Home-based and small business aquaculture

Re: Home-based and small business aquaculture

Postby Anthony Calfo » Wed Jul 29, 2009 11:43 pm

After the walls are studded out and (hopefully) had some insulation fitted between, its time to fix the vapor barrier. I prefer to take it a step further and use tekfoil which is fire retardant and 97% reflective! (in case you choose to exploit that feature and not finish the walls with panel boards)

You can find tekfoil at: http://www.farmtek.com/farm/supplies/ca ... ation.html

TekFoil Reflective Foil Insulation Specs

The primary function of reflective insulation is to reduce radiant heat transfer across open spaces, which is a major contributor to heat gain in the summer and heat loss in the winter. TekFoil products are engineered to provide an extremely effective, low cost system to help keep BTUs where they belong: outside when it's hot, and inside when it's not. Once installed in a building cavity, air is trapped, reducing heat flow by convection. TekFoil stops radiant heat flow by both reflectivity (97% reflective) and emissivity (only 3% emissive). Perforated TekFoil can be used under vinyl siding for reflection of heat and will not affect the siding. TekFoil advantages:

* Provides high R-value.
* Eliminates cold floors.
* Class A/Class I fire rating.
* 60 PSI crushing resistance.
* Provides reflective insulation for radiant heat loss or gain.
* Positive thermal break will reduce or eliminate condensation and is impervious to moisture.
* Quick and easy to install, store and handle. You only need a pair of scissors and a staple gun.
* Cut costs in half. Installs on walls, ceilings and under concrete slabs.
* Effective as a vapor barrier and a radon barrier.
* Will not promote the growth of fungus or bacteria.
* No change in performance due to compaction, settling, or moisture absorption.
* Environmentally safe and non-toxic. Provides a healthier environment for livestock.

Be sure to tape over staples, and tape seams.
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Re: Home-based and small business aquaculture

Postby Anthony Calfo » Wed Jul 29, 2009 11:45 pm

And don't forget to vapor block the ceiling (did I mention that already ;))
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Re: Home-based and small business aquaculture

Postby Anthony Calfo » Wed Jul 29, 2009 11:49 pm

OK, my friends... I am a tad sleepy now and reckon this is a good place to take a break for questions and contributions. After a spell we will pick up with building out a fishroom. :)

with kind regards to all, Anth-
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Re: Home-based and small business aquaculture

Postby lance » Thu Jul 30, 2009 12:37 am

Anthony,

Look's great is this your garage or steve's? Very wise choice to insulate so well I must admit that spark's my interest alot and adds some thought's to my fish room. Thanks for sharing this with us to use and enjoy.

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Re: Home-based and small business aquaculture

Postby Anthony Calfo » Thu Jul 30, 2009 9:09 am

It's a secret location ;) Actually... it is and will be a collection of images from various places I've visited. :)
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Re: Home-based and small business aquaculture

Postby xroads » Thu Jul 30, 2009 10:36 am

How about using spray foam. It not only blocks all drafts for excellent insulation but is also great for moisture barriers.
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Re: Home-based and small business aquaculture

Postby "Umm, fish?" » Thu Jul 30, 2009 1:29 pm

I love the spray foam. Nasty when they spray it, but dries non-toxic and non-permeable.
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Re: Home-based and small business aquaculture

Postby Anthony Calfo » Thu Jul 30, 2009 5:11 pm

The spray foam is handy... but is more expensive than some other alternatives, and it is also nowhere near as fire retardant.
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Re: Home-based and small business aquaculture

Postby lance » Fri Jul 31, 2009 12:50 am

Anthony what about a dehumidifier in the air system to cut the need for all that extra insulation? I use a dehumidifier and it seem's to remove alot of that extra moisture that can settle in the dry wall etc...

