PDA

View Full Version : You pick the change poll


Aquattro
11-25-2013, 02:52 PM
Ok, I have the day off today and thought I'd make a change to the system. The two items I've read about and wondered if I should care are A. Giving a damn about magnesium or B., moving my carbon to a reactor vs passively sitting in a bag.

SeaHorse_Fanatic
11-25-2013, 03:18 PM
C. Create a poll for Kien.





I think you already picked C.:wink:

Aquattro
11-25-2013, 03:23 PM
C. Create a poll for Kien.





I think you already picked C.:wink:

I didn't want to distract him with his newest hitchhiker problem. He's a busy guy.

Madreefer
11-25-2013, 03:24 PM
Oh goody another poll:lol:

mike31154
11-25-2013, 03:26 PM
D. kick back & admire your tank.
E. Take a long afternoon nap.

Aquattro
11-25-2013, 03:26 PM
Oh goody another poll:lol:

I tried to get some salt in here, but nothing good came to me. It's early, I'm short on coffee.

Aquattro
11-25-2013, 03:26 PM
D. kick back & admire your tank.
E. Take a long afternoon nap.

D is my "secret" to reef keeping, E is just standard practice on a day off :)

thmh
11-25-2013, 03:52 PM
where is the all of the above??? and where is my god damn kien option~!!!!

Aquattro
11-25-2013, 03:55 PM
where is the all of the above??? and where is my god damn kien option~!!!!

Making two changes in the same year is just beyond my ability! Just pick one. I've made note of the lack of keener option, I won't leave that out next poll. Sorry.

Aquattro
11-25-2013, 03:57 PM
So far the results surprise me. With all the talk about Mg, nobody thinks it's important? That works out well, as the carbon thing is much easier -lol

Werbo
11-25-2013, 04:05 PM
What carbon are you using?

Delphinus
11-25-2013, 04:12 PM
Not sure about either one to be honest.

Thoughts on Mg: IME, Mg technically isn't a problem unless it's very low. I do actively dose Mg I suppose you could call it, but I do it via my water changes: I add just enough MgCl and MgSO4 to my new water to bring it up to around 1500. That tends to keep the Mg in the tank at "good enough" levels. So I don't think "worry" about Mg. It's just a routine.

I don't understand the science behind it, but I've noticed that things just look better when Mg is at "good enough" levels (versus "far too low"). The change is most noticeable in anemones (of which I have a handful). Ever since adopting the water change technique however I haven't noticed them looking off due to Mg levels in probably 4-5 years now or more.

Guess the thing to try is seeing if your Mg is low, then dosing it back to seawater type levels, then see if you notice a difference in your tank.

Thoughts on carbon: I used to think that reactors were a better choice for carbon as I thought water passing through the column of carbon would make for better absorption of the baddies because of better contact to more surface area blah blah blah something or other. But seem to have read more than a few credible articles in the last few years that seem to suggest just having a bag in a high flow area in the sump is good enough because osmosis or something blah blah blah the main take away is it still works as carbon.

I made the investment in TLF reactors so I figure I might as well use them for carbon but if I didn't have them already I'm not sure I'd worry about it too much.

Guess the thing to try is move your carbon into a reactor and see if you notice a difference in your tank. :lol:

Aquattro
11-25-2013, 04:12 PM
What carbon are you using?

Not sure, it's black.

Aquattro
11-25-2013, 04:14 PM
Tony, your ideas give me more time off today, meaning longer nap. I should have had a do nothing option :)

Aquattro
11-25-2013, 04:17 PM
Thoughts on Mg: IME, Mg technically isn't a problem unless it's very low.

Let's expand on this. What is "very low" and what would the problem be? Mine is about 1150ppm and I don't really see any problems. Looks like a lot of work to chase a number without understanding the problem.

kien
11-25-2013, 04:34 PM
I should have had a do nothing option :)

I would have voted for this option as well. Whether you called it, "do nothing" or "keener", it's all the same.

Aquattro
11-25-2013, 04:36 PM
I would have voted for this option as well. Whether you called it, "do nothing" or "keener", it's all the same.

oh, hey, glad you could drop by. How's the clove eating mermaid problem going? Hate when those get in the tank!

kien
11-25-2013, 04:40 PM
Let's expand on this. What is "very low" and what would the problem be? Mine is about 1150ppm and I don't really see any problems. Looks like a lot of work to chase a number without understanding the problem.

