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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-07-2008, 03:44 AM Thread Starter
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4dkh

Got the drop checker in the mail yesterday.

went to the store today and bought 1 gal distilled water and a box of baking soda. (and they probably thought i was gonna go home and cook up some rocks... )

anyway, ive been searching around for a while on how to make the 4dkh solution...
all i find are recipes suggesting the use of graduated cylinders and a scale that weighs to the .01 grams, neither of which i have at the moment.

is it that crucial for this to be so scientific?

What's wrong with using a KH test kit and just dumping a half cup worth of distilled water into a red party cup and then adding a tiny bit of baking soda progressively until it tests at 4dkh?
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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-07-2008, 03:57 AM
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Most kH tests are titration's. So all you do is dump and measure like you said. Most test kits use 1 drop of solution = 1 point rise in kH. So what I do is double the amount of sample being used, which is usually 5ml, and use 10ml. This gives me 1 drop of solution = 0.5 point rise in kH in the titration. Its pretty easy. Just be aware that it only takes a few grains of baking soda to reach 4dkH.

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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-07-2008, 04:10 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by colinthebassist View Post
Most kH tests are titration's. So all you do is dump and measure like you said. Most test kits use 1 drop of solution = 1 point rise in kH. So what I do is double the amount of sample being used, which is usually 5ml, and use 10ml. This gives me 1 drop of solution = 0.5 point rise in kH in the titration. Its pretty easy. Just be aware that it only takes a few grains of baking soda to reach 4dkH.

so in theory i could play with the mixture until 4 drops turns 5 ml yellow, and then go back and dump 5ml of the solution into a red cup 4 times (20 ml)
and then try to get it yellow with 16 drops? this would produce a solution that could be accurate to about .25 kh?
AWESOME.

im mixing it right now.
thank you, and i will post back when i get the drop checker in the tank.
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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-07-2008, 04:21 AM Thread Starter
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i got it to go yellow at 4 drops!
were close...
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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-07-2008, 04:41 AM Thread Starter
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i got it to go yellow at 16 drops..
the drop checker is filled and in the tank. i stuck my finger in the bubble inside the bell of the checker to try and squeeze our as much air as i could. so how long until this thing changes colors? an hour or 2?
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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-07-2008, 06:33 PM
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I took your approach as well and came out with something in the 4.5 dkh range...as I was looking for something a little higher than 30 ppm of CO2.

Quote:
Originally Posted by DiscusIt'sWhats4DinneR View Post
i stuck my finger in the bubble inside the bell of the checker to try and squeeze our as much air as i could. so how long until this thing changes colors? an hour or 2?
You did? Is that a good thing?!? It would seem to reduce the amount of space for collecting CO2, but then again, I guess it would reduce the amount 'space' that would need to equalize. Seems a bit 'too impatient' for my tastes .

Seems like mine took a bit longer than two hours, but that could be about right.

On the flip side, should you wish to turn off your CO2 and see a similar drop in CO2 levels, don't expect that to be so quick. You likely already know that, but I saw someone ask in another post. It takes a good long time (without excessive surface agitation) to remove CO2 from the water column, IMO.

Good work!
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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-07-2008, 06:38 PM
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found this article on making 4dkh solution

http://www.aquaticforest.com/guides/...4dkh-solution/
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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-07-2008, 11:38 PM
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I have a Red Sea 100 diffuser and the fine bubbles go everywhere. What about these bubbles getting into the drop checker horn? Will this affect the indicator solution reading?

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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-08-2008, 04:03 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by honor View Post
found this article on making 4dkh solution

http://www.aquaticforest.com/guides/...4dkh-solution/
i saw that one too, but i had no way to measure the water or to weigh the baking soda accurately. i did have a food scale that weighs ounces and grams but it was way too inaccurate for something this delicate. its good for measuring ounces... but into grams and it is no good.

a dollar bill in good condition should weigh one gram. i put a dollar on this scale and it did nothing. i stacked 5 bills on this thing and it still said zero.

6 grams is about 2 teaspoons. i probably couldve tried to measure it this way and used a measuring cup for the water. Instead, i just eyeballed the whole mixture, filled a red cup half full, dumped in about a gram of baking soda, filled another cup half full. i just diluted the baking soda water until i could test it at 4dkh. it works.


from what i have read, less airspace between the drop checker solution and the tank water means a faster reaction. more airspace requires more time to eaqualize the gas concentration of the checker to the concentration of the tank. this is why tom barr made up a checker that used a gas permiable membrane. it has no air gap. the checker responds a whole lot quicker.

im not really concerned about the rection speed, or else i would be on the quest to find a gas permiable membrane and make my own checker. i just want something to tell me how much is too much co2 before the fish do. the price was right, plus the thing looks kinda cool.

anyway, i also read that filling less solution into the drop checker bubble can yeild to faster reaction times, i think the logic behind this is; less solution it has to equalize the quicker the ph can change, therefore the color... can anybody confirm this?
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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-08-2008, 04:14 AM Thread Starter
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[quote=Gad;595170]I have a Red Sea 100 diffuser and the fine bubbles go everywhere. What about these bubbles getting into the drop checker horn? Will this affect the indicator solution reading?[/quote i use a glass and ceramic diffuser and i just mount it under my aquaclear 70 filter..... (i know, i just keep the water level high)

it blows tiny bubbles everywhere.

im sure i waste a bit of co2 but this doesnt worry me as i use a 20 lb tank.
but when those little bubbles get into the horn they can cause the checker give a higher reading than the actual co2 concntration.
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post #11 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-08-2008, 10:37 AM
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[quote=DiscusIt'sWhats4DinneR;595420]
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gad View Post
I have a Red Sea 100 diffuser and the fine bubbles go everywhere. What about these bubbles getting into the drop checker horn? Will this affect the indicator solution reading?[/quote i use a glass and ceramic diffuser and i just mount it under my aquaclear 70 filter..... (i know, i just keep the water level high)

it blows tiny bubbles everywhere.

im sure i waste a bit of co2 but this doesnt worry me as i use a 20 lb tank.
but when those little bubbles get into the horn they can cause the checker give a higher reading than the actual co2 concntration.
That's what I was thinking too.

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post #12 of 12 (permalink) Old 05-08-2008, 03:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gad View Post
I have a Red Sea 100 diffuser and the fine bubbles go everywhere. What about these bubbles getting into the drop checker horn? Will this affect the indicator solution reading?
I have the same question......

The bottom of my RS DC was Full yesterday from what I presume to be collected C02 micros bubbles......

But it still changed color after the C02 was off and was much smaller this morning about 10mins before the light/C02 came on.....

It seems to be working properly, but.....

Anybody have any thoughts on this....?


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