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Re: Home-based and small business aquaculture

Postby Anthony Calfo » Fri Jul 31, 2009 9:35 am

The insulation and moisture are mostly unrelated here, Lance. A dehumidifier is also remarkably expensive to run (do check the specs... most exchangers of the like, including and especially air conditioners) are prohibitively expensive to use. Instead, running twinwall ductwork through the fishroom allows cooler, drier air coming in from outside (down one side/direction of the twinwall duct) to pick up heat transferred (through the wall of the duct) but not moisture (which is exhausted in the opposite direction through the other side of the ductwork to the outside). This only requires a rather energy efficient fan to run it and more of the heat energy stays in the fishroom while moisture is removed.

kindly, Anth-
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Re: Home-based and small business aquaculture

Postby aomont » Fri Jul 31, 2009 2:59 pm

Great thread Anthony ! ;) I´ll check in as much as I can.
Would you do it any different if it was a room located in a usually hot location. I´m in Brazil and outside temps can easily get to 44C (~111 F) in summer, but sometimes down to 16C (~64F) in winter.
BTW, it has a door and a window on the front to the outside, there is a guests room next to it and neighboors on the other side... Nothing above, on the back or below.

Lots of questions on the nudibranchs too but will wait the garage to get set. ;)
Thanks,
Anderson.
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Re: Home-based and small business aquaculture

Postby Anthony Calfo » Fri Jul 31, 2009 10:15 pm

Hello, Anderson... good question, my friend!

Yes - I recommend strict and thorough insulation and sealing of any fishroom. The principal reason is that you want to have quantifiable, controllable (literally... thermostatic in most cases) control over the atmosphere in your facility. We do not want to leave any of it to chance through seepage (cracks, breaches in walls/ceilings) or conduction caused by weather (particularly hot or cold times that change the room temps because of the changing (inadequately insulated) wall temperatures.

Its all about CONTROL. And you need to begin with a working space like a Thermos, so to speak. Then... as per your needs, you will handle humidity (twinwall ducts on a thermostat), or heat (exhuast fan and circulatory fans for evaporative cooling... also run by thermostats. This will give you very precise control over the fishroom temps (and redundant thermostats inline are of course a very good idea).

In your particular situation, Anderson... you may need to do a little bit extra work. Evaporative cooling works fabulously under a reasonable amount of humidity (can't recall... but ideally it needs to be under 70% if memory serves me correctly). In a hot, HUMID climate... you may need more help than evaporative cooling alone. A simple solution for some folks is to have trays of calcium chloride (desiccant that is cheap in many parts of the world... we use it as road salt here in the USA in snowy areas). The trays will have drip tubes to a collection bucket and they (the trays) are to be stacked in front of the incurrent vent (window, mechanized shutters... whatever it is that your exhaust fan is pulling outside air through). What happens then is that the desiccant dries the humid air coming in so that it can better pick up moisture and heat (drafting over aquaria and through the room) on the way out with the exhaust fan. Another solution is geothermal cooling which is relatively inexpensive to install... but only on new constructions usually (unless you have space just outside of the fishroom to dig down and bury coiled for plumbing. That can get quite involved though.

More questions my friends... please keep them coming :) I promise more pics will follow shortly too. It depends on how much energy I have in the evenings. I've given up drinking wine and suddenly have found that I have a lot more time before bedtime ;)

with kindest regards, Anthony
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Re: Home-based and small business aquaculture

Postby lance » Sat Aug 01, 2009 12:50 am

Anthony Calfo wrote:The insulation and moisture are mostly unrelated here, Lance. A dehumidifier is also remarkably expensive to run (do check the specs... most exchangers of the like, including and especially air conditioners) are prohibitively expensive to use. Instead, running twinwall ductwork through the fishroom allows cooler, drier air coming in from outside (down one side/direction of the twinwall duct) to pick up heat transferred (through the wall of the duct) but not moisture (which is exhausted in the opposite direction through the other side of the ductwork to the outside). This only requires a rather energy efficient fan to run it and more of the heat energy stays in the fishroom while moisture is removed.

kindly, Anth-



thanks Anthony for that tip I will take a look into that.

