Is this skippy too big???


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OK, I've calculated my pond volume to be about 750-800 gallons. I have a 2400 gph pump and a 70 gallon skippy that I'm building for the waterfall. Will this set up be good or is the skippy too large?
 
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If you put 50 adult Koi into the pond then it is too small. If you put one goldfish it is not too big since there is no such concept, but the filter isn't needed to keep the goldfish alive.

Pond size and filter size have no relation. Fish load to filter size is the calculation you need and that is only a rough guess. And filter size is defined by surface area not gallons. Skippys can have all kinds of media inside. Bacteria conversion of ammonia depends on lots of issues so there's no formula.

Understand first what is exactly being filtered. In a Skippy that is conversion of ammonia through the cycle. That's it. It doesn't remove muck, poo, or anything else at least at any level that could be noticed. There's no "balance", "natural" or any other meaningless buzz word.

Understand this bacteria will grow on most any surface. Liner, pipes, pump, falls, stream and that the bacteria will multiple as food (ammonia) increases until there is no more space or conditions allow. For almost all water gardens the surface area of the pond is enough without any filter. Koi ponds are different. True Koi ponds, not just water gardens with a Koi or two. A bunch of 20+lb fish being fed pounds of food a day in a small pond has to run like a waste water treatment plant.

Then you will totally get this whole filter thing. Of course if you just like filters, which I really did when I first started, then you should build as many filters as big as you like. You should have fun with the hobby. To much filter won't hurt anything other than maybe your pocket book and free time.

There is absolutely only one way to determine if a filter is large enough, by measuring ammonia levels. There is no way anyone can correctly tell you if any filter is large enough. I mean, pretty much everyone will, but they will also tell you what stocks to buy and which horses to bet on too.

There are of course some good guesses based on past experience. A 70 gallon Skippy for 800 gal pond would normally be considered huge. Skippys are kind of by definition in the 50-150 gal range. Other sizes using the same scheme just have different names.

For me, in that size pond, I would put something like 10-30 feeder size goldfish, no filter at all, a 100-200 GPH pump, small stream and waterfall, monitor ammonia at the start and as the fish grow, buffer pH and call it a day. But that's me.

Cool to see someone from Rochester. I grew up in Kendall, 30 miles west.
 

koiguy1969

GIGGETY-GIGGETY!!
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unlike the original skippy my 70 gallon has a flush valve assembly and most certainly does catch plenty of muck , poo and other debris, one check of what comes out on a flush would tell you so...just like on all our 55 gallon designs its as easy as putting a shower drain, toilet flange and at least a 2" ball valve and piping mounted on or as close to the bottom of filter as possible. open the valve and woosh all kinds of poo is eliminated from the system entirely. but it is a fact theres no such thing as too much filter, just not enough. i run a 1200gph pump with large debris prefilters to protect my pump. this sets directly on the bottom of my pond...i am way overstocked and my water clarity and quality are in thre ideal range all the time. yeah if run a little 250gph pump your not gonns pull anything but water but a pump with a bit more suction will pull plenty.
 
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If you pump crap into a Skippy it will certainly muck up. However the entire point of a Skippy is to be a home for nitrifying bacteria, a bio filter. A bio filter that has to be flushed often enough to make any difference in cleaning muck out of pond is not a bio filter because the muck kills the nitrifying bacteria.

There are mechanical filters and there are bio filters. A bio filter can be used (abused) as a mechanical filter but a mechanical can't be a bio filter, or at least a very good one. You can call a mechanical filter a Skippy but it doesn't make it one. I can call my car a motorcycle too.

Bio filters are placed after a mechanical filter if pulling muck from the pond bottom if you actually need the bio filter to work. Or water can be pulled from mid water or skimmer after a mechanical filter (basket).
 

koidaddy

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Just built this setup with a few modifications. Ultilizes two 55 gallon containers. First does mechanical, second if for biological and finer particulates.

This idea and pic are from the net.
 

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