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Clown79

How much dkh drop warrants dosing?

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Clown79

We all know we should dose to replenish alk and ca from coral consumption.

 

We often suggest only dosing when necessary.

 

How much do you think of a drop will be ok between waterchanges and when is it necessary to dose?

 

Scenario 1. If one has a 1dkh alk drop a week would you dose? Or just do weekly waterchanges?

 

Scenario 2. alk drops 0.5 every 2 days, does that warrant dosing?

 

Scenario 3. Daily drop of more than 0.5 needs dosing. 

 

 

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Nart

Everyone runs their tanks differently with great success.

I personally believe in keeping Alk as humanly stable as you can with either hand dosing or utilizing dosers.

So, say in Scenario 1-3, the Alk is 7.7 any fluctuation day to day is unacceptable for me, therefore I would dose in all 3 scenarios.

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Nano_Addict

I  started a two part dosing regimen about two weeks ago and i'm already seeing the benefits throughout my tank (corals opening more fully). My tank sees about a 0.3 - 0.5 dkH drop per day while using about 10ppm Ca.

 

I was and am performing water changes with Red Sea Coral Pro salt. While this salt has elevated levels of Alk and Ca, I think that without doing daily or very large (5g+) water changes, I wasn't able to keep the levels where they needed to be, thus allowing the levels to slowly creep lower and lower even with weekly water changes.  When I started dosing my levels had dropped to 5.6 dkH and 380 ppm Ca.

 

For the cost, the BRS two part system seems like a home run so far.

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HarryPotter

I don’t know my daily drop or alk level, I just add solution daily via my doser and it seems to be working out 

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Nano_Addict
1 minute ago, HarryPotter said:

I don’t know my daily drop or alk level, I just add solution daily via my doser and it seems to be working out 

How often do you test?  At all?

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HarryPotter
6 minutes ago, Nano_Addict said:

How often do you test?  At all?

 

Salinity monthly with water changes. I’ve been dosing the same amount, 40ml Alk and Ca daily, for around a year and a half. I did a Triton test two months ago (super fancy where you send a water sample to a lab and get like a bazillion results) and everything was pretty much textbook. 

 

I think there is something to be said for being patient and NOT chasing parameters. A stable tank shouldnt use a erratic amount of elements, growth should be steady IMO.

 

Of course, the safest way to make sure your tank is healthy is via testing. The nicest SPS tanks rely on lots of Alk tests. I not recommending you skip it.

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TheBig053

It also depends on what type of coral you want to keep. Obviously SPS, Acros in particular, are much more sensitive to Alk swings than zoas. Since I changed my tank to an SPS dominant set up, I run a doser to keep my Alk stable between 7.8-8.1 depending on what time of the day I am able to test and allowing for +/- margin of error with the test kit. Before setting up the doser I was experiencing a weekly Alk drop of approximately 2.0 dKH. I also test the Alk on my freshly mixed SW to make sure it is within the .3 dKH range to avoid a large swing during weekly water changes. 

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Nano_Addict

 

2 minutes ago, HarryPotter said:

 

Salinity monthly with water changes. I’ve been dosing the same amount, 40ml Alk and Ca daily, for around a year and a half. I did a Triton test two months ago (super fancy where you send a water sample to a lab and get like a bazillion results) and everything was pretty much textbook. 

 

I think there is something to be said for being patient. A stable tank should not use a erratic amount of elements, growth should be steady. 

Based on your tank's thread, I'd say whatever you're doing is working!

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TheBig053

I am much more paranoid than Harry, hah! I test my Alk and Ca every 2-3 days to make sure my tank hasn't increased consumption since i've been adding more SPS over the past 3 months. I also added a clam (thanks @Nart!) about 2-months ago so I want keep a close eye on levels in case that sucker hits a growth spurt and starts sucking everything up. 

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HarryPotter
7 minutes ago, Nano_Addict said:

 

Based on your tank's thread, I'd say whatever you're doing is working!

