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Is anyone else making DIY Rocks?


oldbrownies
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Is anyone making DIY rocks, I'm just fishing for ideas about peoples ways of making them...

 

I've used to recipes, one for base rock:

1-2 Parts cement

1 Part Coral sand

1-2 Parts Aragonite

2 Parts Rocksalt

 

I made some by laying out 18X8-10 inch slabs of this mix about an inch thick, with areas covered in rock salt and areas that would connect to the next layer (to create short and wide caves though the rock) then smashing it into 8-12 inch chunks after it dried and it came out pretty realistic looking, half way between regular base rock and haitian rock. The with caves and stuff, before i smashed it up, it just looked like an ugly rock with slices through it, but with good flow through the rock itself... Its REALY rough.

 

 

Recipe two was for branchy stuff

2-3 parts cement

2 parts aragonite

2 Parts coral sand

1 part rock salt

 

Mixed pretty wet, but controllable, and piped with a plastic bag (like a pastry bag). and layered over aragonite sand, with multiple layers of branches and holes though the rock... this batch is still drying, but i expect it to be like a stiff matrix of rock, not as good flow through the rock though because of the added cement, but it should be more complex in shape

 

 

I don't have a camera, but I will see if i can't get ahold of one soon.

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Pictures, please! :)

 

I'm waffling between wanting to try DIY rocks or getting cheap base rock and building nice structures out of them with epoxy.

It looks really great in Iwan's new tank (a guy from Switzerland, thread is on RC). I stumbled across his thread yesterday, and he did a great job. Of course, he's got plenty of corals to cover up his rock with, so it doesn't matter what it looks like! :D

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Cement about 5 bucks

rock salt about 5 bucks

8 pounds coral "sand" 10 bucks

30 pounds of oolite (i have like 15-20 extra pounds) 30 bucks

 

pretty cheap, just takes some time to cure, you have to make sure that the rock salt disolves, and that the alk of the water in the cuing tank drops to a safe level

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We make rock at school. I don't follow any of those recipes. I use Portland Cement, Oyster shells and acrylic shavings. The acrylic shavings make the rock lighter and stronger. I just eyeball the mixture til it is the consistency I like. I then do wacky stuff with it like pouring it over an inflated rubber glove. Makes for lots of caverns and caves. You can shape it all sorts of ways. The main thing is that you need to cure it for awhile after you make it. There are several ways of curing. I am patient about this so I just put it in fresh water with a powerhead and change the water at least once a week. Some people add vinegar to speed up the process but I dont. Hope this helps. I think we could possibly do a rock making workshop at my classroom some Saturday or Sunday if there is enough interest.

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  • 3 months later...
We make rock at school. I don't follow any of those recipes. I use Portland Cement' date=' Oyster shells and acrylic shavings. The acrylic shavings make the rock lighter and stronger. I just eyeball the mixture til it is the consistency I like. I then do wacky stuff with it like pouring it over an inflated rubber glove. Makes for lots of caverns and caves. You can shape it all sorts of ways. The main thing is that you need to cure it for awhile after you make it. There are several ways of curing. I am patient about this so I just put it in fresh water with a powerhead and change the water at least once a week. Some people add vinegar to speed up the process but I dont. Hope this helps. I think we could possibly do a rock making workshop at my classroom some Saturday or Sunday if there is enough interest.[/quote']

 

Where do you get the acrylic shavings? Also do you use the cement that I can find a home depot. Have you used the white mortar that you use for laying tile? I'm hoping to try to make some diy rock this coming weekend.

 

Bob

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Where do you get the acrylic shavings? Also do you use the cement that I can find a home depot. Have you used the white mortar that you use for laying tile? I'm hoping to try to make some diy rock this coming weekend.

 

Bob

 

Garf's mixture uses plastic shavings too, they say it promotes coraline growth like crazy.

I'd call a plastic shop and see if they can sweep the floor under the saw and put in a bag for you. I can't imagine it would cost anything. If you really want a DIY, get scraps and make your own shavings with a router table or saw....

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  • 4 weeks later...

All:

 

Thanks for your help with DIY rock recipes and comments. We have finished making about 125lbs of rock. Here are a couple pictures. We ended up deciding on the following recipe:

1 part type I/II cement : 3parts crushed oyster shell : ~1.5 parts H2O. This seemed to give a relatively porous yet strong rock. One thing that we found that made the rock more natural looking was to completely cover it in a mixture of crushed oyster shells and argonite sand after the rock structure was formed. This way the rocks were coated and it did not look like grey cement. Our rock has been curing for about 3 weeks now. Doing water changes twice a week. The PH started out above 12 and has now dropped into the 9's.

post-31-14186773526_thumb.jpg

post-31-141867735263_thumb.jpg

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No rock salt for to make the rock more porus?

For to make the rock more porous I did try rock salt and pasta. The rock salt didn't seem to make much difference and the pasta made the rock mushy. Maybe I used too much pasta. As it is, it is pretty porous. If I get a chance I will try to measure the density of the rock I made and compare it with some natural base rock that I have setting around.

 

Bob

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I hear pasta swells and breaks the rock, and it leaves nutrients in it, I've done it with and without rock salt (about 1/3 to just under 1/2 of the mix was salt) and the rock salt stuff is doing much better in my tanks, its covered in pods, sponges, tunicates, coralines, and worms and all that stuff, but the stuff without it only has coraline, since nothing can get into it to grow

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