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Old 07-03-2004, 03:11 AM   #21
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Thanks again to you and Steve and everyone else ... I'll report back with the results of the water testing just for fun. And hopefully I'll have some decent pics by then.
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Old 07-03-2004, 03:16 AM   #22
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Great! Make sure you let us know, and remeber pics are our friends!
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Old 07-03-2004, 03:51 PM   #23
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If you start with live sand and live rock taken from another established tank, why would you have to wait months to stock the tank?
Seeding a new tank from an established tank can have a greater benefit of cycling faster and adding biodiversity but it will not allow it to be stocked any faster than one that has not been seeded in the same fashion. As the tank matures, it stabalizes and reach's as sort of equilibrium. That cannot be done quickly or artificially.

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Steve, where is the magnesium supposed to come from? I believe that only one of the supplements I'm using now has trace amounts of magnesium - is that all it needs?
A major portion of the magnesium will come from the saltmix when you do water changes. How much is consumed will greatly depend on scleractinians and coralline growth. Trace element additions might not keep up based on the coral load you've described. Be absolutely sure though before you dose anything, it is tested first. Can't stress that one enough. It is so easy to poison the tank with eroneous additions. Magnesium should be maintained at NSW levels where possible (1200 ppm or there about) and be in the range of 3x the Ca level. If needed, epsom salts (magnesium sulfate) is a good cheap alternative. Start with 1 tablespoon per 50 gal actual water volume and test to guage if more or less is needed. Be sure Mg is never added near the same time as a buffer compound else they will bond and form carbonate magnesium and precipitate. Always try adding the Mg suppliment several hours after the buffer and before Ca additions.

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I even read an article here on this site in the Articles section called The Berlin Method of Filtration that says: "The Berlin method calls for trace element supplementation as well. Specifically Strontium and Iodide. I personally supplement magnesium as well." I guess that is just one man's opinion ...
Opinions in the hobby are many but I urge you to try to get as much input as possible before making a descision. Base your choices on fact where possible and not "popular thought". That can lead you astray just as easily. Try reading the articles I linked to above and see if they make sense.

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Is there a big test kit that has everything to do all the major tests, or do I just buy an individual test kit for each item I want to test from somewhere like salifert, etc.? Ammonia, Nitrite, Nitrate, PH ... and anything else I am adding like Strontium etc. Is there anything else I should be testing?
As well as the ones pointed out by Revtree, I would also highly recommend Salifert and La Motte.

Cheers
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Old 07-03-2004, 04:04 PM   #24
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Just wait as soon as the addiction overcomes you, you'll be up to at least 2hrs a day. I am not addicted though!! Well I'm NOT!

Yea right, me either.
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Old 07-03-2004, 05:59 PM   #25
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Thanks for all the info. Are the test strips that you just dip in the water any good at all, or should I definitely stay away from those? I know they work ok for my pool for testing chlorine, etc. Not as good as the regular test kit but well enough for a quick test ...
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Old 07-03-2004, 06:15 PM   #26
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You should definitely stick with the proven test kits such as Salifert, Seachem etc. As always I strongly advocate the use of pinpoint meters where appropriate.
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Old 07-03-2004, 07:45 PM   #27
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Pinpoint meters ... never heard of those. Guess I have more research to do. Have any urls?
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Old 07-03-2004, 08:15 PM   #28
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I just meant handheld meters instead of test kits.. like a pH electrode for example.
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Old 07-03-2004, 08:56 PM   #29
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Ah, cool. So you would just dip it in the water and it gives a readout? That's sweet. Do they have others for ammonia, nitrate etc? Can you recommend a good brand?
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Old 07-03-2004, 10:26 PM   #30
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Do they have others for ammonia, nitrate etc? Can you recommend a good brand?
If you've got the extra cash... Chemtester CM-750

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