Substrate

Discussion in 'General Discussions and Advice' started by inflames, 26 May 2009.

  1. inflames

    inflames

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    Hi Guys and Gals:wave2:,

    I am in the process of removing my course coral as my substrate and will probably be going for the "playsand" option as its more financially viable. I have been slowly removing my current course coral (every 3 days I take out a few handfulls) as I dont wanna upset the system to much. My question's are these... :razz: I have read that I need to wash the playsand untill it is white. Then I can add it to the tank. Should I add this slowly (a few hand fulls every few days) to say one side of the tank before I remove all the current sustrate? Can I let the washed playsand stand in a bucket of water that I removed for water change for a day or 2 before adding the sand to the main tank? Wanna try and avoid a "mini-cycle:nono:" as much as possible. How deep should the end product be? I also heard that the sand can float around for a few days before settling?!?! Any advise would be appreciated!:thumbup:
     
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  3. Jaco Schoeman

    Jaco Schoeman MASA Contributor

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    Hi inflames. I did this exercise once. So YES, you are correct mostly all of the above. Just a few notes: If you have washed the sand thoroughly, nothing will float... Make sure you wash it nicely!!! It would be good to let it lie in salt water a bit before adding it in yes, as you are rinsing with tap water that then also goes into the tank :nono:

    Then on the depth, it all depends on you and what you plan to keep. IF you can go for an in-tank DSB, go for it, just remember that playsand are very small and light, and you'll find that your powerheads cause serious havock if pointed downwards - just play around with it. If you cant go for a DSB, have the gravel about 3-5 cm if possible. You can add it all at the once.

    I recon you will have a mini cycle no matter what you try / do - although my dad has had his playsand in for three weeks now without any cycle. But rather have it once than extend the lifetime of it by adding it slowly (I might be wrong...)

    You will however not look back after doing this!!! It really looks much better!!!

    Good luck!!! :biggrin:
     
  4. inflames

    inflames Thread Starter

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    Thanks for your thoughts man. I do have a sump with a plenum in so I'll probably just have enough to cover the bottom of the DT. 1 or 2 cm. Trying this as an option to get rid of red slime algae. It keeps rearing its ugly head every few weeks...have done allot to try and get rid of it...think that the playsand substate should help allot? Think that the course substate is causing high phosphates and detritus build up. Hope it looks and WORKS much better! Thanks for your thoughts! As sson as I get this phot uploader to work I'll post some b4 and after photo's!
     
  5. Jaco Schoeman

    Jaco Schoeman MASA Contributor

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    Great... And yes, it MIGHT have been the coarse substrate that has detritus buildup - BUT, playsand will not prevent cyano from occuring. IF you find that the cyano returns, then it might be something else. You can always fight cyano with more flow (they hate flow) or if possible, reduce your photoperiod to about 1/3 of the current stage. Cyano needs light...

    But the best way to get rid of the cyano, is just by simply making your water harder (please do not add cement at this stage...:p) Find out what your KH is, if you can get it at about 10 - 12 ppm, the cyano will disappear altogether, and if you can maintain 10 ppm it won't come back - nor will GHA - they can not live in hard water, and need soft water to thrive...

    Good luck mate!!!
     
  6. inflames

    inflames Thread Starter

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    Hi Jaco,

    I have been struggling with Cyno for months and seem to just about have a handle on getting rid of it completely! hense the change to fine sand substrate...thought it will help. I have also been monitoring my KH and was dosing with a KH buffer to get it up. started at about 6 and have it up to 8 or 9 now(over a period of 2 months or so) gonna start dosing with Bicarb once or twice a week to get my KH above 10 and then it should stay there? I do top up (my evaporated water) with Kalkwasser (I believe this is good and stabilizes allot) at night when mt main DT lights are off. I have also brought down the time my lights are on and that did help a little!
     
  7. Jaco Schoeman

    Jaco Schoeman MASA Contributor

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    Yes, well then it sounds that are getting a firm grasp on it... Just keep on doing what you are, and you will win... Just remember to not increase the KH too high... softies cant really handle much more than 12ppm... so that should be your limit
     
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