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Discussion Starter #1
what types of black sand is out there for freshwater tropical tanks? I've heard tahitian moon sand and blasting sand talked about - any others? What are the ups and downs?
 

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I do know the company Sea-Chem makes a black sand that i have used in 2 of my tanks but i cant remember the correct name of it.............its not really a sand, but more like a very finely crushed stone.........I dont know how cories would be with it, it might be a little too sharp for their barbs..........I am currently using it in a 37 gallon hexagon tank with rasboras and danios and a 10 gallon shrimp colony tank with no problems.............The blue pearl shrimp contrasting against the black substrate makes their colors more pronounced...........
 

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I've got Black Tahitian Moon Sand in 2 of my 3 tanks and I love it. No down side to it that I've experienced. I also added an additional layer of Seachem Black Flourite in the very back of my larger display tank to assist in plant growth. I believe this is the product Fishin Pole is referring to. Flourite is a fracted, stable porous clay gravel. The Flourite does have some sharp edges to it so it's not something I'd use for the entire tank as far as substrate since I keep alot of bottom dwellers in this tank. Eco-Complete comes in a darker version which is something I may try in a smaller tank once I get around to setting it up.

Are you going with a planted tank? Keeping any cories or any other "sensitive to substrate" fish?
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks guys. I had briefly looked into the fluorite but quickly came to the same conclusion we have here - it is not for sensitive bottom dwellers.

Sorry, i meant to put this in my first post - but yes, i will have 6 albino cories, blind cave tetras (which to my knowledge will surf the substrate for food as well), and maybe a few khuli loaches. I haven't decided what tank the loaches are going in, but i will definitely have cories.

Sounds like we all agree fluorite is not the best for cories so i would prefer going with something else. From what i remember Tahitian moon sand is all inert right? If there are benefits to it i will go that route. If i can confirm that blasting sand is 100% safe and find out the TMS doesn't have any beneficial additives i will probably go with it since they are more or less the same thing.

Thanks both for the input, it is greatly appreciated.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Caribsea says TMS is not soft belly safe. Anyone have info experience either way?

Guess we still have nobody with experience on blasting sand?
 

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I got the marine sand over the TMS because of the fish I keep, catfish barbells wont last, neither will soft bellies, the black is sharper sand then Marine sand is but now you can go to that first site and see about their black sand. I dont think thats TMS.
 

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I keep lots of loaches & a catfish and have BTMS. Upon opening my first bag and running my hands through it I deemed it belly safe. I have pretty sensitive hands but I'm sure they are not as sensitive as loach bellys and cat barbels.
At water change time I stir the sand up with my hands by digging in it with my fingernails. Alot of sand ends up under my fingernails and I don't feel it. The sand under my nails easily comes out when I run my hands under the faucet. If it was sharp I'd think it would "stick" there.
Maybe if I had done TONS of research prior I would have gone with a different black sand but I highly doubt it. I'm approaching one year on my display tank (June) and knock wood, everyone in my tank is healthy & robust.
There's a thread somewhere here from a few days ago where BTMS is discussed in detail. I need to go find it...based on reading that thread I knew my choice of BTMS was perfectly fine.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I keep lots of loaches & a catfish and have BTMS. Upon opening my first bag and running my hands through it I deemed it belly safe. I have pretty sensitive hands but I'm sure they are not as sensitive as loach bellys and cat barbels.
At water change time I stir the sand up with my hands by digging in it with my fingernails. Alot of sand ends up under my fingernails and I don't feel it. The sand under my nails easily comes out when I run my hands under the faucet. If it was sharp I'd think it would "stick" there.
Maybe if I had done TONS of research prior I would have gone with a different black sand but I highly doubt it. I'm approaching one year on my display tank (June) and knock wood, everyone in my tank is healthy & robust.
There's a thread somewhere here from a few days ago where BTMS is discussed in detail. I need to go find it...based on reading that thread I knew my choice of BTMS was perfectly fine.

Experience is really what i am after, and you have that. Anybody can claim something is safe or not safe. I want to know what real people have really experienced. I feel better having concrete evidence on why something works or doesnt work.
 

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I keep lots of loaches & a catfish and have BTMS. Upon opening my first bag and running my hands through it I deemed it belly safe. I have pretty sensitive hands but I'm sure they are not as sensitive as loach bellys and cat barbels.
At water change time I stir the sand up with my hands by digging in it with my fingernails. Alot of sand ends up under my fingernails and I don't feel it. The sand under my nails easily comes out when I run my hands under the faucet. If it was sharp I'd think it would "stick" there.
Maybe if I had done TONS of research prior I would have gone with a different black sand but I highly doubt it. I'm approaching one year on my display tank (June) and knock wood, everyone in my tank is healthy & robust.
There's a thread somewhere here from a few days ago where BTMS is discussed in detail. I need to go find it...based on reading that thread I knew my choice of BTMS was perfectly fine.
You are right, those loaches and cories are more sensitive than you. it wont cut your hand like it will their flesh bellies, imagine a bunch of tiny papercuts. Thats if its as coarse as they claim, get a magnifying glass and check it out if you dont have access to a microscope.

No attitude given in the typing of this reply. Dont take it that way.

What the TMS is saying from caribsea is that its not ok for burrowers or bottom dwellers, I think this is because of what black sand is derived from, Iron. Iron is sharp when its super small like that, we cant feel it because of our textured fingers but try a little on your wrist or tight piece of smooth skin on your body, maybe between toes? you will notice a difference in the feel of it.

Anyone who has ever been to the beach can verify.
 

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No attitude on my part at all, but not sure what is meant by being at the beach and how that relates?? I'm at the beach nearly everyday and don't understand what you mean?? As Ricky says to Lucy, "Splain" :)
 

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the texture of the sand between your toes as opposed to the way it feels when you run it thru your fingers, I grew up in imperial beach and thats the best way to relate sand feel for me. Different parts of flesh will produce different feelings and such.

Is that an amazon?
 

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Ah, it seems we grew up on the same coast :)

PS. Yes, that's my double yellow headed amazon. I love her but she can be a royal pain in the you-know-what. I love that fish don't squawk when you're late for breakfast or scream when they think they aren't getting enough attention. I love my bird but enjoy my fish much more ;-)
 
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