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Re: Plants with Amquel and Ammo-Lock 2

> Date: Sat, 10 Jun 2000 18:36:21 EDT
> From: Patragusti at aol_com
> Subject: Plants with Amquel and Ammo-Lock 2
> Are Amquel and Ammo-Lock 2 the same chemical? 

Not quite, Joe, but AFAIK they are close, as is Prime. Both quickly kill
inverts like hydra and daphnia because they are based on relatives to

John F. Kuhns did a lot of early work on treating chloramines, and found an
unusually stable and effective form that he subsequently patented and
licensed to Novalac (Kordon). I think he's on this list, so maybe he will
set me straight. The others are as close as they can get to Amquel without
violating the patent, but all seem to work in a very similar fashion. [That
statement should generate some heated rebuttal! :-)]

> If they are not, which would be
> a better one to use with a planted tank? The label on Ammo-Lock 2 says that
> the ammonia still exists, just in a different form (the unionized, right?),

It is in a bound form, just like "Amquel," AFAIK. I guess that's technically
unionized. It's not free ammonia, anyway.

> while amquel says that it bond with the ammonia. With Amquel, is the ammonia
> still available to the plants? I worry about this because any of the chemical
> not used initially (with the water change) will react with ammonia later
> produced by the fish. 

I worried too, at one time, but careful observation by a number of members
of our local plant group (SFBAAPS) proved my worries unfounded. The "bound"
ammonia has been proven to be available to the biofiltering organisms, and
this strong anecdotal evidence indicates that plants have no trouble
utilizing it, too. The binding apparently isn't that strong -- just enough
to keep free ammonia from forming.

*** As an aside, I think the San Francisco Bay Area Aquatic Plants Society
members must constitute about a third of the world's market for aquatic
testing kits. :^) These amateur chemists are fanatics like you wouldn't
believe! ***

> I want this ammonia to be utilized by the plants.
> Amquel says it contains sodium methanosomethingoxysulfate (not sure what its
> called), while Ammo Lock 2 has Alphatic Amine salts (is that even the active
> ingredient?).

As an organic chemist, I'm a pretty fair electrical engineer. ;-) The minute
someone starts throwing disodium-tri-chicken-wire stuff at me I head for the
hills. John, please help us out here.

I'm pretty convinced that none of the regular dechloraminators keeps the
plants from getting the ammonium as they need it.


Wright Huntley, Fremont CA, USA, 510 494-8679  huntleyone at home dot com

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