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Aqua essentials and Greg Watson will be selling the KH reference solution soon

Discussion in 'General Plant Topics' started by Tom Barr, Feb 8, 2007.

  1. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    I just sent out the info for both Greg Watson and Aquaessentials to see about them selling the KH solution for folks.

    You add 3.484 liters of DI water to this 10mls smpale to get 4 KH(total will be 3.499liters).

    If you miss the milliliter volume by say 2 mls, you will get an error of about 0.02ppm of alklalinity.

    I'd suggest buying a 500ml volumetric flask(run about 5-10$ on ebay etc), making up a batch, use 7 full jiggers of the 500ml flask, take out 16mls with a small cheap pippette as best you can. Place the stuff you plan on using in the 500ml flask and keep and use from there.

    The rest of the 3 liters, store in a sealed jug, milk jug etc and clean it out really good. Fill up when you need more or sell off.

    Note, this will last about 26 years per drop checker, based on 2-3 week use and 5mls used each time.

    You no longer need to do pH test kits(other than filling once a week) or KH measurements. You get a lot more information out of the pH test this way as well, you see the pH change/CO2 all day and night long, not just one mere snap shot in time!

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  2. dapellegrini

    dapellegrini Lifetime Charter Member
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    Awesome... days? weeks?
     
  3. VaughnH

    VaughnH Lifetime Charter Member
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    So, if I mix the 10 ml with 339.4 ml of distilled or DI water I get 40 dKH water? If so, I can store that easily in a 500 ml bottle, then mix 50 ml of that with 450 ml of distilled or DI water to get 500 ml (another bottle) of 4 dKH water, and not have to store so much water. Did I calculate the 339.4 correctly?

    This also lets me easily make 5.3 dKH water by mixing 66.3 ml of the 40 dKH water with 433.7 ml of distilled or DI water to get a drop checker to turn green at 40 ppm of CO2.

    This is a big service to us hobby folks! And, it even standardizes our measurements of CO2 concentrations so our discussions of CO2 will make a lot more sense.
     
  4. dapellegrini

    dapellegrini Lifetime Charter Member
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    Hmmmm... Well if Tom is saying that 10ml in 3.484 liters makes 4dkh, then wouldn't 10ml in 348.4ml make 40dkh? Where did you get the 339.4 number?

    I like the way you are thinking. I would rather have a smaller quantity of 40dkh too that I could dilute as needed... Easier to store.
     
  5. VaughnH

    VaughnH Lifetime Charter Member
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    It is 10 ml with 3484 ml, or 10 in 3494 total ml. So, to get 10X the strength, you need 100 ml in 3494 ml, or 100 to 3394 ml of water. But, we only have 10 ml, so divide both by 10 to get 10 ml in 339.4 ml of water.
     
  6. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    End of the month for the USA. Depends on Richard for the UK.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  7. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Sure Vaughn, that will work, but you need to get 10X more accurate for 339.4 mls.
    For 4 KH from 40 KH, you'd do well stick to unit of 10. So 10mls of 40 KH in 90mls DI will = 100mls of 4 KH.

    For those that like math:

    Dilution Equation: M1V1 = M2V2

    where M1 = Molarity of initial solution, V1 = volume of initial solution to be used, M2 = Molarity of final (diluted) solution, and V2 = desired volume of final dilute solution.

    Here's a how to make dilutions link so you can check whatever stock solution you want to dilute to and it's fairly simple for the average hobbyist:

    Serial Dilutions Made Easy

    Resource Materials: Making Simple Solutions and Dilutions

    The most common problem folks do: add 10mls ref solution to 100mls of DI of the stock solution rather than 10mls of ref solution to 90mls of DI water.

    Dilutions: Principles and Applications

    Diluting and Concentrating

    Now you may all note, it would be painfully easy to make a simple dosing calculator to run any desired volume and the output would yield the final concentration. ;)

    Perhaps some wise soul will add this into the dosing calculator here?
    Using this science lab tested verified sample is ideal for consistency and it;s easy to ship and relatively cheap(about 12$ which makes 3.499 liters worth of 4 KH solution).

    Note: this is really no different than the dilution factors with EI dosing, we just use the tank itself and the remainder of the water after a water change and dilute that to get the max build up possible and add the ferts after.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  8. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    The other tip: when adding this solution to the DI water etc, make sure you rinse the container that the KH solution comes in with the DI water you are using for the 4KH solution or stock solution.

    That way every last bit of the KH reference solution gets into your dilution with DI water.

    Regards,

    Tom Barr
     
  9. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Vaughn, since folks will be buying this and using your basic idea and you being the main proponent and all......

    Perhaps a nice short and simple article about it and the trials and tribulations you have learned upon this path would be appropriate?

    I would love to see someone do a dosing calculator for the dilutions.
    I can provide any sampling methods, where to get the Volumetric flask and their advantages to measuring liquids toi a high precision and how the methods learned in this, may be applied to making any set of reference solutions for verification of any test kit to a high degree of accuracy. I'll also write a bit about the advantages of going big with volumes and the degrees of accuracy you can gain..
    We should all pull together on this one and make this happen.

    It'll standardize a burning issue that's been going on for many years, too many.

    Giving advice use to be 60-80% game.
    I noticed that 90-95% of the issues started appearing to be CO2 related, then I asked why. Folks had 200ppm and had no issues with fish and they have no wood or peat etc added.


