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DIY Cichlid Buffer Chemical Question


BlakeyBoyR

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Hey guys, I was just reading the chemical ingredients for the cichlid buffer in the FAQ section and it notes the following ingredients:

Sodium bicarbonate (NaHCO3) - baking soda

Potassium chloride (KCl) - (a salt substitute)

Magnesium sulphate (MgSO4) - Epsom salts

calcium chloride (CaCl2) - (a pool water hardener)

Now baking soda and epsom salts are a no brainer, so my questions are about the other two.

Firstly, is calcium chloride something I can just walk into a hardware or pool store and expect them to have? Or should I anticipate some difficulty getting it?

And secondy, apparently Potassium Chloride is a lung and skin irritant. Given that I have ashtma Id rather avoid using it so, as its a salt substitute, could I just use normal salt instead? Where would you even get Potassium Chloride anyway?

Cheers for any advice you can give me thumb.gif

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My 2 cents

calcium chloride (CaCl2) - (a pool water hardener) you can get at any pool shop and even some large woolworths will carry it. You wont have any trouble getting this.

Potassium chloride (KCl) - (a salt substitute) Can we purchaced at Woolworths or any good health shop.

When mixing any chemicals you should always use safty gear. Go to bunnings and get some disposable face masks, and some disposable glove this will rid you of your Alergy Problems.

Anthonyn

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Yeah, I anticipated some trouble getting my hands on that stuff. Surely if we cant get the Potassium chloride there'd have to be a substitute that would do the same job wouldnt there? Damn I wish Id paid more attention in science class at school blink.gif

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Potassium chloride and sodium chloride (normal salt) will not have the same effect. Yes, they are both salts but as soon as they come in contact with the water they dissolve into K+ and Na+ ions. Those ions will have different effects on the hardness and pH of the water. The K+ occurs naturally in African lakes and it is that characteristic that you are trying to copy - not the existence of dissolved salts generally.

So the answer is no.

KCl is a chrystalline solid and is very inert. If you use gloves and a mask and handle the chemicals carefully you shouldn't face any problems at all when making a batch up. Just be sensible and methodical and you will be OK.

Regards

David

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Hmm ... sensible? ... methodical? Maybe I should just BUY some buffer LOL.gif

Naaa but seriously, could you just remove the potassium from the formula and use the buffer anyway? Obviously it wouldnt buffer hardness anymore but it would still do PH right?

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Hey Guys, Potassium chloride (KCl) Can be ordered in by your local chemist but at $20 for 500g its not very cheap dry.gif Which is why i havn't used it for awhile now blush.gif With no obvious problems either wink.gif Lucky for me i have found a source that will enable me to buy 5kg's for under $30 tongue.gif

Cheers

Stuart

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KCl, whats the dramas.

step 1 go to wearever you get your food from...

step 2 go to were the table salt is stashed

step 3 grab a container of diet salt, read the label it has KCl, and NaCl 50:50

step 4 buy it...

when you mis up the buffer i find that you should use slightly warm water, and only add one item at a time and dissolve it, then add th enext thing, or it is possible for it to form a solid lump on the bottom that kinda sets...

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No magic secret laugh.gif I just happen to know someone who can access it in 25kg bags. If you lived here in Melb i could put you onto him but as you live in Syd i dont think he will want to post any sort of white substance in the mail LOL.gif so there's no point tongue.giftongue.gif

Cheers

Stuart

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