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RedPhotog

Vacuuming LS Beds?

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@RedPhotog

I do not care to get bogged down in the details of what happens within the sand bed until you know more.  Read up on it.  Dr Ron will take you there.  I have meant Dr Ron.  He is fixated on his way being the only best way.  I have meant him twice.  I disagree with his contention that the sand bed depth needs to be more than 2”.

 

http://www.ronshimek.com/deep_sand_beds.html

 

 

 

I will give you a method that is “tried & true”.   PaulB and I both started marine aquariums in 1971 after returning from Cambodia fighting Kamair Rouge.  Paul set his tank up on Long Island outside of NYC.  He collected mud/substrate from Long Island Sound as well as live pods.  I used crushed up oysters shells from a chicken feed store in Galveston, Tx.  Paul maintained the same 100G tank set up until this past Christmas.  He moved 40 miles to the eastern most tip of US at Montoigue Point.  My first tank made it ten years before somebody told me the the rich colored maroon mat of cynobacteria was bad.  I thought it was pretty.  So, in addittion to being an expert on sandbeds, I am also an expert on cyanobacteria. 😴

 

Because I know success when I see it, with PaulB’s 45 year old tank, I use a 2” sandbed of Special Reef Grade (.1 -  1.0mm)on top of a false bottom with .5” void.  Connect a small pump to circulate water up thru the sandbed, this prevents detritus from settling down into sandbed.  

 

 

 

 

 

 

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6 hours ago, Subsea said:

@RedPhotog

To focus on your use of .5mm grain size in a 2” layer of sandbed, more than likely, with good detrivores/good maintenance there will be no anaerobic chemistry.  

 

Why would you risk getting hydrogen sulfide by pushing the limit of your sand-bed depth?

 

What is the point of 2” plus that is so important to you?

I guess my confusion lyes in thinking 2 inches of sand is deep, but it’s not no? DSB is usually a term for 4-8 inches when a different biological chemistry occurs? 

 

There is no point of going deeper for me. I’m just looking for a natural poop and pee dissolving cycle. But I am not going further than 2 inches. I think my ignorance and lack of connection with be hobby and science is creating some confusion. For me at least. I really appreciate the last thread post you sent me, it’s very educational. Thank you. 

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6 hours ago, Subsea said:

Because I know success when I see it, with PaulB’s 45 year old tank, I use a 2” sandbed of Special Reef Grade (.1 -  1.0mm)on top of a false bottom with .5” void.  Connect a small pump to circulate water up thru the sandbed, this prevents detritus from settling down into sandbed.  

 

I think this is a pretty cool method. I think a lot of people with nano tanks vacuum their sandbeds simply because we can (its easy in a nano) and we don't employ a method like this in our small tanks to keep debris from settling so we just do it manually. 

 

I am not familiar with large tanks but I do see people post about problems with what people call "old tank syndrome" which seems to be from old sand beds that were not kept clean or DSB's that are intentionally not disturbed. 

 

Do you think a shallow sand bed with sand sifting gobies works? Not in nano's as they are not appropriate but large tanks. Where the gobies are basically stirring the sand and the flow in the tank picks up the debris and carries it to floss/filter sock to be cleaned and removed.

 

 

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@Tamberav

 

Thank you for that.  Reverse flow undergravel filter is not required for maintaining large tanks, but it does add a continuous source of oxygen.  This means more ability to process nutrients.  I have several ten year old 55G growout tanks with < 2” of substrate on bottom.    Bristle worms & Cerith Snails maintain these sandbeds.

 

Old Tank Syndrome does not involve a sandbed getting ready to crash.  Ken Feldman addressed “old tank syndrome” in the conclusion of his Advanced Aquaria article on carbon dosing in reef aquarium.  His research showed that reefs that were heavily skimmed had 10% of the TOC (total organic carbon) on a wild reef.  He hypothesized that due to skimming free swimming bacteria populations were stifled thus stressing corals from having this source of food.

 

 

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16 minutes ago, Subsea said:

@Tamberav

 

Thank you for that.  Reverse flow undergravel filter is not required for maintaining large tanks, but it does add a continuous source of oxygen.  This means more ability to process nutrients.  I have several ten year old 55G growout tanks with < 2” of substrate on bottom.    Bristle worms & Cerith Snails maintain these sandbeds.

 

Old Tank Syndrome does not involve a sandbed getting ready to crash.  Ken Feldman addressed “old tank syndrome” in the conclusion of his Advanced Aquaria article on carbon dosing in reef aquarium.  His research showed that reefs that were heavily skimmed had 10% of the TOC (total organic carbon) on a wild reef.  He hypothesized that due to skimming free swimming bacteria populations were stifled thus stressing corals from having this source of food.

 

 

 

When I see people say "old tank syndrome" they usually have cyano, GHA or some other issue. Is it that the bacteria population gets out of wack and nuisance algae/pests move in to take over?

 

This article mentions taking a canister filter to get debris out of rocks and stirring the sand bed so new bacteria have places to colonize?? I have a canister filter not being used, never thought about cleaning my rock this way. Right now I just blast the debris out with a turkey baster. 

 

http://www.saltwatersmarts.com/understanding-old-tank-syndrome-6440/

 

 

 

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It is complex, but the answer to your first paragraph is yes.

 

The article which you linked was in fact written by Paul.  His main thrust was that bacteria are necessary to promote healthy immune systems in fish.  The idea of cleaning off rock and sandbed surface is relavent because it allows oxygen to fuel the growth of healthy bacteria on the interior of the rock and in the depths of the sandbed.

 

So bacteria imbalances skew redox values and shift dominant species from coral to algae.  Bacteria also effect fish immune systems.  Just google “gut system bacteria & immune system”.

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