The Walstad book suggests pool sand. A 50 lb bag of pool sand is $7.99. A bargain versus AQ sand. No way I can lift 50 lbs and way more than I need. The guy I spoke with was really nice and was telling there are different grades of sand. He thought I might want filter sand. I think he said that is more course. He thought $7.99 was expensive for sand and thought I should go get play sand which is only $2.99.
Which one would you go for and what are the pros and cons of each type?
I tried a couple of play sands and did not like them one bit - one was a drab grey color, and the other was quite sharp. However, there are a lot of people that do like play sand so perhaps its a brand thing.
I prefer pool filter sand (featured in my avatar) - great color (from the 3 brands I have), great weight (too heavy to be sucked up in the filter or vacuum) and it's soft. However, some people have complained about the color of their PFS, so again, perhaps it's a brand thing.
The best sand I've ever used was the caribsea supernaturals sunset gold. Beautifully rich color, very soft and just heavy enough to not be a problem for the filter. Only downside is it's at least $1/pound (20 lb bags) - not such a big deal with small tanks, but it cost me $100 to fill a 4 foot tank.
I was trying to find the link to a place another forum member mentioned about filter sand. It was the prettiest color and used in water filtration. It was made and sold by some filtration company but I can't find it :(
I was not impressed by the fine pool filter sand or play at all. it was messy and covered up everything in my tank if it got stirred up the least little bit, I won't ever use it again.
I prefer something with a little weight to it, to prevent it from easily being kicked up in the water, especially since I like cories and plecos in my tanks.
I used it by itself - I have no need for soil in my tanks. I sold the sand with the tank it was in, so I don't have it anymore But selling that and other tanks made room and paid for the new 125, so I'm not really complaining
I've not come across any fine pool filter sands, so that just supports my theory on brand differences.
Do you specifically want something lighter colored? We have black diamond blasting sand in almost all our tanks now as the cap and I love it. It doesn't cloud the water, the fish don't kick it up and it looks great.