Neptune trident and its readings help

elcapitan1993

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So finally decided to buy a Alex and the trident witch cost me a lot of money, I set everything up and waited a few days to calibrate the trident, but it has been reading my calcium as pretty high since I have gotten it and now a little higher after calibration, my salifert says my calcium is 480 but my trident says 559, alk and mag see to be reading fairly close, do I need to exchange my trident for a different one? What do I do? And yes I have been having problems getting my magnesium to raise up I have been dosing brighteell
Magnesium p almost every day

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Shirak

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So finally decided to buy a Alex and the trident witch cost me a lot of money, I set everything up and waited a few days to calibrate the trident, but it has been reading my calcium as pretty high since I have gotten it and now a little higher after calibration, my salifert says my calcium is 480 but my trident says 559, alk and mag see to be reading fairly close, do I need to exchange my trident for a different one? What do I do? And yes I have been having problems getting my magnesium to raise up I have been dosing brighteell
Magnesium p almost every day

909A771E-F26C-4705-9C37-ED42ED43CA62.png
After you ran the calibration did it display the numbers as stated on the calibration fluid bottle?
 

Waters

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My Ca has read high from day one, and continues to read high almost a year later. After calibration it is pretty spot on, but gradually increases over time. Like yours, the other readings are very close to other test kits.
 

blaxsun

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My Ca has read high from day one, and continues to read high almost a year later. After calibration it is pretty spot on, but gradually increases over time. Like yours, the other readings are very close to other test kits.
Having the same issue. Recalibrated today and everything matches the numbers on the bottle exactly. After the first set of tests alkalinity is ok, magnesium is about 100 less (2 kits tested 1280-1290) and calcium is about 100 more (2 kits tested @425-440).

I did prime the sample line and ran two combined sets of tests a few hours apart (numbers were consistent). I wonder if it has to do with where I’m drawing water for the sample from?
 
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Waters

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Having the same issue. Recalibrated today and everything matches the numbers on the bottle exactly. After the first set of tests alkalinity is ok, magnesium is about 100 less (2 kits tested 1280-1290) and calcium is about 100 more (2 kits tested @425-440).

I did prime the sample line and ran two combined sets of tests a few hours apart (numbers were consistent). I wonder if it has to do with where I’m drawing water for the sample from?
That shouldn't affect the readings at all unless you are pulling your sample right next to where you are dosing. Even then, it wouldn't explain the gradual increase over time. I don't know.....I wish we could figure it out.
 

Shirak

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Having the same issue. Recalibrated today and everything matches the numbers on the bottle exactly. After the first set of tests alkalinity is ok, magnesium is about 100 less (2 kits tested 1280-1290) and calcium is about 100 more (2 kits tested @425-440).

I did prime the sample line and ran two combined sets of tests a few hours apart (numbers were consistent). I wonder if it has to do with where I’m drawing water for the sample from?
Curious why you think the issue is with the Trident if it read the calibration fluid correctly?
 

blaxsun

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Curious why you think the issue is with the Trident if it read the calibration fluid correctly?
That’s just it - I don’t think the Trident is reading the calibration fluid correctly (or the values of the calibration fluid are off). When you run the calibration the values always match the label on the white bottle - but that doesn’t mean that the Trident was calibrated correctly.

I watched the entire calibration process yesterday (twice), and during the calibration the values jump all over the place before settling on the values you entered. That tells me that the Trident is taking readings and then making an internal adjustment to match the values on the calibration fluid.

I ran numerous tests yesterday on my alkalinity, calcium and magnesium - using both digital and off the shelf test kits. The numbers were consistent (within 10-20ppm and 0.1 dKH). The only one that reasonably matched post-calibration was alkalinity.

Alkalinity (tested prior): 8.386 dKH
Alkalinity (calibration fluid): 8.25 dKH
Alkalinity (first test post-calibration): 8.26 dKH

Calcium (tested prior): 440ppm, 460ppm
Calcium (calibration fluid): 455ppm
Calcium (first test post-calibration): 570ppm

Magnesium (tested prior): 1260ppm, 1250ppm
Magnesium (calibration fluid): 1170ppm
Magnesium (first test post-calibration): 1152ppm

So 0.14 dKH isn’t a huge difference, but +110 to +130 calcium and -98 to -110 magnesium isn’t even remotely close or within error tollerances.
 

