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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am thinking of doing sand slopes in my 55g. I am wanting to have glosso planted on it, and kind of do a faux iwagumi tank. Should I be worried about having 11" of sand? Are there any hazards? What could I do to make it not turn anaerobic? Would Malaysian trumpet snails go down that deep?


Thanks in advance!

-Caton
 

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I don't know about the snails. Maybe clams are an option. The only way I know of using sand would be dirt capped with sand. If that is the case, then I would do 6 in of sand, then dirt, and top that with sand. Then lack of oxygen might not be an issue.

Maybe think about: Sand may be hard to slope, especially during after/planting, because it moves around so easily. I liken it to building a sand castle underwater. The castle would end up as a nice little sand dune, but that 11in might distribute itself around your tank bottom.
 

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i would say that is alot of sand an will likely have problems with it such as going anerobic, constantly leveling itself out. why so deep if its in a norm 55g 11 inch is a huge slope dont ya think? why not try using a filler such as some plexiglass or something to fill the void so can still have it look deep but only have a few inches of substrate thus solving one big problem. if your still looking to make hills i would suggest putting some substrate in pantyhose or some kind of barrier to hold its shape until the roots provide enough strenght to hold the substrate from shifting well thats how i would do it to at least
 

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ps i never had any luck with clams they would live 6-12 months tops and would move a ton of gravel even up to pea size, if anyone else has had luck with them i would love to hear how they kept them an for how long ext ext.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I thought about doing a faux bottom to the tank. Any other opinions? If the snails go down that deep, it would get mixed up, giving it less of a chance of going anaerobic. I might just try to make the faux with silicone "bumps" to hold the sand in place.
 

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Just keep in mind that sand goes everywhere when disturbed; especially if you get the real fine stuff. I have some fine sand from Home Depot in my 29, and the stuff goes EVERYWHERE when it's disturbed--winds up covering my driftwood and rocks and it looks pretty bad.
 

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Why 11" though? You can get a fairly good slope with only 1 1/2" to 3". I don't even know if most sand would hold that kind of slope. I can definitely foresee problems with anything nearing 5 inches. Either way, if you use a couple inches, it is always good to run something through the sand to stir up the sediment, but therein lies your problem with holding the slope.

I think using some sort of artificial slope beneath the sand will be your best bet.
 

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Why 11" though? You can get a fairly good slope with only 1 1/2" to 3". I don't even know if most sand would hold that kind of slope. I can definitely foresee problems with anything nearing 5 inches. Either way, if you use a couple inches, it is always good to run something through the sand to stir up the sediment, but therein lies your problem with holding the slope.

I think using some sort of artificial slope beneath the sand will be your best bet.
Certainly can't disagree with any of these comments.
Why 11" of substrate, especially in a 55 gal. ?
Never heard of of that much, of any kind of substrate in any size home aquarium - it's just asking for trouble, particularly using sand.
Limit your slope to 3" or 4" at the rear - sufficient to grow almost any plantings - and even then, it would need to be stirred up occasionally to prevent dangerous gas pockets from forming.
And, if you use sand, I would strongly suggest using nothing but white silica PFS -heavier - very clean & easy to keep clean - won't trouble you getting into filters, and a good growing medium when using root tab ferts, not to mention it looks great.


My .02 cents.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Lemme show you kinda what I want.



Notice how high the slopes are? Grant it, it might be 8", not 11" but still. Its deep. (its a 55g tank)

I think I am going to make a fake bottom. Thanks guys!
 

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i thought of another good way that might work out for u homedepot sells pvc sometimes cut in lengths grab a 6in 4in 2in and drill a couple holes to it to hold water cap the ends after u fill it will just enough weight to be nuetrally boyant place in tank and cover with substrate, if its really steep and or fine enough substrate use some screen from a screen door or a fabric shop place them virtically at every tier an fold back to the taller teir an lightly cover the back then plant through it so it holds until everything has filled in like hte tank above. will something like that work for u ?
 

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Have you thought about using expanding foam to make most of the slope, and then just covering that in the substrate? Great stuff foam would work well.
I've seem this mentioned a few times now. How does one work with this stuff?
I'd think you could cut it with an electric carving knife like filter foam? What do you build your mold on that it won't permanately stick to?
 

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I've seem this mentioned a few times now. How does one work with this stuff?
I'd think you could cut it with an electric carving knife like filter foam? What do you build your mold on that it won't permanately stick to?
Ir's simple, just spray it on and the just cut it to shape. I imagine you could you an electric carving knife and then over it with more detail using some sand paper. A razor blade works well as well. I would just foam it straight to the glass. If needed it cam be removed at a later time using a razor blade.
 

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Ir's simple, just spray it on and the just cut it to shape. I imagine you could you an electric carving knife and then over it with more detail using some sand paper. A razor blade works well as well. I would just foam it straight to the glass. If needed it cam be removed at a later time using a razor blade.
Is this the same stuff you get at home depot that you spray to fill in gaps and cracks? That stuff is super flamamable. Is it safe for aquarium use?
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Ooh, expanding foam sounds great! Thanks guys!
 

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Is this the same stuff you get at home depot that you spray to fill in gaps and cracks? That stuff is super flamamable. Is it safe for aquarium use?
Yes it is the same stuff. The stuff I've used is called "greatstuff" comes in a can. It isn't flammable in solid form, so once it dries you are good to o, I would give it 24 hours. Yes it is aquarium safe, it is the smae stuff most people use for DIY foam backgrounds. People also use it in terrariums.
 

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Ooh, expanding foam sounds great! Thanks guys!
Just remember to wear latex gloves and buy a puddy knife so you can shape and form it the way you want. Also it's very sticky so I would practice on something other than your tank the first time.
 

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I might also add that I would spray it out in a general form of what you are going for and let it dry. Dont move it around while it is wet still. Give it an hour and then you can cut it sand it whatever you like. Tou can also but it in black at pond stores and some lowes stores. Usaully about 10-15$ dollars though.
GoodLuck
 
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