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Old 09-01-2003, 10:28 PM   #11
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Red Sea Salt would not be my first or last. I used it once when I started, and I will never use it again. I will have to say though, if testing is getting to be a pita, believe me, you are going to be doing a lot of it in the near future, if you want to know what is going on in your system. I am with RR when he says to test the freshly mixed water. This will tell you where you have to adjust, to get the parameters where you want them... I like him, have to add things to the new water to get the exact match or close to it, to the water I am replacing. This involves testing. I use 2 part mixture to get it to the params I like, and then dose Kalk to replace evap. This maintans the Cal and Alk for me. But again, all due to testing and understanding what I am looking for. HTH
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Old 09-01-2003, 10:29 PM   #12
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Sorry...you are right...I overreacted and overlooked the subtlety.

Thanks for the advice, as always.
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Old 09-01-2003, 11:34 PM   #13
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I mean this in the kindest possible manner...it does not seem that you like the suggestions put forth to you. Two of the very most important aspects of this hobby are frequent water testing and water changes. You dont seem to like either. The first, water testing, could eliminate the need for a water change at this time, yet you do not wish to pursue that avenue any more. The only other thing that could possibly be recommended without knowing your water parameters is a few water change with a quality salt. To be honest with you, I know quite a few people with reef tanks now and none of them use red sea salt. Also, none of the stores near here even carry it. You could test your water source, but that is the first thing that you told us you didnt want to do.....you are making it difficult to help you.

Also, if you are going to be adding ANY chemicals to your tank, you need to be testing. If you are not willing to do that, you are playing russian roulette with your tank and its inhabitants.
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Old 09-02-2003, 12:05 AM   #14
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I appreciate your thoughts, consideration, and your experience and dedication. And, yes, I guess Im sort of difficult about some of this...maybe impatient. But, having worked myself for a long time in an entirely different but also very technical area, I do think a great challenge is to try to simplify things for the particular user and situation. Everyone strikes a different balance. I know people who have had all sorts of long term marine fishkeeping and reefkeeping experience, with evidently a lot of success, who have done even less testing and water changing and inquiry than me...by far, in fact.

I do water changes, but not every week and not 20%+. I do tests, at least a half dozen, but I don't do 20 tests every couple of days. Yes, I have used some additives without having first tested, but I haven't used what I imagine is an excessive amount (just compared to the dozens of categories available), and I tried to keep the additives modest. Now that Ive done more testing, I will try to harmonize the additives with the tests.

Anyway, here is what no less an authority than Bob Fenner has said about salt mixes:

"I take exception with most authors on the virtues of one salt mix over any particular other, and the special treatment (reverse osmosis, deionization, distillation) of the freshwater to make it up."

"As stated previously, all commercial synthetic mixes are composed of about the same proportions of the major elements of natural seawater (see Table 1 & 2); chloride, sodium, sulfate, magnesium, calcium, potassium, and bicarbonate."

These quotes are from his columns on wetwebmedia.

Also, while I don't doubt your experience and that of those you know in your geographic area, I was told by reputable people in my area that red sea salt was an excellent choice. Maybe they're wrong, but I didn't approach it with cost savings or any other agenda in mind. That was the advice I received.

I do appreciate the feedback, and recognize that I may sound negative. I am just trying to find a way to enjoy the hobby, learn, and do well with the livestock.
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Old 09-03-2003, 03:20 AM   #15
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personally, i find all of the testing and all of the research and advice part of the enjoyment. and you cant just not like someones opinion just because you have been told otherwise by people that you know. the best thing that you can do is just try another salt brand for a little while, if you think that it isnt as good as the red sea tha you have been using or dont see anything different about it at all, then go back to it. nobody is telling anyone what they should or shouldnt do, they are all just suggestions, you asked, they answered. i agree with you that nobody what someone says there are people that oppose it and can say differently, but your best way of finding out for yourself is trying. no one here ever wants to get into a fight, they are just tryiing to help. and btw, if you want to do well with the livestock, you have to test like it or not. how would you like it if you were sick and a doctor just didnt want to test you anymore because he didnt feel like it.
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Old 09-03-2003, 10:21 AM   #16
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As I said in my prior post, I do testing. I test for salinity, ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, PH, calcium and alkalinity. Does that sound like I reject testing? There are countless tests one can do, but it's hardly fair to make it sound like I am simply rejecting testing, or rejecting water changes, or rejecting experimenting, or not putting the time in as part of the hobby, the learning and, yes, the enjoyment.

Please...give me a fair shake on this...all Im trying to do is strike a balance in terms of how much of those things is right for me and for the livestock.

