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Michael 10-10-2011 07:25 PM

Club PAR meter
DFW APC has purchased a PAR meter for use by club members. The PAR meter will be demonstrated at our October 2011 meeting, and after that meeting the meter will be available for members to borrow for periods of one week.

In this thread we will post rules and instructions for use of the PAR meter, and also start a sign-up list of member who wish to borrow the meter.

10 October 2011

Who May Use the PAR meter
Any member in good standing of DFW APC may use the club PAR meter, following the rules below. Non-members may not use the meter, except under the direct supervision of a club member during a club sanctioned activity.

Storage of the PAR Meter
When not in use by club members, the meter will be stored by the meter keeper. The meter keeper is a member in good standing of the club, appointed by the Board of Directors. The keeper will properly store the meter, keep records of its use, make the meter available for use by members, and periodically check the condition and operation of the meter.

Check-out Procedures
Any member may check out the meter for a period of one week. Members wishing to check out the meter will contact the meter keeper and make arrangements for pick-up and delivery of the meter. At check out, the member will be given a copy of these rules, and will be required to sign a check out list.

At the end of the one week loan, the member will return the meter to the keeper, who will check its condition and function. The meter will then be available for use by another member. Any member who does not return the meter within one week is subject to a late fee of $10.00 for each week or portion of a week in excess of the original period of the loan. Reasonable exceptions can be made by the keeper in case of hardship or logistics.

Terms of Use and Penalties
The PAR meter must be returned to the meter keeper in the same condition as when it was loaned. The keeper will check the operation and condition of the meter promptly after it is returned by a member, and notify the member if any problems are discovered.

The PAR meter must be used according the manufacturer’s instructions and recommendations at all times. A copy of these instructions will be issued with the meter at the time of loan, and must be returned with the meter.

A member who returns the meter with excessive wear, dirt, or any kind of damage will be assessed a fine. This fine is in addition to any late fees. The amount of the fine may vary depending on the condition of the meter, but will not exceed the cost of new duplicate meter. If a member looses or damages the meter beyond repair, that member will automatically be required to pay the club the full cost of an equal replacement, plus any associated shipping, handling, and sales tax.

Any infraction of these rules may result in a member loosing loan privileges, either temporarily or permanently. A severe infraction may cause membership to be revoked, either temporarily or permanently.

Data Gathering
One of DFW APC’s goals in purchasing the PAR meter and making it available to members is to collect information about PAR values in different aquaria equipped with different kinds of lighting. This information will be made available to the entire membership of DFW APC, and to members of the on-line forum Aquatic Plant Central. For that reason, members who borrow the meter are encouraged, but not required, to report the results they obtain. A sample form is attached for this purpose. Results may also be reported in the DFW APC forum on Aquatic Plant Central.

What Do My Results Mean?
There is no universally accepted interpretation of PAR values for aquaria. Here are two proposed scales for comparison. All values are given in micromoles per square meter per second.

20-40 low light
40-100 medium light
100+ high light
40-70 low light
70-150 medium light
150-300 high light
300-600 very high light

By reporting your results and comparing them to others, you can help to develop realistic guidelines for light levels in planted tanks.

Be Kind to the PAR Meter!
• Keep the protective plastic cap on the sensor except when in use.
• Clean the meter after use with mild soap and water or window cleaner.
• Dry the meter before storing it in the carrying case.
• Don’t pinch the cord when closing the case.

Thank you!

fishyjoe24 10-10-2011 07:55 PM

Re: Club PAR meter
I might be interested in using the par meter... I would like to test out the new zoomed t5 h.o. 2 bulb fixture I got the fixture makes the bulbs close and it gives a box shape highly polished reflector.. for $65.00 i said why not... i'm looking for medium light over my 40g 24 inch tall. according to the light charts 2 t5 h.o. 4 inches above a 24 inch tank will give medium light... i want to find out, and see if $65.00 was a good buy, or if i should of saved up a little more and got a hagen, or coralife, or saved up for a while and got a tek, or a wavepoint..

Michael 10-11-2011 10:31 AM

Re: Club PAR meter
You can download a PDF of the instruction manual for the PAR meter here:

We have Model MQ-200.

wwh2694 10-11-2011 10:49 AM

I want to borrow it too when u get done. Thanks

digital_gods 10-12-2011 12:17 PM

Re: Club PAR meter
Can I be used in our salt water aquariums too?

Michael 10-12-2011 01:00 PM

Re: Club PAR meter
Yes--just rinse and dry the sensor afterward.

digital_gods 10-12-2011 09:34 PM

That's simple enough.

Michael 01-04-2012 03:15 PM

Re: Club PAR meter
Everybody, I've just made this thread a sticky.

The PAR meter has returned from its tour of the western provinces, and is now back in east Dallas and ready to be checked out again. Fishyspots is officially next in line, but may have difficulty coming to pick up the meter because of distance.

In any case, tell me if you want to use the meter and we will schedule a pick-up.


fishyspots 01-04-2012 03:36 PM

Re: Club PAR meter
If someone closer my way wants it next, let them have it then I'll get it from them and return at the meeting. Otherwise, give me a location and day to pick it up and I'll make the trek, preferably on the weekend.

marcio 01-17-2012 11:56 AM

Re: Club PAR meter

hope all is well! I've just paid on paypal for this year's membership. Hard to believe it has been nearly a year since I first joined the club! Could you please add my name to the list for the PAR meter? I live in Uptown Dallas and can pick-up at your place when it is available.

Take care,

Marcio Cardoso

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