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Old 06-16-2008, 07:47 PM   #1
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Tank Bottom

What's an appropriate material to put at the bottom of the tank to keep gravel substrate and decorations from scratching/breaking the glass without letting anaerobic bacteria develop?
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Old 06-16-2008, 09:02 PM   #2
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Standard gravel is usually smooth enough to not cause any concern. If you plan on using heavy decor, eggcrate can help to keep it from touching the bottom.
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Old 06-17-2008, 12:05 AM   #3
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Neil nailed it on the head. In my tanks with lots of rocks I use eggcrate, in my other tanks, I use plain pool filter sand which does require occasional stirring.
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Old 06-17-2008, 12:27 AM   #4
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I use egg crate in the 150. The Africans dig around that sand so much that no matter how stable the rock structure, they end up pushing it over. It's a little piece of mind. You can buy it at Home Depot, Lowes, or most hardware stores in the lighting section.
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Old 06-17-2008, 01:32 PM   #5
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I'd heard of using the egg crate, just wasn't sure of what material it should be. Like, I can imagine that cardboard would be a bad idea.
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Old 06-17-2008, 02:40 PM   #6
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It's plastic, not really what eggs actually come in. People use it in commercial buildings in the light fixtures. It looks like this:
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Old 06-17-2008, 03:05 PM   #7
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That definitely doesn't look like something that should be called egg crate, but it'll do, thanks!
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Old 06-18-2008, 01:12 AM   #8
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an underground filter never turned on works just as well.
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Old 06-18-2008, 05:46 AM   #9
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an underground filter never turned on works just as well.
Wouldn't that be a perfect breeding ground for anaerobic bacteria? Doesn't sound like a good idea to me, there needs to be water movement under UG filters to prevent anaerobic bacteria.
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Old 06-18-2008, 02:27 PM   #10
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Wouldn't that be a perfect breeding ground for anaerobic bacteria? Doesn't sound like a good idea to me, there needs to be water movement under UG filters to prevent anaerobic bacteria.
The tank is 150g, set up in 1999, cycled 8 months w/UGF then the UGF was slowly (over the course of 6-9 months) turned off. There is between 1" > 4" natural gravel over it w/large boulders on top of some of it. Approx. 60 plants of all types (all doing well). No CO2 (yet). PMDD for ferts, though am going to singles after this runs out. Lighting is low-medium. There are approx 400 large fancy guppys and a dozen RCS. Water changes are 50% every 6 months with all water being syphoned out of the lift tubes using hose and a powerhead. Th gravel has never been vacuumed. There does not need to be water movement if the filter has never been used (I use it mainly as a cushion for the boulders), or has been turned off VERY slowly (over months).

There is absolutely no aenorobic bacteria beneath the bed. I purposely built the stand to be able to always check the filter bed. It is almost as clean as when it was installed 9 yrs ago (10 yrs, this August). Will post some photos soon.
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