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Old 01/05/2008, 11:35 PM   #1
Billybeau1
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A General Guide to Salt Mixes

Here is a list of what I measured for the big three in a number of the salt mixes we use today. This is intended as a guideline and I, in no way, guarantee these figures. All I can say is they were all tested under the same conditions, with a number of different brand test kits, using the same methods for each test. I believe these numbers are reasonably what you can expect from these salts mixed at 35 ppt or 1.0264

A special thanks to Bertoni for putting it in nice form.


Calcium &nbsp&nbsp

Alkalinity&nbsp &nbsp

Magnesium

Aquatic Gardens

&nbsp&nbsp 430

&nbsp&nbsp 8

&nbsp&nbsp 1240

Brightwell Neomarine

&nbsp&nbsp 370

&nbsp&nbsp 11

&nbsp&nbsp 1140

CoraLife

&nbsp&nbsp 560

&nbsp&nbsp 9

&nbsp&nbsp 1380

Crystal Sea Marinemix&nbsp &nbsp

&nbsp&nbsp 340

&nbsp&nbsp 9

&nbsp&nbsp 1050

Crystal Sea Marinemix Bio-Assay&nbsp &nbsp

&nbsp&nbsp 340

&nbsp&nbsp 9

&nbsp&nbsp 1050

D-D H2Ocean&nbsp &nbsp

&nbsp&nbsp 450

&nbsp&nbsp 10

&nbsp&nbsp 1380

Instant Ocean (new)&nbsp &nbsp

&nbsp&nbsp 400

&nbsp&nbsp 11

&nbsp&nbsp 1350

Kent&nbsp &nbsp

&nbsp&nbsp 540

&nbsp&nbsp 11

&nbsp&nbsp 1200

Marine Environment

&nbsp&nbsp 480

&nbsp&nbsp 7.5

&nbsp&nbsp 1450

Oceanic

&nbsp&nbsp 580

&nbsp&nbsp 8.5

&nbsp&nbsp 1650

OceanPure

&nbsp&nbsp 510

&nbsp&nbsp 10

&nbsp&nbsp 1320

Red Sea

&nbsp&nbsp 400

&nbsp&nbsp 8

&nbsp&nbsp 1300

Red Sea Coral Pro

&nbsp&nbsp 490

&nbsp&nbsp 7

&nbsp&nbsp 1300

Reef Crystals (new)

&nbsp&nbsp 490

&nbsp&nbsp 13

&nbsp&nbsp 1440

Reefer's Best

&nbsp&nbsp 420

&nbsp&nbsp 11

&nbsp&nbsp 1200

SeaChem Marine Salt

&nbsp&nbsp 500

&nbsp&nbsp 10

&nbsp&nbsp 1400

SeaChem Reef Salt

&nbsp&nbsp 540

&nbsp&nbsp 10

&nbsp&nbsp 1450

Tropic Marin

&nbsp&nbsp 375

&nbsp&nbsp 10

&nbsp&nbsp 1230

Tropic Marin Pro Reef

&nbsp&nbsp 450

&nbsp&nbsp 8.5

&nbsp&nbsp 1380

Tunze Reef Salt

&nbsp&nbsp 420

&nbsp&nbsp 9.5

&nbsp&nbsp 1350





Last edited by bertoni; 09/02/2009 at 09:44 PM.
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Old 01/06/2008, 06:35 AM   #2
Randy Holmes-Farley
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Nice work.


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Old 01/06/2008, 01:49 PM   #3
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very cool, interesting to see these results.


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Old 01/06/2008, 10:05 PM   #4
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Thanks Randy. I spent a lot of time insuring accuracy.

My only intention is to give the aquarist a general idea of what to expect from these different salt mixes. Very general.


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Old 01/07/2008, 05:35 PM   #5
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I can confirm IO and RC figures even though they are manufactured in France over here.
Luck


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Old 01/07/2008, 07:14 PM   #6
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Thanks Dan, for reporting across the big lake.


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Old 01/07/2008, 11:29 PM   #7
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Thanks for all the work... was just contemplating switching salts.. it seems it's time to use something other than IO.


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Old 01/08/2008, 12:20 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally posted by luxolex
Thanks for all the work... was just contemplating switching salts.. it seems it's time to use something other than IO.
Don't write off IO just because of 3 numbers. It is very consistent with the other things we don't test for and is still one of the most used salt mixes around the world. It just needs a little supplementing to be good for reef tanks which many reefers don't seem to mind doing. But there is nothing wrong with trying other brands IMO.


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Old 01/09/2008, 10:39 AM   #9
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Would there be any problems to be concerned about in using Oceanic if you do not have a "reef"....yet?


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Old 01/09/2008, 10:44 AM   #10
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For a fish only? They are probably less sensitive to the mix not matching NSW.


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Old 01/09/2008, 10:51 AM   #11
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Being a fish only, you probably don't want to be at 1.0264 anyway.

I keep my FO at 1.022 - 1.023 and at those levels the calcium and magnesium levels will be lower.

The only thing you may want to keep an eye on is your alkalinity. A little baking soda will keep that in check.


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Old 01/09/2008, 11:02 AM   #12
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Any info on Korallen-Zucht, Aqua-Craft, or Coralife Scientific Grade?


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Old 01/09/2008, 11:25 AM   #13
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The Coralife is the scientific grade. It's the only one they make that I am aware of. I haven't tested the other two yet.