In my experience, a result of low mag is that it makes it more difficult or challenging to maintain higher alkalinity levels. There's a whole chemistry lesson you can read up on regarding the relationships but what I took away was simply, low mag will bugger up alkalinity. To me low is below 1200 is when things start to get interesting.

Aquattro
11-25-2013, 04:43 PM
To me low is below 1200 is when things start to get interesting.

Hmm. Mine is (being generous) ~1170. I'll test alk, pretty sure I have a kit for that :)

sphelps
11-25-2013, 04:47 PM
Let's expand on this. What is "very low" and what would the problem be? Mine is about 1150ppm and I don't really see any problems. Looks like a lot of work to chase a number without understanding the problem.

IME low mag = unstable Calcium & Alkalinity. Magnesium helps allow for supersaturation of calcium carbonate so the lower the mag the lower saturation level. My understanding is anything under 1200 ppm is low but then again if you're happy with your current Ca and Alk levels then Mag is likely fine at whatever it is even if lower than 1200ppm. However higher mag levels should result in higher efficiency from a Ca reactor and perhaps better growth as well, whether or not this would be noticeable though.... :confused:

Aquattro
11-25-2013, 04:47 PM
Hmm. Mine is (being generous) ~1170. I'll test alk, pretty sure I have a kit for that :)

Alk is 8dKh. Sounds good to me?

Delphinus
11-25-2013, 04:48 PM
I'd consider 1150 to be in the "good enough" levels. I think basically 1000-1100 or above is sort of my own threshold. I think NSW sits around 1300. I haven't seen any adverse effects having it as high as 1400-1500. I haven't tested any higher because it takes a surprising amount of Mg to raise the levels at all so going any higher than that wasn't economical. I would imagine, however, that there is a point where it's too high and could cause problems .. I just haven't empirically tested for the limits.

When I did notice problems with low Mg, I found that Mg was somewhere around 600-700 and it was due to the salt I was using at the time. Not sure if I had a bad batch or a bad brand but it was one of those little life lessons where the takeaway was that you should test your incoming salt from time to time. (One more reason I choose to stick with IO these days: it's been the most consistent for readings out of any I've tried, and if the levels aren't exactly optimal, they are at least the same amount not exactly optimal from bucket to bucket and I like consistency more than I like paying more for salt that ends up being less consistent.. Oops I just turned your poll into a salt talk.)

In particular, when Mg starts to dip under 1000, I first notice that the anemones expand during the day less than they normally do. This I've noticed enough times (maybe 5 or 6?) that I'm convinced it's not a coincidence. And the lower the Mg drops from 1000, the smaller they get. Also, they start expanding again when I start raising the Mg in the tank (I never adjust more than 100 per day, just for the sake of keeping changes slow).

It is the strangest thing, I don't know why anemones care about Mg, but I'm convinced they do.

Not sure it counts as empirical evidence to back the claim, but there have been a few times people would ask "hey how come my anemones don't expand like they used to" on here, I'd usually chime and say "check your Mg, couldn't hurt" and I seem to recall most, if not all, came back and confirmed that they had low Mg levels. So I'm totally convinced there's a connection, even if intuitively I can't understand why an anemone cares about Mg.

Delphinus
11-25-2013, 04:52 PM
As far as the relationship from Mg to Ca and Alk .. yeah, there's a bunch of fancy articles you can read but my main take away from all that is "it takes more Ca and Alk dosing to maintain more gooder levels of Ca and Alk when Mg is low."

So raising your Mg a wee bit (because I don't think I'd worry too much about 1150, although if it were my tank I'd bump up the Mg on the next water change) I'd expect that you might need to bump down your Alk and/or Ca dosing by a wee bit. That said, you might not need to because who knows maybe the uptake will increase thus keeping everything stable, except maybe stuff grows a tiny bit faster. (A bit of a stretch but who knows..)

Delphinus
11-25-2013, 04:59 PM
Also from back when I did run a reactor for Ca and Alk, I found that Mg just worked out to where it needed to be.

