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MatPat 11-03-2005 08:35 PM

Soilmaster setup pics
Since there are going to be a few more of us setting up some tanks with the Soilmaster Select in the next month or so, I took a few pics while setting mine up tonight.

I added a dusting of peat to the bottom of the tank

added some Soilmaster to hold the peat down, and added mulm to the soilmaster

added more soilmaster (pic 3)

and partially filled the tank

I did not rinse the Soilmaster and filled the tank very slowly. The first ten gallons or so probably took me at least 15 minutes. I also added about 6ppm of KNO3 and 1.2ppm of KH2PO4 to the initial fill water (based on total tank volume). I'm thinking this may get absorbed by the soilmaster since it seems to initially be hydroscopic. Maybe it will absorb a bit of the fertilizers.

I was originally going to fill the tank and let the debris settle out overnight. It is clear enough that I figured I would stop and go ahead and put the plants in tomorrow. If it needs a water change after the plants go in, I will do one then. The Soilmaster Select seems to hold the plants down much better than the Schultz Aquatic Plant Soil I hae in my 55g and it is mixed with Flourite also! Might be due to the smaller grain size, but I think I will still add the sand tomorrow...

I thought I would add that I did not rinse the Soilmaster at all. That is why it looks so light in color when initally added.

ctmpwrdcamry 11-03-2005 08:59 PM

Matt, whats the second piture in the first row of? This stuff looks browner than what we saw at the metting. Any thoughts?

MatPat 11-03-2005 09:06 PM

The second pic is where I added mulm from my filters. Probably about a quart or so of nasty, dirty, stinky, fish poop water. It is darker in those areas because it is wet.

What everyone saw at the meeting was the black sand. We did not have the Soilmaster until yesterday. The soilmaster is actually charcoal colored but we have been calling it gray. It is lighter than the sand. The soilmaster is also dry in the first couple of pics so it really looks grey. The fourth pic shows what it looks like wet and the last pic has plants to give you an idea of the color balance. I painted the backof the tank black with a can of $.97 spray paint from WalMart. That should also give you a better idea as to the color of the Soilmaster. I think I need a better camera!

ctmpwrdcamry 11-03-2005 09:52 PM

Alright, just trying to understand!

Rob Tetrazona 11-04-2005 04:18 AM

Matt, that microncartridge really helped to clear the water as you suggested. However, the water flow from the filter really slows down with it in, causing much gas to build up in my CO2 reactor. I'll go back to the carbon cartridge stuffed with polyester floss like you recommended.

Since I won't be working today, I'll have plenty of time to plant a new glosso patch in the new substrate. Who knows, maybe I'll get a chance to post a pic today.

Rob Tetrazona 11-04-2005 03:54 PM

Full Frontal

Top View

Up Too Close

Good View of Layers

Surface Shot

ctmpwrdcamry 11-04-2005 03:55 PM

Wow! Thats looks great!

Rob Tetrazona 11-04-2005 03:57 PM

Thanks! I agree. Thanks for the black sand recommendation!

Simpte 27 11-04-2005 08:33 PM

I can't wait!! Tuesday is the big day for me! Matt, I will be over to go plant shopping (In your tanks of course! lol). Will probably also order a package tomorrow (Saturday) and get some oddities. Anything you're still looking for?

MatPat 11-05-2005 05:50 AM


Originally Posted by Simpte 27
I can't wait!! Tuesday is the big day for me! Matt, I will be over to go plant shopping (In your tanks of course! lol). Will probably also order a package tomorrow (Saturday) and get some oddities. Anything you're still looking for?

I'm not looking for anything in particular right now. Not sure what I will have available for your "plant shopping" trip since I too am setting up a new tank and need fast growers. I had to get mine from Rob (thanks Rob) last night. I wll be working on getting all of my Java Fern and Anubias nana in the tank today but I may have a few stems of H. difformis I can spare!

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