Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: Apple Valley, MN
Well you are already a huge step ahead of most people that get all excited and just fill their tank with water without putting a lot of thought and time into getting their hardscape down first. Make sure you are happy with what you got before you put in water, because once you do that, your options become very limited.
Spend a lot of time playing with how you want the wood to look. Also, it has a tendency to move around once you put water in, so you may want to think about securing it. Look at the first page of my Fallen Tree Brach journal in my signature to see what I did. Don't be afraid to drill holes where you won't see them, and use zip ties. There are a lot of ways to do it.
When you start scaping, smooth out all of the bumps in your substrate. They'll smooth out over time anyway, and it'll look cleaner. Also, try to keep a really smooth substrate line across the front of the glass.