loading

The grow bed is where the media for the growing of plants resides. It also houses two (2) sensors - first being a Media Probe and the other being a DS18B20 Temperature Probe. Also located within the grow bed is the Root Clogging Preventer Mechanism which covers and allows for the water return to Fish Tank through the return opening - This is a major problem no one talks about in aquaponics - roots clog everything - unless you plan for the problem systems will fail and will be under designed. The last item found in the grow bed is the Overflow Preventer and water delivery mechanism. Having the overflow preventer in the grow bed will not let any water escape from your grow bed should the grow bed is over filled or if a system problem is encountered. This mechanism also serves as the water delivery system where filtered / bio-treated water is delivered to the grow bed.

PROCESS IMPROVEMENTS:
At anytime improvements to this build can be made. These improvements can and will take many different forms. When new tricks are learned or better parts are sourced changes will be made. Updates will be made at aquaponic DIY Automation Blog and the new ideas - parts or changes will be updated in this Instructable. So please send in your ideas and modifications and design changes can and will be made if they are of value to others interested in this project.

VISIT STORE FOR ITEMS TALKED ABOUT HERE:

AGponics Store

BALCONY GARDEN - is featured as a Project in MAKE MAGAZINE - vol 47 starting on page 62

Step 1: Start With -- Grow Bed Container

The main thrust of the Balcony Garden is to provide sourcing of materials for the project locally and adhere to the basics of aquaponics. Using two 27-gallon tote bins allows for the first rule of aquaponics media based system to be followed. That rule is "There should be a 1:1 relationship between grow-bed and fish tank. The 27- gallon tote bin has a very small footprint and can be purchased at all major big box stores and Costco as well.

It must be pointed out that not all 27-gallon tote bins are created equal. Each source you go to carries a different designed tote. They all look the same from a distance - Black body and Yellow top. Fact is that the Yellow tops have different design configuration - some are square - some are diamonds. The Black bin bodies are very different as well. This is important to know because it impacts placement of the key components of the grow-bed. In order to be able to seal the grow-bed at the penetration points it is critical that a flat surface is used. This will change placement of the grow-bed drain and the over flow pipe by a little bit depending on which 27-gallon tote bin being used and where it was purchased from. It also needs to be pointed out the re-sellers change manufactures and manufactures change there designs quite often. SO BEWARE ABOUT THIS FACT.

This is no big deal if you are going to only made one of these, but if a bin breaks over gets damaged make sure to match up the first tote bin with any new tote bins purchased or the placement of the key components of the grow-bed will not match the original pass through holes for grow-bed drain and pump water supply. BEWARE - BEWARE

SOURCES OF TOTE BINS:

27-Gallon Tote with Standard Snap Lid

http://www.lowes.com/pd_44066-61896-44066___?produ...

Homz 27-Gallon Tough Tote, Black/Yellow, Set of 4

http://www.walmart.com/ip/Homz-27-Gallon-Tough-Tot...

27 Gal. Storage Tote in Black -- HDX Model # HDX27GONLINE(5) Internet # 206126311

http://www.homedepot.com/p/HDX-27-Gal-Storage-Tote...

Step 2: DRAIN -- GROW-BED -- Part of Aquaponic Balcony GARDEN

The draining of the grow-bed allows for nutrient water be re-cycled back to the fish tank and be recharged with nutrients. It is very important that the drain is sealed tightly where it passes through the tote bin and allows for connection to the electrical ball valve that controls when the grow-bed fills and drains. If not sealed correctly water will be everywhere and can cause major damage to living spaces if indoors or on upper balcony apartment units. So what ever method you use to accomplished this task make sure it works and no leaks occur.

ACTION 1 --

Pull the parts together.

PARTS:

27-Gallon Tote with Standard Snap Lid
http://www.lowes.com/pd_44066-61896-44066___?produ...

15 inch 1" PVC pipe section - schedule 40

1 in. PVC-Lock x 1 in. MPT Adapter
http://www.homedepot.com/p/Orbit-1-in-PVC-Lock-x-...

The Hillman Group 50-Count 5/16-in 3/4-in Rubber Standard (SAE) Flat Washers

http://www.lowes.com/pd_441731-37672-3813___?produ...

LASCO 1-1/2-in Dia x 1-in Dia PVC Sch 40 Bushing Item #: 22717 | Model #: 438211RMC

http://www.lowes.com/pd_22717-1815-438211RMC___?pr...

LASCO2 in X 1-in dia PVC Sch 80 Nipples-- quantity
http://www.lowes.com/ProductDisplay?partNumber=570...

FORMUFIT F001IDC-WH-10 PVC Internal Domed End Cap, Furniture Grade, 1" Size, White (Pack of 10)

http://www.amazon.com/FORMUFIT-F001IDC-WH-10-Inter...

AGponic GROW-BED seal kit

AGponics - "Grow Bed" seal kit - select "AGponics Store" tab

Sashco 13013 5oz Sashco Sealants Clear Lexel Adhesive Caulk, 5-Ounce

http://www.amazon.com/Sashco-13013-Sealants-Adhesi...

TOOLS:

CMT 537.317.31 Forstner Bit, 1-1/4-Inch Diameter, 3/8-Inch Shank Size: SHK 3/8 | CD 1-1/4, Model: 537.317.31

http://www.amazon.com/537-317-31-Forstner-4-Inch-D...

Dremel SawMax 3-Piece Rotary Kit
http://www.lowes.com/pd_521303-353-SM20-03___?prod...

5/16-Inch Multi Material Drill Bit

http://www.amazon.com/Irwin-Tools-4935109-16-Inch-...

3/8-in Cordless Drill
http://www.lowes.com/pd_83529-70-DCD710S2_1z0wcj4_...

PVC-Lock Release Tool Kit - optional - but nice to have

http://www.homedepot.com/p/Orbit-PVC-Lock-Release-...

1/8-in Twist Drill Bit
http://www.lowes.com/pd_351682-70-DW1308++G___?pr...

8-in File
http://www.lowes.com/pd_138261-86580-K8H_1z13e72_...

DWTPT Series Qualtech Carbon Steel Pipe Tap - 1 inch
http://www.amazon.com/Drill-America-Qualtech-Carb...

ACTION 2 --

prep for opening that will serve as the pass through point for the drain.

At this point use any direction of the inside of the grow-bed tole selected.

Come down 2 inched from short side of tote and make mark.

Come over 5.5 inches from the long side of the tote make a mark at the intersection with the 2 inch mark

-- MAKE SURE TO BE ON A FLAT AREA - OF AT LEAST 1.75 INCHES OF CLEARANCE ---

Drill 1/8 inch hole at the crossing mark created with the 2 inch mark and the 5.5 inch mark.

ACTION 3 --

Drill 1.25 inch hole use the pilot hole created in ACTION 2 as the guide.

ACTION 4 --

Bottom side of grow-bed fitting. This fitting is made up of a 1 1/2 inch to 1 inch bushing and 1 inch X 2 nch nipple.So there is some prep work to get ready to be used. The nipple needs to be threaded into the back side of the 1 1/2 bushing. Problem is that the 1 1/2 bushing bottom will not allow this to take place as it is molded wrong for the nipple to be threaded in. The bushing needs to be filed for ground down and taped with a 1 inch tap to allow the nipple to be threaded in and glued so a tight and secure bond is made so the completed assembly functions as a single fitting.

ACTION 5 -- 2 OPTIONS AT THIS POINT FOR SEALING HOLE

First option is the DIY option --

Using rubber washers insert PVC Lock through them. Use of Lexel will be needed as this option does not seal with out the adhesive. If "FOOD GRADE" quality is wanted the adhesive will need to be treated with Ruberize-IT as the adhesive is not food grade material.

Second Option -- USING THE "SEAL KIT"

A grow-bed "SEAL KIT" can be purchase at AGponics Store -- select Store tab

Either option used requires the 1 1/2 bushing to be threaded on to the PVC Lock fitting on the bottom side of the grow-bed.