 

But unusual- I added a bit to the end of my prior post. Markalot, who I envy/idolize, tests daily. I believe teenyreef does too, as well as all of the high end acropora sellers I see online. I take a laid back approach because I’m lazy and am good with a “happy, healthy” tank even if I am not reaching its full potential in terms of growth or coloration. I could theoretically be restricting growth by not increasing the dosing amount. I would check, but my Hanna Alk Meter broke. :( 

 

The newest device on the market is automatic alkalinity monitering+control. Kind of awesome, once the price comes down (and/or we get chinese knockoffs) I will certainly be interested. Right now the technology is new and it starts at like $600-800. 

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Nano_Addict
3 minutes ago, TheBig053 said:

I am much more paranoid than Harry, hah! I test my Alk and Ca every 2-3 days to make sure my tank hasn't increased consumption since i've been adding more SPS over the past 3 months. I also added a clam (thanks @Nart!) about 2-months ago so I want keep a close eye on levels in case that sucker hits a growth spurt and starts sucking everything up. 

As of now, I'm testing A LOT.  I test prior to dosing, and post dosing to make sure I got it right.  However, this is just be being extra paranoid.  Once I feel like I have everything totally dialed in, I'm sure I'll cut back... it does take up quite a bit of time.

 

4 minutes ago, HarryPotter said:

 

But unusual- I added a bit to the end of my prior post. Markalot, who I envy/idolize, tests daily. I believe teenyreef does too, as well as all of the high end acropora sellers I see online. I take a laid back approach because I’m lazy and am good with a “happy, healthy” tank even if I am not reaching its full potential in terms of growth or coloration. I could theoretically be restricting growth by not increasing the dosing amount. I would check, but my Hanna Alk Meter broke. 

 

The newest device on the market is automatic alkalinity monitering+control. Kind of awesome. 

There's definitely something to be said for the, "if it ain't broke, don't fix it" method.  However, Markalot and Teenyreef definitely have some of the most amazing tanks on here. I think for me daily testing certainly provides some peace of mind, but if i'm going to do it long term I absolutely have to invest in the Hanna checkers.

 

Just out of curiosity, what's the device you're referencing? 

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TheBig053

There was a lengthy thread on our local club board about the new alk monitor+controllers a few weeks ago. I can’t remember the exact product name but a few of the “big ballers” (thats what I call the dudes that have 300+ gal systems and grow SPS really well) have them. Let me see if I can dig up the thread. 

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HarryPotter
9 minutes ago, Nano_Addict said:

As of now, I'm testing A LOT.  I test prior to dosing, and post dosing to make sure I got it right.  However, this is just be being extra paranoid.  Once I feel like I have everything totally dialed in, I'm sure I'll cut back... it does take up quite a bit of time.

 

There's definitely something to be said for the, "if it ain't broke, don't fix it" method.  However, Markalot and Teenyreef definitely have some of the most amazing tanks on here. I think for me daily testing certainly provides some peace of mind, but if i'm going to do it long term I absolutely have to invest in the Hanna checkers.

 

Just out of curiosity, what's the device you're referencing? 

 

 

Coming soon: Apex Ca/MG/Alk control. Wil revolutionize the hobby for those who can afford it, I am guessing retail $799 plus ~$30 in monthly reagents. Automated titrations, and then your apex can control the specific doser to bring up the parameter. Craziness. The technology in itself for the titrations is not new- see Hanna Checkers- but the automation (monitoring hourly) is HUUUUUGGGGGEEEEE. 

 

https://www.marinedepot.com/Neptune_Systems_Apex_TRIDENT_(Alk_Cal_Mag)_Monitoring_Device_Multi_Item_Monitors_Controllers_for_Saltwater_Aquariums-Neptune_Systems-NS1960-FITEMOMI-vi.html

 

https://reefbuilders.com/2017/10/11/look-new-neptune-systems-trident/

 

Already released:

 

KH Guardian. $549, monitors Alkalinity. Can be connected to controller to add on automatic alkalinity dosing. 

