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*wipes sweat from brow* Phew now that was a long thread!!! After all that reading....can we just talk about the differences between the two methods. Please correct me if i am wrong, both of these methods use the same ferts in about the same ratio to one another? It seems to me that the only diff is how often and how much you dose. Am I missing something. Asside from routine of doesing what is the difference?
jB
 

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At the very least, the PPS method forces an aquarist to consider more carefully what is being put into an aquarium at what amounts. It certainly does no harm to try for a better understanding. I am content to stay on the sidelines of this thread as an oberver while at the same time putting in some unseen effort into re-teaching myself the chemistry and calculation methods shared by the participants. It was a long time ago I studied Chemistry at London University and I need to buff up my act ;-)

Over to you....

Andrew Cribb
 

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Discussion Starter · #44 · (Edited)
Jason Baliban said:
*wipes sweat from brow* Phew now that was a long thread!!! After all that reading....can we just talk about the differences between the two methods. Please correct me if i am wrong, both of these methods use the same ferts in about the same ratio to one another? It seems to me that the only diff is how often and how much you dose. Am I missing something. Asside from routine of doesing what is the difference?
jB
Originally that was the intent.

I see the methods as extremely similar as much as we might want to split hairs.

Both assume that algae are not limited by nutrients and that enough nutrients are added to support plant growth at a given light level, whatever that level of light intensity might be. Those are the several massive changes we have seen from other methods of the past including reef methods, non CO2 methods describe by Diana Walstad. Another is the test kit inaccuracies and the use of standards. That caused a great deal of confusion in the hobby. PPS would be plagued by issues here if this was not addressed since it relies on test kits. Traces and testing those are still an issue, although I'd argue a minor one for PPS. I eyeball that as does everyone for the most part.

If I'm going to eyeball that, I can eyeball other larger % nutrients in terms of plant health.

While testing is great and useful, especially to get a feel for some more advanced approaches, an aquarist can certainly move beyond test kits altogather with PPS over long peroids with most plants as they become more experienced.

One uses water changes and the other uses test kits to provide a stable environment for plants, but there are cross overs here and mixing between these methods, neither is exclusively a pure method.

I asked many questions to get people to think about these things.
A non CO2 method can be done in the method described by DW, Edward or myself effectively.

Plants can be used as your "test kits", fewer or greater water changes, % changed can be done, dolomite can be used, good test kits can be used, activated carbon, less light and it's influences.

I still find doing weekly water changes makes a tank look better than not doing them.

In giving advice to folks with algae issues, plant problems, PPS is tough sell due to all the testing and chem and requires more understanding for the user than say EI(Often it's a tough sell no matter how I suggest it as soon as you say KNO3.......), but non CO2 methods have both of those methods beat if fish food and tops offs are all you want to do, but you give up nicer growth and better results somewhat in doing that.

But to an experience person willing to test seeking a balance to their farm without water changes or a reduce number of them, sure, then it's a good sell. But I am thinking much further ahead than many assumed.........using the plants as your test kits as you become more familar with the dosing and push pull of the dosing routines is what I am hinting at.
I know that many folks after a number of years are able to do this effectively.
Edward seemed to scoff at the viability of this notion...........it does work.

I know better........I use those kits to gain knowledge so I do not need the test kits forever.

In that sense, it's evolved further than PPS and requires more experience and knowledge.....also a tough sell......but PPS is a good path for folks seeking a more advanced approach to the nutrients pull/push effects or simply bored or have mastered EI or non CO2 methods. But like a water change, you can fall back on the test kits or water changes.

You can test and do all this with a non CO2 tank as well.
I did this the last couple of years off and on on the 4 gal cubes I had.
I also had a very nice tank in SB in 2002 with a nice field of hairgrass in a non CO2 tank. I think I can do it without test kits also (No water changes and dosing).

I found the higher the light, the more issues I ran into doing that.
The same can be said of any method IME.

Regards,
Tom Barr
 

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TDS meter?

So the HM digital TDS meter from Air, water and Ice Co. reads in ppm . THe PPS worksheet expects micro Siemens. Is there a handy conversion? Come to think of it, is the TDS used at all in the worksheet's other calcs or in fine tuning the method? Seems to be just nice to know, but not used.

Did I miss something? Just montoring your resins from RO/DI to predict changeout. Maybe watching the overall TDS of aquarium to make sure it doesn't get too high and in need of a water change?

My tap is 124 ppm and my tank is 447 ppm.

Maybe this relates to Edward's unrelated quest to breed tetra by keeping water soft?
 

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Jeff Kropp said:
correction* the classic Estimative Index doses once after each weekly water change.

Some people have also added a midweek booster dose and this variation has evolved into the odd-even hybrid for others. These daily dosers are not practicing Estimative Index procedures; even tho they may be following EI ppm guidelines.
Hi Jeff
I am not sure if I understand. If daily dosers are not practicing Estimative Index procedures then what is this?

Tom Barr said:
The Estimative Index of Dosing

Dosing
1/4 teaspoon 4x a week (every other day)
1/16" teaspoon of KH2PO4 4x a week (every other day)
Traces added on off days as the macro nutrients, so 3x a week, 5mls each time.

So the aquarist dose only 3 things really, KNO3, KH2PO4 on the day of the water change then every other day there after, traces of the off day till the next week rolls around.
Copyright 2004: Tom Barr
 

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Edward said:
I am not sure if I understand. If daily dosers are not practicing Estimative Index procedures then what is this?
Tom did not invent the estimative index. He was an early adoptor and has been perhaps its most active evangelist. What he advocates in your quoted post reflects his evolution out of the original idea; it has now become something entirly different. Estimative Index is at its heart a simple weekly flush and fill method with a set of recomended target ppms for refill parameters. The EI has always been a simplified method of introducing novices to aquatic plant supplementation. More advanced hobbiests are expected to fine tune in order to achieve a wide range of variations. I think your PPS system has more in common with the practice of these advanced hobbiests.

Here is an early estimative index artical by Steve Dixon: http://www.sfbaaps.com/reference/dixon_01_01.shtml
Of special interest is the precautionary statement that Dixon closes with. I think this may be the tank he mentions: http://showcase.aquatic-gardeners.org/2001.cgi?&op=showcase&category=0&vol=3&id=68

More about the estimative index's origins can be found in the APD archives circa 1998-2002. Steve Dixon prompts this investigation but many people contribute to its conclusions. If you trace the origins you will find that Tom Barr's success with large waterchanges and minimal supplementation was instrumental in changing the dominant PMDD thinking about P.

One major difference that I see in what APC practitioners recomend vs. classical EI is that they see the index as indicating minimum values and have escalated ppm recomendations. Tom Barr for example, can often be observed claiming that much higher ppm values will not have detrimental effects. This implies that excess is preferable to shortage. While these concentrations may not often produce noticable algae problems I have observed that they can be quite detrimental to the health of fish.

My personal husbandry practice has backed off of daily supplementation and now includes a rest day. It is as follows: 1st day - 1/4 tsp KNO3 + 1/4 tsp enema, 2nd day - 10 ml TMG, 3rd day - rest, repeat previous 3 day cycle, then on day seven do a 10 gal. WC with 1/4 tsp Epsom salt, 1/4 tsp CaCO3 and 10 ml TMG. Tank size is 60 gal with 190 watts of light for 10 hours. Fish health has improved.
 
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