Deep Sand Beds

Discussion in 'Answers to the most commonly asked questions asked' started by NandKBlock, Feb 23, 2010.

  1. mattb

    mattb I contributed!
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    I had a Jaubert system (similar to DSB) and the power was out for a good 6 hours, all I had was a small powerhead hooked up to a car battery..... the tank was packed with acros - not a single loss..... But I do remember panicing the entire time :)

    Do not stir a DSB, do not have critters or CUC for a DSB. It is ideal if it isn't lit, and the there is a lot of water movement.
     
  2. Fb Joe

    Fb Joe I contributed!
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    I want to expand this part, Critters sold as sand sifters are bad for DSB's cause they eat everything in the sand as they sift. No critters= too much bacteria+ too little flow= Concrete DSB.

    Ive heard a little light can help, the cyano in the sandbed absorbs nutrients straight from the bacteria in the aerobic zone.

    Also what ken silvey said, the sock idea is very important. Detritus can ruin a DSB quick by cutting off oxygen to the first parts of the bed.

    I have a DSB in both mantis tanks, and it helps, but expect a long cycle before you hit zero nutrients. I wouldn't worry about a loss of power, most the bed doesnt need oxygen anyways, just flow.
    FWIW, Joe.
     
  3. REEFSTOCK

    REEFSTOCK Formally: Bond, James
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    From what I understand, or the fear instilled in me from BB pushers ;) is that the sand bed itself is a great consumer of O2. So when the lights are off and the movement of the pumps has ceased. The assumption is in a power failure a sand bed tank will crash faster than a non sandbed tank.

    ...........................................................

    Taking things with a grain of sand here. My tank successes came with BB tanks and theirfor I love them. There are just as many reverse stories. I'm debating setting up a DSB 180 at home just to prove all the systems work :cool:
     
  4. RaysReef

    RaysReef Reefing made easy
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    IMO, Fluidized DSB with silcant sand *came with kit* No issue with leaching or algae bloom
     
  5. OP
    NandKBlock

    NandKBlock I contributed!
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    I think all methods can work if fully and properly implemented. But that's where I think people go wrong, they take parts of each system and try combining them.

    I think somewhere this thread took a turn toward assuming DSBs are in the display tank. For many reasons I'd personally keep any DSB remote. I've got mine set up behind a baffle so if the power goes out it will remain completely separate from the rest of the system water (nothing will be pumped in thus nothing goes out over the baffle). If there was ever a long power outage I'd probably have to think long and hard about whether to bring it back online.
     
  6. mattb

    mattb I contributed!
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    A fluidized DSB? There are fluidized sand filters, but they are not for denitrification at all.... it's like that guy with a little algae filter calling it an ATS.
     
  7. mattb

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    Yes, you do not want any critters in a DSB. Sand that solidifies can be caused by two different things: 1) bacteria, and 2) CaCO3 precipitation. Too little flow doesn't really have anything to do with it.
    Cyano is a nitrogen fixer, they do not need N from the nitrogen cycle in the water.

     
  8. Nanofins

    Nanofins All Your Base-Rock Are Belong To US!
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    75g Mixed Garden 8 years running. DSB in-tank consisting of a mix of that Red Sea spherical oolitic sand, caribsea seaflor, and sugarfine sand. I might have thrown a container of that reef mud in there in the beginning too. 4" in shallow areas, 6"+ in deeper areas. 150+lbs live rock. No skimmer. Carbon minimally and only sporadically. No GFO. Water changes 25% ~1x monthly, sometimes 2x if I have time/motivation. I dose 2-part every day by hand and have to or else the Ca and KH drop to critical levels in a couple days from consumption (my tank is too packed right now).

    Nitrates <5, when I tested several months ago before a water change.

    I haven't really deliberately added any critters for the sandbed, but it's colonized by a variety of pods and worms stars and whatnot. There are always worm tunnels in the first couple inches of the sandbed. If you dig down past the first couple inches you do get that really dark coating of bacteria on the substrate from the anaerobic (I assume) bacteria. I don't generally mess with the deeper parts of the substrate. I've had power outages for several hours with no visible consequences.

    I'll probably go DSB with my 300 as well, though I plan to put a skimmer on this tank from the beginning, as this will be a more SPS dominated tank. The SPS in my 75 do fine and grow, but the colors tend to be darker and can brown out on some acros and such. Montis, some acros, and many others seem to love life though.
     

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