Relationship between alkalinity and calcium

Discussion in 'Water Parameters and Additives' started by Boegie, 12 Jan 2011.

  1. Boegie

    Boegie

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    At the moment I am a bit confused on what method to use to have a balanced alkalinity and calcium reef.

    Reading info like this: Calcium and Alkalinity by Randy Holmes-Farley - Reefkeeping.com makes it complicated.

    At the moment I am dosing calcium weekly. (Cannot remember the brand now, at work.)

    After testing my alkalinity, I found it low, at 6.1
    I wanted it at 8.0 and successfully done this by using the reef calculator and baking soda.

    After testing my calcium, I think it's quite high, 440.

    What method do you use? Is a calcium reactor the best way?

    I want to get my new tank ready for SPS.
     
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  3. Boegie

    Boegie Thread Starter

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    Makeel, I read this post of yours:
    "The best way to raise your Ca, is by dosing Calcium Chloride. To raise your Alk, you dose Bicarb. Once the desired levels are reached, maintain it using kalk (Calcium Hydroxide). Kalkwasser doses Ca and Alk together." on Understanding Alkalinity - Marine Aquariums of South Africa

    Are you still using this system?
     
  4. sweetnsour

    sweetnsour

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    have a read on the bailing method , thats the manual way of doing it and better way of controlling each parameter.

    or alternatively use a carx but you will need to still test lots
     
    Last edited: 12 Jan 2011
  5. SIMS

    SIMS

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    use @makael and it will send him a pm pointing him to the thread
     
    Last edited: 12 Jan 2011
  6. SIMS

    SIMS

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    oops seems to not work
     
  7. keyaam

    keyaam

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    I tagged him for you;)
     
  8. Boegie

    Boegie Thread Starter

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    Thanks Sweetsnour. First time I here about the bailing method. Will google and research it.

    Just googled and the one guy said the bailing method is costly.

    Is carx and a calcium reactor the same thing?

    And do all calcium reactors require co2?

    Researching further, I think the "two part dosing calcium alkalinity" method is the best:

    An Improved Do-it-Yourself Two-Part Calcium and Alkalinity Supplement System by Randy Holmes-Farley - Reefkeeping.com
     
  9. Mekaeel

    Mekaeel Moderator MASA Contributor

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    Hi Boegie! Yes I am still using this method. Works wonders :)

    Thanks Keyaam ;)
     
  10. Boegie

    Boegie Thread Starter

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    Thanks so much Mekaeel. Looks like it's the simplest and easiest method.

    So, to just clarify:

    1, I get my calcium to the desired level by dosing Calcium Chloride.
    2. I get my alkalinity to the desired level by dosing bicarb.
    3. Then I just drip kalkwasser.
    4. Testing now and then to check levels.

    How often do you drip kalkwasser? Continious with top up water?
     
  11. Mekaeel

    Mekaeel Moderator MASA Contributor

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    Hi Boegie! I dont usually drip the kalkwasser. I use the "Slurry Method", which means, mix and dump. Split the dosages, once in the morning and once in the evening. Test your Ca and Alk levels about 6 hours after dosing. :)
     
  12. dallasg

    dallasg Moderator MASA Contributor

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    the easiest for me isusing brightwell calcion and alkalin8.3 powders
    not only does it do calcium, but mag, strontium etc as well
     
  13. Boegie

    Boegie Thread Starter

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    Hi Dallasg, I use Seachem for calcium and it does magnesium and strotium as well.

    But don't you run into problems where the calcium reading goes up to 700?
    After reading this is what I want to avoid:

    ""How high can I raise alkalinity before precipitation starts?"
    or
    "My test kits say the calcium is 700 ppm. That's impossible, right?"
    Worse yet, such misunderstandings can lead some aquarists to give up trying to understand the chemistry taking place in their aquaria when such simplified ideas lead to conclusions that they know are demonstrably false in their own experience."
    On: A Simplified Guide to the Relationship Between Calcium, Alkalinity, Magnesium and pH by Randy Holmes-Farley - Reefkeeping.com
     
  14. dallasg

    dallasg Moderator MASA Contributor

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    the brightwell powders allow you to make small batches to raise it slowly...
    work out calcium consumption per week and per day, then base ur dosage on that, but still test to make sure as sometimes it fluctuates etc
    i have now bought a carx and going to set that up instead
     
  15. sweetnsour

    sweetnsour

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    carx i think is the same price as pailing really if you start dosing dosing pumps, its basically the initial cost that the killer, the running costs on a Carx are very little other than buying test kits.

    personally im a Carx person and have never really liked any manual dosing.

    Boegie 700ppm sound hectic are you sure you dosing the correct amounts and maybe even testing too soon after you have dosed?

    Carx all the way, set it up , dial it in, test and fiddle every now and again.

    only problem here is if you stop testing you never know whats going on.
     
  16. Manic

    Manic Moderator

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    The easiest way to maintain alk, calcium and magnesium in a system with a low bio-load (Calcium dependent stuff like sps and lps) is to use Tropic Marin Bio-Calcium. It contains all three elements and in my 550L tank I only used 1 spoon a day every day.
     
  17. Alan

    Alan Admin MASA Contributor

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    This is one of the best articles i have read on the relationship of ALK and Ca, give it a read esp the marble analogue section.
    CalcAlkMar
     
  18. Boegie

    Boegie Thread Starter

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    Thanks Manic. I checked this product out on the net and it sounds awesome and ideal. Have not seen it at our local LFS.
     
  19. Boegie

    Boegie Thread Starter

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    Thanks Alan. I browsed through this article earlier this week but read it now in more detail. Make sense and going to print it out. To quote from the article, it sounds like kalkwasser would be my best bet for now:

    "Dry Calcium (Calcium hydroxide: AKA “Kalkwasser”): In summation, one of the absolute best supplements to dose calcium in aquaria with a long list of benefits and few disadvantages. Easy to use, but easy to abuse. Follow dosing protocol strictly."

    I used it but its so tedious having to mix, let it stand for water to clear and then to dripp.
     
  20. Alan

    Alan Admin MASA Contributor

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    It can be but if used in a slurry is fairly simple but very easy to over dose. I have 3000L of water in my system and i add 1 tea spoon to about 200ml of RO water (in the morning), stir it up and pour slowly into the display in front of one of my pumps. The display goes slightly milky for awhile and then clears, repeat process in the evening.
     
  21. slless9

    slless9

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    hi, got a problem, got boyu 550 tank, got few fish in there and corals and couple anenomies (tank about 6months old), until 3 weeks ago tank parameters all cool. ive done 2 water chanegs in between to lower KH.

    my ph is stabilising around7.7/7.8, ive been adding buffer, biut goes back down to that

    KH is around 14 (water chanegs partially reduced and now im confused)
    ca is around 400 (bit low, but been adding doses for that....

    i know ph must be around 8.3 and mine was...i thought water change would reduce the kh....

    a low PH should mean by corals and fish are in trouble but they all happy and thriving, no hassles

    so now im confused....any thoughts
     
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