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Dosing 2 part equally?

Discussion in 'Newbies Corner' started by 6check, Jan 8, 2017.

  1. 6check

    6check Copepod

    I've been dosing BRS 2 part and currently I'm dosing equal parts of both. 1 part I dose over night and the other over the day. My alk has been dropping so I adjusted it and to increased the dose to keep it steady. However, my cal is way high. Mag is at 1350, alk 8.1 and cal 561. My tank is 50gal and I'm dosing 50ml of each, BRS table says I should be dosing 15ml at the most and more like 10ml. Which means I'm dosing around 5x more than I should be. Please be aware my apex DOS was losing siphon while I was trying to dial this in, I'm still dealing with them to resolve this. So I've been testing Alk every day to watch the levels.

    My question is should I dose the same amount of each? Or can one of them be dosed more?

    Does mag need to be at 1400 to 'lock' the values in? This was the advice on another thread here.
  2. aquarius

    aquarius Copepod

    IME my calcium dose was always less than my alk dose. Somewhere around 1/2 but to be honest it all depends on how strong you mix your solution. You could mix your solution so that you dose equal parts of each I never bothered to do so however, just found my sweet spot and left it alone. Now I use a CaRx and find it much easier to use and would never go back to dosing. Your high ca level won't cause any issues just stop dosing if you want it to come down then dial it in once it's down to the level you want it. My Ca has been around 800 for several months now and I've seen no ill effects on any of my corals or fish.
  3. aquarius

    aquarius Copepod

    Also low mag levels can cause you to chase ca and alk levels but they will never stabilize however as long as your mag is at least nsw levels around 1200 or more you will be fine. Excessive mag levels can be detrimental and cause mag poisoning. I've seen mag levels around 2000 wipe out an entire tank, stability is your primary goal here don't waste your time and stress yourself and your corals out chasing a magic number that doesn't really exist. Each tank is different and parameters for my tank may not work for yours and vice versa again stability is the primary key to success.
  4. asn-naso

    asn-naso Tuna M.A.S.C Club Member

    I dose 2-3X more alk, then I do calc. I use baking soda, and driveway heat.
    6check likes this.
  5. jda123

    jda123 Tuna M.A.S.C Club Member

    It depends on what you keep. Different organisms that require both will use it at different rates.
  6. SynDen

    SynDen Shark Staff Member M.A.S.C Club Member M.A.S.C. B.O.D. M.A.S.C President M.A.S.C Webmaster

    +1 Generally these stay in balanced proportions with each other, but can change overtime based on growth and needs of the organisms you keep in the tank. Other micro nutrients, in the saltwater can also affect the uptake of calcium by the corals as well. For example. I currently have a potassium shortage in my tank at home and as a result the corals have stopped up-taking the calcium at the same rate they were, and as a result my CA level have skyrocketed, while my alk has remained high but within reason. My solution is to stop dosing kalk for a time and get my potassium levels up before I restart it.
    So for you I would just adjust your 2-part dosing to find the right balance. You will need to make adjustments and then test a few time over the next few weeks or so to see if you need to make further adjustments. Move slowly though and test frequently until you find your new balance.
  7. 6check

    6check Copepod

    Thanks for all the replies

    Is it reasonable to say Ca and Alk are inversely proportionate? As Ca rises Alk will fall?

    Synden - are you suggesting I dose them in equal amounts?

    Now I wonder what my potassium levels are and if that is effecting other things.

    I'm testing Alk every day to watch the levels.
  8. 6check

    6check Copepod

    Understood, but having excess Ca while dosing seems like a waste of material. I read somewhere that 2 part should always be dosed equally since they are used proportionately so that's what I was shooting for. Sounds like that may not be true. Thoughts?

    I don't want my Alk to drop (I've always struggled with low Alk, it was the reason I moved away from Kalk to 2 part) but the high levels of Ca could be holding my Alk down, if they are indeed dependant on each other. I think I am going to drop my Ca dose and watch the alk levels.
  9. SynDen

    SynDen Shark Staff Member M.A.S.C Club Member M.A.S.C. B.O.D. M.A.S.C President M.A.S.C Webmaster

    yes they are generally inverse proportions, and no, dont continue dosing in equal amounts. Adjust either up or down as needed. Go slow and test in between each change until you are satisfied with the level it is holding at. My potassium example was just to illustrate that there is quite a few factors in the tank that can affect the amount of uptake, but at this point you should only be concerned with the big three(CA, ALK, MAG). No need to monitor potassium or other micro nutrients unless you have a reason to believe something else is wrong.
    6check likes this.
  10. Bdk1786

    Bdk1786 Amphipod

    When I first started dosing BRS 2 part, I used their initial guidelines from the packaging. [TABLE]
    Predominately LPS and soft corals A few hard SPS corals or clams Numerous full sized SPS
    colonies and clams
    [TD="width: 30%"].1 mL/gallon[/TD]
    [TD="width: 30%"].2 mL/gallon[/TD]
    [TD="width: 30%"].3 mL/gallon[/TD]

    It will take a little bit to find the sweet spot for your tank, but you will start out doing in equal parts, then adjust from there. My Alk does is slightly higher than my Ca when it was all said and done. Off the top of my head, I think my 70gal uses ~30ml Alk a day and ~28ml Ca. That keeps my tank at around Ca: 440 & Alk: 8.4

    Just my experiences. The more SPS I bring in, the more I'll have to tweak, but not significantly by any means.
  11. jda123

    jda123 Tuna M.A.S.C Club Member

    Have you read Dr. Randy Holmes-Farley's two part papers? If not, I highly suggest them.
    6check likes this.
  12. Kayvon

    Kayvon Copepod

    Hey all,

    Not to hijack the thread or anything, but I was wondering what test kits yall use. I use the Red Sea foundation kit, but I have a hard time telling if/when the colors change.
  13. SynDen

    SynDen Shark Staff Member M.A.S.C Club Member M.A.S.C. B.O.D. M.A.S.C President M.A.S.C Webmaster

    I use Red sea's as well, but have a similar issue on some of their tests. The industry standard, and used widely by public aquariums are Salifert tests though.
  14. 6check

    6check Copepod

    Jda, yes I did. He's a wealth of info!
  15. 6check

    6check Copepod

    Bdk, etc all,
    If I use the BRS guidelines I should be dosing way less. So I think it could be that the high CA is pushing down my ALK so I end up doing more than I need to to keep the alk up. I'm going to drop off my Ca dose and watch the alk closely.

    I have 5 small sps in the tank so I'd say I have a low to medium load.

    I use Hana and red sea tests. I like the simplicity of the hana, no colors to interpret. Though I prefer the red sea boxes for storage. I moved my hana alk and phosphates to the red sea box....now if I could lay my hands on a red sea calcium box I'd be in testing heaven!

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