If Option 1 is used the bushing needs to have adhesive placed between the tote opening and flat end of the bushing to seal.

If Option 2 is used a second silicon 100% food grade seal is placed on the threaded end of the PVC Lock fitting on the bottom side of the grow-bed as well as inside the grow-bed side. Hand tighten the 1 1/2 bushing to the PVC Lock fitting and the connection will seal

ACTION 6 --

Use the 15 inch - 1 inch PVC pipe.

5/16 inch holes are drilled into on end of the pipe. At this point use either end. Holes should be 1.25 inches up from bottom of pipe.

Using the Max Saw cut slits up the pipe starting just above the 5/16 holes. Only cut about 1/4 the way through the pipe. The slits should be on both sides of the pipe.

STOP the slits about 4 inches short of the other end of the pipe as the silts are cut moving up the pipe about every 3/8 inch.

ACTION 7 --

Place 1 inch PVC drain pipe into PVC Lock inside grow-bed.

ACTION 8 --

The end plug goes into the top of the 1 inch drain pipe sticking up out of the grow-bed. Some filing of the plug will be needed so it can be pulled out at a later time. Without the filing the plug might not be able to be pulled out on demand.

PROCESS IMPROVEMENTS:
At anytime improvements to this build can be made. These improvements can and will take many different forms. When new tricks are learned or better parts are sourced changes will be made. Updates will be made at AGponics.com -- select "AGponics Store" option and the new ideas - parts or changes will be updated in this Instructable. So please send in your ideas and modifications and design changes can and will be made if they are of value to others interested in this project.

Step 3: OVERFLOW PIPE -- GROW-BED -- Part of Aquaponic Balcony GARDEN

Overflow pipe serves two purposes in the grow-bed. First function is to allow water to flow back into the fish tank if water level in the grow-bed starts approach starting to overflow the grow-bed volume. The 2 inch PVC pipe is 12 inches in length which is just short of the height of the tote bin being used as the grow-bed area. Second function is to allow for the 1/2 inch pipe coming from the sump pump located in the fish tank access to the grow-bed. The 1/2 inch pipe is attached to the sump pump and is pumped up through the overflow pipe and over the top of the cap covering the overflow pipe and into the grow-bed.

ACTION 1 --

Pull the parts together for the build.

ACTION 2 --

Prep for opening that will serve as the pass through point for the OVERFLOW PIPE. On left side way from drain hole drill a 2.25 inch hole on the flat area of the grow-bed bottom leave enough room for the seal to sit flat against the bottom of the grow-bed-- MAKE SURE TO BE ON A FLAT AREA - OF AT LEAST 2.75 INCHES OF CLEARANCE

ACTION 3 -- 2 OPTIONS AT THIS POINT FOR SEALING HOLE

First option is the DIY option -- Using the 2.25 or 57 MM O-Ring. Place the O-Ring on the 2 " ABS adapter. Screw into the 2.25 inch hole that was created in ACTION 2. Use of Lexel will be needed as this option does not seal with out the adhesive. If "FOOD GRADE" quality is wanted the adhesive will need to be treated with Rubberize-IT as the adhesive is not food grade material.

Second Option -- USING THE "SEAL KIT" A grow-bed "SEAL KIT" can be purchase at AGponics Store - select "AGponics Store" tab -- select Store tab.

Either option used requires the 2 inch T X S coupling to be threaded on to the threaded end of the 2 inch adapter that has been threaded into the bottom of the grow-bed.

If Option 1 is used the coupling needs to have adhesive placed between the tote opening and flat end of the coupling to seal.

If Option 2 is used a second silicon 100% food grade seal is placed on the threaded end of the 2 inch adapter fitting on the inside of the grow-bed side. Just hand tighten the 2 inch coupling on to the 2 inch threaded adapter the extends out the bottom of the grow-bed the connection will seal and it will be water tight.

ACTION 4 --

--- TEST - TEST - TEST ---

Now that both the DRAIN and OVERFLOW PIPE are in place it is time to TEST the seals. If any leaks re-do the fittings and apply new adhesive for option 1 in STEP 3. If option 2 was followed a simple adjustment would be required if all steps were followed and completed correctly.

ACTION 5 --

Add OVERFLOW extension to the 2 inch coupling on the bottom side of grow-bed. The 2 inch couoling is attached to the OVERFLOW 2 inch adapter that passes through the grow-bed bottom. This extension allows the OVERFLOW from the grow-bed to go into the fish tank.

PROCESS IMPROVEMENTS:
At anytime improvements to this build can be made. These improvements can and will take many different forms. When new tricks are learned or better parts are sourced changes will be made. Updates will be made at aquaponics DIY Automation Blob and the new ideas - parts or changes will be updated in this Instructable. So please send in your ideas and modifications and design changes can and will be made if they are of value to others interested in this project.

Step 4: WATER DELIVERY -- GROW-BED -- Part of Aquaponic Balcony GARDEN

Water delivery sub-system is how water gets into the grow-bed. It is simple in concept and uses the overflow pipe as a path way into the grow-bed. There are basically 4 parts that are needed for it to function. The base cap covers the overflow 2 inch pipe and prevents grow-bed media from falling down the overflow pipe, but allows overflow water to drain down through the 2 inch overflow pipe and back into the fish tank. The overflow cap is held above the overflow pipe by a 1/2 threaded 15 inch nipple connected to the sump pump in the fish tank by a threaded coupling that allows for height adjustment of the overflow pipe cap. There are three #8-32 Stainless Steel screws in the overflow so cap stays in correct positioning during operation. Floating on top of the overflow cap is a water cap device. This water cap device breaks the force of the pumped water and diverts it downward into the grow-bed.

YES - the pump runs 24/7 - as this is the best way to run pumps most efficiently.

YES - some algae will develop from time to time. Just undo the set screws and clean the caps from time to time.

ACTION 1 --

Pull the parts together.

PARTS --

1 - 3-in Dia PVC Cap Fitting -- Item #: 22686 | Model #: 3P06

http://www.lowes.com/ProductDisplay?partNumber=22686-676-3P06&langId=-1&storeId=10151&productId=3446746&catalogId=10051&cmRelshp=req&rel=nofollow&cId=PDIO1

1 - Charlotte Pipe 3-in dia PVC Cap Fitting -- Item #: 23407 | Model #: PVC 00131 1000

http://www.lowes.com/pd_23407-1814-PVC+00131++1000___?productId=3357828&pl=1&Ntt=3+inch+cap+white+drainage+pipe

1 - LASCO 24 X 1/2-in dia PVC Sch 80 Nipples -- Item #: 56125 | Model #: 205100RMC

http://www.lowes.com/pd_56125-1815-205100RMC___?productId=3381494&pl=1&Ntt=lasco+1%2F2-in+dia+pvc+sch+80+nipples

1 - Gampak 1/2-in Rigid Bushing -- Item #: 55140 | Model #: 47321
http://www.lowes.com/pd_55140-15527-47321_0__?prod...

3 - #8-32 x 3/4-in Pan-Head Stainless Steel Spanner-Drive Standard (SAE) Machine Screws

http://www.lowes.com/pd_162075-37672-3576___?produ...

3 - #8-32 x 1 -in Pan-Head Stainless Steel Spanner-Drive Standard (SAE) Machine Screws http://www.lowes.com/pd_162075-37672-3577___?prod...

3 - #8 Stainless Steel Standard (SAE) Nylon Insert Lock Nuts

http://www.lowes.com/pd_455299-37672-829712___?pr...

