Black Substrate?? - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old 10-10-2018, 02:17 AM Thread Starter
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Black Substrate??

I am getting a 75 gallon Aqueon tank and stand shortly. It will be mostly a quite a few Tetras and 2 Angel fish. I would like to have a black substrate that I can put a few live plants in nothing massive as far as plants. I do not want to have to deal with dirt I sure hope. I wish there was a very small gravel. I may have to use sand but would prefer gravel. Need feedback on what to use for a black substrate.


Thanks Bill
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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old 10-10-2018, 11:52 AM
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I use Seachem black sand for my 200l and like it as a planting medium. It is good but expensive. Next time around I am going to try some Black Diamond Blasting Sand. I have never tried it but others recommend it highly. Just do a search on those terms and you'll get more info.

Black sand will make your fish look awesome!

As an aside, I don't worry about having a "planted substrate" because I dose ferts in the column.
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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old 10-10-2018, 02:19 PM
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BDBS, Black Diamond blasting sand. Inert, cheap, easy to plant, fairly clean, completely aquarium safe and looks great. $8 for a 50 pound bag.
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post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old 10-11-2018, 12:00 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks Kubla I will check on that.

Bill

I checked with Tractor Supply they have two different bags. One is fine and the other is medium which would I want to have a few live plants in?


Thank you Bill

Last edited by Darkblade48; 10-12-2018 at 12:08 AM. Reason: Please use the edit function for back to back posts to keep threads cleaner
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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old 10-11-2018, 01:15 AM
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I used the BDBS Medium grit in my 20 Gallon Long and it's worked GREAT ! Very little rinsing as well... No more Eco-Complete for me, this stuff is cheaper, looks better, TONS easier to plant stuff in..... Can't really find any negatives to it !

Good Luck !!
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post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old 10-11-2018, 01:25 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks to all who responded great info


Thanks again Bill
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post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old 10-11-2018, 07:09 AM
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I used black diamond. After hearing that sometimes there is petroleum product on this sand, I washed in a very weak solution of Dawn dish soap. We then rinsed it for about an hour using the garden hose. It was a mess. There were suds on the large pond of water we created in our back yard. We really used very little but it took quite a bit to rinse all the soap clean.
But, it does look amazing.
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post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old 10-11-2018, 07:19 AM
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I have no experience with BDBS. How sharp is it?
I am worried about scratching low iron tanks and about my cories.

Sorry for the thread hijack and the second-guessing.
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post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old 10-11-2018, 07:30 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OVT View Post
I have no experience with BDBS. How sharp is it?
I am worried about scratching low iron tanks and about my cories.

Sorry for the thread hijack and the second-guessing.
sharp enough to scratch glass if it gets caught between a magnet

ccories do fine in 20/40 grit from my experience. that cory has been in tanks with BDBS for 2.5+ years
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post #10 of 13 (permalink) Old 10-11-2018, 09:32 AM
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From what I've seen, the medium grit has some larger shards & if you're skin is soft/thin you can easily cut yourself.

A week ago I was cleaning out a nano QT tank and was trying to crush some old snail shells & a sharp piece of the coal slag got embedded in my skin.

Yeah, it looks good but there is a oil residue that comes out if you use warm/hot water. Use a white bucket and you'll see what I mean.
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post #11 of 13 (permalink) Old 10-11-2018, 01:46 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OVT View Post
I have no experience with BDBS. How sharp is it?
I am worried about scratching low iron tanks and about my cories.

Sorry for the thread hijack and the second-guessing.
It can definitely scratch glass, but the OP is looking for black sand or gravel, I don't know of any that won't scratch low iron glass. My cory habrosus have no issues.

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fishfeet View Post
I used black diamond. After hearing that sometimes there is petroleum product on this sand, I washed in a very weak solution of Dawn dish soap. We then rinsed it for about an hour using the garden hose. It was a mess. There were suds on the large pond of water we created in our back yard. We really used very little but it took quite a bit to rinse all the soap clean.
But, it does look amazing.
I've had a slight amount of an oily film on the surface when first using it. I've never heard that is was petroleum. I would think that it was a petroleum product we would have heard from folks that have actually had issues with it in there tank. I've used it with no rinsing with no issues. I wouldn't recommend that but it caused no problems in my tank YMMV. The biggest problem I've had are all the little particles that don't want to sink when you're rinsing or adding it to the tank.
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post #12 of 13 (permalink) Old 10-12-2018, 07:38 AM
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The nat geo black sand from petsmart works really well too. That’s what I recently purchased for my 90gal.


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post #13 of 13 (permalink) Old 10-12-2018, 01:49 PM
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Hands down, BDBS.

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