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Which salt ????

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sharkbaitx2

Active member
Joined
Jan 25, 2004
Messages
38
Location
Federal Way, WA
Ok, now we're under the gun. My wife and I, after extensive poring over the Web and taking polls of catalogs and shop owners still can't decide upon which salt will be the one to use. One owner swears by Instant Ocean which he has used for years without problem, another location uses Tropic marine - again for years - again without problem! Yet "survey says" Forty Fathoms - Marine Mix is the only way to go. I'm beginning to think that I should be looking for a used car - it might be easier! I know that its important that metals be low and particles should be dry and of uniform size but what is the salt of choice with experienced reef keepers? Does it really depend on how you mix and the quality of the water used???
 

esmith

AQUAMANIAC
Joined
Oct 9, 2003
Messages
451
Location
Shoreline, WA
sharkbaitx2, I actually asked this same question a couple of months ago and got some great responses including a listing of the concentration of elements in each salt. This thread is gone now as this site changed, but I can tell you this...everyone tends to agree that Instand Ocean is the salt to use. It has the lowest tested levels of phosphate and nitrate, and the calcium, alkalinity, and ph fall right in line with what tank parameters should be (although you should test all pre-mixed water to assure that it matches as closely as possible you tank conditions, and the calcium might be a little low in the Instant Ocean).

Tropic Marin tested the highest for phosphates and nitrates, with phosphates nearly 1.0 ppm. I can speak from experience with this salt, as I bought it because the store said "this is the best salt, and we've used it for years", after using for a month my phosphate levels rose to nearly 1.25ppm and the algae grew at alarming rates. That is when I posted the same question you're asking and found all this info.

Sorry I don't remember the specs on the rest of the salts, but I am sure that either Mojoreef, MtnDewMan, or someone else has this info and can include it later. I have been back using the Instant Ocean and my tank and inhabitants are doing excellent.

HTH,

Eliyah
 

plumber_bob

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 22, 2004
Messages
207
Location
Federal Way
I've never had a problem with phosphates or nitrates in Tropic Marin salts. It has always kept my calcium around 390 and my alk around 3.7..... Never have seen or heard of a problem with this salt.
 

esmith

AQUAMANIAC
Joined
Oct 9, 2003
Messages
451
Location
Shoreline, WA
I will agree that it did keep my Ca and Alk really consistent, but once I tested for phosphates it was all over. It could have been a bad batch, but I have read some online testing that was done, as well as the ones posted here and TM has the highest levels of phosphates among the many salts on the market...and I am sure there must be some consistency if different people come up with the same results.

And for the price that this stuff sells for at the LFS, it's not worth it to me...$30 for a 50gallon bag.

JMO,

Eliyah
 

plumber_bob

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 22, 2004
Messages
207
Location
Federal Way
I'm trying to wonder why people don't buy the Kent salt over Instant Ocean because in reality Kent is a lot better no matter the myths you hear. Instant Ocean produces the salt then it is shipped to "KENT" where they actually add some extra elements to make the salt that much better. Guess Instant Ocean just has the name ;)
 

NaH2O

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 25, 2004
Messages
8,568
Aaah, the great debate. I believe this debate will go on indefinately....unless someone does a study that isn't funded by anyone in the "salt manufacturing" business. IMO, every salt will have pros and cons - it is knowing your cons, and dealing with them appropriately. Unfortunately, nothing will be as good as NSW. I at one time was going to use Marine Environment 2 Part, but due to an issue on another board, I will not. I think whatever you use, if your tank is thriving, then why change it? If you need to supplement, use a good quality supplement (i.e. analytical grade).

Anyone mix their dry salt in the bucket or bag to get a balanced mix? I'm sure some settling occurs and would need to be mixed for a balanced "scoop". Anyone test their make up water for alk or Ca?
 

esmith

AQUAMANIAC
Joined
Oct 9, 2003
Messages
451
Location
Shoreline, WA
I actually do mix up my salt a bit in the bucket before mixing with water, and I test both the Alk and Ca. I usually find that the calcium levels in IO are around 350-375, so I add a liquid supplement to help bring it up, and I also sometimes have to add a buffer to raise the Alk as well.

I agree with you Nikki that they all have their pro's and con's, but I have found the most consistency using the IO (although every manufacturer will indefinately at some point have a bad batch).

Eliyah
 
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