This is how I tinted the back of my aquarium. First though, I attempted to paint it and the results were less then outstanding
. Hope this helps someone. Pardon the image quality, I used my Env2 to take the pics.. camera was dead.
Things you will need
- Two spray bottles
- One roll of tinting film
- One piece of glass that is larger then tank side
- One tank (obviously lol)
- One bottle (or at least a cap full) of baby shampoo
- One credit card
- One roll of scotch tape
- Razor blade or box cutter
The first thing I did was go out and pick up two spray bottles from home depot. Unfortunately they only two they had were 4 bux a pop.. what a deal huh
. In one I put filtered water (not sure if you need it) and in the other I put 1 lid full of baby shampoo and filled it up about half way with water. I think any kind of soap would work that didn't have any kind of ammonia in it. The guy at the tint shop recommended baby shampoo so I used it.
The next thing I did was unroll the tint and cut it to the width (or close I guess) of the tank. The height of it was within probably an inch or two. I laid the tint on the tank to verify the fit (do this while its dry please).
Ok, now you want to clean the back side of the tank and while you're at it clean the spare piece of glass. I used glass cleaner and then cleaned it with the baby shampoo mixture.
Now take the spray bottle of just water and spray it on the piece of glass that you have. This will help the piece of tint stick to it while you prep the tank back.
The next step I took was to put a piece of scotch tape on each side of a corner of the tint. Sorry I didn't take a pic of all these steps because I didn't have my superb picture taking girlfriend to help me. Anyways, once you have the two pulled apart you need to figure out which is the tint and which is the protective backing. The protective backing will not stick to itself. The tint has an adhesive on it to stick to the glass. Once you get the corner separated and know which is which you put the tint side (it is still being protected by the backing!!) on the piece of glass (not the tank). Once it is sticking to the tank you can take the protective backing off. Spray some of the shampoo mixture on the tint to keep it from sticking to itself incase if you make a mistake.
Now you need to dampen the aquarium glass with the shampoo mixture. You should be able to see bubbles on the glass or the mixture could not have enough shampoo in it.
Now that the tank is damp you want to pull the piece of tint off the glass piece and lay it on the back of the tank. The shampoo mixture will allow you to move it around to get in the proper position. I guess you can use this technique for stickers on cars as well I believe.
Once it is where you want it you need to take your credit card and start pushing (works better then pulling) the shampoo mixture out from under the tint. I found that if I sprayed a little bit of the shampoo mix on the tint it helped to keep me from wrecking the tint. I worked the card from the middle out from top to bottom.
When it looks like you removed pretty much all of the mixture out you can cut the film. I cut the sides first. I did this on top of the side panes of glass that lay next to the back pane so that it would hide the cut. Next I cut the top and bottom edges. I would recommended spraying a little bit of the shampoo mixture on here too to lubricate the blade. I used the credit card as a straight edge to try to keep the blade from cutting to low on the tint. That would allow light to pass by.
As you can see on the top I cut the tint a little low and light is visible above the tint. That happened due to the fact that I didn't have the mixture on it to lubricate the blade I believe.. but not bad for the first attempt I guess.
After the tint is on and it has been cut and ALL the water has been removed from under it I put a piece of paper towel on the credit card and went across the tint a few times. After that I put the tank aside and let it fully dry.
And the final product with water, plants and everything else in it.
This was my first planted tank so pardon the tanks overall look. Still learning
. Like I said earlier I hope this helps someone who is wondering how to tint the back of their tank.
ps sorry about the large pic size admins... I tried to shrink them down but photobucket wasn't agreeing with me