TOOLS --

5/32-in Twist Drill Bit
http://www.lowes.com/pd_689758-70-DWA1210___?productId=50413696&pl=1&Ntt=5%2F32+drill+bit

7/32-in Black Oxide Twist Drill Bit -- Item #: 84079 | Model #: DW1114 G

http://www.lowes.com/pd_84079-70-DW1114++G___?productId=3422732&pl=1&Ntt=7%2F32+drill+bit

Vermont American 21670 Size 1/2 x 13 NC Tap 27/64-inch Drill Bit Combo
http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=search-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=Vermont+American+21670+Size+1%2F2+x+13+NC+Tap+27%2F64-inch+Drill+Bit+Combo+http%3A%2F%2Fwww.amazon.com%2FVermont-American-21670-64-in...

3/8-in Cordless Drill
http://www.lowes.com/pd_83529-70-DCD710S2_1z0wcj4_...

ACTION 2 --

In center of cap drill a 1.25 inch hole and tap it.

ACTION 3 --

Place "Yellow" cap on top of "White" cap drill 3 - 5/32 inch holes just inside the inter ridge of the "Yellow" cap in triangle pattern -- Drill through each cap for matching holes

Drill out the holes just created in the "Yellow" cap with the 7/32 bit to maka larger holes

ACTION 4 --

Drill 3 - 5/32 holes in triangle pattern around the 3 inch base cap "WHITE" -- Place holes about 1/2 inch up from open end of cap.

Screw in 3 - #8-32 - 3/4 inch into the holes just created. These will serve as positioning set screws to help keep the 1/2 inch delivery pipe centered in the OVERFLOW pipe.

ACTION 5 --

Screw the 1/2 inch riser pipe into the opening in the center of the cap - screw on the bushing to hold in place.

ACTION 6 --

Use 1 inch #8-32 screws.

Place nuts on screw ends - might need nuts on top of "WHITE" cap if a lot of pump vibration is occurring

Top cap should be free to move a little bit to allow water to be escape from under the cap.

ACTION 7 --

Place DRAIN GUARD over the drain pipe.

PROCESS IMPROVEMENTS:

At anytime improvements to this build can be made. These improvements can and will take many different forms. When new tricks are learned or better parts are sourced changes will be made. Updates will be made at aquaponics DIY Automation Blog and the new ideas - parts or changes will be updated in this Instructable. So please send in your ideas and modifications and design changes can and will be made if they are of value to others interested in this project.

.

Step 5: DRAIN GUARD -- GROW-BED -- Part of Aquaponic Balcony GARDEN

DRAIN GUARD allows for a number of things to be prevented and providesmaintenance features to the system as well.

Root Clogging Preventer Mechanism - this is the problem no one talks about much in aquaponics - roots clog everything - unless you plan for the problem. The Drain Guard and grow-bed Drain work together as a full functioning mechanism that can mechanically break root penetration into the grow-bed drain.


SO HOW DOES IT WORK:

The basic concept is that the DRAIN GUARD AND DRAIN PIPE rotate in a clock-wise direction. The rotation action breaks off any roots the have penetrated the two areas. The design of the DRAIN GUARD and DRAIN PIPE allows for this rotation.

ADDITIONAL ROOT PROTECTION:

Removing the 2 inch pipe cap allows for a 1 1/2 inch pipe to be run down the inside of the 2 inch DRAIN GUARD this action will cut off any roots that have gotten by the rotation maintenance process. The 1 inch DRAIN PIPE can be scraped in the same method just talked about for the 2 inch DRAIN GUARD, but using a 1/2 pipe.

ACTION 1 --

Pull the parts together.

PARTS:

12 inch PVC schedule 40 pipe

LASCO 2-in Dia PVC Sch 40 Coupling -- Item #: 23902 | Model #: 429020RMC

http://www.lowes.com/pd_23902-1815-429020RMC___?productId=3307894&pl=1&Ntt=2+inch+pvc+coupling

Charlotte Pipe 2-in dia PVC Cap Fitting -- Item #: 23406 | Model #: PVC 00131 0800

http://www.lowes.com/pd_23406-1814-PVC+00131++0800___?productId=3357826&pl=1&Ntt=2+inch+pipe+cap

TOOLS --

Dremel Multi-Max 16-Piece 2.5-Amp Oscillating Tool Kit
http://www.lowes.com/pd_521302-353-MM30-01___?pro...

DEWALT 5/16-in Cobalt Twist Drill Bit -- Item #: 689763 | Model #: DWA1220

http://www.lowes.com/pd_689763-70-DWA1220___?productId=50413706&pl=1&Ntt=5%2F16+drill+bit

1.25 -in Forstner Bit

http://www.lowes.com/pd_306160-70-PC1015___?produc...

3/8-in Cordless Drill

http://www.lowes.com/pd_83529-70-DCD710S2_1z0wcj4_...

ACTION 2 --

Drill 5/16 holes on two sides of 12 2 inch PVC pipe -- cut slits on the opposite sides between the holes created above.

ACTION 3 --

Place the 2 inch guard pipe just completed in ACTION 2 into the 2 inch SXS coupling.

ACTION 4 --

Drill 1.25 inch hole in center of 2 inch pipe cap - might need to be filed a little to fit around 1 inch drain pipe

ACTION 5 --

Place drilled out pipe cap into 2 inch DRAIN GUARD open end

ACTION 6 --

Place over DRAIN pipe - 2 inch coupling will fit around the 1 inch PVC Lock fitting and rotate freely.

PROCESS IMPROVEMENTS:
At anytime improvements to this build can be made. These improvements can and will take many different forms. When new tricks are learned or better parts are sourced changes will be made. Updates will be made at aquaponic DIY Automation Blog and the new ideas - parts or changes will be updated in this Instructable. So please send in your ideas and modifications and design changes can and will be made if they are of value to others interested in this project.

Step 6: SENSORS -- GROW-BED -- Part of Aquaponic Balcony GARDEN

The DS18B20 is a very common and standard sensor found in almost all arduino projects. Just do an Google search about if you have no idea what it can do or how to use it.

This Sensor is found in the Fish Tank and Grow Bed of the Balcony Garden. It is joined in each container using a cable gland that makes the connection watertight. The probes feed into the RJ-45 housing where connections are made that allow the sensors to be passed on to the micro-controller for processing and data display in where in the world (if using the IoT version of this garden). Make sure you use a 4.7ohm resistor (PULL-UP configuration) with these probes. See directions below and also learn more about this probe at: DIY Aquaponic Automation Blog

LEVELS OF TESTING:

First level: First of test is to determine the HEX code of the individual probe. Make sure you write down the HEX giving off by the "Finder" Sketch below. This HEX code will be used in the system wide test for temperature in both the Fish Tank and Grow Ben in latter testing of wires and sensors. Second Level: This is a Sketch that will use both HEX code from the first level above. You will need to replace the HEX code in the Sketch with your on HEX code or you will get no readings and be presented with an error when checking for the temperatures in the Fish Tank and Grow Bed.

PLEASE VISIT THIS INSTRUCTABLE FOR CONSTRUCTION OF THE SENSOR: DS18B2O-Temperature-probe

PINS on Sensor:

1. VCC - 5 volt source (red wire)

2. Data - (signal) -- yellow - white - blue - green - orange wire depends on where you buy them and from whom

3. Ground (black wire)

Collect all the parts

A. Vktech DS18b20 Waterproof Temperature Sensors Temperature Transmitter (5pcs) http://www.amazon.com/Vktech-DS18b20-Waterproof-T...

B. PG7 Waterproof Connector Gland Black for 4-7mm Diameter Cable --

http://www.amazon.com/Vktech-DS18b20-Waterproof-T...

ACTION - 1

Using the 27/64-inch Drill Bit -- drill hole on the sensor side of Fish Tank and Grow Bed.

See instruction sets for the Fish Tank and Grow Bed for the exact placement of the cable glands.

ACTION - 2 Insert cable gland in to drilled hole in Fish Tank and Grow Bed.

ACTION - 3 Place Cable Gland Nut on outside of Fish Tank and Grow Bed and seal with sealant

VERY IMPORTANT --- TEST -- TEST -- TEST -- TEST

This cannot be stressed enough --

Test sensors when you purchase them

Test sensors after each action to insure the connections are working and the test code returns correct results.

