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Author Topic: Gravity fed irrigation - any thoughts?  (Read 3591 times)

cloddopper

  • Joined Jun 2013
  • South Wales .Carmarthenshire. SA18
Re: Gravity fed irrigation - any thoughts?
« Reply #15 on: June 01, 2018, 10:13:41 pm »
Fitt NTS Wintech Hose is the dogs B.....s .

 I purchased a 30 mtr length over 10 years ago & put it on an open hose reel that gets full sun for most of the day . It's been left on over night several times with a trigger rose conected but has never leaked or come off a the Hozelock connectors .  It does occasionally kink but not often if it is under pressure .
 Once in a while I've used some warm soapy ( fairy liquid ) water & a miracle fibre cloth to wipe it down to remove any dark marks or muck then I've rinsed t off … it's still as bright a yellow as the day I brought it .
Strong belief , triggers the mind to find the way ... Dyslexia just makes it that bit more amusing & interesting
Voss Electric Fence

arobwk

  • Joined Nov 2015
  • Kernow - some say it's in England !
Re: Gravity fed irrigation - any thoughts?
« Reply #16 on: June 02, 2018, 06:28:44 pm »
Fitt NTS Wintech Hose is the dogs B.....s .

Then I guess it was a really really good find!   Other lengths and variant Fitt hose also offered by Screwfix (all at good prices), but the 50m Wintech coil price is unbeatable VFM me thinks.
« Last Edit: June 02, 2018, 06:31:12 pm by arobwk »

arobwk

  • Joined Nov 2015
  • Kernow - some say it's in England !
Re: Gravity fed irrigation - any thoughts?
« Reply #17 on: June 06, 2018, 07:19:43 pm »
Wanting to make sure that my chosen clean feeder-IBC for the new irrigation system was, indeed, clean enough, I went for an internal soapy scrub. Umm and oh dear - sticky scum!  Bother (I might actually have uttered a different 6 letter word).  Life is too short (ultimate cleaning will have to wait), so dipped more deeply into pocket to procure 2x "professionally" cleaned IBCs and black ones this time.  Surprisingly cheaper to get from Bristol supplier (inc delivery) than a Cornish supplier.

arobwk

  • Joined Nov 2015
  • Kernow - some say it's in England !
Re: Gravity fed irrigation - any thoughts?
« Reply #18 on: June 13, 2018, 11:12:42 pm »
 An update on my chosen gravity-fed system.
 
The refurb'd black IBCs look like new (used only once perhaps) & clean as a whistle. However, they came with outlet reducers (down to 2") which leaked.  Applied LA-CO Slic-tite compound, but perhaps I didn't apply enough!?  Added some PTFE tape to the paste: the combo worked.
The irrigation system is also great.
The "SqueezeMe" emitters are ingenious:  adjustable for drip rate or sideways stream or, when fully open with good head of water, a static pseudo-sprinkler effect.  (One brief test on my set up produced a forked sprinkle up to about 18" with about 100 degree separation and a close-quarters fan of water to about 3" between the two forks.)
The super-flexy hose is just what I needed:  it makes single-handed extraction from beds (for sequential irrigation of sections) quite easy - just fold/scrunch/bundle and move.  Yes, it kinks, but it also un-kinks real easy.  It is also relatively easy to peel-back the hose off the single-barb joiners when mod's needed.
Now! - I started with a 5 row "spine and ribs" arrangement for each separately fed section (= 10x ribs each at some 15' with 5x emitters per rib), but then I tested a "comb" arrangement (much easier to extract sideways from beds) with 30' emitter lines with 10 on each line.  One section, on 13mm-bore hose, is up to 6 rows (working OK);  another is still just 5 rows and the 3rd section (some way down the hill) is presently just 2 rows on 5mm-bore hose and fed via 1/2" garden hose-pipe with standard 9-10mm bore hose connectors and working OK.  Presently 130 emitters in all.
It shouldn't work very well overall (theoretically), but it does actually work well enough for me and gobbles water readily across the system with water-head ranging from 0.5m to about 2.0m across the system.
I'm happy.  (The 3 parts of the emitters do have to be put together though - each takes just a few seconds, but best done while watching the telly or listening to Radio 4!)
« Last Edit: June 14, 2018, 01:12:59 am by arobwk »

cloddopper

  • Joined Jun 2013
  • South Wales .Carmarthenshire. SA18
Re: Gravity fed irrigation - any thoughts?
« Reply #19 on: June 15, 2018, 12:22:44 am »
A picture speaks a thousand words apparently .. got any pictures of it set up & working?
Strong belief , triggers the mind to find the way ... Dyslexia just makes it that bit more amusing & interesting

arobwk

  • Joined Nov 2015
  • Kernow - some say it's in England !
Re: Gravity fed irrigation - any thoughts?
« Reply #20 on: June 15, 2018, 04:18:51 pm »
@cloddopper - your wish is my command.  I have prep'd 11 pics so there will be 3x posts.
Both the 13mm and 5mm sections are presently connected via standard hose pipe connectors.  (Had to raid two Tesco stores to get enough components, plus spares, at lowly price of £0.50 a pop.) 

