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Re: [APD] Re: DIY (and ferts. supplier)


As someone entering (for the past two years) into the aquarium market, I
have to thank you exceedingly for the offhanded last comment you made about
DIY lights.  I almost did it myself, my lighting, but living in an apt. I
didn't have the space or tools to make my own canopy.  I bought two
SmartLamps which @$140 ea. was an excellent price.  I hear all the time
about  MH lights and their benefits, although the bulbs themselves are
expensive, the upfront costs can be completely inhibiting.  It never occured
to me that such lights might exist outside the aquarium realm, go figure!  I
was hoping to have another tank someday, and this is just what I'm going to
do...take a nice trot on down to the local hardware store and have one of
those guys help me out putting together my very own MH lights ;-)  THANKS!

On other thoughts, I need a good supplier for fertilizer components, has
anyone tried: http://www.hydroponics.com/info/aquatics/pmdd.htm

Fertilizer is the last piece of my puzzle, here having excellent PC lighting
and compressed CO2 into the tank my plants are growing nicely, but not as
quickly or as strong as I would like.  And most recently I had a wonderful
foothold of Green Water, which is still plaguing me, I think light
starvation along with a soon-to-come x-mas present (diatom filter) should

Thanks again,


----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Bill Wichers" <billw at waveform_net>
To: <aquatic-plants at actwin_com>
Sent: Friday, December 05, 2003 8:27 PM
Subject: [APD] Re: DIY

> >I want walmart prices. If sterilite manufactured a
> >bunch of this stuff it could be dirt cheap. its just
> >plastic boxes and stuff they could pump out by the
> >trillions. pumps and powerheads are cheap enough. but
> >when you see $250-300 for a device that does nothing
> >but control the on and off of powerheads to cycle
> >through them thats ridiculous. The same goes for
> >acrylic things like sumps and skimmers and calcium
> >reactors which could be made for pennies.
> It's simple: the market is not big enough for these devices to allow them
> to be manufactured in sufficient quantities to result in low prices. For
> example, a mold for a skimmer might cost $50,000. Yes, complex molds for
> plastics are *expensive* since they require a lot of very complex
> machining. If you sell 1000 skimmers, that's $50 per skimmer just to cover
> the cost of the mold. I don't know how big a market there is for skimmers,
> but I would be surprised if it's more than a total of maybe 10,000 units
> per year, and that would have to be split among the many different types
> skimmers out there. There isn't a market for trillions skimmers or
> trillions of power head controllers so each unit has to carry a higher
> percentage of the total cost to design and manufacture each unit and these
> are not insignificant costs.
> DIY can often be cheaper because you are doing your own research and
> development, and you don't have a manufacturing facility to support. You
> don't have to contract for labor and pay wages and benefits, nor do you
> have to deal with utility costs for your factory and warehouse(s) and the
> taxes associated with the facilities.
> There is a lot of price gouging on aquarium stuff which is probably the
> biggest reason to DIY -- especially on lighting which seems to be the most
> overpriced. Ballasts, for example, *are* manufactured in huge quantities
> since they don't go only into the aquarium hobby. Why it should be $400+
> for a MH ballast when I can get one at the local electrical supply house
> for $29 (and maybe $20 more for an enclosure) is a bit of a mystery.
>          -Bill
> *****************************
> Waveform Technology
> UNIX Systems Administrator
> _______________________________________________
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> Aquatic-Plants at actwin_com
> http://www.actwin.com/mailman/listinfo.cgi/aquatic-plants

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