View Full Version : Reef Crystal parameters?

01/13/2008, 05:18 PM
Ok so i am having problems getting my levels in line, i was advised to do a massive water change to get things in line. well for the first time i checked my new salt mix water parameters is it possible my levels are correct that i have 3 bad salifert test kits? The test kits are around 6 months old.

My tank levels
Calcium - 300
Alkalinity - 9.0
Magnesium - 970
Ph - 8.25 measured with pinpoint

New water
Calcium 330
Alkalinity - 9.5
Magnesium - 990
PH - 8.11 measured with pinpoint

01/13/2008, 05:47 PM
It's possible you have 3 bad test kits, but unlikely. There have been some issues reported with Reef Crystals lately, but none that I've seen reporting mag that low. First things first, though. What is your salinity and how are you measuring? When you say new water for the results, is this your display tank water after the water change, or the new water before it was added to the tank? How long did you mix / airate the saltwater before adding it in or testing it? Also, what else are you adding to the tank? How much and how often? Do you have a calcium reactor or dose 2 part or kalkwasser?

01/13/2008, 05:52 PM
How was your mixture made up and what were you expecting?

If you mix according to the label you are expected to get a SG of 1.021 and I would expect Calcium and Magnesium levels around what you have. Mix to a higher SG you should get higher levels of Ca and Mg.

01/13/2008, 06:03 PM
You are mixing way too lean IMO.

You can't possibly be mixing at 35 ppt or 1.0264 , with those numbers.

How do you measure s.g. ?

01/13/2008, 06:17 PM
ok i will try to answer all questions

first when i say new water i meant new water in mixing 55 gallon mixing drums, i make water with ro. heat it to 79' circulate with maxi 1200 all the mean while. then add reef crystals, around 24 cups, then adjust accourdingly with water or salt to achive 1.025 measured with refractometer.

as for the other questions i dose b-ionic 2 part and also have a calc reactor.

01/13/2008, 06:33 PM
My guess is your refractometer is off. How do you calibrate it and is the handle blue or black ?

01/13/2008, 07:24 PM
black handle refract. calibrate with solution that came with it.

01/14/2008, 06:14 AM
Billybeau1 My guess is your refractometer is off. How do you calibrate it and is the handle blue or black ?

I thought there was no way possible it could be off, but i just went and checked it and you are absolutely correct. I tested it with distilled and it read 4. so my sg in the tank and make up water is actually 1.021 not 1.025 ouch! I wonder now what changed it? I never dropped it and always keep it in its case after use. This really answers a lot of questions...

Thanks all

01/14/2008, 07:24 AM
Hey jason- Sounds like you found the culprit. That same thing happened to me. FWIW, the solution that comes with it (distilled water) will not provide an accurate calibration either, according to some of the threads I have read. You should get some 53ms solution (American marine- Pinpoint makes it. I picked some up for $6) This will let you calibrate to the salinity you are testing, or very close. 1.0259 I believe.

I did both with mine and found that even after zeroing it out with the distilled, I was not reading correctly with the 53ms solution. When properly calibrated to that, it will not give you a reading of 0 for the distilled.....Strange, I know. But there are people here who know much more than I do who say this is the way to do it.

try searching for reftractometer calibration on this forum.

01/14/2008, 10:20 AM
In this hobby you sure do learn a lot from your mistakes and others input

01/14/2008, 12:01 PM
I have turned off my top off valve and am letting the tank evaporate to bring the salt level up. I also added a cup of salt to a gallon of tank water and i am letting that drip ever so slowwwly. not sure how long it will take to bring sg from 1.021 to 1.026 in 175 gallons by evaporation alone, any ideas? and also how long should i make it take?

01/15/2008, 08:59 AM
Well i found half the culprit anyway. I tested my new water (not tank) last night the levels are still out. I am now positive sg is 1.026

I measured theese twice
Calcium - 365
Alkalinity - 9.7
Magnesium - 1090
Ph - 8.01 measured with pinpoint

I am going to try and take a sample to my lfs on weds to see if they can verify.