Dendroboard banner
1 - 3 of 3 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
452 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I was wondering if anybody else does this or has other simple alterations to the "standard" techniques they use? This can go for clay or the classic GS+silicone backgrounds or anything else really

I use the standard clay background (redart+bentonite+some shredded sphagnum) but instead of applying it directly to the glass or background area, I cut out a "frame" using egg-crate (exactly as I would if I was doing a false-bottom).

I size my egg-crate to the shape of my background (especially helpful on the sides of smaller tanks where I want some areas covered and some visible). I then apply my clay directly to this eggcrate, filling in all the little holes. Along the edges (especially on the sides of tanks) I use small chunks of green moss to cover it up.

This also allows me to plant some of my smaller bulb plants directly into my back wall with good support even on a very thin background (I just slide the bulb right into one of the eggcrate holes).

I know this is commonly used when making GS backgrounds, but I have not seen other members use this technique when making clay backgrounds. I find it is much more resistant to cracking even if it dries out and I can get away with MUCH thinner backgrounds that can still support the weight of my plants. The only problem is on occasion a tiny bit of the outline of the egg-crate will show, but a quick rub of the thumb fixes that problem.


Alternatively, on areas with much thicker walls, I actually use my GS/foam + eggcrate build first, and then I file down the great stuff for a nice porous surface and add a topcoat of clay. It certainly helps with the weight, and I think that it would hold better under long-term humidity but I'm not too positive on that....either way it hasn't crashed on me and I doubt it will :)


I'd love to hear others' "personal styles" of making their backgrounds aside from just different recipes for clay or whatnot.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
452 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
@boabab: for exactly that reason!! I can make my clay wall very thin without cracking ....I find if I make my wall that thin without the eggcrate it tends to crack and peel away from the glass very badly....but with the eggcrate it holds its shape much much better.

The GS "ledge" technique was exactly what I was referring to :p I do the same thing now but use sheet foam cut into shape.



Similar to the concept with the false bottom, I find using the "false wall" technique with the egg-crating (esp combined with foam for textures) to give me much more control over the final wall shape


oh and its a bit lighter which always helps :D



I don't get why so many people use kitty litter for their clay though....REAL clay is CHEAPER and easier to use!!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
452 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
i dunno i still prefer buying my clay for nothing and knowing exactly what I get. I picked up 10 pounds of red-art and 10 pounds of bentonite the other day for $7.69 total.


last time, i bought 5 pounds of each and with that i made a 10gal, an 18" cube, and a 29 gal (and i accidentally wasted a ton :p) ....i'm pretty sure my 20 lbs will last me forever


and its not nasty grey :p
 
1 - 3 of 3 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top