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discchord

Vodka WITH Vinegar in Kalkwasser

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discchord

I've been carbon dosing since day 1 because I cycled with the Red Sea program, but instead of paying out for NoPox I switched to vinegar in my Kalkwasser top-off. This worked great, my nitrates and phosphates were exactly where I wanted them. But my pH was getting worryingly low. The vinegar at 45mL per gallon was overpowering the high pH of the Kalk. So I mixed a new batch of Kalk with half the dosage of vinegar, and now my pH is looking a lot better...

 

BUT now my skimmer is basically spinning around doing nothing. I lowered the carbon too much it seems.

 

I'm going to be keeping a close eye on my Nitrates this week, but I'm trying to plan ahead for how to add more carbon if that becomes necessary. Has anyone used vodka with vinegar in Kalk? Vinegar is the go-to carbon source for Kalkwasser because it helps to bind more calcium hydroxide in the RO/DI water, and it is cheap. I've been unable to find any mention of someone using a combination of the two. The only thing I can find is general rules of thumb, e.g. "vodka contains 8x more carbon than vinegar. " Is that right?

 

If so, can I find the right carbon dose by simply taking my vinegar target (45mL per gallon) and splitting that in half, then calculate vodka as:

(45/2) / 8 = 2.8mL Vodka + 22.5mL Vinegar per Gallon

 

I'd really like to hear from anyone that has experimented with this combo in Kalk before attempting it though. I worry that some part of it might not stay in solution. 

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discchord

Ack! Yeah, I gotta do something. My nitrates jumped from an okay 12 to a menacing 24 in the last few days. I'm definitely going to do a water change tomorrow, but to really keep this under control I need to get my carbon dosing back in line. 

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seabass

It's alright to dose carbon in multiple forms (vodka, vinegar, even sugar).

 

The vinegar is acidic.  So it lowers pH; this allows more Kalkwasser to be dissolved into a set amount of water.  However, Kalkwasser raises pH.

 

It sounds like you have a plan, dose less vinegar to raise pH, and dose more vodka to manage nutrients.

 

I don't like chasing pH, but you are already actively changing it with both vinegar and Kalkwasser.  By reducing the vinegar in the Kalkwasser solution, you will also reduce the alkalinity and calcium that you have been adding to your tank.  Watch your parameters.

 

I might suggest switching to two part solution and carbon dosing with vodka.  And leaving pH alone.

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Clown79

I would be concerned with the carbon dosing because it sounds like it's already creating issues with ph, to correct that will alter alk and ca.

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discchord
14 hours ago, seabass said:

It sounds like you have a plan, dose less vinegar to raise pH, and dose more vodka to manage nutrients.

 

I don't like chasing pH, but you are already actively changing it with both vinegar and Kalkwasser.  By reducing the vinegar in the Kalkwasser solution, you will also reduce the alkalinity and calcium that you have been adding to your tank.  Watch your parameters.

 

I might suggest switching to two part solution and carbon dosing with vodka.  And leaving pH alone.

I'm not trying to chase 8.3, but my pH was dipping below 7.8 so I was getting concerned. It is now resting around 7.9-8.0 so I'm content! No more chasing. ;)

 

Thanks for the input. I will be strongly considering Two-Part if I can't get the Kalk to stabilize things. I really like the other benefits associated with Kalk. While my nitrates have skyrocketed, my phosphates didn't move a bit over 0.15. The Phosphate in my logger are just a solid stable line!

 

I found a big bottle of cheap vodka and added 2.8mL of that so we'll see if that does the trick!

 

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Thrassian Atoll

That's a very high phosphate.

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discchord

No it isn't. That's my target.

 

My goal is: ~15 Nitrate,  ~.15 Phosphate, 9dKH

 

According to Triton the goal is even slightly higher at 0.18 Phosphate.

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Thrassian Atoll

Everything I have seen recommend between .02-.04 for good sps growth and color.  What is Triton?

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discchord

Oh, nah I'm not doing ultra low nutrient after watching Chasing Coral. I don't want my coral on the brink of death just to look pretty. I'm going for mid-nutrient with mid-alk. 

 

The Triton Method is a whole ball of wax that I'm ill-prepared to explain. I'm not following it, but it is worth studying for pointers on non-ULNS SPS.

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Thrassian Atoll
11 minutes ago, discchord said:

Oh, nah I'm not doing ultra low nutrient after watching Chasing Coral. I don't want my coral on the brink of death just to look pretty. I'm going for mid-nutrient with mid-alk. 

 

The Triton Method is a whole ball of wax that I'm ill-prepared to explain. I'm not following it, but it is worth studying for pointers on non-ULNS SPS.

 

Definitely want to see how it goes for you.

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discchord
56 minutes ago, TILTON said:

 

Definitely want to see how it goes for you.

And you will! I'm doing a video log of all of my adventures... and misadventures. I know a lot of people won't show you when they #### up, but I do! You even can see an example of that in my latest video! 

 

 

 

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