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Old 06-12-2013, 10:45 PM   #71
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Caribsea live sand. Its not fine sand but its just crushed coral substrate. I always vacuum the gravel and i had no problems for 5 months. 30 lbs of live sand about 1.5 to two inches tall. My nassarius snails help stir up my sand bed as well.

I was told to stir it once in a while so that the detritus comes free and is picked up by my filter. Only the front of the tank is stirred. I leave the ugly green algae on the glass in front of the substrate to help control some phosphates. Its ugly but dosent bother me.
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Old 06-12-2013, 10:47 PM   #72
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I would never vacuum my sand bed. Not unless it's large grains (which I wouldn't use anyway). No need to ever stir it.
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Old 06-12-2013, 11:04 PM   #73
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I would never vacuum my sand bed. Not unless it's large grains (which I wouldn't use anyway). No need to ever stir it.
You have fine sand? Does that work better?
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Old 06-12-2013, 11:18 PM   #74
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Well, the finer the grains, the less detritus can get trapped between them, but I have a feeling I have the same size grains as you. You are referring to that bag-live sand carib sea sells, that you find on the shelves of the LFS, correct? If so, I believe the sand I have used, and am using now is about the same size.
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Old 06-13-2013, 12:06 AM   #75
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Well, the finer the grains, the less detritus can get trapped between them, but I have a feeling I have the same size grains as you. You are referring to that bag-live sand carib sea sells, that you find on the shelves of the LFS, correct? If so, I believe the sand I have used, and am using now is about the same size.
Yes sir. Thats the bag i was recommended to use as i was told it helps buffer my ph.
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Old 06-13-2013, 08:53 AM   #76
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Calcium based substrate in general, should buffer ph, but the size grains you have don't need stirring/vacuuming. You said you have nassarius snails, so that should be enough.
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Old 06-13-2013, 09:31 AM   #77
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what filter are you changing monthly?
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Old 06-14-2013, 03:11 PM   #78
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Cotton and carbon filters
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Old 06-15-2013, 12:12 AM   #79
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That API test is weird. If you follow the directions it gives yoy high readings for the nitrates. When I took my water into my lfs they told me not to shake that one like has in ghe directions just very lightly shake it and don't shake it for the full minute either just enough to mix it. When I tested mine at home by the directions my nitrates was off the chart. I then took it to them and it was way lower then what I got at home. Although I did do a 40gallon water change and it brought it down. However I did end up with a trace of amnonia and nitrite after doing that. Tomorrow I will take my water into the lfs store to see if tjose two are gone. Hoping it was just a very tiny mini cycle.
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Old 06-19-2013, 02:36 PM   #80
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Update : i finally got my nitrates down to .5 ppm. Purigen and chaeto works like a dream. I want to thank everyone for their input. You guys are the best!!
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