EI DOSING USING DRY SALTS

Discussion in 'Tutorials' started by ceg4048, 23 Mar 2008.

  1. ian_m

    ian_m Global Moderator Staff Member

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    Ask the plants? Do they care ? I just dose in one go, cos the plants told me so !!!!!
     
  2. TarkMalbot

    TarkMalbot Member

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    Lol. Did you ask the fish? And if so what did they say? Something along the lines of "not bothered as long as you give us some fresh water now and then and do t turn the Co2 up too high?"
     
  3. David Shanahan

    David Shanahan Member

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    This may have already been answered. But I'm not going over 262 messages to find it. Without testing, how do you really know what uptake is. Or what algae appears first for each deficiency?
     
  4. ceg4048

    ceg4048 Expert/Global Moderator Staff Member

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    Hello,
    The real question is: "Why do you care what the uptake rate is?"
    The dosing scheme is designed to eliminate the possibility of nutrient deficiency, therefore, If there are no signs of nutrient deficiency then the uptake rate is fine. In any case, testing could never answer that question because the kits are not even close to being accurate, so people only ever THOUGHT they knew what the uptake rate was, but this was all an illusion. Uptake rates are variable and are dependent on many different factors. The goal should never be to determine uptake rate. It should be to maximize plant health. There is very little value in chasing numbers.

    If you want to know which algae appears for specific deficiencies then study the data provided on James' Planted Tank - Algae Guide The data there are mostly correct.

    Cheers,
     
    David Shanahan likes this.
  5. Edvet

    Edvet Forum Moderator Staff Member

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    Ok i real all till page 6,.......then i got overwhelmed.:confused:
    Trying to figure it out for my own tank. It's 400 gallon and i don't do 50% waterchanges. I usually have continuous refreshing app 100 liters/day.\
    So there is a slight danger of overdosing. Using the 20 gallon example i should aim for 45tbs KNO3 and 15 po4 AND 120 mGsO4 in a months supply. Not doing the waterchange i take 50% of those amounts and wil go with that for now. Seems reasonable?
     
  6. ceg4048

    ceg4048 Expert/Global Moderator Staff Member

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    Hi,
    Yes it seems reasonable as long as the plants do not suffer deficiency. I never correlate "danger" with "overdosing". I overdose all the time and never have a problem. People who don't dose enough are always having problems such as algae or poor growth performance, and I'm pretty sure that cleaning algae from a 400 gallon tank is not fun, so the last thing I would be worried about is overdosing.

    The only imperative I can see in the case of a 400 tank is the COST associated with the dosing program, and the maintenance required due to the dosing and the CO2 addition. If you are replacing 100L/day (175 gallons per week) then this is pretty much a 50% per week water change so I don't really see any issues and I don't really consider that there is a possibility of overdosing.

    Depending on your tap water, you might be able to realize some cost savings by reducing, or even deleting the Epsom Salt addition entirely.

    Cheers,
     
  7. Ben Hooper

    Ben Hooper Member

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    Working on the basis,

    You get:
    1 x 500g Potassium Nitrate
    1 x 250g Potassium Phosphate
    1 x 500g Magnesium Sulphate

    Macro Solution
    Mix, Shake & Leave to Dissolve Overnight:
    4tsp Potassium Nitrate
    1tsp Potassium Phosphate
    6tsp Magnesium Sulphate
    500ml Water

    so for 1 Potassium Phosphate you need 6 Magnesium Sulphate and 4 Potassium Nitrate you'll need 6 and 4 times as much respectively. Simple really,

    So you'll need
    1000g Potassium Nitrate
    250g Potassium Phosphate
    1500g Magnesium Sulphate

    Therefore the below takes this into consideration and in theory everything will run out at the same time (assuming that the weight of a teaspoon of each is the same)

    Does this seem right?

    It seemed the starters would have some chemicals with loads left and some with none otherwise...
     
