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I am in the process of installing a new line that will cirle two ponds. One of the ponds I have not built and still in the planning stage. My goal is to have boats moving on the pond being pulled by an under water chain/cable and being driven by a hidden electric motor. Here are my initial questions, which I am sure will generate more questions.

I will be concreting the bottom of the pond so I can cement the sprockets/wheels in place. Do I want to use a sprocket and chain system or a cable and wheel system?

Any suggestions on the type of electric motor and gearing? I will have it hidden by a structure, but not completely weather proof. I am in Southern California so no concern about freezing weather.

Concerns about koi fish (ranging in size from 10" to 16" in length)? Lubercation?

If you have done this in your layout, I would love to see some photos. Thank you in advance for your help.

Paul
 

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Hey Paul,
Great idea! I think it will have to be well thought out (which is obviously the case, since you are posting about it,) but I think it will be worth it.
In my humble opinion I would imagine the cable and pulleys route would work out best for several reasons.
-It will be easier to change the speed of the rotation by more readily available pulley sizes without having to worry about chain and sprocket size/spacing.
-The cable, especially after a little time in the pond, will blend in much better below the surface than a chain would.
-Stainless steel cable is MUCH cheaper than chain.
-Cable is much lighter than chain, so it won't weight the boat down near as much.
You mention coy, which I'm sure you realize have very acidic waste. You were probably intending to use all stainless steel materials, but I thought I would mention it. It would help, if possible, to isolate the motor/gearing from the water surface with a barrier of some sort, whether aluminum, stainless or at least wood.
Last of all, a belated welcome to MLS, the best place to find info for the best hobby!:)" border=0>
Keep us posted, I can't wait to see how this progresses!
Matt
 

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Concrete in a pond for fish is a real hassle. You need to insure it is totally sealed to keep from releasing nasty stuff to your fish.



I think I would look into mounting your hardware into natural rocks. You can drill holes and either use a safe epoxy or drill through and bolt and nut it together. There is also Tapcon and similar screws. I think stainless steel or plastic hardware is called for in the water for longer life.

Sorry, I have no ideas on the boat.

Be sure to keep us posted on how it turns out.

Michael
 

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Legoland does this with pulleys and fishing line, works for them....( if it aint broke...)
 

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I have a little skimmer area which hasn't worked out for anything, but this has potential. I might suggest having the motor above the water in a structure over this skimmer area. The motor could then turn a wheel in the water which would then turn another wheel in the pond. From the wheel in the pond you could string the cable around any number of pulleys with the boats on tethers attached to this cable. Sounds interesting. I agree about the concrete being toxic or changing the pH. On a simpler note, just move the filter output to a point which makes currents going around.
 

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I've used rubber roofing for the last 3 ponds. I also use clay tile tubing as tunnels so the fish can hide from, coons. I then can sit plants on those tubes.
 

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I was told that the rubber roofing had some chemicals that are harmful to fish. This, of course, told to me by a salesman of pond supplies.;) Have to consider the source, I suppose.

Matt
 

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It might depend on the brand or type of rubber roofing material. Not all types would necessarily be made of the same material or in the same manner.
 

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Maybe you could use a large long o-ring instead of a chain or cable. Also, barnmichael is right fresh concrete can drastically lower your ph how much depends on how much you add. It could be a problem....some reefers...( people who keep salt water coral aquariums not pot smokers /DesktopModules/NTForums/themes/mls/emoticons/hehe.gif ) use portland cement and crushed coral to make artificial reefs to keep from buying harvested wild coral. They usually let it cure in water for four or five weeks doing water changes three times a week. But corals are way more sensitive to dirty water than carp. check your ph and if needs be add some vinegar. I think I would just epoxy them to some flat stones. Sorry for being long winded.
 

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I think I'd go with some fairly large diameter pulleys and fishing line. Just mount the pulleys to something heavy and set them on the bottom. Mount the motor to a pretty long shaft so it's out of the water and disguise it with a water lilly or somesuch. I think you'd want a gear motor or something so it's pretty slow, unless, of course, you want speed boats.
 

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Interesting topic...and I've seen the boats at LegoLand...and the teathers to the boats...but not what was down below. How do you get the fishing line teather to the boat to pass through a pulley on the main drive cable?
 

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Paul,

You're in Corona. You owe it to yourself to go to LegoLand and see theirs in action. It is indeed cool to see their stuff at work under the water! (Pictures just won't do it justice.) BTW, they have entire cities in scale (with moving vehicles and trains) with lots of cool ideas to draw on.
 

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Posted By Mike Reilley on 04/15/2008 12:00 PM
Interesting topic...and I've seen the boats at LegoLand...and the teathers to the boats...but not what was down below. How do you get the fishing line teather to the boat to pass through a pulley on the main drive cable?

As I recall, the boat tethers are connected to an underwater rope/cable that snakes around the bottom of the lake. The cable is taut and goes around "wheels" that are grooved (much like a fan belt is snaked though the engine pullies). In this way, the teather does not have to go through a pully. It mearly rides around the pully wheels attached on the cable as the cable passes between the pully wheels.
 

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Have you explored using boats with self-contained motors under radio control? That would obviate the need for underwater hardware.

Mark
 

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Discussion Starter #19
WOW!!! This is the second time I have asked for advice on this forum and the response has been incredible. I like the ideas and I hope to get started in the next month before it gets too hot here. The remote control boats is a great idea, but I am always busy running three other lines and making sure my three kids are not destroying the towns!!!

Thanks again and I will get photos up once I start digging. The pond is going to be 20' long, 5' wide and 3' deep. It should work fine with small boats. A couple years ago I was at the Pomona Fairplex in Pomona, CA and they had moving boats. I am going to visit again since it is closer and a lot cheaper than Lego Land. I did see the layout in Lego Land and :)it is very impressive.

Paul
 

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Posted By lanhardt on 04/15/2008 7:53 PM
WOW!!! This is the second time I have asked for advice on this forum and the response has been incredible. I like the ideas and I hope to get started in the next month before it gets too hot here. The remote control boats is a great idea, but I am always busy running three other lines and making sure my three kids are not destroying the towns!!!
Thanks again and I will get photos up once I start digging. The pond is going to be 20' long, 5' wide and 3' deep. It should work fine with small boats. A couple years ago I was at the Pomona Fairplex in Pomona, CA and they had moving boats. I am going to visit again since it is closer and a lot cheaper than Lego Land. I did see the layout in Lego Land and :)" border=0>it is very impressive.
Paul




I make that to be at most 2244 gallons, if filled to the lip. You won't have room for many koi in that pond.

MArk
 
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