View Full Version : issue with salt order
04/06/2006, 05:57 PM
Hi guys, so apparently I was too quick to to dismiss whoever had heard some complaints about Kent salt (and I'm really sorry for it). It appears that Kent salt has been bought by another company and is of a lesser quality than it used to be. SOOO I think maybe we ought to consider switching salts.
I thought we could debate about which salt we like in this thread (knowing that not everyone is going to be happy with our choice...it's just a total given in these situations).
Here's the ones I found that we might consider and the rough estimate of the price we can get them for:
Crystal Sea 150g $20
Oceanic 200g $35
IO 200g $35
Tropic Marin 200g $55
SeaChem Reef Salt (not marine salt) 160g $30.50
I heard that SeaChem was a good salt and this is the Reef Formula and not the Marine formula, so it should be a bit better than the marine formula.
But here's a really old salt comparison for a reference. If anyone has a newer one, please post it here. Keep in mind that the Kent listed in this comparision is not the same Kent we'd be getting if we decided to go with them.
OK let it begin!
I won't be participating, but SeaChem is the closest to NSW there is on the market right now. There were some rumors on some problems early on with the boron levels, but those have been resolved and the details are too extensive to post here. At that price, makes me want to renew my membership, as that is my salt of choice now. Most of the advanced SPS keepers I speak to are going w/ SeaChem or a 50/50 mixture of IO/Oceanic.
04/06/2006, 06:05 PM
Oh great! Thanks for posting Dave. I was actually just about to PM you to ask you to post your thoughts on this issue. Thanks!
Here's some more info on the boron I got from another reefer who got it from the mfgr.:
Boron can contribute to buffering, which is helpful in reducing pH swings. It contributes less to buffering than carbonate, but it helps. Boron also increases the solubility of calcium at a given pH and alkalinity, through ion competition. In other words, a little boron in the tank allows the addition of a little more calcium without precipitation. Aside from the chemistry, boron is a desirable trace element. Reference 13 from Holmes-Farley's article "Boron in a Reef Tank" indicates that some plants, diatoms, and algae have an absolute requirement for it. The tank is a closed system, so it is not unusual to see some boron depletion with time, through calcification and consumption. That is why we add a little more.
I should note that the boron levels quoted in the article on Boron in a Reef Tank for Seachem salt are way too high. Our web site lists a boron content of 16 ppm for Reef Salt solution though it doesn't specify the strength of the solution. Recently I had an outside laboratory do some ICP-atomic emission analytical work for us, and the boron levels for both Marine Salt and Reef Salt were 16 ppm at a concentration of 34.75 grams per liter. This is 3.6 times the level in natural sea water, not the 12 times quoted in the article.
This is me speaking now...Also, note that the potassium level in this salt, believed by some to be a "missing ingredient" that is not well understood for the health and coloration of corals, esp. SPS, is near NSW levels in the Seachem salt. As with any salt, however, when making a transition, I would always recommend a 50/50 mix with your old salt for several water changes before making the complete changeover. HTH.
04/06/2006, 06:34 PM
Great info Dave. Thanks.
Joe used to tell me to go really slow switching salts. So that's what I did when we switched to Kent. I previously had switched around a bunch, using whatever sounded good at the time. I switched without any acclimation at all. I have since heard that that is pretty dangerous and a very BAD idea. So NOW I am fully willing to slowly switch over salts. Anyone else who needs a bit extra Kent so they can acclimate their tank slowly can get it from me or any of the other people who have a bit of salt left.
It is a VERY good idea to acclimate your tank to your new salt. I totally agree with Dave on this one (and on his salt choice as well!).
Oceanic is also good, but there have been some inconsistency issues and you have to buffer because the alkalinity is not so good. Tropic Marin, if you get the Pro grade or whatever its called, is very good but has a price tag to match. Nothing wrong with IO, but wouldn't be my first choice. I'd stay away from Crystal Seas, although some people swear by it (mostly fish only folks, though). Hey, can I rejoin? I kinda miss you guys anyway, as I have no one to swap stories with anymore.