Mike Paletta's book, The New Marine Aquarium, is premised on the recognition that the advances from the use of live rock, live sand, quality salt mixes, filtration equipment and other improvements, have made today's saltwater hobby far simpler than in the past. With all that, and assuming one sticks to relatively hardy, easier livestock (both fish and corals), which I have, he suggests a regimen that is very much akin to what I do. On testing, he lists a handful that he considers important (all of which I do), and rather dismisses most of the others as, at best, for more advanced or sophisticated situations...and, like some other experts, he recognizes that many test results for trace elements are rather unreliable in any case.

While I recognize that my perspective may be somewhat different from some of the longer-time participants on this site, and I may appear somewhat impatient, I must say, respectfully, that I am getting the feeling that diverse viewpoints are not particularly welcome...and that I am getting an undeserving bad rap.

Geez...does this forum consider Paletta to be some sort of betrayer or huckster? And Fenner, too?

Maybe this forum should be called The Old Marine Aquarium!
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Old 09-03-2003, 05:08 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by reefrunner
What is the Mg?
What salt mix are you using?

I would first suggest testing the levels on some newly mixed SW and see if that isn't your problems. If the water tests right...I would then recommend a series of 20%-30% water changes 2 per week for a couple of weeks.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 105man
I don't know what the magnesium is...please, I can't do any more tests...just give me a practical tip...I can't just keep testing and testing and getting more confused and frustrated.
Quote:
Originally Posted by reefrunner
Ok, you need to do a couple more tests. Test the new water if the CA and ALK are in balance...start doing some water changes. If not, post back and we will take it from there.
Quote:
Originally Posted by 105man
Reefrunner,

Thanks, but I can't keep doing more tests...they're driving me crazy
Quote:
Originally Posted by reefrunner
If your not going to test, your only responsible alternative
Quote:
Originally Posted by 105man
thanks...I do use what I understand is a high quality Red Sea sal
OK, no where in here did you indicate that you are going to continue to test, you stated you couldn't do anymore tests. I wanted you to do 3 tests, two of which you already do, 1 you don't but should. I'm sure even Fenner and Paletta recognize the importance of Mg levels in maintaining a proper balance between CA and ALK. In your situation...the first thing that comes to mind is your Mg is low and you are not able to keep CA in solution. You don't want to test Mg...OK...I ask you to test the levels on the make up water for your water changes. If they are very high in ALK and average to low in CA, then that is the problem and that's what we need to fix. If you were to post the same stuff to Fenner and Paletta, I can guarantee you, they are going to ask you similar questions, and want to know additional test results.
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Old 09-03-2003, 11:10 PM   #18
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Reef Tank Test Kit Recommendations Chart
____________________________________
Compiled by Debbie and Stan Hauter
Test
LR=Low Range
pH
Alkalinity
LR Ammonia
(NH≥
NH≥+4)
Nitrite
(NO≤)
LR Nitrate
(NO≥-)
Calcium
(Ca)
Carbonate
Hardness
(KH)
Phosphate
PO4
Dissolved
Oxygen
(O≤)
Specific
Gravity
(Salinity)
Temperature
Other Optional
Reef Tank
Tests -Iodine/Iodide
-Strontium
-Silicate
-Iron


Reefrunner,

You may be right about the importance of magnesium, but if so, then these widely published and seemingly highly regarded marine aquarists must have overlooked it!

I hope you'll forgive my sarcasm, but I do feel I am being ganged up on here and depicted as some sort of heretic. I think if you go back over the thread, you will see that what I have said has been taken out of context and met with unfair criticism.

All I asked for was a recommendation without need for further testing or colossal water changes or other experiments. Granted, it may not be the ideal approach from everyone's perspective, but in context I think it is both reasonable and thoughtful.
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Old 09-03-2003, 11:31 PM   #19
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Quote:
All I asked for was a recommendation without need for further testing or colossal water changes or other experiments.
What you asked for was why your alkalinity was high, I attempted to answer that question, when you refused to do further testing to help me, I tried to offer a safe solution, large water changes (hopefully large enough to keep up with your CA and ALK demands) on a weekly basis.

Quote:
widely published and seemingly highly regarded marine aquarists must have overlooked it
Dude!! If posting some links and finding articles for about.com meets those requirements, my 4640 posts here must count for some serious publishing, not to mention the thousands of posts I have on other boards, and generally, I "think" (could be wrong here) I am well respected/regarded. I am certain that Randy Holmes farley and Craig Bingman fit those catagories, and they both agree Mg, is a key factor in maintaining balance of CA and ALK. Is it an absolute necessity?? Only when your experiencing high ALK and Low CA problems, hmmmm.

Quote:
but I do feel I am being ganged up on here and depicted as some sort of heretic.
I noticed the same thing, I was done with the thread until you made this statement... "Maybe this forum should be called The Old Marine Aquarium!" I'm not much of a sport when you start insulting my forum.
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Old 09-04-2003, 11:19 AM   #20
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fair enough...I appreciate your dedication and well earned sense of pride, as well as your careful, disciplined approach to responding to my inquiry.
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