Any garden hose feeder-line extensions are joined with a simple hose compression-coupler (not shown).  All other joins (e.g. at manifold and at section connections are doubled-up compression/click-lock arrangements:  the reason is that, while my flexy 13mm irri'-system hose can be inserted and clamped into a standard hose connector, it's a bit fiddly and the chosen arrangement offers instant connection/disconnection.  (I'm devising a 13mm bore connection solution for the 13mm sections.  However, I'm not entirely convinced necessary for me;  on my sloping land with good head of water, drip rate is still pretty high even with emitters set to minimum drip position.)
I offer pics of drip, jet and sprinkler/fan emitter outputs:  in-betweenee settings are possible.  (I did take videos, but I'm not good with uploading and linking to vids ont' web.)
I also show the bundled 13mm and 5mm runs:  I've decided 6x bundled emitter lines is a bit cumbersome to deal with for relocation, so I think 5 emitter lines per section will be my max henceforth.
Also, willows will indeed grow upside down - almost certainly not one that I planted myself  :-\ .  Plus I offer a pic of why I'm going to all this trouble.
« Last Edit: June 15, 2018, 05:40:27 pm by arobwk »

arobwk

  • Joined Nov 2015
  • Kernow - some say it's in England !
Re: Gravity fed irrigation - any thoughts?
« Reply #21 on: June 15, 2018, 04:21:35 pm »
4 more pics

arobwk

  • Joined Nov 2015
  • Kernow - some say it's in England !
Re: Gravity fed irrigation - any thoughts?
« Reply #22 on: June 15, 2018, 04:26:37 pm »
The remaining pics

arobwk

  • Joined Nov 2015
  • Kernow - some say it's in England !
Re: Gravity fed irrigation - any thoughts?
« Reply #23 on: June 15, 2018, 05:01:02 pm »
To add;  the willows are already responding to the many cubic metres of mains water I've lavished on then so far, but may I have some decent rain soon, pretty please!?  Of course, I also need to capture some (any) rain to reduce mains water usage ... when I've managed to properly clean original IBCs!  (I think I have a plan.)   
« Last Edit: June 15, 2018, 09:43:48 pm by arobwk »

cloddopper

  • Joined Jun 2013
  • South Wales .Carmarthenshire. SA18
Re: Gravity fed irrigation - any thoughts?
« Reply #24 on: June 23, 2018, 11:58:14 pm »
If you using individual dripper for each plant , thick carboard with a hole for the plant to poke through helps reduce evaporation around the plant . Either peg the carboard down or put some earth on the edges .. it also helps keep weeds at bay for a year or so .
Strong belief , triggers the mind to find the way ... Dyslexia just makes it that bit more amusing & interesting

arobwk

  • Joined Nov 2015
  • Kernow - some say it's in England !
Re: Gravity fed irrigation - any thoughts?
« Reply #25 on: July 07, 2018, 12:53:20 am »
Just received SW Water's bill for the past 6 months.  I've used circa 8 cubic meters of mains water since I started irrigating a week or so back.  SWW, for lack of better info', have allocated 4 cu.m to period Dec-Mar and 4 cu.m for Apr-Jun.  Heh ho - Dec-Mar cu.m price was higher than for 2nd period, but I'm not about to challenge for sake of a few quid. (Best let sleeping dogs lie!). 
Note to self:  submit regular water meter readings from now on since they are only reading the meter every 6 months!

Intended rain-water capture will obviously help idc, but I only have 6x IBCs.  Even I can do the maths and I'm not about to create a large lake.  Anyone know of a good rain-chant?  :) 
« Last Edit: July 07, 2018, 12:56:13 am by arobwk »

ojfarmer

  • Joined Jul 2018
Re: Gravity fed irrigation - any thoughts?
« Reply #26 on: July 29, 2018, 08:38:42 am »
arobwk

Thanks for directing me to this thread from my earlier post in the 'Introduction' section....

Very useful info. in here from both yourself and cloddopper - thank you.  I am going to get in touch with Tank Fed Irrigation next week (haven't spoken with them yet), but I have a couple of basic questions which you may be able to comment on, based on your experience;

1) do you find that the pressure (and flow) drops in the 5mm line as you move away from your IBC?  I would expect a wider supply pipe to help minimise the pressure drop.

2) have you investigated running a 'timer' to control valve opening?  My plot is some way away from where I live, so I'm not there all the time - and I'm therefore looking for a simple timer device to regulate when the gravity feed will be on/off.  I have seen 'Rain Barrel' timers available on the web, including a solar powered one, but that only seems to be supplied from USA.

A bit more detail on my own application; I have a total of 4 greenhouse beds each approx. 1.2mx19m.  Thinking about going for a 'starter' set-up from Tank Irrigation to supply one of these beds; I can then tune it & extend, as necessary.


