Fluidized bed filter media


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I am six weeks into my pond construction, and I am planning on using a 55 gallon blue barrel as my filter. I have discovered that what I'm going to construct is called a fluidized bed filter. I plan on pumping the water into the bottom of the barrel where it will rise to the top through filtering media and then flow back to the pond via an overflow pipe. The overflow will be my "water feature." My pond is 4000-5000 gallons, 16' x 24'
I currently am using a 3600 gph pump which sends the water to a wheelbarrow filled with rock and then back to the pond (see photos on my intro post). I plan on using a 2" pipe into the blue barrel and a 3" overflow pipe. My question: what kind of media should I use in the barrel? I have planned on using rock, larger at the bottom and smaller as it gets to the top, but I've been reading that rock is not the best idea. I've also planned on keeping some floating plants in the barrel. Any help, suggestions would be appreciated.

Thanks!
Paul
 
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Mr. Mucky Waters,

I'm talking about a biological filter. I've already got plans to take care of the basic debris in the pond.

Paul
 
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In a proper "fluidized bed" filter you want the media to be able to float and move around with the water flow, so you need some sort of media that is free floating and neutrality (or nearly) buoyant. They usually use stuff called "Kaldness" or "K1" media.
Here is a video of a DIY fluidized bed filter a guy built. Near the end of the video you see it in action showing how the media floats and flows around freely, the idea being that the media is self cleaning unlike typical static submerged media, (like rocks), which doesn't move and collects debris which inhibits bacteria growth.
 
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minnowman

minnowman
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Moving bed,upflow biofilters require precise flow control to maintain fluidization without losing filter material. A moving bed filter like MW posted are very easy to build and operate. The biggest drawback is the cost of the media.
 

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