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Substrate Help!

Discussion in 'General Aquascaping and Planted Tank Discussions' started by Grimreaperz, Jul 30, 2017.

  1. Grimreaperz

    Grimreaperz New Member

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    Awesome input I will be playing with it more today!! Yes I want to black out the back and side that the background is on. This is the same background but it has now been coated in 3 coats of cement and I have removed some of the "rocks" to make it less square and blocky looking. And I found these rocks at a pet store for $2.49CAD/lbs saw same type at another for $19.99CAD/kg.

    I'm waiting for the silicone to fully cure and cement to finish fully drying before I fill and start curing. This is used eco complete Substrate ontop of Flourite clay substrate that I am Just using to get the idea of things I have another bag of Flourite and a new bag of eco complete i will most likely swap it all at time of planting. I will be getting Flourite tabs for my substrate when it comes time to plant as well.

    I'll make my moves and substrate smoothing and post more pics tonight.

    I was doing my rocks and substrate before I siliconed my backgroud so forgot to smooth it out after messing with it to the the background in ..... derp!

    Ahaha sorry didn't notice my spelling mistake thanks for that
    I'm horrible mobile user....autocorrect gets me
     
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  2. Grimreaperz

    Grimreaperz New Member

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    Can I use this wood after it's been soaked for a while I found people saying the Java Wood was okay but haven't seen anything on the Reptile Exo terra wood and there is 1-2 really nice pieces I want but it's not the Java Wood stuff

    [​IMG][​IMG]

    EDIT: after further investigation the Reptile exo terra wood forest branches are sandblasted grape vibes and may contain metal wires in them...also due to being so light aren't recommended.
     
    Last edited: Aug 7, 2017
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  3. keithgh

    keithgh Moderator Staff Member

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    Grimreaperz

    Grape vines are a real NONO for aquariums because of all the sprays used. Being light is not an actual problem as they can be held down by rocks or slate SS screwed to them then placed under the substrate.

    Keith:cat::cat:
     
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  4. John Whatmough

    John Whatmough New Member

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    That was my problem in hindsight,think I didn't play with lighting options enough because at the time it was no CO2 and low tech
     
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  5. keithgh

    keithgh Moderator Staff Member

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    John

    As Shawn stated finding that "sweet spot" takes time as you will not see the results immediately. Then there is the Substrate, Ferts and the water, to find that spot it takes time and experience. If you are High Tech there is another factor to add in.`

    Keith :cat::cat:
     
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  6. Grimreaperz

    Grimreaperz New Member

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    So here is everything after it's been painted and I move the rocks you suggested and have started smoothing the substrate I still need to add the black sand to cover all the clay Flourite. So probably tonight I will have substrate done and fill to start the curing process of my background

    [​IMG]
     
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  7. keithgh

    keithgh Moderator Staff Member

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    Grimreaperz

    Looking good so far except one stone, the flat stone in the open space. It looks out of place with all the other sculptured rocks? Do you have any rocks similar to the other four but a little smaller to place about the LH end of that rock.

    Are you going to add any mosses to the large corner you built or are you going to let age gracefully as if in nature?

    Keith:cat::cat:
     
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  8. Grimreaperz

    Grimreaperz New Member

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    So sand fall didn't work how I was expecting....even though I tested.....ugh....anyways starting from scratch tomorrow and will most likely just still with natural hard scape and practice this Sandfall on a smaller tank until I have it mastered....it was working but my background wasn't directing the sand back to the pipe to make it continuous so bit of if an oops on my part. Live and learn.

    I'll keep this post updated with my progress. Thanks for all the help so far.[​IMG]
     
  9. keithgh

    keithgh Moderator Staff Member

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    Grimreaperz

    Are you going to leave that corner in? If it can be made very interesting with no alterations to it at all.

    It would involve moving and possibly changing the other rocks plus playing with the height of the substrate.

    Do you have any spare rocks that can be used for the RH side? DW ???

    Keith:cat::cat:
     
  10. Grimreaperz

    Grimreaperz New Member

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    No I ended up scrapping the corner piece....i was trying to get it out just to fix it a but but ended up breaking it. I have a small 10g setup to cycle while I clean and get the silicone off this 29g and start over.