https://fragtasticreef.com/kh-guardian-alkalinity-monitor-with-aim/?gclid=Cj0KCQjw-uzVBRDkARIsALkZAdn9IQyCcyfz8PnMVKueT8RvOOHfcxlhzEZ3t3GriOivwLxlsSom48MaAtW3EALw_wcB

 

http://www.coralvue.com/kh-guardian-pro

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TheBig053
3 minutes ago, HarryPotter said:

 

 

Coming soon: Apex Ca/MG/Alk control. Wil revolutionize the hobby for those who can afford it, I am guessing retail $799 plus ~$30 in monthly reagents. Automated titrations, and then your apex can control the specific doser to bring up the parameter. Craziness. The technology in itself for the titrations is not new- see Hanna Checkers- but the automation (monitoring hourly) is HUUUUUGGGGGEEEEE. 

 

https://www.marinedepot.com/Neptune_Systems_Apex_TRIDENT_(Alk_Cal_Mag)_Monitoring_Device_Multi_Item_Monitors_Controllers_for_Saltwater_Aquariums-Neptune_Systems-NS1960-FITEMOMI-vi.html

 

https://reefbuilders.com/2017/10/11/look-new-neptune-systems-trident/

 

Already released:

 

KH Guardian. $549, monitors Alkalinity. Can be connected to controller to add on automatic alkalinity dosing. 

https://fragtasticreef.com/kh-guardian-alkalinity-monitor-with-aim/?gclid=Cj0KCQjw-uzVBRDkARIsALkZAdn9IQyCcyfz8PnMVKueT8RvOOHfcxlhzEZ3t3GriOivwLxlsSom48MaAtW3EALw_wcB

 

http://www.coralvue.com/kh-guardian-pro

Well this should be an easy expense to explain to my wife.... :P 

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HarryPotter
Just now, TheBig053 said:

Well this should be an easy expense to explain to my wife.... :P 

 

Yeah, $1600 (one for me and one for you) plus the cost of a "don't divorce me" gift xD 

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TheBig053
3 minutes ago, HarryPotter said:

 

Yeah, $1600 (one for me and one for you) plus the cost of a "don't divorce me" gift xD 

I would think the 20-minutes worth of my company she gets back every other day would be enough to justify this! That's some serious ROI there :) 

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markalot

To give my opinion on the original question, it depends on what you grow.

 

My 40 gallon is manually dosed, constantly runs too low, but inhabitants grow and do well.  If I try and grow an acro in the 40 it will brown and die because it's not stable enough.

 

My 150 with acros is all automated and I try and keep KH as stable as possible via dosing.  I don't know the daily drop because finding out would probably kill all the acros.  :)   

 

 

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HarryPotter
10 minutes ago, markalot said:

To give my opinion on the original question, it depends on what you grow.

 

My 40 gallon is manually dosed, constantly runs too low, but inhabitants grow and do well.  If I try and grow an acro in the 40 it will brown and die because it's not stable enough.

 

My 150 with acros is all automated and I try and keep KH as stable as possible via dosing.  I don't know the daily drop because finding out would probably kill all the acros.  :)   

 

 

 

Markalot, with a tank your size, will you be ordering an Apex Trident once it gets released? (Or once we see that it gets reviewed well).

 

Your daily drop can be calculated (without killing all acros ;) ) pretty easily:  concentration of supplement * volume

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mitten_reef
5 hours ago, Clown79 said:

We all know we should dose to replenish alk and ca from coral consumption.

 

We often suggest only dosing when necessary.

 

How much do you think of a drop will be ok between waterchanges and when is it necessary to dose?

 

Scenario 1. If one has a 1dkh alk drop a week would you dose? Or just do weekly waterchanges?

 

Scenario 2. alk drops 0.5 every 2 days, does that warrant dosing?

 

Scenario 3. Daily drop of more than 0.5 needs dosing. 

 

 

First, one should determine where the dKH they'd prefer their tank to be.  According to LiveAquaria, average level at a coral reef can range from 6-8 dKH.  I wouldn't interpret that as a daily swing, but ranges that corals can live in. 

