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Old 12-08-2011, 11:40 PM   #1
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Good test kit

What one should I buy and what all do I need to be able to test for? I want to keep fish and corals and I already have the API master saltwater kit

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Old 12-09-2011, 12:24 AM   #2
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Get the reef master kit. Then maybe magnesium and iodine tests. Some people bash API. I think it's mostly cause the nitrate test can be hard to read. But does it really matter if you can't tell the differnce between 40 and 160? Either way its too high.
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Old 12-09-2011, 12:30 AM   #3
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K cool, ill see if the lfs has it
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Old 12-09-2011, 12:33 AM   #4
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If you can, buy online. It will probably be about half price. I think amazon has them fir under $20.
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Old 12-09-2011, 12:36 AM   #5
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Just looked it up. $22.39
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Old 12-09-2011, 12:38 AM   #6
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I probably will go with that
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Old 12-09-2011, 12:41 AM   #7
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I don't like my Instant Ocean ones very much. I'm getting the reef master ones when the packets run out. IO ones take forever, and water testing takes like 30 - 45 minutes per tank. plus you have to be very precise with them.
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Old 12-09-2011, 12:47 AM   #8
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Oh yea. One thing about the "nicer" kits is a lot of them come with a little syringe thing. Just get a a baby medicine dispenser. Prob not really a problem since u of course rinse your tubes. But I don't that crap in my tank.
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Old 12-09-2011, 11:31 PM   #9
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So I got the reef master. Tomorrow morning I'll test phosphates, carbonate hardness, and calcium.

Just so I know, what do I want all those to be at?
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Old 12-10-2011, 01:15 AM   #10
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Phosphate-0
Calcium-420
dKH-8-12
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Old 12-10-2011, 01:16 AM   #11
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K thanks
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Old 12-10-2011, 01:37 AM   #12
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I just tested. Calcium 360, dkh 11 or 196.9ppm, and phosphates I can't really tell its practically clear
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Old 12-10-2011, 02:24 AM   #13
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Sounds pretty good. Do a partial water change and see what happens. If ur using good salt hopefully your calcium will go up to over 400. Once you start stocking corals it will start dropping faster. If your water changes can't kepp up you'll need to start dosing calcium or kalk washer. Kalk wash will also help with dkh and stabalize your ph.
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Old 12-10-2011, 02:27 AM   #14
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I've been using pre mixed water from the lfs. Should I just start mixing my own?
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Old 12-10-2011, 08:29 AM   #15
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If your lfs is using quality salt stick with it, there probably mixing using RO water which will eliminate most of your phosphates right there. depending on how many sps and lps you have will determine how fast your calcium and magnesium are being depleted. Anther good dosing is oceans blend part 1&2.
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Old 12-10-2011, 09:14 AM   #16
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I just started dosing recently and I pretty much have a full tank of corals, including some sps. It took months of stocking them to finally see a decrease in my calcium and alkalinity on a daily basis.

I would just stock as you want and test occasionally to see if there is any depletion. You for sure dont want to start messing with dosing if it's not actually needed right off.

Find out what salt mix your lfs uses for their water, I'm sure they will tell you. I just use I/O reef crystals right now but have been thinking of switching to Red sea as I hear it has more calcium, kh and magnesium in it and those are the elements that go down with corals using them.

Hope that helps some.
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Old 12-10-2011, 03:37 PM   #17
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Well his SG is low, like 1.022 usually in his pre mixed and his display tanks but I like to keep mine similar to his because I buy all my fish from him so acclimation is easier. Could that be why its low? But I'll ask what mix he uses and just keep an eye on it

But for phosphates how i said it came out practically clear, does that mean its low? It didn't seem to match any color on the card
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Old 12-10-2011, 03:45 PM   #18
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Yep, if its a clear result then youre good, clear usually means 0 and you want as close to 0 as you can get.
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Old 12-10-2011, 03:47 PM   #19
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Yea your phosphates r probably zero. And the lower sg could definately be the cause of the lower calcium, cause it's not really that low. And he's probably not using the best salts.
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Old 12-10-2011, 03:48 PM   #20
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Should I just leave SG how it is or slowly raise it a little
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