    So far just simple and I am using rocks I found at the local river. I need to purchase more hard scape for the 29g so figured this 10g would be easy to start learning on with the Low Tech stuff. This is the Lid that came with it uses 2 compact fluorescents so hoping I can find some decently good lights for this hood.

    [​IMG][​IMG]
     
  11. Grimreaperz

    Grimreaperz New Member

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    This will probably be my plant list for the 10g. Haven't fully decided on foregroubd. But really like the looks of the Monte Carlo or Pearlweed. S repens is nice though!

    Dwarf Sag foreground for hill sides
    S repens/Monte Carlo/pearl weed? for divit

    Amazon Sword for midground Rside
    Bacopa for mid ground LSide

    Dwarf chain sword = background?
    Jungle Val for backgroud
     
  12. keithgh

    keithgh Moderator Staff Member

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    Grimreaperz

    Its a pity I was looking forward to working on that corner rocky cliff.

    Plants
    As its a learning tank which is an excellent idea.
    The first thing I would do would be remove those rocks, reason not required if testing plants and their growth.

    To give it a bit of interest I would have the substrate sloping from one of the back corners to an even height at the front. The front depth will depend of the type of plants you intend to use rooting plants require a greater depth than the surface plants.

    I would double check all those plants first to make sure they are all suitable for that Low tech small tank.

    It can be later used as a growing out, small fish breeding etc tank. All you need in that tank will be a few fish to help in controlling any natural algae.

    Keith:cat::cat:
     
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  13. Grimreaperz

    Grimreaperz New Member

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    Yeah I'm quite disaponted my self was pretty defeated as well. But I don't give up do there will be more to come!

    Can you give me an example of what you are talking about with the substrate? I do like the look of something in there maybe I'll remove 1. These are 3 t5 ballasts just laying in their side right now I need to get a hanging kit for them 6400k bulbs.[​IMG][​IMG]
     
  14. keithgh

    keithgh Moderator Staff Member

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    Grimreaperz

    [​IMG]

    I have removed the rocks and immediately you can see all the extra planting area
    Back RH 15cm
    Back LH 10cm
    Front 5cm
    Keith:cat::cat:
     
  15. keithgh

    keithgh Moderator Staff Member

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    Grimreaperz

    Here are a few basic ideas for you

    Keith:cat::cat:

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  16. Grimreaperz

    Grimreaperz New Member

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    Well looks likes I'm removing the rocks. I may leave a small one in there just for astetics but yeah I get what you mean now. I'll play with the substrate with our the rocks and take a pic once I'm happy with it. I still want it to look pretty and like a piece of art even though it's just a learning tank lol
     
  17. keithgh

    keithgh Moderator Staff Member

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    Grimreaperz

    For ease the first and last one are the simplest yet rather good. They are what I call KIS. Kiss It Simple. The other basic design rules are, More is less and less is more, and If in doubt leave it out.

    The biggest problem with those two rocks plus the substrate you could lose about 15% of your water capacity plus the water movement would not be evenly moving in the tank.

    Keith:cat::cat:
     
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  18. Grimreaperz

    Grimreaperz New Member

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    Still a bit murky from playing around but hows this looking? Trying to create a valley type thing. Any recommendations for plants that you think would compliment this scape nicely? I'm so new I'm kind of just watching videos and going on sites and seeing stuff that looks nice that are rated "Beginner" and that's how I came how up with my list. So would definitely like to hear from an experienced person such as your self on this front.[​IMG]
     
  19. Grimreaperz

    Grimreaperz New Member

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    This is the finished product with substrate only.[​IMG]
     
  20. keithgh

    keithgh Moderator Staff Member

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    Grimreaperz

    [​IMG]
    At the moment I can see a few concerns happening.

    The green lines represent where the "Slippage" can occur, this can be prevented by two methods making an under ground retaining wall using an old slate tiles or small rocks pushed into the slope.

    If you decide to use rocks do not place them in straight lines try to stagger them as in nature.

    Keith:cat::cat:
     
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