Rock structure building

Discussion in 'Events & Announcements' started by Coral reefer, Jan 10, 2017.

By Coral reefer on Jan 10, 2017 at 2:31 PM
  1. Coral reefer

    Coral reefer President

    Mar 26, 2010
    Likes Received:
    we will be getting together at phuong (roostertech's) house again, this time to try our hand at rock structure building jester6 style! Planning on having a large bag of emaco that we can all share and the acryl additive as well. Smart to bring card board or tarp to work on. Maybe a folding table. Oh yeah, and rocks!
    I like what I've gotten from Marco rocks in the past. I recall it being about $100 for a 50 pound box. Dry rock.
    Let's get together sat jan 28th at 12 noon and bring your own lunch and beverages and or some cash to order pizza or something if that's what we want to do. I believe it takes 20 minutes to cure once you are finished building so however long that takes is what you should plan on. I may have some extra dead rock if anybody wants to buy some.
    Thanks @roostertech for hosting again!
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2017
    Newjack likes this.


Discussion in 'Events & Announcements' started by Coral reefer, Jan 10, 2017.

    1. Coral reefer
      Coral reefer
      We did let them sit for at least 20 min, but I think we mixed the emaco too wet and it was gonna take longer to set up. Gonna try some more at home where I have time to let them sit over night
    2. Julius Chen
      Julius Chen
      What i noticed was we shared tables that day. As my structure was curing, others could be pounding on the table in frustration :), the vibration actually knocked my rocks off. I moved mine to floor but it was too late.
      Newjack likes this.
    3. Flagg37
      There is a window of working time on the product too. If you continue to fiddle with it past the time it was starting to set up then it would become brittle.
    4. iani
      Yes the window is small, which is why mixing in small batches is best.
      Here is something I did with only zipties and hydraulic cement for my old 225 gallon tank. My first try building a rock structure. This was done about 7 years ago. If anyone needs any pointers I can probably help. I've used emaco with the acryl as well.
    5. jestersix
      Another thing is temperature, below 50 degrees it really slows down the cure. Plus this Emaco product goes through a very brittle stage during the cure - if you mess with it, things fall apart (not that I have ever done that...LOL). It has a short learning curve, I've done a couple of "hands on" demo/classes with folks taking home structures that were ready to roll. Of course, those were half day classes in a warm room...
    6. roostertech
      The outdoor temp was mid 50. I stuck this piece together with the really wet mix and left it there for two days. It seems to hold pretty well.

      Coral reefer and Newjack like this.
    7. jestersix
      Looking at the Emaco seams, it was mixed really wet for sure! That wet and at those temps would probably need at least 90 minutes to cure, maybe more. Once it cures, should be solid!

      As I said, if anyone wants to chat about using Emaco - shoot me a PM. I'm doing a dozen or so small to large builds a month, and Emaco is the best product I've used to date (going back to before many of you were born, 'cause I'm really old...LOL).
      Coral reefer likes this.
    8. Coral reefer
      Coral reefer
      Just mixed some up less wet, had way less time to work w it in my 65-70 degree fish room than last weekend.

      Will see how these feel tonight if I can't wait until tomorrow morning...

      Attached Files:

    9. Coral reefer
      Coral reefer
      So this is what I wound up with. seems to be pretty solid. I clearly failed to wait until the morning...but I did manage to scape my washing machine pretty good! IMG_0048.JPG IMG_0047.JPG IMG_0044.JPG
      Kmooresf and Julius Chen like this.
    10. sfsuphysics
      uh oh, hope you don't have to do laundry for the next day while it hardens up :D
    11. rygh
      But why does the middle on on top picture remind me of a dancing chicken. :)
    12. Coral reefer
      Coral reefer
      It reminds me of one of the walking tree things from lord of the rings...accidental for sure. I may try a couple of these in my tank
    13. sfsuphysics
      hahahaha, damnit now I can't unsee that image of Treebeard
      Coral reefer likes this.
    14. Lando
      What is MARS
    15. Flagg37
      Madison area reef society
    16. Apon
      Not Madison......its the Sacramento area reef club
    17. Flagg37
      Oops wrong one. Marine aquarists roundtable of Sacramento.
    18. Julius Chen
      Julius Chen
      I finally used the new rocks roostertech gifted me in the rock structure building event at his house, and built 2 structures (the left two in the attached photos).

      I used emarco-400. Key is to make sure the cement paste is not too watery. It can be as dry as play dough and still be effective. I dried them in air for 24 hours, then put them back in cycling container. Does not seem to trigger a mini ammonia spike, not that I could tell.

      I plan to redo the right side as well, after water parameters stabilize. Tank now has a bit more rocks than my eyes please, but this allows me more surface to attach corals. Will see if the fish still have enough room to swim in.

      THANKS to roostertech for the rocks!

      Rockwork_0.jpg Rockwork_2.jpg Rockwork_3.jpg
      Coral reefer and roostertech like this.
    19. Coral reefer
      Coral reefer
      I just finished mine finally too! I'll post up some pics on my journal pretty soon hopefully. It's been hard for me to remove some rocks, I like to give the fish swimming room and the coral room to grow, but I feel like I might be taking away from places for the fish to sleep. I added a marine pure ceramic media plate to make sure I have plenty of bacteria even after I removed some older rocks.
    20. Julius Chen
      Julius Chen
      Need a flat rock about 10" long and 1~3" tall. I have a few pcs made of volcanic ash which bought from Neptune, and only later read online that these volcanic material contain heavy metal and is not suitable for salt water tank.

      Is that true?

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