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Unread 02/01/2012, 10:26 AM   #1
supervdl
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Tropic Marin Pro Reef Salt - low alkalinity

My batch of salt produces ver low alkalinity of 5.5 dKH. Is it normal?


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Unread 02/01/2012, 03:13 PM   #2
Randy Holmes-Farley
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No, that isn't.

Have you used that same actual kit on other brands?


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Unread 02/01/2012, 03:16 PM   #3
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I used the hannameter for alkalinity and I mixed to buckets of saltwater with it with the same result.


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Unread 02/01/2012, 04:42 PM   #4
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I had several bad batches of tropic Marin and finally gave up on the stuff...

For such an expensive salt I would expect better and more consistent numbers


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Unread 02/01/2012, 05:16 PM   #5
Randy Holmes-Farley
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How much are you mixing at once?

If you meant 5 gallons worth as a bucket then that may be the problem: mixing too little at once.


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Unread 02/01/2012, 05:31 PM   #6
Ron Reefman
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Mixing too little? OK, why would mixing 5g be any different from mixing 10g or 25g? Randy, I trust you on almost everything, so educate me.


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Unread 02/01/2012, 05:34 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Randy Holmes-Farley View Post
How much are you mixing at once?

If you meant 5 gallons worth as a bucket then that may be the problem: mixing too little at once.
I would like to be learned as well, this sounds like super useful info.


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Unread 02/01/2012, 06:24 PM   #8
Randy Holmes-Farley
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The concern is that salt buckets can settle during shipping, with some components rising to the top and others settling to the bottom.

If you mix the whole container, it doesn't matter. But if you just take a little salt off the top (or wherever), you may get some very off readings.


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Unread 02/01/2012, 06:51 PM   #9
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Randy, I recently Was talking to a fellow reefer and he was tellin me that salt buckets are meant to be used all at once?Any truth to this?It sounded pretty logical.


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Unread 02/01/2012, 07:00 PM   #10
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I buy the large bucket with 200 gal salt mix. I usually mix about 30 gal of new saltwater at the time to fill up my 44 gal brute trash can with new saltwater. Is it possible that I just got a bad bucket? Should you mix the salt mix first before you start making new water?


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Unread 02/01/2012, 07:55 PM   #11
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That's why I use ESV. A little more effort mixing, but I never have to worry about salts separating in the bucket


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Unread 02/01/2012, 09:08 PM   #12
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My last two 200g buckets have been barely 7dkh it's messing me up to....

I usually mix up 15-25 gallons at a time


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Unread 02/01/2012, 09:22 PM   #13
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For best results when mixing salt:

1). Mix the contents of the bucket first. I have found the easiest way is to use several old buckets, and mix say 1/4 of the mixture in each bucket, and then put it back together in the original bucket. Repeat if you want to be sure. your salt is now evenly mixed.

2). Get all the RODI water made first, then add at most 1/2 of the needed salt. Wait for it to dissolve, then add the other half. You can do it in 1/3 amounts if you like.

3). Use a good circulation pump, heater, and aerate the water with an air stone.

You should get pretty close to the manufacturers claims this way. With that said though, I too have had a few TM buckets mix low, throughout the entire bucket, using the method described above. Alk in the 5 - 6 range. I stopped using TM pro. I am sure it was probably just a bad batch, and for the most part I had great results with TM Pro. I however did not like the way TM addressed some customers on this forum who complained of low numbers, so I stopped using it.

I too switched to ESV, and it may take a little longer to make, but it mixes exactly the same for me every time. The way ESV splits up the components it avoids precipitation for the most part as long as you follow the directions.


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Unread 02/01/2012, 10:20 PM   #14
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This is good information. I also believe this particular bucket has been sitting for a little while in my basement and this maybe increased the problem. Right now I am thinking about ESV based on your feedback when I run out of my salt mix. Honestly, for expensive saltmix like TM pro I expect a higher standard.


