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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I just bought a 90 gallon acyrlic tank that I have not begun to setup yet and I want to do it right. I am actually drafting up plans for the stand and type of sump/ refugium I want. I am very seriously considering a bare bottom tank with a sump/refugium with a sand/aragonite bed in the sump/refugium. I hear conflicting opinions from both sides and I want to know what people think and why?

The last tank I had, had algae blooms and cyano periodically. I had aragonite in this tank. I don't want to go down this road again! I want a clean looking tank.

So, should I go bare bottom or have some type of substrate?

My objective is to have a fairly "simple" tank. I've been on a 6 month break from having a saltwater tank and I have decided to return...
 

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Personally, I have a BB display tank and a DRSB in the refugium. The reasons are:

I wanted the clean look in the display tank and a lot of water movement.

I did not want to have any power head battles with sand.

If for some reason something went wrong with the sand in the display tank.

What a mess that would be taking it out or starting over again.

I keep 4" in my refugium for all those reasons mentioned above. It's easy to gain access and replenish without disrupting the display tank.

Have a good night.
 

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i like the idea of using white starboard to cover the bottom of a BB tank. It gives the reflective surface of sand without the sand. This is important for the undersides of your coral that dont get direct light. Only problem with that is corline will cover it pretty quick. Perhaps a LS unrchin? eats mine like crazy.
 

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The choice is mostly on how you want your tank to look. I have a 2-3" sand bed, since it is shallow it will not cause issues down the road. Both types will work. I enjoy the look of sand and I think it looks more natural, but our glass cages can only look so "real". I like being able to keep critters/fish that have to have sand. I have a DSB in my fuge which works to denitrify the tank. My tank is mostly SPS corals and I do not have issues with a "sand storm", the tank turn over is 70+ per hour, so I have a lot of water movement. I also have an open topped tank, so that limited the fish that I have, I only mentioned that because, like BB or SSB, it was my choice, so every one makes choices and the tank runs accordingly. I have seen many beautiful BB tanks, if you go BB, you will want to place star board on the bottom, US Plastics is a good place for it. Look at some SSB and BB's then make your choice, the only thing I would not do is put a DSB in the display tank. Best of luck.

Dan
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Do you have any pictures of your tank as a bare bottom?

Also, I've been to US Plastics website but I cannot find any pics of what star board looks like.

I want to put something down so the bottom won't have a glare, but my acrylic tank only has two openings on top. I can't fit any large sheets of plastic in there. Any suggestions?

Also, if you did put something down in the bottom, wouldn't debris get trapped under over time?

Could I paint the stand, that the tank sits on, a matte color (dull white) to cut down the glare and reflective tendencies of a bare bottom tank? What about putting some type of fabric/cotton/cloth sheet under the tank to reduce the glare?
 

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I went with a speckled corian material for my bb. Here is a picture in July 05:



It has worked out well. No one ever says anything about not having sand when they see the tank. Here is what it looks like now:



The price is comparable to starboard and the colors are practically limitless.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
If I put something like contact paper or cloth, or paint the stand where the tank sits, will the material (contact paper, cloth, or paint) be visible from outside the tank or will it still show a glare?

I really like the idea of speckled corian material, but I only have two open that measure roughly 16"X11" with a diagnal measurement of 19". Is the corian material flexible?
 

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Baboon48 said:
.... Also, I've been to US Plastics website but I cannot find any pics of what star board looks like....
Here's a link: http://www.usplastic.com/catalog/category.asp?catalog_name=USPlastic&category_name=20364&Page=1

Go to USplastic.com, then click on the "Food Industry" link in the menu on the left. The cutting board options will come up next.

I'd like to learn more about that Corian material. Can you cut it? How hard is it to trim? And I assuming that it sill gets covered with coraline....
 

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No corian isn't flexible. I don't think the starboard is going to be very flexible either. I ended up doing two pieces to fit it in my tank.

It can be cut with a saw. I just had the place I bought it from cut it to size for me. Yes, coraline grows on it as well. Mine just blends in with the live rock, especially with it being dark and speckled initially...doesn't look a lot different with coraline on it.
 

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Where do you get the corian.... just to Home Depot? Also, is it very heavy? I've never worked with it before.
 

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now i've done a little research about BB tanks and i think thats what i'm going to go with but i think u would need more live rock with a BB tank am i right? i have a 65g 48'X18" footprint so my question is how much LR do u think i would need for my tank? thanks
wally
 

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Good call on the Corian Jims i like that idea
 

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I have one joint that runs length wise in my tank. I don't think there's enough detritus getting trapped to be an issue. Lets face it, once the crack is full, the rest is going to blow over to the corner. I don't think detritus gets under the corian.

With that said, if it's something you are worried about, you can use a little silicone and seal the joints to keep anything from getting in there.
 

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bottom

me myself I dont like the look of BB so that is why I went with sand/Aragonite and also JUST INCASE something falls it gives it alittle cusion for the tank there would be nothing worse then have a rock fall hit the bottom and next thing you know I have 150gal. on the floor.....
NOT to mention I dont think the neighbor under me would like it either
 
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