Other than time is vinegar different than muriatic acid for rocks? - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 2 (permalink) Old 08-12-2020, 08:46 PM Thread Starter
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Other than time is vinegar different than muriatic acid for rocks?

I have a couple weeks before my 50g and stand arrives so I am soaking wood and preparing some Seiryu rock for aquascape. There are a lot of images of acid washed Seiryu rock that are attractive. The acid appears to darken the stone and increase the contrast with the white veins, my guess is by dissolving outer layers of calcium minerals that coat the stone and make it "hazy".

I'm experimenting with distilled white vinegar (5%), which appears to be working, lots of fizz (hopefully stones don't mess water parameters but I have hard alkaline water already). I know I can pick up muriatic acid at the local hardware or Amazon but I'd rather not deal with toxic chems and the mess if relatively safe vinegar can do the job.

Other than a faster process, is there any difference in the muriatic acid over vinegar, such as different/darker color results?

Given that the Seiryu I have is probably a limestone, if left in acid indefinitely, does it eventually dissolve completely away? If so, it seems the trade off of the acid wash is that it will weaken the stone. It certainly does not "seal" it from further mineral leech, in fact may make that worse.
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post #2 of 2 (permalink) Old 08-12-2020, 09:21 PM
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Originally Posted by ahem View Post
Other than a faster process, is there any difference in the muriatic acid over vinegar, such as different/darker color results?
If just doing a test to see if a rock is inert, muriatic acid is just more acidic and will give you a better visual. If soaking rocks known to be lime, I'd avoid it because it will do exactly what your next question asks.
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Originally Posted by ahem View Post
Given that the Seiryu I have is probably a limestone, if left in acid indefinitely, does it eventually dissolve completely away? If so, it seems the trade off of the acid wash is that it will weaken the stone. It certainly does not "seal" it from further mineral leech, in fact may make that worse.
It would probably take quite a bit of acid to dissolve the stone away, but that's exactly what you're doing. I'm not aware of any stones with only lime on the exterior, which would seem to be the only way to avoid this.

Nothing good happens fast in an ecosystem.
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aquascape, limestone, muriatic acid, seiryu, vinegar

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