Keeping substrates seperated - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 09-18-2008, 06:01 AM Thread Starter
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Keeping substrates seperated

How would you keep sand from mixing with other substrate and what would you use to do it and where do you get it?
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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 09-18-2008, 10:25 AM
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I've never been able to keep them separated. So I gave up on sand plus another substrate, I went with all Florite Black Sand.
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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 09-18-2008, 01:11 PM Thread Starter
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someone must have had some success?
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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 09-18-2008, 05:38 PM
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I think some people have moderate success with separating areas of sand and other substrates, but if you're looking to layer sand above a coarser substrate, you might as well give up now, they always mix, especially during the planting process. Eventually the coarser substrate ends up on top.
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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 09-18-2008, 05:54 PM
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To have any chance, you would have to have a thick layer of each, 1+ inch. As you plant, unplant and vacuum, the layers tend to mix. If you plant seldom after the initial planting and are careful about vacuuming, it could stay somewhat separated.

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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 09-18-2008, 06:23 PM
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The tanks I've seen maintain any sort of separation over a long period of time had the two separated with hardscape, as in entirely walled off with rocks.

Personally, I tried a "sand river" once and never again- IME it was impossible to keep the 2 from mixing and I really did not care for that look.





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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 09-18-2008, 06:42 PM
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I'm going with the assumption you want to create a sand path or have a sandy area seperate from the other substrate. I use a thin piece of clear plastic to keep my grass where I want it. I intentionally cut mine higher than the substrate to keep the runners from going over. I suppose you could use the same principle to keep sand and gravel seperate and just cover it with rocks or hidden with plants like I did. I found mine at a place called Magnum Wood here in town. It's a specialty shop for architech students. I ended up having to buy an entire sheet 6' X 12". I have 3 pieces left over - 2 @ 6' x 3 1/4", 1 @ 6' X 2 1/8". I'd be happy to send you a piece if you want, just send me a pm.

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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 09-18-2008, 08:44 PM Thread Starter
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well i ended up putting sand in the tank about 6" of it to bring the bottom up to where i wanted it. and i used fiberglass screen mesh stuff and cut out the shape i wanted then put rocks on top of the mesh. maybe it will work if not ill just have sand on the bottom of the tank lol. let me post a pic.
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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 09-18-2008, 08:45 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cah925 View Post
I'm going with the assumption you want to create a sand path or have a sandy area seperate from the other substrate. I use a thin piece of clear plastic to keep my grass where I want it. I intentionally cut mine higher than the substrate to keep the runners from going over. I suppose you could use the same principle to keep sand and gravel seperate and just cover it with rocks or hidden with plants like I did. I found mine at a place called Magnum Wood here in town. It's a specialty shop for architech students. I ended up having to buy an entire sheet 6' X 12". I have 3 pieces left over - 2 @ 6' x 3 1/4", 1 @ 6' X 2 1/8". I'd be happy to send you a piece if you want, just send me a pm.

thanks very much for your offer, i just would have not been tall enough for what i need anyways... but thanks again
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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 09-18-2008, 09:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MostHated View Post
well i ended up putting sand in the tank about 6" of it to bring the bottom up to where i wanted it. and i used fiberglass screen mesh stuff and cut out the shape i wanted then put rocks on top of the mesh. maybe it will work if not ill just have sand on the bottom of the tank lol. let me post a pic.
Wait? YOur substrate is 6 inches thick? Umm.... you are likely in for an anerobic factory of toxins...
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post #11 of 12 (permalink) Old 09-18-2008, 10:10 PM Thread Starter
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yeah they make sulfur, i have never had to much trouble with this if you keep them vacumed regular.
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post #12 of 12 (permalink) Old 09-19-2008, 10:05 PM
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I plan on using sand as well. I'm doing a half moon of sand in one of the corners of my 46 gal bow front. I plan on cutting peices of plexi, about 2" or so high. I've collected River Rocks that I will silicone to the top of the plexi, stacking the rocks sort of like a terrace. The plexi will end up looking sort of like a hexagon, but I'll stack the rocks for a more natural look. I realize the idea in itself is not "natural", just think it will look pretty sweet if done tastefully.

Any thoughts or problems with my theory before I give it a go this weekend?
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