Setting up Precision Marine KR620 Kalk reactor

Discussion in 'Filters, Pumps, etc..' started by zesty, Sep 10, 2014.

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  1. zesty

    zesty Sailfin Tang

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    So, from my local reef forum, I found a used Precision Marine KR620 Kalk reactor, KR for short. The guy was moving and tearing down his tank. Compared to the new price, I paid more than 50% less, so I think I got a pretty good deal.

    Precision Marine KR620

    The biggest factor in setting this up was my usage of Alk & CA. So I monitored my usage for a couple weeks. I figured out that my Alk/CA were depleting pretty quickly, but nothing drastically bad. I tend to collect corals... so I knew this day would come. Before this reactor, I was dosing BRS 2-part and it didn't take long to see that if I waited too long in-between dosing, especially CA, it would require quite a bit of CA to get up to the levels I wanted.

    So, my plan was to wait for my Apex install. Which I am getting electrical run to my sump room tomorrow and then onto mounting my apex. So, I hope to work this Apex install in this weekend, I will need to take a crash course in Apex setup. I have a guy from the local reef forum that said he would help me out. So, this is my shameless plug, find a local forum and become a participating member, it's something that has helped me in so many ways! Plus I've met a bunch of great people.

    However, with a little bit of dinos still left in my tank, I wanted to hook up the Kalk reactor early to raise and keep my PH consistent. Plus, this allowed me to focus on just getting the reactor hooked up and then that's one less thing to do when installing my apex.

    Ok, enough talking, let's get down to business.

    The instructions are kinda vague, but they get the job done. My biggest concern is the solution strength and what pump to push the kalkwasser with. The instructions say to use 2 cups for the KR, I used 1-1/2 cups to be on the safe side.

    You also can use your ATO pump to push the ATO water to the Kalk reactor and it runs when your ATO runs. I didn't choose that method, because I wanted to control the dosing of Kalk, not the evaporation rate controlling the dosing of Kalk. Living in Wisconsin, it was 80°F yesterday and tonight it's going to get down to 49°F. So consistency is not there in my opinion.

    I am a guy who does not buy the newest of the new, why? Well, I can't afford it, I have a family, etc etc; most everyone here has their limitations. So, when I bought my Apex (also bought used) the guy threw in a BRS 1.1ml/min dosing pump for the heck of it. Shout out to BIOCUBE!! Very awesome guy!

    So, I had this dosing pump sitting in my closet next to the Kalk reactor and decided to pair them up. This was after much google research on installing this particular reactor, I didn't find much info out there. There seems to be a shift into the stir-bar type of Kalk reactor. Moving on. This style uses a MJ400 to suck water out of the middle of the chamber and deliver it to about 1/2" from the bottom of the chamber where the slurry is residing. This is to keep the Kalk solution mixed up nd the water saturated with the Kalk. This is intended to dose consistent Kalk solution to the system. Since I don't have my apex up yet, I utilized 2 timers, one for the dosing pump and one for the KR pump. I run the KR pump 4 times a day for 15 minutes. I run the dosing pump at all times except for the times when the KR pump is pumping, I turn it off for an hour after the KR pump runs.

    How is it plumbed? First I have the dosing pump; I took the intake and hooked up a hose and put it into the bottom of my ATO reservoir (10g tank). Then the output of the dosing pump goes to the input of the KR. The input of the KR620 is the fitting with the hose that goes down to the bottom of the KR. This is so the ATO water goes to the bottom and you are not dosing a dilution that would be sitting at the top of the KR chamber. Then I hooked up a tube from the output of the KR to the sump. I put the drip line from the KR into the return section. The KR uses speed fittings, john guest, shark bite or whatever brand name push to connect fittings you know of. So, installing the tubing, a breeze, just push them in, give them a tug to make sure they are tight and then push them in one more time for the extra security.

    So, picture time. Please ignore the wires all over the place. This is all going to be taken care of when I hook up my apex and get the wiring organized. For right now, it's a mess, but it works.