  8. ceg4048

    ceg4048 Expert/Global Moderator Staff Member

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    Hello,
    I agree that EI is much simpler than people give it credit for, however, I'm not really sure where we're going with this. The starter pack provided to you by our kind sponsors, are designed within the context such that product weights are based on the per unit cost of the various salts. It may be that KNO3 and MgSO4 are twice as cheap as KH2PO4, so the supplier has to package the powders that makes economic sense as well as to satisfying the performance requirements.

    That is also why it is called the "Starter Pack". It gets you started. After that, you will probably have figured out how much of each powder you tank needs or how much you can get away with. This means you will figure out what to buy, and when to replace the stock.

    Dosing is a very personal thing. More dosing produces more growth and more organic waste. This then requires more maintenance. Depending on flow/distribution, lighting and injection rate, a tank may require more of this or it might be able to do just fine with less of that. If your tank suffered chronic BGA, for example, then you would have to consider dosing more KNO3 for that tank at that particular time in it's development. If that tank was prone to GSA, then more PO4/CO2 is called for.

    EI is an interactive procedure, so that the numbers given with the pack are good for "Starters". It never even occurs to me that any powder should run out at the same time as others. I can always see when I'm running out of something. If I need a powder, I get it. If I want to be efficient, then the lowest supply of powder is a proxy vote for ordering more of everything. It's very easy, and so really, it's not something we should ever really worry about.There are loads of items to be concerned about when attempting to optimize your tank's performance, believe me, but this is not one of those items.

    Cheers,
     
  9. plantbrain

    plantbrain Expert

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    Start off with the standard non limiting, then tweak from there.

    Fairly simple and common sense.

    I think most like to over complicate.

    While you can continue to add and do good sized water changes frequently, these are not bad things/habits for any aquarists, they might not (99% they will not be required to dose so high) be required to dose so high or so frequent, /high % water changes.
    So you can simply reduce the amounts slightly each 2-3 week period with dosing.
    Observing plants and algae presence is key.(This is good regardless of dosing methods)
    Once you notice a negative response, you bump back up to that last highest value.
    Then you can likely reduce the % and/or frequency of water changes.
    I prefer to say on top of water changes, they keep the tank clean and never harm the plants etc. In other words, many water changes only helps the tank and mitigates issues with new tanks and newbies alike.

    Conceptually, EI is extremely simple.

    Dose just enough to make it non limiting through the week for any light value
    Do good sized water changes.
    Result: stable non limiting nutrients.
    We dose 3-4 things and that's it. Some do this once a day, some do it 2x a week etc.
    Then water change, repeat.

    It's not going to simplify any further than this.
    These are not my ideas, they are just ideas I have argued for.
     
  10. Edvet

    Edvet Forum Moderator Staff Member

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    Just another question. From the back of my (ageing) mind to go from grams KNO3 to ppm we have to go through Avogrado's constant, don't we.
    Anyone care to fo de math on a napkin for me. (I was thinking to get to 20 ppm i need app 50 grams of KNO3 for my 1500 lit tank).
     
  11. dw1305

    dw1305 Expert

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  12. Edvet

    Edvet Forum Moderator Staff Member

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    Thx, again:p
     
  13. ceg4048

    ceg4048 Expert/Global Moderator Staff Member

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    If I were you I would completely forget about calculating PPM. All you have to do as instructed in the tutorial is the multiply the 20USG dosing by the ratio of your tank size to 20G. If you have a 400G tank then the ratio is 400/20 = 20. That's because a 400 gallon tank is exactly 20 times bigger than a 20 gallon tank. You then multiply the dosing scheme given in the tutorial by 20. That's all.
    You do not need to build a rocket ship to travel to Alpha Seti IV.