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Re: Home-based and small business aquaculture

Postby littlebitoocean » Fri Aug 07, 2009 5:26 am

We are preparing to expand our current fish room to another room in a metal building. This is within the next year. Do you suggest the moisture barrier after we finish out the room or before we start to finish the room. We are in OK where the heat outside can be brutel. the room is 25 x 25 and has to have a wooded in framework to lower the ceiling and insulate the walls. We will be using it mostly as a grow out facility. The existing room has waterproof boarding all around and a water barrier on the floor for spills. It also has a drain. It has several windows we have painted over. and consist of 3 systems 2 adult systems and a growout system. Two of the sumps are located in a seperate room for ease of wc and maintenance. We use geothermal air and heat for the temp control and an exaust fan for humidity. The tanks are currently not covered, but we are in the process of revamping the tanks and will be covering each tank with a glass lid. We have figured we will make a room for food growing, and then have 4 growout banks on seperate systems that will contain approx 600 gals per system. We may expand the geothermal heat and air to include that room. there are no windows or outside doors in this particular room. It will be conected to the existing fish room by a door. We will wire the system to accept a generator for the main pumps in case of power outages. that way circulation is maintained but not temp.Any input is greatful.
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Re: Home-based and small business aquaculture

Postby Anthony Calfo » Fri Aug 07, 2009 6:43 am

Teresa... Your plan overall sounds rather thorough. If we could chat by phone or share some images I can perhaps help you further. At a glance though, the standout recommendation that comes to mind is about the way you run your tanks and back them up. One of the best and most efficient ways to protect your system(s) is to have an air operated sponge filter in every(!) tank. And... these filters are to be run off of a single energy efficient air blower (with another like one sitting unused as a backup). The reason for this is that a regenerative air blower takes very little electricity to run and it will allow you run your systems for a much longer period of time on a generator than trying to do the same work powering electric pumps (yikes!). Moreover... the air operated sponge filters in a power outage give you water circulation/oxygenation and biological filtration all at the same time. So regardless of what your other filtration is (wet dry, fluidized bed, etc)... at least you have the (very efficient) sponge filters running on a pittance of electricity.

To answer your original question, you can buy insulation with a vapor barrier built in for your studded walls. I'm not as big of a fan of that, or at least not stand alone. I'd rather see a proper barrier like the tekfoil (underneath the finishing panels)... else you need to tape the seems of the insulation. Its really a big deal to insure that moisture does not get into the space where the studs and insulation are. Mold/mildew is just not safe.

My best wishes for your Syngnathid project! I look forward to seeing your progress/images. Kindly, Anthony
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Re: Home-based and small business aquaculture

Postby KathyL » Sat Aug 08, 2009 8:40 am

Anthony,
I've searched for twin wall ducts a few times, and all I come up with are the flexible ductwork used in new construction. Can you provide a link or a manufacturer? I've looked into Heating Ventilation Systems, but what you are suggesting seems simpler/cheaper, and to my mind, better.

Also, those sponge filters can be run on battery operated bait box air pumps in a pinch. As far as cheap and effective, nothing saves an aquarium like the Pen Plax B-11 air pump, which has the added feature of coming alive the instant the power goes out. I once survived a 5 day power outage in a heat wave with battery operated air pumps, and 2 car rechargers with an inverter. I kept 700 clownfish juveniles alive in 90 little gallons of water. (Now I have a natural gas generator that comes on automatically when the power goes out. And I have a few more clownfish.) :D
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Re: Home-based and small business aquaculture

Postby littlebitoocean » Fri Aug 14, 2009 4:43 am

here is a link to my live photo album that has some pics of the fish room now. We are getting the new tanks next week and will make better use of the space we have bf expanding. Kathy, would love to take a trip to st louis and see your set up...
http://cid-389a31a96dcece26.photos.live ... =972519437
I need to add more pics have some more just to busy to do it.
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Re: Home-based and small business aquaculture

Postby KathyL » Fri Aug 14, 2009 7:17 am

Hi Teresa,
I would also like to see your set-up! Your link, unfortunately, takes one to Windows Live, and will not let you log on, because they are having some problem....
My set up is less than impressive, rather disorganized and small at the moment. I hope to improve that on all accounts with the new space. It's not set up yet, of course. When it is, please call and I would enjoy meeting you.
Kathy
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Re: Home-based and small business aquaculture

Postby Anthony Calfo » Fri Aug 14, 2009 8:01 am

Teresa... your setup looks interesting! I see a nice long bench (wet and dry) to work on, tidy racks, good use of space. Would love to see more pics too if you have the time :)

Kathy... I got my ductwork from the local furnace repair and installation chap. I have heard folks getting it too from fishroom suppliers (these folks may not have it, but I seem to require years ago a great fishroom supplier called Wet Thumb Aquatics in New Baltimore Michigan, if memory serves me).