Should the tested sensor not give data output then corrections need to be made before moving forward to next action.

Again TEST - TEST - TEST - will save much time in the long run.

CODE TO TEST SENSOR & DETERMINE HEX CODE OF EACH PROBE:

<p>// This sketch looks for 1-wire devices and<br>// prints their addresses (serial number) to
// the UART, in a format that is useful in Arduino sketches
// Tutorial: 
// <a href="http://www.hacktronics.com/Tutorials/arduino-1-wire-address-finder.html" rel="nofollow"> <a rel="nofollow"> http://www.hacktronics.com/Tutorials/arduino-1-wi...</a>></p><p>#include </p><p>OneWire  ds(8);  // Connect your 1-wire device to pin 8</p><p>void setup(void) {
  Serial.begin(115200);
  discoverOneWireDevices();
}</p><p>void discoverOneWireDevices(void) {
  byte i;
  byte present = 0;
  byte data[12];
  byte addr[8];
  
  Serial.print("Looking for 1-Wire devices...\n\r");
  while(ds.search(addr)) {
    Serial.print("\n\rFound \'1-Wire\' device with address:\n\r");
    for( i = 0; i < 8; i++) {
      Serial.print("0x");
      if (addr[i] < 16) {
        Serial.print('0');
      }
      Serial.print(addr[i], HEX);
      if (i < 7) {
        Serial.print(", ");
      }
    }
    if ( OneWire::crc8( addr, 7) != addr[7]) {
        Serial.print("CRC is not valid!\n");
        return;
    }
  }
  Serial.print("\n\r\n\rThat's it.\r\n");
  ds.reset_search();
  return;
}</p><p>void loop(void) {
  // nothing to see here
}</p>

CODE WILL REPORT OUT TEMPERATURE OF FISH TANK AND GROW BED:

<p>// This Arduino sketch reads DS18B20 "1-Wire" digital<br>// Balcony Unit - IoT - aquaponics --  AGponics.com Temperature Sensors Testing Sketch.
// Ver.05.10.2015
// Tutorial:
// <a href="http://www.hacktronics.com/Tutorials/arduino-1-wire-tutorial.html" rel="nofollow"> <a rel="nofollow"> http://www.hacktronics.com/Tutorials/arduino-1-wi...</a>></p><p>#include 
#include </p><p>// Data wire is plugged into pin 3 on the Arduino
#define ONE_WIRE_BUS 8</p><p>// Setup a oneWire instance to communicate with any OneWire devices
OneWire oneWire(ONE_WIRE_BUS);</p><p>// Pass our oneWire reference to Dallas Temperature. 
DallasTemperature sensors(&oneWire);</p><p>// Assign the addresses of your 1-Wire temp sensors.
// See the tutorial on how to obtain these addresses:
// <a href="http://www.hacktronics.com/Tutorials/arduino-1-wire-address-finder.html" rel="nofollow"> <a rel="nofollow"> http://www.hacktronics.com/Tutorials/arduino-1-wi...</a>></p><p>DeviceAddress Grow_Bed = { 0x28, 0x3A, 0x28, 0x41, 0x05, 0x00, 0x00, 0xA0 };
DeviceAddress Fish_Tank = { 0x28, 0xE9, 0X23, 0x41, 0x05, 0x00, 0x00, 0x4D }; 
// DeviceAddress Other_If_Needed = { 0x28, 0x59, 0xBE, 0xDF, 0x02, 0x00, 0x00, 0x9F };</p><p>void setup(void)
{
  // start serial port
  Serial.begin(115200);
  // Start up the library
  sensors.begin();
  // set the resolution to 10 bit (good enough?)
  sensors.setResolution(Grow_Bed, 10);
  sensors.setResolution(Fish_Tank, 10);
  //sensors.setResolution(Other_If_Needed, 10);
}</p><p>void printTemperature(DeviceAddress deviceAddress)
{
  float tempC = sensors.getTempC(deviceAddress);
  if (tempC == -127.00) {
    Serial.print("Error getting temperature");
  } else {
    Serial.print("C: ");
    Serial.print(tempC);
    Serial.print(" F: ");
    Serial.print(DallasTemperature::toFahrenheit(tempC));
  }
}</p><p>void loop(void)
{ 
  delay(2000);
  Serial.print("Getting temperatures...\n\r");
  sensors.requestTemperatures();
  
  Serial.print("Grow Bed is: ");
  printTemperature(Grow_Bed);
  Serial.print("\n\r");
  Serial.print("Fish Tank temperature is: ");
  printTemperature(Fish_Tank);
  Serial.print("\n\r");
  // Serial.print("Other_If_Needed is: ");
  // printTemperature(Other_If_Needed);
  // Serial.print("\n\r\n\r");
}</p>

MEDIA PROBE

The MEDIA PROBE is not a common or standard sensor found in any arduino projects. But it is very simple in concept and design. If you do a Google search you will find a lot of information on many different designs of this same concept. So you will get the general idea in short order once you research it a little bit. This Media Probe is found in the Grow Bed of the Balcony Garden.The Media Probe feeds into the RJ-45 housing where connections are made that allow the Media Probe signal to be passed on to the micro-controller for processing and data display in where in the world (if using the IoT version of this garden).

THINGS TO KNOW ABOUT THE MEDIA PROBE: Make sure you use a 10 ohm resistor with these switches. This is "ANALOG" read sensor - so be aware of this fact. The Media Probe returns a range of readings of between 0 and 1023 -- the read depends on moisture level with in the Grow Bed. When a reading of 1023 is read the Grow Bed water level has totally covered the Media Probe contact points. Readings of less than 1023 let you know that the moisture within the Grow Bed is less than full in relation to the Media Probe points.

The Media Probe is constructed from to Stainless Steel screws.

WIRES on Sensor:

1. RED - 5 volt source use a (red wire)

2. SIGNAL -- Yellow Make sure you learn how these operate before connecting these probe in to a system. -

GROUND is connected to the Signal wire through a 10 ohm resistor

Collect all the parts

A. #8-32 x 1 -in Pan-Head Stainless Steel Spanner-Drive Standard (SAE) Machine Screws http://www.lowes.com/pd_162075-37672-3577___?prod...

#8 Stainless Steel Standard (SAE) Nylon Insert Lock Nut

s http://www.lowes.com/pd_162075-37672-3577___?prod...

ACTION - 1

Drill 2 5/32 inch holes for the Media Probe in the Grow Bed

ACTION - 2

Screw #8-32 1 inch Pan Head Screws into #8 Nylon Nuts making sure that the tapered end is on Head of Screw side - flat Nuts goes on inside of Grow Bed.

ACTION - 3

Insert Screw - Nut assembly in to drilled holes See the instruction set for the Grow Bed for more details regarding the Media Probe for the Grow Bed.

IMPORTANT --- TEST -- TEST -- TEST -- TEST

This cannot be stressed enough --

Test sensors when you purchase them

Test sensors after each action to insure the connections are working and the test code returns correct results.

Should the tested sensor not give data output then corrections need to be made before moving forward to next action.

Again TEST - TEST - TEST - will save much time in the long run.

