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GeorgeMonnatJr
06/06/2012, 03:38 PM
After seeing a thread about vinegar that lead me to Randy Holmes-Farley's "Randy's vinegar dosing limit. I found it! (http://www.reefcentral.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1813810)" thread, I decided to create this thread vice resurrecting or redirecting the others. I have one comment and one question about vinegar and kalkwasser.

Background

I've been using Randy's formula (http://reefkeeping.com/issues/2005-01/rhf/index.php) of "...using three level teaspoons of solid lime per gallon of limewater, and 45 ml of vinegar per gallon of limewater." (Also cited in tmz's excellent "Vodka, vinegar,biopellets and other organic carbon dosing thread. (http://www.reefcentral.com/forums/showpost.php?p=20085351&postcount=47)" thread.) That's been working well for me, especially in regards to keeping my Ca and dKH levels high. Each night I add 3 Tsp of Mrs. Wages Pickling Lime (http://store.mrswagesstore.com/w502-h7425.html) and 1/5 cup (about 45 ml) of 5% distilled white vinegar in RODI water. I use a 1/4 cup cup, so sometimes it approaches 55 ml. I've been doing this for about three months (after ramping up on the vinegar).

Lately with summer temperatures approaching, my evaporation increased allowing me to bolus add 1.5-2 gallons of that kalkwasser into my sump between the skimmer and reverse-lit "refugium" sections. I have a 125 gal DT with a 33 gal sump for about 150 gal of SW (I haven't measured how much of the volume is hogged by the 190 pounds of LR).


Comment

Recently I've noticed that cyano is exploding and my BTAs have been looking unhappy. When I read Randy's vinegar dose limit thread (linked above) where he stated the same issues at about 2 ml/gal, I realized that I've been dosing more than that. On days where I can add 2 gal of kalkwasser, I'm adding 90-100 ml of vinegar or about 2/3 ml/gal. That's less than the 2 ml/gal he mentioned, but I'm already seeing the same negative effects that he stated.


Question

So, I want to add less vinegar. That means I have to add more kalkwasser since I can't dissolve 3 Tsp / gal without the vinegar. My evaporation isn't fast enough to allow that, and my salinity is already lower than I want (been hovering just shy of 1.025 specific gravity or around 51 mS/cm). In the past, I've tried adding the pickling lime and vinegar to newly mixed ASW (both Tropic Marin and Kent Marine). Every time I've done that (3-5 times, I think), I've seen a reduced bump in Ca/dKH/pH. My question is:

Does mixing kalkwasser with newly mixed ASW instead of RODI water change the chemistry such that the kalkwasser is less effective?

Randy Holmes-Farley
06/06/2012, 04:34 PM
Yes, adding kalkwasser to new salt water is a disaster waiting to happen. You'll precipitate calcium carbonate and magnesium hydroxide in it.

I'd reduce or stop the vinegar and start using some two part in addition to normal limewater to make up the difference in alk and calcium potency.

GeorgeMonnatJr
06/06/2012, 05:06 PM
Thank you.

Randy Holmes-Farley
06/07/2012, 04:42 AM
:thumbsup:

Happy Reefing. :)

tmz
06/07/2012, 09:58 AM
FWIW, I do not mix the vinegar or vodka into the kalk. I like to control the dose separately . I've tried mixing and got some cyano probably because the pace of dosing the organic changed and the bacteria in my tank weren't used to that. It's just my prefernce to deal with the organic carbon dosing and kalk dosing separately ; mixing it in works and many like that method
Two part additions( baked or unbaked baking soda and calcium chloride) to make up any shortfall from top off kalk dosing works very well.

GeorgeMonnatJr
06/07/2012, 10:03 AM
FWIW, I do not mix the vinegar or vodka into the kalk. I like to control the dose separately . I've tried mixing and got some cyano probably because the pace of dosing the organic changed and the bacteria in my tank weren't used to that. It's just my prefernce to deal with the organic carbon dosing and kalk dosing separately ; mixing it in works and many like that method
Two part additions( baked or unbaked baking soda and calcium chloride) to make up any shortfall from top off kalk dosing works very well.

Thank you. I've got Randy's recipe for baking baking soda. My wife will probably think I'm crazy (she's always complaining that I need to learn to cook - wait 'til she sees this). :)

GeorgeMonnatJr
06/08/2012, 10:55 PM
Yes, adding kalkwasser to new salt water is a disaster waiting to happen. You'll precipitate calcium carbonate and magnesium hydroxide in it.

I'd reduce or stop the vinegar and start using some two part in addition to normal limewater to make up the difference in alk and calcium potency.

Is it ok to add the baked baking soda in ASW, or is that bad, too? I'm adding pickling lime without the vinegar now and wanted to start 2-part with baked baking soda and calcium chloride (which I still need to acquire), and without enough evaporation I'll need to remove ASW to bolus add more with an already low sg.

terri_ann
06/09/2012, 01:04 AM
Thank you. I've got Randy's recipe for baking baking soda. My wife will probably think I'm crazy (she's always complaining that I need to learn to cook - wait 'til she sees this). :)

Would you post the link to Randy's Baked Baking Soda? Thank You!:)

Randy Holmes-Farley
06/09/2012, 06:49 AM
Artificial salt water already has alkalinity pretty high so I would not generlly add more to it. You'll risk precipitation of calcium carbonate from it.

Would you post the link to Randy's Baked Baking Soda? Thank You!:)

I discuss how to use baking soda or baked baking soda here in making a DIY two part. They can also be used alone for alk boosting.

An Improved Do-it-Yourself Two-Part Calcium and Alkalinity Supplement System
http://reefkeeping.com/issues/2006-02/rhf/index.php

GeorgeMonnatJr
06/09/2012, 10:30 AM
Randy,

Thank you for the continued responses. This morning I woke up to find my favorite (and most expensive) critter, my 2" Maxima Clam that I've been growing for several months, dead. (http://www.reefcentral.com/forums/showthread.php?t=2179257) I can't imagine that the baked baking soda was the cause, but that's the only change in routine or dosing that I can think of. I used 2 1/4 cup baked baking soda in 1 gallon and bolus dripped it into the high flow area of the sump. It raised pH pretty fast so I dripped less than a 1/4 cup (only a few % of the gallon) before stopping it (pH 8.0 -> 8.2 in about 5 minutes). The baking soda shouldn't have killed it, right?

Randy Holmes-Farley
06/09/2012, 12:01 PM
No, baking soda won't hurt a clam.

Many advanced reefers find that clams do not do well long term despite many other creatures in their tank (llike SPS corals) thriving.

I had two for a long time, then one died and the other is fine. No idea why.

tmz
06/09/2012, 12:36 PM
Sorry abut your clam.
I've had good luck with my tridacna maxima. It's about 6inches now grown from 2inches over about 5 years. They can fall to a variety of predators and ailments , pyramidellid snails for example. I keep a Halichoeres chloropterus( green wrasse )in that tank which may help as it feeds on those types of snails. Steady parameters, friendly flow and good lighting all play a role .

GeorgeMonnatJr
06/09/2012, 01:07 PM
Thank you both for all of your comments. I'm still learning and fumbling along, but your posts about chemistry have helped me tremendously.