order gets here.
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    10. #10
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      Grad to see that you have resurected the bead filter thread.... I missed not having it. Very interesting!
      Bruce

      "The significant problems we face cannot be solved at the same level of thinking we were at when we created them." Albert Einstein

      Every good landscaping project starts with a hole!



    11. #11
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      Hi Garrett,
      Yes, it saves the pics and text to a much smaller file than if I save the pics alone. I have the first 40 posts of Birdman's thread (996 KB file) but only the first 20 posts of Luke's (1754 KB). It is great for permanent archival of some of these great threads. I can't attach this file type to a thread, but I can email them to you if you are interested. Of course you'll need the free download Adobe Acrobat Reader to read them.

      ~Raymond.

    12. #12
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      Got some more piping done today on the outlet and both drains. Next I'm going to run a temp. line back to the vortex so I can circulate water for a few days to check for leaks.
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    13. #13
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      It Works

      In fact it works better than I ever thought. But then I have never used a 2 HP blower before so I had no idea what it would do. Picture shows the temp. 2" line I ran back to the vortex for circulation. I shut down the pump, Took the cap off the vent and added a 90, closed the discharge to the vortex, opened the line to waste and turned on the blower. My gosh, I thought that thing was headed for the moon!. It was quite apparent the blower will do a super job of stiring up the beads. While running the blower I turned on the pump again and started the flow to waste. Got mostly clean water of course being only circulating clean water for a few hours but it all worked just great. And no leaks.
      The only possible problem I see is maybe with bead filter inline my pump might end up being to small. I woh't know until I get the pond up and running. I'm also going to get a pressure gauge so I can check my back pressure and see what that is.
      Garrett, Luke, thank you for this super idea. My finial cost for this with the free tank and free beads is under $300. Not bad.
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    14. #14
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      Good to hear, what kind of water pump are you using? Also, how high is your bead stack inside the filter?

    15. #15
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      Cool,

      I see the vent up pretty high. Is there any water splashing out or could it be lowered? Did the blower seem to choke, for lack of a better term, when you turned the water pump on? I imagine even at 6K GPH that 4" exit pipe and 3" drain would habdle the water and air easily.

      As far as filtering the beads are the same as any other filter so you'll get that amount of cleaning. Set up after your bio is perfect.

      Garrett

    16. #16
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      can't want to hear the pressure gauge readings cleaned and dirty.

      be intresting to see compartive results against higher head bead filters made by manufactors.

    17. #17
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      Quote Originally Posted by luke-gr View Post
      Good to hear, what kind of water pump are you using? Also, how high is your bead stack inside the filter?
      The whole top half is full of beads, 7 cubic feet. I am using a superfalls pump that is rated at 6,600 GPH.

    18. #18
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      Quote Originally Posted by Harveythekoi View Post
      I see the vent up pretty high. Is there any water splashing out or could it be lowered? Did the blower seem to choke, for lack of a better term, when you turned the water pump on? I imagine even at 6K GPH that 4" exit pipe and 3" drain would habdle the water and air easily.

      As far as filtering the beads are the same as any other filter so you'll get that amount of cleaning. Set up after your bio is perfect.

      Garrett
      The vent pipe is temp Garrett, I did get my valves later today and put the valve right on top of the "T". When I ran the blower I put a 90 on pointing away and am glad I did. A lot of water came out. With the vent and drain open when I started the pump it didn't seam to slow down the blower at all.

    19. #19
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      Hmmmmmmm....wonder where I can get a well pressure tank ...... especially for free........

    20. #20
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      Quote Originally Posted by Dwight Floyd View Post
      Hmmmmmmm....wonder where I can get a well pressure tank ...... especially for free........
      Steve has them, and he's an awfully nice guy. I'll bet he'd trade you straight-across for a couple chickens. Texas/Oregon... not that far... you could do the trip in no time.

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