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Re: New Tank Setup

On Thu, 20 Jul 2000, Bill Gould wrote:

> A note about the "grit" yes, it's very sharp, and as I've heard, the
> "Grit" is actually just silica or ('coke' anyone?) added to the refining
> process! of iron/steel whatever, and while it's all molten, it's cooled,
> and the silica with it's network solid structure (glass?) nabs up all
> the impurities floating at the surface.

It sounds to me like the grit is just ground slag.  On general priciples
I couldn't advise anyone to use it.  I hope it works for you.

> Peat, as most know, and I wasn't quite aware of exactly how strong the
> tannic acids were... are very strong in peat... apparently soaking peat
> doesn't seem to work, mine only started releasing the dark acids into
> the water after the Ammonia-Nitrite-Nitrate cycle began. So now... help!
> The tank is brown, the RO/DI filter water changes can't seem to keep up
> with the tannic acids, and it smells (maybe just the result of the N
> cycle?).

The color usually fades in time.  In my last tank setup with peat it was
unnoticable in about 6 weeks.  You probably used more peat than I did, so
it might last longer.  Getting a good root system established in the
substrate might help.  The plants should pull enough water down into the
substrate to offset the tendency for the color to leak out of the

You might also be able to remove some of the color by filtering through
activated carbon.  This will also remove trace elements, so if you try it,
put the carbon into a filter after a water change, leave it no longer than
it's needed and remove it before you add any trace fertilizers.

I don't know why you can smell it.  That doesn't sound to me like a good

Roger Miller