Eco or Blasting Media??? - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 22 (permalink) Old 07-05-2012, 04:19 AM Thread Starter
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Eco or Blasting Media???

So I got a 40B from the $1/gallon sale from PetCo and am debating between Eco-Complete or going with Black Blasting Media from Menards/Home Depot/Lowes. I'm going to go for a low-tech, non dirted tank this time. I don't mind adding root tabs in case I use stems, but I wanna stray away from them for this tank.

Now... I know I'll need around 40-50 lbs of the substrate...

Eco-Complete is $15 per 20lb bag... Black Blasting Media is $8 for a 50lb bag... so I'm leaning towards $8 versus $40-$60

I've heard the name "Black Diamond Blasting Media" but Menards doesn't carry Black Diamond and I'm hoping that this will work as well... and if not, please let me know

Here a pic of the blasting media that I'm referring to...


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post #2 of 22 (permalink) Old 07-05-2012, 04:45 AM
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if you don't want to add root tabs, use eco-complete, but if you just want non root-feeders and no root tabs, get the blasting media. that stuff looks mighty similar to black diamond/black beauty, you should be fine.
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post #3 of 22 (permalink) Old 07-05-2012, 05:03 AM
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if you don't want to add root tabs, use eco-complete, but if you just want non root-feeders and no root tabs, get the blasting media. that stuff looks mighty similar to black diamond/black beauty, you should be fine.
I would still use root tabs even with eco complete. EC seems to be lacking in any nutrients.


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post #4 of 22 (permalink) Old 07-05-2012, 05:07 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zefrik View Post
I would still use root tabs even with eco complete. EC seems to be lacking in any nutrients.
really? hm.
i think eco-complete has a pretty high CEC though, black diamond/whatever (like any sand) has NONE. less friendly to root feeders...
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post #5 of 22 (permalink) Old 07-05-2012, 06:11 AM
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In my opinion, if you're wanting to grow plants, then it's Eco Complete. There are many other areas to save money. I think the substrate is an important aspect of a planted tank and, therefore, is not the best place to cut corners. Eco Complete grows plants very nicely. I have it in all my tanks, including my low tech tanks without ferts.

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post #6 of 22 (permalink) Old 07-05-2012, 11:55 AM Thread Starter
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I was thinking of doing mostly ferns, moss, and anubias so substrate won't matter too much as long as I have ferts in the water column. Yes, I understand that Eco is better for plants, but I'm going to be adding dry ferts. All my tanks are dirt tanks, but I don't feel as if I would need dirt in this tank, but correct me if I'm wrong. Crypts had crossed my mind to be put in the tank, but then I would have to add root tabs for them

I'm already saving money on my stand by building my own... I'm just trying to save as much as I can with this build. Also going the SunSun filter route (HW-304B rated for 525gph) which will save me a little bit of money as well


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post #7 of 22 (permalink) Old 07-05-2012, 12:40 PM
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If you don't plan on having plants that are heavy root feeders, you can definitely go cheap.


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post #8 of 22 (permalink) Old 07-05-2012, 01:33 PM Thread Starter
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If you don't plan on having plants that are heavy root feeders, you can definitely go cheap.
Awesome... just what I was thinking since I won't have any heavy root feeders


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post #9 of 22 (permalink) Old 07-05-2012, 03:41 PM
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really? hm.
i think eco-complete has a pretty high CEC though, black diamond/whatever (like any sand) has NONE. less friendly to root feeders...
high cec yes but not ferts


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post #10 of 22 (permalink) Old 07-05-2012, 03:42 PM
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I would also recommend turface pro league MVP its a nice tan color that looks amazing under water, also has high cec and its super cheap, $13 for 50 pound bag, but the difference is how much more substrate you get, you would probably be fine with half the bag in your tank.


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post #11 of 22 (permalink) Old 07-05-2012, 04:56 PM Thread Starter
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I would also recommend turface pro league MVP its a nice tan color that looks amazing under water, also has high cec and its super cheap, $13 for 50 pound bag, but the difference is how much more substrate you get, you would probably be fine with half the bag in your tank.
That color looks nice! Natural color looks too close to my 60G with Flourite... the Red is too RED... but the NEW Heritage Red looks like a very nice deep red/brown color.

I think I'm going to have to stick with the black color as I don't have a tank with a black substrate and want to try it out. Plus, with my fauna choice I have in mind, I think it will make them POP real nicely


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post #12 of 22 (permalink) Old 07-07-2012, 12:59 PM Thread Starter
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One more question...

Should I rinse out the Blasting Media before placing it in the tank like you would with Flourite or PFS?


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post #13 of 22 (permalink) Old 07-07-2012, 01:48 PM
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at least put a sample in a bowl or bucket and wet test it for dusting.

some do, some don't, I check each bag as it can change with lower quality controls (remember) it's blasting media.


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post #14 of 22 (permalink) Old 07-07-2012, 02:38 PM
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That bag says "hard and sharp." Would it be safe for soft bellies and fish with whiskers/barbels?
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post #15 of 22 (permalink) Old 07-07-2012, 03:46 PM
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That bag says "hard and sharp." Would it be safe for soft bellies and fish with whiskers/barbels?
had Cory, various Loaches etc. over this stuff for over a year without barbel erosion or any other problems.


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