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studio-input/settling tanks on steroids

updated sun 31 aug 97


Jeff Lawrence on sun 10 aug 97

Veronica was asking about settling tanks:
>Sounds great, but how do you envision dealing with the silting up, both in
>the trough and in whatever the trough is draining into? Asking because I
>will be building a studio on rock, only drainage to our own septic field or
>possibly to settling tanks once I work out how to deal with them.

Hi Veronica,

Here's a "wettling system work in progress" description that may have some
useful stuff for you. I too am one of the metropolitan impaired ...

My sink drains into a bathtub, which goes outside to plastic 55 gal drum
halves linked at the tops with 2" pvc. These then drain into two stock tanks
(this is where the manly comes in!). My hope is that the final stock tank
water will be plenty clean for mop-up. Excess I'll use to water the
plantings the county made me promis to put in as a condition of a business
license (Santa Fe County is very anti-development these days).

Right now its warm, but I'm thinking stock tank heaters in the winter. If I
just build a kiln near it, I could pipe excess heat into it somehow ...
Probably more of a problem for you in BC than for me in solarville. Maybe
some of those mirror systems they used a time or two in Japan to pipe
sunlight to little cottages surrounded by big buildings?

The big advantage for me is the whole system is above ground. THis means no
$$ for backhoes and leach field parts, no bureaucratic hoo haw that comes
with septic permits, and most important, relative ease in cleaning it out
when that becomes necessary. I have this bizarre idea that if I know what
goes into the silt I take out, I ought to be able to make something
worthwhile out of it ... garden tiles? fake slate?

An engineer I know got me a filtration catalog that may have some
refinements (ahem) to the system in it. But I'm still busy getting the basic
systems up at the new place, so that'll probably wait.

Hope some of this is useful.


Jeff Lawrence
Sun Dagger Design
ph/fax 505-753-5913

The Shelfords on tue 12 aug 97

Hi Jeff -
Thanks for the "wettling system" description - I'll be interested to hear
if it works the way you hope. I have a similar critical path in mind, but
possibly flat concrete basins in the crawl space under part of the studio.
(Although we have about 5 acres here, all but 7000 sq. feet of it is more
or less vertical, so I'll have to be a bit neat and tidy about laying the
system out.) That would take care of any freezing problem in the winter,
as we only get a few days to a few weeks of below freezing weather around
here, max. Have to make sure they are reasonably accessible for clean-out,
of course. What a hoot, to think of making something out of the settled
silt - what the hell, we can but try. As mel says - we have problems, we
invent. Right?
- Veronica

>Here's a "wettling system work in progress" description
>My sink drains into a bathtub, which goes outside to plastic 55 gal drum
>halves linked at the tops with 2" pvc. These then drain into two stock

Veronica Shelford
s-mail: P.O. Box 6-15
Thetis Island, BC V0R 2Y0
Tel: (250) 246-1509