How can I test a rock....
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How can I test a rock....

This is a discussion on How can I test a rock.... within the Beginner Freshwater Aquarium forums, part of the Freshwater Fish and Aquariums category; --> to see if it is safe to put in a tank? I would like to put a couple of rock with some java moss ...

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How can I test a rock....
Old 10-10-2010, 08:32 PM   #1
 
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How can I test a rock....

to see if it is safe to put in a tank? I would like to put a couple of rock with some java moss on them in my shrimp tank I recently set up and need to know how to test the rock to make sure its ok.
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Old 10-10-2010, 08:35 PM   #2
 
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Drop some acid on it and if it fizzes, it's no good. You can use a strong vinegar, but ideally you'd use something stronger than that like a weak solution of hydrochloric acid or some such.
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Old 10-10-2010, 08:40 PM   #3
 
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I have some clear vinager would that work? I don't have any acid and I am not sure were you could buy it at. LOL Then I am guessing I could pour boiling water over it several times to kill any bad things it may have right?
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Old 10-10-2010, 10:15 PM   #4
 
Boiled water will kill any harmful organisms but if the composition of the rock contains some harmful metal or soluble mineral it won't remove it. Vinegar should work fine. Buying, sandstone, limestone, or slate (sedimentary stones in general) at a landscaping store or a LFS is your best bet. If you are going to get really into aquascaping, learning to ID these rocks by sight and finding a place that carries them will pay off a lot in the future once you begin replacing the artificial decor in your tank you won't want to stop until everything is natural. Java Moss also anchors most easily to these porous sedimentary stones.
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Old 10-11-2010, 08:20 AM   #5
 
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Thanks Russellthats why I am going to look for a rock to put in one of my tanks I have a pretty good size clump of java moss that I am going to put part of on a piece of driftwood and the other part on a piece of rock.
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Old 10-11-2010, 01:43 PM   #6
 
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Bryon told me in one of my threads that you can use one of the parts of the nitrAte test (api master test kit)) as your acid. I think you need to use the one that you are suppose to shake for 2 mins.
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Old 10-11-2010, 04:33 PM   #7
 
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All right maybe to be safe I will try all 3 on the rock I pick out. LOL I went to the LFS and they had the perfect rock but it was $2.99 a pound and it weighed 5 pounds and I just can't see paying that much for a rock. Thanks guys for all your help.
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Old 10-11-2010, 04:55 PM   #8
 
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I get mine from fish stores (the "lace rock" I think it is called) and some from the lanscape or quarry places. "River rock" as they term it is usually safe. As is slate that someone mentioned, and quartz. Limestone will work but only in tanks where you want basic hard water as it will slowly raise the hardness and pH by releasing calcium and magnesium. In livebearer or rift lake cichlid aquaria, this is ideal.

To ascertain if the rock is calcareous (limestone, dolomite, marble, lava are) the "acid" test is the No. 2 regent in the nitrate test kit; it will be labelled as an acid, and it is strong enough to test for calcium. But that is all it tests. There is no way to determine what, if anything, may be "absorbed" into the rock.

Vinegar can sometimes work for the acid test, but it is really not a strong acid--after all, we do consume it.
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Old 10-11-2010, 05:18 PM   #9
 
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Does anybody know what this type of rock is called? I use to know when I was in school but it was a long time ago. LOL Will it work in the tank? I did the acid test and it did not bubble.
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Old 10-13-2010, 10:22 AM   #10
 
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Try to wash it better. It looks like Quartz, which will work if there aren't any metallic veins... It's hard to tell if that's red dirt, or rust
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