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Old 01-10-2006, 08:11 PM   #1
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Calcium dropping

How fast should my calcium drop?

End of my cycle after water change:
12/29/05
pH 8.0
Ammo 0
Nitrates 30-40
Phos .1
CA 450

Before tomorrow's water change
1/10/06
pH 7.8
Ammo 0
Nitrates 20
Phos .1
CA 250

90g
100lb LR
60lb BR
3-4" Seeded Aragonite sand bed 80lbs

I had very little in the way of cycling, MOST of the LR was well cured, but not under good lighting, so minimal growth. I have 2 Turbo snails to help with the diatoms, and a hitchiker urchin. Could the depleted CA be due to the LR and coraline taking off? Stuff seems to be popping up all over recently, and I have noticed some of the white coral skeles getting some pink on them, so I know my coraline is growing.

This water was tap water, I needed to get a new DI filter for my RO/DI unit that had been in storage. The water that is in my 50g mixing tank is RO/DI and the stats are:

pH 8.0
Ammo 0
Nitrate 0
Phos 0
CA 300

Any ideas?
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Old 01-10-2006, 08:20 PM   #2
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There is nothing in your tank now to use up CA. Are you sure you tested correctly? The only way you could get that much drop is if you did a WC with water that had no CA in it.

Quote:
pH 8.0
Ammo 0
Nitrate 0
Phos 0
CA 300
Are these parameter from the 50 gal mixing container with salt added?
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Old 01-10-2006, 08:25 PM   #3
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Quote:
pH 8.0
Ammo 0
Nitrate 0
Phos 0
CA 300
Are these parameter from the 50 gal mixing container with salt added?[/quote]

This is for my mixing tank, that I use RO/DI. I expected this to be low, and will need to supplement that before changing water. (back to the lfs, yippee!)

When I did the test on 12/29/05, I tested the tank, and tap water for calcium. My Tap water was CA 100, and tank was 450. I read that my local water supply is normally in the range I read, CA 100, so I assumed I tested right. However.. Im no chemist =)

Ill try again, and see if I come up with Ca 250 again.
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Old 01-10-2006, 08:31 PM   #4
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Ok.. I redid my Ca test, and again, its 250.
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Old 01-10-2006, 09:16 PM   #5
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What kind of salt are you using? What salinity are you bringing your water up to?
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Old 01-10-2006, 09:38 PM   #6
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Im using Instant Ocean, by Marinelabs. My mixing tank (Ca300) is 1.023, my tank (Ca 250 before water change) is 1.021.
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Old 01-10-2006, 09:53 PM   #7
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IO is known to be low in CA. I use IO and bring the CA up using turbo CA. Your Ca still seems low even for IO. Are you by chance using a red sea CA test kit? We can work on your CA problem later but for now you should not even worry about your CA levels. If you start to get corals and inverts you need to check it but for now do not waste your time. I would get some turbo CA to bring up your CA when you get to that point.
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Old 01-10-2006, 10:15 PM   #8
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Yes... Red Sea test. Im not really worried about the Ca level really, just the wild swing. I was hoping that nothing is going on behind the scene that I don't know to look for yet.

Thanks for the info about the Instant Ocean mix. I will do some research on the different salts.
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Old 01-11-2006, 11:05 AM   #9
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The reason Brenden asked if you were using Red Sea test is because they can be quite a bit off compared to a more accurate Salifert ca test. I have both test kits and I notice it off by 100+ ppm ca readings with Red Sea. Ca is affected by sg, alk, and other minerals so it could be that you do have the right amount of ca but not enough of the other elements.

As far as the wild swing I find that two color chart and mixing with Red Sea to swing radically also when I first used it. One day 8 drops of part A gave me the pink to orange change and the next only 4 or about what you are experiencing.

I’ve read that Turbo Calcium is an excellent product for increasing ca but requires additional supplements which I don’t have test kits for so I was hesitant to use it.

For now I use C-Balance because it handles the guess work of all the elements for me and so far has worked just fine. I use very little since I’m doing a 10% pwc each week and my ca levels are just about right anyways. (getting ready to be bit by the coral bug)
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Old 01-11-2006, 11:13 AM   #10
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Thanks for that info. When Brenden asked if I used the Red Sea tests, I figured as much. I mean... changing from an orange-ish pink to a pink-ish orange is kind of subjective. I also thought that maybe it would test better, or more accurately if you were using their Red Sea Salt too...
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