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DIY styrofoam background + rocks

Discussion in 'DIY Projects and Ideas' started by the_deeb, Dec 28, 2011.

  1. the_deeb

    the_deeb
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    Picked up a new 65g tall aquarium and am making a 3D background for it. I'm going to use a similar technique to the one that I used for the styrofoam tree roots that I made for my paludarium, but this time I'm going with a rocky theme (planning to set up the tank as a Tanganyikan community).

    I think one of the problems with adding real rocks to a tank with a 3D background is that they don't match the color of the background and end up making the background look fake. So to get around this I'm also going to carve some matching rocks.

    This is how it starts:

    P1050792.JPG
     
  2. the_deeb

    the_deeb
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    Here's the basic outline of the background and styrofoam stacked and siliconed to make the rough shapes of the foreground rocks. I decided to do a partial background instead of a full background (will eventually be painting the back of the tank black).

    P1050793.JPG

    P1050793.JPG
     
  3. the_deeb

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    Basic shape of the foreground rocks carved. More layers of styrofoam cut and stacked onto the background to add some depth. I also added some more styrofoam to make a column of "rock" going from the bottom to the top on the left hand side of the tank.

    P1050794.JPG

    P1050794.JPG
     
  4. the_deeb

    the_deeb
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    Carve carve carve....

    P1050796.JPG

    and I ended up with this for the background:

    P1050804.JPG

    and here's the whole ensemble:

    P1050797.JPG

    P1050796.JPG

    P1050804.JPG

    P1050797.JPG
     
  5. JK47

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    Your work with DIT backgrounds is VERY inspiring.. I will be following this for sure :thumbsup:
     
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  6. H]-[H

    H]-[H
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    Very Nice!
     
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  7. sashimimaster

    sashimimaster
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    Very nice sculpting. I like the windswept look.
     
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  8. jadedreams

    jadedreams
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    Good job, liked the way you stacked them for depth.
     
  9. anarekist

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    wow impressive.
     
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  10. the_deeb

    the_deeb
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    Thanks for the comments.

    I decided to carve some caves and tunnels into the rocks. This will hopefully serve two purposes:
    1) to provide the fish with caves to hide in
    2) to increase the water volume in the tank and reduce the buoyancy of the rocks

    I designed them so that they're reasonably inconspicuous from the front view:

    P1050798.JPG

    but larger and more hollowed out in the back where they'll be hidden from view:

    P1050799.JPG

    For the smallest rocks I just created single tunnels, but for the larger ones I created interconnecting tunnels with multiple entrances (hard to capture in the pics)

    P1050802.JPG

    I'm pretty happy with these - they've turned the rocks from being big lumps of foam into more functional and usable space in the tank

    P1050798.JPG

    P1050799.JPG

    P1050802.JPG
     

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