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Old 09-15-2004, 12:28 AM   #1
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Using egg-crate underneath sandbed: Good or Bad?

I was going to layer the bottom of my tank with egg crate to protect the glass underneath from the lr. I was worried that some critters might borrow and cause the lr to adjust and create pressure points...

Are there any long term negative effects of doing so? I came across another post where someone mentioned that using eggcrate underneath the sandbed was bad.
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Old 09-15-2004, 01:13 AM   #2
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Is bad... Stuff will get caught in the squares...

Just put the rock on the glass... it's not gonna harm anything. What are you worried about?
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Old 09-15-2004, 01:14 AM   #3
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I don't see why it would be bad, or any worse than a plenum. The plenum, DSB, SSB, barebottom debate has raged on and on and on... IMHO whatever works for the individual is best. If you are going DSB and have a soild base structure it probably isn't neccisary or if your DSB is deep enough the weight will displace and not be a factor. Also most glasss tanks have tempered glass bottoms which is stronger thaat one might think. Plenum users might say using eggcrate might create areas on inactivity and anerobic bacteria pockets aiding in the nitrogen cycle. DSB advocates might suggest it will do exactly the same as previously mentioned and become a ticking timebomb as a nutrient sink. *shrugs* Do a little reasearch both for and against plenums and DSB and decide for yourself. Keep us posted on you findings. I am interested to see what you come up with.

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Old 09-15-2004, 11:38 AM   #4
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I'll look into that...

The reason I wanted to put the crate underneath was because I was told that putting the rock on top of the sand could be hazardous as critters and stuff could borrow underneath causing the structure of the rocks to tip over, possibly onto the side of the tank breaking the glass.

Therefore, being told not to place the rock on top of the sand, I was recommended to place the rock directly on the glass bottom. By placing the rock first, then the sand afterwards was suppose to create a more solid structure.

By placing the rocks directly on the glass bottom, I was worried about the pressure points caused by the rock's odd shapes.
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Old 09-15-2004, 01:51 PM   #5
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I wouldn;t worry too much about placing the rock directly on the bottom, as sumphead mentioned, the bottom of glass tanks are usually tempered and would hold it fine. If you would like a little more piece of mind, go half way Put down half your substrate, place your rocks, then put down the other half of your substrate. This way, they're not sitting directly on the surface for critters to crawl underneath and they're also not sitting directly on the glass of your tank.
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Old 09-15-2004, 01:57 PM   #6
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put your rock on the glass then the sand around the rocks, no crushed critters !

If you start doing the math on some tanks you wouldnt' want to keep one ! Like mine...

55 pounds of LS
100 pounds of LR
45 gallons of saltwater
2 pounds of fish? heh
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Old 09-15-2004, 02:10 PM   #7
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Is bad... Stuff will get caught in the squares...
The bottom layer of the sandbed is normally anoxic and has a reduced amount of critters moving around in it anyway. What exactly would get caught in the squares and how would it be detrimental to the tank?

I could understand screening placed within the sandbed, as that would create a barrier that the infauna could not get through, but eggcrate is not restrictive in this manner. Even if so, I think if detritus or some other material was building up at the very bottom of the sandbed there will problems regardless of eggcrate being present or not.
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Old 09-15-2004, 03:40 PM   #8
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There are many people that build "stands" for their rocks out of PVC which is placed under the sand , it would be the same as adding egg crate. It is perfectly safe. I use eggcrate in my prop tank as substrate and I love it

And if you are worring about rocks shifting you can even ziptie them to the Eggcrate to ensure that then don't move.
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Old 09-17-2004, 12:42 AM   #9
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Here's a pic of what I did so far...

Now I just need to decide if I should use it or not.
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Old 09-17-2004, 12:42 AM   #10
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Well I wouldn't...
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Old 09-17-2004, 01:40 AM   #11
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I don't think the side would get damaged. With the weight of the water pushing against the rock I don't think it could possibly fall fast enough to crack the side. Even if it could you would need a pretty tall piece of rock weighing like 30# to crack the side (considering it isn't tempered which most should be I believe).
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Old 09-17-2004, 11:02 AM   #12
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Well I wouldn't...
Why not? I inquired before as to what "stuff" would get caught in the squares as you mentioned before. At the very bottom of a sandbed, if you are getting a major buildup of detritus, you have much bigger problems to worry about then egg-crate material. Regardless, the egg-crate is no different than having a regular sand bottom...any infauna that may dip into the anoxic layers do not move strictly laterally anyway.

IMO, it is not necessary (stack your base on the glass, then add the subsrate) BUT if it makes you feel safer, I would use it.
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Old 09-17-2004, 12:20 PM   #13
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I've never even considered the possibility of the bottom of the tank getting damaged this way.. it just doesn't seem like an issue. I can't imagine it causing any problems if you do decide to go with it, but those could be famous last words so IMO it's an unnecessary risk.
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Old 09-17-2004, 01:22 PM   #14
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You could even cut a few pieces of PVC pipe short to lift it off the bottom a little. Then it would become a total non-factor.
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Old 09-17-2004, 01:49 PM   #15
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Using the eggcrate or other support system is just cheap insurance against a rockslide. On the off chance that a rock hit the bottom glass hard enough to break it, the eggcrate distributes the pressure and nothing happens.

In reality, it take a lot to break that glass anyway. One of the LFS near me has two 40g tank with live rock. He literally drops the rocks right into the tanks and then bang around with no ill effect.

Regardless, I used eggcrate on the bottom of my new 10g nano tank since I could not verify if the glass was tempered or not. I wish I raise the eggcrate above the bottom of the tank, but it is too late to worry about it now.
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Old 09-17-2004, 05:27 PM   #16
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i dont see the point in using it if you have doubts about it...it will be a royal pain to take out once everything is in there
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Old 09-17-2004, 06:55 PM   #17
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i dont see the point in using it if you have doubts about it...
I don't see why there are doubts, people use it all the time, although I would be interested to hear and discuss specific negative issues that could arise. It is also used to have a sandbed with larger sandbed digging livestock to block them from going too deep. www.wetwebmedia.com has a whole FAQ mentioning using it for a variety of applications.
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Old 09-17-2004, 07:39 PM   #18
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I think its a great idea. When your aragonite sandbed starts to dissolve you don't know how it will affect your structure. (unless you stack the rocks on the glass bottom). Some folks use pvc stands under the eggcrate to raise it off the tank bottom. You could drill holes in the PVC to prevent stagnant water. The great thing about using the stands is that you do not waste alot of rock under the sand. I wish I had done it but learned about it later on.
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Old 09-17-2004, 08:42 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by MattP725
I don't think the side would get damaged. With the weight of the water pushing against the rock I don't think it could possibly fall fast enough to crack the side. Even if it could you would need a pretty tall piece of rock weighing like 30# to crack the side (considering it isn't tempered which most should be I believe).
I'm not sure if most tanks are tempered all around. Mine is only tempered on the bottom... its a AGA tank.
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Old 09-18-2004, 11:15 PM   #20
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Then why are you asking then?
Use it...
and let us know how it turns out..
I gave my reasons why I wouldn't..
I don't see the benifits of it at all..
I dont' see any side effects of nto using it.
My rock is on my glass. No problems.
I think it would be a problem IMHO...
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