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Parker
12-07-2009, 02:08 AM
If you had the opportunity to do it all over again what method would you choose? I'm torn on which method to use. I have a PM Calc reactor set-up that I haven't brought on-line yet, but I'm really intrigued by the 2/3 part dosing methods and the simplicity they offer.

Parker
12-07-2009, 02:11 AM
Whoops, should have put this in the polls section I guess..

Delphinus
12-07-2009, 04:51 AM
I voted 3-part but IMO realistically 2-part and 3-part are the same thing. Big 3 being Ca, Alk and Mg .. you don't really have to dose Mg on a daily basis (or if you do it's some tiny amount compared to the other two). If you dose 2-part with something like Seachem "Reef Builder" and "Reef Advantage" (I forget which one is Ca and which one is Alk but that's what they are together), then you are already dosing Mg anyhow. If you use the Randy Holmes-Farley recipes then you have to dose Mg separately.

I dunno, Ca reactors still have their place but you said it yourself, you can't beat the simplicity of 2-part. (No CO2, no "dialing it in", no fussy regulators, etc.)

whatcaneyedo
12-07-2009, 07:48 AM
For me there was quite a learning curve to get the Ca Reactor all figured out. But now that I've been running one for two years I'm pretty comfortable with them. Occationally I'll turn up the flow a bit after I've done some water testing but basically I dont touch mine for months at a time.

Trigger Man
12-07-2009, 08:18 AM
I think I would do the 2 part dosing, the reactors are great as long as they are dialed in correctly, which means more work in the end.

mark
12-07-2009, 01:40 PM
I voted dosing though have no problems with my reactor and they can be set and forget, but a dosing pumps with a built in controller (like here (http://www.aquariumcomputer.com/System__E_/Products/Dosing_technics/dosing_technics.html)) seems interesting.

Not having run them but can see dosing being about work as a reactor; initially getting dialed-in then refilling the reservoirs. Can you just mix the solutions once (or need to be re-stirred), how often to replace the tubing, life of the motors? CO2 and aragonite easy to get an really not that pricey. Dosing mixes probably not that bad if going to littlesilvermax and making your own, but if getting into the balling methods?

Parker
12-07-2009, 07:23 PM
My main goals are stability and ease of use with cost of operation coming in a distant third. Dosing seems to fit the bill in most cases, however I have read that dosing can be quite labor intensive in tanks above 200 gallons. There are cases of people doing upwards of 1500 ml a day for moderately to highly stocked tanks. At the same time I look at tanks like Snappy's, who is dosing.. soooooo

Right now I'm leaning towards the dosing station as it's easier to get my wee brain around. Anyone want to buy a reactor if I decide to sell it to fund the dosing project?
:lol:

xtreme
12-07-2009, 07:28 PM
I am dosing the DIY 2 part on a 350 gallon SPS dominated system. Currently I only need 100ml of Ca and Alk per day although I think I may have to bump that up a bit the way my corals have been growing.

sphelps
12-07-2009, 07:58 PM
I just setup a dosing system which can dose 4 solutions. I wouldn't say it's the simplest method but I do believe it's the most reliable and accurate. I plan on dosing a DIY two part for calcium and alk and using the other 2 for supplemental stuff like zeovit AA or phyto. I'm not a fan of the bailing salts simply because I personally haven't seen good results from using them and it's way more complicated trying to figure out proper dosing rates.

danny zubot
12-08-2009, 04:39 AM
I voted 3 part but not because of it's simplicity, its just what I have to do. I dose CA, MG and Alk all separately with thier own additives. It took me a while to figure out my depletion rate and safe dosing rate, which was a real pain. I guess after the fact it is simple because I know exactly what and when I need to dose, but getting to that point was a PITA.

Snappy
12-09-2009, 02:32 AM
I voted 3-part but IMO realistically 2-part and 3-part are the same thing. Big 3 being Ca, Alk and Mg .. you don't really have to dose Mg on a daily basis (or if you do it's some tiny amount compared to the other two). If you dose 2-part with something like Seachem "Reef Builder" and "Reef Advantage" (I forget which one is Ca and which one is Alk but that's what they are together), then you are already dosing Mg anyhow. If you use the Randy Holmes-Farley recipes then you have to dose Mg separately.

I dunno, Ca reactors still have their place but you said it yourself, you can't beat the simplicity of 2-part. (No CO2, no "dialing it in", no fussy regulators, etc.)
Mag should be dosed at approximately the same rate per week that alk & ca are dosed per day.
I dose about 1 liter of each ca & alk per day. I use Randy's 2 part recipe which as you mentioned is actually 3 part but it's just called two part. I also use recipe #2 because my ph is high enough already I don't need to turn the baking soda or sodium bicarbonate to "soda ash or sodium carbonate". I quite like it but can't honestly compare since I have never owned a ca reactor.:wink: (I voted 2 part)

Lance
12-09-2009, 02:50 AM
Between the 225g and the 90g, I'm dosing 220ml Ca, 180ml alk and 30ml Mg per day of Randy's 2-part. I use a dosing pump for the bigger tank and dose manually on the 90g. It's quite simple this way and keeps the levels pretty constant at where I want them.

Parker
12-09-2009, 03:24 PM
I'm going to go the dosing route to start and see how things go.

Where are you guys getting your chem from, are you using the DIY material (Arm & Hammer etc) or are you going with a commercial solution?

xtreme
12-09-2009, 04:54 PM
I use the Calcium and magnesium from the chemmaster (http://www.canreef.com/vbulletin/forumdisplay.php?f=67) and arm & hammer for the alkalinity.

mark
12-10-2009, 12:43 AM
I'm going to go the dosing route to start and see how things go.



planning manually or a pump system?

Parker
12-10-2009, 12:56 AM
Pump system,

3ea 5.5 gallon tanks
3ea Aqua Medic SP3000 peristaltic pumps. I've read a lot of people like the Drews pumps from BRS but once they reach a certain level of dosing they tend to run fair amount as they only pump at 1.5 ml/pm, the Aqua Medics run at 50 ml/pm

I'll control the pumps off my Apex controller.

I'm still undecided if I'm going to sell off the reactor though, but if the dosing work out fine I can't see myself using it. There are people with much larger tanks with a lot more coral then I will have doing just fine dosing so I don't see any issues.

mark
01-03-2010, 03:27 AM
got your dosing system going?