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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Okay setting up a 40b (sound familiar..lol). Have some ideas on sub.. Been researching threads a lot, but still not sure.Would love to go all ADA aquasoil but it's out of my budget for now. Also, don't really want to go dirted as I rearrange things to "update" the look of my tank on a whim sometimes..lol

Some ideas..

1) 50\50 Eco complete/ Aquasoil?

2) Clay (SafeTSorb\Turface\?) capped with bdbs? Don't really like the color of SafeTsorb.. Want black.

3) Regular gravel capped with eco?

4) ?

Any ideas or experiences welcome. Also, for hills/slopes could I use small volcanic rocks under the sub? Basically to take up space under a large hill/slope? Or would the top layer fall in between the lava rocks?

I have eco in my 20g high tech and 2 10g low techs. I love it, but it's a smaller footprint so going eco was cheap. Thanks.
 

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If you like to change things up, I wouldn't mix anything. Go with either Eco or Aquasoil.

Look at it this way, how often do you change substrate? Not very much so the price difference is really not that great over time. I've used Eco and AS, although I would admit to more explosive growth with AS, Eco grew plants very well and either method requires water column ferts over the long haul. Eco gets a bad rap here sometimes because it's not as advertised, but I grew pretty much everything in it without adding anything to the substrate. Eco is also much 'cleaner' to work with then AS. AS can really mess up your tank if your not careful.
 

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I used dirt capped with blasting sand. There's a little bit of organic matter from the dirt that has made its way above the sand, but it doesn't look bad at all. I'm going to be replanting everything this week so that may change lol
 

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If you like to change things up, I wouldn't mix anything. Go with either Eco or Aquasoil.

Look at it this way, how often do you change substrate? Not very much so the price difference is really not that great over time. I've used Eco and AS, although I would admit to more explosive growth with AS, Eco grew plants very well and either method requires water column ferts over the long haul. Eco gets a bad rap here sometimes because it's not as advertised, but I grew pretty much everything in it without adding anything to the substrate. Eco is also much 'cleaner' to work with then AS. AS can really mess up your tank if your not careful.
I would like to go all eco as i have it in 3 smaller tanks, but I'd need about 5-6 bags for the 40g and at $20 dollars a bag that's over $100 just in sub. AS would be even worse..

Thanks. Didn't know whether mixing eco and AS was a good idea..

Bump:
I used dirt capped with blasting sand. There's a little bit of organic matter from the dirt that has made its way above the sand, but it doesn't look bad at all. I'm going to be replanting everything this week so that may change lol
Yeah, sounds like it could get messy..:laugh2: Thanks.

Bump: What would be great is to have some sub as just a "filler" and throw some AS or eco on top. That you could get away with 2-3 bags...

How dirty is the Safe T Sorb or BDBS? Saw some videos about the Safe T Sorb. Looks like a LOT of rinsing even after sifting it.. Still looking for options/opinions as well...
 

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How dirty is the Safe T Sorb or BDBS? Saw some videos about the Safe T Sorb. Looks like a LOT of rinsing even after sifting it.. Still looking for options/opinions as well...
I can't speak for the STS, but I have BDBS in 3 tanks and I love it. I don't believe it has a great CEC value but it looks good, easy to plant in and it's cheap.
 

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Also, for hills/slopes could I use small volcanic rocks under the sub? Basically to take up space under a large hill/slope? Or would the top layer fall in between the lava rocks?
Some of the top layer will fall between the lava rocks. You could use a thicker cap to fix that.

you can use corroplast/corrugated plastic sheets from homedepot/whatever home improvement store thats around for extra support on the hills
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I can't speak for the STS, but I have BDBS in 3 tanks and I love it. I don't believe it has a great CEC value but it looks good, easy to plant in and it's cheap.
How much rinsing did it need? Thanks.

Bump:
Some of the top layer will fall between the lava rocks. You could use a thicker cap to fix that.

you can use corroplast/corrugated plastic sheets from homedepot/whatever home improvement store thats around for extra support on the hills
Good ideas. Thanks.
 
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