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You all have some of the best aquarium pictures I have seen, and are obviously wise and intelligent aquariasts.

Geez I hope the people in the know have been sufficiently buttered up. I am setting up a new tank. It is not my first, but I recently had an unfortunate new tank experience in which 8 of 9 fish died, and I would like to avoid that with the new one by doing things right from the beginning.

I have read a great deal about cycling a new tank without fish, and it seems there are 2 basic methods. One is to cut up raw shrimp and let it rot in your tank. Sounds a bit vile to me. I wouldn't wanna move into a house where a giant shrimp had decomposed. The other is to use "pure" ammonia.

Does pure ammonia refer to ammonia that is free of dyes or scents, or do they mean pure as in laboratory quality chemicals? If they do mean lab quality, does anyone know of a source? My confusion comes in at the "pure" word. Some pages just say ammonia others say pure and others say unscented.

I am almost sure someone has asked this before, but I searched and searched and read several pages of posts before I gave up and asked.

Here is a quote from one of the pages I am talking about

Instead of using fish food for ammonia production, we can also introduce pure ammonia to the tank.

After the tank has been set up (see above), add 5 drops of ammonia per 10 Gallons into the water on a daily basis.
Ammonia will rise to 5 ppm and higher. As soon as nitrites are measurable, reduce the ammonia input to 3 drops per day. Nitrites will rise to similar levels. Keep adding 2-3 drops until the measurements of ammonia and nitrites come out with 0 ppm. The tank has then
 

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You can get pure ammonia at hardware store..... yes it need s to be free of dies and and all that but ammonia is a common cleaning supply. You may have to search for it alittle so if you have a mom pop store like ACE, check there first. The other sourcthtasrigth e for ammonia would be yourself...... thats right you liquid waste (pee). I know 2 people from other places that say they added that to the tank after they could not find bottle ammiona, so they went to the source.
 

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I have ammonia without dies or scents added. It says clear ammonia on the label, but after I read the ingredients I started to get worried. There are only 2 ingredients: Ammonium Hydroxide, and surfactant (a generic term as far as I can tell for things that reduce the surface tension of water... as in soap bubble making stuff).

So you are saying I can find just straight Ammonia at the hardware store, or will it also have a surfactant in it. Since surfactant is a generic term should I trust that the kind that is in there is safe, or is Wiki wrong, and it is a general term for only one thing that accomplishes that goal such as glycerin?

Thanks for the tip, but I am not putting pee in my tank :). It's actually urea which eventually breaks down into ammonia mixed in with all the other stuff you body didn't want in the first place. They used to treat cloth with it in the dark ages, before and after them too I suppose, to clean it and soften it. There's some useles information for ya. I doubt that was a smell they ever got all the way out.
 

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I would see if you can fine pure ammonia with out anything..... I just talked with a friends and he seid he found his at ACE. I remember my mother using ammonia as kid to clean
 

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I am setting up a new 35 gal tank and what I now tried is I put in 9 pretty good size angels and a few dojo loaches to get the ammonia started for 5 days then took the angels out into a different tank and left the dojos. This is working quite well that the dojos can handle the ammonia and nitrate changes and the angels got the ammonia and dirt started as we all know angels are extremely dirty. It may be farfetched but it worked for me.
 
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