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View Full Version : Rotary Drum VS. Radial Flow VS. Vortex



mtsklar
05-13-2013, 10:42 AM
In the battle for the best here is some interesting data on mechanical filters:

http://integrated-aqua.com/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2012/09/Radial_Flow_Settler_Whitepaper.pdf


""Rapid and effective solids removal can positively affect the health of fish
in water recirculating systems (Bullock et al., 1994, 1997). Accumulation of solids within
aquaculture tanks and systems can promote an environment that harbors fish pathogens. In
addition, solids that are not rapidly removed can break down into smaller particles that
leach nutrients, degrade water quality, and exert a biological oxygen demand that also
increases dissolved carbon dioxide levels. These smaller suspended solids can cause gill
irritation, which can lead to reduced immune system efficiency, and ultimately disease
outbreak""

KatieVL
05-13-2013, 02:32 PM
Interesting read. It suggests for commercial operations to use a radial flow separator before the RDF. By putting a radial flow separator first, it removes 40-45% of the waste and then the rdf removes another 48%. by getting half of the waste out first, you reduce the frequency of flushing the rdf. Thus, saving water and electricty.
The regular vortex is not very good at removing suspended waste.

MCAsan
05-13-2013, 03:51 PM
Way back at the dawn of time Waddy introduced big vortex filter. Everyone was impressed with what settled out in the chamber. Then came The Answer from EA.....and even Waddy was impressed at how more solids were blocked by a 100 micron screen. And if you want to be amazed, run water through a RDF with a 50 micron or smaller screen.

KatieVL
05-13-2013, 05:04 PM
I have a 40 micron RDF, and it is amazing what it removes.

Clunn
05-13-2013, 10:37 PM
Would an RDF be sufficient enough to remove fines, instead of using a SG filter or a bead?

Will
05-13-2013, 11:44 PM
RDF is an excellent filter to remove fines. I still like the S&G filter for polishing water, but 40 micron RDF screen is smaller than you can see in 6' of water, for sure.

Birdman
05-14-2013, 10:14 AM
One word of caution. While a RDF will work well the electronics in it can be a problem. A customer of mine had a power surge that fried all his electronics in his RDF. I'm kind of old school and like simplicity. I'll stick with my sieves and S/G filters.

Clunn
05-14-2013, 10:50 AM
RDF is an excellent filter to remove fines. I still like the S&G filter for polishing water, but 40 micron RDF screen is smaller than you can see in 6' of water, for sure.


My thinking would be to send all water through the RDF and then use one pump to a shower. And have a tpr manifold and possible return to a waterfall. Currently the RDF is out of the budget, but this enables me to ponder the idea around.

Clunn
05-14-2013, 10:59 AM
One word of caution. While a RDF will work well the electronics in it can be a problem. A customer of mine had a power surge that fried all his electronics in his RDF. I'm kind of old school and like simplicity. I'll stick with my sieves and S/G filters.

That is a pretty good point. Did he have any type of surge protection on his RDF. I run surge protectors on every thing in my house (TV's, computers, fridge, and dishwasher) as well as a whole house surge protector.

I once had to have a fridge repair come to swap out a circuit board that had a recall. When he pulled the fridge out and saw the surge protector he said it was the best idea he had seen, and would recommend it to other clients.

I guess what I'm saying is that sometimes we don't think to put them on other electronic devices.

KatieVL
05-14-2013, 11:31 AM
At my pond the 3 bottom drains go to the RDF and the 2 skimmer circuits go to 2 bead filters. I'm not very happy with the bead filters and might change them to S/G filters one day.

Paultergeist
05-14-2013, 01:52 PM
I am not sure if I have ever seen a "radial flow separator"....? Can anyone cite a commercial-available example?

mpageler
05-14-2013, 01:55 PM
What I've gather from other forums, that RDF, while not in the polishing class, is a very good fines filter system.

