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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi Everyone
last week I bought some (red sea flora base) I was upset when(after I put it in my tank) I realized it needs to be replaced each year. Dark Cobra suggested I take a small amount of the rs freeze and thaw it a few times and see what happens. I did just as he asked and this am I took some of it and squeezed it together as per instructions. I had to squeeze with some force but when I put enough force it turned to mud. Im not sure if it had just sat in water that the results would have been any different?
So Chris what do the results mean? I have a feeling I should start wrapping my mind around taking down the whole thing next yr and setting it back up with different base?
Thanks
patrick
 

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I've seen a few threads from you about the substrate. I'm not trying to be a smart a$$ or anything, but I think you should just relax and enjoy your tank and worry about it if/and when it happens. I think your are worrying for nothing because a) if it's going to happen, then there is nothing you can do to halt the inevitable b) it's a year or could be 2 years away. Your tank looks good!
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Hi Brad
don't think your a smart ass at all. I just wanted to let Chris know that I did listen to his advise and did as he asked. Actually Ive done just as youve stated. I love the way my tank looks now things are growing the fish are happy and everything seems to be stable. Worse case is I set a day aside to replace it. That would also give me the opportunity to change anything I dont like.
Thanks
patrick
 

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Hi Brad
don't think your a smart ass at all. I just wanted to let Chris know that I did listen to his advise and did as he asked. Actually Ive done just as youve stated. I love the way my tank looks now things are growing the fish are happy and everything seems to be stable. Worse case is I set a day aside to replace it. That would also give me the opportunity to change anything I dont like.
Thanks
patrick
Cool. Glad your enjoying the tank because it looks good from the pictures you posted in the other thread.
 

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my question? what is wrong with mud? i've done a mineralized top soil tank now and capped with tan gravel it looks great... red mud might look kinda weird. maybe clayish so i could understand that aspect but you could cap it with gravel or similar covered flourite.. it may still function properly as a substrate in mud form..

just a thought
 

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I just woke up, saw this before the coffee kicked in, and thought "huh, I don't remember posting any test results". :hihi:

Thanks for sharing the results. Yes, it means that what you've heard about it breaking down over a year or two is probably correct. Freezing/thawing just vastly accelerates the process.

+1 to Brad's advice. You own it, and it's already in your tank; so might as well use and enjoy it while it lasts. And the tank does look very good!
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks Chris and HD
well the sub in my tank is already around 3 inches so if I added another layer wouldnt that be too much? From my understanding from the reviews once it turns to mud it starts getting into the water stream and basically turns the water murky.
Thanks Chris
Im vary happy with my tank and if I had it to do over again would I choose this no but Im going to enjoy it while it last. Plus I figure by the time its time to replace it ill know more what Im doing lol.
 

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lasts a long time

I used the Red Sea Florabase as a filler addition on my oldest tank when I first started tanking plants beyond Java's. Adding it started in January 2008 and ended on 5/9/2008. The tank already had normal to smaller river gravel at about 1.25" thick and was already stocked. Using a 32oz plastic drink cup I added 2 cups scattering the 'little brown bunny turds' on top of the gravel and adding more as it worked its way into a mix showing gravel through the fill. Stopping at about a 50/50 mix.

Yes it has broken down, but not all of it, and my water has never clouded to date. (except for an algae bloom that had nothing to do with the sub). Much of it is still in pellet form. The tank is a low tech planted I use for breeding angels and raising spawns. Root tabs are added 3 times a year and the mix is still in it.

My experience having it in a mixed sub wasn't/isn't a complete mess.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
thanks wkndracer
that makes me feel alot better. If all it does is break down thats no biggie. I love the color doesnt matter to me if it stays in the bunny poop form or just turns to mud. Plus thats been 3 yrs for you. Im sure by then Ill be ready from a change anyway.
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It's not a stupid question at all. Many substrate makers tout their nutrient content.

But regardless of how much nutrient is technically present in a clay substrate, they cannot be released and made available to plants, unless it also breaks down.

So any long-lasting clay substrate doesn't provide much nutrient at all, regardless of composition, even when brand new. They work only because nutrients from other sources stick to their surface, collecting them where plant roots can conveniently access them.

Personally, I find that's enough. And prefer long-lasting substrates that always provide consistent results with regular addition of nutrients, rather than relying on something that can run out.
 
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