Sharing a tip about backgrounds.... - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 11-09-2014, 02:01 PM Thread Starter
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Lightbulb Sharing a tip about backgrounds....

I thought I would post about a great way to cover the back of your tank, since I have never seen anyone, on any board, talk about doing this. When I started my nano tanks, I was looking for a cheap way to cover the back, and since I like black, I also wanted it to be flat black, to minimize reflection.

I was at a craft store, when I saw sheets of the kids craft foam, about 2 mm thick. I bought 2 of them which I really needed only 1, but they are handy for other things as well. I cut it to fit the back of the nano, attached it at the corners with 3M double sided tape, and it stuck very well. Do not skimp on the tape though. Get the 3M. (Scotch tape like tape, not the foam 2 sided tape.)

Recently, I was wishing I could do the 40b the same way, so out of curiosity I googled 'craft foam roll', and wallah, up pops 'Darice craft foam roll'. 36X60-perfect for larger tanks. $10.50 on Amazon. I am getting ready to do my 100 gal, and it will be a PITA because the current back is put on with Vaseline. Uggh. And I am not moving the tank, so should be interesting.

But, if you don't want to go through painting, and other methods, this works well. I am not going to use the 2 sided tape at the top or the bottom, where the frame is, but instead use packing tape. If you apply the 2 sided tape just to the edge, and leave about 1/4 of it hanging off the corner of the tank, you can trim it with a box knife, or razor blade before you place the foam, and you can't even see it. Press the foam down well.

You can see what it looks like in my profile, on the 40b tank. It also comes in other colors too, if you like something other than black.

My Toys; 100 gal. Clown Loach tank, 40 breeder community tank, 7.5 gal Emerald Rasboras, & Dwarf Cories, 17 Gal. Aquascaped Rimless Cube, Pygmy Cories, Embers, Dwarf Cories, Amano Shrimp, 3 plant/shrimp tanks, 300 gallon formal water lily pond, 150 gal. pond.

Last edited by LynneS22; 11-09-2014 at 04:24 PM. Reason: Clarify
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 11-09-2014, 04:13 PM
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I really love this idea! I was just wondering what kind of background to put on my 55
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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 11-09-2014, 04:19 PM Thread Starter
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Great! Glad I could help someone.

I just wanted to clarify something though, because it occurred to me, people might get the wrong tape. I am talking about The 3M scotch tape like tape, not the foamy stuff that you peel off the paper.

My Toys; 100 gal. Clown Loach tank, 40 breeder community tank, 7.5 gal Emerald Rasboras, & Dwarf Cories, 17 Gal. Aquascaped Rimless Cube, Pygmy Cories, Embers, Dwarf Cories, Amano Shrimp, 3 plant/shrimp tanks, 300 gallon formal water lily pond, 150 gal. pond.

Last edited by LynneS22; 11-09-2014 at 04:20 PM. Reason: Removed double post
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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 11-12-2014, 10:00 PM
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I've used that type of foam for other projects, and currently have some of the thicker stuff padding my tank/stand.

I've seen some that already has an adhesive on one side, so you might be able to get that instead of dealing with doublesided tape.
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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 11-13-2014, 01:50 PM
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Pretty cool idea. Does it lift off in the middle or I suppose you can reinforce with more doublesided tape?
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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 11-13-2014, 03:58 PM
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Similarly, I'm using foam board ( from Dollar Tree ) for my black backgrounds. Cut it to fit inside the trim. Use packing tape on the trim to hold it in place.


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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 11-13-2014, 09:32 PM
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I'm using the black foam core boards you can get at arts supply or office depot stores. Its pretty non reflective and I don't even need to attach it to the tank. I just cut it to size with an x-acto and my HOB filter holds it in place against the back.
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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 11-14-2014, 02:23 AM Thread Starter
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The boards might work ok on a smaller tank, but I needed 60" piece, non stop, no seam. The foam does not really need anything in the middle other that the packing tape on the frame, if you keep the slack out of it. I did my 100 today, which I did not move away from the wall, and I had to remove a background that was attached with packing tape, and Vaseline, ugh. I will be updating my tank pix tomorrow, too tired right now.

My Toys; 100 gal. Clown Loach tank, 40 breeder community tank, 7.5 gal Emerald Rasboras, & Dwarf Cories, 17 Gal. Aquascaped Rimless Cube, Pygmy Cories, Embers, Dwarf Cories, Amano Shrimp, 3 plant/shrimp tanks, 300 gallon formal water lily pond, 150 gal. pond.
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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 11-15-2014, 10:57 AM
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Here is a idea that works great for me. I am using black almost satin looking fabric with sticky velco on my 50 gal. and it looks great. Use the iron on for the fabric and sticky on back of tank. I put like 1 inch pieces on the corners and equally spaced pieces in middle of tank and fabric. Then if one wanted to you can change colors or any style of back ground with fabric, just have to iron on Velcro at same spacing on new frabrics
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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 11-15-2014, 11:10 AM
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Here's what I use go to any sign/ lettering shop they will sell you vinyl they cut the letters for signs out of it comes in every color under the sun and super easy to cut you can also order it off eBay, amazon anyway it's easy to apply and remove when and if the time comes it's waterproof works out great and fairly Cheap if you want to get creative you can use 2 colors such as a dark blue bottom going to lighter blue top to give u kinda a sky look effect check it out it's pretty nice stuff
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post #11 of 11 (permalink) Old 11-15-2014, 11:54 AM
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I use foam board underneath my tanks for a cushion, But never thought of using it as a background.
It just seems so much easier to use that instead of a paper poster background, Especially if your tank is established against a wall with no help.
Or you can tape a paper background to the foam board and when it's time to change it.. you can frame it and hang it on your wall...lol

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