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Test Kits

Contents:

  1. "Absolutely essential" test kits (M)
    by daveo/omews18.intel.com (David O'Brien) (Wed, 22 Jan 1992)
  2. "Absolutely essential" test kits (M)
    by patti/hosehead.intel.com (Patti Beadles) (Wed, 22 Jan 1992)
  3. Water testing kits
    by greg/enterprise.NoSubdomain.NoDomain (Greg George Area SSE - Midwest Area) (19 Mar 92)
  4. Water testing kits
    by jimh/ultra.com (Jim Hurley) (19 Mar 92)
  5. (General) Unique Water Quality
    by pjs/gvgdsd.GVG.TEK.COM (Peter J. Stonard) (17 Jul 92)
  6. (No Title)
    by ()
  7. Calcium test kits
    by Greg Morin <greg/seachem.com> (Wed, 20 Jan 1999)
  8. Calcium test kits
    by Greg Morin <greg/seachem.com> (Fri, 22 Jan 1999)

"Absolutely essential" test kits (M)

by daveo/omews18.intel.com (David O'Brien)
Date: Wed, 22 Jan 1992
Newsgroup: rec.aquaria,sci.aquaria,alt.aquaria

In article <1992Jan21.205830.2589-at-b11.ingr.com> mcconnel-at-b11.ingr.com (Guy McConnell) writes:
>
>    Other than Ammonia, Nitrite, Nitrate, and PH, what is the general consensus
>opinion of "essential" test kits for reef aquaria?  I am thinking of getting
>test kits for dissolved oxygen, phosphates, calcium (perhaps?), and alkalinity.
>Any others or any of these that I don't need?  Patti?  Anyone?  Thanks!

Get the HACH Calcium test kit, *not* the Lamottes.  As for quality of
the test kits, I'd go with cheap Ammonia and Nitrite kits (ie:
seatest), Accurate pH test kit (ie: something that clearly reads 0.1
resolution), and put the money into Nitrate(L), Oxygen(L),
Phosphate(Lamottes-low range) & Calcium (HACH).  I use a tetra
Alkalinity test kit too.   

Patti has a Silica test kit (Lamottes) and a low resolution Iron test
kit (Lamottes, reads 0ppm, 0.5ppm, and 1.0ppm+).  I don't think a
silica test kit is really necessary, but our water happens to have
lots of it.  You can skip the whole situation by going with RO water.
Lots easier.  I would like to measure Iron to a finer resolution so
I've been looking around.

-- 
Dave O'Brien  (daveo-at-ichips.intel.com)


"Absolutely essential" test kits (M)

by patti/hosehead.intel.com (Patti Beadles)
Date: Wed, 22 Jan 1992
Newsgroup: rec.aquaria,sci.aquaria,alt.aquaria

In article <1992Jan22.170324.26972-at-ichips.intel.com> daveo-at-omews18.intel.com (David O'Brien) writes:
>In article <1992Jan21.205830.2589-at-b11.ingr.com> mcconnel-at-b11.ingr.com (Guy McConnell) writes:

>>   Other than Ammonia, Nitrite, Nitrate, and PH, what is the general consensus
>>opinion of "essential" test kits for reef aquaria?  I am thinking of getting
>>test kits for dissolved oxygen, phosphates, calcium (perhaps), and alkalinity.
>>Any others or any of these that I don't need?  Patti?  Anyone?  Thanks!

(BTW, you've just hit a pet peeve.  It's pH, lowercase p, uppercase H).

Things I think you need for a reef tank: pH, nitrate, calcium, alkalinity.

I don't think ammonia and nitrite are all that important.  They're really
only useful for tank cycling.  Calcium is unnecessary if you don't keep
hard corals or clams.  Dissolved oxygen and phosphate are useful if you think
you have a problem, but probably not necessary otherwise.  Iron is useful if 
you're planning to keep macroalgae.

It could be argued that none of the kits are really a necessity.  It is not
too difficult to judge the condition of a tank by observing the inhabitants.
If calcerous algaes are growing well, clams are growing, etc. you probably
have sufficient calcium.  If all animals appear healthy you probably don't
have an ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, dissolved oxygen, or pH problem.  Excess
algae growth can be a nitrate or phosphate indicator.  If problems occur, then
you can use the test kits as diagnostics.