I do have similar thoughts as Birdman on RDF. With the hobbyist targeted RDF that have hit the market over the last few years, I would be leary of long term maintenance cost in replacing electrical/electronic components.
I'm old enough that I can remember when you could actually work on an engire before all the electronics were added. Even in the old days, I always hated electrical issues, because for the driveway mechanic, they were tough to diagnois and usually took a shop visit.

ricshaw
05-14-2013, 02:11 PM
I am not sure if I have ever seen a "radial flow separator"....? Can anyone cite a commercial-available example?

http://www.koiphen.com/forums/attachment.php?attachmentid=253340&stc=1&d=1211405280

Living Water Solutions (http://livingwatersolutions.myshopify.com/collections/pre-filters) is a source.

ricshaw
05-14-2013, 02:18 PM
I got an up close look at a Rotary Drum Filter at the ZNA NorCal Koi Show. I too wonder how well these filters will hold up after 3+ years.

http://i1.ytimg.com/vi/HdzATPKVYqw/hqdefault.jpg

Paultergeist
05-14-2013, 07:21 PM
Living Water Solutions[/URL] is a source.

Thanks Rick.

mtsklar
05-14-2013, 07:35 PM
http://www.koiphen.com/forums/attachment.php?attachmentid=253340&stc=1&d=1211405280

Living Water Solutions (http://livingwatersolutions.myshopify.com/collections/pre-filters) is a source.

This is not a radial flow separator, it is a static basket pre-filter from Kent Wallace.

There is an image/cross section of a radial flow separator paper posted in the post #1.

Zac Penn
05-14-2013, 09:08 PM
http://www.koiphen.com/forums/attachment.php?attachmentid=253340&stc=1&d=1211405280


That picture is the exact reason why I will not recommend these types of filters anymore. Anything that is stringy will never get cleaned from the strapping with out a lot of work. I had a hell of a time cleaning them and they are just nasty to reach into and shake to release the sludge buildup. I have become a "keep you hands dry" type of person HAHAHA

MCAsan
05-14-2013, 09:48 PM
I have become a "keep you hands dry" type of person HAHAHA

If going static bed inside a vortex, go K1 or similar so you can fluidize it with air and dump the dirt.....without getting hands wet. Same for S&G.

ricshaw
05-14-2013, 10:05 PM
That picture is the exact reason why I will not recommend these types of filters anymore. Anything that is stringy will never get cleaned from the strapping with out a lot of work. I had a hell of a time cleaning them and they are just nasty to reach into and shake to release the sludge buildup. I have become a "keep you hands dry" type of person HAHAHA

Maybe you would like a self cleaning Vortex Microstrainer (http://wlimproducts.com/vortex-microstrainer.htm) as shown in my YouTube video.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EDrGpIwrwSk&feature=share&list=UUyMpDDQ2wvqLw_DJetJCm2w

Appliance Guy
05-15-2013, 12:18 AM
That is a pretty good point. Did he have any type of surge protection on his RDF. I run surge protectors on every thing in my house (TV's, computers, fridge, and dishwasher) as well as a whole house surge protector.

I once had to have a fridge repair come to swap out a circuit board that had a recall. When he pulled the fridge out and saw the surge protector he said it was the best idea he had seen, and would recommend it to other clients.

I guess what I'm saying is that sometimes we don't think to put them on other electronic devices.

I specifically tell people NOT to put it on a refrigerator. The problem is that any decent surge protector is designed to fault with even low surge- surges that would not even effect the fridge. Inevitably- the homeowner will come home to a 'tripped' surge protector and a loss of food. Murphy' Law it will happen the moment they leave for vacation. You will find that most kitchens are designed with the fridge outlet on it's own breaker. In fact by code- kitchens are supposed to have a GFCI device throughout the kitchen save the fridge. A lot of new homes have garages with GFCI's throughout, inevitably I get a call every few weeks where the homeowner moved the old fridge to the garage and it trips the GFCI. I'm a nice guy and tell em to take an extension cord and plug the unit into a non-GFCI outlet. then tell em to call if they still have issues. Rarely was there an actual issue.

I highly recommend a proper surge device (not the $10 ones- they don't crap) for the dishwasher and the washing machine. They are loaded with controls and it won't matter if it trips.

Sorry for the hijack...

Zac Penn
05-15-2013, 08:12 AM
Maybe you would like a self cleaning Vortex Microstrainer (http://wlimproducts.com/vortex-microstrainer.htm) as shown in my YouTube video.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EDrGpIwrwSk&feature=share&list=UUyMpDDQ2wvqLw_DJetJCm2w

They work as long as they are installed PERFECTLY! If they are slightly out of level they can stop spinning, if the spray bars aren't directed correctly it will stop spinning, if the waste inside the chamber is not heavy it will just get blown off the screen and then sucked right back onto it a couple seconds later. They work, but they also increase your dissolved organics due to the waste staying in the water column and constantly being sprayed off the screen. I would always prefer to see a sieve used over a micro-screen.