Shirak

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I would expect the numbers to jump around while it calibrates. In the past I have run my excess calibration fluid through my Hanna and NYOS and Salifert test kits and have obtained results pretty close to the bottle. You could try running the Trident through the 3 tests on the remaining calibration solution after it completes the calibration process to see if comes up with the same 3 numbers. I also have Fauna Marina reference solution on hand. Might be worth just trying that out sometime just having it run the 3 tests to see if the Trident matches the bottle. \

Do you run the calibration immediately after changing the bottles? I usually wait one day to let all the fluids change in the tubes reagent tubes, or prime everything before running calibration.
 

blaxsun

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I would expect the numbers to jump around while it calibrates. In the past I have run my excess calibration fluid through my Hanna and NYOS and Salifert test kits and have obtained results pretty close to the bottle. You could try running the Trident through the 3 tests on the remaining calibration solution after it completes the calibration process to see if comes up with the same 3 numbers. I also have Fauna Marina reference solution on hand. Might be worth just trying that out sometime just having it run the 3 tests to see if the Trident matches the bottle. \

Do you run the calibration immediately after changing the bottles? I usually wait one day to let all the fluids change in the tubes reagent tubes, or prime everything before running calibration.
I haven't tried running off-the-shelf tests on the calibration fluid - that's a good idea that I'll try next time (since apparently it's only accurate for ~8 hours after opening). I ran the first calibration after the first set of reagents had been in-use for a few days and the second set of calibrations several weeks after.

Here's the thing: since my tank has been up and running for several months, I've not dosed a drop of calcium. Zero. The Tropic Marin salt I've been using is around 450ppm calcium. So even with occasional water changes, the calcium would be at or slightly below this value. There's just no way for it to increase. And I know this because I've been watching my salinity tip down over the past week due to acclimating a lot of new fish. Conversely, I have been dosing magnesium and alkalinity for the past month. So there's no way that the magnesium values could actually be significantly lower than the 1250ppm - because I've been dosing it on a daily basis with the DOS.

I've been running a mix of Salifert, Aquaforest, RedSea, Nyos and Hanna tests over the past month. User error aside, the results of the titration and digital tests are always pretty close. And by close, I mean within ±0.2 dKH and ±20-40ppm. There's just no way the Trident could be reading values that are ±100-130ppm higher or lower than the titration and digital tests I'm also running. Either something's off with the Trident or every single test kit I'm using is flawed.
 
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blaxsun

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I took a suggestion from another thread to input the titration values from my tank and use the actual tank water during the calibration.

Alkalinity: 8.386 dKH (tested), 8.4 dKH value (entered for calibration)
Calcium: 440-460ppm (tested), 450ppm value (entered for calibration)
Magnesium: 1250-1260ppm (tested), 1255ppm value (entered for calibration)

Post-calibration Tests
Alkalinity: 8.4 dKH (calibration)
Alkalinity: 8.4 dKH (post-calibration)
Alkalinity: 8.46 dKH (06:00)
Alkalinity: 8.4 dKH (12:00)

Calcium: 450ppm (calibration)
Calcium: 461ppm (post-calibration)
Calcium: 440ppm (12:00)

Magnesium: 1255ppm (calibration)
Magnesium: 1251ppm (post-calibration)
Magnesium: 1260ppm (12:00)
 

Shirak

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I took a suggestion from another thread to input the titration values from my tank and use the actual tank water during the calibration.

Alkalinity: 8.386 dKH (tested), 8.4 dKH value (entered for calibration)
Calcium: 440-460ppm (tested), 450ppm value (entered for calibration)
Magnesium: 1250-1260ppm (tested), 1255ppm value (entered for calibration)

Post-calibration Tests
Alkalinity: 8.4 dKH (calibration)
Alkalinity: 8.4 dKH (post-calibration)
Alkalinity: 8.46 dKH (06:00)
Alkalinity: 8.4 dKH (12:00)

Calcium: 450ppm (calibration)
Calcium: 461ppm (post-calibration)
Calcium: 440ppm (12:00)

Magnesium: 1255ppm (calibration)
Magnesium: 1251ppm (post-calibration)
Magnesium: 1260ppm (12:00)
I know some others that do that without any issue. I run a CaRx so I don't worry about Ca.. it's high but that's ok. Alk is more important to me personally. I do sometimes dose Mg even with the Mg media in the reactor.

Do you have a lot of coralline? They will suck the Mg like no tomorrow.
 

blaxsun

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I know some others that do that without any issue. I run a CaRx so I don't worry about Ca.. it's high but that's ok. Alk is more important to me personally. I do sometimes dose Mg even with the Mg media in the reactor.

Do you have a lot of coralline? They will suck the Mg like no tomorrow.
No - hardly any coralline. The tank is less than 2 months old, although about half of the rock was transplanted from two other tanks that were about 8 months old. I have a lot of zoas, some LPS and 1-2 SPS corals. There’s some coralline on the rocks, back of the tank, etc.

