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Re: Does bentonite make a good substrate additive for cation exchange?

Wright Huntley <huntley1 at home_com> sez:
>  Probably depends on what kind you mean. The "sodium" type that swells
>  and gels like mad is probably truly great for CEC. The "calcium" kind
>  (aka Fuller's Earth) is maybe not much good, as the sites may be bound
>  too tightly with the divalent metals to provide the high CEC. IDK.
>  Interestingly, most of the Bentonite I have worked with (drillers mud)
>  is also fairly rich in iron. It would be interesting to see if the
>  bizarre physical behaviour is or is not a problem in aquaria. If you
>  have some and try it, I hope the results appear here.
I was talkin' about sodium bentonite.  I have a little "food grade" bentonite
that is used as a clarifier for homebrew beer/wine.  It is kind of expensive,
but could be used as a test (a little goes a long way).  Clumping cat litter
also contains sodium bentonite, along with who-knows-what.  Drilling mud is
probably just about right.

I figured you could hydrate the stuff and pump it into an existing substrate
with a huge veteranary (sp?) syringe.