To all: my apologies for the slowdown on the thread here. I'm just occupied with a print deadline for my reef magazine (which includes the MACNA program guide... crucial that I make this deadline :))
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Re: Home-based and small business aquaculture

Postby KathyL » Fri Aug 14, 2009 10:16 am

Anthony, WTA does not list the ductwork on their website....

Teresa, I finally got my Windows Live thing worked out and viewed your photos. Very nice. How do you like those metal racks? Do you have enough space over them to attend to the contents of the aquaria? I am tempted to stack tanks, but I am a bit short, and I like to have space above the tank for a better view of what I am doing. Perhaps a bit wasteful for me, so I am not sure how I will proceed....I like how you have kept the sumps open and accessible. That is one thing I've learned from bad experience. The sump is a working space. It does not pay to skimp on giving it space and access.
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Re: Home-based and small business aquaculture

Postby littlebitoocean » Sat Aug 15, 2009 4:46 am

I have a bit of a problem with access on the top tall tanks. Of course they were originally designed for the seahorses and they need to be tall. We bought the racks and sandblasted them and painted them with a rust inhibitor. They have worked very well for us. I am getting ready to move the seahorses to an 150 gal tank where i will have a chiller on it. They seam to do better in cooler temps. I currently do not have any babies as lost my females in the warmer water. Will have a bit of a problem tracking parents in the 150 but have only erectus but since they form pairbonds, should not have a problem collecting. They prefer (for their health) a temp around 74-76 otherwise they are prone to bacterial infections. Even the babies must be raised in cooler water. I have my fishroom on geothermal and the temp is set at 76 so with pumps and etc the temp in the tanks runs 80. The room and the pumps determine the temp. I do have heaters in my sump for the clownfish breeding system. and the babies. I keep them at 82. I now have a fan on the sump for the seahorse system and it runs around 77. When i move the horses i will drop the temp and i know i will have better luck with them. I have food down to a fine art. And i found an enrichment for brine that makes the babies double in size almost every 2 weeks.
Also in regards to the tall tanks, i have a bit of a backflow problem on the drainage system. Not enough to overflow, but have to be careful of the amount of flow into the tanks. It is because the top tanks are so high and the bottom tanks are so low. Would do it different next time.
I am done rattling along so ...
Teresa
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Re: Home-based and small business aquaculture

Postby janzzdave » Fri Sep 04, 2009 10:00 am

robinscp wrote:I found that building a wall dividing half the garage negated the problem of the large steel door and also allowed me some space to store all my junk etc. :D

viewtopic.php?f=132&t=2728

The wooden panels are treated and the insulation is 3inch thick foil coated polystyrene.

Climate control is done via an ATC 800 attached to an oil filled radiator (only needed in winter in the UK) and a humidity controlled bathroom fan is used to extract any humid air.


this same i got last time "ATC 800"


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Re: Home-based and small business aquaculture

Postby janzzdave » Fri Sep 04, 2009 10:01 am

robinscp wrote:I found that building a wall dividing half the garage negated the problem of the large steel door and also allowed me some space to store all my junk etc. :D

viewtopic.php?f=132&t=2728

The wooden panels are treated and the insulation is 3inch thick foil coated polystyrene.

Climate control is done via an ATC 800 attached to an oil filled radiator (only needed in winter in the UK) and a humidity controlled bathroom fan is used to extract any humid air.


this same i got last time "ATC 800"


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Re: Home-based and small business aquaculture

Postby KathyL » Fri Sep 04, 2009 5:14 pm

Well,
I have had a change in plans, a consequence of interviewing for a day job. I don't have the job as of now, but I've made a decision to be open to one, should I get an offer I like. So it makes no sense to move the breeding operation to a commercial property. I'll just have to make the best of what I do have. Now there is a real possibility that I will use the garage after all. So I am eagerly awaiting the next chapter of this thread...
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Re: Home-based and small business aquaculture

Postby Marcel » Wed Oct 14, 2009 10:58 am

Hi Anthony,

are you ready for South Africa?
We are all exited here and can´t wait for the opening on Friday the 23rd.
If you need a lift, a bit company or you are just curious to see my albino clowns before the IMACSA, Rob got my contact details.

Looking forward to meet you.

Have a good flight

Kind regards

Marcel
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