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Old man with an aquarium
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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
So I was thinking it would be nice to have a list of alternative additives, what it does, and what we can use it for as a reference.

I would like to start things off with a nice article I found by Randy Holmes - Homemade Two-Part Calcium And Alkalinity Additive System http://www.advancedaquarist.com/2004/4/chemistry

made with Baking Soda, Epson Salt and Dowflake 77-80% Calcium Chloride found at Home Depot.
 

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I dont have any new alternatives, however I can second the article posted above, as I procured all the items in that article and have been dosing my 125 fowlr + 20 frag tank with it for the last 5 months with no ill effects, and once you get the amounts you need it keeps all my levels in check very nicely. B-Ionic gets very expensive very quickly....
 

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Old man with an aquarium
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I would like to keep things going and provide another one. Distilled white vinegar. I know some prefer vodka but vinegar is much cheaper.

Distilled White Vinegar, its a pH reducer and carbon source.

Theoretically also a nitrate & phosphate reducer, possibly enhance coral coloration, reduce cyanobacterial growth as well as reduces dissolved and suspended organics when used in conjunction with a skimmer.

A nice article by Cliff Badcock and Dr. Randy Holmes Farley covers the subject, Vinegar Dosing Methodology for the Marine Aquarium http://reefkeeping.com/joomla/index.php/current-issue/article/116-vinegar-dosing-methodology-for-the-marine-aquarium
 

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Aquatic Philosopher
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Mrs Wages Picking Lime: Kalkwasser. Calcium Hydroxide. All the additive you need and most grocery stores sell it.

Raises pH, adds Ca and with its reaction with carbon dioxide (hey it reduces that too) it will add "alkalinity". The best part: unlike two-part, it does not add sodium or chloride to your tank!

Ca(OH)<sub>2</sub> + CO<sub>2</sub> → CaCO<sub>3</sub> + H<sub>2</sub>O
 

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Old man with an aquarium
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Debatable benefits but still an costly additive with a drug store alternative.

Lugol's solution: Iodine. Can be found at pharmacy store (However, you may need a prescription in some states).

Iodide ions are considered to be necessary for calcification in stony corals, general health of soft corals, and molting in crustaceans. Also, makes a good antiseptic and may also be used as a "dip" to cleanse wounds in coral tissues and eliminate certain disease.

As with all additives too much can be toxic! so be careful.
 

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Mrs Wages Picking Lime: Kalkwasser. Calcium Hydroxide. All the additive you need and most grocery stores sell it.

Raises pH, adds Ca and with its reaction with carbon dioxide (hey it reduces that too) it will add "alkalinity". The best part: unlike two-part, it does not add sodium or chloride to your tank!

Ca(OH)<sub>2</sub> + CO<sub>2</sub> → CaCO<sub>3</sub> + H<sub>2</sub>O
from what ive read about kalkwasser, when you mix it theres solids that settle out that you shouldnt dose. When buying pickling lime im assuming theres no precipitate and you can just dose it straight?

I was going to get two dosing containers and just assumed id do two part. I could use the lime in one and have magnesium or something else in the other. my last tank was fowlr so I dont have any experience with dosing yet but I plan on an sps tank this time
 

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Aquatic Philosopher
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from what ive read about kalkwasser, when you mix it theres solids that settle out that you shouldnt dose. When buying pickling lime im assuming theres no precipitate and you can just dose it straight?

I was going to get two dosing containers and just assumed id do two part. I could use the lime in one and have magnesium or something else in the other. my last tank was fowlr so I dont have any experience with dosing yet but I plan on an sps tank this time

Kalkwasser mix and pickling lime are identical. There is no significant difference. Both could have additional Kalk that if you add more Kalk than the water can hold, it will settle out. If you keep it relatively air-tight, you can remix and dissolve some of that material again.
 

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Old man with an aquarium
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188 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Randy is just the best, here is another one …Magnesium Supplements

Epson Salt (USP grade magnesium sulfate heptahydrate) found at local drug stores (My Costco sales a big box for cheap) and Mag Flake (magnesium chloride) found at local hardware store.

Here is the link to another great article http://www.reefkeeping.com/issues/2006-07/rhf/#21 on the subject.
 

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yep, those are good ones. i did not see this thread.

i used to use all kinds of pool additives to the tank. i used to use alk up, that was located at Lowe's in the pool section. they no longer carry it. :(

there is also the mix your own salt. i did that for a while and i may go back to that.

G~
 

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Hogfish
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yep, those are good ones. i did not see this thread.

i used to use all kinds of pool additives to the tank. i used to use alk up, that was located at Lowe's in the pool section. they no longer carry it. :(

there is also the mix your own salt. i did that for a while and i may go back to that.

G~
Hey G, what’s this mix your own salt recipe?
 
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