Changed out my substrate today to some Prochoice soilmaster from LESCO. I got the red standard soil master. They had a four pack sample with prochoice soilmaster select, regular prochoice soilmaster, promound packing clay, and rapid dry.
The Rapid Dry is very fine, less than .5mm, too fine for substrate IMO. The Soilmaster Select has a nice uniform grain size about 1mm, but seemed a little fine for my taste and application. The Prochoice Soilmaster grain size is not as uniform as the select and is slightly larger with a mix of size from 1-3mm. All three of these products are red. The Promound packing clay is black but not uniform in size all, ranging from dust particles to 5mm+ sizes. The Soilmaster select and regular soilmaster also are available in charcoal color but was not in stock at the store by my house.
The tank I put the Prochoice Soilmaster has a standard 75/90 gal footprint of 48" x 18". I used a substrate calculator for Flourite; for a 3 inch bed it said I would need 90lbs. Well I bought 2 50lb bags of the Prochoice Soilmaster.
I filled a 5 gallon bucket half full of the Soilmaster and washed it until ran clear. I repeated this, put approx. 75lbs of the Soilmaster in the tank. This made for a tapered depth of 3.5 inches in front and 4.5 inches + in the rear, there are also a few hills over 6 inches. One bag would be enough if you plan to top dress it. I filled the tank with water slowly and it was fairly clear. Not perfectly clear but I am sure it would settle/filter in a day. I am running my diatom filter on it now to clear it because I hate to wait for anything.
I found it easy to plant in and the plants seemed well anchored. Even the two big sword plants that have runners going out of the tank seem to be holding on.
I left a good layer mulm in the bottom, also I am going to dose every day (macros morning, micros evening) and watch the levels. Then go back to every other day once everything seems normal.
The bill was less than $26 for 100lbs including tax.
One note is it did reduce my KH by 2dKH, I buffered it back with some baking soda.