Silicate dosing?

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Randy Holmes-Farley

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Earlier I ordered the exact bottles @Randy Holmes-Farley recommended.

What is dosing amount? And yes, I've been battling Amphidinium Dinoflagellates with no luck for months. This is it, doesn't work im tearing down my system.
 

Randy Holmes-Farley

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How much and what to dose?
I’d suggest dosing sodium silicate solution, as it is a readily soluble form of silica. It is very inexpensive. I initially used a high quality laboratory grade, but I’d expect the bulk grades sold to the world at large to be good enough (and I use it now). Remember, you aren’t dosing much, and the solutions available are very concentrated. You may find “water glass’ in certain stores because it is used by consumers for things like preserving eggs. Buying chemicals can be problematic for many people, however, and this hobby chemistry store 43 sells to individuals. Ten dollars (+ shipping) gets you enough to last 150 years of dosing with a 100-gallon tank, so cost is not an issue. I just ordered some from them myself and it came broken open, unfortunately. Some of you may have gotten Christmas presents that had ¾ of a gallon of sodium silicate solution coating them as they passed my package in the mail. Nevertheless, I
still have enough for several years!).

Many “water glass” or sodium silicate solutions are sold with the concentration indicated by “° Baume”. Degrees Baume is a measure of the specific gravity, and values in the 40’s are typical of these concentrated solutions. A concentration of 41° Baume equates to 29% SiO2 by weight. Note that the density is high (1.38 g/mL for 41° Baume), so volume measurements should take this into account. Maybe eventually, some of the hobby supplement manufacturers will provide a supplement.

Safety note: Sodium Silicate solution is very basic (high pH). In fact, the pH can be substantially higher than limewater, so it is very corrosive to tissue and to metal devices. Be careful to not spill it on yourself, wear some eye protection, and if you spill it on something metal, wash it. In all cases, extensive washing with water is recommended in case of spills or exposure.

Based on my dosing experience, aquarists are probably safe dosing the equivalent of 1 ppm SiO2 once every 1-2 weeks. That is based on the fact that my tank used that much in less than 4 days without having any sort of “bad” reaction. Of course, there’s nothing wrong with starting at a tenth of that and ramping up. And, of course, if you do get too much in the way of diatoms, just back off on the dosing. I presume that all that I added to my tank went into various organisms that us it (sponges, diatoms, etc), but perhaps I have more sponges than other aquarists, and diatoms consequently may be more of a concern in some tanks than in mine.

I’d also advise occasionally checking the soluble silica concentration in the water, in case the demand in your tank is substantially less than mine. If the concentration started to rise above 3 ppm SiO2, even in the absence of diatoms, I’d probably reduce the dose rate because that is close to the maximum concentration that surface seawater ever attains.

Here’s how to determine dosing amounts. I’ll assume that you want 1 ppm SiO2 dosing, and you can scale from there. If the concentration of the supplement is 29% silica by weight (41° Baume), then it is 290,000 ppm silica. To get to 1 ppm silica, you then need to dilute by 290,000 fold. If you add 1.3 grams of this supplement (0.96 mL) to a tank with 100 gallons (378,500 mL), then the final concentration will be about 1 ppm SiO2. I’d disperse the concentrated silicate solution into some fresh water before adding it to the tank, and then add it to a high flow area. Because the pH is high, you likely will see some cloudiness that is mostly magnesium hydroxide. The magnesium hydroxide will dissolve without a problem, but to be safe, add the supplement in a high flow area.
 
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How much and what to dose?
I’d suggest dosing sodium silicate solution, as it is a readily soluble form of silica. It is very inexpensive. I initially used a high quality laboratory grade, but I’d expect the bulk grades sold to the world at large to be good enough (and I use it now). Remember, you aren’t dosing much, and the solutions available are very concentrated. You may find “water glass’ in certain stores because it is used by consumers for things like preserving eggs. Buying chemicals can be problematic for many people, however, and this hobby chemistry store 43 sells to individuals. Ten dollars (+ shipping) gets you enough to last 150 years of dosing with a 100-gallon tank, so cost is not an issue. I just ordered some from them myself and it came broken open, unfortunately. Some of you may have gotten Christmas presents that had ¾ of a gallon of sodium silicate solution coating them as they passed my package in the mail. Nevertheless, I
still have enough for several years!).

