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Old 10-21-2010, 03:41 PM   #1
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Is there a rule to follow when adding stones or rocks or slate to an aquarium

Is there a rule to follow when adding stones or rocks or slate to an aquarium aside from making sure they're securely set? Can I simply use polished stones or slate pieces I can buy from local stores other than my LFS?
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Old 10-21-2010, 04:00 PM   #2
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If this is for a Sw tank you want rock that has lots of surface area. There is less surface area on a smoth stone than on a pourus rock that`s filled with all kinds of pock marks. If you get what I mean.
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Old 10-21-2010, 04:25 PM   #3
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Yes I see. Perhaps it's best to have a little of each. I'm planning a layout for a 50 gal. SW that I just ordered yesterday. Know of any great links to help with laying out a tank?

I'm also looking in to artificial coral reef pieces that I've seen on the internet. They're pricey but in a 50 gal. I'll probably only need one of the medium size.

I'm getting a solid oak stand made for the tank. The stand comes well sanded and then I'll apply two coats, maybe three on the top surface, of classic oak polyurathane. I refinished an oak mantel, c. 1885, I purchased at an auction for $30. What a steal. It looks beautiful now.
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Old 10-21-2010, 04:27 PM   #4
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Indeed in a salt system, you want porous or open rock for bacterial growth, neither polished stone or slate is going to give you the proper surface for bacteria.

For proper filtration in a 50 gallon tank, you will need more like 50 pounds of rock - you might get by with less, if the rock is very porous.

Might I suggest reading through the stickies in the saltwater forum for some general information on setting up a SW tank?
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Old 10-21-2010, 05:07 PM   #5
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check out the DIY section to make your own rock.
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Old 10-23-2010, 11:42 AM   #6
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I checked out the DIY section on rocks, etc. Sounds like fun cutting out styrofoam to form a seascape. Now, here's my question. Doesn't styrofoam float? It must need to be glued down in the tank and if so, how does one clean it periodically?
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Old 10-24-2010, 12:55 AM   #7
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DIY rock is usually a concrete mix - not your usual mix - that you make your own and cure it in usually a kiddie pool or trash can to pretty much the same water you'd have in your tank.
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Old 10-24-2010, 10:41 AM   #8
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Thanks. Right now I'm leaning toward my LFS for rocks. I really don't have the room to use styrofoam and I don't need the mess it leaves behind. Thanks again.
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Old 10-24-2010, 11:50 AM   #9
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this might be a good option for you-
Dry Rock
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Old 10-24-2010, 12:33 PM   #10
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You want at least one pound per gallon of tank volume, but the general recommendation is 1 1/2 - 2 pounds per gallon. You can use 75% of base rock (like the Marco rock linked above) and 25% of LR either purchased locally or online.

It depends on what you want in your tank. A reef tank requires more, a FOWLR needs less, but may need additional filtrations if you go below the recommended ranges.
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