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Thread: Filter upgrade

  1. #1

    Filter upgrade

    Hi All, Been meaning to post this for a while.
    3 years ago my wife and I moved house, it was all about the garden and a large pond in the middle of it, roughly 10m by 8m and average 0.8m deep with a shallow shelf running around 2/3rds of it.
    The water quality was poor, very dirty and hard to see the fish. Maybe around 20 koi of mixed sizes and who knows how many small fish, we almost never saw them. I knew nothing about ponds, we just fed them as the person we bought from told us and cleaned the filter (pressure fed style) via the handle maybe once a week. We lost a couple of koi over time, but took water samples to a local place and the water was fine, just dirty.
    There is a lot of planting and trees around the pond, we are surrounded by oaks and a large silver birch which I have grown to hate, it dumps so much into the pond along with all the other trees etc.
    Pic of the pond from a few years ago.
    IMG_20180807_185850.jpg
    IMG_20180807_185825.jpg
    You can see the water is brown and there is a lot of weed. I opened up the filter, an Oase FIltro clear 30,000, it was bought by the previous owner the year before we moved in, the foams were clogged with mud and not doing much. I bought a new set but no improvement, the filter can't cope with the pond size.
    I tried to dredge the pond with a net, it was terrible. Maybe 20 wheelbarrow's full of mud, rotting leaves, acorns etc. Smelly and filthy. I repeated this over many months thinking I'd never finish it. I had to clean the pipes running from the pump, full of mud, the pump more than once due to mud, you get the picture.
    There is a nice stone waterfall with an old box filter system at the top, you guessed it, full of mud. when it filled with mud too much the water would cascade over the edges and we would lose water giving a significant drop in the water level in a day so we'd clean it out, a nasty smelly job.
    fast forward 2.5 years, the water is improving and I'm starting to get less and less silt from the bottom, I bought new foams again and the water was improving, it was going green instead of brown but getting better.
    Having read about filtration, UV's, watched You tube video's etc I was going to build a filter but after having a chat with a couple of guys at the local specialist I got talked into an RDF. I knew an RDF was the best solution but didn't intend spending so much. I had looked at the cheaper options but ended up buying an Oase Profilclear compact with an Evolution Aqua 110 uv. The existing Oase pump was well up to the job and was replaced earlier this year as it had been damaged by the dirt in the pond.
    I knew I wanted to hide the RDF and keep the waterfall so decided to build a filter house at the back of the pond where it wouldn't be seen and I could get the RDF up high enough to still let gravity feed into the waterfall. I know a bottom drain is the best but that's maybe a future project.
    I had a lot of wood from a pergola that fell down in the winter so I used this to build the frame buying minimal materials. I also didn't want a concrete base so used a pea shingle filled plastic mesh for the base, I was very impressed.
    So, here's the photo's of the build, not quite finished yet but close, another couple of weeks before putting it to use.
    Round the back of the pond, space cleared for the base
    20200725_123733.jpg
    The gap leads to the top of the waterfall
    20200725_123741.jpg


    Last edited by Mags; 16-09-2020 at 10:57 PM.

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  3. #2

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  5. #3
    Building the frame out of old pergola posts, 4" x 4" and over 20 years old hence the rough appearance. Very solid but not always 100% straight!
    Attachment 34314

    Attachment 34315

    Decking for the floor
    Attachment 34316

    Attachment 34317

    Building out the frame and making doors
    Attachment 34318
    Adding a roof, hinged at the back for access
    Attachment 34319
    Attachment 34320

  6. #4
    Lots of feather edge for the cladding
    20200827_081441.jpg
    RDF in place, raised up off the deck to ensure a good slope to the waterfall. 110mm pipe return to the waterfall.
    20200827_081431.jpg
    The frame is for the UV to mount to. Although the Evo Aqua UV is cheaper than the Oase bitron, the amount of pipework to join them and the aggro outweighs the saving. I should have bought the bitron, I would have only had to connect up the flexi-pipe from the pump, much easier, never minds, too late now.
    20200827_081516.jpg

    More to come...

