Calcium reactor vs kalkwasser

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AlwaysHatingNathan

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Hey everybody I was wonder what’s everyone thoughts on using ether? Currently I use kalkwasser in my top off and have had good success in keep stable parameters. But thinking making a frag tank eventually and was considering a calcium reactor. What’s everybody thoughts on calcium reactors? Or should I just use kalk in that one to? Or both?
 
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WIReefer

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If my system ever gets to the point where I need a calcium reactor I definitely will be grabbing one. But I would say if Kalk is doing the job I would stick with that much cheaper. Would just keep monitoring
 

HuduVudu

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There is a way to dose kalkwasser without being reliant on top-off.

If you can get through the ugliness in the middle of this thread, you will see how it is done.

 

blasterman

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Calcium hydroxide (kalk) hits a wall because you can only add so much to a tank in 24 hours before excessive precipitation sets in. This varies with individual tanks based on their pH and existing calcium/alk levels. My tanks can take about 1/4 teaspoon of kalk per 10gal in 24 hours before I start seeing precipitate.

As long as your calcium and alk needs are below this you are fine.

Beyond kalk its a choice of dosing vs calcium reactor. Reactors should be considered in high consumption tanks because they are tougher to dial in with lower consumption levels.

Vudu is just dissolving kalk in a weak acid. It doesn't accomplish what he thinks it does
 

HuduVudu

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Calcium hydroxide (kalk) hits a wall because you can only add so much to a tank in 24 hours before excessive precipitation sets in.
Not true I lay out how to do it without this being an issue.

This varies with individual tanks based on their pH and existing calcium/alk levels.
Once again wrong. It has nothing to do with PH or calcium/alk and everything to do with evaporation. Using a kalk stirrer ensures saturated solution without over saturation. Over saturation of the solution is what causes the problems with calcium storm i.e. "excesss" kalk.

My tanks can take about 1/4 teaspoon of kalk per 10gal in 24 hours before I start seeing precipitate.
Your doing it wrong. You need to saturate the solution before you put it in, and surprise the precipitate will form in an saturated solution. Even if you do use a lower dose then you will still get precipitate forming on the air water interface.

Vudu is just dissolving kalk in a weak acid. It doesn't accomplish what he thinks it does

Hmmm perhaps you could tell me more about my 20 gallon SPS tank using the method I describe? Maybe I am not seeing something or perhaps maybe my corals are missing something that told them that they shouldn't grow. I really like it when people make assumptions about something they don't care to know anything about. Then proclaim their wisdom without any understanding of what is happening.
 
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George81

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I was using kalk and eventually had to dose a few times a week. I rebuilt my geo calcium reactor I had stored for 12+ years. I hated dosing. my choice would be reactor over kalk.
I don’t notice much of a ph difference. I drip the effluent into the fuge. My ph when I check it is 8.15ish. I also use caribsea arm. It’s all I ever used.
 

Ben Pedersen

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Kalk works great even for systems requiring lots of Alk and Ca. I have been using it for over 10 years. There does come a point where you may need more alk and Ca then just kalk alone can provide. That is when you start mixing vinegar into your Kalk powder before mixing with your RO water. Adding vinegar boosts Alk and Ca. This is not a theory. :) Took the photos below the other night.

D6A9DA10-D878-4E38-84A6-C236D14DDAD4.jpeg

F357D46B-8EE4-4C26-8BF8-86E6C4F88ABE.jpeg

1D61F7D0-6790-45B5-AA22-EAA8AEE00C72.png
 

jda

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You can have some really great results with both. It comes down to your demand, tank size, your needs and what you feel comfortable with. There is not right or wrong answer here, just what is right for you. There are pros and cons for each that mostly amount to a hill of beans in most cases if you are doing everything else right (more trace elements in CaRx media, or higher pH with kalk, for example of hills of beans especially if you change water and are getting traces anyway, or your house is not full of an unhealthy amount of co2 to being with for bad air exchange).

If you are going to dose kalk, I would have some acid laying around in case you have an overdose. It might never be able to help, but better to have it than not...
 

Ben Pedersen

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Ben, do you run a CaRx too or only kalk? Great looking tank btw


corey
Thanks Corey.. I use Kalk, vinegar and hand dos some amino acids about twice a week. I think my home made fish and coral food replace trace elements pretty well.

I don't do regular water changes. I did a 15 gallons change tonight.. first time in three months and only because some of the palys and zoaz in my sump are behaving strangely (closed up). I have been painting in the house the last 2 days and just wanted to makes sure the fumes or my dirty hands did't cause any problems.

The only thing I worry about is low magnesium. It has gotten pretty low a few times.. I have magnesium salts but seem to mess it up every time I use it.. Some of my more sensitive coals loose color after use.

I should really do more water changes just to keep magnesium higher.
 

