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Hardscape help

Discussion in 'General Aquascaping and Planted Tank Discussions' started by raf25, Mar 7, 2016.

  1. raf25

    raf25 New Member

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    Hi guys, I'm working on setting up my 6 gallon tank. I wanted to get some opinions on my current hardscape before I moved forward! I have a bag of Aquasoil powder that I want to use to make the slope a bit higher, and also fill in between the rocks so I can plant Monte Carlo throughout and in the foreground. I'm thinking maybe a plant like blyxa for the background. [​IMG]


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  2. J Art

    J Art Aspiring Aquascaper

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    Newbie here so take with a grain of salt....

    I like your rock formation a lot. I feel the driftwood sort of takes the scale away though. I can definitely see what you're doing and how the shapes of the wood and the rock go together...there's just something that clashes about it and I can't quite put my finger on it.

    I'd probably vote for removing the driftwood if you keep the rock formation as is. The monte carlo will compliment it really well and you'll have a whole lot of scale going on in such a small space.

    If you keep the driftwood, the rocks may have to be re-positioned to fit the scale of the wood. Right now it seems to be a battle of elements.

    Others may know how to tie them together better though....
     
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  3. keithgh

    keithgh Moderator Staff Member

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    raf25

    Welcome to ASW

    [​IMG]

    Looks like you are off to a good start.

    A few points for you to consider.

    Make the Substrate level across the front.

    Make the back LH & RH corners higher.

    The twiggy pieces of DW at the front look out of place and are rather distracting to your over all Aquascape.

    Just a few points for you to consider.

    Keith:cat::cat:
     
  4. raf25

    raf25 New Member

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    Thanks for the swift replies!!

    I wasn't sure about the wood, I ordered it especially for this tank so I wanted to utilize it, but I do agree that it kind of throws off the scale. Do you all think that trimming some of the branches from the main piece will help at all?

    I'll definitely even out the front substrate and make the back corners higher too, I have about 3l more of Aquasoil that should do the trick


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  5. keithgh

    keithgh Moderator Staff Member

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    raf25


    [​IMG]
    I would try various positions after you remove that piece of DW to see how it looks "It might work" only you can see it exactly as it is.

    At the moment that is the last thing I would do.

    Keith:cat::cat:
     
  6. ShadowMac

    ShadowMac Moderator Staff Member

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    I am in agreement with J Art. Your planting plan would work much better without the driftwood. Creating a nice island mound of stone in the center with blyxxa behind and monte carlo carpeting around would give a nice scape.

    I think you should try some stone arrangements with this in mind and see what you come up with.
     
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  7. keithgh

    keithgh Moderator Staff Member

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    raf25

    That is another good alternative work with both and post a few photos for us to have a look at for you.

    Keith:cat::cat:
     
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  8. raf25

    raf25 New Member

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    Well after playing around with it for a while I decided that the wood does really detract from the scale of the tank, and I really liked the mountain-esque look of the scape. So I removed it. These two were my favorite arrangements for the stones. [​IMG][​IMG]

    In the second scape I added the Aquasoil powder to try to get my slope a bit higher. What do you guys think?


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  9. keithgh

    keithgh Moderator Staff Member

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    I prefer the first Aquascape but for some reason its missing that WOW factor and at the moment.
    [​IMG]

    I cropped the photo to eliminate all the distractions.

    It was the top rock as a feature rock it looked bland not much character at all.

    I moved the front rock up to see how it would look.

    The top rock I would think of placing it where that now top rock was.

    Is this possible?

    I am also not 110% sure about the shaping of the substrate yet.

    Keith:cat::cat:
     
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  10. Ed Villagracia

    Ed Villagracia Active Aquascaper

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    sorry but i see no harmony with the present rocks arrangement.
    play again with the rocks layout and try to rearrange almost in the middle of
    your tank. leaving ample space to the front for foreground plant of your choice.
    it will give you the impression of a bigger tank and not overcrowded.
    just my personal opinion.
     
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  11. J Art

    J Art Aspiring Aquascaper

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    @keithgh 's suggestion is the right track to go. Iwagumi examples always have that slanted rock that you're incorporating....but the setup that you have will likely fit better as a majestic, upright mountain/island layout.

    The second one sort of loses its cohesiveness.

    Personally, I still like your original setup minus the driftwood and maybe switching the main rock with the one that was in the front left, per keith's suggestion.

    Keep trying new things. It took me 2 weeks of tweaking with the help of the people here to get it right. It can be frustrating but stick with it. It's worth the time/effort at this critical stage of setup.
     
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  12. keithgh

    keithgh Moderator Staff Member

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    raf

    I hope you are not getting confused with these suggestions.

    J Art has possibly given you the best advice you could receive.

    Keith:cat::cat:
     
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  13. raf25

    raf25 New Member

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    Keith: A little, but I get the gist of what you guys are saying! I definitely didn't expect to get it perfect on the first try and I'm thankful for the help!

    I'm really trying to work on more of a majestic mountain look, and working on getting more harmony with the rocks. I've been playing around with different scapes this evening I'll post some pictures later


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  14. keithgh

    keithgh Moderator Staff Member

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  15. raf25

    raf25 New Member

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    So after playing with it for a while, taking all the rocks out, putting them in different spots. These are the three I liked best [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]

    Thoughts?


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  16. ScrambledEggs

    ScrambledEggs New Member

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    I'm a complete newbie but the first one appeals to me most.
     
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  17. J Art

    J Art Aspiring Aquascaper

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    I agree with @ScrambledEggs . The first of the 3 new ones you posted looks best. You might want to bury the stone up front just a little more to make it a little smaller looking.

    Also, you will probably want to put in some sort of substrate supports with all that height or it will droop over time. I used old starbucks giftcard/credit cards, lol. They work pretty well. Just put them in there like little retaining walls to keep things from sliding.

    It's going to look awesome with a nice carpet of monte carlo.

    What are you thinking for background? Are you painting black? keeping open?
     
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  18. raf25

    raf25 New Member

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    Thanks guys!

    J: There's actually substrate supports in there, that's what those cut up pieces of plant pot are next to the tank lol! They've been a huge help

    Also it's probably hard to see but I put a frosted glass privacy film on the back of the tank, so that will function as the background. But yeah I'm excited it's coming together and I can't wait to get some plants in there!!


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  19. ScrambledEggs

    ScrambledEggs New Member

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    Do people actually paint the glass black? I've just used vinyl on mine.

    What paint works on glass? I've only seen tiny pots of craft paint for glass and I don't think they would go very far or be very resistant to wear and tear?
     
  20. raf25

    raf25 New Member

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    I've heard of people doing it, probably just regular house paint or something. But I've always done black vinyl. The clear is different but I've seen it used on ADA style tanks and it's very clean looking. I've also got some color changing LEDs behind the tank which was an idea I got from another post here!


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