Mark my Chemistry Homework

Discussion in 'Water Parameters and Additives' started by Ross, 2 Jul 2010.

  1. Ross

    Ross

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    Hi Guys, still trying to get my head around this water Chemistry.
    Some Background, I have a Calcium Reactor and a Kalk Reactor.
    (Kalk is on Top Up)

    My readings are:
    pH 8.1 (Will be low because of the Calcium Reactor)
    KH 9 to 10dKH
    Ca 517
    pH in CaCO3/C02 Reactor is 6.7

    I don't think the readings are to bad as I have only just started putting coral in the tank and the frags are tiny but I am suffering from Calcification on my equipment.
    From what I understand I will need to add ALK(KH) to get the Ca down.
    To do so I need to add something like baking soda (for a 50gal, 16grams will raise by about 1meq/L) A teaspoon will be about 1.7 dKh.

    I have also been setting the Calcium reactor. I have turned the pH in it up over the last two weeks from 6.5 to 6.8. (ProfiLux controller) I understand that a higher pH in the reactor causes less Calcium coming out of it.

    Ok my brain hurts, hope that makes sense.... am I on the right track or about to cause a tank to explode
     
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  3. scubaninja

    scubaninja

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    I thought from reading a thread or two here, was you should run your pH in your reactor at 6.5, or you media ends up turning to mush. As far as i understand it, increasing your drip rate out of your reactor into the tank will mean more Alk coming out, less ca. Which makes sense when you think of the higher flow through the reactor changing pH more?

    I would think to stop the Carx dosing temporarily and let the top up kalk sort it out. Let the Ca in the tank get used up pulling your Ca down(you wont be dosing enough Ca daily to keep up) and using the bicarb to slowly raise alk?
     
  4. Ross

    Ross Thread Starter

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    From what I have been told, you can run the pH up to 7.5 in the reactor and because I am running it on a ProfiLux, I do not have to worry about flow rates. I have the the flow so the media just moves and the output water is just a fine trickle. C02 bubbles are also not vital and I have mine at about 2 per second. No matter what flows out of the reactor, it will always be the same. I can see the point here though about maybe adding it to quickly but I have been told to make sure I have good water flow through the reactor so I don't get water sitting in the reactor for to long..

    Mmmm never thought of that. Would it be ok to just stop the dosing? Would it not be to much of a shock to the tank.
     
  5. scubaninja

    scubaninja

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    No, you misunderstand me. The pH in the tank will be different to inside to the reactor, and so the water going in is affecting the pH in the reactor as well as the media being dissolved is affecting your pH. The co2 is there to lower the pH. So yes the pH will be the same because of your controller, but the pH is always being 'attacked' by the smaller changes i mentioned. A higher flow through the reactor means the media dissolves more meaning more co2 has to be added to lower the pH back to your setting. This results in more alk coming out of your reactor, and less Ca. This is just my understanding from that thread i viewed, so i could be wrong, my word is not law. Yet :p

    i think if you are clever about it you could stop dosing(from the carx) for a sufficient time as to not do any harm and achieve your results, of you could do a WC deficient in Ca, and adjust the alk with bicarb. The thing i dont like about a calcium reactor is having to add kalk aswell, because now you have two sources of Ca for one source of Alk. So you need to fiddle a bit. I am not sure however the harm that will come to water inside the reactor while its still. So i dont know. Time for a guru who has done this before to step in
     
  6. Mekaeel

    Mekaeel Moderator MASA Contributor

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    Yo Ross!
    Turn your bubble counter as well as the outlet down a bit and then test your Ca and Alk after a day or two. Make the necessary adjustments from there. Do not switch of the reactor completely and dose manually. Also dont worry about the low ph. ;)
     
  7. Mekaeel

    Mekaeel Moderator MASA Contributor

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    Oh yes, the method I mentioned, will drop both Ca and Alk.
     
  8. Ross

    Ross Thread Starter

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    Good stuff, so I do need to tune the reactor... sweet know what I am doing when I get home.
     
  9. Mekaeel

    Mekaeel Moderator MASA Contributor

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    Yebo!
    These reactors are a PITA at first, but when they are running, it is smooth sailing. :)
     
  10. Reef Maniac

    Reef Maniac MASA Contributor

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  11. sweetnsour

    sweetnsour

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    Ross what size media are you running in the reactor? and how stocked is your tank?

    (sorry i havent been doing alot of reading)

    from my experiences the course media only dissolves at a much lower PH , currently mine is set to 4.8 and the solid media is still great.

    my readings are:

    alk = 8 - 8.5
    Ca = 470 and it stays that way.
     
  12. sweetnsour

    sweetnsour

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    oh and when i set my ph higher in the reactor the ALK when up hectically to like 12-14
     
  13. Reef Maniac

    Reef Maniac MASA Contributor

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    That is very peculiar... Calcium carbonate (the reactor medium) becomes more soluble at a LOWER pH, and the alkalinity should have decreased if the reactor pH went up, because then the media would have been less soluble...

    Hennie
     
  14. Ross

    Ross Thread Starter

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    The media is about 2mm.
    Not much stock at all, still taking it slow. 4 very small frags and a smallish Chalice.
     
  15. Ross

    Ross Thread Starter

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  16. Mekaeel

    Mekaeel Moderator MASA Contributor

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    Now those are the parameters you are looking for :thumbup:
     
  17. Adee

    Adee

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    Ross, have u worked out the amount of alk and Ca u lose in 24 hours?

    U may be dosing more than you system needs, reading will steadily climb if u system is not chewing up what you are adding in. With low stock levels your kalk reactor alone should suffice your systems needs.
     
  18. Ross

    Ross Thread Starter

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    yeah I am sure the system is not using much at all. When I say my frags are small, I mean like 1 to 1.5 cm......

    I do however want as much coralline as I can get on the back pane.

    Not sure I would trust shutting down the Calc Reactor.
     
  19. Adee

    Adee

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    coralline will come as the tank matures....then it you will wish you never had it.

    test your water every second day...if you notice you alk and ca climbing, you gonna have to cut back.
     
  20. sweetnsour

    sweetnsour

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    sorry dude my greatest appologies, i made a boo boo , the Ph in my reactor is @ 6.4 not 4.8
     
  21. sweetnsour

    sweetnsour

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    ahh its the fine media then. i agree with Adee there Kalk should be fine till your stocking get much more.
     
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