View Full Version : Another background idea. YOUR THOUGHTS?

Lady Hobbs
07-22-2007, 04:23 PM
I've been reading on rock backgrounds for some time. I've seen just Styrofoam rock siliconed directly to the glass, I've seen them done in resin, in Quikrete and just using epoxy paints. I've seen "rocks" formed in 6 inches of styrofoam and also the 1 inch of foam with rocks glued to that.

I even have enough "rocks" cut out for the cement method but now I have a brainstorm.

I've been kicking around something totally different and need to see what you think of this or is this just something stupid I have dreamed up. (It's OK to say.) LOL

Why couldn't a person put the silicone all over the back of their tank and pour on the same gravel (or sand) that's used for the bottom? Having the same continuous color should make the tank look larger, I would think. You could also glue on branches, star fish or whatever else you thought would look cool.

You could make blops of Great Stuff (expanding foam) so it's not totaly flush and even glue on PVC pipe that's been cut in half length-wise to hide filter pipes covering that, as well.

I have not seen this done anywhere on the net so wonder if I'm nuts or would this work. No curing would be needed, everything is toxic free, moss could adhere to it easily and you would not lose a bunch of footprint that Styrofoam would take up.

One point I see no where on these rock backgrounds is the event of a leaking tank. To me, one more extra precaution should be taken and that would be adding extra silicone to the whole back seams before doing any type of background.

OK. Let me have it. http://cichlidforums.com/images/smilies/eek.gif

I might try this just for fun with my 10 gallon.

07-22-2007, 04:30 PM
Ive thought about that too. You would need a TON of silicon, and you would have to smooth it into an even sheet with a credit card, to have equal distribution.

I dont see why it wouldnt work. I think im finally going to set up a 10 gallon breeder for the baby guppies, so this is an option for the background when i sell them all off.

Lady Hobbs
07-22-2007, 04:37 PM
GM Silicone 1 (never the 2) is supposed to be a good adhesive and toxic free as is the epoxy. I would use a gun, spead it on thick then spread it out with a board or a ruler. Dang! I need my credit cards!!!!! :)

That Great Stuff is very hard but is yellow. A person might want to paint those blops with epoxy paint incase it's hard to cover them well.

It seems to me if this was such a great idea it would be somewhere on the net but I haven't seen it anywhere/

07-22-2007, 04:46 PM
it would be alot of work doing it yourself, but it looks cool. aquagiant here has a foam wood style in-tank background and a 3-d tunnel rock foam one. its cheap, about 2$ a foot.

07-22-2007, 04:54 PM
Seems like you would need to be careful with it or else it would peel off - no HOB filters etc. but I bet it would look pretty cool

Lady Hobbs
07-22-2007, 04:55 PM
The gravel or sand would be no work really. No foam blocks to cut, form or burn. No covering with concrete and letting it cure for 2-4 weeks. No painting and trying to cover up any traces of the Styrofoam. Spread out the silicone, dump the gravel or sand on, press it down (sand in the cracks would be good for filling in little spaces) and letting it dry for 2 days.

Easy as heck. But how would it look? LOL I'm gonna do it. I only use my 10 gallon for emergencies anyway.

Lady Hobbs
07-22-2007, 04:58 PM
Seems like you would need to be careful with it or else it would peel off - no HOB filters etc. but I bet it would look pretty cool

What would peel? You could cover the filter tubes with pvc.

07-22-2007, 05:08 PM
You could scrape it taking the the thing on and off to clean it - I clean mine out every so often to keep the gunk off the propeller.

The gravel is odd shaped - so some of it will be stuck on really good and some of it will just have a corner stuck in

Lady Hobbs
07-22-2007, 05:46 PM
You just have no faith in your pal Hobbs. I am into a great invention here. LOL

A might make a couple blobs out of Great Stuff, stick my filter tube into it before it sets up to get a good grove for the filter tube instead of PVC pipe. I don't want fish getting stuck. If there is room, will cram filter floss in there to keep them out.

NOW. If I could get my d*** car to start I would get to the store and get my project going. Battery is not making a connection and the bloody thing is buried under all the other stuff under the hood. Why would GM bury a battery like that? Jerks

07-22-2007, 05:49 PM
Why build a simple car when you can build a complicated car? After all...mechanics DO need work too!

07-22-2007, 05:55 PM
My wife has a dodge - you have to take the front tire off to get at the battery. No Kidding!

I have plenty of faith in you Lady Hobbs - I am positive you can do it and it will look great!

07-22-2007, 06:58 PM
Take the TIRE off to get at the battery? Bizarre.

Lady, I think the idea is a good one. Spread the silicone on relatively thick, I'm thinking like maybe a good 1/8 inch so that the rock has enough of a grip on the silicone (or vice versa, whatever). Not sure how it will look, it may actually make the tank look smaller, but I just can't see it in my head. I think it might depend on what gravel you use. Maybe the small black gravel would give a good look? Or blue to simulate deep water? Great idea. I have an idle 10 gallon, too. If yours turns out maybe I'll try it, too.

Be sure to post pictures!

07-22-2007, 07:31 PM
Scratching up the back glass would help the silicon adhere better, but i dont know if that will comprimise the structual integrety of the tank or not. Tanks are cheap, give it a shot!

07-22-2007, 07:42 PM
Run 120 grit sandpaper over it a bit, won't affect the integrity of the tank at all. Great idea to contribute, Drum.

