ok im starting a 10 gallon fishless cycle tomorrow and i need some basic information i watched 2 tutorial videos and im convinced im going to use pure ammonia
what kind of test kit do i need?
once done how much of a water change should i do b4 introducing my one betta?
should i do anything after introducing my betta?
how long does this take with pure amonia?
I'm just starting my first fishless cycling myself, but I believe any testing kits that test for ammonia, nitrItes, and nitrAtes will do. ( I had to buy one kit for each). When you do your big water change before adding the betta, I believe you are to test for nitrAtes, but I forget the level they are supposed to be at. Other than that, I can't help you.
I use the API Master Kit. It's important to use a liquid kit since they are the most accurate and will give you the most tests for your money. Dip strips are very expensive per test in comparison and aren't nearly as accurate.
Do a large water change once the cycle is complete--at least 60%. Test the water after you've changed it to make sure the nitrates are in the low range.
After you introduce your betta you will just have to keep up with the weekly partial water changes and gravel cleaning--your betta should be acclimated to the tank slowly.
The length of the cycle depends on a lot of factors--aeration, heat, ammonia levels, available surfaces for the bacteria to colonize, and whether or not the tank is seeded with bacteria from another tank and/or with a cycling product. If the temperature, aeration, and filter media are optimal and you seed the tank from a mature filter it can take 5-7 days if everything is done correctly. Without seeding the tank at all, it can take around 3 weeks.