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Re: heating cables

Well this won't be the first nor the last time I says something on this
I've had them, made by 3 different companies. I've built them(4 of them) and
have run a number of differing flows through substrates using RFUG's.

Now if circulation and reduction of waste etc is the goal, using a RFUG with
CPVC/PVC would seem more appropriate and it would also equilibrate the temp

I could argue the same thing using the RFUG's the exact same way.
They only cost 10$.

I've used cables(8 years) and RFUG(10 years).
Personally I like the results of no flow, plain old osmosis.
It's simple.
It grows the plants best IME.
Claus talked about this in the past and osmosis on the test he observed
proved to be the best flow rate through the substrate. Cables provided too
much flow.

I think in a practical tank, folks are going to hard pressed to show it make
a difference or not. Heck, in lab set up etc, they have trouble showing

I guess the religious element is the most important factor as James said. I
cannot see it, I suppose I just don't have enough faith:-) Perhaps I need to
go to a "revival".

You can add a wet/dry etc if you need more bio power or feed the plants
better nutrient routines to increase NH4 or NO3 uptake rates or any nutrient
or standard for uptake or primary production you wish to measure.

Now this Nature idea of a warm substrate:
Nothing is static as a rule, sometimes the substrate will be warmer,
sometimes cooler. Depends on the time of year, source water temps, air
temps, water clarity, depth and size and flow of the lotic(streams river
etc) or lenthic (Lakes ponds) system etc. Flows in/out of the substrate vary
due to many different processes.
I've been to many lakes and rivers where there's a temperature difference
both ways. 

Plants in nature grow there because of many reasons, but it's not that it
because this is the optimum conditions for them. They grow there because
that's where they _can_ grow and survive. Many are simply forced into the

Some plants cannot handle the competition with other plants.
Some need more N than others.
Some do better at high light,temps, precipitation etc.
Some plants cannot live underwater/ near Saltwater.
Some plants taste bad while others taste good, herbivory controls
Many weeds need disturbed sites. If trees shaded them, they will peter out

If you can keep the temp on the cable on all the time then you get the
But if the tank is too hot for 1/2 the day or all summer, then it's not much
I've had great growth with 10F differences in the substrate/water column
I don't have cold feet:-).

But the main plus/pro argument for cables for cable folks is they _don't
hurt_ a tank. That I can say. They may help, I never saw it. I gave it more
than enough chance. I like the RFUG better personally.
Extra junk, something else to plug in and suck the electric. I got rid of
them both a few years back. It was kind hard selling something you argue
against :-) But folks wanted it. My tanks look better than ever now. So
that's my tank, errr, take.

Tom Barr