Smoothing Out Lava Rock For Pleco

75g Discus Tank

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Hello Fellow Fishlorians!

My L018 golden nugget has torn his fins on the lava rock that is his cave.

I will be moving him to a QT tank with smooth river stones and plants only to make him feel safe and give him an environment to regrow his fins.

But what about the lava rock?

It is a main support rock that holds my driftwood up so I can’t remove it.

How can I make it smooth so my pleco doesn’t injure himself anymore?
 

Demeter

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Lava rock is very rough and brittle. I won't hurt to try sanding it down but there's a chance it could break if done too roughly. Is it imposible to replace it with a chunk of slate or other, smoother rock/decor?

I ended up removing the 2 large lava rocks in my African tank for the same reason. The fish would scrap themselves on the rock when going to hide from an aggressor or trying to hide when I clean the tank.
 
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75g Discus Tank

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The entire scape centers around lava rocks and driftwood, so a reshape would make the tank look weird.

Could I take a small piece of pond liner to cover it up a bit?

The coloration is very close.
 

Fanatic

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Hmm, I have a ton of lava rock in my tank and it has a bristlenose in there.
The rock is very rough but he loves to suck his mouth on it, never has it torn his fins?
 
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75g Discus Tank

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The certain piece is extremely rough at one point where the pleco dashes away when somebody approaches the tank too quickly.

it’s like a wedge which is s good place to hide, but it’s extremely sharp.
 
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