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jball1125
01-18-2011, 08:28 AM
Hey simply.

I'm working on a new easy maintenance tank at the moment and wanted your input on putting tile as the "substrate"... I plan on getting some of the outdoor tiles from home depot. They have a natural stone look to them and I think would give tank a real nice look without having to use gravel or sand. Do you think these type of tiles would be safe? I will be doing pH tests but was more concerned on the toxic metals???

Laconic
01-18-2011, 09:14 AM
Slate is ok (I have a piece in my aquarium anchored to driftwood to keep it down). I would be leery on any tiles that are not cut from stone.

Jennie
01-18-2011, 09:14 AM
There was a whole thread on this somewhere in the forums, maybe search tile, where the member siliconed it to the tank bottom and siliconed in the cracks as well, but was something about the type of tile required, I believe. It did look really good

ZX10R
01-18-2011, 10:10 AM
I have ceramic tile in my tank with no problems. I was told not to use granite because it would mess with your PH but someone on here told me they use it.

nc0gnet0
01-18-2011, 10:19 AM
Slate tiles are your best bet, marble works as well. Can't comment on the porcellin tiles with glaze. As you already probably know, PH will be your major concern. This eliminates alot of the natural stone tiles, as they tend to increase PH quite rapidly. Slate doesn't do this, neither does marble, and from there it is just trail and error with testing. However, if your willing to spend a few extra dollars for a specific "look", there is a product on the market that can safely seal in virtually any tile. It's called enviro-tex, a two part epoxy acrylic that cures clear and has been used by many reef enthusiast over the years.

http://www.creative-wholesale.com/Envirotex%20Lite.htm

This was actually posted by another user on this forum some time ago, and I can't remember his/her name. I can say I have used it and it is amazing stuff and aquarium safe. I have used it both to lay tile in the bottom of my tank and then pour the stuff over the tile to completely seal everything, as well as on an acrylic tank that had a black background that I want to experiment on. I used some two tone white/grey gravel/sand and mixed it in with the envirotex. With the tank laying with the black side down, spread a layer of the sand/epoxy mixture over the black acrylic and the result was fantastic. The drawbacks are it is not the cheapest solution, and once you use it it is permanent (you can't scrape it off like paint). However, it does allow for a whole host of applications.

jimg
01-18-2011, 10:36 AM
Marble will increase KH and GH which can increase PH
I would stay away from made up tiles,never know what they put in the mix.

nc0gnet0
01-18-2011, 11:11 AM
Marble will increase KH and GH which can increase PH
I would stay away from made up tiles,never know what they put in the mix.

This simply is not true, don't beleive me go buy one and test it....I did. While yes, marble is made of limestone, and limestone will increase KH and GH, the limestone in marble has been metamorphosized under extreem pressure and heat. In other words, marble is to limestone as glass is to silica sand.

I have pictures of a successful spawn with discus eggs being laid on a marble pyramid (cone) I made from marble tile. I have also placed marble tile in a tank and filled it with RODI water and monitored the TDS and PH for 10 days with no change.

edit: I would however test any tile, as i do suppose their could be insuperior product out there somewhere, but a decent quality marble tile should be fine.

Jennie
01-18-2011, 11:17 AM
YEAH, this is the one with the thread.. ck out his tank!
I have ceramic tile in my tank with no problems. I was told not to use granite because it would mess with your PH but someone on here told me they use it.

jball1125
01-18-2011, 11:21 AM
Slate tiles are your best bet, marble works as well. Can't comment on the porcellin tiles with glaze. As you already probably know, PH will be your major concern. This eliminates alot of the natural stone tiles, as they tend to increase PH quite rapidly. Slate doesn't do this, neither does marble, and from there it is just trail and error with testing. However, if your willing to spend a few extra dollars for a specific "look", there is a product on the market that can safely seal in virtually any tile. It's called enviro-tex, a two part epoxy acrylic that cures clear and has been used by many reef enthusiast over the years.

http://www.creative-wholesale.com/Envirotex%20Lite.htm

This was actually posted by another user on this forum some time ago, and I can't remember his/her name. I can say I have used it and it is amazing stuff and aquarium safe. I have used it both to lay tile in the bottom of my tank and then pour the stuff over the tile to completely seal everything, as well as on an acrylic tank that had a black background that I want to experiment on. I used some two tone white/grey gravel/sand and mixed it in with the envirotex. With the tank laying with the black side down, spread a layer of the sand/epoxy mixture over the black acrylic and the result was fantastic. The drawbacks are it is not the cheapest solution, and once you use it it is permanent (you can't scrape it off like paint). However, it does allow for a whole host of applications.

That coating looks interesting. It says that it can only be applied to flat surfaces. If I was to lay river rocks on the bottom and then covered them with this material to prevent from poop getting stuck underneath will it appear as if there was just rocks or would the coating be too dark at greater depth? Might order some of this stuff and play with it to see what's possible.

Thanks for the replies everyone.

jimg
01-18-2011, 11:32 AM
Very simple, type "how to increase gh and kh using marble" into you browser you will find many statements on using marble chips

nc0gnet0
01-18-2011, 12:05 PM
Very simple, type "how to increase gh and kh using marble" into you browser you will find many statements on using marble chips

Yes, using marble "chips" as in the landscaping marble you find by the 50lb bag. This would be the lower quality marble, not suitable for tile, as the limestone has verying degrees of hardness (meaning it wasn't completely metamorphsized). As I said earlier, feel free to test it. I imagine over a period of time it could change (months) the PH a bit, but the frequency of our water changes more then compensates for that.

These fry were hatched of the marble cone you see in the photo, with over 95% hatch rate. Unfortunetly, I did not save any images of the actual eggs on the cone but you will have to trust me they did lay on the marble tile. Now, if the marble tile was truly leaching anything significant into the water column, I am sure the eggs would have calcified and not hatched.:

http://i567.photobucket.com/albums/ss118/nc0gnet0/Oyw-ASRG%20fry/13.jpg?t=1295370147

nc0gnet0
01-18-2011, 01:03 PM
That coating looks interesting. It says that it can only be applied to flat surfaces. If I was to lay river rocks on the bottom and then covered them with this material to prevent from poop getting stuck underneath will it appear as if there was just rocks or would the coating be too dark at greater depth? Might order some of this stuff and play with it to see what's possible.

Ok, to get back on topic, in theory yes, although I am not quite picturing what you are saying. My main concern would be the thickness of the epoxy, and how it was applied. If you go too thick it would need to be done in layers otherwise the material will never properly cure. Also realize that this material is prone to scratching, so a thicker coating might eventually end up looking hazy, just like a scratched acryllic aquarium.

I would like to say I am by far not the first to use this stuff and followed a couple of threads on other forums before opting to try it myself. Alot of people use it with sand, to give it that sandy bottom look with the ease of bare bottom cleanup.

jball1125
01-18-2011, 01:48 PM
That would be so cool to use it on sand. I have to give it a try. I think my initial idea wouldn't work if it needs various layers... I wonder if I can find pics of people who have used it with sand.

nc0gnet0
01-18-2011, 02:11 PM
http://www.reefcentral.com/forums/showthread.php?s=&threadid=392144&perpage=25&highlight=faux%20sand&pagenumber=1

ZX10R
01-18-2011, 02:45 PM
Kraig from Kingdom Come Discus who is a sponsor on here just did a tank with the sand and resin. Here is the link if you want to see his tank or maybe contact him for info on his tank.

http://forum.simplydiscus.com/showthread.php?83507-Bare-Bottom-tank-with-Real-Sand-Look&highlight=

jball1125
01-18-2011, 05:10 PM
Thanks for the links guys.