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  8. #5
    Senior Member Rank = Yonsai SamuraiJack's Avatar
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    Once it's finished it will look awesome, love the design
    Human life is truly a short affair. It is better to live doing the things that you like Inazo Nitobe

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  10. #6
    Hmm, uploading the photo's is a PITA, is there a way to bulk upload?
    Looks like I've messed some of them up.

  11. #7
    Great job, it's going to be so much better for you

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  13. #8
    Thanks. Gonna try to upload all the photo's to an album here and then add them to the thread. Bear with me!

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  15. #9
    I can't see how I upload multiple photo's so as they sit in Google photo's I've just created a link to the album in Google. I'll continue to add photo's as I move forward.

    The last few photo's show the water quality today, a huge improvement but this is before the RDF is up and running, just what I've managed to do with getting out the silt and squeezing the foam filters everyday. I also had a blanketweed problem that blanket answer sorted but the whole lined still has a coating which I think is the reason the water looks green, it's just the colour of the liner.
    I added a skimmer and although it was troublesome to get going, the pump is split roughly 50/50 skimmer/pump for input. It does a fantastic job, the photo's don't do it justice. As I am surrounded by tress and plants a lot makes it's way into the pond, the skimmer is doing a great job at hoovering this up but is has to be emptied daily, fine whilst I'm forced to work from home but not so easy when I return to the office and I'm out for 12 hours a day.
    I also added 2 diamondback sturgeon, a little about that on the sturgeon forum.

    The roof on the house was very heavy so I added gas strut's, a little extravagant but they work really well and mean I can easily stand in the housing to access the RDF without killing myself to lift it and prop it up.

    https://photos.app.goo.gl/LjBfUeUqiYBGV6PU9

    I need to get locks on the door, electrical installation and then hook her up. I will run the pump through the existing 2 bio filters at first to help with the colonisation of the new media in the RDF and then disconnect these and run the pump straight into the RDF via the new UV.
    Last edited by Mags; 17-09-2020 at 10:18 AM.

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  17. #10
    Senior Member Rank = Supreme Champion freddyboy's Avatar
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    nice one mate looks spot on

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  19. #11
    Senior Member Rank = Rokusai Koiz's Avatar
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    I think you can only upload photos in bulk if you are a paying subscriber, otherwise it's one at a time via the mobile app. You can load via PC also and you'll also be able to view your uploaded photo store that way too.

    That link works fine but it may be worth checking if you can make it a read only access to protect the control of your publicly shared album Filter upgrade

    Project looks very interesting and I love your reuse of the timber. I have the Proficlear Compact also. Love it. Just wondering how you are dealing with the waste from the drum. Do you have yours plumbed directly into your main drain?

    Sent from my SM-N910F using Tapatalk
    11,440L Raised Pond, BD, Oase ProfiClear, Bitron 55W, 2x10k Aquaforte Varios, Skimmer to Waterblade

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  21. #12
    Senior Member Rank = Grand Champion RS2OOO's Avatar
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    Already a massive difference in water clarity. The filter house looks great too.

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  23. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by Koiz View Post
    I think you can only upload photos in bulk if you are a paying subscriber, otherwise it's one at a time via the mobile app. You can load via PC also and you'll also be able to view your uploaded photo store that way too.

    That link works fine but it may be worth checking if you can make it a read only access to protect the control of your publicly shared album Filter upgrade

    Project looks very interesting and I love your reuse of the timber. I have the Proficlear Compact also. Love it. Just wondering how you are dealing with the waste from the drum. Do you have yours plumbed directly into your main drain?

    Sent from my SM-N910F using Tapatalk
    I was planning to just let it run into a container that I would empty as needed, good fertiliser for the plants, unless that is unrealistically?

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  25. #14
    Senior Member Rank = Rokusai Koiz's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mags View Post
    I was planning to just let it run into a container that I would empty as needed, good fertiliser for the plants, unless that is unrealistically?
    I think it's a very good idea if you are able to keep up with the management. Each wash uses about 1L of water. At times you may be needing to empty daily. Bear in mind that the collection will smell badly and attract insects (esp the bitey ones!) so good if you could have the collection container lidded.