Ben Pedersen

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You can have some really great results with both. It comes down to your demand, tank size, your needs and what you feel comfortable with. There is not right or wrong answer here, just what is right for you. There are pros and cons for each that mostly amount to a hill of beans in most cases if you are doing everything else right (more trace elements in CaRx media, or higher pH with kalk, for example of hills of beans especially if you change water and are getting traces anyway, or your house is not full of an unhealthy amount of co2 to being with for bad air exchange).

If you are going to dose kalk, I would have some acid laying around in case you have an overdose. It might never be able to help, but better to have it than not...
I've had to use carbonated water a few times to lower PH.. :) I find a lot bubbles also lowers PH pretty quickly.
 

Ben Pedersen

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You can have some really great results with both. It comes down to your demand, tank size, your needs and what you feel comfortable with. There is not right or wrong answer here, just what is right for you. There are pros and cons for each that mostly amount to a hill of beans in most cases if you are doing everything else right (more trace elements in CaRx media, or higher pH with kalk, for example of hills of beans especially if you change water and are getting traces anyway, or your house is not full of an unhealthy amount of co2 to being with for bad air exchange).

If you are going to dose kalk, I would have some acid laying around in case you have an overdose. It might never be able to help, but better to have it than not...
I wonder how many gallon tank (packed with SPS) is the upper limit of fully saturated lime water spiked with vinegar (.6 cups CaOH and about 3 cups vinegar for 10 gallons of RO). I am only using .6 cups CaOH and 1.75 cups vinegar per 10 gallons of RO for my current 85 gallon tank.

I am in he process of setting up a 400 gallon system. I plan to just use kalk and vinegar like I have been doing. I hope it works. I may have to do something different with 400 gallons. :(
 
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AlwaysHatingNathan

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Kalk works great even for systems requiring lots of Alk and Ca. I have been using it for over 10 years. There does come a point where you may need more alk and Ca then just kalk alone can provide. That is when you start mixing vinegar into your Kalk powder before mixing with your RO water. Adding vinegar boosts Alk and Ca. This is not a theory. :) Took the photos below the other night.

D6A9DA10-D878-4E38-84A6-C236D14DDAD4.jpeg

F357D46B-8EE4-4C26-8BF8-86E6C4F88ABE.jpeg

1D61F7D0-6790-45B5-AA22-EAA8AEE00C72.png
Beautiful freaking tank
 

jda

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There are other issues of putting vinegar in your tank. You might love it or you might hate it, but it needs reckoning.

I have long passed the ability to replace evaporated water with saturated kalk. Every tank is different.
 
Fritz

HuduVudu

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The only thing I worry about is low magnesium. It has gotten pretty low a few times..
I managed to get magnesium carbonate. It has near the same solubility as calcium hydroxide. I haven't tried it yet because so far my magnesium is good, but it might work for you. :)

I wonder how many gallon tank (packed with SPS) is the upper limit of fully saturated lime water spiked with vinegar (.6 cups CaOH and about 3 cups vinegar for 10 gallons of RO). I am only using .6 cups CaOH and 1.75 cups vinegar per 10 gallons of RO for my current 85 gallon tank.
I am carbonating tank water and then adding calcium hydroxide. It is working well for me. I have a 20 gallon breeder so it amplifies mineralization demands pretty quickly. Just food for thought.
 

Ben Pedersen

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I managed to get magnesium carbonate. It has near the same solubility as calcium hydroxide. I haven't tried it yet because so far my magnesium is good, but it might work for you. :)


I am carbonating tank water and then adding calcium hydroxide. It is working well for me. I have a 20 gallon breeder so it amplifies mineralization demands pretty quickly. Just food for thought.
Interesting, vinegar has worked really well for me because I have lots of big fish and need help keeping nutrient levels down. However, if you get any bad bugs in your tank, vinegar is fuel for them. A couple years back I accidently introduced a bad bug into my tank (either a soil bacterium or frag swap bad bacterium) that wiped out the majority of my large old colonies. Very sad.. :(. I now have an appropriately sized UV sterilizer as insurnace.

I guess I have been very blessed. In my 37 years reefing, I had never had any problems like above. I think there are more bad bugs floating around these days. Really wondering how to keep them out of the 400+ gallon I am in the process of setting up.
 

jda

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In addition to organic carbon dosing lifting all ships, good and bad, as mentioned above, in some reefs, the lifting of some surface and waterborne bacteria can outcompete corals for nitrogen. This has been bad in some cases. Again, each case is different, but it is probably good to quantify and qualify this before recommending kalk dosing with vinegar for extra potency.
 

Ben Pedersen

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In addition to organic carbon dosing lifting all ships, good and bad, as mentioned above, in some reefs, the lifting of some surface and waterborne bacteria can outcompete corals for nitrogen. This has been bad in some cases. Again, each case is different, but it is probably good to quantify and qualify this before recommending kalk dosing with vinegar for extra potency.
I agree, Kalk and vinegar must be used cautiously. Like most things reefing, you need to take it slow and test key parameters as you go. If you decide to stop using vinegar, you shouldn't just stop, you should decrease it slowly.
 
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