I have a whole boatload of test kits sitting behind the tank, and they've
proven useful to me in the past.  I rarely use them, however, unless there's
something going on that makes me suspicious.

>I don't think a
>silica test kit is really necessary, but our water happens to have
>lots of it.  You can skip the whole situation by going with RO water.

It's only a partial solution, though.  DI will do better at removing
silica than RO.
-- 
patti-at-hosehead.hf.intel.com |  I don't speak for Intel, nor vice-versa.
   75555.767-at-compuserve.com |
             (503)-696-4358 |  A1: Yes, I'm the one with the big fishtank.
or just yell, "Hey, Patti!" |  A2: A lot, a lot, yes you can see it sometime.


Water testing kits

by greg/enterprise.NoSubdomain.NoDomain (Greg George Area SSE - Midwest Area)
Date: 19 Mar 92
Newsgroup: alt.aquaria

On another subject...

I have gone through several companies water testing kits because
they were not effective. I had the entire line of dry-tab tests
that were supposed to work for fresh and marine tanks. The only
test that was correct was the nitrate test. The pH was the worst
of all, it said that my pH was 8.5 when it was really much lower.

The second tests I tried were the liquid ones made by the people
who make pH up and pH down. These tests gave me different results
each time I used them.

The third tests I have tried and have stayed with are from Tetra-werkes.
These tests are very easy to read and are extremely reliable. They
tend to be a little more complicated than other tests (usually having
2 or 3 bottles instead of 1), but the results are reproducable and
match electronic tests.

Is there a mag that periodically checks these tests to make sure
your tank isn't hosed?

thought you might find this interesting...

greg


Water testing kits

by jimh/ultra.com (Jim Hurley)
Date: 19 Mar 92
Newsgroup: alt.aquaria

In <kshgeaINNcmg-at-cronkite> greg-at-enterprise.NoSubdomain.NoDomain (Greg George  Area SSE - Midwest Area) writes:

[test kits]

>greg

When I started into aquarium study I used the AP test kits -
the dry tab stuff. As I got more involved, I found these tests
to be rather poor, particularly the pH test cannot measure
low ion strength solutions.

I tried some SeaChem tests - expensive
then some Tetra tests - OK, but the nitrate test is too clumsy.
Dupla tests - forget it...

I finally took the advice of others and settled on the LaMotte
tests.

After I became familiar with them, I've found them easy to
use and accurate. By accurate, I mean the CO2 test, Hardness,
and pH tests all jive with each other, my pH probe, and the
Tetra tests. I believe the dissolved O2 test - it seems to be accurate.
The nitrate and phosphate tests seem accurate down to very
low levels.

I don't have proof that some of these tests are accurate, just
some evidence. For example, the SeaChem phosphate test shows my
tap is .1 ppm phosphates, so does the LaMotte. My plant tanks lights
just came on - the dissolved O2 is at 7.5 ppm - sounds OK to me.
Nitrates are at 2 ppm, do a water change, now they are 1.5 ppm.

I'm not about to test the tests, I just want something that
makes sense, and is trustworthy.

LaMotte has been making chemical tests for eons - that's all they do.
They have tests for chemicals I can't even pronounce.

The initial cost is steep, but replacement chemicals are cheaper
than the dry-tab replacements and they last a LOT longer.
The pH tests should last for hundreds of uses, I've done
about 30 phosphate tests and the jar is more than half full.