I've been kind of thinking actually of putting a Ca reactor back online on my tank. When I look back I always had way better SPS growth on tanks with them than without them. I just don't cherish the thought of needing to refill CO2 tanks every few months (which for me was sort of the ultimate push away from a reactor in the first place). I wonder though, if one could just just keep the Ca and Alk dosing and have a small reactor as a kind of supplementary measure and then it's not as big a deal to take the reactor offline for a week to get a tank refilled or whatever.

Aquattro
11-25-2013, 05:01 PM
Also from back when I did run a reactor for Ca and Alk, I found that Mg just worked out to where it needed to be.



I think that this may be the case and I'll just leave well enough alone.

Why were you filling your CO2 so often? I have a 20lb tank and I fill it every 10 months or so. Unless I muck up the gasket, in which case I fill it twice in two days :razz:

michika
11-25-2013, 05:01 PM
Let's expand on this. What is "very low" and what would the problem be? Mine is about 1150ppm and I don't really see any problems. Looks like a lot of work to chase a number without understanding the problem.


I wouldn't use the word problem as much as I would say it could be holding you back in terms of growth. In my tank Mg is directly tied to the speed at which my clams grow new mantles and how quickly I see growth in most of my SPS.

Magnesium helps in the uptake of Calcium and alkalinity (like vitamin D in bones), or at least that's how I've always understood it.

sphelps
11-25-2013, 05:02 PM
Tony if you buy a tank at Oxipro in Calgary they do instant exchange so no waiting. I also have two tanks so ideally always have a back up but I use the CO2 for my keg as well so dual purpose for me.

michika
11-25-2013, 05:04 PM
Tony if you buy a tank at Oxipro in Calgary they do instant exchange so no waiting. I also have two tanks so ideally always have a back up but I use the CO2 for my keg as well so dual purpose for me.

OxyPro for the win. I also do this, but not for kegs.

Aquattro
11-25-2013, 05:05 PM
I wouldn't use the word problem as much as I would say it could be holding you back in terms of growth. In my tank Mg is directly tied to the speed at which my clams grow new mantles and how quickly I see growth in most of my SPS.

Magnesium helps in the uptake of Calcium and alkalinity (like vitamin D in bones), or at least that's how I've always understood it.

That makes sense from what I've seen in other's tanks. But I'm happy holding growth back with SPS. Growing faster isn't always a good thing :)

Delphinus
11-25-2013, 05:09 PM
Why were you filling your CO2 so often? I have a 20lb tank and I fill it every 10 months or so. Unless I muck up the gasket, in which case I fill it twice in two days :razz:

Actually that's about par, it was just an inconvenience to take time off work to go to a place that could refill it (because any such place will only be open when I'm supposed to be at work myself, with the only exception that they open later than when I start, and close earlier than when I finish .... what is UP with that anyhow!!!) and then to have to do it twice (once to drop off, once to pickup).

A tank exchange program would be better.

Ok in the end it wasn't the only reason, I always had issues with the designs of the ones I was using, I also had issues maintaining steady slow flow through those things (would be easier nowadays with peristaltic pumps and controllers so a bit of a moot point perhaps) and plus there was the whole "I want to reduce my CO2 footprint because I *care* blah blah blah".

Like I said I am sort of considering going to back to a reactor. As soon as a few other projects are off the to-do list I was thinking of building myself a new one. Been far too long since I did any acrylic fabrication for this hobby. Might be time to revisit that. :lol:

Delphinus
11-25-2013, 05:12 PM
Oh I totally forgot that the other reason was I wanted to devote my CO2 resources towards my planted FW tank. Although I kind of haven't refilled the tank yet from when it last went empty about 12 months ago.

kien
11-25-2013, 05:24 PM
Alk is 8dKh. Sounds good to me?

If your Alk is fine and you're not finding it difficult then I personally would not worry about mag. I use Alk as my indicator for potential mag issues. My mag as been as low as 1100 and the only thing I noticed when I had it that low as that it was more challenging for me to maintain my Alk higher. It certainly wasn't the end of the world. I have never dosed mag and have only tested for it once in the past 3 years.

Madreefer
11-25-2013, 06:00 PM
Magnesium helps in the uptake of Calcium and alkalinity (like vitamin D in bones), or at least that's how I've always understood it.

I have the same thoughts. Does'nt the growth of coralline algae some how have something to do with Mg?