04/06/2006, 07:06 PM
Sure Dave, you know we'd love to have you back! YGPM.
04/06/2006, 07:08 PM
04/06/2006, 07:27 PM
Thanks for the input Dave. I was kind of hoping you'd chime in too, as I know you've been keeping up with salt info. I got a sample of the SeaChem salt at the MACNA conference (50 gallons worth--carried back on the plane!). I used it on my reefs...and all is still well. I didn't test it out or anything, although thinking back, that might have been a good idea :rolleyes: I think it is a good company though from their other products and customer service.
I have heard of fish-only folk using Crystal Seas, but I thought mostly because it is cheap if purchased in bulk. Haven't heard any good reports of use by serious reefers.
I'm using a 50/50 of IO/Oceanic on all the tanks for now, but that's just because that's what I have. I'm open to using any salt really -- IO, Oceanic, SeaChem... Although I'm sure Tropic Marin is a great salt, it's kind of like pearls before swine for most of my tanks if you know what I mean...
So while we're on the subject, I'll just throw it out there--has anyone heard anything about OceanPure salt by TAAM? I did a search and it looks as though a few people are using it. It is pretty affordable from Custom Aquatic (especially with a distributor's account), so I was wondering if it was a good salt.
I've not looked into it much, but did some quick research. From a reputable reefer (Madison):
I've been using it for a while and I used their pro version too. For me it mixed up at 500 calcium, and 9.5 alk and around 1300 or slightly less mag.
I will say that I am not using it anymore because I just had a freshly mixed batch tested on a colorimeter at 30pt (1.021-1.022) and it had a P04 level of .04. For reference, my RO/DI tested at 0.0. I usually mix the salt a little stronger so I feel that the P04 level might even be .05.
That being said, I know plenty of people who have used it for years and love it. But i'm trying to limit any introduction of phosphate that I can so I am again on the search for the perfect salt:D
The salt is made by ViaAqua in China and imported and marketed by TAAM (Seio/Rio mfgr). I don't believe it's more than a $1 or 2 cheaper than other domestically-produced salts.
04/06/2006, 08:06 PM
Great. It sounds like we are getting a good consensus (of admittedly only four people). It's a start!
04/06/2006, 10:43 PM
Plese count me in for 2 buckets of the Seachem Reef if you decide to go that way.
04/07/2006, 05:46 AM
if it's good enough for dave, it has to be good enough for me.
04/07/2006, 06:23 AM
it's now got the 3 dave approval - still in for 2.
Oh, man, so now if people start to have problems attributable to the salt I'm really going to feel lousy :)
04/07/2006, 07:23 AM
The place we want to get it from has switched to using it in their tanks and that is on what I based my initial comment. Plus Matt has heard good things and he is pretty knowledgable too.
So you aren't the only one who recommended it, therefore it won't be entirely your fault...just mostly. hah hah.
04/07/2006, 10:08 AM
I used Seachem with success for quite a while until my LFS switched the salt they carried to Oceanic. I had not heard bad things about either, so it wasn't a big deal to me except for a little jump in price. The only problem I ever had with Seachem was that it took a while to totally desolve. However, if you mix before hand and use a power head to move the water around, you shouldn't need to worry about that at all. That said, I don't think you can count this as a vote for Seachem... I'm an MTRC member and won't be in on the group buy.
04/07/2006, 11:39 AM
I think we are doing the right thing here. To read about the Kent Salt fiasco, and to read how they brag about their salt on the Kent website ****es me off. They mention lesser salts may need Kent Liquid Calcium or Kent magnesium Supplements. Too bad they didn't put some of it in the 3 buckets I bought last time. The whole time I have had my tank set up my Magnesium has been 1050 or less because of the salt mix. I lierally had to add pounds of magnesium crstals to get my levels up. I always wondered why my calcium was 350 until I tested my make up water.