    The dosing scheme would then simply be:
    Sunday 50% or more Water Change then dose 20* [3/16 teaspoon KNO3] + 20*[1/16 teaspoon KH2PO4] + 20*[½ teaspoon MgSO4]
    Monday 20*(1/16 teaspoon CSM+B)
    Tuesday - 20* [3/16 teaspoon KNO3] + 20*[1/16 teaspoon KH2PO4] + 20*[½ teaspoon MgSO4]
    Wednesday - 20*(1/16 teaspoon CSM+B)
    Thursday - 20* [3/16 teaspoon KNO3] + 20*[1/16 teaspoon KH2PO4] + 20*[½ teaspoon MgSO4]
    Friday Rest
    Saturday - Rest

    With simple arithmetic
    You get 5.6 teaspoons of KNO3, which you can round up to 6 or down to 5 teaspoons, dosed thrice per week.
    You get 1.2 teaspoons of KH2PO4, which can round up to 2 or round down to 1 teaspoons, dosed thrice per week.
    You get 1.2 teaspoons of Trace which can round up to 2 or round down to 1 teaspoons, dosed two times per week.
    You get exactly10 teaspoon of MgSO4 which you can delete altogether if your water has Mg or if you are remineralizing with a Magnesium containing product, or which you can modify at leisure to any value that makes sense to you taking into consideration what hardness and TDS you are comfortable with for your fish, and how much maintenance you feel comfortable with, because dosing these salts will affect conductivity and will cause plants to excrete more organic pollution into the tank.

    Chasing PPM was what the dosing scheme was trying to avoid. They are basic numbers as a guideline, but you do not need to follow them to the nearest micromole. Use the values that work for you. It may be higher or lower than that which is specified. Only geeks chase PPM because having molar accuracy has no bearing whatsoever on the effectiveness of this dosing scheme. Therefore it is wasted energy.

    Cheers,
     
  14. Edvet

    Edvet Forum Moderator Staff Member

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    Thx again, i'm used to think in mg/kg so ppm helps me. Now i just need to find a cheap source here in the netherlands:D need to buy it by the kg....(and not get arrested for trying to make a bomb).
     
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  15. Jason Stanford

    Jason Stanford Member

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    is the EI dosing for the 20 gallon tank in UK gallons or US?
     
  16. ceg4048

    ceg4048 Expert/Global Moderator Staff Member

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    It won't make any difference, however everything is based on USG.

    Cheers,
     
  17. Jason Stanford

    Jason Stanford Member

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  18. Rob P

    Rob P Member

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    Hi,

    I have just ordered EI starter kit. I'm relatively comfortable with the mechanics of it all (and know someone who lives close by using EI who is happy to help) yet will read more before implementation.

    My question relates to water changes and dosing. Everyone says multiple large water changes are not a bad thing for fish or plants. I'm doing 3 x large (50%'ish) water changes a week to ward off nasty diatoms/brown algae and will continue to do so until I have a clean tank. At the minute I dose an all in one liquid fert daily so simply dose in the mornings, 50% change late evening 3 times per week, then following morning I dose the all in one again.

    What about dosing requirements with EI and the more frequent than once weekly water changes?

    Thanks,
    Rob :)
     
  19. Edvet

    Edvet Forum Moderator Staff Member

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    I'd say in stead of 3 large doses, do 6 half ones, It's all about having plenty available every day.
     
  20. Cherry

    Cherry Member

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    Phew - I have just joined and have read every post in EI - what I am going to do is buy from Aquarium plant and dose and lots of water changes.Never had a problem with algae :rolleyes: except when my CO2 line blew off i when I was on holiday ...loads of black hair algae. Siamese algae eaters helped with that! I think after reading all that I am off to the CO2 page to read that !(as a gardner if this helps - grow things in pots -need to feed and water as the nutrients get washed out whereas the garden doesn't need as much ( sort of an analogy with tanks and rivers...except you take water out.
    Will step up my water changes after I have read all this also not so frightened of the powders so should save money? .I lose my pink plants (technical eh?) so after reading all this I think it might be C02 !!! A convoluted way of saying thanks!
     
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