Sunday, May 18, 2014

Installing the DIG DRIP IRRIGATION SYSTEM in the garden.

 Click here for Video:
Video on the Dig Irrigation Installation

I bought this online after researching local places to buy and found it would have cost 2Xs what I paid. Here is the web site: it is called a DIG irrigation system.
 This is the beginning of the system. First we have installed a way to have a separate hose attached to the faucet with a two way turn-off valve. This is so we can water by hand if need be.
Next we installed an inline micron filter. These are the best, they keep any particles from clogging the fine holes in the drip line and it is so easy to clean,you just unscrew the cap at the end and flush the debris out, then screw the cap back on and you are done!
The next piece is the pressure regulator that is required by the system to run at 25PSI (pounds per Square inch).

 We then hooked up a 4 way shutoff valve to separate the 4 zones. This is necessary because you cannot have more water pass through the drip than your water system supplies. To calculate this you must first know the gallons per minute your water system supplies. How we did this was to see how many minutes it takes to fill a 5 gallon bucket. This took us 30 seconds, therefore our well delivers   10 gallons per minute.
The irrigation drip lines we bought put out 1gallon per HOUR each foot. Different plants need different water needs ie: my blackberries are just one row 12" wide so I used one tube, my other rows are 3 feet wide so I am using 2 tubes on those rows.(this also depends on your soil, mine is sandy loam so as you see further down how the water spreads out about 12" and goes deep from there)
So one row is 40 ' long X 2 = 80 feet of drip line.I wanted to keep each zone under 350 ' or 5.8 gallons per minute (350/60 (minutes in an hour)=5.8 )

For the next part of the system we used 3/4 inch drip tubing that delivers the water to the rows.

Here are the parts to complete the system. The top punch tool is what you use to punch a hole to connect the barb connector (brown piece) from the supply tube to the turn-off valve or 1/2" barbed ball valve, that gets connected to the pressure compensating drip line (PCDL) that have the drip holes. The piece that looks like an eight (hose end) is what you use to close the PCDL and the drip tubes at the ends .

I found it easiest to first cut the PCDL about half way between the drip holes at the beginning of the line, this gives you enough room to work with a hollow tube. I then cut a 2 1/2 inch piece of hollow tube to connect the barb connector to the shut-off valve (make sure you connect this with the flow of water in mind, I connected the tail of the shut off towards the drip tube). This is easiest if done first before attaching the the drip tube or the PCDL.
Next on the drip tube, punch a hole and connect the pieces you just assembled (2 1/2" PCDL piece with the shut-off valve)
Then connect the shut off valve to the PCDL.
At the ends of the tubes just bend the tubes through the hose end piece to close off the ends.

Here it is assembled and running!!!!
The total cost was $600.00 with $200.00 for shipping, Total of $800.00. My garden has 14 rows about 40' long and 3' wide. About 1,700 sq ft of bedding area. This cost alot of money but after trying pvc ,over head sprinkler and  a soaker hose system, I know I have spent that much with stuff that did not work. Those systems caused me much loss and aggravation!  I will be adding a timer to the system soon as well.

Friday, May 16, 2014

Installing the gas lines to the kitchen and bathhouse.

 We started the ditches by raking the rock on top of the surface to the side of the trench, giving us room to work and keeping the top rock as clean as possible. We then laid down a tarp where we could put the dirt out of the trench to keep it separate from the top rock.
 The trench runs from the side of the main house where the stove is, from the bathhouse where the on demand hot water heater is, to the propane tank (hidden in the trees where we cannot see it from the circle drive).

 When we first built these buildings, we were told to place conduit from the outside to the inside. We have learned that is NOT code. At each building there needs to be a regulator that delivers the gas straight  into the building. This prevents pockets of gas being vulnerable to exploding.

 We paid a qualified gas installer to do the work. He did tell us that the hot water heater values were installed upside down by someone local that we hired, not a good thing.
 The piping is finished with the regulators in place according to code. Just a bit more smoothing out of rock to finish things up!!!
There is not gas for cooking and hot water!!!!