The Planted Tank Forum banner

1 - 20 of 21 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
25 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My first attempt at this. It is for a 70"x30"x24" freshwater tropical tank with sump.

Blue core styrofoam. Cut to size to fit either side of a central weir. Decided on a sedimentary style background.
The lines represent my intended layer separation.


Next I cut the channels. The vertical lines are a rough approximation of a horst and graben fault so I can cleanly separate each side into 2 pieces. This allows me to get the background into the tank through the fairly small openings between the bracing.



Next I weathered the surface using a wire brush and a woodfile. The lumps were then attached after using a grinder to hollow out the rear faces to form cups I can put plants in. I used aquarium safe silicone to attach and strengthened the placement with cocktail sticks.
After initial weathering, I then used a heat gun to gently melt and smoothen the surface.



Next I painted the background. I'm using non toxic, 100% acrylic paint.
Not sure on my 'artistic' interpretation of sedimentary rock but I'm happy with it for a first attempt.
I will then seal it with g4 pond sealer. This will alter the paintwork a bit but should add, not detract from the final article.

 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,439 Posts
Awesome write up and good job, I have wanted to do a 3D background for some time now just have not ever gotten around to it. Would love to see the finished product in the aquarium!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
25 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Sealing it this afternoon. Found on a test piece that it's best to let the acrylic dry for a few days to reduce smudging. Also stops the pond sealer softening the finished piece.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
794 Posts
Very nice. One question though what made you want to create a horst and graben formation.

Have a gniess day. -Scott
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
25 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
It handily concealed a split I needed to make to get the background in the tank. Can you fault me? It was an uplifting experience. :)

Night viewing. :D






 

·
Registered
Joined
·
25 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Right, the acrylic paint leaches a bit at first, staining the water slightly, BUT it isn't toxic like cement, just unsightly.
If you do go this route, you'll still need a massive waterchange after a few days but then that's it.

Have just planted the first wave. Will take pics later.
Thanks all :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
25 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
My filter.
Main filter compartment filled with some pond sponges, scrubbies and lava rock.
There's a heater in there somewhere too...



My refugium, 10w 6500k led floodlight on a 14hr timer. Cat litter substrate.



Secondary filter compartment, pond sponges, scrubbies and more lava rock. Another heater in there too. Overflows into pump chamber, pumping iro 4-5000lph.

 

·
Registered
Joined
·
25 Posts
Discussion Starter · #14 ·
This is the main tank. First wave of planting. Full daylight part of my fade in, fade out cycle. 2x 6500k 50w led floods and 2x 3500k 10w led floods. Will be adding another 30w 6500k flood soon.









 

·
Registered
Joined
·
91 Posts
Looks gorgeous! If I wasn't pining over my driftwood project, I'd consider trying this. Puns intended.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
512 Posts
Could you have put up a small panel infront of the blue middle to cover that or you wanted the blue part to show?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,439 Posts
How are you flood lights working out for you? I have read that they work well. I am working on setting up a 180 gallon and I want to run LEDs on it, I have been thinking about ordering a bunch of led modules from the bay and wiring them myself and getting heatsinks from a place I found online. But then I would have to deal with getting the drivers and all that mess, so I am considering going with the all-in-one floodlight deal.

As how is the background holding up? I am looking to create a foam background as well. A friend gifted me everything needed to do airbrushing minus the paint and this would be a good project to try it out with. I have been doing a far bit of research online and I definitely want to make something that looks like rocks (Some just simply don't look like rocks at all, sorry guys!), so I am going to practice paintings some. I also saw this gnarly DIY foam cutter but it was huge, I am going to try and make something a bit smaller, did you just use a regular tool like a knife or razor or did you use some sort of heated foam cutter?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,934 Posts
Kitchen scrubbies = bio-media.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,439 Posts
Kitchen scrubbies = bio-media.
Yup, and way cheaper than bio-balls, you can get the nice rainbow pack from the dollar store, think you get like six.

On a side note I also get my sponges for washing dishes there, $1 for 7 scrubby sponges, can't beat that.
 
1 - 20 of 21 Posts
Top