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Old 10-19-2007, 10:25 AM   #1
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To mix or not to mix? Aquasoil and SMS

I have acquired about 1/2 bag Aquasoil Amazonia. I have 60+ lbs of SMS. I have a 30gal tank (30 x 18 x12) that this will be used in. I really don't think that 1/2 bag of AA is going to be sufficient for depth (please correct me if I'm wrong, I have no experience with the stuff). So, I was thinking I should use all the AA, and fill in what's needed by mixing in SMS. I guess the other option would be to use only SMS. I think that the plants could really benefit from the AA though, as I'll have 2x24wt T5HO lights over the tank.

Thoughts?
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Old 10-19-2007, 10:34 PM   #2
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I'd save the Aquasoil for a nano where it can be of real benefit, and just use the SMS in this tank. If you really want to use the Aquasoil in the 30 gallon, I'd purchase enough more use it by itself.
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Old 10-21-2007, 10:36 AM   #3
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I would do that, but I got the Aquasoil at an auction, and it was real cheap. I had only planned on using SMS, but I figure that I could enhance it by adding the Aquasoil. I've already put (plenty) of money in the stand and canopy for this project, and really wasn't looking to ad more expense.
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Old 10-21-2007, 01:50 PM   #4
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A few of the moderators in our local group are trying Eco/ADA mix. ADA has one big thing going for it - it grows plants extremely well - and LOTS of little things against it - it hard to keep some plants rooted in it - it is easy to crush into powder when moving things around - water clouds very easily, etc.

The thought of mixing it was to reduce the problems while still getting some benefit from the additional nutrients.

I say go for it. AS is not that much more than any other aquarium substrate (thinking ECO, Flourite, etc).
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Old 10-22-2007, 11:23 PM   #5
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I've been using Aquasoil for several years now and I simply love the stuff (especially the powder type). I've come up with a rough formula to determine how much is necessary based on area: four liters per square foot of tank footprint. I prefer a somewhat deep bed so you can probably get away with three liters per square foot, but it might be a bit shallow and make it difficult to keep some of the more buoyant plants rooted.

I'm guessing your 30G is 30" long by 12" deep by 18" tall. If I'm right then you've got 2.5 square feet of footprint which would need from 7.5 to 10 liters of Aquasoil for proper coverage. The large bags of Aquasoil are nine liters and the small bags are three liters. So if you've got half of a nine liter bag then you might be able to get away with purchasing one small bag (just $10 at AquaForest). If three liters is not enough the nine liter bags are $26, not a great deal for the best plant substrate out there.

AquaForest also carries the new Aquasoil Amazonia II which is designed to reduce the cloudiness often associated with using regular Aquasoil, especially in places where the tap water is alkaline. The price is the same and ADA claims that it performs just as well as regular Aquasoil so there's no reason not to check it out if you want to avoid cloudy water.

Hope this helps
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Old 10-22-2007, 11:54 PM   #6
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Thanks for the formula for approximate need for the AS. I'll look into it, but I'd really like to get this tank setup shortly.

Quote:
Originally Posted by travis simonson
I'm guessing your 30G is 30" long by 12" deep by 18" tall.
Actually, the tank is 30long x 18wide x 12 tall. It's a very sweet layout, which makes me more anxious to get it setup. I'm thinking apistogramma cacatuoides as my main specimens...
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