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Old 08-24-2003, 04:31 PM   #1
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Baserock Question

I was wondering what would be a good mixture of base rock and LR as far as pounds of each would be good for a 55gal tank (L48"xW13"xH23").
Also 3 to 4 inches of sand I think would be good. How much playsand (southdown) to live sand ratio would I need? I know I keep asking alot of questions but I am very excited about starting this tank and I want to do it right. Thanks...
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Old 08-24-2003, 05:04 PM   #2
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Both choices are up to you. If I'm not mistaken, even a handful of LS is enough to start a health filtration system. I used about a 50/50 mix. And as far as the LR, it really depends on your budget. I believe you would want about 100 lbs of rock total. It can be all live or only 10lbs live and the other 90 base rock. I know that if you choose a good, porous, baserock, it will eventually become live with the organism from your LR. Again, here, I did a 50/50 blend.

Mind you, I am not an expert, but I have learned a lot from reading this forum.

Thank You Alumni

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Old 08-25-2003, 12:46 PM   #3
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Usually the rule of thumb is about 1 to 1.5 Lbs of LR per gallon of water. That equates to about 55 - 83 Lbs of rock. You can get a good calcium based base rock to start with and then seed it with the LR. LR is expensive, so use your judgement and aquascaping needs to determine how much you need. A guide would be about a 80/20 ratio of base to live. As far as how much sand you would need, there is a very neat little calculator for that in this forum (see the banner line above). This will calculate how much sand you need based on how thick you want the bed. Also remember that if you want to create a LS base (recommended), you will need to seed it with LS. You would not need much. It is also recommended that you place the LR on PVC supports equal to the depth of the sand bed. This is to avoid creating dead pockets of nitrate and gas. It is also recommended that you get a "critter pack" of detrivores (snails, crabs etc.) to handle stirring up the sand bed and cleaning the base. Because the base is sand, it will be difficult to vacuum th stuff up without pulling out some of the sand with it. There are some good books that can give you some great direction in terms of setting up your tank. Make sure that you do lots of reading and research before you start. Good luck
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Old 08-25-2003, 01:54 PM   #4
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So you could basically.. Buy a Few pounds of LR seed it with Base Rock and eventully it would become LR as well.

As for the Sand.. and if the LFS is cool you could get like a few Cups of LS from them . Seed it with your South down sand and be good to go ?
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Old 08-25-2003, 10:47 PM   #5
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As for the Sand.. and if the LFS is cool you could get like a few Cups of LS from them . Seed it with your South down sand and be good to go ?
Great idea but just as a cautionary note, make sure any sand aquired from the LFS it comes from a coral only tank to prevent possible copper contamination or other meds that will most likely be in tanks containing fish. Same goes for any "friends" that may donate.

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Old 08-26-2003, 08:30 AM   #6
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Question.

Why would it really matter if it came from a reef tank ?

If one does not plan to Keep a Reef Tank and merely a Fish with live Rock tank would it matter?

I am sure there are other precautions that must be taken before you Seed well established sand from one tank with your own .

Please advise ?
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Old 08-26-2003, 09:27 AM   #7
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The caution is there because, unless you really know and trust your LFS, you never know what meds they may have had in the tank. Since the calcium based sand tends to absorb these meds, there is a small risk that you may be introducing some undesirable elements to your tank. I understand that you want to keep a FO tank. What if you change your mind later? Also some of the invertebrates that may inhabit the LR you use would not be able to handle these trace elements well. It is a small but very appropriate bit of advice. Good luck 8)
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Old 08-26-2003, 09:54 AM   #8
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Hey man,

Thats what i am here for . All the advice is Grade A top choice!


Thanks Again
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Old 08-26-2003, 11:41 AM   #9
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It is also recommended that you place the LR on PVC supports equal to the depth of the sand bed. This is to avoid creating dead pockets of nitrate and gas.
Now for my next question. Does anyone have a diagram or picture of a support that would give me an idea of how to build one just for visual reference please. Thanks...
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Old 08-26-2003, 11:49 AM   #10
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One thing to note is that altho a cup of live sand from another tank will get you started, it takes several months to a year to establish a fully functional DSB. It does not help the load right from the start.

I personally, think this is why people get tank crashes just a few months out. They think they have a top notch DSB and LR filtration system and overstock the tank....but this is just a personal theory of mine
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