I would like a salt that is high in calcium and magnesium, so when I do a water change the calcium goes up instead of down.
04/07/2006, 01:37 PM
That's funny Mike. My Mg has always been fairly high...like kinda too high. I was testing it here and there a while back (yes, I know everyone is shocked that I tested my water for anything) and it was always high. Reef Builder adds both Ca and Mg and it's super easy to add. I've got some of it if you need it for in the mean time.
04/07/2006, 09:15 PM
An oldie but goodie, Salt (http://advancedaquarist.com/issues/sept2004/feature.htm). Funny, I'm buying an oz of a product rather than Lbs. Support group! Hummm, reminds me of this time when I lived in SD CA in the '70s.
Never mind. :D
I'm lurking not LARPing!
Yep, this post is sponsored by beer.
Eh, it should be pointed out that Dr. Hovanec is the Chief Science Officer for Marineland, AKA IO sea salts.
04/08/2006, 07:35 AM
The is the most recent thing I found. Posted it a week or so ago:
Part 1: http://www.advancedaquarist.com/2005/11/aafeature1
Part 2: http://www.advancedaquarist.com/2005/12/aafeature1
But it doesn't look at Seachem. The test data comes from 1999, too.
I'd still take a bucket of Seachem, though, if everybody thinks it is a good choice.
04/08/2006, 02:28 PM
This hobby can be mysterious. I only tested 2 of 3 salt buckets for mag, and it was low. Water testing can be difficult and is only as good as the test kit and procedure used for testing. I would like to test with another test kit (all my levels) but who has the time or money for redundant testing.
One thing I can say is that if you want to raise Mag it will take a lot more reef builder than you probably have since Mag is the 2nd most abundant element in salt water behind sodium. The real problem is that mag supplements are crystalized (not pure mag) and to go from 1050 ppm to 1350 ppm takes pounds of epson salt or similar supplements. I quit dripping kalk and used the topoff to get my levels up so I don't need the reef builder but thanks for the offer I appreciate it.
04/08/2006, 08:00 PM
I'm working with PA on our order. Issue at the moment is we need 108 buckets for free shipping. Price is $5 off their price which comes to $30.50+shipping AND it's only 160g, not 200. I'm trying to get it (LESS qty) dropped shipped to us vs shipping to them then to us. We're gonna have to establish a deadline for a quantity but that too was asked to PA to see if they face a quantity price break and what it is.
Dave, looking forward to telling stories and having a beer with you every 3rd Sat.
Mike, I don't know what kind of Mg you use but I'm happy I got in on Mutling's bulk buy because 4-5tsp pulled my 300 from 75% to 110% levels. I don't regularly test it but I did about a month ago it was right on and I add 1 tsp to my top off every month OR SO.
Have you considered contacting SeaChem directly since they're based in GA?
04/09/2006, 10:05 PM
Sea Chem will do a direct sale, but they will only ship to a true LFS. I contacted them about this about 6 months ago, and that was the answer I received. I'm in for some Seachem if we got that route.
Two buckets for me; 3 if needed to make the minimum pallet requirement. Who do I pay and when?
04/11/2006, 04:48 PM
OK, so $6/off PA's listed price, we pay shipping (55lb/ea according to PA's site), no special quantity needed. I just calc'd off one of several truckers rates to get a quick idea of the cost and 10 buckets would cost about $165, 20 would be $240. I dont know the freight class for Salt. At class 100 it's $240, at 85 it's $215. It's rare that I come across something under 85 but even if it's $200 it still comes to $10/bucket for shipping. So we are looking at about $40ish per 160g. Not as good of a deal as we've got before!
One point noted is that it's already shipped from GA to Indy and we're paying shipping back to TN. I dont know if Matt might be able to negotiate direct with SeaChem, and possibly their problem was that others asked for it to be delivered to a residense where we have several people with loading docks at work where we could deliver to.
Anyone have any other ideas?
