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Thread: 75 Gallon DIY Background ( Finished)

  1. #1
    DIYFK member vanish's Avatar


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    75 Gallon DIY Background ( Finished)

    Since this is my first background, I am so far not trying anything particularly new.

    Sketching things out.

    Click here to enlarge

    Routing Depressions and cutting edges.

    Click here to enlarge

    Edges cut, split in half and starting rounding.

    Click here to enlarge

    Comparing rounded and heat gunnned to before.

    Click here to enlarge

    Test fit in tank.

    Click here to enlarge


    Next up will be to add some horizontal platforms / caves. They will be attached to the flat parts on the backplate.

  2. #2
    DIYFK member vanish's Avatar


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    Currently, the background goes all the way to the top of the tank and abuts the trim. I was prepared to silicone the whole thing in place, but a thought occurred to me. Couldn't one silicone horizontal bumpers to the bottom of the tank such that it pushes the background against the back glass to have it held in place? The purpose would be the ability to remove the background later by only destroying the bumpers rather than the background itself.

  3. #3
    DIYFK member Amoque's Avatar


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    I've thought the same! Either "bumpers" or a wide base to place under the substrate... I think that you might also use silicone to glue styrofoam blocks in place and then use acrylic "pins" to join the two. The pins could be removed and replaced when taking out the background.

  4. #4
    DIYFK member vanish's Avatar


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    Here we are with a few base coats (brushed) and the first detail coat (sponged). I want to do one more lighter detail coat, but might have to do two.

    Click here to enlarge

  5. #5
    DIYFK member CichlidPadawan's Avatar


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    Looking good! Not sure how that bumper idea would work. You would want to use something else besides more styrofoam to hold it down. That much styrofoam underwater is hard to hold down and the force of it trying to float would most likely bust a styrofoam bumper. I would silicone the whole thing if I was you.
    Last edited by CichlidPadawan; 04-13-2014 at 05:05 PM.



  6. #6
    DIYFK member Pikeman's Avatar


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    Looks great. I will be building a background for the tank I just got off Kijiji.
    ​AKA - Grandpa Fish to my 4 grandsons

  7. #7
    DIYFK member vanish's Avatar


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    Yeah, I'm going to silicone it in. Was just throwing it out there! Click here to enlarge

  8. #8
    DIYFK member vanish's Avatar


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    Last detail coat is on. Here it is test fitting before silicone. The "black bars" are shadows from the overhead lighting and there's some reflection from my desk.

    Click here to enlarge

  9. #9
    DIYFK member vanish's Avatar


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    75G is filled and the haze is clearing. I'm awaiting a new light and then I'll post some pics!

  10. #10
    DIYFK member vanish's Avatar


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    New light won't be in for a few days, but here's a pic of the tank with the room lighting this morning. Not set on the layout at all. I plan to add some Amazon swords, maybe Java Fern for some color. The fake driftwood / rock house will be replaced lots of gnarly cholla when the in-laws bring it up from Tucson.

    Nothing is stocked in here yet even though I am running a canister I had doing extra filtering on my other tank. I have a new test kit coming in so I will probably wait until I get it to verify parameters.

    newtankbg.jpg

  11. #11
    DIYFK member cfosgate's Avatar


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    Nice job.
    Using Tapatalk

  12. #12
    DIYFK member vanish's Avatar


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    Full Tank shot from Saturday morning. The fish really love to move my substrate around. I wanted to do live plants but the way they are pulling up the artificials, I dunno.

    Click here to enlarge

  13. #13
    DIYFK member vanish's Avatar


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    Does anyone know how to edit the post title in the listings to show that this is done? I edited the first post to say finished, but the listing still shows WIP.

