Slates? Homemade Rock Cave?

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by EmpPleco, Mar 22, 2006.

  1. EmpPleco

    EmpPlecoWell Known MemberMember

    Hello everyone,

    It's been a while since I have been active on the forum, but busy with stupid midterms for college and just had a death in the family and all. But all behind me now, I should be back :)

    Anywho, I have recently been trying to convert my 20 gallon from TOTALLY unnatural, to very natural looking. I still have all of my fake plants in the tank, but did add one small anubias. I replaced a very crummy fake looking colliseum with a huge piece of branching driftwood, but now i want to replace my fake looking Roman Columns with a "homemade cave". I was thinking something along the lines of...

    2 flat slates projecting straight up vertically from the gravel and another flat slate resting across the two to make sort of like a "house shape, accessible from both sides, if you can see what I am saying. Also. I wanted to kind of layer rocks of all sizes around it and on top of it to make it look like a rock cave. Of course I would also use the sides of the tank for support. Do you all think that this is a good idea? If so, does anyone know where I can find some Flat slates? I was thinking I would have to buy them, because I don't know of anywhere locally that I could find them (like on the ground, in the park, etc) naturally.

    If anyone has any ideas, or suggestions to make my idea better, please give them to me!! I love new ideas :)

    Thanks for listening/reading my long crazy e-mail ;)

  2. Parvath

    ParvathNew MemberMember

    Thats a very good idea. Now you got me thinking of what I can do for my aquarium.

    I think the best place to find such rocks would be parks with streams or flowing water.
  3. OP

    EmpPlecoWell Known MemberMember

    That's true -- i didn't think about that -- alot of streams have flat slate like rocks, they help the water move along smoothly. WOW thanks ! :) Now I just have to find a nice natural stream around Baltimore .... hmm :-\ .. lol
  4. fish_r_friend

    fish_r_friendWell Known MemberMember

    if you travel to the black hills you can get a permit to get slate ;)
  5. OP

    EmpPlecoWell Known MemberMember

    DID I say thanks for listening to my crazy long e-mail?

    Wow - where was my mind that day.

    You have to have permits to get slate? WHY?
  6. Butterfly

    ButterflyModeratorModerator Member

    Because its most likely federal property AND SOOO is the slate. :)
    Here is what I did with the 55G when I set it up

    I got the rocks where they sell rocks to contractors for building houses. They have them in big baskets. But individuals can buy by the pound. That is 80 lbs of rock and paid 20 cents per lb. = $16.00. You might be able to find some thing like that.
    If you want just individual caves you could do something like this. Scroll down and take a look.

    Just some suggestions.
  7. vin

    vinWell Known MemberMember

    You know what makes an easy, inexpensive cave??? Clay flower pots...Won't harm the water, smooth edges and come in a variety of sizes....Bury them halfway into the gravel bottom and you've got a cave....They look pretty cool too and not far fetched in a natural setting.
  8. off-ice

    off-iceNew MemberMember

    Any garden center should have slate, and a lot cheaper than any fish store. That's where I got mine.

    He is a few caves I made and how I did it:
  9. Parvath

    ParvathNew MemberMember

    off-ice... nice work with the caves :) Do u glue the rocks together? or You just place them one on top of the other?

    I like Vin's idea too..
  10. Jon

    JonWell Known MemberMember

    off ice used silicone to glue them togethor...

    I found some hard sedimentary rocks in my back yard and just stacked them to build a little cave and now it is the favorite spot for my jullis...

    be creative and mebbe check out some garden stores for rocks i think they might have some.
  11. OP

    EmpPlecoWell Known MemberMember

    Wow guys! (and gals of course) Great Ideas! Thanks for all of your input. Some of these sound wonderful.

    The 'gluing' situation was actually that thing that concerned me the most, because that would kind of stink if i had to take my homemade cave apart everytime i wanted to gravel vac, because i obviously couldn't just let waste build up under there. but it just seems like so time consuming..

    Does anyone else have to deal with this?

    Thanks again for all the suggestions, you guys are awesome :)