Infuriating Tank Background

Discussion in 'Freshwater Tank Equipment' started by CarrieFisher, Apr 16, 2017.

  1. CarrieFisherWell Known MemberMember

    Soooo... i bought background at Petco (i wanted a specific one), bought that over priced oily goo to attach said background.

    Painstakingly applied it with a credit card to ensure no bubbles, used a razor blade to ensure a perfect fit, and its coming off!!!!

    Soooo... I'm just going to deal with it for a bit, but any suggestions for the next go-round?

    I'm just furious that it's peeling already!

    I found a website that offers basically "cling" type backgrounds that looked great, but i may just experiment with Glad Press'n Seal next.
    Last edited: Apr 16, 2017
  2. AWheelerWell Known MemberMember

    I'm starting to think I like painted backgrounds better than anything else.
  3. BettanewbWell Known MemberMember

    +1 on the painted background. Some people say just water to stick it on or just tape it.
  4. grantm91Fishlore VIPMember

    +2 in the paint acrylic so you can scrape off but personally i use 3d background
  5. allllienWell Known MemberMember

    Yeah I like the 3D backgrounds best too -if you don't want to cut it or put in the tank, they look good just resting behind the tank also ;) As for the stick on ones, I've always just used clear tape, all the way around, and over the top edge (above water level) so water doesn't get trapped behind it.
  6. Hill DwellerWell Known MemberMember

    I just applied my first background. At first I just taped it on, but hubby commented about how one corner which was in good contact really popped while the rest looked dull. So I peeled away the tape, used a syringe to forge a few drops of water in between the glass and the background in the top corner then I used the cred card to get the bubbles out. It looked much better. Then I taped up the sides again so hopefully it won't peel.

    I might note I managed to wedge the top edge under the top rim of the tank and had taped the bottom edge to the bottom rim without undoing any of this when I came back with the water and credit card.

    It's been a few days and it seems to be doing well.

    Perhaps some tape at the edges will help to prevent any drying or disturbance that is causing your peeling?

    Good luck with it, it is a bit of an undertaking to get it "just so" isn't it!
  7. CarrieFisherWell Known MemberMember

    It was perfect and fine for 3 months, then it just started losing its grip and a couple of bubbles.
    I kinda feel like just taping it wouldn't make the image look the way it's supposed to.
    That SeaView stuff is garbage!

    I think I may go the "cling" route bc I can't drain at this point, move the tank and paint it.
    Well, I guess I could, but I'm just most certainly not going to do all of that.
  8. BettanewbWell Known MemberMember

    If you paint the tank you don't need to do any of that. I painted my tank all equipment running and fully stocked. I just used cheap acrylic paint from the dollar store.
  9. DrummindotWell Known MemberMember

    Yes, I was going to suggest that. If you want to paint it and can get behind the tank just use so acrylic brush-on paint and put a few coats on that way.
  10. CarrieFisherWell Known MemberMember

    It won't hurt anything?!
    I wonder if I can do a "sponging" type of multicolor thing?

    Do you guys have any pics of your tank (or the type of paint you used?)
  11. AWheelerWell Known MemberMember

    I didn't move my tank and just used a paint brush :) I used some of my daughter's acrylic paint (Liquitex basics from Amazon)

    Attached Files:

  12. BettanewbWell Known MemberMember

    Acrylic paint is water based so no odour.
    Here's a pic of my 10 with the painted back I also did my 20 long the same way. I used 1 bottle of paint for both tanks and just used a cheap dollar store paint roller to apply it. 20170417_145914-1.jpg
  13. grantm91Fishlore VIPMember

    Cute ocelaris i have two look they go to sleep together under my heater at night they are funny fish man the bigger one jumped out my tank the other night so glad i was there i did a d.i.y job to make sure it never happens again [​IMG]
  14. DrummindotWell Known MemberMember

    Acrylic craft paint is low to almost no odor. It's easy to apply and you can use roller, brush, or sponge to apply it.

    The tank I did it to has since been scraped off and reused elsewhere.

    That's the other nice thing about doing it with craft paint. It scrapes off with a razor blade super easy.
  15. BettanewbWell Known MemberMember

    You'll have to excuse the ugly fake plants in that tank that adorable snail on the front of the glass is a gold ball size apple snail and would decimate anything growing in there. So as long as he's he's alive a kicking my 10 gallon is not going to be planted.
  16. CarrieFisherWell Known MemberMember

    I'll have to look into this, bc this long bubble is driving my OCD a bit crazier!!!
    *rips hair out*
  17. BettanewbWell Known MemberMember

    It's cheaper to paint as well. To do both tanks cost around $3. And you can change up the color as well the acrylic just scrapes off.
  18. scarfaceFishlore VIPMember

    I painted my background with black acrylic as well with a mini roller, both of which I got at a arts and crafts store. Looks like I bought it that way!
  19. BriggsWell Known MemberMember

    Ooh! Something on this forum I actually know a lot about already! Acrylic paint uses a type of liquid plastic to suspend pigment, and it cures by losing water not by a chemical reaction that might release gases or toxic fumes as it cures. The chemicals that make the up the pigments themselves might not be 100% aquarium safe, but once the paint cures it will be safely sealed in by the acrylic. So long as no wet paint goes into the tank water, you should be good to go! I would avoid using anything with iridescence or metallic colors on anything going into the water just to be safe, but that is a bit of a moot point for painting the outside of the tank.

    Normal craft paints would work great because they tend to be designed for non-trational surfaces like drywall and glass (instead of specifically for things like canvas or board) and should sponge on well. You could even try working with some stencils! Just keep in mind that the first layer is the one you will see best through the glass.

    You can find specialty glass paint, but they will often run unless the surface is kept horizontal while it dries, so keep that in mind if you wander by any. I have a set I love that mimics stained glass, but it would just make a mess if applied to a vertical surface.
  20. clk89Fishlore VIPMember

    I personally like to use vinyl backgrounds. I know a lot of people do paint them though, I would suggest covering the top of the tank with garbage bag if you go that route just in case.