Second New DIY Two Part Recipe with Higher pH Boost

Discussion in 'Reef Chemistry by Randy Holmes-Farley' started by Randy Holmes-Farley, Feb 5, 2018.

  1. Randy Holmes-Farley

    Randy Holmes-Farley Reef Chemist Staff Member Team R2R R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Article Contributor Expert Contributor

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    In a previous thread, I posted a true two part DIY recipe:

    https://www.reef2reef.com/threads/new-diy-two-part-recipes-with-higher-ph-boost.344500/

    But some folks may want to just swap the new ingredient into my 2/3 part recipe (as used by BRS, for example).

    Here's the original recipe link (which has a lot more discussion on the details and rationale):

    http://reefkeeping.com/issues/2006-02/rhf/index.php

    The new recipe is shown below. It has about twice the pH boost of the original recipe (#1) and should be added to a very high flow area. Initial cloudiness (magnesium hydroxide) is expected, but it should disperse and dissolve. If not, stop using it and figure out why.

    Alk part

    Add 283 grams of sodium hydroxide to 1 gallon of fresh water. It will get quite warm. Make sure it doesn't soften your container. This solution will contain about 1,900 meq/L of alkalinity (5,300 dKH). BE CAREFUL WITH THIS SOLUTION: IT HAS A pH ABOVE 14. Do not get it in your eyes or on your skin.

    Calcium part

    Dissolve 500 grams (about 2 ½ cups) of calcium chloride dihydrate (such as Dowflake 77-80% calcium chloride or ESV calcium chloride; see below for substitutes and sources) in enough water to make 1 gallon of total volume. You can dissolve it in about ½ gallon of water, and then pour that into the 1 gallon container and fill it to the top with more freshwater. This solution has about 37,000 ppm calcium.

    Magnesium part

    Dissolve Epsom salts (magnesium sulfate heptahydrate (3 cups) and magnesium chloride hexahydrate (5 cups) in enough purified freshwater to make 1 gallon total volume. There will likely be a precipitate that forms even if you fully dissolve both ingredients separately. That precipitate is calcium sulfate (calcium as an impurity in the magnesium chloride and sulfate from the Epsom salts). It is fine and appropriate to dose the precipitate along with the remainder of the fluid by shaking it up before dosing.

    This solution is added much less frequently or in lower volume than the other two parts. Add 16% as much as the other two parts. Over the time you add 1 gallon of the others, 1 add 610 mL (2 ½ cups) of this solution. You can add it all at once or, preferably, over time as you choose, depending on the aquarium's size and set up. Add it to a high flow area, preferably a sump. In a very small aquarium, or one without a sump, I suggest adding it slowly.
     
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  2. tgp4274

    tgp4274 Active Member R2R Supporter

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    kewl :)
     
  3. n4s

    n4s Member

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    Just curious, what is the reasoning for removing the 68.7 g of sodium sulfate compared to the other recipe? Any addional benefit removing or adding the 68.7 g of sodium sulfate?
    Thanks!
     
  4. revhtree

    revhtree Owner Administrator Staff Member Team R2R R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Photo of the Month Award Build Thread Contributor Article Contributor Partner Member 2018

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    Nice update!
     
  5. Randy Holmes-Farley

    Randy Holmes-Farley Reef Chemist Staff Member Team R2R R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Article Contributor Expert Contributor

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    It's a chemist's chess game where all the needed ingredients can fit in a true two part. :D

    The sulfate is supplied by the magnesium part in this 2/3 part recipe (via magnesium sulfate). Magnesium sulfate (despite being cheap and readily available at a drug store) cannot be put into either half of a true two part. Magnesium hydroxide precipitates from the alk part and calcium sulfate precipitates from the calcium part.

    In the other one (the true two part), only magnesium chloride is used for magnesium and it is put into the calcium part. You cannot use magnesium sulfate since sulfate cannot be put into the calcium part. Hence the need for sodium sulfate to provide the needed sulfate.
     
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  6. Randy Holmes-Farley

    Randy Holmes-Farley Reef Chemist Staff Member Team R2R R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Article Contributor Expert Contributor

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    Thanks. :)
     
  7. P-Dub

    P-Dub Active Member

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    Hi Randy, I was looking for the substitutes and sources and don't see them. Could I be missing something?
     
