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I'm setting up my aquarium tomorrow or the next day and I totally forgot about background....just curious if anyone has any ideas or tips? I saw a black background at a petsmart that I figured I would get if I don't think of anything else. So anyone who reads this and has some tips, I would be greatly appreciative!
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Honeycomb Master
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I'm setting up my aquarium tomorrow or the next day and I totally forgot about background....just curious if anyone has any ideas or tips? I saw a black background at a petsmart that I figured I would get if I don't think of anything else. So anyone who reads this and has some tips, I would be greatly appreciative!
If your aquarium is not filled/set up yet, then DEFINITELY paint the background. I forget what kind of paint you can use, but a lot of people paint the back glass black and it looks really nice.

The black backgrounds from petsmart work well too, but it doesn't look very good when water gets in between the glass and the background. Just have to make sure that doesn't happen.
 

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I've been using pieces of 50% opaque acrylic outside the tanks for backgrounds. I find it tend to give the tank a feeling of extra depth and spaciousness. While I do like tanks with black backgrounds I'm finding that I like the opaque white backgrounds better.
chi-ching, that's my 2 cents worth.
 

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My tank currently is 4-5 inches from a beige wall as backdrop and I am liking it. I painted a bit of cord cover and to my surprise the flat wall color is disguising the cover quite well. I put the filter in/out stuff is on the side and the heater is in the sump. I will find a bit of plastic and make a planter box cover as well soon to hide those if they stay. I didn't care for a light background ON the back glass, it made the tank look very shallow. I took off a black trash bag that had been on for about 9 years which made my 60" by 22" open top tank a black hole with lights off and it is nice to be able to see inside when lights are off now. If I change my mind and the tank is down I would definitely paint the back glass. The bag was quite good but the folds did reflect light and a bit of water did get behind it over the years.

Put the tank in its spot with lights sitting on top and turn the lights on and off and see what you think.
 

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The black backgrounds from petsmart work well too, but it doesn't look very good when water gets in between the glass and the background. Just have to make sure that doesn't happen.
If only that could really happen, that would be awesome. LOL

I used flat black krylon outdoor paint. Cover the sides and opening of the tank to prevent overspray. Regular masking tape and newspaper works great for that. Give it several light, even coats (the can will tell you this too if you are a reader of directions). Wait about an hour so the paint is dry to the touch before you move it. Be careful, it is dry to the touch but if you bump it, it will easily scratch. It will be completely cured in 24 hours. Then you can scape till your heart's content.
 

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I just painted a new small 2.5 gallon tank (glass) black with normal flat black acrylic paint - did three coats - letting each one dry and it took about 5 minute for each layer and 10 minutes dry time between each coat. I did the same to another tank 3 years ago and it still does not have a scratch on it. I used the black film at the same time on another tank and within a year it look pretty back once water started getting behind it. It annoys me now and will be painting that tank black this weekend between water changes... Also, I found painting it with a brush easier and if I went over the edge a bit on the sides or top, I could wipe it off with a damp paper towel before it dried for nice clean egdes and no taping required as there is for spray paint. Good luck on your new tank set up, we can't wait to see it!

Duff
 

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So you just get a normal can of black spray paint, tape up the whole inside of the aquarium, and spray the back a few times? I feel like I'll eff it up.
Just making sure you know to paint the outside of the back of the tank, not the inside. (I know I know, I'm stating the obvious, sorry about that, just wasn't sure what you meant by taping up the inside of the aquarium:redface:)

I used a roller since I painted mine inside and didn't want spray everywhere. I used black enamel chalkboard paint which has a matt finish - looks great. Some have suggested to tape newspaper or something similar over it once it has dried to protect it from scratches in the black paint by equipment etc.
 

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You'll be fine! It sounds like you covered everything pretty good so I would'nt worry about it. I've painted about 5 or 6 tanks already and it just looks so much better than any store bought backround. It just gives it so much more depth!
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Make your life easy... Use car window tint. Limo black. No spray, fumes, mess and it peels off.
Hmm...never thought of that. Would be much easier but I assume it's gotta be more pricey than 3.58 a can of spray paint.
 
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