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@jongalong yes, it's all about the ratios. I actually used teaspoons instead of tablespoons. Here was the summary I came up with. Note the first three involve distilling into a solution, then mixing some of that into the tank. The last two I didn't do the distillation first (just mixed the correct amount for my 6.5 gallon with an arbitrary amount of tank water, then poured it back in).

Calcium:
Mix 3 tsp CaCl2 with 1 cup water. Dose 1 tsp of this solution per gallon.

Magnesium:
1 tsp MgSO4 with 2 cups water, dose 1 tsp of this solution per gallon.

Potassium:
Dose 1/8 tsp of KCl per 10 gallons of water.

Bicarbonate:
Dose 1 tsp baking soda per 10 gallons water.

Please double check the calculations, but I hope this makes it a bit simpler :) I think I still did some tweaking at each level to get the exact hardness I wanted. Went through quite a few vials of tests that night!
 

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Discussion Starter · #42 ·
I planned on mixing together all the chemicals in a single jar, so next time the measurements would be easier. Never got around to it though, as I only needed to raise the hardness that first time.
If you mix the chemicals, you may get a white precipitate (solid particles) that is essentially useless or impossible to work with or measure or go into solution.

[I suspect that water-hardening commercial products are formulated for ease of use by hobbyists, and why SeaChem's 'Equilibrium' is all sulfate salts. The vendors have mixed Ca, Mg, K, etc salts that won't precipitate "on the shelf." I actually spoke with SeaChem's sales representatives (very nice people) decades ago about making an Equilibrium-like product with less sulfates, but nothing came of it.]

That said, I'm glad that you got what you wanted. Very good....
 

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If you mix the chemicals, you may get a white precipitate (solid particles) that is essentially useless or impossible to work with or measure or go into solution.
Should have known it wouldn't be that simple ;) I will keep them separate then, easy enough to measure each one out given how infrequently I have to use them. Thanks for the heads up!
 

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@jongalong yes, it's all about the ratios. I actually used teaspoons instead of tablespoons. Here was the summary I came up with. Note the first three involve distilling into a solution, then mixing some of that into the tank. The last two I didn't do the distillation first (just mixed the correct amount for my 6.5 gallon with an arbitrary amount of tank water, then poured it back in).

Calcium:
Mix 3 tsp CaCl2 with 1 cup water. Dose 1 tsp of this solution per gallon.

Magnesium:
1 tsp MgSO4 with 2 cups water, dose 1 tsp of this solution per gallon.

Potassium:
Dose 1/8 tsp of KCl per 10 gallons of water.

Bicarbonate:
Dose 1 tsp baking soda per 10 gallons water.

Please double check the calculations, but I hope this makes it a bit simpler :) I think I still did some tweaking at each level to get the exact hardness I wanted. Went through quite a few vials of tests that night!
Awesome! Thank you!

I ended up mixing up two solutions of MgCl and CaCl, and using the procedure outlined to get a Mg/Ca GH bump, and it worked like.a charm. I have syringes around from a medical kit, and did it all in ml, also cause the math is easier!

I am going to do the same thing with bicarb to adjust the KH into the right range, and I think I ended up guessing at the KCl amount based on page 87 as well, and ended up with very close to what you did.

Thanks for sharing!

I ended up with 2 teaspoons of each of MgCl and CaCl in some old plastic ice cream containers (about 500ml each), then my recipe is 7ml of the MgCl and 10ml of the CaCl per 2000ml of tap water results in a GH of 9, most of which comes from the CaCl.

My tanks are all small 2.3 gallon specimens, and I'm excited to see how this changes my plant growth.

Anyway - thanks for sharing your notes!
 

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Compared to calcium sulphate is calcium chloride more soluble?

I have been using calcium sulphate dihydate in preparing my Gh booster along with Epsom
Salt and potassium sulphate

the solubility of calcium sulphate is very bad.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

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Discussion Starter · #48 ·
Calcium chloride (CaCl2) is very soluble. It goes into solution immediately, plus it will not change pH. CaSO4 (Calcium sulfate) is probably soluble as well.

CaCO3 (calcium carbonate) the component of shells, coral, and limestone is the compound that is not very soluble. And it will raise pH.

Your recipe using only sulfate salts of Ca, Mg, and K is not a good idea. You are adding too much sulfate. Sulfates build up in the water and percolate into substrate. Anaerobic bacteria in the substrate will convert sultates to the highly toxic gas H2S (my book, p. 67). H2S will kill/inhibit root growth and bottom-dwelling fish. Sulfates can cause major problems in substrates containing potting soil underlayers or even gravel substrates with anaerobic pockets of debris.

That is why I recommend CaCl2. The other compounds (e.g., MgSO4) are used in lesser amounts, so the minor sulfate addition is not as problematic.

A mesh bag of finely crushed coral or oyster grit in the filter would be my second choice.
 

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Discussion Starter · #50 ·
I don't have any rules on this. Amount needed will depend on plant growth, water changes, amount of fish food, etc. That said, there's lots of leeway.

I would add it once as I described to "harden up" softwater--along with Ca and Mg-- or whenever you see deficiency symptoms.
 

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Discussion Starter · #52 ·
I wouldn't add any more baking soda. You don't want to inhibit plant growth with excess sodium--unnecessarily. Your KH and pH are acceptable.
 

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First post here. While I wait for my dry start to develop I have purchased some items to harden my water as the gh is one and the kh is 11. Following the recipe discussed here and the information on page 87 of the Walsted method I have some salt substitute made by Windsor. Ingredients consist of potassium chloride,calcium silicate,magnesium carbonate,sugar and finally potassium iodide.
 

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Thank you Gadget Girl for the link.I am hoping Ms.Walstad will chime in and offer some guidance. If this product isn’t up to snuff I am certainly going to go with your recommendation. 😀
 

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Thank you Gadget Girl for the link.I am hoping Ms.Walstad will chime in and offer some guidance. If this product isn't up to snuff I am certainly going to go with your recommendation.
Actually that one does have some magnesium carbonate in it, but I can't imagine that being detrimental. There are some pure forms on Amazon.
 
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