CODE TO TESTING THE SWITCH:

<p>// Sketch to determine values for MEDIA PROBE<br>// MEDIA PROBE = MP</p><p>int MP = 0;
int MP_val;</p><p>void setup()
{
  Serial.begin(115200);    // open serial port
 }</p><p>void loop() {
  MP_val = analogRead(MP);   // read value from MEDIA PROBES
  Serial.print("MEDIA PROBE value is:      ");
  Serial.println(MP_val);
  delay(1000);
  Serial.println();
}</p>




<p>PROCESS IMPROVEMENTS:<br>At anytime improvements to this build can be made.  These improvements can and will take many different forms.  When new tricks are learned or better parts are sourced changes will be made.  Updates will be made at <a href="http://www.rik94566.wordpress.com" rel="nofollow" style="font-family: Menlo , Monaco , monospace , sans-serif;font-size: 13.5px;">aquaponic DIY Automation Blog</a>and the new ideas - parts or changes will be updated in this Instructable.  So please send in your ideas and modifications and design changes can and will be made if they are of value to others interested in this project.</p>

Step 7: TRANSITION BLOCK -- GROW-BED -- Part of Aquaponic Balcony GARDEN

TRANSITION BLOCK function is to cover sensor wiring and allows the transition and connections of the sensors and helps to prevent water intrusion into the wiring connections. Should water penetrate and collect around the connection points the sensors will not work.

ACTION 1 --

Pull parts and tools together.

PARTS

4.5 x 3.5 inches -- Foamed PVC Sheets

https://www.tapplastics.com/product/plastics/cut_t...

4 - #8-32 x 1.25 -in Pan-Head Stainless Steel Spanner-Drive Standard (SAE) Machine Screws

http://www.lowes.com/pd_450245-37672-828482___?productId=4263705&pl=1&Ntt=%238-32+x+1.25-in+pan-head+stainless+steel

6 - #8 Stainless Steel Standard (SAE) Nylon Insert Lock Nuts
http://www.lowes.com/pd_455299-37672-829712___?pro...

4 - 2 X 3/8 Wood Screws Phillips / Flat Head / Full Body / Steel / Zinc

http://www.amazon.com/Wood-Screws-Phillips-Steel-Carton/dp/B001NQBSHE/ref=sr_1_11?s=industrial&ie=UTF8&qid=1441381637&sr=1-11&refinements=p_item_length_string-bin%3A3%2F8+inches

4 inches -- Royal Mouldings Limited Less Than 1 x 4-in x 8-ft Pre-Finished Pvc Board

Item #: 209620 | Model #: 07318

http://www.lowes.com/pd_209620-1487-07318___?productId=3339716&pl=1&Ntt=pvc+board

TOOLS

7/8-in Forstner Bit -- Item #: 94820 | Model #: PC1009

http://www.lowes.com/pd_94820-70-PC1009___?productId=3047769&pl=1&Ntt=porter-cable+7%2F8-in+forstner+bit

1/4-Inch by 1/4-Inch Shank Forstner Drill Bit

http://www.amazon.com/Freud-FB-001-4-Inch-Shank-Forstner/dp/B00004RK4N/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1441382469&sr=8-1&keywords=1%2F4+forstner+bit

1/8-in Cobalt Twist Drill Bit -- Item #: 689756 | Model #: DWA1208

http://www.lowes.com/pd_689756-70-DWA1208___?productId=50413692&pl=1&Ntt=1%2F8+bit

5/32-in Cobalt Twist Drill Bit Item #: 689758 | Model #: DWA1210

http://www.lowes.com/pd_689758-70-DWA1210___?productId=50413696&pl=1&Ntt=5%2F32+bit

7/32-in Black Oxide Twist Drill Bit -- Item #: 84079 | Model #: DW1114 G

http://www.lowes.com/pd_84079-70-DW1114++G___?productId=3422732&pl=1&Ntt=7%2F32+bit

Dremel Drill Bit Set -- Item #: 179434 | Model #: 628-02

http://www.lowes.com/pd_179434-353-628-02___?Ntt=dremel+drill+bit&UserSearch=dremel+drill+bit&productId=1207193

3/8-in Cordless Drill
http://www.lowes.com/pd_83529-70-DCD710S2_1z0wcj4_...

Dremel 220-01 Rotary Tool Work Station

http://www.amazon.com/Dremel-220-01-Rotary-Tool-Station/dp/B00068P48O/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1441382872&sr=8-1&keywords=dremel+tool+drill+press

ACTION 2 --

Lay out the BLOCK for holes.

ACTION 3 --

Drill 3/64 hole in upper left corner of the Block and Cover Plate.

ACTION 4 --

Align and screw in the #2 - 3/8 Flat head screw in the holes created in ACTION 3.

ACTION 5 --

Trim off the extra Cover Plate material from around block to match up with Block.

ACTION 6 --

Drill and add the 3 other Cover Plate positioning screws.

ACTION 7 --

Use 1/8 inch bit and drill holes through the block at layout locations marks.

ACTION 8 --

Turn Block over -- drill with the 1/4-Inch Forstner Bit at the 6 locations - only go into the Block the depth of the body of the bit.

ACTION 9 --

Center Block on DRAIN side of tote - right under handle at top of tote.

ACTION 10 --

Using the lower-right 1/8 as a pilot hole -- drill 1/8 hole through tote side.

ACTION 11 --

From inside tote screw in the #8-32 X 1.25 inch Stainless Steel screw

on outside thread Nylon Nut onto screw end and tighten fully.

When tightened very tight there will be no leaks.

Make sure to remove any extra plastic drill fragments so the screw and nut will seal.

Should water leak from this screw on the outside at any time - just seal with Lexel and the problem will go away.

ACTION 12 --

Repeat ACTIONS 10 & 11 -- 3 more times for each corner of the block.

ACTION 13 --

Drill out the 4 corner holes with a 7/32 bit - this will allow the Block to slide on to the mounting screws and over the nylon nuts and sit flush against the tote body.

ACTION 14 --

Mount the Block onto the grow-bed using the mounting screws as guides -- the block will sit flush with the side of the grow-bed because of the 1/4 holes on the back side of the block created in ACTION 8

ACTION 15 --

Using 1/8 inch bit drill and the Block as a guide -- Make the triangle configuration of holes to duplicate the ones in the center of the Block -- the grow-bed pattern will match the Block pattern if done correctly.

ACTION 16 --

Use 7/32 bit and drill out center 2 holes.

ACTION 17 --

Drill with the 7/8-Inch Forstner at the only 1/8 inch hole left on the Block.

ACTION 18 --

Attach the Cover plate to the Block -- Drill with the 7/32 bit from the back side of the Block at the center holes through the block and Cover Plate.

ACTION 19 --

Attach completed Block Assembly with 4 nylon nuts using the mounting screws

The Block Assembly will fit tightly against the grow-bed.

PROCESS IMPROVEMENTS:
At anytime improvements to this build can be made. These improvements can and will take many different forms. When new tricks are learned or better parts are sourced changes will be made. Updates will be made at aquaponic DIY Automation Blog and the new ideas - parts or changes will be updated in this Instructable. So please send in your ideas and modifications and design changes can and will be made if they are of value to others interested in this project.

Step 8: SENSOR MOUNTING -- GROW BED -- Part of the BALCONY GARDEN

In order for sensors to perform correctly they need to be installed and leak proof. Using the correct hole sizes and sealant is a very good idea. If water should penetrate the Transition Block make it way to the inter-connections points sensors will stop working and need to be replaced. At any time sensors not report readings all the connections need to be checked and TESTED to determine signals are being send and received.

ACTION 1 --

Pull parts and tools together.

PARTS:

1 - Transition Block created in STEP 7

1 - DS18b20 Waterproof Temperature Sensor

http://www.amazon.com/DS18b20-Waterproof-Temperature-Sensors-Thermistor/dp/B00CHEZOLC/ref=sr_1_16?ie=UTF8&qid=1441577217&sr=8-16&keywords=ds18b20+sensors

2 - #8-32 x 1.75 -in Pan-Head Stainless Steel Spanner-Drive Standard (SAE) Machine Screws
http://www.lowes.com/pd_115214-37672-828485___?Ntt=%238-32+x+1+3%2F4-in+pan-head+stainless+steel&UserSearch=%238-32+x+1+3%2F4-in+pan-head+stainless+steel&productId=4185017#8-32+x+1+3/4-in+pan-head+stainless+steel

6 - #8 Stainless Steel Standard (SAE) Nylon Insert Lock Nuts

http://www.lowes.com/pd_455299-37672-829712___?pr...

