My log!

Discussion in 'Aquascaping' started by foxfish, 15 Nov 2010.

  1. foxfish

    foxfish Member

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    I collected this log to use as a yule log this Christmas but - I had an idea...
    I thought I might hollow it out & fill the hollow with soil & plants so step one.....

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  2. George Farmer

    George Farmer Founder Staff Member

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    Looks like a nice substrate too!! lol
     
  3. foxfish

    foxfish Member

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    That's good old Guernsey granite :thumbup:
     
  4. Arana

    Arana Member

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    OK i'm hooked, what's the next step? ;)
     
  5. foxfish

    foxfish Member

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    Well the log is 33'' long & that is the size of my tank so I hope to actually fix it right across the length but at about mid water.
    Next step however will be to drill multiple holes right though the log because I would like to see the plant root exit the bottom, I also need to cut the ends at the right angle to enable a nice neat fit in the tank.
    Once the holes are drilled i will completely coat the wood with several coats of epoxy.....
     
  6. foxfish

    foxfish Member

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    So I cut out the plant pockets & cut the ends to fit my tank, i will line the pockets with the green mesh to hold the soil but, allow the roots out!
    I have also coated the log with two coats of epoxy, The log is now soaking in my outside rain water barrel...

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  7. Arana

    Arana Member

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    more, more :thumbup:
     
  8. ghostsword

    ghostsword Member

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    Very good idea mate.. Really good..
     
  9. Mirf

    Mirf Member

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    Can I ask where you bought your epiglass from? Also will just the 2 coats be enough to prevent it from rotting?

    I'm seriously considering trying this on a fake background build for my fire bellied toads after a makor disaster with the yacht varnish.....
     
  10. foxfish

    foxfish Member

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    I am afraid I cant give you any more until I have soaked my log for a few weeks!

    I hope the epoxy will keep the log intact especially the bark but, I think it would need several more coats to guarantee a complete seal. The bark makes it very difficult to fill every nook & cranny however the log does have a very good coating.
    Polyurethane should of given you a good seal too - Bondaseal G 4 is a good product.
    I wrote a bit here viewtopic.php?f=21&t=13510 about making backgrounds.
    I buy my epoxy wholesale in 4.5lt cans 10 at a time but, it is still expensive :crazy:

    I will now give some thought to how to fix the log in place, I have a few options like making up two perspex strips about 75mm wide that I can fix into the log ends & clamp to the top of the tank. This would enable me to easily remove the log for "maintenance"!!

    I doubt if the log will sink even after soaking as any water ingress will be very slow?
    However I want to see what happens after a few week in the water butt....
     
  11. Mirf

    Mirf Member

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    I was looking at the g4 but it would have cost about £40 to do and it's only a 30 inch tank :wideyed:

    I already had the yacht varnish, so it seemed sensible to use what I had....big mistake! It took over 2 weeks to cure and as soon as it went in the water it started to melt :twisted: . I was not amused having spent 3 weeks carving and covering the poly, then grouting. I make all my own backgrounds for my viv's, but I'm still struggling to find a fail safe sealant for aquariums.

    Have you thought about using some powerful magnets to secure the wood? Drill a hole and fix one magnet either end of the log, with a good covering of aquaruim sealant to stop it rusting, then the other magnets would simply sit outside of the tank, securing the log in place?
     
  12. foxfish

    foxfish Member

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    ~Did you look at my link - black spray foam can give good instant results without any sealer.
    G4 "clear" has a yellow tinge like virtually any polyurethane varnish but it is available in black or green, you can mix the two colours to get various shades.
    G4 is not that expensive about £15 per litre, that should be easily enough for a 30'' backdrop.
    Epoxy, is not so easy to work with but will give a completely clear finish or any colour you like with added pigment however it is quite expensive at about £25 per litre & it wont stretch out like G4 either!

    Re the magnets - cunning idea!
     
  13. Mirf

    Mirf Member

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    I did indeed see your link, sorry I should have said that in my previous post. I loved the cave set-up you did for your friend.

    I need to build mine out of poly. It's not just the back 'wall' I will be making, but also a land area dropping down into the water so the fbt's can safely get in and out (they are not good swimmers) It will also be getting covered in a layer of coir before the final waterproof layer goes on and I wil probably be including bits of bog wood, rocks and the like as well.

    The main problem I'm having is achieving a natural look. Most waterproof finishes tend to be high gloss :? (not sure if G4 is or not?) £15 a litre? The links I was looking at for G4 pond sealant was coming in at a tenner for 250ml.....

    As for the magnets....I have my moments ;) :D
     
  14. foxfish

    foxfish Member

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    Yes G4 has a very high gloss but, you can apply sand to the top coat to get a amphibian friendly mat non slip finish.
    You should be able to get clear for about £12 & coloured at about £15
    I find that adding a few different textures & shade of sand gives a great finish - play sand, sharp sand black sand is a good combination.
    http://www.cfsnet.co.uk/acatalog/G4_Pon ... ured2.html
     
  15. Mirf

    Mirf Member

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    Thanks for the link, sadly they only sell the clear in 5 litres and I can't find it cheaper than £18 plus delivery, but that is still a hell of a lot cheaper than I had found previously.

    Sand would be the easiest option but may be a little too rough on their somewhat delicate skin. The idea is to try and make it look more of a riverbed type theme.

    Wonder if it would work over waterproof grout and coir......hmmmmm I see some experimenting coming on :lol:

    Apologies for the complete hi-jacking of your thread :oops:

    What plants are you planning to use with your log?
     
  16. foxfish

    foxfish Member

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    You wont get a rough texture if you work the sand into the surface with a brush as the grains become coated - you do need to experiment :)
    Reference to the log - I will be back in two weeks......
     
  17. Mirf

    Mirf Member

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    Time to start playin......I mean experimenting 8) Thanks for your help, it's very much appreciated.
     
  18. foxfish

    foxfish Member

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    Back to the log!
    I have just been looking into buying a small quantity of soil to fill the log, it seems 3 kg is the least you can buy.
    That would be fine but -

    1 x Oliver Knott NatureSoil Black 3L Normal £19.99

    £19.99Sub-Total:

    £15.00p&p

    £34.99Total:

    Crikey!!
     
  19. foxfish

    foxfish Member

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    Right - I made up a couple of perspex ends for the log & tied it in place........

    log.jpg

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    Mats A likes this.
  20. danmil3s

    danmil3s Member

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    that looks good mate nice to see something a bit different cant wait to see how it looks planted
     

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