    My drum is too far for the drain so goes to soakaway. I catch all the waste in a fine micron bag first to act as a dewatering device so only the foul water and none of the fines go underground, otherwise it would have silted up very quickly.

    I started using the fish waste for my plants but gave up as it honestly smelt too bad and attracted too many flies! I've had quite a problem with Blandford flies in particular and their bites are serious. Ended up in A&E with them a few times and now have antibiotic cream on prescription to hand all the time. I think it's because we have a reservoir in the field at the bottom of the garden and drainage ditches all around here too, so the little blighters are local. But, without doubt any collection device for fish waste will attract them and other winged invaders, so do bear that in mind.

    Having dealt with the amount of sludge and silted up media as you have, I'm sure you've probably thought of the already, but just in case .... Filter upgrade

    I now have a routine of rotating two dewatering bags, mostly daily, and my sludge goes down the toilet. Really very easy. Only downside is if I'm not well enough to do it, or we want to go away for a while. I then have to persuade the in-laws to handle the sludge bag Filter upgrade

    I'd also mention that you will need to hose down the dirty side of the drum periodically as it does get cruddy and smell. I've been doing mine about once a month through the summer (drum went live in June) and hope that'll be greatly reduced now till Spring. This is where the drain on the waste side of the unit comes in. I attach some 2" flexible pipe with a rubber reducer to direct my waste onto the grass when I do mine. You'll need to remove the drum mesh sections and hose those off too. They can be tricky to get in and out at first but the key is rotating the drum by hand so the section you are handling is way past the waste shoot. Then it's easy.

    When I do a good clear out, I scoop the media out into my blue bowl with pond water and airstone, as when you jet wash the dirty side, it can push debris through the grid at the bottom into the bio section. Pity Oase didn't make a slideable cover to use over this when washing down, but at least I've given you the heads up! I discovered this after my first clean when I saw debris in my media. It's a bit of a hassle but still better than the Nexus or Pressure systems I've had before.

    A good clean down doesn't take long to do (about an hour), but all round access makes it easier so you might need a step stool with your drum in its elevated position. I also purge my bottom drain once a week.

    Your water is looking so much better already with all your hard work, but you'll be amazed how much your drum will still take out. They are definately the best way to handle fines. Think you'll be very pleased with the results once it's all running.

    Hope some of this is helpful and sorry if I'm saying things you've already thought of.
    They are just tid bits of info I wish someone had told me! Filter upgrade

    Sent from my SM-N910F using Tapatalk
    11,440L Raised Pond, BD, Oase ProfiClear, Bitron 55W, 2x10k Aquaforte Varios, Skimmer to Waterblade

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  27. #15
    Senior Member Rank = Rokusai Koiz's Avatar
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    Just thought of another tip ... I took off the metal catch on the front of the lid. Makes it so much easier to lift the lid for a quick check inside. Link to my post about this:

    https://www.koiforum.uk/water-treatm...clear-lid.html


    Sent from my SM-N910F using Tapatalk
    11,440L Raised Pond, BD, Oase ProfiClear, Bitron 55W, 2x10k Aquaforte Varios, Skimmer to Waterblade

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  29. #16
    Senior Member Rank = Rokusai Koiz's Avatar
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    @Mags I just noticed that when looking at your photos on your link, it also shows your location on Google maps if you swipe down on a mobile. Can you find a way of stopping that? Don't mean to sound overly paranoid but it has been known for unscrupulous types to stalk forums such as this in the hope of finding the location of koi ponds to pilfer. Even if you don't have 'expensive' koi, you don't want to advertise where your pond is! Filter upgrade

    Sent from my SM-N910F using Tapatalk
    11,440L Raised Pond, BD, Oase ProfiClear, Bitron 55W, 2x10k Aquaforte Varios, Skimmer to Waterblade

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  31. #17
    Thanks for the detail, I hadn't considered it that much but I guess I do need to, a litre per cycle is not insignificant, especially as I expect it to run more initially as the water improves.
    I'll have a think about those points, very useful!
    Good point on the Google location, will see if I can stop that!

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