Rygh's 250 gallon - rev.2

Discussion in 'Tank Journals' started by rygh, Nov 7, 2014.

  1. rygh

    rygh Supporting Member

    I might put a layer of fiberglass at the bottom.
    Doing that allowed the edges to be very thin, so no sudden bump on the transition.
    Plus you can bend them down slightly, so no gaps.
  2. rygh

    rygh Supporting Member

    New "AragoPoxy" rockwork!
    Like putting together rocks with concrete, except I used good epoxy.

    Here are some little mini coral holders. Generally for Palys/Zoas.
    These will be placed on the bottom, in front of big rocks.
    They deliberately have an overhang, which should reduce downward growth.

    Closeup of the way the epoxy/sand mix hold things together.

    Once nice thing about epoxy is that is soaks into the dry live rock, so what looks
    like a small bonding point is actually really pretty big and deep.
    The trick is to wet out the rock with liquid epoxy, then mix the epoxy/sand for the structural part.
  3. rygh

    rygh Supporting Member

    Here is my new larger center structure taking shape.
    Piece on back left is not done yet. Might make it a bit higher.
    Kmooresf likes this.
  4. tygunn

    tygunn Webmaster

    I really like that. The end result is awesome. I wonder if liquid epoxy would soak into wet live rock in the same way. I found the putty was not very good to join rocks.

    Sent from my Nexus 5 using Tapatalk
  5. rygh

    rygh Supporting Member

    There is underwater specific epoxy. If you took the rocks out for a few minutes, and applied out of the tank,
    it would seep into the large crevices, but likely not the small pores like when dry.
    But some underwater epoxies have some nasty chemicals.
    Yeah, that putty is lousy. But you need the clay to hold the epoxy in place if you apply it underwater.

    I have always wondered if you could super-glue underwater first, then use some low-viscosity, low-chemical
    underwater epoxy to make it more permanent.
  6. sfsuphysics

    sfsuphysics Supporting Member

    Going to leave the wood blocks under it when you put it in the water?? :)
  7. rygh

    rygh Supporting Member

    Absolutely. The new "Floating Reef" look.
  8. sfsuphysics

    sfsuphysics Supporting Member

    But seriously, is there another rock that is going under that piece? Or a rock in the tank that this all sits on?

    Btw I like you little sand bases you did around each one. Might confuse the hell out of any creatures trying to burrow in, but does look neat. (until it gets covered in coraline ;))
  9. rygh

    rygh Supporting Member

    That back rock piece is complicated. Basically --- not sure yet.
    I can't build one giant piece, because it would be too hard to get into the aquarium.
    The tentative plan is to have a set. Top rock, as seen, and some sort of support.

    Ideas for support:
    1) Build a rock-pile like structure. Fake sand base like others, with some short rock pillars as support.
    Would look the most natural.
    2) Build a clear acrylic pedestal, shaded under the center, so it almost floats there.
    Rather fun to have it float. But acrylic will invariably get covered.
    3) Use PVC pipe, covered with sand and rubble, as a structure.
    Nice and light. But might look really artificial.
    4) Vertical fiberglass rods, that match to holes drilled into top rock. Covered in sand and rubble.
    Structurally very solid.

    I am leaning toward a combo of 1 + 4.

    Funny thought about things trying to dig in. :)
    I (now) have a bare bottom tank, so the idea is to add some texture, even if it gets coraline covered.
    But in the shade under the rocks, it might stay somewhat sand-like.
  10. nly04

    nly04 Guest

    I like your rock work, very unique. I will need you help to show me how to put them together.
  11. Geneva

    Geneva Supporting Member

    Hi Mark - love your new rock sculptures - looks great! Did you remove all of your sand from your tank? How did you do it and how long did it take and any losses when everything was disrupted while you were doing it?

    I have sand and like it but was just wondering when / if folks typically change their sand and how often if they don't want to remove it?!
  12. rygh

    rygh Supporting Member


    Yes, sand is gone. Still happy with the change.
    I siphoned it out slowly. About 1/3 bucket each weekend. Took something like 6 weeks. No hurry.
    Basically done as part of water change, except instead of siphoning detritus, I siphoned sand.
    And it was NASTY. That bucket was black!!

    The only hassle is that the tube kept getting clogged with shells and bits of rubble.
    One trick was to keep the siphon tube almost flat against the bottom.

    No losses due to that. Very little disruption. No big clouds of crud like if you try to scoop it.
    Geneva likes this.
  13. rygh

    rygh Supporting Member

    The plan for the big back rock:

    For the rock:
    I drilled some small holes, and epoxied in some short fiberglass rods.
    I noticed the rock looked a bit weak in one spot also, so added some fiberglass,
    and covered the whole mess with epoxy/sand.

    For the base support:
    I am going to use 1/2 inch vertical pvc pipes, glued to the fake-sand base.
    I will then glue some interesting rubble and sand around those pipes.

    Also, I plan to cut some short PVC pipe pieces, from old 1", 1.25", and 1.5" pipes.
    With all my more open structures, there are less crevices for fish to hide and sleep.
    So making a few mini-caves out of pipe sections.
    Those will go in the back as well, covered in epoxy/sand on the outside.

    Picture of bottom of rock, before gluing.

    Picture of bottom of rock, when all done.
  14. rygh

    rygh Supporting Member

    Here is the base for the rock above. Pins on rock fit into ends of pipe.
    I still need to glue rock/rubble to the base, to hide the pipes.
  15. rygh

    rygh Supporting Member

    I finished the rock structure last night.
    Now it just needs some soaking, and then slowly add it to the tank.
    (A bit risky to put that much new rock in all at once)

    The picture from the back is fun. It shows how things connect.

    IMG_0805.JPG IMG_0807.JPG IMG_0808.JPG
    jonmos75 likes this.
  16. rygh

    rygh Supporting Member

    Argh, I hate Ich!

    Bought a nice Swallowtail Angel over the weekend.
    Fish was scraping up against the pipes a bit last night, so I looked close,
    and yep, there were a few little white spots.

    My planned treatment plan:
    Treat with Cupramine until the weekend, then slowly drop salinity to 1.010.
    Not really both at the same time, since water changes to drop salinity eliminate the copper.
    The timing is more so that I have time to deal with it.

    I tend to think Garlic does little other than getting them to eat more.
    Thought about Chloroquine phosphate, but don't have any, and not sure where to get it.

    Fish is still eating well, so hope for the best. But usually, after all the stresses
    of capture, shipping, and LFS, it does not go well.
  17. Coral reefer

    Coral reefer President

    You gonna catch it and put in qt?
  18. rygh

    rygh Supporting Member

    Fortunately it is already in QT.
    I just bought it.
    anathema and denzil like this.
  19. Anhit

    Anhit Guest

    The aquascape is looking good mark! I like how you added stilts so that theres no detritus buildup underneath the rocks.
    Coral reefer likes this.
  20. rygh

    rygh Supporting Member

    I also bought one of those new Gyre pumps, and plan to send flow down the back wall,
    then flow out forward under the rock.
    Both for an interesting flow pattern, and to keep detritus from settline.
    anathema and Coral reefer like this.

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