BTW, there are other chemical test places, like HACH, that probably
also have great tests.  
-- 
Jim Hurley --> jimh-at-ultra.com  ...!ames!ultra!jimh  (408) 922-0100
Ultra Network Technologies / 101 Daggett Drive / San Jose CA 95134


(General) Unique Water Quality

by pjs/gvgdsd.GVG.TEK.COM (Peter J. Stonard)
Date: 17 Jul 92
Newsgroup: alt.aquaria,rec.aquaria

Part of the aquarium hobby is concern over water quality, for many
of us it is the hobby! Hope you find the following amusing:


(No Title)

by

	Temperature of water at spring		140degrees
	Temperature of pool at spring		100degrees
	Specific Gravity of pool at spring	1.01

	Grains per Imperial Gallon at 60degrees:
	Chloride of Potassium	1.722
	Chloride of Sodium	31.297
	Sulphate of Magnesium	.148
	Sulphate of Sodium	33.061
	Sulphate of Lime	14.840
	Bicarbonate of Lime	6.259
	Bicarbonate of Iron	4.634
	Sulphurate of Hydrogen	.174

	Pool Filters operate at the rate of 24 cubic feet
	per minute or 9,000 Gallons per Hour. The Pool
	Contains about 48,000 Gallons.

If you like mineral springs, or olympic size swimming pools at
90degrees, may I recommend a visit? I didn't bring back any
of the water for my fish, though...

++=++=++=++=++=++=++=++=++=++=++=++=++=++=++=++=++=++=++=++=++=++
Peter J. Stonard        +                                /^\  /^\
Grass Valley Group      +                       /^\     /   \/
Grass Valley, CA. 95945 +                     /     \ /    /  
pjs-at-gvgspd.gvg.tek.com  +     Fish keeper in the Sierra Foothills
++=++=++=++=++=++=++=++=++=++=++=++=++=++=++=++=++=++=++=++=++=++
If it looks like; sounds like; quacks like; an Opinion. It's mine.


Calcium test kits

by Greg Morin <greg/seachem.com>
Date: Wed, 20 Jan 1999

> Calcium test kits are wildly use by reef aquarists and many companies sell
> them.  Salifert, LaMotte, Aquarium Systems all markets them.  Actually the
> LaMotte calcium kit ($21.99 for 50 tests) is quite cheap compared to other
> LaMotte products.   I have never use the LaMotte calcium kit, so no comment
> on the quality.

Don't forget Seachem ;-)

Our Reef Status: Calcium kit is (like the magnesium kit) marketed 
toward the saltwater hobbyist, but can be used in freshwater just as 
well. In fact it could be used in the same manner as the other kits 
you described, i.e. you can skip the magnesium precipitation step to 
get a total hardness, then run the test with the precip step to get 
calcium, the difference being magnesium (assuming strontium levels 
are nil). FWIW our kit gives you the same easy to see pink-blue 
titration endpoint... it comes with a reference so you can always be 
sure the kit is working properly... and also it yields 150 tests (for 
around $40-$50 retail depending on your source).FYI.

- -Greg Morin

Gregory Morin, Ph.D.  ~~~~~~~Research Director~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Seachem Laboratories, Inc.      www.seachem.com     888-SEACHEM
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


Calcium test kits

by Greg Morin <greg/seachem.com>
Date: Fri, 22 Jan 1999

> Our Reef Status: Calcium kit is (like the magnesium kit) marketed 
> toward the saltwater hobbyist, but can be used in freshwater just 
> as well. In fact it could be used in the same manner as the other 
> kits you described, i.e. you can skip the magnesium precipitation 
> step to get a total hardness,


I must apologize for relaying the above information with respect to 
the total hardness testing ability of the Reef Status Calcium kit... 
I had assumed this was possible without any test kit modifications, 
however upon actually trying to read total hardness with the calcium 
kit I found that no reading is possible with the current formulation 
of the kit. Further investigation revealed that this dye is actually 
quite insensitive to magnesium.

Anyway, I apologize for posting misleading information... guess this 
will teach me not to go and shoot my mouth off before I have _fully_ 
investigated any ideas ;-)

But as a follow up (something I have fully investigated now ;-) our 
magnesium kit will read total hardness if the calcium precipitation 
step is skipped, with the difference giving you a calcium reading. 
However, as that kit exists right now (targeted at the saltwater 
hobbyist) it would mainly be useful only for measuring total hardness 
as the resolution is rather low (for freshwater, not for saltwater) 
at around 50 mg/L per drop of titrant.

- -Greg Morin

Gregory Morin, Ph.D.  ~~~~~~~Research Director~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Seachem Laboratories, Inc.      www.seachem.com     888-SEACHEM
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


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This page was last updated 21 February 1999