Aquattro
11-25-2013, 06:48 PM
Does'nt the growth of coralline algae some how have something to do with Mg?

Something I've noticed recently is that I have very little coralline in the DT. However, my frag tank is covered. Same water, so I've been attributing it to light.

Dez
11-25-2013, 07:03 PM
The reading of this thread is more time spent than on my reef haha. I vote just do nothing and nap all day. Mg levels? I think mine were at about 1200 three years ago, but I have no idea now. In terms of Ca and Alk? I have no clue what my levels are at. The only parameter I know/check is my salinity once every three weeks when I do my water change. Just kick back and enjoy your tank (as long as it looks good).

Borderjumper
11-25-2013, 07:28 PM
I vote for doing something nice for the mrs!

screw the tank today, do house cleaning!:mrgreen: then start something yum for dinner.

Aquattro
11-25-2013, 09:50 PM
The reading of this thread is more time spent than on my reef haha. I vote just do nothing and nap all day. Mg levels? I think mine were at about 1200 three years ago, but I have no idea now. In terms of Ca and Alk? I have no clue what my levels are at. The only parameter I know/check is my salinity once every three weeks when I do my water change. Just kick back and enjoy your tank (as long as it looks good).

I like your idea best.

Aquattro
11-25-2013, 09:51 PM
I vote for doing something nice for the mrs!

screw the tank today, do house cleaning!:mrgreen: then start something yum for dinner.

I do not like your idea at all. I do that stuff everyday, today is my day off!! :)

mark
11-25-2013, 10:05 PM
if you picked carbon then you'd be thinking how often to change, how much flow, do the kick back thing

michika
11-25-2013, 10:08 PM
So how was your nap?

Rice Reef
11-25-2013, 10:10 PM
Brad, time to change them lights back to LED!:twised:

Leah
11-25-2013, 11:19 PM
5 pages of garbage..I mean uh...err good poll.

Aquattro
11-25-2013, 11:44 PM
5 pages of garbage..I mean uh...err good poll.

Well no, I'm installing a carbon reactor. "Some" good came from this. I also now understand I don't need to worry about Mg (not that I did before). And Keener dropped in to say hi, that's gotta be worth something!

Aquattro
11-25-2013, 11:45 PM
So how was your nap?

just getting to that now. Thanks for the reminder :)

Borderjumper
11-26-2013, 12:12 AM
I do not like your idea at all. I do that stuff everyday, today is my day off!! :)

Tell C for me that the sauconys are quickly becoming my favorite shoes ever! I'm barely gimping!:mrgreen:

Madreefer
11-26-2013, 12:45 AM
5 pages of garbage..I mean uh...err good poll.

Shall we talk about over the boarder shopping instead:lol:

Aquattro
11-26-2013, 01:06 AM
Shall we talk about over the boarder shopping instead:lol:

Yeah, Leah!!

Doug
11-26-2013, 01:22 AM
Im a carbon free bagger....:lol: Used a reactor once, then when changing, threw it in the garbage and went back to bags.

Jeff is installing two reactors in my new sump however. Guess I will have to put something in them....:lol:

As for mag, I do measure it now, same as ca and alk. I find dosing a pain to keep a constant level, thus my measurements. Once my levels are set with my reactor, only measure on occasion.

Leah
11-26-2013, 02:54 AM
Maybe we need to take a poll...yes?

Aquattro
11-26-2013, 03:08 AM
Maybe we need to take a poll...yes?

What type of salt to buy across the border??

reefwars
11-26-2013, 03:42 AM
Run prayers instead of carbon .......or with ...doesn't matter that's the beauty takes up prac no space in your reactors it's also
cheaper,less maintanance ,Covers a wider range of things,easy to come off of
And Less chance of being tainted than conventional medias :)


Includes mg!!!!!

;)

Borderjumper
11-26-2013, 04:18 AM
What type of salt to buy across the border??
Sifto!!

Aquattro
11-26-2013, 04:21 AM
Run prayers instead of carbon .......or with ...doesn't matter that's the beauty takes up prac no space in your reactors it's also
cheaper,less maintanance ,Covers a wider range of things,easy to come off of
And Less chance of being tainted than conventional medias :)


Includes mg!!!!!

;)

But do you carry it, and do you ship??