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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-16-2015, 12:58 PM Thread Starter
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sand

I see people using sand to make neat looking river bottom type aquascapes. they divided the sand and nutrient rich substrate with cardboard before removing the cardboard and leaving with nice separated substrate contrast.

can anyone tell me what the that sand is or what sands you can use for this?
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-16-2015, 05:23 PM
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Pool filter sand usually


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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-16-2015, 08:40 PM
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Play sand for less fancy people like me.


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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-17-2015, 02:16 AM Thread Starter
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so what is that $17-$29 sand they sell at the pet store.
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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-17-2015, 02:20 AM
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Originally Posted by xFaKx View Post
so what is that $17-$29 sand they sell at the pet store.
$17-$29 play sand with a fancy picture on the label!

If you want black get Diamond Abrasives Blasting Sand medium grade. It's $7 for a 50lb bag. I get mine at Tractor Supply.

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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-17-2015, 02:29 AM
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so what is that $17-$29 sand they sell at the pet store.
Yep, extremely overpriced sand. But do have some nicer colors available. Would still purchase at LFS bulk bins for different colors at cheaper price.

Go to a hardware store (Home Depot, Lowes) for play sand for cheap.
Silica sand is fine too. Pool filter sand is preferred over play sand, cost a little more, but usually looks nicer and is a lot cleaner.

Make sure to rinse all new sand until the water is clear or your tank will become a dust cloud (fish won't be too happy in that cloud either).
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-17-2015, 02:30 AM
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Sand can be from any of several sources.

If the parent material was limestone, calcite, dolomite or related materials, the sand will add minerals to the water, and raise the pH.

Many sands in the building trades are silica sand. This is safe in the aquarium, but does tend to encourage diatoms for a while. Comes in many grades. Usually is off white, somewhere from cream to tan. Can be fairly bright white, too.
Pool filter sand and many others has been graded so all the particles are the same size. The bag will be labeled. These are the best. With all the particles the same size water can flow between them, bringning an exchange of O2, CO2 and ferts through the substrate.

Play sand is usually not graded, and can have a lot of finer particles. This can pack down when used as a substrate, and contribute to anaerobic pockets.
If you buy play sand, and start washing out the fines you may wash away as much as half of your purchase.
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-17-2015, 12:50 PM Thread Starter
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good info thanks!
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