DIY Root tab clay question. - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 02-25-2010, 08:04 PM Thread Starter
Nue
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DIY Root tab clay question.

So i bought the Mexican Red Clay from a local crafts supply. And its already hard, does anyone know if it needs to be hydrated, or did i buy a bad batch? Thanks
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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 02-25-2010, 08:10 PM
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You can hydrate it, just use a tiny bowl of water and add slowly. It is supposed to be hard. So you know, they will start to fall apart as soon as you put it in the water.
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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 02-25-2010, 08:12 PM
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This is a neat kit for making your own tabs.

http://www.plantguild.com/substrateretrofitter.html
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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 02-25-2010, 08:20 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks Guys!
Quote:
Originally Posted by Green Leaf Aquariums View Post
This is a neat kit for making your own tabs.

http://www.plantguild.com/substrateretrofitter.html
nice, thanks for the link, i like that idea.
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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 02-26-2010, 03:57 AM
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Here are some great links for recipes:

http://www.aquariacentral.com/forums...=diy+root+tabs

http://www.aquaticplantcentral.com/f...b-recipes.html

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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 02-26-2010, 05:51 AM
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The real challenge to run of the mill diy tabs is that they fall apart in the water. Quickly. Unless you have a way of heating them well beyond 1000 degrees, they just don't dry out well. Most recipes call for too much fertilizer and they fall apart wayyyy too fast.
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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 02-26-2010, 06:00 AM
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If you know of anybody who does pottery or glass art they'd have a kiln you can bake your clay tabs

Not too hot or it'll be completely non-soluble. What happens is the minerals, cilica etc.. melt and bind with each other like glass. It would be neat to make your own substrate though, if your can figure out a way to make tiny nuggets like the ADA aquasoil.


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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 02-26-2010, 06:10 AM
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This clay will be very hard to fire to waterproof levels.
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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 02-27-2010, 05:38 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by over_stocked View Post
The real challenge to run of the mill diy tabs is that they fall apart in the water. Quickly. Unless you have a way of heating them well beyond 1000 degrees, they just don't dry out well. Most recipes call for too much fertilizer and they fall apart wayyyy too fast.
Totally did not have an issue falling apart with the links I provided. No heat, I just air dried them for three days. They don't fall apart nearly as fast as seachem or any of the other products I've used. Plus it only cost like $4.00 to make over 200 of them. Can't beat the price and they work fantastic.

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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 02-27-2010, 06:05 AM
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what if i make separate tablets for macros and micros and put them in fish feeders like this one http://petchauffeur.net/Merchant2/gr...riumFeeder.jpg

how fast does it dissolve? will chunks of undissolved tablet harm any plants? like a carpet of HC or something?

will it work?

Benedict
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post #11 of 12 (permalink) Old 02-27-2010, 03:34 PM
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I wouldn't let them sit on top of the substrate. In contact with the water column where the water is moving more, I think they would dissolve way too fast, and the clay would cloud the water.

Pressed deep into the substrate where there is very little water movement they will not dissolve so fast, and the fertilizer will not get into the water column so much.

Part of the idea of using tablets is infrequent fertilizing. Press the tablets down into the substrate maybe once a month or so, not drop them on top like lawn fertilizer.
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post #12 of 12 (permalink) Old 02-27-2010, 04:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Green Leaf Aquariums View Post
This is a neat kit for making your own tabs.

http://www.plantguild.com/substrateretrofitter.html

This guy has lots of good info on how to make your own, as well of a nice list of ingredients for cheap. He is a nice guy to talk to if you have any questions
.
http://www.plantguild.com/chemicals.html




I have seen folks make these tabs before with all of the appropriate ingredients and they worked well long term in the water without dissolving to fats.

The end result was they worked well for very cheap. You can make hundreds of them for pennies!
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