PG7 Waterproof Connector Gland Black
http://www.amazon.com/Black-Plastic-Waterproof-Connectors-Glands/dp/B00841YHHY

TOOLS:

4000 High Performance Rotary Tool

http://www.dremel.com/en-us/Tools/Pages/ToolDetail.aspx?pid=4000#.VezW6xFViko

654 1/4" Straight Router Bit

http://www.dremel.com/en-us/Accessories/Pages/ProductDetail.aspx?pid=654

Vermont American 21670 Size 1/2 x 13 NC Tap 27/64-inch Drill Bit Combo
http://www.amazon.com/Vermont-American-21670-64-inch-Drill/dp/B000BQSJDI

ACTION 2 --

Reverse nuts so small end is faceing screw head.

Screw nuts on to 1.75 inch #8-32 screws all the way to the head.

Solid connection is made between nut and screw head.

ACTION 3 --

Start Screw & Nuts in center holes on the inside of grow-bed.

Screw all the way - until screw & not are solid against the grow-bed container.

ACTION 4 --

Add nuts on outside grow-bed and tighten firmly.

NO water should be able to leak through

If it does just apply Lexel adhesive to the outside nuts and plastic.

ACTION 5 --

Drill out the only 1/8 hole left in the group - Use 27/64 bit.

ACTION 6 --

Tap hole created in ACTION 5 with 1/2 x 13 NC Tap.

ACTION 7 --

Apply adhesive or silicone to threads of cable gland to seal the connection.

ACTION 8 --

Thread head part of cable gland through hole on inside of grow-bed.

Screw on nut on outside of grow-bed.

ACTION 9 --

Pull DS18B20 cord through cable gland for about 8 inches is hanging out.

ACTION 10 --

Make sure DS18B20 cord install looks like this inside the grow-bed.

Seal goes inside the gland housing.

Tighten nut to gland housing.

ACTION 11 --

Leave about 18 inches of cord inside the grow-bed for positioning of Temp probe in the growbed.

ACTION 12 --

Trim off outer jacket of DS18B20 cord back to cable gland opening

BE VERY CAREFUL NOT TO KICK THE WIRES AT ALL

VERY IMPORTANT

ACTION 13 --

Replace Transition Block -- it will fit over the cable gland nut and wires will be exposed.

ACTION 14 --

Asembly the Dremel and Cover Plate for next STEP and 1/4 router bit.

ACTION 15 --

Route hole in Transition Block Cover Plate.

ACTION 16 --

Place Cover Plate over Transition Block -- pull DS18B20 wire bundle through hole created in STEP 15.

PROCESS IMPROVEMENTS:
At anytime improvements to this build can be made. These improvements can and will take many different forms. When new tricks are learned or better parts are sourced changes will be made. Updates will be made at aquaponic DIY Automation Blog and the new ideas - parts or changes will be updated in this Instructable. So please send in your ideas and modifications and design changes can and will be made if they are of value to others interested in this project.

Step 9: RESISTOR TERMINALS -- GROW-BED -- Part of Aquaponic Balcony GARDEN

Resistors are very important to sensors working in all systems. They are usually added or designed into the sensors. The grow-bed sensors require resistors be added at some point in the wiring and sensor connection process. In this case the resistors are being place closed to the sensors that require them. There are many ways to connect resistors to sensors. Everyone has a way or their own way to accomplish this task. Not all of them are easy to use or replaceable. Both of these characteristics are very important for this build. The solution for the grow-bed is a a very sound design and allows for parts and sensors to easily be replaced should a malfunction occur (which they do).

ACTION 1 --

Pull the parts together.

PARTS:

12-Position European-Style Mini Terminal Strip - Radio Shack
http://comingsoon.radioshack.com/12-position-euro...

Resistor Carbon Film 10k Ohm 1/4 Watt 5%

http://www.jameco.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/Product_10001_10001_691104_-1

Resistor Carbon Film 4.7k Ohm 1/4 Watt 5% (In Bags of 10 and 100)

http://www.jameco.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/Product_10001_10001_691024_-1

Plasti Dip Synthetic Rubber Coating -- RED / BLACK / BLUE / YELLOW
http://www.tapplastics.com/product/repair_products...

Magic Sculpt Resin - Tap Plastics --
http://www.tapplastics.com/product/mold_making_materials/sculpting_materials/magic_sculpt_compound/110

TOOLS:

Dremel 7700-1/15 MultiPro 7.2-Volt Cordless Rotary Tool Kit

http://www.amazon.com/Dremel-7700-1-15-MultiPro-7-...

Dremel EZ406-02 1 1/2-Inch EZ Lock Rotary Tool Cut-Off Wheel and Mandrel Metal Cutting Starter Kit
http://www.amazon.com/Dremel-EZ406-02-Cut-Off-Man...

Pocket Autoranging Digital Multimeter
http://www.adafruit.com/products/850

ACTION 2 --

Make two (2) individual "TERMINAL UNITS" from the larger terminal block that was scourced

ACTION 3 --

Cut out a small amount plastic from of the bottom of the "TERMINAL UNITS" created in ACTION 2 between the individual sections of the "TERMINAL UNIT".

ACTION 4 --

Press resistor into gap created in ACTION 3 - bend wire opposite directions around each terminal section.

ACTION 5 --

Bend resistor wire 180 degrees and insert resistor wire through gap between metal terminal holder and plastic housing - resistor wire will come out the other end. Now bend the end sticking out back on to metal terminal holder and solider for the best connection

ACTION 6 --

Complete the other end of the resistor through the section that was left -- make sure the resistor ends are connecting to individual sections of the "TERMINAL UNITS" and not to the same terminal section - It will only work one way!! If incorrect "TERMINAL UNIT" will not give a reading correctly.

ACTION 7 --

TEST - connection works.

ACTION 8 --

Mix Magic-Sculpt.

ACTION 9 --

Fill in the Terminal Unit gaps with Magic-Sculpt - allow to harden over night

ACTION 10 --

To make things easier color coding is helpful:

DS18B20 needs a "PULL-UP" 4.7K ohm resistor Media Probe needs a "PULL-DOWN" 10K ohm resistor.

Media Probe - Signal "PULL-DOWN" -- 10K ohm resistor (Yellow) -- ANALOG PIN

( - ) Ground (black) "PULL-DOWN" -- 10K ohm resistor

( + ) Positive (red) "PULL-UP" -- 4.7K ohm resistor

DS18B20 - Signal "PULL-UP" -- 4.7K ohm resistor (Blue) - DIGITAL PIN

PROCESS IMPROVEMENTS:
At anytime improvements to this build can be made. These improvements can and will take many different forms. When new tricks are learned or better parts are sourced changes will be made. Updates will be made at aquaponic DIY Automation Blog and the new ideas - parts or changes will be updated in this Instructable. So please send in your ideas and modifications and design changes can and will be made if they are of value to others interested in this project.

VISIT STORE FOR ITEMS TALKED ABOUT HERE:
AGponics Store

BALCONY GARDEN - is featured as a Project in MAKE MAGAZINE - vol 47 starting on page 62

Step 10: SENSOR CONNECTION MAP - GROW-BED -- Part of Aquaponic Balcony Garden

Connection Map will map all the connections that take place between all the parts that make up the Sensor Connections in the grow-bed. This is important to understand as knowing how to trouble shoot and fix Sensor problems in each of the components of the Balcony Garden is an important skill to have.

RJ-45 Jack --

This jack is the connection point to the rest of the system for the grow-bed.

A CAT-5 cable is use to connect back to the RJ-45 Hub that is part of the Grow-Bed Platform.

The RJ-45 jack has capacity for 8 connections. In the grow-bed only 4 are being used.