 

Scenario 1 - I wouldn't worry about dosing IF the waterchange sufficiently brings the dKH back up on a weekly basis

 

Scenario 2 - maybe

 

Scenario 3 - I would definitely start doing more research to understand the dosage/quantities to meet your target level.  I'd think once a day dosing would still be adequate in this scenario. 

 

I guess, 0.5 dKH "swing" would probably be where I determine the dosing frequency, e.g. if I have 0.5 dKH swing daily, I then dose once a day, and if I have 1 dKH, then dose twice, etc. 

 

Keep in mind, if you don't have much growth, the rate of Ca/Alk depletion will slow down.  And for some corals, once the conditions are no longer ideal, they may/could stop growing.  Acros are a little more sensitive and will show sign of stress due to alk fluctuation - that's why most considered acros to be for experienced reefers.

 

 

I support the idea of rock-solid stability, I just don't think there is such a thing in our little box of water.  I wonder if someone could devise a dosing scheme, using the medical drop count system (like those saline bag at the hospital).  Now that, I would think, would be slow dose enough to get as close to rock solid stability. 

 

 

36 minutes ago, HarryPotter said:

I don’t know my daily drop or alk level, I just add solution daily via my doser and it seems to be working out 

^ This is me now - but I add Alk and Ca manual twice a day, morning and late evening.  If I get to more than twice daily dose, I'd likely invest in an automation of some sort.

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gone_PHiSHin

i think the first post hit the nail on the head.   

 

ive learned over the years that alk is one of, if not the most important thing to keep stable, especially in nanos.  

 

my current 10 gal mixed reef absolutely looks it's best when my alk is as stable as i can get it.

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Clown79
1 hour ago, Nano_Addict said:

As of now, I'm testing A LOT.  I test prior to dosing, and post dosing to make sure I got it right.  However, this is just be being extra paranoid.  Once I feel like I have everything totally dialed in, I'm sure I'll cut back... it does take up quite a bit of time.

 

There's definitely something to be said for the, "if it ain't broke, don't fix it" method.  However, Markalot and Teenyreef definitely have some of the most amazing tanks on here. I think for me daily testing certainly provides some peace of mind, but if i'm going to do it long term I absolutely have to invest in the Hanna checkers.

 

Just out of curiosity, what's the device you're referencing? 

He's referencing the Hanna checker and He's not alone.

 

Mine has been nothing but problems. Got it tested (store tested it once) says it's fine. It's a user issue.

 

I find that funny.

Worked perfectly well for 2 mnths then goes to off and on (i mean one accurate test then unable to test at all 5 mins later) that's not a user issue.

If I was the cause, the problem would happen every time.

 

So I was gonna buy all Hanna checker and now I will buy none.

The customer service and warranty process with the company is not good at all.

 

The checker is over priced for a 6mnth warranty, lack of service, and faulty products (there are many out there)

 

I'll stick to my tried and true salifert.

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Clown79

Thanks for all the great opinions.

 

My 25g uses up 0.5 in 2 days. 

 

I got so heavily into testing alk, I was spending a lot of money on testers.

 

Once I determined the use in my tank, I then started testing to ensure pre dose number and post dose.

 

My salt mixes at 7.7

 

My tank is 7.7

 drops in 2 days to 7.2

 

I have been dosing every 2 days 3.9ml of esv and it's spot on.

 

I have lps and some sps (birdsnest, stylo, monti)

 

 

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burtbollinger

I am in scenario 2.  I think careful 2-part doing is worthwhile at that point...

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burtbollinger
2 hours ago, HarryPotter said:

I don’t know my daily drop or alk level, I just add solution daily via my doser and it seems to be working out 

I killed a tank doing this.  I thought everything was dialed in but I ended up spiking the Alk.  Total nightmare...

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HarryPotter
2 minutes ago, burtbollinger said:

I killed a tank doing this.  I thought everything was dialed in but I ended up spiking the Alk.  Total nightmare...

 

If I had a working Hanna Checker I would be monitoring it weekly or so, but mine broke a long time ago. Need to sell frags to fund another.   

 

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