Dosing spoons or gram scale? - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 25 (permalink) Old 10-17-2012, 12:03 AM Thread Starter
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Dosing spoons or gram scale?

I was thinking about ordering some dry ferts since I'm about to run out of Seachem potassium. From what I've read, dry ferts can last for a long time is used correctly. I'd be dosing these ferts for my nanos. Since the amounts I'd be using would be small (the tanks are low+medium tech) would I be better off using mini measuring spoons or a gram scale?

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post #2 of 25 (permalink) Old 10-17-2012, 12:07 AM
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I got a gram scale because I was dosing nano tanks.
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post #3 of 25 (permalink) Old 10-17-2012, 12:34 AM
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If you get a scale, make sure it will measure milligrams accurately (0.001 g). Personally, I find that scales (especially the accurate ones that need to be sheltered from air gusts) are very annoying to use on a repeated basis. I would suggest either making stock solutions (use the scale for accuracy) that you dose out with a syringe, or using the scale to find a scoop that will measure out each amount you want to dose. The second method may be difficult with nano tanks.

What I did, since I did not feel like carrying bags of powder to work, was use wet's calculator to first give me a mg amount for each fertilizer. Then I guessed at what fraction of a teaspoon would approximate that amount, adjusting up or down as necessary. I got a set of very tiny measuring spoons from Pure Bulk, and now I can scoop out what I need each day quickly and painlessly.
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post #4 of 25 (permalink) Old 10-17-2012, 01:18 AM Thread Starter
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So .01 wouldn't be accurate enough?

I don't really mind measuring the powders. I'd probably just use a piece of paper and a razor blade to divide and measure my portions.

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post #5 of 25 (permalink) Old 10-17-2012, 01:24 AM
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You can get away with a pinch and a dash.

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post #6 of 25 (permalink) Old 10-17-2012, 01:28 AM
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I make solutions with water, seems easier, especially using the petalphile calculator.

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post #7 of 25 (permalink) Old 10-17-2012, 01:43 AM
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Quote:
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So .01 wouldn't be accurate enough?

I don't really mind measuring the powders. I'd probably just use a piece of paper and a razor blade to divide and measure my portions.
Mine is only accurate to .01
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post #8 of 25 (permalink) Old 10-17-2012, 03:32 AM
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I guess it'll depend on the size of your nanos. If you only need 5 mg of something, that will be impossible to weigh out when it can only measure in increments of 10 mg. When it says 10 mg, it can be anywhere from 5 to 15 mg. If you never need to go below 50 mg, then it won't matter as much.

Play with the calculator for a while; that'll tell you more.
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post #9 of 25 (permalink) Old 10-17-2012, 03:46 AM
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Wow I would think it would be tough to dose nanos dry. I'd just buy the dry and make up solutions.

The major advantage to dosing dry, to me at least, is not having to mix up solutions all the time, but the daily volume you would be dosing to nanos would b so small I would think if you mixed up a liter of your NPK solution and a liter of your trace and iron it would last quite a while.
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post #10 of 25 (permalink) Old 10-17-2012, 03:59 AM
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Ditto Sotty: I have dose my larger tanks (10 gallon to 125 gallon) dry, but would not like to try dosing smaller tanks.

I find it much easier to make a couple of liters and dose each tank with a syringe (no needle). That way I am sure to not overdose the small tanks.
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post #11 of 25 (permalink) Old 10-17-2012, 04:47 AM Thread Starter
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I was thinking about doing pre-mixing but I was wondering, what containers do you guys use for storing the fert solutions?

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post #12 of 25 (permalink) Old 10-17-2012, 04:54 AM
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You could use old Seachem bottles.

I don't find it that difficult because after a while of using the scale you kind of know what your target scoop is in relation to what it will weigh, and then drop it on the scale just to make sure it is what its supposed to be, then dump into filter outflow.
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post #13 of 25 (permalink) Old 10-17-2012, 05:09 AM
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You never mentioned it, but I don't suppose you're doing EI dosing (specifically the part where you do a 50% water change weekly)? I assumed not, because you said "low/med tech", but in case you are, you can definitely get by with a pinch and a dash, as mistergreen said.

If you regularly measure your water parameters and dose accordingly, then you might want to go with the solution and syringe route.
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post #14 of 25 (permalink) Old 10-17-2012, 05:30 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kevmo911 View Post
You never mentioned it, but I don't suppose you're doing EI dosing (specifically the part where you do a 50% water change weekly)? I assumed not, because you said "low/med tech", but in case you are, you can definitely get by with a pinch and a dash, as mistergreen said.

If you regularly measure your water parameters and dose accordingly, then you might want to go with the solution and syringe route.
Yeah, I should have made it clearer. I was thinking about dosing potassium to keep my plants from developing pinholes. This is all in my low-tech shrimp tank. Nitrates are fine, 10ppm~ and I don't dose phosphates since I'm not noticing any deficiencies or algae related problems. What I am seeing is pinholes on my floaters and on my crypts. From what I understand, EI is flexible on low tech tanks, depending on what is needed to be dosed. However I could be wrong in what fert dosing method to use to address the potassium deficiency. What's the best exact ratio of N:P:K for a low light tank?

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post #15 of 25 (permalink) Old 10-17-2012, 05:31 AM
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I use tupperware from the dollar store to store my solutions.

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