Trident readings way off

DanH86

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UK trident user here, if that makes any difference.

Since day 1 the trident has been way off for Alk - reading 9.6 when my titration kit consistently says 8.2. A calibration didn’t change anything. I figured the manual titration was wrong and allowed the trident to control dosing. When the reagent A was changed, the reading dropped to 9.0 so I calibrated again and it stayed at 9.0. Again, I left it, figuring trident must be right.

Yesterday I had to change reagents b and c, and now they are both way off. Again, calibration hasn’t fixed anything. Red Sea Titration tests say calc 420, mag 1320 and trident says calc 330 and mag 1462.

I'm at a loss. I keep blasting through calibration fluid trying to get a reading that matches my manual titration, but can’t. I’m now out of calibration fluid.

As of right now my manual tests (Red Sea pro) are:
alk 7.56
calc 420
mag 1320

trident:
alk 9.2
Calc 332
mag 1462

Im tempted to calibrate to my tank water manual readings but this kinda defeats the point of spending big bucks on an automated tester and dosing combo!

Help!
 

tankstudy

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Currently have the same issue as well. However, I do see that even with the number change, the trident is precise but just not accurate. I plan to calibrate my trident again today to see if things improve.
 
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DanH86

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Hopefully someone has some tips on getting the best readings - placement of trident, location of sample line etc.
 

harley32907

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I don't know if this helps, I have found lose hoses ( drips inside) the Trident. Watch and see if it's filling up ( take the shield off) I have found debris in the tubes. There's a manifold it's black, star shape, found debris in it. Hopefully this helps.
 

Cabinetman

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What’s the cure if it does pic up a piece of dirt. Is there a way to flush things out without tearing it apart? I’m really surprised there isn’t some sort of filter on the intake. I may add a small sponge filter to mine
 

saf1

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Next time you calibrate, take a little bit of the calibration fluid and test using your Red Sea kits. Do it immediately as the calibration fluid degrades after opening.
Agree w/ suggestions from @Scurvy

The suggestion on using the left over calibration fluid for checking manual test kits is a great idea. The fluid lasts about 8 hours after opening as noted due to the fall off. I pull a water sample before calibration and once it is completed I'll compare the trident to a manual test of ALK with my hanna kit. Usually within both parties respected margin of error.

On the sample line. I had mine lower and it did get clogged up due to a marine pure type block (brightwell's equivalent) that was breaking a part. I wasn't sure what the issue was and Neptune support asked me to remove the sample draw line, take a small syringe or clean blow through it. Cleared it up and now I have it as noted above a inch or two above the bottom of my sump.

Another issue I had is that I was dosing into the same area that the Trident sample line was in. So if you are dosing make sure the Trident sample line is in a different location away or the dosing program doesn't not align with the trident test window.
 
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DanH86

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Thanks for all the suggestions.

the sample line is in the first sump chamber - where the drain pipes are. The dosers go into the same chamber as the skimmer sits in so no issues there.
the sample line is about 1 inch from bottom, so I’ll raise it.

I’ll take a look at the pipe and see if debris has gotten in.

like the suggestion about checking Red Sea kits against the calibration fluid, will do that!
 
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DanH86

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The results are in....

brand new trident calibration solution says it is:
8.50 dkh
410 calc
1300 mag

brand new Red Sea pro test kit says the above solution is:
7.84 dkh
390 calc
1300 mag

shall I calibrate the trident to its own solution values or my measured values?
 

TheHarold

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The results are in....

brand new trident calibration solution says it is:
8.50 dkh
410 calc
1300 mag

brand new Red Sea pro test kit says the above solution is:
7.84 dkh
390 calc
1300 mag

shall I calibrate the trident to its own solution values or my measured values?

The calibration fluid would be the one to believe, as each batch is verified using precision commercial machinery.

The Red Sea pro test is hobbyist level.

If maintaining the Red Sea readings has worked for your tank, I suppose you could enter those. But the calibration fluid data would be the more reliable source of information.
 
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DanH86

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Ok thanks. Trident is now calibrating to those values.

Tank has always looked great on numbers that I thought were spot on, but are really bad when measured on the trident system! I guess I’ll see what the latest calibration says the tank water is...I believe it to be 420 calc whereas trident says 330...

if this calibration changes the readings then it would seem I have major drift in my trident as this is its fourth calibration in 2 months. I keep opening my new boxes of reagent just to use the calibration solution which is getting annoying!
 

Scurvy

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the sample line is in the first sump chamber -
Believe it or not that was where I first had mine placed and ran into the most random readings. I wasn’t expecting trouble there but whether we see them or not there’s a lot of micro bubbles in the drain chamber. Try moving it and running a couple of tests in another location. I mentioned it took 3 tries for me to find the optimal placement and it would up being in a baffle area between my fuge and skimmer chamber. Good Luck.
 
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DanH86

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Thanks will try moving it.

something definitely wrong with the calc test - pre calibration it was 330, post calibration it is 480. Red Sea says 420..
 

rkpetersen

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I’m really surprised there isn’t some sort of filter on the intake. I may add a small sponge filter to mine

Don't do that! :)

I agree that the Trident probably should have been designed with some kind of replaceable filter. Especially given how narrow the intake line is, such that any tiny piece of detritus might jam in there and give the dreaded "TEST A FAIL" error message.

But the device is designed to be used with a specific amount/time of suction applied to the intake line, to draw up sample. This requires that the line be a specific length, not longer or shorter, and that the intake end of the line be at the approximate correct height, and that there is no partial obstruction. Any kind of filter on the end of the line might cause the device to be less accurate by drawing up a smaller sample.
 

rkpetersen

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The fluid lasts about 8 hours after opening as noted due to the fall off.

Technically there should be no change in any of the calibration solution parameters, including alk, if no evaporation occurs. During beta testing, the rationale for the 8 hour deadline was never explained.
 
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DanH86

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Update to this issue - the trident readings have kept varying and I‘ve also started to experience the issue that others have seen where calc readings skyrocket when reagent gets to 50%. Submitted a support ticket and Neptune got back to me almost immediately - apparently this is caused by older batches of reagent and should no longer be an issue in the new mixes..Unfortunately this means my 3 months remaining reagent is junk and I need to find some ‘new’ stuff which is seeming impossible.

Here’s the exact wording from Neptune:

This was an issue that we found happened towards the end of the reagent bottles in certain setup situations.

The newer formulation of reagents that is on the market now has eliminated this issue in our testing.

We would recommend that you swap out the reagents, but make sure you are getting the current blend by purchasing from a larger retailer, as the smaller stores do not turn over their stock as fast, and a few of them may still have the older reagents on the shelves.

Let us know in a month or so if you experience the same issue with the new reagents when you get down to a similar level.
 

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