04/11/2006, 07:19 PM
I'm in for 2 buckets of Seachem. I will volunteer the loading dock and one of our delivery trucks to bring the pallet or pallets to a central point in Knoxville where everyone can pick up their order. My shipping and receiving folks on the docks will turn away any freight collect orders unless they have prior approval. Order will have to be paid for in advance including freight for my folks to be allowed to unload.
If we can work a deal to purchase directly from Seachem in Atlanta area, freight would be cheaper.
Whatever happens, you got a dock and a truck if you need 'em.:rollface:
04/11/2006, 07:26 PM
I'll take a bucket.
04/11/2006, 07:38 PM
Let me see what I can do, and I'll let you all know tomorrow or Thursday. I may have a way around the shipping.
04/11/2006, 07:41 PM
Yeah so that's not nearly as good of a deal as we got on the Kent. But I guess if that's the best salt for us, it would probably be worth paying a bit extra. It's only going to hit a few of us hard anyways, so I guess it would be alright.
If we can start to collect money in a couple of weeks rather than, say...right in April when I am hella busy...I could totally coordinate all the money again. I'm fairly used to it at this point, but if someone else wants to do it...that's prefectly fine too. Like I said...I can't start doing something like that til more toward the end of April though (only a couple of weeks). It's insanely complicated as I have found out from previously collecting money for the orders.
A president has the right to delegate. That's what treasurers are for :)
04/11/2006, 08:59 PM
Yeah I know I know. It's totally true. Ok well let me talk to Matt about it since he will likely be buying the most number of buckets anyways, ya know?
04/11/2006, 09:54 PM
Whew, dodged a deligated bullet.
I dont want to give Matt a cookie for not being able to negotiate it on his own with SeaChem ,but if we continue down the PA route I'll cooridinate it all. As a broker, we don't have a dock, so we'll need Art, Graham or someone more local than Shriner to receive them. And we'll need to be concisious about getting them out of the way as quickly as possible...
04/12/2006, 09:01 AM
Yeah I am SURE that Art could probably receive them again. Plus he's located so centrally in town that it's a great spot for it.
For those of you who don't know, Art's work is on Middlebrook Pk at those big gas storage facilities.
04/12/2006, 09:07 PM
thats walking distance from my house
clear your pm box,I got your pm.
04/15/2006, 07:20 PM
I still havent had a chance to look up the freight class but as for trucking the weight break is at 2000lbs. That puts us at 37 buckets ~ if they are truely 55lbs/ea. The next weight break isnt until 5000lbs so we wont reach that. This comes to $8.10/bucket for shipping.
So, considering a 160g bucket will be about $38-$40 after discount + shipping, pls post how many you are still interested in.
I'm in for 2 (I still have 3 1/2 of the old kent).
44.8 lbs. per bucket (Seachem ReefSalt) according to the label on mine.
04/15/2006, 08:03 PM
I am still in for one.
04/15/2006, 08:31 PM
According to Dave's weight confirmation, we have to meet 45 buckets to exceed 2000lbs ($8.10ish per bucket shipping) + $30 for the salt.
I'd still like to see if we can get a direct order to save the shipping from GA to Indy.
04/16/2006, 07:41 AM
Hey Don, on PA it shows the salt cost as 35.49 each, so isn't that 29.49 a piece? Are you thinking plus tax? Even with tax that would still only be 32.22 a piece plus shipping. So maybe $40 total?
Just curious where you got the figure of 35-40 plus shipping.
04/16/2006, 09:51 AM
Seachem will sell direct, but they will ONLY ship to a LFS, not to an individual. I emailed them before and that was the answer I received.
04/16/2006, 02:45 PM
I should have said 38-40 after $6 discount and including shipping.
04/16/2006, 03:32 PM
Ahh ok. That's fine then.
I guess I will take 4 but I could take up to 6 if we need it to make the order.
04/18/2006, 10:44 AM
Just heard from Jay...he's still working on getting us a more exact quote.
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