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TommyMagic
04-03-2005, 04:14 PM
I'm from the UK and eggcrate is something that I am really struggling to find over here! I have been to B&Q (the biggest DIY chain in UK) and no luck, tried online and can only find one or two online credit bulk sellers, which is no good!

Seeing as I dont want to be putting the rocks directly onto the glass of my tank when I finally get the stuff in there, is there anything other than eggcrate that can be successfully used to achieve the same effect?

Many thanks!

Doc_Polit
04-03-2005, 05:35 PM
As another option, purchase a thin sheet of acrylic and cut it the same size as the bottom of your tank.

For appearance sake, you can always coat it in silicone, and then cover it in your chosen substrate. That way, should your fish dig to the bottom, it still looks natural and your bottom glass is not exposed.

The Doc :cool:

TommyMagic
04-03-2005, 06:04 PM
So would that achieve the same effect of spreading the weight? Wouldn't the fact that there is no grid leave a chance of a problem occurring? I cant explain what I mean haha but with the eggcrate there is less touching the actual glass, ah no I cant explain what I mean lol

chc
04-03-2005, 06:44 PM
I actually prefer the acrylic method. Best to use before anything is in the tank to avoid gravel/sand getting under it.

TommyMagic
04-03-2005, 06:49 PM
Well I only have water in there at the moment so that wouldn't be a real problem, but I am still holding out for eggcrate, hopefully I will find it somewhere in the UK, but just cant seem to get hold of it!

skiitswitch
04-03-2005, 07:48 PM
In one of my tanks I put down a layer of fine crushed coral, then a layer of screen, then more substrate, and another layer of screen - that way the rocks sit on the screen, and when the fish dig down they can only dig to the screen and there's still about 3/4 inch of substrate to protect the bottom/distribute the weight... it's been working well for about a year now... :)

OwassoFish
04-03-2005, 10:56 PM
I'm using a 1" thick piece of styrofoam on the bottom of my tank. I just laid the sand substrate over the top of it. It works real well at spreading the load and cushioning the bottom. I found that the garage door insulation was almost perfect size at 4'x12". Maybe it will be easier to find some styrofoam. Good Luck!

Doc_Polit
04-04-2005, 12:15 AM
Many fishkeepers seem to believe that the weight of our decor (rocks, in this case) is to blame for broken bottom panels.

This is a fairly common belief. To clarify somewhat, it is not the weight that causes the damage, it is the resulting "pressure points" that cause glass breakage.

These pressure points can come from sharp corners/edges or grains of substrate caught between heavy rocks and the glass.

Eggcrate, acrylic, and styrofoam all serve the same essential purpose. They provide a "cushion" against pressure points and even out weight distribution on the botttom pane.

Hope this helps.

Doc_Polit :cool:

Glaive
04-04-2005, 12:24 PM
You could always try hacking up a milk crate

TommyMagic
04-04-2005, 12:36 PM
Ah well by the looks of it I have been very lucky, my LSF said that they have started stocking it again after not having it in for about a year and they get some on thursday, so I should be ok now! But thanks for the help, I will consider the different options anyway but think I will go with eggcrate!

Torch
04-04-2005, 05:53 PM
Originally posted by TommyMagic
Seeing as I dont want to be putting the rocks directly onto the glass of my tank when I finally get the stuff in there, is there anything other than eggcrate that can be successfully used to achieve the same effect?

Many thanks!

I do not understand why people want to use eggcrate. I have been doing this for years with large rocks and never even heard of a tank cracking.

Just wondering.

TommyMagic
04-04-2005, 05:57 PM
I think it's just a 'better to be safe than sorry' situation.

There is always going to be those that never have a problem, but there is the minority cases that have these troubles and if for a small cost you can ensure it is nearly impossible, then why not really!

skiitswitch
04-04-2005, 09:53 PM
ditto tommy - There have been so many people that have had the problem, it isn't worth the risk, IMO. When you have 200+ lbs of rock in a tank with fish that do nothing but dig, I think it's a good idea to have something down there to protect the downstairs neighbors :D

TommyMagic
04-05-2005, 07:14 AM
I went to my LFS today and asked if they had any eggcrate, they had told me on the phone that they did but that ended up being foam! They said they had a plastic grid in the Marine section, it was the exact same thing I was after, but they couldn't understand why I wanted it for the purpose I said!

Is this not a very common practice? It seems very common on this site and has been mentioned to me numerous times already! Plus my LFS is a very good one with many staff and quite renowned in the UK, so it surprised me!

Torch
04-05-2005, 03:22 PM
Originally posted by TommyMagic


Is this not a very common practice?

I am a member of the Texas Cichlid Association and we have meetings every month. In the several years I have been going to meetings and the 10+ years I have been in the hobby I have never heard of this except for here online.

I am not saying there is anything wrong with it, just I do not think it is necessary.

TommyMagic
04-05-2005, 03:30 PM
Well it would cost me around 30.

For that I could get 6 cichlids (common types) or one of the Synodontis petricola I want a pair of!

My dad also thinks it is unnecessary, so I am beginning to think against it!

