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View Full Version : Kalkwasser for 3,000 gallon system?


MrMarth
08/17/2015, 08:04 PM
Does anyone have any input or suggestions on a kalkwasser setup for a 3,000 gallon reef tank?

pH is usually around 8.1-8.15 and I'd like to boost it to 8.2-8.3. I think the low pH is due to excess CO2 from our calcium reactor.
Alkalinity: 225 ppm
Calcium: 450 ppm
Magnesium: 1400 ppm

Thanks!

Bent
08/17/2015, 08:10 PM
Pics of these behemoth?

JaySchulz
08/17/2015, 08:14 PM
You shoulda bought a bigger tank. Your going to have trouble with the lack of water volume.

criticalencore
08/17/2015, 08:54 PM
Tagging along. Be careful with it. I have around 1200g total volume and was having an issue with low alk and figured I could just dump in a 5g bucket of Rodi water with a 1/3 of a bag of ms wages recently and it was a super bad move. I lost several acans and it threw my pH way off. I figured with the amount of water volume I had it wouldn't be an issue but it proved me wrong.... personally I'd say your alk is plenty high enough (well above natural saltwater) and pH is kind of a non issue. It will rise and drop through out the day. Keep your alk consistent and don't sweat the pH at all. I vote don't worry about the ph

slief
08/17/2015, 11:43 PM
While I don't have input on kalk for your system, I will note that I don't consider 8.1-8.15 low pH. I've seen many very successful reefs with pH levels in the upper 7's.

tmz
08/18/2015, 12:06 PM
If you want to dose calcium hydroxide(kalk) for alk and calcium in lieu of some or all of other supplements, it can raise ph without throwing off current alk and calcium levels.

The a liter meter 3 from spectra pure works well for me.
I've used mine for over 7 years or so along with a still reservoir(32 gallon brute can in my case ; it could easily be larger) of kalkwasser. For 650 gallons , I use 20 liters per day which approximates my daily top off.. The liter meter breaks it down to 150 equal increments over 24 hours; it's important to dose small amounts at time to avoid pH spikes ;the 150 increment breakout is more than adequate. The max output per day is about 99 liters ,IIRC. A second or third pump can be added to the unit if more is needed.

There are also other peristaltic pumps that could be used with a multiple position timer .

Personally, I like calcium hydroxide dosing for it's pH raising effect and self purifying attributes.

MrMarth
08/18/2015, 05:43 PM
Pics of these behemoth?

I don't have any handy at the moment and the tank isn't quite "WOW" worthy yet (in my opinion). To be fair, it's not my personal tank. I recently took over the Living Coral exhibit at Ripley's Aquarium of Canada.

Tagging along. Be careful with it. I have around 1200g total volume and was having an issue with low alk and figured I could just dump in a 5g bucket of Rodi water with a 1/3 of a bag of ms wages recently and it was a super bad move. I lost several acans and it threw my pH way off. I figured with the amount of water volume I had it wouldn't be an issue but it proved me wrong.... personally I'd say your alk is plenty high enough (well above natural saltwater) and pH is kind of a non issue. It will rise and drop through out the day. Keep your alk consistent and don't sweat the pH at all. I vote don't worry about the ph

While I don't have input on kalk for your system, I will note that I don't consider 8.1-8.15 low pH. I've seen many very successful reefs with pH levels in the upper 7's.

I'm trying to elevate the Calcium, Magnesium, alkalinity, and pH to maximize growth in the tank for the next 6-12 months. I plan on slowly bringing the values back to "standard" levels once the tank has filled out a little bit. (The tank is only two years old). The elevated pH is a gentle push for the calcium carbonate to form easier, if I understand the chemistry correctly (but also to precipitate as calcite for me to clean, which isn't a huge issue for the time being)

If you want to dose calcium hydroxide(kalk) for alk and calcium in lieu of some or all of other supplements, it can raise ph without throwing off current alk and calcium levels.

The a liter meter 3 from spectra pure works well for me.
I've used mine for over 7 years or so along with a still reservoir(32 gallon brute can in my case ; it could easily be larger) of kalkwasser. For 650 gallons , I use 20 liters per day which approximates my daily top off.. The liter meter breaks it down to 150 equal increments over 24 hours; it's important to dose small amounts at time to avoid pH spikes ;the 150 increment breakout is more than adequate. The max output per day is about 99 liters ,IIRC. A second or third pump can be added to the unit if more is needed.

There are also other peristaltic pumps that could be used with a multiple position timer .

Personally, I like calcium hydroxide dosing for it's pH raising effect and self purifying attributes.

I maintain the Magnesium, Calcium, and alkalinity through supplemental dosing of 7:1 Magnesium Chloride + Magnesium Sulfate, Calcium Chloride, and Sodium Carbonate based on measured parameters a couple times a week. If I can reduce the supplemental dosing and solve my CO2 issue at the same time, I'd like to go with the Kalkwasser. My plan was to add a measured dose to a container each day (to prevent overdosing and hardening at the bottom of the container) and have it hooked up to a peristaltic pump (most likely) to dose it over the whole day.

tmz
08/18/2015, 10:16 PM
Kalkwasser will not give you any magnesium ;any in the powder will precipitate out in the dosing container along with some other impurities at the high kalk pH( about 12.4 at full saturation,ie 2tsps per gallon).

It will give you calcium and carbonate/bicarbonate alkalinity in balanced proportions( 50ppm alk to 20ppm calcium,just like two part or a calcium reactor) The hydroxide uses CO2 to form HCO3/CO3 and increases pH as a result.

So, you need to figure out how much to reduce the two part dosing for calcium and alk you do to maintain alk and calcium at the desired level.

A daily mix is ok but not really necessary with a reliable perstaltic pump and timer combination. I mix abuty 10 days worth at a time ;others do more. The kalkwasser when kept in a still reservoir with a lid not sealed will keep it's strength for a month or so. Without water agitation little CO2 will enter the solution and a thin crusty film(likely calcium carbonate ) will form at the surface helping to seal things up.

Good luck.

MrMarth
08/20/2015, 06:14 PM
The model for our current reactor is a Korallin C10002 Calcium Reactor with Eheim Pump. I realized part of our problem today is how the calcium reactor is plumbed. I'll see if changing that to the "recommended" settings will be an improvement.

However, we ran into some lighting issues this week (controller lost connection to lights, so the timer and intensities did not adjust as they should have and stressed a lot of the coral) so we'll be giving the tank some time to recover before making any drastic changes.