Many thanks.

cloddopper

  • Joined Jun 2013
  • South Wales .Carmarthenshire. SA18
Re: Gravity fed irrigation - any thoughts?
« Reply #27 on: July 29, 2018, 11:07:29 am »
Just received SW Water's bill for the past 6 months.  I've used circa 8 cubic meters of mains water since I started irrigating a week or so back.  SWW, for lack of better info', have allocated 4 cu.m to period Dec-Mar and 4 cu.m for Apr-Jun.  Heh ho - Dec-Mar cu.m price was higher than for 2nd period, but I'm not about to challenge for sake of a few quid. (Best let sleeping dogs lie!). 
Note to self:  submit regular water meter readings from now on since they are only reading the meter every 6 months!

 
Intended rain-water capture will obviously help idc, but I only have 6x IBCs.  Even I can do the maths and I'm not about to create a large lake.  Anyone know of a good rain-chant?  :)

 I did my specially written TAS one whilst standing naked ( don't go there )  on the edge of The Black Mountain early on Friday 27 th of July  Friday morning , has it worked yet ?  :roflanim:
Strong belief , triggers the mind to find the way ... Dyslexia just makes it that bit more amusing & interesting

arobwk

  • Joined Nov 2015
  • Kernow - some say it's in England !
Re: Gravity fed irrigation - any thoughts?
« Reply #28 on: July 29, 2018, 05:01:18 pm »
I did my specially written TAS one whilst standing naked ( don't go there )  on the edge of The Black Mountain early on Friday 27 th of July  Friday morning , has it worked yet ?

Well the proof is in the pudding.  How can I/we all thank you enough cloddopper for your intrepid Black Mountain venture (but I'm hoping that was before the walkers were up and about). 
While the chatty Aldi check-out assistant blamed it all on me this afternoon, as we discussed the weather and my relief at seeing large amounts of precipitation, I did mention your assistance:  in response,  "Well, I hope you and .. um .. cod shopper have a nice day now and did you notice our offers on frozen fish?" 
[I'm not going to tell whether that is true or not - I'll let you decide]


« Last Edit: July 29, 2018, 06:59:25 pm by arobwk »

arobwk

  • Joined Nov 2015
  • Kernow - some say it's in England !
Re: Gravity fed irrigation - any thoughts?
« Reply #29 on: July 29, 2018, 10:00:40 pm »
 @ojfarmer
 
Firstly, re your Q2, I have not considered a timer and cannot offer any really useful comment:  however, I'm sure I've seen various UK offerings (albeit have not paid much attention to).  Whether for mains water or gravity fed systems and then whether mains fed or battery powered electrically I couldn't say.
 
As to your Q1, I'm struggling to give a definitive answer about pressures/flows.
Your greenhouse situation will be very different to my sloping field situation.  [To note:  my willow sapling spacings are presently 3' along rows and 4' between rows - I will interplant at 2' between rows in due course.  Also, if I had thought I would actually need to irrigate my sapling plots routinely I would have run my inter-plot service lanes across the slope and set my rows down the slope, but I did the opposite:  therefore my irrigation sections run off a feeder spine running down-slope with rows running across-slope.]
However, for what it's worth ...
I have gone through various irrigation section set-ups (testing as I go) and the farther I move sections down the hill, the greater the water-head/pressure obviously. I started out assuming 13mm hose was the way to go, but am now more inclined (for my purposes) towards maximising 5mm hose usage.
 
My moveable irrigation sections are set up with a down-hill spine feeding either 5 or 10 across-hill rows - sometimes feeding 30' rows in a comb arrangement and sometimes feeding 15' rows in a spine and ribs arrangement.  I continue to experiment, but at the moment everything sort-of works.

To further ease relocation of my original, wholly 13mm hose sections, I have now separated the 13mm hose spine from the 13mm hose rows and use 5mm hose to re-connect the 13mm spine to each 13mm row - that shouldn't work should it? - but it does, albeit with row hoses taking a little extra to time to be primed across a 50-plant section.
Other irrigation sections:
I also run sections with 5 or 10 rows of 5mm hose (with 15' rows) off a 13mm spine.
I also have a set-up for apple plots that is wholly 5mm in 25-plant irrigation sections: I connect 2x 25 plant sections to a split hose-pipe feed to irrigate 50 plants at a time (it could manage more without doubt).
 
And all gravity fed using standard 1/2" garden hose to connect irri' sections to IBCs (since I've chosen to not move IBCs) as I move irri' sections down the hill and with plenty of standard hose-pipe connectors in between (with their restricting 9-10mm bore).

Optimised? - no. Works? - well enough for me.
 
I attach a pic of a Liquid Lever set-up in (I believe) Africa that they sent to me.  I believe it gives an indication of how a 13mm set-up (at least) might be used for annual crop beds - I noted the doubled-up feed (at bottom-right of pic) to another bed beyond.
 
Of course I have to say, oj', that your situation is very different to mine.  As much as I like the components and flexibility of the Liquid Lever system, you might want to talk to them first about your longer term need to supply 4x greenhouses
« Last Edit: July 29, 2018, 10:04:30 pm by arobwk »

 

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