    Also, the current residents of the tank are, which is very much subject to change as I didn't plan ANY of these fish Click here to enlarge :

    1 Common Pleco 'Armstrong'
    2 Convict Cichlids, 'Lump' and 'Niles'
    2 Rams Cichlids (unknown strain)
    5 Bleeding Heart Tetras
    2 Green Glo Tetras (being given to a friend)
    7 Black Mollies (probably going)
    2 Golden Mystery Snails

    I had my crayfish 'Gary' in there but he figured out the background and climbed out within hours. Found him 30 feet away several rooms over. He's now in his own temp tank with a couple random fish.

  14. #14
    Divine Moderator Divinehammer's Avatar


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    There you go title edited so say it's finish as you requested ( my first official act as a ModClick here to enlarge)

    nice looking background came out really good!Click here to enlarge watch that plastic log I have had to smash 2 of them to get my Convicts out of them after they got stuck inside of them. Click here to enlarge
    Canadian Pleco lover! Soon to be built DIY 2000 Gallon RTC tank, Go Big Or Go Home!

  15. #15
    DIYFK member vanish's Avatar


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    Most of the school of Bleeding Heart Tetras

    Click here to enlarge

    One of the Bolivian Rams (yay, figured that out, still trying to sex them, I think they are both males)

    Click here to enlarge

  16. #16
    DIYFK member ckloetstra's Avatar


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    Looks awesome! Great closeup pictures too!

  17. #17
    DIYFK member Bear's Avatar


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    Very awesome project, great job, it looks really amazing.

  18. #18
    DIYFK member viper0397's Avatar


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    That is incredible! I really like what you did there! Awesome job!

  19. #19
    DIYFK member vanish's Avatar


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    Thanks all! It was a fun project.

    My #1 tip to anyone making one of these is to USE MORE FOAM and carve it down. The foam is cheap so you have no reason to be skimpy. Take your time it really cut some detail and shapes into it. The horizontal members I did with a single small piece of foam don't look nearly as good as the bottom right corner where I used a big chunk and carved a lot of it away.

    I was worried about losing water volume if I added more foam, but I would have carved more caves and such, and the fish love the caves.

    PS: I am submitting this for Project of the Month, I'll let you know when voting starts. Click here to enlarge

  20. #20
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  21. #21
    Moderator RBrown's Avatar


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    Nice job I hadn't seen this!!Click here to enlarge
    Ferengi
    Rule of Acquisition
    #217 You can't free a fish from water.
    The Unwritten Rule: "When no appropriate rule applies... make one up!

  22. #22
    DIYFK member Amoque's Avatar


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    I think you're being too hard on yourself - the whole tank looks really awesome. Thanks for posting!

  23. #23
    DIYFK member probo's Avatar


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    awesome man... inspiration for my own background.. thanks..

  24. #24
    DIYFK member gh74's Avatar


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    I like the BG good job Click here to enlarge i would love to attemt one for my rio 240 but just the glueing of the BG is a nightmare coz what if i were to get fed-up looking at it it be a killer to remove it etc.

  25. #25
    Moderator megaphoenix's Avatar


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    Click here to enlargeVery nicely done. I love it.
    DIYFishkeepers.com, bringing the world together one tank at a time.

  26. #26
    DIYFK member Stryf's Avatar


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    looks good
    2300 Gal pond: 7 Koi, 2 Goldfish, 2 Catfish
    125 Gal: 1 Reticulated Stingray, 2 Bala Shark, 3 Neon Tetra, 1 Glo Fish, and several guppies.

  27. #27
    DIYFK member vanish's Avatar


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    Two months in and the background is holding up just fine.

  28. #28
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    Three month update. Everything holding up pretty well. Starting to get a bit of brown algae growing on the background, mostly because I switched to live plants and have been running stronger lighting longer. I don't mind it though as it feels a bit more natural to me.

    Click here to enlarge

  29. #29
    DIYFK member sincere01's Avatar


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    That looks great!

  30. #30
    DIYFK member vanish's Avatar


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    My Lady Bristlenose is LOVING the deep crevices between the rocks in the background. Of course, this means she is really hard to find most of the time.

    I can tell that's where fry and/or shrimp would hang out.

    Click here to enlarge

    Can you spot her?

    Click here to enlarge

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