I have a few more on my list.


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Old 01/10/2008, 08:36 PM   #14
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Billybeau1: I have two questions:

1. Are there any negatives to changing salt mixes?
2. Does baking soda really bring down alkalinity? (this would be good to know in the future since I'm supplementing)

Thanks!


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Old 01/10/2008, 11:01 PM   #15
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Kasey, I don't see any problem as long as its done slowly. Say 20 % water changes with the new salt and see how the tank reacts. And of course you'll want to monitor calcium and alkalinity initially to determine what changes the new salt mix made on your tank.

Baking soda raises alkalinity. It is what many of us use to supplement alkalinity loss between water changes. It may temporarily lower pH unless it is baked first. If baked, it will raise pH and caution should be used not to raise pH more that .2 per dose.

I use good old Arm & Hammer.


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Old 01/11/2008, 10:21 AM   #16
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I've used RC for the last few years with great results, but a few months ago I ordered three buckets and since using them I noticed my Mg was quite low... I tested the new water with a salifert kit and got a reading of 1100. A fellow reefer/LFS employee told me there had been a few complaints from other users about the Mg levels... anyone else notice this?


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Old 01/11/2008, 10:55 AM   #17
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There are two big threads in the chem forum discussing this. I hope we can keep these discussions there.


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Old 01/11/2008, 05:49 PM   #18
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I like those seachem reef salt numbers


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Old 01/11/2008, 10:44 PM   #19
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Yes, if they solved their past Borate issues (which I believe I read somewhere they did), this could be a good salt for medium to heavily stocked tanks. Reefers that have been using it awhile are reporting good results.


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Old 01/12/2008, 06:00 AM   #20
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Any information or opinions on Red Sea Coral Pro salt?


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Old 01/12/2008, 06:15 AM   #21
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Yes, if they solved their past Borate issues (which I believe I read somewhere they did),

Yes, it is apparently now somewhat over NSW, but not like it used to be.


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Old 01/12/2008, 10:24 AM   #22
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Quote:
Originally posted by jh2pizza
Any information or opinions on Red Sea Coral Pro salt?
I'm testing that next week along with Oceanpure and Seachem Marine Salt. Should have the results posted by next weekend.


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Old 01/13/2008, 12:49 AM   #23
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Quote:
Originally posted by Billybeau1
Kasey, I don't see any problem as long as its done slowly. Say 20 % water changes with the new salt and see how the tank reacts. And of course you'll want to monitor calcium and alkalinity initially to determine what changes the new salt mix made on your tank.
Just to add to this...

I have seen a lot of people complain that the new salt they are using is causing issues. The brand names change, but the one constant seems to be that it is a salt that they were not using prior. It seems that if you change salt too quickly, there can be some shock to the system. This is not always the case, but better safe than sorry.

Like other things in this hobby, slow is better. I would slowly introduce the new salt into the saltwater you are mixing up. For instance you could use 25% new salt and 75% old. Then the next water change do 50/50, then 75/25, then finally using 100% new salt. The whole time keeping to your regular water change schedule. You could slow this down even further if you have old salt to use up like I did when I switched from Oceanic to RC.


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Old 01/13/2008, 01:44 AM   #24
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Well, in my experience, although there are variations of the big three, I doubt there is much difference in the other minor trace elements in most of the commercial salt mixes I have tested.

I have not seen any major brands being yanked off the market because they killed fish or corals.

I sincerely believe that most of the synthetic salt mixes sold today are adequate enough to maintain marine life.

Some just need a little more supplementing than others.

I believe it has been well documented what the proper parameters of a successful reef should be.

It doesn't surprise me that some reefers find their tanks flourish with one type of salt and not others.

Let's just be glad we have a good selection of quality salt mixes to choose from.

I always say, if it looks good, it probably is good. Experienced reefers can take one look at their tanks inhabitants and tell how their water chemistry is. They can see when something is a miss.

It's kinda like when your dog or cat is a little under the weather.

You can see it. Even though they can't talk to you, you can see it.

An experienced reefer knows when something is not right.

When is the last time you got up real close to your tank and really stared in, looking at all of the fine details of your livestock. Looking at every detail of every coral and every scale on every fish. And looked at their eyes up close.

Its pretty amazing what you can see up close that you take for granted looking from across the room

Sheesh....... off the soap box now....... time for bed


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Old 01/13/2008, 07:26 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally posted by Randy Holmes-Farley
Yes, if they solved their past Borate issues (which I believe I read somewhere they did),

Yes, it is apparently now somewhat over NSW, but not like it used to be.



Seachem now lists the boron level in their Reef Salt at 16 PPM and my water usually tests at about 12-13 PPM between water changes.

Here is the Seachem Composition table on their Reef Salt:


Ion Concentration (ppm) Ion Concentration (ppm)


Chloride 19336 Sodium 10752
Sulfate 2657 Magnesium 1317
Potassium 421 Calcium 442
Carbonate/
Bicarbonate 142 Strontium 9.5
Boron 16 Bromide 64
Iodide 0.060 Lithium 0.3
Silicon < 0.1 Iron 0.0098
Copper 0.0003 Nickel < 0.015
Zinc 0.0107 Manganese 0.0023
Molybdenum 0.0098 Cobalt 0.0004
Vanadium < 0.015 Selenium < 0.019
Rubidium 0.118 Barium < 0.04


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