Simple DIY Backgrounds?

Tennesseecowboy

Member
Sorry if this is in the wrong forum, but I couldn't figure out which one to put it in, lol. Okay, I have a 45 gallon long tank and I was wondering what you all have done for aquarium backgrounds. I know of the concrete and Styrofoam ones but I really do not have the option to drain my tank for days for the silicone to cure that connects it to the inside. So does anyone have any ideas for backgrounds that either do not have to be siliconed to the inside, or can be attached to the outside? I know I could be normal and buy one from my lfs, but that's too easy. Thanks
 

AquaticLeopard

Member
I have a much smaller tank that I needed a background for (5.5gal) and I made a background for it using scrapbook paper and black construction paper. You could pick a colour of poster paper that you like and cut it to the correct size and tape it against the back. Or if you are feeling a bit artistic, paint or draw on a big piece of white poster paper. I am considering trying to paint a sunken ship or the kraken for my small tank when I get tired of the current background. if your tank is planted a dark blue or dark green background might look good. If you find a nice high quality photo you like you could get it blown up and printed to tank size and use that, although I think that might be expensive. I was originally thinking plant photo, not family photo, but what ever you like is what you should get.
 

Dolfan

Member
Many people paint the backside of their tank black or dark blue. This looks good and makes the inhabitants of the tank stand out very well.
 
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Tennesseecowboy

Member
AquaticLeopard said:
I was originally thinking plant photo, not family photo, but what ever you like is what you should get.
Yeah I think that a family photo would scare my fish a little too much.. Hahahaha. And both of those are very doable ideas. I'd prefer not to paint it as I'd also have to drain it to get behind it (The back is hard to access from the stand it is on). I like the idea of taping something across the back. I read somewhere that someone had used a black garbage bag, and I may try that. Thanks for the input guys
 

BerryBeezy

Member
The black tank backgrounds at Petsmart are relatively cheap. $2 or $3 maybe.


 
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Coradee

Moderator
Member
I've used black bin bags attached with double sided tape, one you add decor & plants you hardly notice it.
 

brebre

Member
Ive heard tin foil actually looks really good.
 
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Tennesseecowboy

Member
So, I tried the garbage bag idea, since I had it on hand, and it worked fine..But as always I talked myself into something new when I went to my LFS today.. I think it goes well with my fake plants and was pretty cheap too...Sorry the pics are blurry, I can't seem to take one without a fish darting by lol.

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Krysty

Member
Looks really good.
I bought a background once, then decided to not use it. I just have the back glass open. I may change my mind for future tanks but I like it the way it is.
 

Dennio

Member
I like the garbage bag personally, mostly because its what I use.
 
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Tennesseecowboy

Member
Dennio said:
I like the garbage bag personally, mostly because its what I use.
I liked it too, honestly. It took some work to get it unwrinkled enough, but I was happy with it. Too bad the next day I went to the Lfs and that went up in smoke..lol. But what's new right? EDIT: And I also had a thought for a future tank background.. I work a lot with wood, and I was thinking that I could use plywood and a router to draw designs (rocks, etc.) on it. With paint and details, it would make a fairly easy outside of tank background.
 

AquaticLeopard

Member
That sounds like it could be quite beautiful, maybe a bit heavy but if you have good woodworking skills, you could make a stand specifically designed to hold the background too, or attach the background to the stand. Although it is probably best if the background is removable in case you have any water or fish food spills. You will have to post some photos for us if you end up doing that for a new tank.
 
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Tennesseecowboy

Member
AquaticLeopard said:
That sounds like it could be quite beautiful, maybe a bit heavy but if you have good woodworking skills, you could make a stand specifically designed to hold the background too, or attach the background to the stand. Although it is probably best if the background is removable in case you have any water or fish food spills. You will have to post some photos for us if you end up doing that for a new tank.
I will if I decide too. I have a ten gallon tank that would be a good size for experimenting.
 

Dennio

Member
Tennesseecowboy said:
I liked it too, honestly. It took some work to get it unwrinkled enough, but I was happy with it. Too bad the next day I went to the Lfs and that went up in smoke..lol. But what's new right? EDIT: And I also had a thought for a future tank background.. I work a lot with wood, and I was thinking that I could use plywood and a router to draw designs (rocks, etc.) on it. With paint and details, it would make a fairly easy outside of tank background.
That sounds very awesome the only problem is getting the realistic affects of a rock surface because a router gives a very smooth uniform cut. Rocks stacked or unstacked tend to usually be assymetrical so a lot of the work would also have to come from possibly using a chisel. Not to mention plywood is not very deep so it would lack a certain amount of depth that could be attained using a 4 inch piece of plywood(if it exist). I do however think its a wonderful idea no doubt, just giving off my opinion of things you could consider if you do decide to make it a project, in which case you better post up pictures and how tos

Source: Studying for Media Arts and Animation at the Art Institute of Pittsburg.
 
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Tennesseecowboy

Member
True, true. Maybe if I can mess around with the paint in the cracks I can make the depth seem more profound. And using the chisel to rough it up sounds like a great idea too! Thanks.
 

Dennio

Member
Tennesseecowboy said:
True, true. Maybe if I can mess around with the paint in the cracks I can make the depth seem more profound. And using the chisel to rough it up sounds like a great idea too! Thanks.
No problem.
 

DoubleDutch

Member
Do you know about the DIYfishkeepers-forum? Some great ideas overthere!
 
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Tennesseecowboy

Member
No I didn't but I'll definitely check that out, thanks!
 
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