Formal Spillway Waterfall help


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Old 06-01-07, 10:16 PM
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Formal Spillway Waterfall help

Hi all!

I'm currently rebuilding a Koi Pond which was originally a 4' x 4' x 3' deep pond inground. There was a ~50 gallon preformed pond offset 2' above and to the side which provided the waterfall to the bottom pond. Besides the fact that the pond was way to small for the 4 16" koi that occupied it, the liner started to leak after 15 years.

Well, my neighbor just happened to install a pond and offered to babysit my fish while I rebuild mine.

I rented a jackhammer and ripped out everything. My plan is to utilize the existing hole in the ground and raise the pond level above ground with a 6' x 6' x 2' tall cinder block wall around the existing hole to provide more volume and surface area....as well as increasing the depth to ~5 ft. I'm building this in the corner of my backyard against an existing block wall which is ~6' in height. I'm looking for examples on incorporating formal spillway (clean sheet)waterfalls with cinder block construction.

Any ideas?

Thanks!
 
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Old 06-02-07, 02:56 PM
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One, your size pond is still too small for your koi. Two, are you planning on concrete for the project?
Three, build the upper without the preformed pond. Build the upper larger than the fish but stay around 18 deep using the same principle as the fish pond. Use this upper as a plant filter so that all the water going to the fish pond is filtered by the plants.

As you dialogue more can be said.
 
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Old 06-03-07, 07:43 AM
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Ponds do need good depth and the 5' you are going to is great. It helps the koi escape predators, they can overwinter in the deep, it helps stabilize water temperatures and the depth helps their swimming.

Keep in mind that fish swim forward through the water which takes horizontal space. It's like permanantly locking you in a 8' x 8' prison cell. A high ceiling is nice but you are not going to be getting much exercise in that tiny space. You can keep koi alive in a small space, but they need room to swim and put on bursts of speed to develop good musculature and form. I hate to see mature koi and even goldfish in a pond that does not have at least 10'+ for one of it's horizontal dimensions. A small pond is good for you to see the fish but does not let thier personality and natural behavior come out.

Koi when startled will "jump to warp speed" (stealing from Star Trek) when startled. They will make a quick hard turn, dive & turn and will be 10' away in the matter of a second or two. I like to see a pond that gives them at least enough room to perform this basic natural startle behavior
 
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Old 06-03-07, 11:01 AM
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Thanks for the replies!

Pilot Dane, Primereef,

To generalize the overall size issue... After I posted the original topic a few days back, I removed the original liner and took an actual measurement of the existing pond. 3'x2.5'x3'D. Or a whopping ~170 gallons. With the improvements, I estimate the new pond will be ~710 Gallons.

I would love to make the pond as big as possible (even bigger as I generally have a tendancy to overdo things), but am limited in size due to the placement of the pond. Its located in the front right corner of the block wall where the wall comes up the side of the house. The distance between the wall and the house is approx. 9'. The distance from the front of the wall to my A/C compressor is approx. 9' as well. So as you can see I am really limited in space. I'll post some pics later today of the area.

Trust me, nobody feels worse for these fish then me. But I feel they will be doing much better going from 170 gallons to 710 gallons. What makes the situation more dire presently is that they are temporarily in a 100 gallon preformed pond purchased from Lowes. I'm stressing to get this complete so I can get them out of there. I'm also considering selling a few of the Koi to make the room more sufficient in the new pond.

Primereef,

I was planning on using a liner in the existing 2.5'x3'x3'D hole and bringing it up to just under the cap block at the top of the cinderblock wall to seal the whole thing.

As far as the filtration system, I'm planning on using a submersible pump feeding a pressurized filter. From there I plan on discharging to the spillway (clean sheet) waterfall.

Any thoughts on how to construct the waterfall using cinderblock? I was thinking of one of the 'Calpump Falls' located on this page ---> http://www.azponds.com/Bio%20Waterfalls.htm#atlanticfalls set in the cinder block wall.

Any thoughts?
 
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Old 06-04-07, 05:13 AM
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What are you going to have supporting the cinderblocks? The water will probably want to push them out.
 
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Old 06-09-07, 08:18 PM
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I just finished pouring a rebar reinforced 12"D x 12"W footer around the pond. When I lay the cinderblock, the cells will be rebar reinfoced and filled. This should be solid enough to contain the 2' of water.
 
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Old 06-10-07, 05:55 PM
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How are you going to waterproof the block wall? (I'm thinking of doing a cement block pool.)
 
 

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