Many “water glass” or sodium silicate solutions are sold with the concentration indicated by “° Baume”. Degrees Baume is a measure of the specific gravity, and values in the 40’s are typical of these concentrated solutions. A concentration of 41° Baume equates to 29% SiO2 by weight. Note that the density is high (1.38 g/mL for 41° Baume), so volume measurements should take this into account. Maybe eventually, some of the hobby supplement manufacturers will provide a supplement.

Safety note: Sodium Silicate solution is very basic (high pH). In fact, the pH can be substantially higher than limewater, so it is very corrosive to tissue and to metal devices. Be careful to not spill it on yourself, wear some eye protection, and if you spill it on something metal, wash it. In all cases, extensive washing with water is recommended in case of spills or exposure.

Based on my dosing experience, aquarists are probably safe dosing the equivalent of 1 ppm SiO2 once every 1-2 weeks. That is based on the fact that my tank used that much in less than 4 days without having any sort of “bad” reaction. Of course, there’s nothing wrong with starting at a tenth of that and ramping up. And, of course, if you do get too much in the way of diatoms, just back off on the dosing. I presume that all that I added to my tank went into various organisms that us it (sponges, diatoms, etc), but perhaps I have more sponges than other aquarists, and diatoms consequently may be more of a concern in some tanks than in mine.

I’d also advise occasionally checking the soluble silica concentration in the water, in case the demand in your tank is substantially less than mine. If the concentration started to rise above 3 ppm SiO2, even in the absence of diatoms, I’d probably reduce the dose rate because that is close to the maximum concentration that surface seawater ever attains.

Here’s how to determine dosing amounts. I’ll assume that you want 1 ppm SiO2 dosing, and you can scale from there. If the concentration of the supplement is 29% silica by weight (41° Baume), then it is 290,000 ppm silica. To get to 1 ppm silica, you then need to dilute by 290,000 fold. If you add 1.3 grams of this supplement (0.96 mL) to a tank with 100 gallons (378,500 mL), then the final concentration will be about 1 ppm SiO2. I’d disperse the concentrated silicate solution into some fresh water before adding it to the tank, and then add it to a high flow area. Because the pH is high, you likely will see some cloudiness that is mostly magnesium hydroxide. The magnesium hydroxide will dissolve without a problem, but to be safe, add the supplement in a high flow area.

@Randy Holmes-Farley I am having a hard time following your recipe. I picked up some loudwolf 41% water glass and and trying to calculate a dosage. I read somewhere else that for 40% solutions adding .1ml per 15 gallons =1ppm. This makes sense for a solution thats 12% more concentrated but looking for a formula I can follow.
 

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Exact dosing is far from critical. Just dose a little less than I suggested above (reposted below) and it will be close to 1 ppm.

If you add 1.3 grams of this supplement (0.96 mL) to a tank with 100 gallons (378,500 mL), then the final concentration will be about 1 ppm SiO2.
 
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Randy Holmes-Farley

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Old post but did this work for you?

I'm not sure how it could not work to dose silicate. If you expect some particular response after doing so, that may possibly vary. :)
 

Karliefish

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I got this. Let us know if you need help with dilution to dose into your tank ;)
I just got this and am struggling to figure out the correct dosing amount. My tank is 350 Gallons. I am desperately fighting a bad bad case of dinos
 

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Would I be safe using this solution right here? Seems to have the same silica concentration as the other one linked earlier.
 
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Would I be safe using this solution right here? Seems to have the same silica concentration as the other one linked earlier.

It is probably fine, but I personally prefer buying a solution and avoiding the issues in dissolving it.
 