BLACK - BROWN CAT 5 JACK - connection point

RED - ORANGE CAT 5 JACK - connection point

YELLOW - ORANGE/WHITE CAT 5 JACK - connection point

BLUE - BLUE CAT 5 JACK - connection point


BLACK SINGLE TERMINAL (-) ground -- RJ-45 side

Black wire coming from RJ-45 jack is connected to the Single Black Terminal on one end.


BLACK SINGLE TERMINAL (-) ground -- Sensor side

Black Terminal (-) -- Splits two directions

10K ohm Resistor Terminal Black side of the Transistor Terminal

Black wire from DS18B20 is connected on Sensor side of Single Black Terminal as well

RED SINGLE TERMINAL (+) positive -- RJ-45 side

RED jumper wire from RED Single Terminal is connected to the RED side of the 4.7K ohm Resistor Terminal

RJ-45 jack RED wire connects to one end of RED Single Terminal

Jumper wire is connected at same point as the RED RJ-45 jack wire

RED TERMINAL (+) positive -- Sensor side

Connects to RED side of the Media Probe Sensor. ( It does not matter which screw is used as long as the other one is treated as the SIGNAL side screw connection)

4.7K ohm RESISTOR TERMINAL -- ( BLUE/RED )

RED - RJ-45 side -- RED jumper wire from RED Single Terminal connects here.

BLUE - RJ-45 side -- BLUE wire from RJ-45 jack connects here.

RED - Sensor side -- RED wire from DS18B20 connects here.

BLUE - Sensor side -- BLUE wire from DS18B20 connects here.

10K ohm RESISTOR TERMINAL -- ( YELLOW / BLACK)

YELLOW - RJ-45 side -- YELLOW wire from RJ-45 jack connects here.

BLACK - RJ-45 side -- BLACK wire from BLACK Single Terminal connects here.

YELLOW - Sensor side -- YELLOW wire from the signal screw that makes up on screw of the Media Probe

BLACK - Senor side - Terminates here and is not connected to anything.

PROCESS IMPROVEMENTS:
At anytime improvements to this build can be made. These improvements can and will take many different forms. When new tricks are learned or better parts are sourced changes will be made. Updates will be made at aquaponic DIY Automation Blog and the new ideas - parts or changes will be updated in this Instructable. So please send in your ideas and modifications and design changes can and will be made if they are of value to others interested in this project.

Step 11: SENSOR CONNECTION -- GROW-BED -- Part of Aquaponic Balcony GARDEN

Sensors need to connect to the micro-controller at some point. This can take place either by hard wire connections or wireless. On a system of this size and cost hard wire is the most cost effective. Others can expand on this basic system and develop wireless sensors connections. The technology is now at a level that this is well with in the reach of most Makers. Cost is a factor and takes a higher level of expertise than the average "Aquapon".

ACTION 1 --

Pull parts together.

PARTS:

1 - Leviton 41108-RY5 Category 5 QuickPort Connector, CAT 5, Yellow
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000U3G18M?psc=1&...

1 - Leviton 41089-2WP QuickPort Surface Mount Housing, 2-Port, White, Includes 1 Blank QuickPort Insert

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000LDJEPI?psc=1&redirect=true&ref_=oh_aui_detailpage_o01_s00

5 inches -- Ul1007-1569 24 Awg Stranded Hook Up Wire - BLACK

http://www.jameco.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/Product_10001_10001_734411_-1

5 inches -- Ul1007-1569 24 Awg Stranded Hook Up Wire - RED

http://www.jameco.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/Product_10001_10001_734403_-1

5 inches -- Ul1007-1569 24 Awg Stranded Hook Up Wire - YELLOW

http://www.jameco.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/Product_10001_10001_734405_-1

5 inches -- Ul1007-1569 24 Awg Stranded Hook Up Wire - BLUE

http://www.jameco.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/Product_10001_10001_734414_-1

1 -- 10K ohm Resistor Terminal - created in STEP 7

1 -- 4.7K ohm Resistor Terminal - created in STEP 7

1 - Single Terminal - BLACK - if coated or can be un-coated - cut from 12 Terminal Block

1 - Single Terminal - RED - if coated or can be u-ncoated -- cut from 12 Terminal Block

2 - CRIMP-ON SPADE TONGUES -- Model #: 64-3070 | Catalog #: 6403070

http://www.radioshack.com/telephone-spade-lugs-24-pack/6403070.html

Very small amount --Magic Sculpt
http://www.tapplastics.com/product/mold_making_materials/sculpting_materials/magic_sculpt_compound/110

1 - Leviton R04-41084-00W QuickPort Blank Insert, White

http://www.amazon.com/Leviton-R04-41084-00W-QuickPort-Insert-6-Pack/dp/B000KKNOIA/ref=sr_1_fkmr0_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1441724735&sr=8-1-fkmr0&keywords=Leviton%2C+QuickPort+Snap-In+Blank+Inserts%2C+white%2C+Pack+of+10

TOOLS:

Pocket Autoranging Digital Multimeter
http://www.adafruit.com/products/850

Cable Matters® Punch-Down Impact Tool with 110 Blade

http://www.amazon.com/Cable-Matters%C2%AE-Punch-Down-Impact-Blade/dp/B0072K1QHM/ref=sr_1_15?ie=UTF8&qid=1441724964&sr=8-15&keywords=cat-5+punch+down

ACTION 2 --

Punch down wires to CAT 5 Jack.
TEST wires to make sure connections are working.

BLACK - BROWN CAT 5 JACK - connection point

RED - ORANGE CAT 5 JACK - connection point

YELLOW - ORANGE/WHITE CAT 5 JACK - connection point

BLUE - BLUE CAT 5 JACK - connection point

ACTION 3 --

Prep all wire ends from ACTION 2 for insertion into Terminal connections.

ACTION 4 --

TEST connections to insure conductivity with Multi-Meter.

ACTION 5 --

Apply Magic-Sculpt to lock-in connections and protect contacts from moisture of any kind.

ACTION 6 --

Connect Terminals - follow MAP of Terminal Connections.

Make sure to TEST connections again to insure all connections are working correctly.

ACTION 7 --

Insert RJ-45 jack into housing.

ACTION 8 --

Add blank insert at position 2.

ACTION 9 --

Pull DS18B20 wires through RJ-45 housing - between jack and blank.

ACTION 10 --

Position nylon lock nuts and tighten until housing is held firmly against Transition Block.

ACTION 11 --

Add Magic-Sculpt to opening on the RJ-45 housing.

ACTION 12 --

Connect Media Probe wires from Terminal Blocks as directed in Connect MAP STEP.

Use 2 additional nylon nuts to hold the connectors in place and tight.

It really does not matter which wire goes to which screw - do what works best at this point.

ACTION 13 --

Connect DS18B20 wires as directed in Connection MAP STEP.

ACTION 14 --

Carefully tuck in all terminals and wires into RJ-45 housing free space.

ACTION 15 --

With Magic-Sculpt fill in the open areas of the RJ-45 housing cover.

ACTION 16 --

Carefully position and attatch RJ-45 housing cover to RJ-45 housing base.

TEST - TEST - TEST - TEST the sensors and connections now.

If a any problem reading sensors FIX THE ISSUES NOW!!

ACTION 17 --

Once all connections are TESTED and proven to be working add the mounting nuts and screws to hold the Cover Plate of the Transition Black firmly in place.

ACTION 18 -- OPTIONAL

To protect the Sensor connections form moisture issues Rubberize-IT can be applied to the RJ45 Housing and Transition Block to prevent moisture getting into the assembly. OPTIONAL STEP

PROCESS IMPROVEMENTS:
At anytime improvements to this build can be made. These improvements can and will take many different forms. When new tricks are learned or better parts are sourced changes will be made. Updates will be made at aquaponic DIY Auomation Blog and the new ideas - parts or changes will be updated in this Instructable. So please send in your ideas and modifications and design changes can and will be made if they are of value to others interested in this project.


