[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]
Anybody who has the materials might want to follow along.
You will need a Pyrex cup or bowl or jar which will hold about 2 cups
of liquid and has a lid. It doesn't have to fit tight but one which
closes reasonably well. Actually a pint Mason jar would be the best
substitute in this experiment. A lid is important.
Now we need some peat moss. A good source might be a peat
pellet. It is well contained and easy to handle. Another would be a
hand full of what ever peat you use as a spawning media. Get one of
these and set it aside. Now we need some sodium hydroxide, Lye to
most people and it it available at most food stores in the washing
and house hold cleaning area of the store. Phosphloric acid is also
there as a drain cleaner - but what we need is Drain-O, the solid
Now the procedure:
Bring to boil 2 cups of water in the container. Microwave is ok but
put a fork in the container to prevent super heating. As soon as the
liquid is boiling stop the heating and when the liquid stops boiling,
Drop a peat pellet into the hot water, give it a little stir and let
it all sit over night. Just make sure it all sinks, and cools off.
Dissolve a tablespoon of lye in a half cup of water. CAREFUL! it will
cause eye and skin burns if it gets on you . The procedure should be
done with safety glasses on and around the kitchen sink to wash any
A day after you put the peat into the hot water - so everything is
cool and the peat has all sunk it is time for the test. Your sense of
smell is your test instrument. If you want you may use your ammonia
test kit though it isn't really necessary.
Now think like a chemist and pour the half cup of lye solution into
the peat solution and put the lid on the container. Swrill, stir or
other wise mix the solutions together. Wait 5 minutes, then
cautiously open the container and take a smell of the solution. . . .
that is ammonia and primary amines. Give it several hours and then
smell of the mixture again after the pH of all the slurry has had a
chance to rise to 12 - 14.
And if one distills it out, and titrates the distillate for ammonia,
it amounts to an 1/8 to a 1/4 of a gram - 125 to 250 milligrams.
Now if you put one peat pellet into a liter( Quart) of water that is
125 to 250 ppm ammonia - if it is a gallon of water it is 31 to 62.5
and you store and hatch your Nothos eggs and S A annual 's in this
stuff and a lethal level is less than 0.1 ppm - I don't think so. Too
many experiments have proved otherwise - millions of killies, betas,
guppies, and on and on raised in water with NH4+ well above 50 ppm.
No denial that the use of a charcoal filter could simplify the lives
of many of us killie keepers, especially if we have to rely on tap
water as our changing water. Here in the midwest the tap water comes
from the tap at pH 9 to 10 and a charcoal filter doesn't change that.
It takes quite a while to dissolve enough CO2 to get the pH down to
around 7.5 to 8.
This is not to say which method of removing chlorine from tap water is better.
Just to say the hype about ammonia in our pH situation is trivial.
Water with a pH above 8.9 is different, no argument! Why would an
analytical chemist argue with an engineer about water chemistry?
Now I really have to change some water.
See http://www.aka.org/AKA/subkillietalk.html to unsubscribe