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#431575 12/13/15 11:48 PM
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I have a small stream fed pond (20'x40') in Northern Michigan that is surrounded by mature trees. The pond was made 40 years ago when someone dammed the stream. When I put a canoe in the pond and push a stick in, the muck starts around 24" down and the stick can easily push another 2 to 3 feet into muck. (In other words I've only got 2 feet of water on top of many more feet of muck).

So far I've tried using...

Mechanical removal- with the limited entry width the excavator could only use a machine with a limited reach that couldn't get to the worst of the pond (the middle).

Pumps- Started with a rented trash pump that was very efficient in moving water but not the accumulated muck. The screen would just clog with small twigs and leaves (and muck). Then rented a Diapragm pump. Worked much better but was still slow and I ended up pushing and rubbing muck into the stiff 4" intake hose (with grate). Probably moved 4-5 cubic yards total over several days.

Bacteria and aeration- Removed some muck and I could see the shoreline better but I have concluded that the feet of muck in the middle (4 feet???) will never be affected by this method. If I can get rid of the central muck I might be able to maintain it well in the years to come with bacteria and aeration.

I've also considered...

Hiring sediment removal co- Emailed a pro who comes with divers and pumps. They wanted $2500 a day. My biggest worry with them is that they would quickly remove what they could along with all the water and then wouldn't be able to continue. (They need water to mix with and remove muck).

Tilapia- I like this idea, however, the springs that start the stream are only 50 yards upstream so the pond stays very cold year round. The 7 Rainbow trout I put in love it so I'm guessing Tilapia wouldn't.

Inventing a DIY dragline of sorts- I have a couple hundred feet of thick steel cable left over from a zipline. I've thought of draining the pond (there are pipes going under the dam that can be opened) and making a new zipline over the pond. I would then attach a line and some sort of bucket scoop to the zipline pulley so that it could easily be lifted and "zipped" down hill to be emptied. It would be a two man operation and a lot of manual labor to be sure.

Lastly, I've still been researching pumps. I always feel that if I'm considering paying thousands of dollars to pro sediment removers maybe it makes sense to just invest in equipment myself. (Who doesn't like new toys?!) Wondering if a submersible shredder pump moved around over time might do the trick??? Something like this? http://www.northerntool.com/shop/tools/p...content=Default

Thoughts?


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pond when last drained.jpg
Last edited by palmerdad; 12/14/15 12:01 AM. Reason: adding pic
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A new member here and I'm very interested in this topic. Last year my wife and I bought a home that shares a pond with 2 neighbors. Ours is spring fed with no visible outlet except an overflow pipe to a stream. Like yours, the pond is old (30-40 yrs.) with a substantial muck layer. The budget is tight as is access to the pond, so hiring a dragline or large excavator isn't feasible. I'm researching our options to improve the depth and health of the pond.

Thanks!


Share a 1.7 acre, kidney shaped pond with 2 neighbors; Stocked with bass and bluegill
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Being a commercial diver, I believe they would be using the equivalent of a small gold dredge or water lift if you will. If you have a semi trash pump and know your way around PVC fittings you could make one. Being that your water depth is shallow you could operate it and never get your head underwater.



This is a 4" model it takes around 355 GPM. Scale it down to a 2" model and it will only require 55 GPM.

You can then just make a box near shore that can be excavated and let the waste material dump into there. It will then drain water back into your pond. For your application and pond size I feel a 2" would serve you best 3" max for price and efficiency.

If you wish to know more let me know, I don't always get on here regularly. The whole concept works off the Venturi Principle. Not sure If I am allowed to link youtube videos in posts so until I can double check posting rules I will hold off on that.

Hope this helps.

Last edited by Diver Cody; 12/15/15 08:39 PM. Reason: I am working on my punctuation :)

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Is the Venturi principle the same as an air lift or am I confusing the two? Can you explain more how the trash pump and the venturi work together? (Does the trash pump occupy the middle break in your diagram?)

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zuren, if you will do a web search for "gold dredge using a trash pump" you will come up with lots of ideas. Add the word "utube" if you mostly want videos. The one Diver Cody mentions likely will also come up.


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The venturi in this case would be where the bend is, for the sake of using the same picture above. In the lower picture to the left hand side is the suction side. The trash pump's discharge is not shown but connects at the bend where the smaller pipe in the picture double backs on itself. Wait one let me find a better picture for the ahhh haa moment.



Ok now the water coming in will be pressurized that water once it dissipates slightly to it's new opening size will also have to draw extra water in to try and "equalize" itself.

Airlift's do also use a venturi effect only in a different way.

This gentleman is better at explaining it than I am.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Na9ORhYjvJU

Apparently embeded videos are broken so just posting the links now.

Last edited by Diver Cody; 08/17/16 08:12 AM. Reason: Broken Video Embed

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Brilliant. I'm following now. Why don't they teach this kind of stuff in school?!?!

Since my pond is shallow, 2' of water, is there a reasonable limit to which you would be able to pump up? I assume the venturi's ability to pick up solids lessens with more head... or maybe not? Also with such a shallow area would the introduction of air in addition to the pumped water have an affect? I'm assuming that the air needs to be introduced below the water line to achieve it's affect? (But again maybe not!)

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palmerdad - You mentioned that you have tried using a trash pump before with limited success. Did you have a different setup from what is being suggested here?

The pond I share is roughly 1.75 acres and I have no idea how deep the muck may be. The deepest hole is supposed to be 15' according to my neighbor. I have not found anything deeper than 11-12' with the portable depth finder on my canoe.

From what I'm reading at many sources, sucking the silt out and dewatering on shore may be the best approach for me. Getting heavy equipment in would tear up everyone's yards. The suction carries away the gases and toxins as well. The work could be divided between 3 guys who could pick away over time and could possibly be accomplished over a summer with the ability to perform maintenance when needed with no additional expense other than time and gas.