What sort of things do you do at a Cichlid Association? Just talk about breeding, different species etc, pretty much a live version of this board? Sounds quite interesting, I bet you find out a lot of information!

I'm still setting my tank up, at the very early stage and haven't decided on which cichlids yet etc, may i ask what type you keep? Do you believe in mixing Tangs, Malawis and Vics? Bit off topic from this thread I know :-)

Torch
04-05-2005, 05:00 PM
Originally posted by TommyMagic
What sort of things do you do at a Cichlid Association?


may i ask what type you keep? Do you believe in mixing Tangs, Malawis and Vics? Bit off topic from this thread I know :-)

We usually meet at a members home and look and discuss their fish for a bit. Then we sit down and discuss up comming events like auctions, fund raisers, ect. Sometimes we are lucky enough to have a guest speaker. The auctions we have are increadible. Saturday is a fish show where awards are given and speakers talk. Ad Konings (sp) will be at our next one. Then sunday is a live auction. Everyone brings fish and the auction lasts from 10am to around 6pm. Once we had so many bags of fish it went to almost 11pm.

I keep mostly Tangs with one tank of Malawis. The Malawi tank has Domasini and Yellow Labs, about ten of each. The contrast of the yellow and blue is nice looking.

I have three other tanks of Tangs. Mostly Brichardi, Calvus, Leleupi (orange and yellow), Cyprichromis, and a couple of Frontosa.

I just bought some Peacocks a few days ago. I did not really have the space but I could not pass them up.

Thanks,
Torch.

TommyMagic
04-05-2005, 05:36 PM
Sounds like it would be a good oppurtunity to share information!

So you don't mix Tangs and Malawis in the same tank then? That's the problem I am having, deciding which lake to go with in my new 40g tank!

Torch
04-05-2005, 07:00 PM
Originally posted by TommyMagic
Sounds like it would be a good oppurtunity to share information!

So you don't mix Tangs and Malawis in the same tank then? That's the problem I am having, deciding which lake to go with in my new 40g tank!

Try it, if there is a problem then just seperate.

People told me Domasini would beat up the Yellow Labs and that would not work. I gave it a shot anyway and it is working just fine. The key was I had ten of each so there were so many I think it kept the agression down.

Try things like putting some dither fish in. I have found that danios work great. They are cheap and look nice. They are fast and can take a beating. :D

At the auctions the price of fish are increadible. You can get fish for about 20% of what you would pay at a store. I bought a bag of 5 domasini for 6 dollars at the last show. At my local Live stock store they go for between 15 and 20 dollars each!

I also picked up 2 six bar frontosa for 15 dollars. :cool: Those would be 40 dollars each easy at the store.

Look and see if there are clubs like this in your area. I know they do auctions in DFW, Houstion, San Antoino. The ACA also does one each year at different locations around the states. This year I believe it will be in DFW. I am excited because that means more people and more fish. :D

I will take some pics of my setup and post in a bit.

bfordyce
04-05-2005, 08:59 PM
I agree with Torch.. I think this risk is way overstated.

What I did was glue up some large rock structures with silicone.
On the "feet", I used an angle grinder to make the bottom fairly flat/smooth (you can get cheap ones for like $20.. should last long enough for this purpose)..

Anyhow, I put the rock structures in, and then dumped the sand in..

However, if I had to do it over, probably wouldn't do sand again. It was a pain to clean and it's a pain to stir it up every week so it doesn't go too anaerobic. I think fine gravel is much better.

Anyway, the rock structures probably weigh at least 50 lbs a piece.. no problem after 6 months.. The point is that the structures are so cumbersome, they aren't going to be moved around.. I use a power head to blow the sand around in the bottom caves to keep it stirred up.

Torch
04-06-2005, 03:34 PM
Sorry about the bad pics this is the best I can do. My camera is not that bad, but taking pics of tanks is not as easy as i thought it was.

http://users.waymark.net/chevrolet/Fish/121-2173_IMG.JPG

http://users.waymark.net/chevrolet/Fish/121-2182_IMG.JPG

http://users.waymark.net/chevrolet/Fish/121-2183_IMG.JPG

http://users.waymark.net/chevrolet/Fish/121-2186_IMG.JPG

http://users.waymark.net/chevrolet/Fish/121-2190_IMG.JPG

http://users.waymark.net/chevrolet/Fish/121-2192_IMG.JPG

Heyguy74
04-07-2005, 08:19 AM
Nice looking fish. Its not easy getting the fish to cooperate when you want them too.

Torch
04-07-2005, 12:09 PM
Originally posted by Heyguy74
Nice looking fish. Its not easy getting the fish to cooperate when you want them too.

Yeah, they just will not sit still..:D

redavenger
04-11-2005, 06:14 AM
I always worry that when changing the water that a rock might slip out my hand and hit the bottom and that would just be so so bad. Forget about the neighbors below, I can only imgaine the fish I would lose. it is a scary possiblity, but i dont think I would bother putting a layer down to protect it. I just concentrate when I am doing it and try not to drink more than a six pack before hand.