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Old 09-24-2002, 09:15 AM   #11
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I was using the carbonate hardness test, which I was told was the alkalinity test.
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Old 09-24-2002, 09:21 AM   #12
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To convert mg/L to meq/L divide by 50. So your ALK is 2.0 meq/L.
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Old 09-24-2002, 12:25 PM   #13
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Here is a little bit about the different units of ALK.

Quote:
Originally Posted by http://www.advancedaquarist.com/issues/feb2002/chemistry.htm
Units of Alkalinity

The various units used for alkalinity are themselves cause for confusion. The clearest unit, and that used by most scientists is milliequivalents per L (meq/L). For a 1 millimolar solution of bicarbonate, the alkalinity is 1 meq/L. Since carbonate takes up two protons for each molecule of carbonate, it "counts" twice, and a 1 millimolar solution of carbonate has an alkalinity of 2 meq/L.

A unit that is used by many kits and some industries involves representing alkalinity in terms of the amount of calcium carbonate that would need to be dissolved in fresh water to give the same alkalinity. Typically, it is reported as ppm calcium carbonate. Of course, it has nothing to do with calcium, and there may be no carbonate in the water at all. Nevertheless, it is frequently used. Since calcium carbonate weighs 100 grams/mole (100 mg/mmole), then a solution that has an alkalinity of 100 ppm calcium carbonate equivalent contains 100 mg/L calcium carbonate divided by 100 mg/mmole calcium carbonate = 1 mmol/L calcium carbonate equivalent. Since carbonate has 2 equivalents per mole, this 100 ppm of alkalinity is equivalent to 2 meq/L. So to convert an alkalinity expressed as ppm CaCO3 to meq/L, divide by 50.


Finally there is the German term dKH (degrees of carbonate hardness), or just KH (carbonate hardness).Strictly speaking, it is the same as the carbonate alkalinity (AC in equation 8). Unfortunately, it is a very confusing term, as it has nothing to do with hardness. Further, it has been corrupted by the marine aquarium hobby to mean the same as total alkalinity, and every test kit that tests for dKH with a single titration is giving total alkalinity. The only kit that I am aware of that even makes a distinction between carbonate alkalinity and total alkalinity is one of the Seachem kits (Reef Status: Magnesium, Carbonate, & Borate) and it thankfully doesnít use the term dKH at all. Consequently, most hobbyists should think of dKH as simply another measure of total alkalinity. The results obtained with such a kit (dKH) can be divided by 2.8 to yield the alkalinity in meq/L.

For those who are mathematically challenged, here is an alkalinity conversion table for all three units. Alkalinity Conversion Table
From the previous numbers given, if your CA is still at 420 mg/L then your numbers are looking pretty good. The CA and the Alk are balanced. To keep them there use a balanced solution for CA and ALK additions, such as Kalk, or the 2 part CA and ALK supplaments like B-ionic.
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Old 09-24-2002, 02:35 PM   #14
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What would you define (as) success?
I meant maintaining a steady drip without clogging, stopping up, or increasing flowrate. Keeping up with the kalk usage (making more) and ease of refilling or changing out containers.

Keeping your Ca above 400 ppm depends on your evaporation rate (if you're replenishing with only limewater).

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Old 09-24-2002, 04:03 PM   #15
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Well I am going into my 4th day of kalk usage. SHould I see an improvment in ca levels yet? I will check later on. I tested my PH and it looks like its holding steady as I took a reading in teh AM (pre lights) and a reading in the PM (with lights) both at about the middle of the light cycle and the readings looked to be around the same reading and I think it was 8.1.

Last time I took a alk reading it was 4meg/l

I have a ? for everyone. When do I clean the kalk jug of all the white residue on the bottom? I dont have much right now but I can see how each day adding more kalk will slowly cause more and more buildup on the bottom.
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Old 09-24-2002, 06:31 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by fishfreek
When do I clean the kalk jug of all the white residue on the bottom? I dont have much right now but I can see how each day adding more kalk will slowly cause more and more buildup on the bottom.
I suggest cleaning it out once a week. It's harmless until it gets to the depth where it could be sucked into the siphon. It's mostly CaCO3 and a little undissolved kalk powder. Both of which will slowly dissolve in fresh water.

To be honest, I clean mine out bi-month (every other month). but then I'm using two 5 gal buckets (Stage 1 and Stage 2).

Guy
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