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Old 03-31-2017, 05:04 AM
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Default New 73 gallon tank setup

I have decided to run an experiment with my new tank and to see what adding nitrates to the tank will do.

I have a new tank I started last fall. The tank is the 73 gallon reefer from red sea. The tank has been running for about 6 months. I am running a Tunze doc 9410 skimmer. I have 2 giro 230's running for water motion and have a 48" ATI hybrid for lighting. I am using GFO to control my phosphates. And I though all other perimeters are good. I am keeping primarily SPS. I have had reef tanks for more than 20 years so I have a little bit of experience.
I have a low bio load and had to work hard to keep the phosphates down. I do not feed a lot so I was wondering what was going on. I have no algae growth. I have hundreds of Strombus sp. snails that keep any algae growth under control.

I am noticing that my corals are growing well but they do not have great coloration. I have a 40 gallon reef tank that I have had set up for 15 years with a deep sand plenum. When the corals were in this tank they had great colors but once I moved them to the large tank the colors have faded. I am moving the 40 gallon tank downstairs and will make a frag tank out of it.
My nitrates are at 0 on my reefer. I have never had even a slight bit of colour on my test. I am using a Redsea Pro nitrate test kit.

Last week I was talking to Gregzz4 and he told me that my problem with the phosphates are due to my 0 nitrates. If I raise my nitrates my phosphates will drop and my corals will colour up better. Being old school I always thought that the goal of reef tanks was to keep the phosphates and the nitrates at 0.

I have been doing some research and there is a lot of good information on the web in regards to nitrate dosing. Because I have a low bio load and I do not feed much my system is using up the nitrates faster than I am adding them or the fish are producing them. This is not the case with most systems, most systems over feed and have high levels of nitrate, thus the need for nitrate reduction methods.

I have read up on the Redfield ratio. Basically most marine biomass have a C:N:P ratio of 106:16:1. Being an Arborist I understand these ratios and it all makes sense. My Nitrogen Phosphorus ration is way off. Most people suggest just feeding more or adding more fish to raise my nitrates. That would work except that I would also raise my phosphate. When the ratios are off and you have high nitrates and phosphates you get nuisance algae. The great thing about my system is because of the low fish bioload I can raise my nitrates without raising my phosphates.

My goal is to get a nitrate level of around .5 to .8ppm nitrate. There are several products that you can use to raise your nitrates. Amino Acids are nitrate based. But you would have to add a lot of Amino acids to get the nitrates up. I have decided to use KNO3. I still dose amino acids as well.
According to Randy Holmes-Farley "Dissolve 10 grams potassium nitrate in 1 liter of fresh water. That 10 grams contains 6.14 grams of nitrate, so that solution is 6,140 ppm nitrate.

If you add 1 ml of the solution per 2 gallons of tank water volume, that will boost nitrate by 0.8 ppm nitrate.
I have started by adding 5mls of this solution twice a day. I am monitoring my nitrate daily. I do not want to raise my nitrate levels too quickly. From what I have read is the corals respond very quickly to an increase of nitrogen. I would add some pictures of the tank and the corals as they are now but I haven't figured out how to do it.
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Old 03-31-2017, 06:07 AM
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Default DIY ferts calculator

If you want exact measurements for ferts try https://rotalabutterfly.com/nutrient-calculator.php

I have used it for KNO3 for my planted tanks before, works great
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Old 03-31-2017, 09:11 AM
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Sounds weird but there are a lot of threads online about adding tree stump remover to raise nitrates, I've been doing some searching online in other forums and decided to order some from the states. My nitrates were undetectable until I dosed a lot of dirty food and left the skimmer off for a couple days (accidental) so now I am going to try and dose some slowly and raise the nitrates up abit.
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Old 03-31-2017, 05:27 PM
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Default NKO3

If by raise your nitrates your mean add KNO3, it should be very easy to find in BC. Pretty sure its a controlled substance, importing may be difficult/risky
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Old 03-31-2017, 06:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tigweldpro View Post
If by raise your nitrates your mean add KNO3, it should be very easy to find in BC. Pretty sure its a controlled substance, importing may be difficult/risky
Not really since it's already at point Roberts just got to go drive it over. A friend was using the planted stuff to raise nitrates but had negative results it was seachem so I decided not to go that route.
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Old 03-31-2017, 06:22 PM
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I purchased my KNO3 from Patrick at Canadian aquatics he lives in Richmond. Charges $5 a pound. He requires your drivers license and a reason for use. Has to record everyone that buys it.

It is a controlled substance in Canada and you might have problems at the border
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Old 03-31-2017, 09:43 PM
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I have attached a picture of the tank as of March 30. If this works I will attach some pictures of some corals before I began adding nitrates to the tank.
Attachment 15805

Last edited by Frogger; 04-11-2017 at 02:51 AM.
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Old 03-31-2017, 09:53 PM
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Seems to have worked.
The first coral is a Red Planet. Currently the polyps are light pink with almost no green in the body. When it was in my other tank it was dark red with a strong green colour. I have it situated lower in the tank
Attachment 15806
The second coral is a Pearl Berry. Very little blue in the color just seems faded out. There is a Blue Matrix in the back ground it is mostly brown with only a hint of blue. I have them situated mid tank.
Attachment 15808
The third coral is a Needle in the Haystack. Very pale coloration, lower in the tank.
Attachment 15807

Last edited by Frogger; 04-19-2017 at 03:14 AM.
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Old 04-02-2017, 01:36 AM
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I tested my tank today after adding 10ml's of the KNO3 mixture I prepared twice a day for the past 3 days.

SG:1.026
NO3-still 0 not even a tint of pink
PO4-.01ppm
Temp- 80f
Ca-410ppm
Alk dkh-9.7
Mag-1410ppm
K-400ppm
I have been monitoring the tank closely for any signs of stress, algae growth or changes and have seen nothing. I was wondering about the test kit for nitrate so I tested it against a known value (.6ppm) for KNO3 mixed in RO water and the test kit was bang on.

Looks like I have to increase the KNO3 levels as my tank is using it up as fast as I can add it. (good thing). I will double my dosage rate and report back in a few days.

Seeing as I am adding a lot of KNO3 I have been looking for a purer source as I am concerned about what else is in my KNO3. I have found a chemical company in Vancouver area that sells reagent grade 500 grams of for $27. As 500 gram of the stuff would likely be enough to last me several years even at a much higher dose.

My goal is to create an equilibrium within my tank nitrate to phosphate of around 16 to 1. The amount of K in the solution will not even slightly affect the total K in the tank as we are talking about 400ppm as per the nitrate levels of less then 1ppm.
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Old 04-02-2017, 01:47 AM
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Default KNO3

I remember buying 25kg bags of KNO3 for $50 back in my model rocket making days(hydroponics grade)

All these idiots trying to blow up the world have made this stuff hard to find
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