VISIT STORE FOR ITEMS TALKED ABOUT HERE:

AGponics Store

Step 12: MEDIA -- GROW-BED -- Part of Aquaponic Balcony GARDEN

These descriptions are from Japan Aquaponics Grow-Bed Media Guide.

See their site for additional information regarding grow-bed media.


Expanded Clay Pebbles - a type of Lightweight Expanded Clay Aggregate (LECA)

LECA is a porous clay pellet that expands when wet and forms a dense soil-like layer that roots can easily grow into. Additionally, the pebbles are relatively smooth, making them easy on hands and sensitive roots. Clay Pebbles also have a very high surface area, which gives the beneficial bacteria somewhere to live, enabling it to be a very effective biological filter. It is pH neutral, meaning that it will not affect the water chemistry, thus adversely affecting plant growth. It will also drain freely, aiding in the oxygenation of roots. Hydroton is the most famous brand name for expanded clay pebbles, but recently this company has stopped all production - but alternatives like Canna Aqua Pebbles are almost exactly the same in composition. Clay Pebbles can be bought in various sizes and the larger diameter is normally recommended to avoid clogging. -

See more at: http://www.japan-aquaponics.com/growbed-media-gui...


Lava Rock - ( Pumice Stone )

Lava rock is widely used in many areas due to its availability and cost. In many ways it is natural version of hydroton as it is a lightweight, porous material that exhibits all of the characteristics of hydroton. It is not quite as easy to work with as hydroton as it is usually irregular in shape, and you also have to be careful to ensure that there are no impurities or chemicals present. Lava rock can be up to 90% porous and so initially it may float in your aquaponics system. This is common, but if you let the lava rock soak in the water it should eventually stop floating. -

See more at: http://www.japan-aquaponics.com/growbed-media-gui...


River gravel or Pea gravel

While not as easy to work with as other alternatives, river gravel (gravel from rivers is generally more rounded and friendly on the hands) is a cheap and readily available growbed media. In addition, its higher density enables allows gravel to support taller plants than clay pebbles would be able to. Aquaponics gardeners who cultivate corn and other stalked plants tend to prefer the density of gravel, as well as backyard aquaponics enthusiast who are on a budget. Gravel does not hold water well, is very heavy, and has a much lower surface area than hydroton so it is not able to support bacterial colonies to the same degree - thus lowering its bio-filtration capacity. Gravel should be tested before you put it into your aquaponics system to make sure that is does not contain things like lime. You can take several random samples (different types of stones) and add vinegar to see if it reacts with the stone (It must not). -

See more at: http://www.japan-aquaponics.com/growbed-media-gui...


Perlite / Vermiculite / Sand / Coir / Glass beads
These have all been used as either a complete growbed media - or in addition to one the main ones noted above. In each case you need to be confident that none of these media types will leach anything into your system and so sold pay close attention to where the media comes from. You may find that perlite, vermiculite and sand are relatively small in size and so could cause clogging in your system and may also impede the free flow of water in your growbed. Coir can also cause discolouration of your water and as an organic media will break down over time and may introduce unwanted organisms into your system. You also need to be sure that any of these media is pH neutral and that it will not affect your water chemistry. -

See more at: http://www.japan-aquaponics.com/growbed-media-gui...


Washing the growbed media
There are different schools of thought about whether you should was your growbed media or not. On the negative side, it is a time-consuming, labour intensive activity that generally uses a significant amount of water. On the positive side it improves the quality of the water in your system from the very beginning and it ensures that any bugs or detritus is washed away before it gets in your system. I think that ultimately the choice of whether to wash or not will depend on your personal circumstances. If water is scarce or expensive then there is no real need to wash the media as the water will clear up on its own in a few days or so. If you are buying from a reputable source then you should not need to worry about foreign objects in your media. The truth is that some people wash their media, and some don't but there seems to be no adverse affect on an aquaponic system either way. -

See more at: http://www.japan-aquaponics.com/growbed-media-gui...



ADDITIONAL RESOURCES FOR MEDIA:

Do it yourself.com -- Aquaponics-good-grow-bed-media


Japan Aquaponics -- Growbed Media-Guide

Step 13: MEDIA ZONES -- GROW-BED -- Part of Aquaponic Balcony GARDEN

Picture of media zones - from Murry Hallam - Practical Aquaponics site-

http://aquaponics.net.au/blog/learn-about-aquaponi...

Here is clips from this reference:

Surface or dry zone. --- # 1.

The first 50mm is the light penetration and dry zone. Evaporation from the bed is minimized by the existence of a dry zone. Water waste minimisation is a very important principle in Aquaponics systems.

This dry zone also protects the plant base against collar rot. Additionally, by ensuring that this zone is kept dry, algae is prevented from forming on the surface of the grow bed media. Because this dry zone is present, moisture related plant diseases such as powdery mildew are minimised.

http://aquaponics.net.au/blog/learn-about-aquaponi...

Root zone. --- # 2.

Most root growth and plant activity will occur in the next zone of approximately 150 - 200mm –in this zone, during the drain part of the flood and drain cycle, the water drains away completely, allowing for excellent and very efficient delivery of oxygen rich air to the roots, beneficial bacteria, soil microbes, and the resident earth/composting worms. During the flood part of the cycle, the incoming water distributes moisture, nutrients and incoming solid fish waste particles throughout the growing zone. The worm population does most of its very important work in this zone, breaking down and reducing solid matter and thereby releasing nutrients and minerals to the system.

"Worm Tea”, as it is commonly known, will be evenly mixed and distributed during each flood and drain cycle. “Worm Tea” and the fish are entirely compatible, No possible harm can come to the fish by the distribution of this wonderful nutrient material throughout the Aquaponics System. Solid collection and Mineralisation

http://aquaponics.net.au/blog/learn-about-aquaponi...

Zone - # 3.

This is the bottom 50plus mm of the grow bed. In this zone fish waste solids and worm castings are finally collected. The solid material has been reduced by up to 60% by volume, by the action of the resident garden/composting worms, and microbial action. During each flood and drain cycle, what is left of the solids perkolates down into this zone Further and final mineralisation occurs in this area via bacterial and earth worm activity. Due to the excellent action of the flood and drain cycle, this bottom area is kept “fresh” and vital by the excellent delivery of oxygen rich water during the flood cycle. Some water storage occurs in this bottom zone.

http://aquaponics.net.au/blog/learn-about-aquaponi...

PROCESS IMPROVEMENTS:
At anytime improvements to this build can be made. These improvements can and will take many different forms. When new tricks are learned or better parts are sourced changes will be made. Updates will be made at aquaponic DIY Automation Blog and the new ideas - parts or changes will be updated in this Instructable. So please send in your ideas and modifications and design changes can and will be made if they are of value to others interested in this project.

PROCESS IMPROVEMENTS:
At anytime improvements to this build can be made. These improvements can and will take many different forms. When new tricks are learned or better parts are sourced changes will be made. Updates will be made at aquaponic DIY Automation Blog and the new ideas - parts or changes will be updated in this Instructable. So please send in your ideas and modifications and design changes can and will be made if they are of value to others interested in this project.

Step 14: RESOURCES - GROW-BED -- Part of Aquaponic Balcony Garden

Aquaponic Gardening:

A Step-By-Step Guide to Raising Vegetables and Fish Together Paperback – October 11, 2011 by Sylvia Bernstein Aquaponic Book - good resource

http://www.amazon.com/Aquaponic-Gardening-Step---Step-Vegetables/dp/086571701X/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1441731307&sr=8-1&keywords=aquaponic+books

The Aquaponics Gardening Community A community site with forums, blogs, photos, videos and more for both new and experienced aquaponic gardeners. Let's learn together! Aquaponic Gardening Community
http://community.theaquaponicsource.com/

ASC Magazine Monthly Online Magazine and Trade Publication Aquaponic Sustainable Community
http://aquaponicssurvivalcommunities.com/

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