My question to the forum is what is the most cost efficient method of dewatering the silt for a DIYer? Some people discuss a box or trap to allow the silt to separate and water to run back into the pond. Since we have a minimal inflow to the pond, keeping as much water in as possible would probably be best. I've seen dewatering bags of various sizes. Do all of these zip open for clean-out and reuse?

Thanks!


Last edited by zuren; 12/16/15 02:04 PM.

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The dredge system linked depending on pump size can be used at any depth, with a larger pump the more stuff that can be moved by it(the main limiting factor is your suction size) a 4" rock will not go up a 2" hose. If someone was so inclined to visit ebay and search gold dredge suction they could by chance see basic flow requirements. That model of water lift is what they use for gold dredging as long as the pipe is enclosed and you have enough pressure, you can move the material as far as you want. If you have multiple trash pumps you can also make a booster mid-way on you material handling hose.

As for making a separator/catch basin I also am an avid DIY kind of person I would have to recommend a silt fence. have never personally tried it but it is what that product is designed for retain silt and put water into drainage areas.

DISCLAIMER: I do not gold dredge, I do however use airlifts and waterlifts on a regular basis for excavating around pipelines(part of my job). This can be dangerous work do not put your head underwater unless you know what you are doing and preferably have a helmet on or at a minimum someone to call the local dive team to get your body.


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Originally Posted By: Diver Cody
The dredge system linked depending on pump size can be used at any depth, with a larger pump the more stuff that can be moved by it(the main limiting factor is your suction size) a 4" rock will not go up a 2" hose. If someone was so inclined to visit ebay and search gold dredge suction they could by chance see basic flow requirements. That model of water lift is what they use for gold dredging as long as the pipe is enclosed and you have enough pressure, you can move the material as far as you want. If you have multiple trash pumps you can also make a booster mid-way on you material handling hose.

As for making a separator/catch basin I also am an avid DIY kind of person I would have to recommend a silt fence. have never personally tried it but it is what that product is designed for retain silt and put water into drainage areas.

DISCLAIMER: I do not gold dredge, I do however use airlifts and waterlifts on a regular basis for excavating around pipelines(part of my job). This can be dangerous work do not put your head underwater unless you know what you are doing and preferably have a helmet on or at a minimum someone to call the local dive team to get your body.


Thank you for the continued information! I'm trying to envision what this overall setup would look like so please let me know if my list below sounds right. I do not plan to be IN the water and hope much of this work can be performed standing from shore, in a boat, or on a swim platform with the suction nozzle attached to a pole. Our deepest hole is 15 ft. with most of the pond at 3-5 ft.:

1. Buy a 3" trash pump. Most economical options seem to move 250-300 GPM. Budget - $400ish.

2. Buy a 3" suction nozzle for gold dredging. Budget $100-150.

3. Buy adapters to take the 3" outlet hose size down to the 1.5" NPT size at the suction nozzle. Most suction nozzles I'm seeing have this 1.5" connection. Does this sound correct? Budget - $?.

4. Buy enough 3" dredge hose for A)the outlet-to-suction nozzle section and B)from the back of the suction nozzle to shore. Looks like a person could have as much money into hose as into the pump.

5. Buy or build a dewatering solution on shore (dewatering bags, sediment trap, silt fence, etc.)

6. Build or buy your work platform (row boat, swim platform, etc.). I have a small row boat but I think a floating platform would be best.

7. Buy floats for the hose. I'm assuming we want the hose delivering muck to the shoreline floating?

My rough estimate is that a person could have a small, economical dredging setup for $1000-1500 to maintain a 1-2 acre pond. Am I off base with the picture I'm drawing?

Thanks!





Last edited by zuren; 12/17/15 11:22 AM.

Share a 1.7 acre, kidney shaped pond with 2 neighbors; Stocked with bass and bluegill
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The hose does not need to float as it is a water lift not an airlift. Even with airlifts a floating hose will not deliver material to it's destination as well as a progressive slope. Think reverse plumbing as you are moving material uphill instead of down. If you are moving material a long distance you have to be cautious not to "over feed" the hose.

If you wish to cut down on the overall cost you do not need a flexible hose the entire length. Just get some regular PVC pipe and connect into that. The flexible collapse proof hose just makes it so you can manipulate the "working end". All you need to accomplish once you have gotten the material to this point is keep it contained and heading the direction you want.

As both liquids (water being introduced and surrounding natural pond water)are the same density the one with the material in it is slightly heavier which is why you have to be careful not to over feed it. All that will do is result in clogs and sometimes you may have to back flush the system other times it requires a partial take down.

Finally you are correct in the cost of hoses it is what will get you financially they do cost more than the pump often. Perhaps if you can locate a company nearby that uses suction style hoses they may have some worn or old ones that you could take off their hands for a more reasonable price. Most of the 3" suction hoses appear to run from $80-$120 for 20' when shopping take into account if it comes with fittings or not as fittings also can get pricey.

Apologies Palmerdad for semi jacking your thread but it still seems to be on topic.


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The green flexible hose is fairly stiff. If you want more flexibility get fertilizer hose.

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Originally Posted By: Diver Cody
Apologies Palmerdad for semi jacking your thread but it still seems to be on topic.


Yes palmerdad, I don't want to hijack your thread by talking about my pond. I'm hoping my questions and the answers relate to your situation.

Last edited by zuren; 12/17/15 01:48 PM.

Share a 1.7 acre, kidney shaped pond with 2 neighbors; Stocked with bass and bluegill
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So how did this turn out?
I just bought a property with a quarry and I am interested in building a similar set up, except mine will have to pump 40' deep.

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