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  1. #1
    Senior Member nbreau's Avatar
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    Aquascaping question

    Hi all,

    I have a 77gallon tank that I will be filling with 4-6 inches of southdown for a deep sand bed along with 90lbs of liverock and have 2 questions:

    1 - do i need to rinse the southdown or just toss it into the tank.

    2 - I know that I should'nt lay the rock onto the sand, but do i need to lay it onto the bottom of the tank and hide the bottom 6" of the rock with sand ? What do most people do not to burrie all their rock in a DSB... what about using eggcrates just bellow the sand top and laying the rock on that ? Just looking for a little clarity on this subject...

    thanks,
    Nick.

  2. #2
    ijo
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    I would definitely rinse the Southdown before adding it to your tank.

    About the live rock.. Some people just add their live rock on top of the sand bed but this may cause future rock slides ... something you don't want to happen. You can either use a bunch of pieces of PVC joined together... or get yourself some base rock and burry that in your sand bed. Hope this helps

    IJO

  3. #3
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    I'm not familiar with Southdown's grain size but if it's anything like the sugar sand beware!!! Rinse the hell out of it. Put it in 5 gallon buckets and use the hose outside to rinse it about 10 times. If you don't, your water turns milk like and may never settle out. Your water will cloud initially even with rinsing but will settle out within 48 hours.
    True Perc

  4. #4
    Senior Member nbreau's Avatar
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    okay, thanks all.

    If i willed the tank with 3" of southdown, added the rock and then added another 3" do you think that it would provide enough suport for the liverock wihout having to resort to pvc ? The last thing I want is piping sticking out everywhere...

  5. #5
    Senior Member tang_man_montreal's Avatar
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    Actually... if I may interject here.....

    The general concensous on Southdown is NOT to rinse it....
    The fine particle sizes in the sand are needed.

    When I put the Southdown in my tank, I did much reading regarding this topic, and after much investigation, decided NOT to rinse the southdown...

    If the water is added to the tank correctly, You can even get it so the tank doesn't even cloud up at all... I posted a step by step howto on reefcentral HERE .

    I couldn't be happier... Look through the link and see for yourself.


  6. #6
    Senior Member tang_man_montreal's Avatar
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    Oh... also, I did not lay down any pvc under my sand to support the rock structure either.

    I don't plan on getting any burrowing fish, so I don't expect the rock to shift.

  7. #7
    Senior Member Fishysan's Avatar
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    You should not rinse caribsea reef sand, or oolithic sand, be it caribsea, or southdown. Like tang man said, you want that granularity of "silt" sand in there too. I didn't rinse any sands I used.

    the rock will shift, but slowly.. I pushed old old live rock right down into the sand and used that as "stands" for the live rock. That way it's resting on hard stuff. Also helps seed the sand.

    It will all settle out with a bit of patience, and also, if you add live rock it will clear quickly. The trick is to add the sand to the tank BEFORE the water, then add water carefully (garbage bag, bucket, etc.) on top of the sand.

    I've even dumped bags of fine sand (oolithic aragonite, same as southdown) directly into a full tank (empty of livestock though) and it made some NICE MILK!! But it settled out over a few days.
    Fishysan ><>
    ---
    180g display main floor, 150g trough, 75g, 20g in basement
    SPS, LPS, softies, many clams & 14 fish
    main: 250w AB DE HQI x 3, 5' x 3 VHO actinic - trough: 400w venki

  8. #8
    Senior Member nbreau's Avatar
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    As far as ordering goes when setting up my tank does adding these in the following order sound troublesome in any way ?

    1 - add 2.5" of sand (SD)
    2 - add about 5" of water
    3 - add LR and aquascape
    4 - a 2"-3" more of sand (SD)
    5 - finish filling tank with water.

  9. #9
    Senior Member tang_man_montreal's Avatar
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    If you want a milkshake.....

    Why are you adding 1/2 the sand at first, and then the other 1/2 later? Why not add it all at once, using the garbage bag method?

    This is how I do it:

    1) add ALL sand.
    2) add 3/4 of water volume in tank
    3) add and aquascape rock.
    4) sit back, and look at nice clear water!

  10. #10
    Senior Member nbreau's Avatar
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    Would'nt I get a milkshake when adding the rock to the sand ?

    Since I'm not using supports I was going to try and get the rock 2-3" deep to try and get some stability, and i figured this would cause cloudiness....

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