I’m not overly concerned if the calcium and magnesium levels are a bit high, only that the Trident is giving me an approximation (since it regulates and influences the amount of alkalinity and magnesium through the DOS).
 

DrGiga

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I use trident for about 8 months. I learned that it is very sensitive to salinity and temperature. Monitoring your conductivity and salinity and temperature will tell you how variation in alkalinity and Ca are related to the change of the temperature and salinity.
I also get high reading in Ca but within 20% of RedSea test kit. I think it is expected to have variation within 20%.
meanwhile, I just keep track of Alkalinity and monitor Ca.
 

blaxsun

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I use trident for about 8 months. I learned that it is very sensitive to salinity and temperature. Monitoring your conductivity and salinity and temperature will tell you how variation in alkalinity and Ca are related to the change of the temperature and salinity.
I also get high reading in Ca but within 20% of RedSea test kit. I think it is expected to have variation within 20%.
meanwhile, I just keep track of Alkalinity and monitor Ca.
I'm keeping a close eye on salinity and temperature as well (pretty consistent, averaging 77.5°-78° and between 34.8-35 salinity). The alkalinity seems to be the most accurate, so I think I'll just keep occasionally testing calcium and magnesium and see how much the Trident measurements vary. Thanks for the suggestions.
 

jamo130788

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I took a suggestion from another thread to input the titration values from my tank and use the actual tank water during the calibration.

Alkalinity: 8.386 dKH (tested), 8.4 dKH value (entered for calibration)
Calcium: 440-460ppm (tested), 450ppm value (entered for calibration)
Magnesium: 1250-1260ppm (tested), 1255ppm value (entered for calibration)

Post-calibration Tests
Alkalinity: 8.4 dKH (calibration)
Alkalinity: 8.4 dKH (post-calibration)
Alkalinity: 8.46 dKH (06:00)
Alkalinity: 8.4 dKH (12:00)

Calcium: 450ppm (calibration)
Calcium: 461ppm (post-calibration)
Calcium: 440ppm (12:00)

Magnesium: 1255ppm (calibration)
Magnesium: 1251ppm (post-calibration)
Magnesium: 1260ppm (12:00)
Can you post the thread with suggestion mentioned above , I’m having wacky readings on my trident
 

blaxsun

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Can you post the thread with suggestion mentioned above , I’m having wacky readings on my trident
I honestly don’t recall where I found the specific thread (I think it was just a comment or two), but basically what I did was this:
1. Run manual testing (digital, titration, etc.) on each parameter. Take the average.
2. Run the Trident calibration with the sample line in the tank (sump, etc.) and use the numbers from #1.

Several weeks in and the numbers seem consistent.
 

pixelhustler

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I was just battling an issue where my Calcium reading dropped from 450 to 330 in a matter of days, and increasing my dosing via DoS made no difference. I decided to use a test kit to double check and my Calcium came in at 560 since I had been overcompensating my dosing. I did a couple of water changes, calibrated my Trident twice and the readings are a bit more accurate but still way off for a $600 piece of equipment. My Trident is brand new, still on my first set or reagents.

After calibration, the Trident will display the exact calibration numbers on the bottle, it’s not an actual test. Running a combined test using the calibration fluid will show you the actual accuracy. I wish I tried this but I didn’t think of it and the fluid expires after 8h of opening.

A quick google search revealed this is a common problem especially with Calcium and sometimes Magnesium. Thankfully, Alkalinity seems to be +-.5 so fairly accurate, which is good news. Some people online called Neptune and customer service suggested their test kits aren’t accurate (LOL) so once again Neptune is deflecting. The bottom line is Neptune products make reefing awesome and enjoyable when they work, but they do fail often. The EB832 energy bar and the Trident are prime examples. I hope they get it together soon because I’m ready to give up and go old school, so that at least I can control my own mistakes rather than rolling the dice on a poorly designed piece of equipment.
 

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Nerdist Aquarist

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My preference is not to use the calibration solution provided in the Trident reagent kits. The levels are generally too far off (lower) from what I like to run my tank. I prefer to use my Salifert tests on Alk, Calcium and Magnesium and calibrate using those results. I also clean the mixing chamber of the Trident with a q-tip every 2 months when changing out the reagents. Super simple to do once you get the hang of it, don't even have to disconnect any tubes, just unscrew the 4 bottom screws and pop the cover off. Any stain buildup on the sides of the mixing chamber will slowly offset the results of the tests.
 
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