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Discussion Starter #1
sand is pretty expensive nowadays. Does look good but... definatly over priced. so i was just wondering can any sand be used?
 

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I found that the best sand for the money is Pool filter sand :) only about $8 for a 50 pound bag , and already fairly clean , just a few good rinses to get clear water ...
 

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Pool filter sand does work well. In my experience, though, it's a lot of maintenance to keep a white sand looking good. Debris just sits on top of it, and is very visible. A sort of dark layer can build up over time, too. Might want to keep that in mind.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
thanks for the replys.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
where do you get it from?
 

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Pool supply stores like Leslies, or places like walmart and home depot sell it too. You can also use playground sand which is a little darker, or sandblast slag which you can find in black. The playground sand you can get at hardware stores, the slag you can find at equipment rentals.
 

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Lowe's, Home Depot, and Super Walmart all carry it in my area. Some independent hardwares stores and then of course swimming pool specialty stores although you may pay a little more at a pool store.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
ok thanks alot guys much appreciated :)
 

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back in 2004 i went to a place that recieved hardly any human traffic (cars, feet, whatever) so i thought it could be a least polluted as possible. Collected a bunch of pretty fine dirt. Took it home, sifted it to get the finer stuff that basically became sand. Plants loved it because of its natural nutrients i think. Heres an old pic


And Now I have a 46 that I've been cycling for the past month, and I have sand that i collected from the sand dunes in it. I think it is really rich in iron, as a magnet will pickup grains of sand. But when I didnt have any plants in it, brown algae broke out pretty quick-like and was mostly just growing on the sand.

...so dont know if that was useful at all
 

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Discussion Starter #13
back in 2004 i went to a place that recieved hardly any human traffic (cars, feet, whatever) so i thought it could be a least polluted as possible. Collected a bunch of pretty fine dirt. Took it home, sifted it to get the finer stuff that basically became sand. Plants loved it because of its natural nutrients i think. Heres an old pic


And Now I have a 46 that I've been cycling for the past month, and I have sand that i collected from the sand dunes in it. I think it is really rich in iron, as a magnet will pickup grains of sand. But when I didnt have any plants in it, brown algae broke out pretty quick-like and was mostly just growing on the sand.

...so dont know if that was useful at all
Well there is a big pile of sand in the woods near my house. So do you think I could get a bucket of that and give it a good good clean? im trying to save as much money as possible at the min haha. ;)
 

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yea why not, just rinse it as long as you can bear it to make sure its clean of everything, and as least cloudy as you can make it.

Then I cooked it in a frying pan on a bbq burner. I didnt actually cook the sand for this 46 gallon (which may or maynot haunt me later on) but i am adding more sand to build the aquascape up more, but i got a large tin foil that you cook a turkey in. and am going to be baking it in that.

I collect substrate because i dont want to pay for it either haha.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
I think its building sand though haha. Ive got it here now I just dont want to put it in until im 100% sure it wont kill my fish or make the tank really cloudy
 

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yea why not, just rinse it as long as you can bear it to make sure its clean of everything, and as least cloudy as you can make it.

Then I cooked it in a frying pan on a bbq burner. I didnt actually cook the sand for this 46 gallon (which may or maynot haunt me later on) but i am adding more sand to build the aquascape up more, but i got a large tin foil that you cook a turkey in. and am going to be baking it in that.

I collect substrate because i dont want to pay for it either haha.
Why do you need to cook the sand?

And does regular playground sand from Home Depot need root tabs or should it have sufficient nutrients?
 

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You don't need to cook playground or PFS sand you just do that if you thing it's contaminated with some parasite usually from an already established tank.

Playground sand does not have any type of nutrients you will need to use something for water column dosing and root tabs for any rooted plants you might have (just stick one into the sand near it's roots every six to eight months).

Depending on your tank size and plants pferts.com has a nice NPK+"M" ("M is trace) combo that works well and is easy to use and the Seachem line of NPK+trace works well.

- Brad
 

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I have never used root tabs. The only thing I used was liquid dosing when I used sifted dirt. But when I dosed the 45 I have with natural dune sand algae broke out so I think my sand has quite a sufficient nutrients as the plants grow fine
 

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i've used sand before and it was a mess. and it really is hard to keep the sand at that pristine color. i had sand that was on the bottom turn black. i'm sure it can be done but it's a hassle.
 

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I say go for it, it looks amazing. If you can get some high quality sand and rinse it well. When you first put it in the tank, just wrap the filter intake with some blue filter media, or some polyester matting that goes in quilts and blankets so you get about 3 or 4 wraps, and it will clear and keep your water crystal clear.
 
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