Thanks for video, I watched all 3.
Did you pickup yours yet? So your going to sift it then rinse it?
Alright here it goes this is exactly what I will be doing, with explanations.
I am going to 2-3 bags of MGOCPM from Lowes or Homedepot. I will sift all the bags to removed the large particles. I read on a very thurough post on here or fishtanktv.com (can't remember) that if sifted we will come away with 40% of the bag. If thats the case I want to buy more just in case, that is the reason for 2-3 bags.
After sifting, I will soak the potting mixed in various 5 gallon buckets. I soak all the dirt for 2-3 days. Apparently we will notice some oil residue sitting on type, and the water will reek of ammonia. The person on that post i mentioned aboved said to do this again, or until no ammonia scent is present.
After soaking and rinsing, this guy did the whole tarp air dry process, but I will not do that. I am one of those I want it now type people, so I will bake in the oven at a low temp to speed up the drying process. After that is done I will let sit and cool down.
After the dirt is ready to go, I will will sprinkle muriate of potash (potassium sulfate, and if you want any just let me know), and crush coral (calcium carbonate, in place of dolomite) on the bare bottom of the tank. I will create a border with the cap that I will be using which is pool filter sand that is already being used. This will help with adding beneficial bacteria, since it is already a cycled substrate. I also would suggest you to do the same, to help with any possible ammonia, but that is the point and rinsing and drying the dirt.
For clay, I will take the plunge and added the TerraCotta clay from Michaels and AC Moore, unless you may have extra (I remember you mentioning that you had some coming in). I will take the clay and let it air dry till it gets hard. I will then break it up in many pieces and then ground it up in a coffee grinder that I use for some of my fish food. I will then mix the clay in the dry dirt, and them wet it and then add to the tank.
I may be quite generous with the dirt I make because I want a pretty thick layer and then a nice layer of pool filter sand.
When I fill the tank, I will fill it the slowest I have ever filled up a tank! Lol. I do not want to stir up any of the substrate. I will plant as normal, and when all fille up, I will run the filter.
2-3 bags of MGOCPM: $20-$30
Muriate of Potash: Free
Crushed Coral Small bag: Roughly $10
TerraCotta Clay from Michaels: $9-$10
I will spend roughly $50 on a fantastic substrate for my planted aquariums (55 Gallon Low Tech and 10 Gallon High Tech)
Since we are both doing this at the same time, and we are in the same area, we should go in on some of this. There is no way I will use a full bag of Cruched Coral (Don't have any reef tanks), and possibly the Miracle Gro. Its up to you though.