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Old 09-13-2010, 09:23 PM   #1
Hilde
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Low tech 29 gallon


I recently broke down my 29 gallon and restarted. The plants are recuperating from their stay in 10 gallon tank. The mountain I created to put moss and ferns closer to the light. Also put pcv tubes in it to create hiding places for Apistogrammas in holding tank. Doesn't blend in well. What can I do to make it blend in more, besides adding rocks?

Backdrop
green material
Lights
3 T8's (ZooMed ultrasun, Aqua-glo , and Life-glo)
Ferts
Brightwell Multi
Seachem Nitrogen until hair algae gone
Brightwell Fe
Excel

Substrate
Laterite, reptile coconut bark, old substrate, pool filter sand

Plants
Dwarf Lilly bulbs 2
Eleocharis acicularis
Hygrophila difformis
Hygrophila polysperma gold
Heteranthera zosterifolia
Vesicularia dubyana
Myriophyllum simulans
Microsorum pteropus v windelov and needle
Rotala rotundifolia
Sagittaria subulata

Filter
Eheim Ecco 2032

Last edited by Hilde; 11-16-2010 at 09:48 PM..
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Old 09-14-2010, 03:48 PM   #2
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I think one thing that makes the mountain stand out is that it is kinda block-ish if you want it to look more natural try something without the straight edges and corners.

I like the various levels of it though. I don't see the pvc so that must be blended pretty well.
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Old 09-14-2010, 04:00 PM   #3
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You could grow some Fissidens on the "rocks." Though over time they're going to get some algae growing on them and that will help them look more "natural" too.
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Old 09-14-2010, 09:00 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kamikazi View Post
I think one thing that makes the mountain stand out is that it is kinda block-ish if you want it to look more natural try something without the straight edges and corners.
Yeh, I agree. I thinking of putting some baked sculpty clay on the sides, during a water change, to simulate this.

Last edited by Hilde; 10-13-2010 at 03:40 AM..
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Old 09-14-2010, 09:02 PM   #5
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You could grow some Fissidens on the "rocks."
I shall try to get some on Ebay when it gets cooler. Not to long till then! The Fissidens look easier to deal with than the xmas moss, which I have on the top.

I just read that it grows in a ball. lauraleellbp have you ever grown it?
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Old 09-14-2010, 11:09 PM   #6
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Thats a cool idea. I'm trying to build a mountain/castle for my future apistos. I'm carving it out styrofoam like people do with back grounds. if your interested in trying that then the cichlid-forum.com is an excellent source.
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Old 09-15-2010, 01:49 AM   #7
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I'm carving it out styrofoam like people do with back grounds.
I saw one do that for a betta tank. She covered it with plaster. It took months for it to cure and the parameters to settle. Is this what you are talking about? Send me a link to it, please.

Well here I found someone whom used Drylock instead of plaster paris and curing time was short.

Future plan is to do what Fishbreath did with rock, eggcrate (drop ceiling flourescent light diffuser) and expanding foam on the left side. I used some flimsy chicken wire. Seems you never stop planning on what to do with the scape.

Last edited by Hilde; 10-14-2010 at 04:21 PM..
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Old 09-15-2010, 02:23 AM   #8
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Here's a great "ball" of Fissidens fontanus, growing on a rock in Joe Faria's tank: http://forums.tfhmagazine.com/viewto...p?f=82&t=26519

I recommend you get some from another hobbyist rather than from Ebay, though- you'll get a whole lot more moss, and a lot less risk of it arriving all crispy.
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Old 09-15-2010, 03:27 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lauraleellbp View Post
Here's a great "ball" of Fissidens fontanus, growing on a rock in Joe Faria's tank: http://forums.tfhmagazine.com/viewto...p?f=82&t=26519
Wow!! That is really cool!
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I recommend you get some from another hobbyist rather than from Ebay, though- you'll get a whole lot more moss, and a lot less risk of it arriving all crispy.
Yeh, I know I have had that happen before. It is only $3 though so I jumped in and bidded it for it. I have green slimmy hair grass in the planted tank now, thus should have waited until got that under control. I wish I would stop being impulsive.
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Old 09-15-2010, 02:10 PM   #10
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I'm using the drylok method. Just have to wait for things to dry. I'll probably rinse it before I put in the tank. Once in the tank I'm going to keep an eye on the pH but the beauty of the drylok method is that it shouldn't change the pH much if at all.

Here is a showcase of DIY backgrounds on the cichlid-forum. Malawi_Junkie and mightyevil are two users that use the drylok method.
http://www.cichlid-forum.com/phpBB/v...c.php?t=206914
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Old 09-15-2010, 10:46 PM   #11
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I'm using the drylok method.
What is the cost?
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Old 09-16-2010, 01:38 AM   #12
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I dont recall the cost of a can of drylok its not much. Need to get the latex kind (check out my thread in aquascaping about cedar) there are some pictures in that thread of the stuff im using. The pigments are like 6-8 dollars each. A4x8 sheet of styrofoam was a little over 10. I like the creativity it allows so I think its worth it.
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Old 09-16-2010, 02:50 AM   #13
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kamikazi I found your tread. Someone was talking about sculpy clay. I am wondering if I can use it to modify present set up.
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Old 09-16-2010, 02:16 PM   #14
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maybe, you might also be able to modify the current with "great stuff" expanding foam. lots of threads at cichlid forum about using that as well. again sealing it after it drys and you have carved it.

I've not seen people using the sculpty clay, so I'm not sure if you would have to seal it.

One thing to consider is anything foam will be very buoyant so you will need to weigh it down or attach it to the glass with silicone. Personally I hate the idea of attaching things to the tank...so for my things I'm planning on using rock or something to weigh it down
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Old 09-16-2010, 07:47 PM   #15
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maybe, you might also be able to modify the current with "great stuff" expanding foam.
I can't take it out of the tank. It is just a box made with some light fence wire. I put rocks in it, hoping it will work as biological filter. Then put rocks outside on the front side and then sprayed great stuff on it. First bottle dried before I finished.
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