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#404937 03/22/15 06:26 PM
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I want to build a stream that uses water from the pond that is pumped up a 70-80 ft hill and runs back down into the pond. I don't have power close so I would like to build a solar setup to pump the water. Do any of you solar guys know where I can get an inexpensive solar pump setup?
I found some 12 volt shallow well pumps that are low volume. I was thinking of using 2 in parallel. I would like to get between 10 and 20 gpm.


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Just to be clear Cap, Is that a 70 to 80 feet elevation change or run?


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Is the hill actually that high or is it 70-80 ft on th trip back to the pond?


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I'm guessing it's about 70-80 ft in elevation and probably 200-300 ft laterally. When it comes to pumps I figured only the head pressure mattered.


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IMO yer right. The run is small potatoes compared to the height.


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That is quite a bit of head pressure if it is in fact that much vertical lift. The length of run will create minor friction, effectively adding only about a foot or two of head pressure. That much head pressure and desired flow may require a multi-stage deep well type pump in about a 1.5 to 3 HP range...and a lot of solar energy to run.

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You could probably run a 3hp 230Vac 3 phase motor from 8 panels in 2 strings if you did it correctly, but it may not be cheap.

ABB is releasing their Solar Pump Drive in the USA next month, and it's not as bad as you may think, price wise.

I've had the pleasure of corresponding with their Engineers over the past few weeks, and they filled in the fog.

Still need to learn more tho.

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How much flow do I need in order for trout to spawn? If I could do that I would be supper happy. Would intermittent flow (flow during daylight hours) work for trout spawn?


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Originally Posted By: captwho
How much flow do I need in order for trout to spawn? If I could do that I would be supper happy. Would intermittent flow (flow during daylight hours) work for trout spawn?


That's a deep question. Flow for aeration of the eggs is primary for success. I have seen brown trout try to spawn in a small tributary w 10 gpm.


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Your stocking hatchery rainbows right?


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Yes, I'm stocking hatchery RBT. Does this matter? Where else would you get RBT? (that is not a sarcastic question, I'm being serious)


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wild caught naturally reproducing RBT would be the other option if it is legal there. Hatchery RBT can tend to be "mutts" as local trout addvocate speaks about our local state stocked trout. The theory is these mutts are so far off breed and manipulated spawn times for generations that they are not much good in the wild. Talking to local Game and fish they say that the characteristics breed into hatchery trout are not good things for wild reproducing trout. Hatchery trout eggs are best if larger and dont clump, and wild spawned eggs are best if just the opposite.

Some times i see active schools of spawn colored ready males in the middle of July up stream in places they shouldnt be. On the flip side there are wild reproducing rainbows that have come from hatchery introduced fish in this area.

We have had trout rbt in our pond/dam for 20 years and never had any natural recrutment. we have a little less than 100 gpm coming in but have a lot of bull rush and other vegetaion that may make getting to the stream diffacult. They put on the make-up and have the body parts but I have never seen them do the dance. 40 years ago there ware wild brook trout, but an angry niebhor with some dinamite fixed that during a drought year.

If you can do your research and see what the history on your trout are or others you can look at getting is. Maybe your local supplier has a good natural recrutment when in the wild. Or maybe you could give them a hand in your creek??


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thank you, I will look into it. I know its a long shot but it would be awesome if I could make it happen. Does anyone have naturally recruiting RBT? If so, what are the conditions?


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Naturally, trout enjoy constant water flow in the streams. Biologically that is also tied into the life cycle for reproduction, I would try and talk with my state biologists and see what is the minimum amount of water flow needed to mimic the area. MT, ID, WA, CO, ND all have trout, but they all require different parameters for their life cycle.


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Is your water fall going to run year round?


An SDSU student is giving a theses presentation on wild spawn trout from a hatchery stocked lake on Wednessday evening. I will report back what I learn as I am interested too.! Curious how these recently added beaver dams are affectING it also.


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10 gpm is going to be no faster than a water hose. A 1/2" water hose runs 10 gpm at 60 psi.

I had one 75gpm pump on my water falls then added a second with an in pond pump of 80 gpm for a total of 230 gpm just to get it to look good enough with a 5 foot top rock.

Your going to need some major volume to be happy let alone make trout happy.

Cheers Don.

Look very close at brush-less if your really want solar. Look at adding wind to the mix. Much more power faster with wind. The days its not sunny you have wind.


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This is a topic I am very interested in myself. I will be trying it with wild caught Brookies though. Going to try to capture all the water from several different seeps and two springs and bring it all in to the pond at one point. Hopefully help O2 levels as well. From what I have heard Brookies are my best shot at trout that will spawn. Luckily, there's a top secret mountain pond not far from us full of wild Brooks. It is fed by some kind of underground seep as you can't see any water coming in and very little flowing out but man it has some unbelievable Brooks in it and they spawn every year! Bad part is it isn't the easiest way in the world to stock fish.

Last edited by wbuffetjr; 03/31/15 09:41 AM.

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The Kid gave his theses speech tonight, On wild reproducing Rainbow Trout in Deerfield Res.

His study has been going on for two years. They have the same 22 spots on the inlet creeks they shock for 100 meters once a month. When they first did it they chipped all the wild rainbow trout they caught and clipped an annal fin. They found the fish stay in the creek for 3 years then go down to the resavoir. They only grow 8-10 inches in the creek in that amount of time. Then they come back up stream to spawn. Depending on the strain of hatchery stocked fish (they try to spwan with the wilds) the stockers Dilutute the "spawn" and less of the eggs hatching.

The Kid suspected that it was "Irwin Alies" strain that naturally reproduces, ( dont have a clue how to spell that strain of trout). All their trout eggs come from "the Federal Hatchery System." I dont think you and I can get them, and not sure if we want them, maybe under better conditions they grow better. The did shock one 21 inch spawner wild trout.

Good luck finding a wild reproducing trout.


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Originally Posted By: fishm_n
Good luck finding a wild reproducing trout.


Fortunately I have that part covered!! Little hidden mountain lake, crystal clear water and full of these guys. This one was a hair shy of 17" and I have seen bigger ones just never been able to catch one.



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I understand 10 gpm is not very much water but I hope to create an illusion by creating small pools of water all the way down with small falls in between. It will look a lot bigger with out the flow. Does anyone know the minimum depth and width and flow for rainbows to spawn? The hatcheries buy pre-fertilized eggs so they don't even spawn their own stuff. They couldn't answer my questions.


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Originally Posted By: captwho
I understand 10 gpm is not very much water but I hope to create an illusion by creating small pools of water all the way down with small falls in between. It will look a lot bigger with out the flow. Does anyone know the minimum depth and width and flow for rainbows to spawn? The hatcheries buy pre-fertilized eggs so they don't even spawn their own stuff. They couldn't answer my questions.


I have done a little digging on Brook Trout and found a ton of research articles out there. Some of them are veryyyyy scientific and detailed with all kinds of measurements. I am willing to bet you can find one with some flow numbers in it.


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