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Unread 02/02/2012, 11:38 AM   #15
Randy Holmes-Farley
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Quote:
Originally Posted by supervdl View Post
I buy the large bucket with 200 gal salt mix. I usually mix about 30 gal of new saltwater at the time to fill up my 44 gal brute trash can with new saltwater. Is it possible that I just got a bad bucket? Should you mix the salt mix first before you start making new water?
I don't, but I make up 88 gallons at a time using 50 gallon bags.

It may be easier to buy smaller containers, like the 200 gallon IO box that comes as 50 gallon bags. Those bags will also be easier to remix before opening, if you want to try that.


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Unread 02/02/2012, 02:12 PM   #16
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Randy, what brand are you using and do you make any adjustments for calcium or alkalinity?


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Unread 02/02/2012, 02:26 PM   #17
Randy Holmes-Farley
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I have used Instant Ocean for more than 15 years. I used to boost it with 70 ppm calcium and 150 ppm magnesium, but I've mostly stopped doing that since they upped the levels.


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Unread 02/02/2012, 02:33 PM   #18
supervdl
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Randy Holmes-Farley View Post
I have used Instant Ocean for more than 15 years. I used to boost it with 70 ppm calcium and 150 ppm magnesium, but I've mostly stopped doing that since they upped the levels.
The cheap regular IO? Guess I try that - saves me money and aggravation.


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Unread 02/02/2012, 02:44 PM   #19
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Quote:
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The cheap regular IO? Guess I try that - saves me money and aggravation.

+1 I'm going the same route too soon, my only concern is I just seen someone say the alk mixes up at 11 with IO and wonder if that will be too high and make my system swing higher rather than lower...... Geez whiz why can't they just make 9 lol.

I know I heard if you dosed two part you could just skip a dose or two until ithe alk falls but I use a calcium reactor and don't want to mess with the settings any more than necessary but I guess I could turn it down for a day or so


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Unread 02/02/2012, 03:14 PM   #20
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I think the reason their numbers are low is because TMP is designed to work with a calcium reactor. I've been using regular TM and no complains.


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Unread 02/02/2012, 05:23 PM   #21
Randy Holmes-Farley
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pete33 View Post
I think the reason their numbers are low is because TMP is designed to work with a calcium reactor. I've been using regular TM and no complains.
How does alkalinity at 7 dKH make this salt any more suited to a tank using a calcium reactor than it is suited to a tank using a two part or limewater?

IMO, that is a meaningless marketing claim.


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Unread 02/02/2012, 06:57 PM   #22
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My interpretation of their statement is they know you plan to supplement it instead of coming in at high levels and having problems but your adding more to high levels already with your calcium reactor and I for one am concerned with using a salt with a high alk level as I only know how to raise it not lower it and I don't want to be adjusting my calcium reactor down each time I do a water change to compensate for high levels.


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Unread 02/03/2012, 04:45 PM   #23
Randy Holmes-Farley
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Yes, that's reasonable, but the same applies to any method that isn't adjusted daily.

Also , a water change actually boosts the alk very little unless it is a big change. Replacing 10% of the water in an 8 dKH tank with 11 dKH water only boosts alk to 8.3 dKH.


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Unread 02/03/2012, 04:54 PM   #24
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I guess I forget we are in the 21st century every time I think about 2part I always think manual dosing it daily... I have yet to own any dosing pumps but I do have an ato I thought that was the best thing since sliced bread a few years ago when I got it. I remember having an 8 foot tank that was good for me manual dumping 3 or so gallons of water in daily, lol back than dosing pumps all cost as much as the hospitals paid for them


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Unread 02/03/2012, 04:58 PM   #25
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I too use to use TMP but was out of work and could not afford it but when I did use it my numbers were very good. Now they have been going up and down like crazy and I am about to pull my hair out.... How I mix my salt in the buckets after it has been sitting around it to roll the bucket around on it's side then I turn it upside down and back up straight I do this several times before making my saltwater. So what brand is ESV. I am currently using Reef Crystals by Instant Ocean and can not keep my number stable. But on the other hand my Finger Leathers have quad-droppled in size since I started using it.


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