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Kevin's Setup

Kevin wrote:

>>- -I have followed the bleach debate, and frankly I like George's
suggestion of yest. to bleach plants, add new gravel etc.>>

Did George really say "bleach plants, add new gravel" yesterday?  I
thought he said bleaching is a desperation move that treats the symptoms
and not the underlying problem?

>>- -I wonder about adding duplarit to substrate (mail order) or will this
be too much as the Terralit is still there (or seive out Terralit

Can't give you much help here.  The most conservative answer is probably
to use one product or the other, but not both.  If you can find out what
Terralit is, you may be able to make a reasoned decision.  Otherwise, go
with one or the other.  (If you're going to bleach your plants and add
new gravel, lots of us have had good results with Duplarit.)

>>- -Tropica mastergrow for certain!>>

Definitely a good product.  Many, if not most of us, use less than the
recommended dosage.

>>- -I have a medical oxygen regulator, with small tubing outlet, I am
toying with a canister co2 system - will this work?>>

I don't think one is supposed to mix gas system components (and the
threads may not match).  But I can't really tell you why that is, or how
bad things could get if you do it anyway.

>>- -more light, less time?>>

This is your main problem IMHO.  Not enough light and maybe not the
right spectral qualities.  Put your money on this problem first.  Double
the 80 W that you already have.  12 hours is okay in my experience.  You
might play in the 10-12 hour range once you have enough light.

>>- -I have not measured for high phosphates in my tap water but I am
wondering if this is partly responsible- would an r/o unit be a wiser
investment than canister co2 setup?>>

Definitely DO NOT buy an RO unit until you know more about your water.
Test for phosphates if you think they might be in the water.  Unless
your water is quite troublesome, you can probably work with it.  The RO
unit comes after adequate lighting and probably some sort of
satisfactory CO2 setup--unless you've got hard evidence that your water
is real bad.  I spent a lot of money finding out I didn't need an RO/DI
unit/storage tank/pumping system.

Good luck.  Steve D