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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This summer I am going to make a 48 by 24 by 30 viv modeled on Justin Grimm's peninsula, I know mostly on how to make it but I am stumped on what he used to cover the vines and foam background. If you know anything on how me made the peninsula or any tips on how to make it that would be Fantastic!!:)
 

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There was a thread he made about the tank, that might be a good spot to start. Because I am using Tapatalk, I cannot link it to you, but look up on Google "peninsula vivarium dendroboard" and that should take you to it

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This summer I am going to make a 48 by 24 by 30 viv modeled on Justin Grimm's peninsula, I know mostly on how to make it but I am stumped on what he used to cover the vines and foam background. If you know anything on how me made the peninsula or any tips on how to make it that would be Fantastic!!:)
I'm still looking for the actual thread...it's at least 5 years old so it may take w bit to find it. But...I did find the thread on a different frog forum... Here is the direct quote with how he made the vines.

"The lianas are coated in a mixture containing 2 parts black GE SCS 1200 silicone (aquarium grade), 1 part Toluene (evaporates completely, and does not change the composition of the silicone. It is safe, just be sure to apply it in a ventillated area), and 1/2 - 1 part dried peat moss. The silicone is fully mixed with toluene prior to adding the peat moss. Once fully coated, the lianas are then coated with more dried peat moss. This is the exact same way I covered the background tree structure roots."

I hope this helps....let me know if you want the link to the other forum, but I'll continue on trying to find the thread here.

Ha ha! Found it! http://www.dendroboard.com/forum/parts-construction/65988-peninsula.html
 

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Oh yeah, the great toluene slurry vine and background method, I haven't seen that pop up in years. It's something a personal favorite of mine for making inorganic structures look natural.

A few notes about the method that don't seem to get mentioned and/ or really need to mentioned every time it's talked about.

-SERIOUSLY, you should only use the method OUTSIDE, in a well ventilated area. And leave it to cure outside for a few days as well, while the toluene vapors evaporate.

-Dampen your organics with water before you mix in your silicon and solvent, otherwise the organics are going to suck the toluene out of the silicon mixture and make it all but impossible to work with and/ or cause you to use an excessive amount of solvent to get to the proper "loose mud" consistency (see below).

-Toluene will dissolve cured silicon. This something of a bonus and a bit of a problem. It does make patching the inevitable thin spots of coverage much easier, however, virtually all tanks are repurposed aquariums glued together with silicon applying excessively solvent "wet" slurry on top of the silicon in the panel joints of the tank starts to become problematic (see above).

-In some places toluene is no longer available, such as California. The replacement product seems to be "industrial maintenance thinner". It does work, just not as well and doesn't evaporate as cleanly.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)
Does anyone know where the water feature is and what it did in his tank? :confused:
And I think I found the guy that bought Grimm's tank, he said he had part of the hardscape and the main driftwood ( which I am hoping is not rotting) and he also said that he might sell them
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Oh yeah, the great toluene slurry vine and background method, I haven't seen that pop up in years. It's something a personal favorite of mine for making inorganic structures look natural.

A few notes about the method that don't seem to get mentioned and/ or really need to mentioned every time it's talked about.

-SERIOUSLY, you should only use the method OUTSIDE, in a well ventilated area. And leave it to cure outside for a few days as well, while the toluene vapors evaporate.

-Dampen your organics with water before you mix in your silicon and solvent, otherwise the organics are going to suck the toluene out of the silicon mixture and make it all but impossible to work with and/ or cause you to use an excessive amount of solvent to get to the proper "loose mud" consistency (see below).

-Toluene will dissolve cured silicon. This something of a bonus and a bit of a problem. It does make patching the inevitable thin spots of coverage much easier, however, virtually all tanks are repurposed aquariums glued together with silicon applying excessively solvent "wet" slurry on top of the silicon in the panel joints of the tank starts to become problematic (see above).

-In some places toluene is no longer available, such as California. The replacement product seems to be "industrial maintenance thinner". It does work, just not as well and doesn't evaporate as cleanly.
Yesterday I read all 18 pages of Grimm's ( in 5 hours ) and i saw that there was a natural substitute called "turpentine from tree resin" does it work as good as toluene?
 

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Silicone can be thinned with mineral spirits (which can still be gotten in California, FYI). The same procedures and precautions apply: Apply the mixture outside and allow to off-gas for at least 1 week or until you can detect no odor (why not give it a month just to be safe?) I use this method to thin silicone for coating the inside of porous clay pots.
Start with a 5-to-1 ratio of silicone to spirits and mix to the the desired consistency...
 

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I have used turpentine to thin silicone to coat the inside of the nut shells, pods, etc... but make sure it is 100% natural turpentine. A lot of what is available is a cheaper substitute still labelled as turpentine.

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