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Old 10-27-2008, 04:45 AM
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Default red clay substrate

Anyone have any suggestions on finding/using a red clay type substrate to mimic an eroded slope?
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Old 10-28-2008, 07:07 PM
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Default Re: red clay substrate

Well, im not too sure how well it would work because its kind of grainy(like really small pebbles) but maybe try laterite. Its a very common substrate for planted aquariums and is a really nice red color. sorry, i am kind of computer illiterate so i cant give you a link, but i do know you can get it at Drs Foster and Smith. Its called First Layer Pure Laterite.
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Old 10-28-2008, 07:19 PM
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Default Re: red clay substrate

I think the hardest part for making an eroded slope from pure clay is it was fall apart when wet. You may want to try making a fake one out of foam and morter.

Here is everything you want to know about clay based substrate.
http://www.dendroboard.com/forum/gen...te-thread.html
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Last edited by Jason; 10-28-2008 at 07:21 PM. Reason: Added link.
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Old 10-28-2008, 08:31 PM
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Default Re: red clay substrate

I have a clay drip wall set up in a 29 gallon test terraria where the drip wall runs 24/7 for over 2 years now and only had one or two pieces fall out of it (more due to me pulling some unwanted ferns out of it). In that test run, I used clay bentonite mixed with peat moss and tinted with concrete primer. The wall is broken up in several spots by several pieces of red shale that I glued in as outcroppings (flat piece cut to size) as well as several strips of tree fern fiber. As I noted above it has been up and running for a couple of years now and I actually had to thin out the excess ferns that grew from the peat and treefern fiber (including one tree fern). I am still running it to monitor how it hold up over time. The next task is to plant some bromeliads in it and see how they do (there is one very small neo at the base but that was more because I needed someplace to put it and its been there for about a year now and has pupped several times). The lighting over the tank is two 55 watt setups from AH supply.

Depending on the slope wanted you can order the clay from a pottery supply place and rehydrate and use it.
If you are going to have a lot of water running on it (more than a trickle), then you will need some kind of stabilizer in it or create it out of a sculpted material like hydrostone.

Ed
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Old 10-28-2008, 09:26 PM
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Default Re: red clay substrate

Ed,

Any chance of a picture or 2? I'm having a really hard time visualizing what a clay background would look like but sounds really interesting and this is the first time I've heard of someone doing that (unless I'm missing something)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ed View Post
I have a clay drip wall set up in a 29 gallon test terraria where the drip wall runs 24/7 for over 2 years now and only had one or two pieces fall out of it (more due to me pulling some unwanted ferns out of it). In that test run, I used clay bentonite mixed with peat moss and tinted with concrete primer. The wall is broken up in several spots by several pieces of red shale that I glued in as outcroppings (flat piece cut to size) as well as several strips of tree fern fiber. As I noted above it has been up and running for a couple of years now and I actually had to thin out the excess ferns that grew from the peat and treefern fiber (including one tree fern). I am still running it to monitor how it hold up over time. The next task is to plant some bromeliads in it and see how they do (there is one very small neo at the base but that was more because I needed someplace to put it and its been there for about a year now and has pupped several times). The lighting over the tank is two 55 watt setups from AH supply.

Depending on the slope wanted you can order the clay from a pottery supply place and rehydrate and use it.
If you are going to have a lot of water running on it (more than a trickle), then you will need some kind of stabilizer in it or create it out of a sculpted material like hydrostone.

Ed
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Old 10-28-2008, 10:18 PM
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Default Re: red clay substrate

On this computer I found a couple I took during construction before I mudded up the back of the tank and I can take some of the tank as it is now.. I just have to look for the inbetween ones. I'm sure I took a few of it afterwards. I don't have time to mess around with uploading some shots so shoot me a e-mail at [email protected] and I'll send them to you.

Ed
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Old 10-29-2008, 11:08 PM
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Default Re: red clay substrate

Well if you don't mind, I will just post them for you. Here are some pictures you sent me months ago, of the tank when first setup and then grown in.





email me whatever else you got and I'll post them too..
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Old 10-29-2008, 11:44 PM
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Default Re: red clay substrate

Here are some more.



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Last edited by Jason; 10-29-2008 at 11:58 PM. Reason: fixed photo links
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Old 10-29-2008, 11:51 PM
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Default Re: red clay substrate

I can't see the images Jason put but Ed sent me the pictures one is the same as Corpus posted but here is the other. (hope he doesn't mind me posting it)
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File Type: jpg Atelopustankgrownin.jpg (101.1 KB, 282 views)
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Old 10-30-2008, 03:48 PM
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Default Re: red clay substrate

I don't know if you noticed but there is also a stream return in the middle of the tank. The interesting thing is that the background has been stable for a couple of years now (and the bromeliad in the bottom right has pupped four or five times and is making a nice clump). The one thing that doesn't come out well in those photos is that the substrate in the right which has an underlayer of clay covered by about 1/2 inch of finely milled cypress mulch has dry peaks and wetter lower levels allowing for some microclimate variations.

Ed
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Old 01-11-2009, 09:15 PM
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Default Re: red clay substrate

Thanks guys for all the help!

So red art clay ordered from a pottery supply(pottery store maybe) should be safe? Anything to avoid? I recall using it in ceramics class and the consistency should be good enough that it won't fall apart(not being used for a waterfall).
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Old 01-12-2009, 03:52 PM
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Default Re: red clay substrate

Yep the red art clay from the pottery stores is fine. I got a bunch and have been mixing it with the calcium bentonite.

When you mix it up you want it to be thick enough to sculpt into place and then you want to let it set for at least 24 hours. (not long enough to start to crack. If it dries enough to crack it won't be stable when it gets wet).

Ed
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Old 01-12-2009, 03:55 PM
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Default Re: red clay substrate

anyone tried using it to make fake rocks|?
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