MCAsan
05-15-2013, 08:35 AM
Agreed. VMS was introduced to compete with the Answer around 12 years ago. The Answer died due to high capex and opex. Also if the screen closed with bio film and/or the backwash pump stopped, the screen would implode. I think sieve is a better mechanical stage than Answer, VMS, or any static bed/barrier.

powerman
05-15-2013, 09:17 AM
http://www.koiphen.com/forums/attachment.php?attachmentid=253340&stc=1&d=1211405280

Living Water Solutions (http://livingwatersolutions.myshopify.com/collections/pre-filters) is a source.

That is just a static pre-filter

Serin
05-15-2013, 09:33 AM
Here is a link to a real diy radial flow filter, plus a video of it running. Very impressive.

http://www.earthangroup.com.au/diy-blue-drum-radial-flow-filter/

http://m.youtube.com/#/watch?v=G0pTf12wDOQ&desktop_uri=%2Fwatch%3Fv%3DG0pTf12wDOQ

If I didn't already have a swirl separator, I would build one of these ... maybe down the road (:

powerman
05-15-2013, 09:50 AM
A radial flow separator is made by having a gravity fed settlement chamber with a cone bottom, bringing the pipe for the bottom drain over to the center of the chamber and then ninety it straight up, you then put a tube that is higher than the water level around the pipe. Because the tube is taller than the water level in the chamber. the water from the bottom drain would be bubbling straight up in the center and having no where else to go would then flow back down toward the cone bottom, still inside the tube.. there has to be enough space below the bottom of the tube and the start of the cone so as not to disturb the solids settling in the cone.. tests show that this type of settlement is twice as effective as vortex or swirl settlement. it is then imperative to empty the solids out of the bottom of the settlement chamber, in this study that was done twice a day. I want to make a pond with this type of settlement but with an air lift on a timer to empty it at regular intervals for me.
In this study, they weren't comparing the rdf to these other two types of settlement, rather the rdf was preceded by the swirl settler and then by the radial flow separator and those results compared. If I were to ever use an rdf, I would have settlement ahead of it to keep from having the solids collect on the screen and have water forced over them..Even with the frequent backwash cycles, I don't like the idea of having the solids dissolving on the screen. Every bit of waste is pushed to the screen and has water forced over it until it either dissolves or the screen starts to clog and the cleaning cycle is triggered... by comparison, gentle settlement allows the waste to be removed without the force of the water flowing over around and through it to make it dissolve ...
The case of someone having the controls fried because of a surge isn't the only problem with the electronics... several people have had problems with the rdfs not working properly. sensors failing.. there is a thread on koiphen where some people talk about their problems with the rdf.. I don't want to buy something that is that sensitive.. like Birdman, I like simple but unlike him, I don't care for sieves on bottom drain lines.( I have one on my indoor tank ) I have vortex settlement followed by brushes on my main pond... I have to drain the vortex, drain the brush tank, wash the brushes... lots of work if you don't like that sort of thing but I don't mind it and I think it beats the sieve but not for someone that doesn't want to get wet.

More than one way to skin a cat,and definitely more than one way to effectively filter a koi pond. One of the keys for optimal koi health is to get the solids out of the system as quickly as possible and not to dissolve them into organic soup.

powerman
05-15-2013, 09:54 AM
cross post, that is a good example of how to make a simple one...

ricshaw
05-15-2013, 12:22 PM
Here is a link to a real diy radial flow filter, plus a video of it running. Very impressive.
http://www.earthangroup.com.au/diy-blue-drum-radial-flow-filter/
http://m.youtube.com/#/watch?v=G0pTf12wDOQ&desktop_uri=%2Fwatch%3Fv%3DG0pTf12wDOQ
If I didn't already have a swirl separator, I would build one of these ... maybe down the road (:
http://www.thepondforum.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=9073&stc=1&d=1368625759

Is there really enough space between the center bucket and the vortex on the DIY radial flow filter above?

http://i1182.photobucket.com/albums/x457/Richard_Renshaw/Koi%20related/radial-flowsettler.jpg

Serin
05-15-2013, 12:56 PM
Is there really enough space between the center bucket and the vortex on the DIY radial flow filter above?

i think that pic is of an unfinished unit, maybe. If you watch the video of it in action, there is more space and the way the water flows makes more sense.