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Replacement for Seachem


Lemonfish

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Hi guys, this is probably a repost......

What do you guys use for ph adjusters and essential element supplements?

For the last 3 years I've been using Seachem Cichlid Lake Salt and Malawi Victoria Buffer in combination and have had no problems, only downside is cost and with me looking at expanding my hobby I think I may need to source a substitute.

So if you guys(and gals) can give me options I would appreciate it (or where to find the same product at a better price)

Also I use Prime as my water conditioner and I have always found it excellent but also where can I get a good price on it?

Also off topic, what sort of price would I pay for a piece of 6mm 450x350??A few dollars I'm thinking but I may be in for a shock.

Also need to know what silicone from Bunnings is suitable for aquarium use?

Sorry for all the?????? but I know you guys are a reliable bunch with your info thumb.gif

Thanx in advance

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Although these products are expensive they are also a lot better. The dosage is a lot smaller and you may save money in the long run.

Bruce

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Hi guys, this is probably a repost......

What do you guys use for ph adjusters and essential element supplements?

For the last 3 years I've been using Seachem Cichlid Lake Salt and Malawi Victoria Buffer in combination and have had no problems, only downside is cost and with me looking at expanding my hobby I think I may need to source a substitute.

So if you guys(and gals) can give me options I would appreciate it (or where to find the same product at a better price)

I use the aquasonic stuff, but I only buffer to about 100-120ppm so the water is pretty close to the water at the LFS so any fish I sell have a better chance of surviving in the local tap water (thanks to Dfishkeeper for that tip).

I think you'll find using it to proper lake type preameters the seachem stuff lasts longer & may actually break even or come out in front compared to the aquasonic. Try to buy it in larger quantities, some people on this board sell it by the kilo too but other than that I have no idea how to get cheaper.

other than that, buffering substrate or crushed marble/limestone/shells in the filters.

Also I use Prime as my water conditioner and I have always found it excellent but also where can I get a good price on it?

maybe switch to Safe instead, virtually the same stuff in powdered form. Otherwise maybe try Aquastar, it neutralises all the same gear & has a nice low dose rate.

Also off topic, what sort of price would I pay for a piece of 6mm 450x350??A few dollars I'm thinking but I may be in for a shock.

Also need to know what silicone from Bunnings is suitable for aquarium use?

last time I did a tank repair I got a 400x500 sheet of 6mm from a glazier for like $20, ring around & find someone who'll do offcuts cheap & is aquarium friendly.

From Bunnings I'd get Selleys Glass, don't think they stock that GE stuff (at least not here in hicksville).

hope this helps

Ash raisehand.gif

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Lemon -

For most cichlids buffers and salts are a total waste of time and money. Yes, rift lake cichlids need alkaline water. This is easily and safely achieved with a simple buffering substrate. All the malawi cichlids I've kept and a range of lamprologine cichlids from Lake Tanganyika breed and live happy normal lives without buffers.

To give an analogy think of it like this:

Cacti thrive in arid dry conditions. In some places they get virtually no rainfall. Does that mean you should not water them? Of course not, actually they do BETTER with a little water. BUT.... water the plants too much, when it's not warm and you'll kill them.

The same thing applies to rift lake cichlids in my opinion. Matching their environment precisely doesnt give you benefits necessarily. What they DO need is stable, alkaline pH.... this can be acheived without problems with a buffering substrate alone.

No doubt there'll be a crowd of people saying it is better to match nature etc. To those folk I say I hope you keep your nitrates to 0 ppm, feed them only sporadically (notice most fish in the lake are VERY skinny!).... and eat most of the fry woot.gif.

See the discussion here for the views (from both pro- and con-buffer people)

http://www.aceforums.com.au/index.php?showtopic=19298

I dont think there is any compelling evidence to suggest buffer use is of benefit. Furthermore, your money would be better spent (IMHO, again) on a quality heater, filter and food. ie: Things that are actually likely to affect your fishes health. There are some claims in the above topic that people have actually tested the effects of buffers etc. But they've done so in a unreplicated, uncontrolled environment and these claims are due a healthy dose of skeptism.

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Since the discussion which YeW has mentioned, I stopped using my normal buffer products in one of my tanks. Instead I relied on the buffering qualities of my crushed marble substrate, and treated the water using everyday Rock salt and Sea salt from the supermarket.

I haven't seen any ill effects at all, and in fact my fish are doing better in that tank than they were when I was using some expensive buffer and salt additives.

Now, I am aware this experiment is are not at all scientific and cannot be proven, but my findings are no less reliable than those who say their fish do better when using product xyz...

Neither is scientific, because there are so many other variables to take into account. However I have proven that it is certainly possible to keep african cichlids and have them thriving, healthy and breeding, without the need for expensive buffers. I'm so impressed with the results that I now use that method on all my tanks. I now have some seachem buffers and salts going cheap LOL.gif

The salt I use is a mixture of roughly 70% Rock salt and 30% Sea salt. I add it to the tanks at waterchange time at a rate of 5g/10L (only treating the volume of new water being added).

Give it a go and see. It might just work for you too smile.gif

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For information: most "rock salt" is sea salt - but not always. So while you are mainly getting Na and Cl ions, you are also adding smaller amounts of: Mg, S, Ca, Br, B, Sr and Si (in decreasing order).

This in combination with the solubilising limestone substrate provides a vertiable wealth of different minerals. Limestone is mainly calcite - but contains lots of other minerals.... which are variously soluble.

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I have tried going without seachem products for approx 6 months and have found that the fish in particular Altos, leptosoma and frontosa breed less and have fewer fry. Im not sure whether it is linked with the seachem products or the temperature variations Ipswich has?

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Im not sure whether it is linked with the seachem products or....

I'm with you on this one, there's too many other variables which are not taken into account to say whether it is the buffers or not.

I'm actually getting bigger mouthfuls in my tank wink2.gif

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Hi Efc -

That's exactly the point. Without appropriate, side-by-side controls it's next to impossible to decide....

then I think this applies:

Given that the two appear very similar (if not the same) - why pay the money? For "peace-of-mind"? for those buying buffer I know of a great deal with these Nigerian dudes wink2.gif... all you need to do is "mind" the money :D!

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