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test kits


>Date: Mon, 2 Feb 1998 13:44:08 -0800 (PST)
>From: Roxanne Bittman <rbittman at spock_dfg.ca.gov>
>To: aquatic-plants at actwin_com
>Subject: test kits
>I agree that LaMotte makes excellent test kits which compare in accuracy
to what 
>you get from a Hach spectrophotometer (did the comparison, very good 
>However, I am also always on the lookout for ways to save money, and at
$30+ per 
>kit, LaMotte can be prohibitive.  Here's a suggestion for a cheap
>Nitrate test kit:  Wardley (of all things) makes a nitrate test kit for
about $9 
>which is very easy to use, takes 5 minutes, and gives results in ranges
that are 
>relevant to fw plantists.  It's results compare pretty well to the Hach 
>spectrophotometer, keeping in mind that the Hach gives you a real number,
>the Wardley only gives a general idea.  The increments are 10mg/l, 20mg/l,
>I find this perfect for my needs, since my tanks start to grow BG algae at
>than about 10mg/l NO3.  
>For iron, there is nothing like LaMotte; you need the accuracy and the
>amount is so small (.1mg/l) that most test kits can't deal with it.  Iron
is by 
>far my most expensive test kit.  I think one could do without it _once you
>your tank_, but it sure is nice to know what effect the addition of a
>amount of liquid fertilizer has, especially in the begining!
>Hope this helps.
>Roxanne Bittman