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Welcome abord Dirt_Dude.
Always nice to see someone not afraid to go down the dirty road. :)

Here is what I brainstormed with myself when I setup a 20 long not even 2 months ago.
One layer of clay dug out up to 2 feet down my backyard.
One layer of pond soil, a commercial product specific to ponds.
One layer of play sand. I use this in all my tanks.

Each layer is not more than 1". I targeted 3/4 but it varies...

When I redo my 76 gal, I will go dirt again. And more than one inch of dirt. At least 2". It will go anaerobic. But from my understanding, it's not a problem if you don't disturb the soil. And I don't.

I use MTS and pond snails. I like them, so I am with @WickedOdie on this. MTS don't mis the layers, Noting compared to what tubifex can do and did to my 29 gal.
 
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