    This is the last real nail in the coffin, there will always be a small %, maybe 1-3% that will always follow Murphy's law till the bitter end(you know who you are:eek: )

    But making it understandable and the concepts true benefits is key.
    I would like to see a nice standard ref solution make it in this hobby like KNO3, etc.

    I know this will help the hobby, make it cheaper, more successful, make us equal all over the world and using the same methods, same chemicals etc for cheaper than any company brand.

    There is also a chance that both Richard and Greg will sell the dilutions already done. 500mls of a KH 4 for say 8.99$ and a bottle.

    It's really up to them how they want to sell it.
    They can dilute or sell the concentrate.

    They would have the buy a bottle to go with it, and I know just the bottle, they are like the TMG, the squeeze disperser 500ml/16oz jugs. These are very nice for dosing Traces or other things after you are done with them BTW.

    500ml would last you 3.8 years and would require no volume measuring of the dilution etc. Weight is a shipping issue also.

    Thoughts?
    I want to get this squared away before they start selling it.
    Also, the pH color injdicator is certainly not a perfect reagent set that you buy for 6$ etc either, that is the Achillies Heel in the the drop checker system then.
    Everything now hinges on that piece of the puzzle. We can assume it's correct, but the range of accuracy is so poor vs a pH meter, I do not think it's an issue personally.

    But getting a decent narrow range pH indicator might be something else to check and focus on that's consistent with everyone.

    That may be bought in bulk also, you do not need to buy aquarium test kits for that in other words;)

    I suppose they may want to sell that along with the Reference solution.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  10. dapellegrini

    dapellegrini Lifetime Charter Member
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    Well, I think it would be more useful if they sold pre-diluted mixes, say 4dkh and 5dkh, along with say a 40dkh for simple dilution. All this awkward diluting will leave a barrier to entry for many folks in the hobby.

    I don't mind, actually find it kinda fun, but there is most certainly an opportunity here to offer premixes. I would think they would sell much better in the long run, and should actually be higher margin for folks like Greg. I for one do not need 20-some-odd years worth of anything. Even 3-years may be overkill for most people...

    However it is sold, I will be among the first orders.
     
  11. JoeBanks

    JoeBanks Prolific Poster

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    i agree with the previous post. Who needs 26 years worth of anything?

    I support the idea of selling pre-diluted smaller quantities. If the idea of selling a reference solution is to make it easier and more accurate for us, why stop half way. Make it fully ready to use and more people will use it.

    If shipping weight is an issue, they can sell smaller 100ml bottles as well that would last more than a year. Nothing wrong with reordering once a year - and it's better business for the seller.
     
  12. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    Good points on the pre mixed versions.

    I think 500mls/16oz is fine then for 4 KH.
    5 KH is fine also.
    And a 40KH also.

    That and a supply of the pH indicator to go along with that.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  13. dapellegrini

    dapellegrini Lifetime Charter Member
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    That would be ideal... The point on pH regent is a good one... Will be interesting to see what the selection is on that.
     
  14. Tom Barr

    Tom Barr Founder
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    They can sell the bromo blue, the best narrow range pH indicator for our target range for a few $ for 1oz amouts or buy a 500ml for say 15$ or so.
    500mls = to about 10,000 drops, or about many many years if you use 3 drops each time every 2 weeks.

    If you have a few tanks, that might good.
    If you have one, the 1oz amount ought to do it.

    29mls = 1 oz, so that's about 20 drops per ml and 580 drops.
    3 drops every 2 weeks/year = 22 years.

    Regards,
    Tom Barr
     
  15. VaughnH

    VaughnH Lifetime Charter Member
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    I have been writing about this for several months now, so I suppose I could do a summary piece. The points that I think need to be made are that a "drop checker" must necessarily have CO2 ppm equal to that in the tank, the KH/pH/CO2 equation does not work in real world tank water, and this is, at last, a way to know you have X ppm of CO2 in the water, with no doubts. It also opens up the possibility for finding the optimum ppm of CO2 in the water. I don't think there is a theoretical optimum value, and all previous measurements are in doubt, as far as I am concerned. I think the optimum will end up being closer to 40 ppm than 20 ppm. I won't promise when I will do this writing, and if anyone else wants to, I will be relieved to hear that.

    A thought I have been suppressing is: how do we know the equation relating ppm CO2 to KH and pH is accurate? I do know that there could be an infinite number of such equations, with different values for the multiplier for KH and the pH number to subtract the pH reading from. But, even if the form of the equation is correct, is the "3" as the constant multiplied by the KH actually a theorectical number? My point is, are we headed for still another downfall, finding that our scheme really doesn't work?

    The bottle for this stuff - 4 or 5 dKH water - should, in my opinion, be one with a little plastic syringe in the cap, or be a squeeze bottle with a thin tube to direct the stuff into a little glass drop checker. I bought a 500 ml polyethylene bottle from Tap Plastic for about $1, but it had only a normal cap. And, 250 ml is about the smallest size the bottle should be, to encourage rinsing out a drop checker with it before filling it. 4 dKH is good for 30 ppm, 5.3 for 40 ppm, and 6.6 for 50 ppm. The bottle should, however, be labeled as "30 ppm CO2", instead of 4 dKH, and it should be in a package with the indicator solution. Included with it should be a three color chart, yellow, green and blue, with the corresponding ppm of CO2 marked on it.
     
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