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Old 12-06-2011, 11:51 PM   #1
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"lead" weights and aquariums- any definitive answer?

I've heard they're deadly, I heard to not use them at all, I heard they are not made of lead and are perfectly safe, I heard they won't react in water although they are pure lead...

What's up with lead plant weights, like the ones used in Petsmart and Petco? Are they safe or are they not?

I tried wrapping one around a piece of zucchini for a pleco and I was so pleased with how nicely it sunk the vegetable. My roommate came in and positively panicked because of the lead/metal in the water.

Google searches could not give me a definite answer.
I guess to be cautious I won't use them?

Thanks
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Old 12-07-2011, 06:56 AM   #2
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I have heard lead is perfectly fine in an aquarium! I use it!
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Old 12-07-2011, 07:28 AM   #3
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Using Lead in Aquariums

Hello Gaby...

The little research I've done, says that "long term" exposure to lead is toxic. Not sure how long that is really. I've always removed the lead strips and rock wool type materials before planting my plants and don't leave anything that this in my tanks.

Use it if it works for you, but I'd recommend researching an alternative made of a somewhat safer material, like a combination of a rubber suction cup and plastic.

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Old 12-07-2011, 07:41 AM   #4
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Or a small pebble and some cotton?
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Old 12-07-2011, 12:23 PM   #5
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Are you considering using lead wts to anchor plants? I was leary of the lead as well & found a great alternative. Go to 'aquariumplants.com' & search 'plants anchors'. They make these great little plastic plant anchors (set of 4 for $1.89). You just make an appropriate sized hole in the middle, stick the plant in, & cover it with your substrate. No more floating plants!
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Old 12-07-2011, 12:56 PM   #6
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My Lfs sells their plants with ceramic rings attached to em.

I'll try an find a spare one and post a pic
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Old 12-07-2011, 12:57 PM   #7
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Old 12-07-2011, 01:37 PM   #8
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The "lead" weights attached to stem plant a lfs are safe. I was told they are manganese. Not sure if that's the right word. The fish stores get them like that from the distributor. I use them for sinking veggies and one one my fav lfs give me some if I ask for them. This thread reminds to get more next time I go "fishing".
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Old 12-07-2011, 03:38 PM   #9
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They're a Magnesium-Zinc Alloy (Mg/Zn), not to be confused with Manganese :P. They do not dissolve to my knowledge (although this might occur at low pHs, <6), and even then to non-toxic components.

Some older strips are lead, but lead is fortunately quite insoluble in water due to it precipitating out in a number of forms (carbonates being the most common). It also does accumulate like some other metals will (As or Hg).

Stick it in your substrate and leave it there if you see fit to.
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Old 12-07-2011, 05:20 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aqua_chem
They're a Magnesium-Zinc Alloy (Mg/Zn), not to be confused with Manganese :P. They do not dissolve to my knowledge (although this might occur at low pHs, <6), and even then to non-toxic components.

Some older strips are lead, but lead is fortunately quite insoluble in water due to it precipitating out in a number of forms (carbonates being the most common). It also does accumulate like some other metals will (As or Hg).

Stick it in your substrate and leave it there if you see fit to.
Fantastic! Thanks to everyone for the replies!!!


The reason is to just help me sink zucchini. I currently use a fork, but that takes away from the beauty of the tank a "lead" weight wrapped around it would be a lot nicer.

And those ceramic rings are so interesting! I have never seen them used for plants before!
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