Warning Re K&e Blasting Sand (a Black Sand Available In Canada)

bitseriously

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This is K&E brand blasting sand, available in Canada (at least here in southern Ontario) from The Country Store. I believe it’s a coal slag product, which I presumed is similar to the US “Black Diamond” blasting sand (feedback welcome on this).
E4396894-66DD-44B3-AC58-ECD3E85D2129.jpeg
A8DB8727-7E69-40B9-B6EF-B9C90D562301.jpeg
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The last pic, just above is taken with iPhone trough a mag loupe, the measurements are millimeters.
I’m ashamed to say, I’ve had cories on this for almost 6 months. Had no idea what I was doing to them. Lost multiple schools.
Needless to say, it’s now removed from my tanks, and replaced with a new pool filter sand from Canadian Tire. Which is a silica sand and looks like this. I think it’s an improvement over the more common nepheline syenite (also used as pfs).
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I think my fish will be much happier.
 

Platylover

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Yikes... glad you realised how sharp it was and switched.
 

Kevin Dennis

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Coal slag is nasty stuff. I know a lot of people have had success with it but I would rather not put industrial waste in my tank.
 

Thunder_o_b

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I would be curious as to the difference between this and BDBS. I and many others on this forum have used it for years and had no ill results with sensitive bottom dwellers.
 

Klink

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I have the same Aqua Quartz sand in my 120 and my cories love it. It's a very clean, soft sand.
 

bitseriously

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I would be curious as to the difference between this and BDBS. I and many others on this forum have used it for years and had no ill results with sensitive bottom dwellers.
I’m really glad you chimed in @Thunder_o_b I was writing very specifically to not bash the BDBS, which I know you have had excellent success with.
And I can’t imagine that a product as popular as the BDBS would look like this under a scope or lens. But like you, would be curious to know.

Coal slag is nasty stuff. I know a lot of people have had success with it but I would rather not put industrial waste in my tank.
Personally, I don’t have a problem with it being coal slag - and I’m not even sure that’s what it is - it’s the sharp angular nature that gets me. It really looks like crushed glass.
 

scarface

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To be honest, it doesn't appear that sharp to me.
 

Thunder_o_b

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I’m really glad you chimed in @Thunder_o_b I was writing very specifically to not bash the BDBS, which I know you have had excellent success with.
And I can’t imagine that a product as popular as the BDBS would look like this under a scope or lens. But like you, would be curious to know.


Personally, I don’t have a problem with it being coal slag - and I’m not even sure that’s what it is - it’s the sharp angular nature that gets me. It really looks like crushed glass.
You have stirred my curiosity. I do have the camera gear to get down to that level. I am up to my nose in things I must do this weekend, but I will try to get some high magnification shots of BDBS soon.
 

Kevin Dennis

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I’m really glad you chimed in @Thunder_o_b I was writing very specifically to not bash the BDBS, which I know you have had excellent success with.
And I can’t imagine that a product as popular as the BDBS would look like this under a scope or lens. But like you, would be curious to know.


Personally, I don’t have a problem with it being coal slag - and I’m not even sure that’s what it is - it’s the sharp angular nature that gets me. It really looks like crushed glass.
It is what is left over after coal is burned in power plants. It is used in industry sand blasting because of the sharp angular pieces.
 

Thunder_o_b

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It is what is left over after coal is burned in power plants. It is used in industry sand blasting because of the sharp angular pieces.
This is where it gets interesting. I for a very long time spoke against its use. It was counter intuitive to me that an industrial waste that could blast metal clean could be used in aquariums. It was the members of Fishlore that I trusted who convinced me to try it. I will not say I understand it but I have five long standing aquariums with it.
 

Kevin Dennis

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I considered blasting sand as well to avoid the high price of "aquarium sand"

I ended up using pool filter sand and I after watching my kuhli loaches blow sand out of their gills I couldn't imagine using a substrate that sharp.

But, as you said many here have had success with it. A personal choice I guess.
 

Splaker

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It is what is left over after coal is burned in power plants. It is used in industry sand blasting because of the sharp angular pieces.
I am restarting this thread as I am in the process of deciding what substrate to use... I cam across this article and it states that it's not particularly sharp and that the blasting effectiveness is a function of the hardness of the grains rather than the sharpness... FWIW: The Honest Truth About Black Diamond Blasting Sand Safety in Aquarium | Aquanswers
 

Truckjohn

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Thanks for the pics! It definitely illustrates a very good point.

I have probably run into similar by throwing some crushed coral into my tank for pH help.... It's sharp stuff.... I really need to agitate it down into the substrate.

Sharp sand is absolutely what you want for sand blasting applications because it works so much faster. It's sharp edges "cut" quickly and so the sand blasting jobs go *way* faster. Cement guys like this stuff for their mixes because it bonds to the cement much better than the soft sand...

I agree that the more conventional river sand is what I would want for an aquarium. That's been weathered and as you saw has the sharp edges (mostly) knocked off...
 

Splaker

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And is the blasted sand only an issue if you have bottom dwelling fish? If you don't it should work, no?
 

Blondeath

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my BDBS from TSC looks similar to that. they aren't sharp though, they are just angular - not perfectly round.
 

qquake2k

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There are photos of Black Diamond in the sticky post here:

 




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