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Old 03-10-2005, 01:59 PM   #1
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Sand question...

I've done some research and have decided to go against the grain and just use white silica play sand (toys r us). I know I will be missing some of the bennifits of argonite but sometimes I just have to learn the hard way
Anyway one thing I am not clear on is will this sand become ls as well and will I bennifit from a dsb of it? Or, should I just use 1-2 inches of it on bottom?
And kind of related - when I start my cycle I plan to use raw shrimp. Does it matter where I put the shrimp? Should I put it on the base rock (hirocks.com) or on the sand (i.e. will the bacteria colonize faster on the base rock than the silica sand)?
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Old 03-10-2005, 08:08 PM   #2
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Sand is sand, playsand will work as well as aragonite. "Live sand" is just sand that has been cycled. NOthing magic about it. I've been using it since I started and have not had any problem maintaining PH. IT stays the same with no additives or supplements. If you have extremely low PH water then it may be an issue. The bacteria that developes during your cycle will colonize everywhere the water touches, including your glass and any other items in the tank. Just put it where there is water flow. Getting a cup or two of sand from an established tank will give you a small bump in your cycle, but in reality will only knock a day or two off of the time needed in a larger tank.
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Old 03-10-2005, 08:58 PM   #3
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so why does everyone say not to use silica sand. I am going through the same thing, i want to start my tank but Home Depot doesnt have any tropical play sand in and they dont know when they will. What are the benefits to using the tropical sand. Why do people say silica is not good? i plan on having sand sifters, will white silica sand be alright for them? I also ordered base rock from hirocks.com, and will be buying LR from liverocks.com. Should i put the LR on the sand, or on top of the base rock, or Both?

TIA
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50 Gallon Oceanic: 2 maxijet 1200's, 2 150 watt visitherm heaters, BakPak II Skimmer with PS & BT, Coralife Lunar 2X65 watt Power Compacts

Filtration: 50lbs LR.com, 60lbs sand

Swimmers: 2 O. Clowns, Yellow Watchman, Firefish, Yellow Tang, Dottyback.

Clean-Up: Several snail & hermits, Skunk Cleaner, 2 Peps.

Corals: 2 zoo colonies, yellow polyps, star polyps
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Old 03-10-2005, 09:05 PM   #4
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Sand is sand, playsand will work as well as aragonite

Well....

aragonite sand can act as a helpful buffer and don't have the risk of silicates, which are believed to encourage or at least facilitate the growth of diatoms. But purely with respect to live sand, the bacteria don't care. They'll colonize every surface in your tank.
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30 gal standard 55 lbs LR, 60 lb live sand, 10 gal sump/refugium. Urchin skimmer, mag7 pump, 3 x 96W PC combination 10,000K/actinic bulb, 2 blue LED moonlights
SG 1.024, temp 79.5, pH 8.4

Livestock I added:

1 skunk cleaner. 12 hermits: red, scarlet, blue. 15 or so assorted snails. Discosomas, Ricordia, Rhodactis mushroom corals, chaetomorpha (sump), 1 feather duster, Montipora digitata, Montipora capricornis, Montipora hispids. assorted zoos, Xenia, Kenya tree coral, green Sinularia, green star polyps, branching hammer coral, bubble coral, Devil's hand leather. Yellow chromis, purple firefish.

Hitchhikers: the usual suspects :crabs, bristles, urchin, mantis shrimp (now in exile in mantis tank)

List of possible/likely newcomers:

Feather duster. PJ cardinal, Bangghai cardinal, Firefish goby, Clownfish, Neon goby, Yellow watchman goby, Orchid dottyback. Various corals.
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Old 03-10-2005, 09:06 PM   #5
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i was wondering that myself but then i read a few articles that said that silica sand doesnt really elevate the amount of diluted silica in your water but other things commonly found in aquariums will.

http://www.reefs.org/library/article/r_toonen9.html
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Old 03-10-2005, 09:23 PM   #6
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was wondering that myself but then i read a few articles that said that silica sand doesnt really elevate the amount of diluted silica in your water but other things commonly found in aquariums will.

I know what you mean. There is a lot of contradictory info in this hobby. For me, the idea of the sand acting as a buffer and the desire to use a fine grain sand for a DSB in my sump were was the most important factors, so I went with aragonite.
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30 gal standard 55 lbs LR, 60 lb live sand, 10 gal sump/refugium. Urchin skimmer, mag7 pump, 3 x 96W PC combination 10,000K/actinic bulb, 2 blue LED moonlights
SG 1.024, temp 79.5, pH 8.4

Livestock I added:

1 skunk cleaner. 12 hermits: red, scarlet, blue. 15 or so assorted snails. Discosomas, Ricordia, Rhodactis mushroom corals, chaetomorpha (sump), 1 feather duster, Montipora digitata, Montipora capricornis, Montipora hispids. assorted zoos, Xenia, Kenya tree coral, green Sinularia, green star polyps, branching hammer coral, bubble coral, Devil's hand leather. Yellow chromis, purple firefish.

Hitchhikers: the usual suspects :crabs, bristles, urchin, mantis shrimp (now in exile in mantis tank)

List of possible/likely newcomers:

Feather duster. PJ cardinal, Bangghai cardinal, Firefish goby, Clownfish, Neon goby, Yellow watchman goby, Orchid dottyback. Various corals.
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Old 03-10-2005, 09:26 PM   #7
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Excellent reading!
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Old 03-10-2005, 10:12 PM   #8
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you're welcome just dont do what i did and buy sand blasting sand because it's pretty coarse and has tons of dust although the one i got is pretty fine so i dont see it being too much of a problem
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Old 03-10-2005, 11:02 PM   #9
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would there be any benefit to mixing some aragonite sand with silica sand? The thing is that i only budgeted myself for $20 in sand, b/c i thought home depot would carry the tropical sand. I was thinking 2/3 silica and 1/3 caribsea. Or would there be no benefit to this.
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50 Gallon Oceanic: 2 maxijet 1200's, 2 150 watt visitherm heaters, BakPak II Skimmer with PS & BT, Coralife Lunar 2X65 watt Power Compacts

Filtration: 50lbs LR.com, 60lbs sand

Swimmers: 2 O. Clowns, Yellow Watchman, Firefish, Yellow Tang, Dottyback.

Clean-Up: Several snail & hermits, Skunk Cleaner, 2 Peps.

Corals: 2 zoo colonies, yellow polyps, star polyps
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Old 03-10-2005, 11:09 PM   #10
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I believe that one of the reasons you may not want silica based sand is because when you look at it in a microscope, you can see that it has sharp edges and the sand sifters that some of us have in our tanks don't care too much for that.
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