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Old 11-11-2010, 02:57 PM   #21
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thincat -- thanks for your explanation, it at least makes sense to me. I have a couple of related questions if that's OK...

1. Obviously if the sand is deep enough, it needs to be replaced. Is there any danger of an ammonia spike when new sand is put in?

2. The old sand, if one wants to reuse the sand, maybe for a different tank. What would be an effective way to clean it to ensure that the H2S and other bad stuff is all gone?
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Old 11-11-2010, 03:41 PM   #22
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you can rinse it thoroughly and it will be fine. you can rinse it with fresh water if you want to kill everything in it, or salt water if you want to try and save some of the critters in it.
i don't know about where you guys live, but 100+ pounds of aragonite based sand around here gets to be pretty expensive.
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Old 11-11-2010, 03:54 PM   #23
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1) whenever you move a tank you take the chance of starting a mini cycle, so you have to monitor it closely. Doug makes a good point on cost. But remember you have to rinse the sand really good. Whatever you dicide to do, keep a cup or two of the old sand to seed the new sand. This is even if you decide to reuse your sand.
2)As mr. Miyagi states, left hand...swirl and wipe on...Rt. hand swirl and wipe off.................LOL
Don't expect the aragonite sand to run clear as the milky color is the calcium breaking down from the sand.
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Old 11-11-2010, 05:02 PM   #24
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So in recap it is best to always replace/clean and reuse your sand bed and monitor closely for the first couple of days in oder to make sure you don't have a mini cycle kill all of your live stock...

In my case that I have about 70lbs of LR in 55 I should not have a huge problem with this "mini cycle"??
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Old 11-11-2010, 07:59 PM   #25
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regardless of the amount of LR you will still stand a chance of a mini cycle. Any load other then the load that your LR is able tranfore the ammonia to a harmless state..nitrite, nitrate is a min-cycle.i
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Old 11-11-2010, 09:15 PM   #26
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The sand substrate is coated with bacteria and part of your filtration. New sand isn't and will require some time to become coated with bacteria (Live). This sand can blow around the tank creating a sand storm.

The existing sand not only is coated with beneficial bactgeria, it also contains all sorts of detritus under the upper layer.

A DSB (deep sand bed) is 4" or deeper and helps in the denitrification process (converting nitrate to nitrogen).

As I recall, your tank has only been running for about 7 months. Hardly enough time for it to be filled with much detritus if you have a decent clean up crew. My tank has been running for 6+ years. so my dsb has all kinds of nasties through the layers, that are decomposing.

Take your sand in buckets and keep it covered with fresh sw, after rinsing it witih sw in those buckets. Pour off the excess water and add more fresh sw. That should help retain the bacteria while cleaning the sand of some detritus.
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Old 11-12-2010, 02:56 AM   #27
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Thanks cmor!
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Old 11-14-2010, 11:25 PM   #28
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This was a really great discussion. I am looking for a large tank already running to purchase and relocate at my home. I have been trying to research the move.

Thanks!!
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Old 12-07-2010, 10:31 AM   #29
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I finally made my move. It went pretty well, as there were no fish lost during the process. The link in my signature to my fish log (flog) has an entry about it, and the thread I started has some other thoughts (I'll post a link about it here instead of re-posting the whole thing)

Moving a 150G FOWLR
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Old 12-07-2010, 11:31 AM   #30
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"Flog". That's a good one.
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