Hennie Please can you help - Chemicals

Discussion in 'General Discussions and Advice' started by vatso, 22 Apr 2010.

  1. vatso

    vatso

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    Hi Hennie

    there is so much info on chemicals we can use that just starts getting me head sore.

    Right I use the following in good amounts & am looking for a cheaper option.

    I am looking for really like for like. is this right & will there be a build up using the cheaper option?

    Gebluste Kalk / slaked lime = Kalk Wasser (Shops Sell)
    Baking Soda = KH Buffer (Shops Sell)
    ???? = Calcium (Shops Sell)
    ???? = Magnesium (Shops Sell)

    I know Kalk can assist with CA needs but am looking for a CA only product as well

    thank you in advance

    Vatso
     
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  3. Midasblenny

    Midasblenny

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    Baking soda alone for kH is not good long term vatso.
    Most buffers have at least 4 different compounds blended as close as possible to NSW.
    Calcium chloride is used by many for Ca as well as kalk additions.
    Calcium Oxide can also be used but definetely dissolved in RO first as it will produce heat.
     
  4. dallasg

    dallasg Moderator MASA Contributor

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    look here for magnesium
     
  5. vatso

    vatso Thread Starter

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    What do they do the chemicals I am very new & stupid with this stuff

    can we like get an idiots guide here.

    IE

    KH = Baking Soda 80% - Buy from Dischem
    Other stuff 5%- Buy from .....
    Other stuff 5% - Buy from ...
    Other stuff 5% - buy from ...

    in that way I can make 1KG dry products which I can mix daily as I currently do with the stuff I am buying

    thanks
     
  6. vatso

    vatso Thread Starter

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  7. Reef Maniac

    Reef Maniac MASA Contributor

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    Yes, it is... and is exactly what I have posted in the very top sticky on my forum - http://www.marineaquariumsa.com/showthread.php?t=3375

    Actually, it does not. Dr. Holmes-Farley's recipe specifically allows for the addition of 3 major constituents, namely calcium (the calcium chloride), magnesium (the magnesium sulphate £ magnesium chloride mix) and carbonate alkalinity (sodium bicarbonate or sodium carbonate). He (and I, in my article) stresses the fact that the additions should be ionically balanced - that's what the recipes are for...

    Lime water is IMHO the best, and easiest to use, "balanced" calcium and alkalinity additive, and should be used by everyone. It DOES have some inherent risks, though, and should be used sensibly (and again IMHO never added via an auto top-up device or "kalk stirrer" coupled to a fresh water top-up system. The ONLY ways to use kalk/lime is via a slow drip system, or as a "direct slurry inject" system, but the latter ONLY is you are experienced, AND have an electronic pH measuring devise continuously monitoring the tank water (in fact, as far as I'm concerned, ALL tanks should have this...).

    If your calcium, magnesium or alkalinity level is out of whack to begin with, I would advise to firstly do a few largish (15% - 25% maximum) partial water changes (this alone would correct the majority of ionic imbalances and go a long way towards correcting the levels of magnesium, calcium and alkalinity). After this, you should adjust the levels to where you want them by using "single" products such as calcium chloride or sodium bicarbonate (note, natural sea water only has a calcium level of about 380 - 400ppm, and you really don't need this level to be any higher...). Once all levels are where you want them (and in balanced proportions), you should maintain these levels by either adding "balanced" supplements such as those from Dr. Holmes-Farley's recipe, by only dripping lime water (perhaps "spiked" with some vinegar, if needed) or by running a calcium reactor (the best in the long run).

    Hennie.
     
  8. frankie fish

    frankie fish

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    uhm,sorry 2 jump in,i'm using normal chalk sticks (white) for calsium,and so far so good. I pop 1 stick per week,not exactly rocket science
     
  9. Reef Maniac

    Reef Maniac MASA Contributor

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    But... if I may say... not doing much to add calcium to your water either... if it is blackboard chalk.

    Blackboard chalk consists of calcium carbonate (unless somebody has changes the formulation without telling me), which is the same stuff that coral skeletons are made of. Calcium carbonate is pretty stable in sea water, and only dissolves back into calcium and carbonate ions in water with a pH of lower than 7 - this is why corals don't "dissolve" in our tanks, and why we use calcium reactors to generate a low enough pH to dissolve the aragonite / crushed coral medium we use in it.

    Blackboard chalk is made of compressed calcium carbonate "dust" - I think what is happening in your case is that the chalk stick "melts" - i.e. the individual dust particles become suspended in the water, and would quite likely either settle out in a low-flow area, or be skimmed out by the skimmer - neither way would result in any Ca+ ions being dissolved in the water, and would thus not be bio-available for the creatures that need calcium.

    Interesting idea, though. If the blackboard chalk does not contain any detrimental matter, I suppose it would be a very cheap source if one could find a way of dissolving the dust. I doubt if the sticks would be stable enough for use in a calcium reactor (I think they will "melt" to mud...), but one could possibly dissolve them in vinegar... that would then give calcium acetate (I think), which could be pretty useful... One could perhaps also place a stick into the RO water reservoir, and perhaps bubble some CO2 through it to make the RO water acidic - one would need very little CO2 to do this, I think... Must buy myself a box of chalk and play around with this idea... THANKS

    Hennie
     
  10. Trev

    Trev

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    I am using CP grade Calsium Chloride CaCl2.2H20 which I get from a a chemical supplier called KIMIX and it costs R70 for a year supply ( 500gr )

    I use Epson salts to buff my mag

    I use baking soda to buff my kh, but I am going to bake it from now on.

    This way it makes it easier on the pocket

    Trev
     
  11. Jacojs

    Jacojs

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    Tagged
     
  12. Reef Maniac

    Reef Maniac MASA Contributor

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    Using only Epsom salts would cause an imbalance if used long-term - it will cause the sulphate level to rise unacceptably high. I suggest that you use a combination of Epsom salts AND magnesium chloride, as detailed in the links above. You should be able to buy it from the same supplier that you get your CaCl2 from.

    Hennie
     
  13. Trev

    Trev

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    Thanks Hennie I was thinking the same for when my epson salt mix runns out I think its best to use the mag chloride

    Trev
     
  14. Reef Maniac

    Reef Maniac MASA Contributor

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    Actually, it's best to use a combination of both :) as per the links above.

    Hennie
     
  15. ziyaadb

    ziyaadb

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    gents can someone please advise where we can buy the calcium chloride, and magnesium chloride in GP?
     
  16. Singularity

    Singularity Hmmm amper!

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  17. frankie fish

    frankie fish

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    hennie, r there any update on the chalk idea? The last time i tested my ca by ernst's shop,the result was very high,and i only used the chalk 4 calcium
     
  18. clown

    clown

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    Hi :) ,

    Sory for this stupid question, but where do we buy magnesium chloride or is there a nother house hold product we can buy that is magnesium chloride? :whistling:

    thanx in advance :wave2:
     
  19. FransSny

    FransSny

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    Chinese deli / shops...called nigari
     
  20. clown

    clown

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    Thanx. where do we buy it.

    I send you a pm.
     
  21. Reef Maniac

    Reef Maniac MASA Contributor

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    I'm not sure what you mean - updates about what???

    From my side, I have not had the time to even buy chalk sticks, so I have not played with it at all... Probably won't get around to this before the December holidays...

    Hennie
     
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