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Old 03-11-2005, 11:02 PM   #1
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You know you're a reef geek when...

I just got my refractometer and I LOVE it! It is so cool to have it and for it to be so accurate and easy to use. If you don't already have one I highly recommend it. I just found out that my main was running around 1.026. A bit higher than I planned (since I thought it was around 1.024 based on the hydrometer that I was using).

I bought mine on eBay for 43$ buy it now.
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Old 03-11-2005, 11:03 PM   #2
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Nothing like getting a nice piece of equipment and having it actually do what it's supposed too. Whoo hoo!
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Old 03-13-2005, 05:31 PM   #3
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Congrats. Probably the best puchase you've made since getting the tank. I know mine was
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Old 03-13-2005, 07:35 PM   #4
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what ones are people getting. I was thinking about getting one but seems there are alot of different ones out there....
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Old 03-13-2005, 08:03 PM   #5
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eBay or several other online retailers. They have come down to the $40-$45 range. Just make sure it is ATC (automatic temperature compensation) so that it self adjusts the result to the current ambient temperature.

When I got mine it included a bottle of 30ppt solution for calibration.
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Old 03-13-2005, 08:08 PM   #6
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www.drsfostersmith.com has one, too. It's on backorder now, though, but fairly inexpensive.
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30 gal standard 55 lbs LR, 60 lb live sand, 10 gal sump/refugium. Urchin skimmer, mag7 pump, 3 x 96W PC combination 10,000K/actinic bulb, 2 blue LED moonlights
SG 1.024, temp 79.5, pH 8.4

Livestock I added:

1 skunk cleaner. 12 hermits: red, scarlet, blue. 15 or so assorted snails. Discosomas, Ricordia, Rhodactis mushroom corals, chaetomorpha (sump), 1 feather duster, Montipora digitata, Montipora capricornis, Montipora hispids. assorted zoos, Xenia, Kenya tree coral, green Sinularia, green star polyps, branching hammer coral, bubble coral, Devil's hand leather. Yellow chromis, purple firefish.

Hitchhikers: the usual suspects :crabs, bristles, urchin, mantis shrimp (now in exile in mantis tank)

List of possible/likely newcomers:

Feather duster. PJ cardinal, Bangghai cardinal, Firefish goby, Clownfish, Neon goby, Yellow watchman goby, Orchid dottyback. Various corals.
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Old 03-13-2005, 10:31 PM   #7
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The one I got from eBay was from the seller instrumentsdepot with the title New! ATC Salinity+s.g. Refractometer 4 Aquarium. The seller shipped the item right out the next day. I'm glad I got the ATC model.

I also just got my pH meter. That's worth its weight in gold as well. I got mine from seller thesilvergenie and had the title Hanna pH TESTER, METER Aquarium/Hydroponics/Lab. The seller was great. She was very accomodating, shipped fast and explained the care of the meter (including not dipping it directly into the tank because it could be damaged by any stray current in the tank).

Since I'm treating fish in QT with hypo and want to be able to stay right on top of the pH and SG I felt like I needed fast and easy to use methods of testing these parameters. These certainly fit the bill. I got to watch the ATC in action today as the water I was testing was at room temperature and it took the meter longer to stop changing while it calculated the temperature. Very cool instruments.

Both of these items were relatively inexpensive and worth their weight in gold.
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Old 03-13-2005, 10:42 PM   #8
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I just checked the pH meter you mentioned on eBay. I want to buy it, but it suggests calibrating it before EACH use? Is that really necessary in general with pH meters?

Also, were the other calibration liquids included (the alkaline/acid ?) The directions imply a 2-part calibration procedure to set it up properly.

I don't have a meter yet and would like one eventually, but if I have to calibrate it twice (once?) before each use, well ... I'll wait.

Did I misundertand what I read on the eBay page? (Wouldn't be the first time! )
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30 gal standard 55 lbs LR, 60 lb live sand, 10 gal sump/refugium. Urchin skimmer, mag7 pump, 3 x 96W PC combination 10,000K/actinic bulb, 2 blue LED moonlights
SG 1.024, temp 79.5, pH 8.4

Livestock I added:

1 skunk cleaner. 12 hermits: red, scarlet, blue. 15 or so assorted snails. Discosomas, Ricordia, Rhodactis mushroom corals, chaetomorpha (sump), 1 feather duster, Montipora digitata, Montipora capricornis, Montipora hispids. assorted zoos, Xenia, Kenya tree coral, green Sinularia, green star polyps, branching hammer coral, bubble coral, Devil's hand leather. Yellow chromis, purple firefish.

Hitchhikers: the usual suspects :crabs, bristles, urchin, mantis shrimp (now in exile in mantis tank)

List of possible/likely newcomers:

Feather duster. PJ cardinal, Bangghai cardinal, Firefish goby, Clownfish, Neon goby, Yellow watchman goby, Orchid dottyback. Various corals.
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Old 03-13-2005, 10:59 PM   #9
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The instructions said that I just had to calibrate it before the first use. It only included one solution for the calibration. The 2 part calibration would be if you needed either low end (4) or high end (10) pH testing. For mid-range testing you just need to do the initial calibration (7.01). Those additional liquids were not included (but also not necessary for our purposes).

I think you need to re-calibrate it every time it "dries out" (goes unused for any length of time) but there's a wetting solution that they sell that you can keep in the cap with the electrode.

It is *very* easy to use. Take a cup of water out of the tank, put electrode in, wait for the ATC to finish, read digital read out. I highly recommend it.
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Old 03-13-2005, 11:12 PM   #10
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OK, now I feel much better. I think I'll order one, too. Thanks VERY much for the additional info. I'm at the point now where I have to spend wisely (and less often ) until my bank account recovers somewhat.

I was VERY happy to read your first post about the inexpensive meter, and then somewhat nervous after going to eBay and reading the info there.

I'll order mine tomorrow. Thanks again.
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30 gal standard 55 lbs LR, 60 lb live sand, 10 gal sump/refugium. Urchin skimmer, mag7 pump, 3 x 96W PC combination 10,000K/actinic bulb, 2 blue LED moonlights
SG 1.024, temp 79.5, pH 8.4

Livestock I added:

1 skunk cleaner. 12 hermits: red, scarlet, blue. 15 or so assorted snails. Discosomas, Ricordia, Rhodactis mushroom corals, chaetomorpha (sump), 1 feather duster, Montipora digitata, Montipora capricornis, Montipora hispids. assorted zoos, Xenia, Kenya tree coral, green Sinularia, green star polyps, branching hammer coral, bubble coral, Devil's hand leather. Yellow chromis, purple firefish.

Hitchhikers: the usual suspects :crabs, bristles, urchin, mantis shrimp (now in exile in mantis tank)

List of possible/likely newcomers:

Feather duster. PJ cardinal, Bangghai cardinal, Firefish goby, Clownfish, Neon goby, Yellow watchman goby, Orchid dottyback. Various corals.
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