    Dosing pump, just sitting in front of my ATO tank. This will get mounted above the sump once I mount the Apex. Left side is the intake with the flexible tubing, right side is Polyethylene tubing going to the KR input. You can see the bottom of the KR at the bottom of the picture with the Kalk slurry at the bottom.
    [​IMG]

    Here is the top of the KR, you see the rigid tubing going into the KR input and the silicone tubing coming from the output to the sump. (Talk about a close fit!!) The grey plus is where you add more Kalk, unscrew the plug and get a funnel and pour in Kalk. I mixed up some Kalk and RO/DI water in an old vinegar jug and mixed it before I added it to the reactor. My goal was to avoid clumping, I did, but I don't know if clumping is a concern.
    [​IMG]

    Here is a profile of the KR620. You will notice it's filled to the top as it is airtight and uses the pressure from the dosing pump to push the Kalk solution out of the reactor into the pump. The reason it's airtight is C02 will cause the Kalk solution to precipitate CA and that's no good. You can also see the tubing for the input that delivers the ATO water to the bottom of the reactor. What you can't see is the little brackets that hold the rest of the hard tubing in place, ensuring that the tube stays at the bottom of the chamber.
    [​IMG]

    Last but not least a boring picture of too many things gripped together, but the clear tube is dosing Kalk. I have a probe/tube holder on my wish list to clean up this situation. Right now when it runs, it delivers one drop approx every 4 seconds.
    [​IMG]

    After 24 hours of this running I checked my Alk/CA and they were slightly low. However, I did not raise them with any 2-part I have laying around. I want to find out the levels of Alk/CA every 24 hours and then I will adjust from there. I am planning on running this for a week, unless one of my tests shows that action is needed, then I will dose additional 2-part. Right now my dosing pump is going about 20 hours a day, for it is the smaller dosing pump from BRS that is meant to be part of the 2-part dosing pump setup. My next move would be to win the lottery and get a Neptune dos, or the 50ml/minute dosing pump and adjust the timer.

    I hope this is easy to understand. If you have any questions, please ask away and I will do my best to answer them.

    Thanks for reading,
    Matt
     
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  3. Todd_Sails

    Todd_Sails Giant Squid

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    Strong Work Matt. I may do something similar some day- in a DIY way
     
  4. zesty

    zesty Sailfin Tang

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    Thanks Todd! I saw plenty of DIY ideas out there, I'm sure you can come up with something!
     
  5. zesty

    zesty Sailfin Tang

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    So I checked my Alk/CA last night and they were exactly the same as the day before.
    Yay for consistency!
     
  6. Newreef15

    Newreef15 Horrid Stonefish

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    Look like a solid project. I will be tagging along for this one because I have similar plains for my new nano build. Glad to see you decided to make a thread for it.

    So as of right now the dosing pump is running for 20 hours a day ?
     
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  7. zesty

    zesty Sailfin Tang

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    Yes, due to the fact that it's a smaller dosing pump, it was sitting on my shelf collecting dust. I turn it off for an hour starting the same time the MJ400 fires up in the chamber and mixes the Kalk.
     
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  9. zesty

    zesty Sailfin Tang

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    I have added a BRS 50ml per minute dosing pump. This way, I can stop the smaller dosing pump from running 20 hours a day.
    I have also hooked it up to my Apex. So the dosing pump will not turn on within one hour of the kalk mixing pump operation.

    So far it's been working great!
     
  10. Matt Rogers

    Matt Rogers Kingfish Staff Member

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    Nice work Matt. Are you still at one drip every 4 seconds?
     
  11. zesty

    zesty Sailfin Tang

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    Thanks! Since I bought the bigger pump and was hooking up my apex at the same time. I headed over to the neptune community for some newbie help. This is what I got from them and so far it seems to be working well.

    So, MixPump is setup to run for 20 minutes every 6 hours
    Then, KalkDose will dose every 14:40 minutes for 20 seconds unless the Blockalk is status "ON" or if the pH is greater than 8.3.
    If Blockalk is "ON" it means that the "MixPump" has run in the past 60 minutes and the Kalkdose will not turn on. This way, I don't dose kalkwasser that has just been mixed up, it will only dose the saturated water at the top of the reactor.
     
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  12. Billme

    Billme Eyelash Blennie

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    Good thread zesty. Thanks for shining some light on kalk dosing. A question I have is, how much ato do you still have to add?
     
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