Lady Hobbs
07-22-2007, 07:54 PM
Good idea. Got the tank apart now so will get to it when I get to it and get the stuff I need. I am sure this is going to work. If it doesn't, this thread will go into the sunset and I will not mention it again. If it works, I will be screaming about it in every post.

07-22-2007, 08:21 PM
I think it will work. No, wait. I KNOW it will work! Goooooooo Lady Hobbs!

Lady Hobbs
07-22-2007, 08:29 PM
You guys just wait. This will be so darned awesome you will swear it was invented by a guy! LOL

07-22-2007, 08:37 PM
Ohhhhhh, I don't know about that. Momma didn't raise me to be gender-biased. She would have kicked me in the a$$.

Can't wait to see the finished product!!!

07-22-2007, 09:26 PM
It does sound really cool! if it works out i may just have to try it lol

Lady Hobbs
07-23-2007, 05:39 AM
I've been busting my brains half the day wondering how to cover up the filter tubes. I mean, who cares if they show. They show when you have a piece of paper glued to the back don't they? This was supposed to be an easy project and already I'm making it hard.

Why does everything end up complicated.

07-23-2007, 05:40 AM
Why does everything end up complicated.

Human nature maybe?

Heck, if you really didnt want your tubes to show, you could silicone heck out of them and add sand/gravel to the tube.

Lady Hobbs
07-23-2007, 05:57 AM
Actually I thought of that as well but knew everytime I removed them I'd have the stuff falling off. Probably not a good idea for it to get in the motor.

At least THIS stress has gotten me away for the OTHER stress. LOL

07-23-2007, 05:59 AM
Actually I thought of that as well but knew everytime I removed them I'd have the stuff falling off. Probably not a good idea for it to get in the motor.

At least THIS stress has gotten me away for the OTHER stress. LOL

We need to have an AC beach party or somthing. This has been a rough week.

07-31-2007, 03:54 AM
You could maybe cut pvc in half lengthwise and silcone and cover in gravel/sand. Put it in the corner of the tank and adhere it with suction cups to keep out fish and to keep it in place. You could also do this to make it blend into the rest of the background by leaving a space on the glass free of gravel that is the same size as the pvc. This way the cords and tubes would be hidden and you could still get at them easily. Maybe the same could be done to hide a heater too but you would probably need to drill lots of big holes in the pvc and use a larger size pipe.

Lady Hobbs
07-31-2007, 04:02 AM
I will try to hide filters when I do the rock foam background (next in line) but I know my loaches would crawl into anything much I put over the filter tubes. I thought of stuffing it with fiber then thought, I am going to stick with easy on this one. Throw and go. LOL

08-07-2007, 04:18 AM
Sounds like a goood idea hobbs.

08-30-2007, 06:06 AM
I know this thread is kind of old and I don't know if you're still working on this...but years ago I cut a pvc (pcv?) pipe in half and cut irregular holes in the front as sort of like a tunnel or caves for the fish to swim through. I used this as a base and then took flat plexiglass and cut it into the shape of mountains and mounted this on the top of the pipe.

I siliconed matching gravel all over this so it did give the tank depth. The fish loved it and I could remove it to clean if necessary. Just a thought if you're worried about compromising the integrity of the glass. Got no pics, this was before cell phone and digital cameras and the thing got broke during a move, I was bummed.

Please post pics though, if you do this. That would be cool.


12-03-2009, 02:08 AM
I see this thread is very old, but did you ever get around to trying it out?

Lady Hobbs
12-03-2009, 02:12 AM
Nope. Never did.

12-03-2009, 02:29 AM
Well what are we waiting for? I spent all this time working on mine, and then I read this. I thought to myself,"u got to b freakin kidding!?" I never thought about how simple this was and how it just may work. My brain can usually figure out complex problems, but why oh why do I over look simplicity?!

Lady Hobbs
12-03-2009, 02:31 AM
I had all the foam cut but messing around with cement in my apartment, waiting for it to cure, yadda, yadda, was something I didn't want to mess around with. Not much work area in an apartment.

The tank needs to "cure" for about a week after you fill it with water, too.

12-03-2009, 02:42 AM
nevertheless it was a pretty good idea

12-03-2009, 04:34 AM
I realize this is an old thread, but just a slight recommendation.
I wouldn't put silicone on the back of the tank. If you don't like the look or mess it, its going to be a pain to change. Instead, consider getting a piece of acrylic and cut to the size of the back of your tank. Then perform your mods to the acrylic, then mount to the back of the tank.
Same look, but the benefit of making it easily removable and changable.

12-03-2009, 04:38 AM
A razor blade to clean the bulk of the silicone and a rag with paint thinner will remove the rest in seconds.:19:

12-03-2009, 04:40 AM
A razor blade to clean the bulk of the silicone and a rag with paint thinner will remove the rest in seconds.:19:

You'd have to empty the tank to do that if you applied it directly to the back glass :scry:

Wild Turkey
12-03-2009, 05:17 AM
In regards to the original post, Im planing on trying something similar on a small tank soon so I'll post how it goes
I have seen it done before so I wasnt anticipating any problems but you never know

03-25-2010, 12:49 PM
may be using some thin foam will work.......................placing silicon on the foam.........then just add gravel or sand............walla...........:hmm3grin2orange:

Lady Hobbs
03-25-2010, 03:03 PM
This thread is 3 years old! I am closing it.