  8. WWIII

    WWIII Valuable Member R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Build Thread Contributor LMAS Member

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    That's an excerpt transposed from the original article Randy wrote. Here... http://reefkeeping.com/issues/2006-02/rhf/index.php

    I'm not sure what substitutes are available atm in bulk similar to dowflake. I just use brs calcium chloride. We'll see what Randy says. :D
     
  9. Randy Holmes-Farley

    Randy Holmes-Farley Reef Chemist Staff Member Team R2R R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Article Contributor Expert Contributor

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  10. P-Dub

    P-Dub Active Member

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    Roger that, I'll investigate the original article. Thank you.
     
  11. Acorral

    Acorral Member

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    Great news !

    Just curious about how to fit this in my tank...

    I use a clacium reactor, if I open the effluent to fit my needs my ph goes below 7.5 or even lower so i throtle it back a little bit and added kalkwasser reactor... Almost all of my evaporation is filled with saturated kalk, still my PH does not rise above 8 if i dont supplement it with a co2 scrubber...

    Can I combine this with the reactor to be able to open the effluent more and get rid of the kalk reactor?
     
  12. rck329

    rck329 Member

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    Thanks Randy! Great to get more options for dosing!

    Generally speaking, how much more caustic is sodium hydroxide solution vs. limewater? I know the ph difference, but what does that mean in terms of safety? For me, I am cautious around limewater, but have found minor splashes on my skin don't bother me much (assuming I rinse off within a few minutes).
     
  13. Randy Holmes-Farley

    Randy Holmes-Farley Reef Chemist Staff Member Team R2R R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Article Contributor Expert Contributor

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    It should be able to exactly replace any amount of limewater you are dosing, and then go beyond that just like adding more limewater would accomplish.
     
  14. Randy Holmes-Farley

    Randy Holmes-Farley Reef Chemist Staff Member Team R2R R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Article Contributor Expert Contributor

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    It is substantially worse than limewater, meaning faster to cause irritation, and more of it. I don’t want to minimize it in a public forum where someone might take it wrong and hurt themselves, but people handle these sorts of solutions all the time. Think drain cleaners/openers. Your eyes would be the most important thing to protect.
     
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  15. Acorral

    Acorral Member

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    I am dosing 4.5 liters of saturated kalk daily... How much of this would be needed to achieve the same calcium and alk dose?
     
  16. Cory

    Cory Valuable Member R2R Supporter Article Contributor

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    What sort of plastic is best for this? Would hdpe be suitable for sodium hydroxide?
     
  17. Myka

    Myka Well-Known Member

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    Randy, is there any reason the Sodium hydroxide solution can't be mixed with the typical trace elements that are added to the alkalinity part? I'll play the game provided I can still add in the Fauna Marin Balling Light Trace 3.
     
  18. Mindi

    Mindi Active Member

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    Randy....I am beyond my chemistry skills here..

    I switched to your new NaOH formula which included Magnesium. My observations after a month are that I have certainly had a pH boost of about 0.1 which is enough to make me happy. Its amazing how much better 7.9 to 8.0 looks than 7.8 to 7.9...LOL

    But my Magnesium (which was too low around 1150) has gone to close to 1500, it maxes out my Salifert titration.

    Is the new post you have above at start of this thread the original recipe 1 but with NaOH in the Alk part.....moving the Mag to a third solution dosed independently or have I got myself confused...?

    Thanks..........John
     
  19. Acorral

    Acorral Member

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    I think i answered my question...

    Kalkwaser is 40.8 meq/l and tjis one 1900?

    It that huge the difference?
     
  20. Randy Holmes-Farley

    Randy Holmes-Farley Reef Chemist Staff Member Team R2R R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award Article Contributor Expert Contributor

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    MY DIY two part recipes are 46 times more potent than saturated limewater. So you need about 100 mL of each part each day.

    You can use this calculator and the entry for Randy's Recipe #1:

    http://reef.diesyst.com/chemcalc/chem_calc3.html
     
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