300 gallon update

Well, after cleaning out the dead fish and leaving the system pump constantly and running flooded beds for several days as well as some extra pumping and filtration, the water is still a little cloudy but I decided it was time to put in some test pilots. I moved 4 fish from the other system into the 300 gallon tank today.

To run this indexing valve system constant flow/flood, I simply remove the internal parts of the indexing valve so that it is functioning as a 6 way flow splitter. Then I flip the stand pipes in my grow beds over and top up the system as the grow beds all flood (if I didn’t add water the water level in a 300 gallon tank would get really shallow flooding 600 gallons of grow bed.)

I’m thinking that leaving this system running constant flood for the coldest two months of the winter might be a good idea for a bit more temperature stability.

There have been some trials going on over at BYAP that are showing constant flood to possibly be a better way to start up new systems and get cycled up quicker and that the plant growth doesn’t seem to be too far behind the progress of the flood and drain plants in a new system.
Here is a link to the BYAP trials thread

This method might be handy for dealing with extreme heat or extreme cold and depending on the design of the system the switch over between methods can be pretty simple.

It seems that constant flood (as long as the flow rate through each grow bed is sufficient and constant) can work rather well. I don’t think leaving beds flooded without constant flow is a good idea though, the flow is important for making sure there is sufficient aeration in the bio-filter and for the plants.

Now I’m just waiting for the temperature sensor so I can add a relay that will stop the feeder from working when the water temperature is too low.

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