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Old 12-24-2007, 01:16 PM   #1
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anyone use coralife scientific grade salt??

i found it online on the petsmart website for a really good price a 150 gallon bucket for 31.80 the cheapest price I have found on any salt so I ordered 2 and the shipping was free. I started using instant ocean and then I have been using oceanic now coralife scientific grade. My LFS owner says there is not really a whole lot of difference between salts. I know I have seen many discussions about who's salt is better. I tested for caclium with both the IO and the Oceanic and got around 450 or so. I just was curious if anybody had experience with coralife scientific grade because if it is good salt I will probably stick with it because of the price.

Is there like a consumer guides review to aquarium salts that analyzes the formulas strengths and weaknesses somewhere that anybody knows of.
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Old 12-24-2007, 04:03 PM   #2
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Your LFS owner isn't really telling the truth there. There seem to be big differences in salt, but as to which one is better.... not gonna touch that one. Search the forum here and you'll find tons of discussions about that. There's no "consumer guide" for salts because what is "good" is really subjective. The closest thing is a "study" Eric Borneman did on different salts, but even that has come under fire for not being too scientific. I'll see if I can dig up a link to that study.

One thing though - if you tested 450ppm for IO, then either your testing method was wrong, your test kit was bad, or you used tap water with high Ca content in it to start with. IO should test around 340ppm or so, if I remember right. Oceanic will test around 450ppm or so. I use Reef Crystals, and it comes in around 360ppm.

Some salts will have high Ca, but low alkalinity. Others will have low Ca, but high alkalinity. Some will have low magnesium, others high. It really all depends. As I mentioned in a different thread just a few minutes ago, consistency is really more important. In my opinion, find a salt that you'll be able to buy consistently and learn how to work with it. I use Reef Crystals and would rather have higher Ca content than it gives me. But I've learned how to correct it, and have no issues with my water parameters or stability, so why change? Find something that works for you, and stick with it.
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Old 12-24-2007, 04:19 PM   #3
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Thanks kurt, I think my problem is I can't make up my mind. When I tested the IO I was using tapwater which I am pretty sure has calcium in it. Then I started mixing oceanic. I probably have a mix of many in which I am sure will yield a totally different result. I am not adding a coral for a few months its time I make a decision on salt choice and stick with it.

I understand how calcium benefits the reef aquarium. what I do not understand is how alkalinity and magnesium and the other stuff benefit/affect the reef aquarium. My thinking as of now would be to choose the salt with the highest calcium reading since I don't really understand what the other ingredients accomplish. I would like to not have to correct the levels with additives. You would think that the salt manufacturers would understand where the salt falls short and correct the mix from the production level.

Also I know that temperature affects the SG therefore changing the amount of salt having to be added. Would it be better to keep the tank temp at 78degrees verses 80degrees and that way more salt would need to be added and increasing the levels of calcium etc.. Just a little food for thought.

What are the ideal levels of Calcium/Magnesium/Alkalinity etc... for the reef aquarium
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Old 12-24-2007, 05:43 PM   #4
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Just a few I have

http://www.wetwebmedia.com/ca/volume...mpressions.htm

http://reefkeeping.com/issues/2006-09/eb/index.php

http://www.aquariumadvice.com/viewto...=832664#832664
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Old 12-24-2007, 07:21 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fijiwigi
You would think that the salt manufacturers would understand where the salt falls short and correct the mix from the production level.
It's not that easy. Alkalinity levels influence the amount of Ca that can dissolve in the water. Magnesium levels influence how much Ca can be dissolved. They all interact with each other and play off each other. You normally can't have high Ca and high Alk at the same time... it's a chemistry thing. So you have to take your pick, or find a happy medium. Here's a good article about alk and Ca...

http://www.advancedaquarist.com/issues/nov2002/chem.htm

The links Melosu mentioned are great too.

Quote:
Also I know that temperature affects the SG therefore changing the amount of salt having to be added. Would it be better to keep the tank temp at 78degrees verses 80degrees and that way more salt would need to be added and increasing the levels of calcium etc.. Just a little food for thought.
In theory, that's true. In practice, you wouldn't notice a difference in Ca levels with 2 degrees.

Quote:
What are the ideal levels of Calcium/Magnesium/Alkalinity etc... for the reef aquarium
http://www.peteducation.com/article....articleid=3355
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Old 12-24-2007, 08:29 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fijiwigi
What are the ideal levels of Calcium/Magnesium/Alkalinity etc... for the reef aquarium
http://www.reefkeeping.com/issues/2004-05/rhf/index.php
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Old 12-24-2007, 08:59 PM   #7
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Thanks again Melosu58 and Kurt for all of your help those links answered a lot of my questions. And I know I have been asking a lot of questions lately just want to make sure I fully understand everything so that I am better prepared to be a successfull reefkeeper the knowledge will help with my quest to have a beautifull problem free mini ocean in my diningroom.

Still wondering though if the coralife scientific grade marine salt is lacking in any of the water paramater departments.
I am thinking that reef crystals is the preffered choice from what I have been reading I am sure there is a good reason for that Sticking with RC would be a safe choice to make. What is wierd about that is I think reef crystals is manufactured by the people who make instant ocean which seems to be the least favored salt out there.
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Old 12-24-2007, 09:34 PM   #8
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IMO Oceanic is the best for my tank. It keeps calcium high and keeps other trace elements at good or constant levels. That advice and 2.00 will buy you a cup of coffee. I know there are many different opinions out there but that is mine. BTW We dont mind the questions. Keep them coming.
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Old 12-25-2007, 03:07 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by melosu58
That advice and 2.00 will buy you a cup of coffee.
Not in the Pacific Northwest where we invented the outrageously priced cup of coffee!

Have a great Christmas!
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Old 12-25-2007, 03:59 AM   #10
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yeah nothing like a 5.00 cup of seattle's best starbucks coffee. LOL
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