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Old 02-05-2014, 02:16 PM   #1
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Oolite Sand Issue?

Good evening everyone, I currently have oolite sand in my 40 breeder. It has to be sugar grained sized, because it's incredibly small. The problem is, I'm having a difficult time keeping it on the bottom. It's not so much a sand storm or huge dips in my bed, but constantly swirling within my water, almost like micro bubbles. I was told it would glue in time, however, I have seen no improvements in 4 months.. Also, the tank has a Koralia 850 + Mag 7 wide open. I know it's a lot of flow but any thoughts on making it stay?
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Old 02-05-2014, 03:07 PM   #2
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Less flow or try aiming the ph towards the surface/moving it a little higher
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Old 02-05-2014, 03:41 PM   #3
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Both the return and the 850 are aimed directly at top of surface...
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Old 02-06-2014, 02:06 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JsQuid View Post
Both the return and the 850 are aimed directly at top of surface...
Are they pointed towards each other and colliding? You gotta find the sweet spot.
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Old 02-06-2014, 02:08 AM   #5
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Yes, each are directed at one another. I have tried multiple places and a variety of scenarios, I'm assuming the sand is just too fine. The tank has been up since September, I would think the sand would have settled by now. Any ideas aside from repositioning the power heads since that hasn't been effective? Maybe adding life to the sand bed?
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Old 02-06-2014, 12:05 PM   #6
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That's the problem with oolitic sand. The grains are little egg-shaped spheres. Because of their smooth surface, they don't 'lock' in together very well. In my experience, coarser sand of varying sizes works best. I usually recommend Caribsea special grade because the combination of larger pieces and finer grains produces a substrate that really meshes together to form a more stable bottom. You can add a layer of more coarse sand, but you will have the issues adding sand to a running system.

You can reduce your flow until the sand doesnt blow around but that would not be great for the health of the tank.
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Old 02-06-2014, 12:30 PM   #7
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Well, I am moving in April. I'll just buy another grade of sand and add it to the existing sand bottom. When I do so, should I try to mix all of it together? Or, should I just add a thicker level over the oolite? I'll be sure to thoroughly wash the sand before adding... That way it won't be too dusty and stressful on the corals.
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Old 02-06-2014, 12:54 PM   #8
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My tank is a 39 gallon and i have 3 korialas alternating (1400, 1050, & 750gph) I also use sugar fine sand and have a mag 3 (350 gph) return pump. It took me a while to get it right but maybe instead of the flows colliding, just let them brush each other. I know exactly how thay sand is and it takes patience to get it right! Heres my tank if you can see the powerheads. 2 On the right, 1 on the left where return is.


Also, why a model 7 (700gph) for return on a 40 gallon? Just curious
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Old 02-06-2014, 12:56 PM   #9
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Trust me, I have tried just about every position with the power heads... If it hasn't settled by the time I move, I'll have to add a thicker grain. I hate seeing the sand particles floating around, it just kills me!
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Old 02-06-2014, 12:57 PM   #10
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Just throw the old sand away. I cant imagine how you could mix heavy wet sand, and since its the cheapest part of the whole system, its just not worth the trouble. If you were to put new sand on top of the old, you would see a layered effect, and since you can avoid that easily you should.
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