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Hello,

I now have a 44x31x33h nano tank and I'm planing to build a planted tank, carpeting with HC probably, using yati wood and having shrimps of all kinds.

Since it might be affordable for a nano tank I almost decided to use ADA substrate but I have questions about it.

What I have in my mind is:

1st layer: JBL Proscape Volcano Mineral (3 liters)
2nd layer: JBL Proscape Volcano Powder (250g)
3th layer: ADA Amazonia Normal Type (9 liters)
4th layer: ADA Amazonia Powder Type (3 liters)


The reason I want to use powder type on top is to make it easier to plant HC and secondly (from what I heard) using powder type in nano tanks is a good idea for scaping. Smaller the size gives it a depth in nano.

So my questions are:

1. Ada Power Sand Special - It's really expensive here (even "S" version - 2 liters) costs almost same as 9 liters of normal type) so this is why am I considering using the JBL Volcano Mineral+Powder as equivalent but are they really equivalent ? They may be really good by on their own but I'm not 100% sure about mixing them together. I would appreciate some advices especially from experienced ones.

2. After adding powder type on top, would it be possible to seperate them (the normal type and the powder) later? If so, how ? By drying and electing the powder ?

3. If I were to add powder bacteria (if I can find some) which layer should it exactly go? Before my first layer or after my second layer or right between them?

4. Would I need anything else like cable-heater for substare because I've already one but not sure to use it or not. I've never seen anyone using it under ADA substrate before.

Thanks all by now...
 

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I'm assuming your tank dimensions are in centimeters and you are not in the US? If it's inches, not sure if that would qualify as a nano, IMO.

Honestly, I would just use the ADA Powder type in a nano and skip the rest of the additives. The ADA will do a fantastic job all on its own. I don't have experience using substrate heaters but any small (50w would probably be perfect) standard tube heater would work well. Hydor Theo heaters are small, the 25w and 50w are only 7 inches (about 18 cm). I apologize for not being more helpful.
 

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I pretty much agree with RyRob. You really don't need Power Sand, AS does very well on its own. The JBL substrate would be fine underneath. There's no reason not to use it if you want. I'm not sure how you could separate the different types very easily after they've been in the tank. Maybe with a sieve of some sort?

Powdered bacteria, at least one like Bacter 100, would go on the bottom of the tank before adding any substrate, but Power Sand and AS are loaded with bacteria so the addition of the other source might be unnecessary.

No need for a substrate heater. They're of dubious benefit and fallen out of use quite some years ago. You'll have good circulation throughout the substrate with AS and with the larger size base layer.
 
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