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Discussion Starter #1
I know you can use baking soda for alk. can i use it straight out of th box mixed in a gal of ro water or do i have to bake it first i have read some on this but if i don't have to bake it it would be better
 

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i think what i read was a 1lb. box in 1 gal of ro water does that sound right . and do you dose the amount like you would the b ionic. i still have th e b ionic part 2 but somehow ran out of the part 1. i know you can use epsom salt for magn. and i was going to try thta dow flake i think its called for the calcium when i run out of the part 2. i would like to go the cheaper route this other stuff is to expencuve for me right now
 

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I need some help I just made some baking soda for alk dosing. right now my alkalinity is 3. I have a 90 gal tank with a rubbermaid ( 33"L X 7"h x 17" w)container underneath for a sump. and inside that i have a smaller plastic container for my fuge. I'm trying to figure out how much to dose. I was doing the B Ionic but ran out of the part 1 and just notice on the part 2 that i should be dosing that 1 ml per 4 gal i think i was doing more than that. I have approx. 100 - 150 lbs of live rock. do i go by water volume or the tank size.
 

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1) baking baking soda does more then just drive out h2o. I changes the baking soda from sodium bicarbonate to sodium carbonate (soda ash). I don't do it and just use baking soda straight.

2) see this online calculator:

Reef Chemistry Calculator

3) assuming you want 3 meg/l to rise to 4meg/l on a 90g tank that calculator says you need to add 28.6 grams, approx 6 tsp, or 1 oz. So a little dab will do ya.

you can use calcium chloride for the calcium. it is used as driveway ice melter and to speed hardening of concrete especially at cold temperatures. a 50 pound bag is like $20-30. You can call around to redimix concrete places and ask for calcium chloride.

IMHO you need to test for calcium, alk, and magnesium. Magnesium can be a real shocker. I and others have found they had to add literally pounds and pounds of magnesium chloride and epsom salts to get magnesium up to reef levels. Especially after a few years of not dosing.

I would suggest you read through this article. It is the type of thing that is complicated to read at first, but once implemented becomes second nature.

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

I get the magnesium chloride from a local industrial chemical supplier. $25 for a 50 pound bag. I gave the stuff away at local frag swaps and club meetings as 50 pounds is enough to last literally for decades.

feel free to keep asking also.

my .02
 

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I noticed in that article you can use just straight epsom salt is that ok or do i have to use the magnesium chloride with it. and what I'm getting from the article you only add the mag. portion when your done the whole gal. of the other 2 parts or can you add it along with adding the others. and is the 0.5ml is that half of the 1ml ( sorry if I' sounding dumb but I'm using the measuring cup that came on the cap of the B-Ionic bottle the lowest on the cap is 2.5 ml so i need to figure out for calc.
 

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I noticed in that article you can use just straight epsom salt is that ok or do i have to use the magnesium chloride with it.
The concern is that with heavy calcium consumption over year of dosing would add too much sulfate using just epsom salts which is magnesium sulfate. That does no happen with magnesium chloride. I did my first one time correction with epsom salts and things seemed fine. But using mag chloride is probably better.
and what I'm getting from the article you only add the mag. portion when your done the whole gal. of the other 2 parts or can you add it along with adding the others.
Yes. Both can be done.
The scheme is relatively simple. After you get 1350, 400, 10dkh you measure alk. With the api test kit each drop is 1 dkh. So you add 10 drops and shake. If blue don't dose. If yellow/green (color change) you dose equal amounts of the calcium and alk solutions. that way you only dose based on the consumption of the tank. Then when when 1 gallon of the calcium alk solutions are used up you dose 300ml of the magnesium solution.

the magnesium solution and the calcium solution cannot be mixed with alk solution. magnesium carbonate or calcium carbonate will precipitate out the solution. This is why there are two (or three) parts.

The magnesium can be in the calcium part however. So the last time I mixed up stuff I added water below the 1g for the calcium chloride the shook the jar. I then added 300ml of the magnesium solution and water to the 1 g mark. It all dissolved. I have not completed using the 1g bottles yet so can not report on how it worked.

and is the 0.5ml is that half of the 1ml
Yes
( sorry if I' sounding dumb
the only dumb question is the one not asked
but I'm using the measuring cup that came on the cap of the B-Ionic bottle the lowest on the cap is 2.5 ml so i need to figure out for calc.
With this method it is best IMHO to weigh out the dry stuff. I bought a digital scale for that purpose. But you can also use a measureing cup as well.

For the gallon jars I use gatorade type jars.

For dosing I use 3 mason jars (like for canning) which have ml measurements on the side.

I would highly recommend you get calcium and magnesium test kits that are sensitive enough to measured 10-20ppm increments. And an alk kit that measure dkh directly. seachem or salifert are good for calcium and magnesium. The api kh kit is fine for alk.


Let me know of all that confused any more :)

Once you start doing it, it is easier to do the describe.


my .02
 
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