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Old 12-04-2004, 06:29 PM   #1
Mavvy
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New source for backgrounds


Ok, well, they're not a 'new' source...but I was shopping at Lowe's and ended up in the floor tile section. No, not wood or linoleum...but ceramic, slate, marble, and the like. Did you know they even have tile that looks like miniature 'bricks in a wall' on a net that is a foot square, that you can glue to the back and then grout??

Now, considering all this...along with the fact that it's relatively inexpensive (you can buy 'em per piece or sheet), I'm thinking of doing an 'urban cichlid' tank, with the brick-type sheets fastened to the back of a 20-gallon long (I know...too big for a 'nano'), larger paver-style brick tiles (they're about 1/2" thick) with a sand grout on the bottom, some Java fern, anubias nana, and various moss on strategic items (ever seen the decoration that looks like a piece of broken sewer pipe?), and then a couple of the smaller cichlids. Would look for all the world like a 'clean' water culvert...

Or a piece of black marble tile 12" by 8" (they'll score and break it there) on the back of one of my 2.5G tanks and a black substrate (Eco-complete, by choice), with glosso and a set of three pieces of gray slate in a non-even pattern, with two or three white clouds?

With the 'right' lighting, the possibilities seem awesome. The main thing to be wary of would be the fastening agent for the tiles/sheets and the grouting material.

Gawd...I DO love this stuff...
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Old 12-04-2004, 07:15 PM   #2
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Another DIY fanatic...live well and prosper brotha.

Love to see the final product. Slate is a great inside the tank background too.
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Old 12-04-2004, 07:18 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Badcopnofishtank
Another DIY fanatic...live well and prosper brotha.

Love to see the final product. Slate is a great inside the tank background too.
I'm working on that, too. Trying to get my hands on a tile-cutting saw or diamond wetsaw. I want to cut thin pieces of slate and stack them along the back, like a stacked stone wall. I've already done one with river rock. Looks tres cool.
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Old 12-22-2004, 02:13 AM   #4
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Okay, I actually did the 2.5G with a piece of black polished granite floor tile. Lowes cut it to 7 1/2" by 11 3/4" (both cuts free on their wetsaw), and it fitted perfectly into the back, using some aquarium silicone to hold it in place. (Left it alone for 48 hours, lying on a towel on a shelf; this gave the silicone seal time to cure, and allowed the weight of the granite itself to assist the 'clamping'.)

Substrate chosen was Tahitian Moon Sand. I rinsed...and rinsed...and rinsed some more...and ended up with a two-inch substrate of purty black sand.

I planted glosso. Ugh. What a pain. One doggoned plantlet at a time, with 10-inch tweezers I got on eBay. But it'll be worth it when it grows in.

I've got a DIY CO2 setup with an airstone bubbling straight into the intake of an AZOO Palm filter that I'd already seeded for several weeks in an established tank. Water was a gallon from the same tank, and the rest is dechlored tap water. (Unfortunately, the blue tubing from the CO2 rig is REAL visible, at this point-I'll do something different later to better disguise that part.) Lighting is a Coralife Aqualite 18W freshwater fixture, directly on top of the plexi top I cut.

In the center I have a monolithic piece of bogwood,with a java fern plantlet and some java moss (I intend to add an anubias nana petite...ummm...when I can find or am gifted with one...). Behind the bogwood is a clump of fanwort. The bright greens of the plants are a great counterpoint to the black background and sand and the dark wood.

Denizens at the moment are about a dozen h. formosas. I'm going to add some cherry shrimp later if the batch I bought don't die off (they're all in hiding in another tank).

So...without further adieu...:



Commentary is, as always, welcome. Personally, I'm happy with it...it's what I envisioned when I started out on this one. I'm thinking that after the glosso grows in well, I'll take this tank to work, bring the hex home, and redo it...got a couple ideas...
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Old 12-22-2004, 12:56 PM   #5
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that is one gnarly piece of driftwood... where did you find it? i have a feeling you spend even more time at lowe's / home depot trying to find things to use for tanks than I do, and that's saying something... great find and keep posting pics of new projects!

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Old 12-23-2004, 03:09 AM   #6
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Thanks! (I think the wood was from Florida Driftwood.)

"i have a feeling you spend even more time at lowe's / home depot trying to find things to use for tanks than I do, and that's saying something"

*LOL* My girlfriend would most probably agree with you...but she's usually right there egging me on!
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Old 12-23-2004, 04:50 AM   #7
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Mavvy - that's a great DIY background idea. The colors you've gone with for your tank look spectacular. When that Glosso grows in it will be incredible. I love the bogwood. I can't wait to see this tank mature

You might consider Norprene tubing for your CO2, if only because of the fact that it's black and wouldn't stick out much at all in your tank. I know www.DrsFosterSmith.com sells it. It's fairly expensive but worth it if you want to hide the tubing.
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Old 12-23-2004, 11:25 AM   #8
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The Norprene is a good thought...thanks! One of the reasons I like the 2.5Gs is the simplicity of materials-not a lot of trimming, bulky stuff, etc., but the tanks look huge when they're complete. I really don't care for fake, sheet-printed backgrounds, and painting's a mess. And there's a plethora (I like that word) of materials available for backgrounds. *LOL* Cheap thrills for Mavvy-but my co-workers keep asking 'When are you bringing the NEXT tank?'

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Old 12-23-2004, 11:31 AM   #9
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I don't know if the rest of you are getting the same thing that I am, but the little ad window below the Previous Thread / Next Thread links at the end of this thread window is now showing links to places to buy slate tile It is paying attention to what we say.
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Old 12-23-2004, 01:26 PM   #10
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yep... slate tile ads... let's see if we can get ads for...

underwear
lingere
undergarments
boxers
briefs
panties
bras
underwear underwear underwear underwear underwear underwear underwear

to stay on topic: i've been wanting to do a brick wall [underwear] background on one of my tanks but couldn't figure out how (underwear) to do it without buying full size bricks and making a monster of a mess trying to make it look real. i never considered tile that *underwear* looks like brick. i'll be sure to ^underwear underwear^ cruise the #underwear# tile section the next time I'm at Lowe's, my underwear improvement underwear super underwear center.

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Old 12-23-2004, 03:56 PM   #11
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didn't work oqsy, still getting the slate ads.

I don't work for Lowe's, but I work for a company that takes care of products in lowe's stores, so when I'm not busy, I wander around thinking of what I can use in a different way... lots of neat things in there !
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Old 12-23-2004, 08:55 PM   #12
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cool, do you supply lowe's with UNDERWEAR?

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Old 12-23-2004, 09:53 PM   #13
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nope, no UNDERWEAR from me. I do the National Geographic, Hayes, Coleman, Garden Treasure, Little Giant, Maccourt, Fiskers and a few others.
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Old 12-25-2004, 01:20 AM   #14
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Neoprene. It's neoprene, not norprene. Still a good idea though.
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