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I just got this and am struggling to figure out the correct dosing amount. My tank is 350 Gallons. I am desperately fighting a bad bad case of dinos

Did you get this figred out?
 

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Would I be safe using this solution right here? Seems to have the same silica concentration as the other one linked earlier.
I asked the retailer and they said it was a solution. I ordered some to best Prorocentrum.
 

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Randy Holmes-Farley

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Sadly no. Was hoping to find an oline calculator that would do the math for me - LO L.. I am assuming one doesn’t exist? Looking for silicate dosing for dummies


Silica Dosing Recommendations
Why would I recommend dosing silica? Largely because creatures in our tanks use it, the concentrations in our tanks (at least in mine) are below natural levels, and the sponges, mollusks, and diatoms may not be getting enough to thrive.


How much and what to dose?
I’d suggest dosing sodium silicate solution, as it is a readily soluble form of silica. It is very inexpensive. I initially used a high quality laboratory grade, but I’d expect the bulk grades sold to the world at large to be good enough (and I use it now). Remember, you aren’t dosing much, and the solutions available are very concentrated. You may find “water glass’ in certain stores because it is used by consumers for things like preserving eggs. Buying chemicals can be problematic for many people, however, and this hobby chemistry store 43 sells to individuals. Ten dollars (+ shipping) gets you enough to last 150 years of dosing with a 100-gallon tank, so cost is not an issue. I just ordered some from them myself and it came broken open, unfortunately. Some of you may have gotten Christmas presents that had ¾ of a gallon of sodium silicate solution coating them as they passed my package in the mail. Nevertheless, I
still have enough for several years!).

Many “water glass” or sodium silicate solutions are sold with the concentration indicated by “° Baume”. Degrees Baume is a measure of the specific gravity, and values in the 40’s are typical of these concentrated solutions.44 A concentration of 41° Baume equates to 29% SiO2 by weight. Note that the density is high (1.38 g/mL for 41° Baume), so volume measurements should take this into account. Maybe eventually, some of the hobby supplement manufacturers will provide a supplement.

Safety note: Sodium Silicate solution is very basic (high pH). In fact, the pH can be substantially higher than limewater, so it is very corrosive to tissue and to metal devices. Be careful to not spill it on yourself, wear some eye protection, and if you spill it on something metal, wash it. In all cases, extensive washing with water is recommended in case of spills or exposure.

Based on my dosing experience, aquarists are probably safe dosing the equivalent of 17 uM (1 ppm SiO2) once every 1-2 weeks. That is based on the fact that my tank used that much in less than 4 days without having any sort of “bad” reaction. Of course, there’s nothing wrong with starting at a tenth of that and ramping up. And, of course, if you do get too much in the way of diatoms, just back off on the dosing. I presume that all that I added to my tank went into various organisms that us it (sponges, diatoms, etc), but perhaps I have more sponges than other aquarists, and diatoms consequently may be more of a concern in some tanks than in mine.

I’d also advise occasionally checking the soluble silica concentration in the water, in case the demand in your tank is substantially less than mine. If the concentration started to rise above 50 uM (3 ppm SiO2), even in the absence of diatoms, I’d probably reduce the dose rate because that is close to the maximum concentration that surface seawater ever attains.

Here’s how to determine dosing amounts. I’ll assume that you want 17 uM (1 ppm SiO2) dosing, and you can scale from there. If the concentration of the supplement is 29% silica by weight (41° Baume), then it is 290,000 ppm silica. To get to 1 ppm silica, you then need to dilute by 290,000 fold. If you add 1.3 grams of this supplement (0.96 mL) to a tank with 100 gallons (378,500 mL), then the final concentration will be about 17 uM (1 ppm SiO2). I’d disperse the concentrated silicate solution into some fresh water before adding it to the tank, and then add it to a high flow area. Because the pH is high, you likely will see some cloudiness that is mostly magnesium hydroxide. The magnesium hydroxide will dissolve without a problem, but to be safe, add the supplement in a high flow area.
 

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